Rev. Peter J. Orfanakos, Proistamenos
Rev. Joel L. McEachen
Rev. Joel McEachen was born in Queens, NY, on June 22, 1939, to H. Stuart McEachen, an immigrant from Canada, and Dorothy Florence Lombard, a Mayflower descendant. He completed public schools in Leonia, NJ. He graduated from Rutgers University with a B.A. in June, 1959; Saint Vladimir’s Seminary with a Master of Divinity; Sacred Heart University with an MBA.
He enlisted in a U.S. Naval Reserve blimp squadron at NAS Lakehurst, NJ, during college along with the Navy Reserve Officer Candidate program, entering flight school, Pensacola, FL, and serving in a Heavy Attack Squadron on board USS Forrestal. He served as squadron legal officer and made two Caribbean and two Mediterranean cruises, visiting many ports including Greece, Rhodes, and Cyprus, and led a Navy tour from Beirut to the Holy Land in 1962 where he met with the Patriarch Benedictos. Upon release he returned home and worked as an IBM senior programmer and served as a driver/attendant on the Leonia Volunteer Ambulance Corps. He was active as a Boy Scout, Scoutmaster, and Explorer Post Advisor and led a Philmont Scout Ranch, NM, trek in July 1965.
Having attended Eastern rite churches with relatives, and many Orthodox churches in Greece and around New York, he began attending Christ the Saviour and Saint Anthony's Orthodox churches, founded in north Jersey near his home using all English language services. He was received into Orthodoxy by Chrismation at Saint Anthony's Church, Bergenfield, NJ, entering St. Vladimir's Seminary in September, 1965. He became youth director at Saint Demetrios' Church, Astoria, NY, serving until June, 1967, when he became youth director at Saint Nicholas Church, Flushing, NY, until 1969.
He married Sandra Reshetar of Minneapolis, MN, at Christ the Saviour Orthodox Church, Paramus, NJ, June 4, 1967. Children are Elizabeth (Major Tom Johnston; children John, Jacob, Emily, Joel, William, Nicholas, Timothy, and Dorothy) John (Kimberly Gonzales; children Adelaide and Richard) Christine (Aaron Basil; children Caroline and Quinn Alexander,) and Katherine.
During his senior year and the year after, he served St. Vladimir's Seminary as business manager with responsibilities for the refectory, bookstore, maintenance of buildings and grounds, and vehicles. In June, 1969, he left for the University of Thessalonica with his wife and infant daughter Elizabeth for a year's studies and a third visit to the Holy Land. Upon their return home with Greek-born son John, Joel was ordained deacon by Bishop Timothy of Rodostolon at St. Andrew's Church, Chicago, IL, and priest by Archbishop Iakovos at Saint Nicholas Church, Flushing, NY, September 27, 1970, where he served as assistant pastor until October, 1973. Fr. Joel was appointed pastor of Holy Trinity Church, Ansonia, CT, until his retirement in 2009. He continued his interest in computers with work as an IBM systems programmer on VSE/ESA, VM, and MVS-z/OS systems.
With extensive Scout experience, Fr. Joel revised the Alpha-Omega Scouting award program in 1975 at the request of SCOBA. He wrote the CHI-RHO program in 1978, and developed the Prophet Elias adult leader recognition program in 1988. He helped with the early program at the Ionian Village and was a counselor there in 1972 while serving on the Archdiocesan National Youth Council 1971-1973. He served as Orthodox chaplain at five quadrennial Boy Scout National Jamborees beginning in 1981 and the 100th anniversary of Scouting 2010 Jamboree. The Boy Scouts of America recognized this service as well as participation at the annual Greater New York Orthodox Scout retreats with the Silver Beaver award; The Girl Scouts USA honored Fr. Joel with their Impact Award; and the Eastern Orthodox Committee on Scouting presented him with the Prophet Elias emblem in 1996. He completed certification training as general hospital chaplain with the National Association of Catholic Chaplains in 1972.
Fr. Joel is a member of the Sons of the American Revolution. He joined the Board of the Retired Clergy Association in 2008, served as treasurer and was elected president in 2012. He has been assisting Fr. Peter at the Saint Barbara Parish since 2009.
To view a video tribute honoring Fr. Joel and Presbytera Sandra on the 45th Anniversary of his ordination to the Holy Priesthood click on the following link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jdPCG8cKrtc
Rev. Steven M. Sarigianis
Rev. Steven M. Sarigianis was born on September 6, 1931 in Brooklyn, New York graduating from Abraham Lincoln High School. At 18, he entered Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology in Brookline, Massachusetts. He graduated from the Seminary in 1954 with a B.D. Degree and married Electra Limberakis of Somerville, Massachusetts later that same year.
He was ordained the Holy Deaconate and the Holy Priesthood in 1954 and assigned to the Saints Constantine and Helen parish in Middletown, Ohio, where he served for six years and was instrumental in building and completing a new church building.
In 1960, he was assigned to the Saint Nicholas parish in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania where he served ten years. During his ministry the parish was able to build and complete a new church facility. It was during this time that Fr. Steven was elevated to the office of Sakelarios and Economos.
In 1970, he was assigned to the Kimisis Tis Theotokou parish in Poughkeepsie, New York where he was assisted the community in paying off the mortgage to their new church facility. Fr. Steven served the parish for twenty-eight years during which time he was elevated to the office of Protopresbyter and served on the Archdiocese Spiritual Court for one year.
In 1999, he was assigned to the Saint George parish in Kingston, New York where he served the community for twelve years. Fr. Steven officially retired in 2012 after 58 years of active ministry.
In 2012 he relocated to Hamden, Connecticut and is currently assisting Fr. Peter and Fr. Joel at the Saint Barbara parish in Orange, Connecticut.
Fr. Steven and Presbytera Electra have three sons Michael, James and Anthony and several grandchildren.
To view a video tribute honoring Rev. Steven M. and Presbytera Elektra Sarigianis on the 60th Anniversary of his ordination to the Holy Priesthood click on the following link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JT0GOLGhslg
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