THE CLERGY

St. Demetrios Parish was blessed with several capable, devoted and dedicated clergymen who guided the Parish during its formative and developing years. His Excellency, Metropolitan Silas of our Diocese of New Jersey, has been a compassionate father, a guiding light and caring advisor to this Parish.

PASTORS OF ST. DEMETRIOS PARISH

Click on each pastor to read their bio's

The first priest appointed to this Parish was the Rev. Father Constantine Regopoulos, who had much to do with urging the local people to start a Church. Unfortunately, he could not accept the fact that, at that time, this was a very small Parish with a meager Church attendance, so he asked and was given a transfer after serving only a few months.
The next priest to be appointed in early 1969 was Rev. Dr. Andrew Missiras, who served the local Church until August, 1972. The son of a Church chanter and well educated. Father Andrew loves the Church, understands her problems, and is one of the top liturgists in this country. Also, because of his education, he understands the needs of the younger American-born generation. He speaks their language – both figuratively and literally. Although he has not been a priest here since 1972, he is still the Father of this Parish. Everyone calls on him when special occasions arise, and he is always available to share happy hours and sad hours with the local parishioners.
In 1972, the Parish decided that perhaps it was time for a full time priest to serve here, and, in as much as Father Andrew had a full time position in the faculty of a college, Rev. Father Christ Efstathiou was appointed as a full time priest.
Father Efstathiou was ordained late in life, having spent his entire life as a teacher of Greek – first in Greece, then in Rumania and then in the United States, serving as the teacher in several afternoon Greek schools. He served for a very short time, having become ill and died early in 1974. His furneral was held in our Church and he is buried in a local cemetery.
Rev. Dr. Sophocles Sophocles was then appointed as a part time priest, Father Sophocles, the son of a priest, was one of the earliest priests to receive a doctors degree and one of the most educated priests in the United States – a true scholar. During his time here he organized the choir and introduced our Church to the community at large. He died in 1979 and his funeral was held in Wilmington, Delaware, where he was buried.
Father Kallistos Christides was born and raised in Salonika, Greece. In 1940 at the age of 13, he entered Mount Athos where he continued his education in a religious environment.
He was ordained a deacon in 1954 in Veria, Greece and in 1956 was ordained a priest and Archimandrite. He served as Abbot of the Monastry of Holy Trinity of Sparmos, Olypos, Greece and pastor of the parish of St. George of Olympiados, Greece.
Father Kallistos immigrated to the United States in 1968 at which time Archbishop Iakovos appointed him pastor of the Greek Orthodox Church in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil. In Rio, he led his parish into building their own edifice.
Father Kallistos was appointed to St. Demetrios in 1979 and brought new life to the young parish. The greek School and the Sunday School were rejuvenated, and the attendance at the Church services reached new heights. Under his guidance, the new St. Demetrios Cultural Center was built, financial arrangements for it were made, and with his encouragement and support the Annual AHEPA Weekend grew and grew and became a major contributor in paying off the mortgage on the Center
When the Cultural Center was built, there were not enough finances to complete the interior properly. Ahepa helped with the finishing of some rooms, and the Philotohos helped in finishing the kitchen, but there was an unused area on the second floor which had been planned as an apartment. Father Kallistos offered to advance his own money, out of a comparatively small salary he was receiving, to complete the interior of the apartment. Thus, the apartment was completed
Ill health forced him to curtail some of his activities but never any of the many services found in the Orthodox calendar. He would take a few months leave of absence each year to go to Greece to his beloved monasteries and would return each fall with a renewed vigor.
In 1992 he retired permanently from St. Demetrios and moved to Greece where he still serves a small chapel attached to the Patriarchate of Jerusalem.
He returned to Wildwood to be present at the Silver Anniversary and the Consecration of his beloved St. Demetrios Church. Hundreds of participants to the AHEPA Weekends always ask about him – as he has made such an impression on all of them.
Father Demetrios was born in 1927 in Spilia, Messenias, Greece and started his education there. Following his graduation from the Gymnasium (high school) of Kyparissia, he immigrated to the United States and enrolled at the Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Theological School, graduating in 1958 with a B.A. in Theology. He then continued his education and received his Th.M. Degree in New Testament Studies from Princeton Theological Seminary and his M.A. and Ph.D. from Rutgers Universary.
He was ordained by Archbishop Michael in New York and was assigned to St. Demetrios Parish in Perth Amboy, NJ (1955-1964). In 1965 he was assigned to Holy Cross Hellenic College were he taught from 1965 to 1971. Other parishes include: St. Nicholas in Lexington, Mass. (1965-1967); visiting priest to several parishes in New England, Maryland and New Jersey, such as St. Barbara, Toms River; St. Anthony, Vineland, and Holy Trinity, Bargaintown.
He is a prolific writer and has authored and edited twelve volumes and hundreds of articles which have been published in prestigious publications. Father Demetrios is considered an outstanding theologian internationally and his love for the Greek Studies unsurpassed.
Father Demetrios has lectured and taught in many colleges and universities and has addressed hundreds of gatherings on Byzantine History, the Greek Orthodox Church and Religion in general.
Stella was born in New York in 1928. During the Depression and war years, she lived in Chios and returned to the United States in 1946. They were married in St. Demetrios Church in Jamaica, NY and they have four children: Christine (a graduate of Cook College of Rutgers University), John (a Ph.D. from Duke University), Eleni (a graduate of Colgate University), and Maria ( a graduate of Bergen College and a student at Marymount College).
Father Demetrios served St. Demetrios Parish in Wildwood as an acting Pastor in 1990 and again in 1992 when the regular pastor was on a temporary leave of absence.
Father Steven Vlahos was born in Chicago, Illinios in 1937. He received his B.A. in Theology from our Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology in 1963 and did post-graduate work in Dogmatic and Conciliar Theology at St. John's Roman Catholic College in Little Rock, Arkansas.
Metropolitan Iakovos of the Holy Synod of the Patriarchate ordained him to the Holy Diaconate on September 13, 1964, and the following day to the Holy Priesthood.
In 1971, Ecumenical Patriarch Athenagoris I, bestowed upon Father Vlahos the title of Protopresbyteros of Ecumenical Throne, the highest honor bestowed upon married Orthodox priests.
He served in the parishes of Annunciation, Little Rock, Arkansas; Sts. Constantine and Helen, Rockford, Illinios; St. George, Bethesda, Maryland; and for sixteen years at St. Thomas in Cherry Hill, NJ. On September 8, 1992 he was assigned to our St. Demetrios Parish in Wildwood.
Father Vlahos has written numerous articles, sermons and essays in both Greek and English and served on many committees, commissions and study groups of our Orthodox Church in America.
In addition to his duties as Pastor of St. Demetrios, he has served as Special Deputy Surrogate for Camden County, and Vice Chairman of the New Jersey Board of Human Services.
Presbytera Chrysi (nee Hondroulis) was born in 1944 in Astoria, New York and started her education there. She continued her education at Rutgers University, Camden receiving her B.A. Degree in English and Sociology. They were married in 1964 in St. Sophia Cathedral in Washington, D.C., and they have two children: Demetrios and Dana. Preently, Presbytera Chrysi owns and operates Chrysi's an apparel shop in Cherry Hill, New Jersey.
After 24 years of serving the Wildwood parish, Father Steven retired in February of 2016.