Sts. Basilios-Gregorios Orthodox Parish Acquires Church Building In North Plainfield, Nj

After 11 years of prayers, planning and hard work, members of Sts. Baselios & Gregorios Orthodox Church (SBGOC) of Central Jersey have accomplished their long-cherished dream: a place of worship, of their own. The first Holy Qurbana at this location will be celebrated by Diocesan Metropolitan His Grace Zachariah Mar Nicholovos on New Year’s Day 2012.

On Monday, December 19, 2011 SBGOC closed the deal to purchase the church building (St. Peter’s Lutheran Church) at 9 Mercer avenue, North Plainfield, NJ from the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). This beautiful facility with 13,000 square feet of enclosed space, includes a sanctuary, fellowship hall, class rooms and office rooms. The building features a steeple bell and many stained glass windows. The life of Christ is depicted on the stained glass windows in the sanctuary.

Sts. Baselios & Gregorios Orthodox Church is a parish in the Northeast American Diocese of the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church. As the Congregation moves into its new home, members are making plans to reach out to the North Plainfield community as well as to other Christian churches in the area.

Members of SBGOC have been worshipping in the Chapel of the New Brunswick Theological Seminary (NBTS) of the Reformed Church of America, since 2000. The congregation has continued to grow steadily under the leadership of its founder Rev. Fr. Dr. Mathew C. Chacko. It is only fitting that the acquisition of a permanent home happens on the 79th birthday of their founder.

The congregation is a vibrant group of families of young professionals, college students, and the young-at-heart seeking to worship according to the Oriental Orthodox tradition and to have fellowship with other Indian Orthodox Christians. They strive to convey their Christian faith, culture and traditions to the more than one hundred children in the community. While they treasure their mother-tongue (Malayalam) and traditions from Kerala, India, they recognize the need to gradually adapt to the changing environment, without forgoing their faith and values. Currently they celebrate Holy Liturgy in Malayalam on most Sundays. On one Sunday a month, the service is offered in English.

The acquisition of the facility in North Plainfield is a glowing testament to the dedication and unwavering commitment of the lay members of the committees over the years and to the strong bond of unity and deep sense of purpose of members of the parish community. The congregation acknowledges with gratitude the hospitality of the New Brunswick Theological Seminary and the Reformed Church of America over the last decade.

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