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LOMBARD, IL, July 8, 2024 – Since their retreat in January, the members of the Metropolis Council and staff have been engaged in designing a series of initiatives and programs to realize the Vision for Growth, the Metropolis of Chicago’s long-term vision for its parishes, institutions, ministries, and people. The initiatives will be fully unveiled in late Q3 or early Q4 of 2024.

While the initiatives are meant to address various needs on the parish level, they also are intended to revitalize parish life and ultimately expand the number of believers in the Church. 

“We, as members of the Metropolis Council, understand and are motivated by what can be achieved for our parishes and communities through the Metropolis’s Vision for Growth. The level of time, talent, and treasure that is being committed to our Vision for Growth initiatives has been nothing short of inspiring and I’m proud to be part of this work and this Metropolis Council,” said George Lattas, First Vice President of the Metropolis Council. 

As a result of a year-long dialogue with clergy and lay leaders, His Eminence Metropolitan Nathanael identified five core priorities that undergird the Vision for Growth which was first unveiled at the 2023 Clergy-Laity Assembly last October. The five core priorities will be realized through the following initiatives: 

  1. Developing Clergy: The Metropolis will establish and enroll 10 priests in a clergy wellness program by July 31, 2024. A Vicar of Clergy Care ultimately will be appointed to oversee the mental, emotional, physical, social, and financial well-being of the Metropolis clergy so they become better spiritual fathers. 
  2. Supporting Parishes: The Metropolis will create a training and education program for the purpose of improving the efficiency and creating a culture of servant leadership among all parish councils. Under the program, eight parish councils will be enrolled by October 1 and all other parishes will be enrolled by December 31. Separately, the Metropolis also will enroll eight parishes by December 31 to better understand and define the individual characteristics of parish vibrancy. Once finalized, a parish vibrancy assessment tool will be rolled out to all parishes to augment the spiritual experience in parishes and identify areas of improvement. 
  3. Expanding Philanthropy: The Metropolis will distribute two million meals to disadvantaged populations by December 31. For context, the Metropolis distributed more than one million meals from January 2020 to December 2023.
  4. Increasing Engagement: The Metropolis is collecting and analyzing the catechism programs used within its parishes by December 1. Once this process concludes, the Metropolis will create a best-in-class catechism program to create a consistent experience among all catechumens of all parishes. 
  5. Fueling Growth: The Metropolis will raise $1 million in recurring gifts by December 31 to sustain and grow Vision for Growth initiatives and other Metropolis needs. Additionally, the Metropolis will establish a parish debt elimination policy by December 31. Once the criteria are identified and the policy is approved, parishes will submit applications for partial or full elimination of debt. 

“The work related to our Vision for Growth, to which so many have tirelessly devoted themselves, is premised on the truth that a good life is one that serves the other through Christ. As a people of faith, there is no greater achievement than existing and acting as the Body of Christ. As Metropolitan, I am excited that this remains our present focus as well as desired outcome,” said His Eminence Metropolitan Nathanael. 

To date, 100 percent of the members of the Metropolis Council have made annual financial contributions to the Annual Vision Campaign above and beyond donating their professional time and talent on a continuous basis. For more information about the Vision for Growth, visit the Metropolis’s webpage HERE


About the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago 

Tracing its roots back to the early 1920s, the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago is the bishopric of Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, northern Indiana, and central Missouri, consisting of 58 parishes and two monastic communities. The Metropolis is one of nine eparchies in the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America and is presided over by His Eminence Metropolitan Nathanael of Chicago. The general offices of the Metropolis are temporarily located in Lombard, Illinois. For more information and to get involved, visit our Metropolis website and/or sign up to receive Metropolis news. For further information, contact the Metropolis of Chicago at: or 312-736-2280.