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17443Fwd: [SF] METROPOLIS OF SAN FRANCISCO: Fire damages parish in El Cajon, CA

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  • MIGREEK@...
    Jan 27, 2013
      -----Original Message-----
      From: Metropolis of San Francisco <metropolis@...>
      To: SF <SF@...>
      Sent: Sun, Jan 27, 2013 9:44 pm
      Subject: [SF] METROPOLIS OF SAN FRANCISCO: Fire damages parish in El Cajon, CA


      The Saint Gregory of Nyssa Greek Orthodox Church in El Cajon, CA was the target of arson in the early hours of Sunday, January 27, 2013. The fire originated on the patio area and spread into the attic, causing significant smoke damage to the church and its contents. The church was unoccupied at the time of the fire, and no injuries were sustained.

      A neighbor reported the fire to authorities which took approximately 45 minute to extinguish. The garage on the church premises was quickly converted to a temporary church for this morning’s Divine Liturgy. The damage to the church appears to be primarily structural, but the extent of smoke damage to the iconostasis, Liturgical items, vestments and Liturgical books is not yet known.

      “We are grateful to God for keeping free from danger the faithful of Saint Gregory of Nyssa. It is my hope and prayer that the church facilities and furnishings may be restored in the very near future, allowing the congregation to once again convene for worship in their church home,” stated His Eminence Metropolitan Gerasimos of San Francisco. “The firefighters are to be commended for their swift action, and we are thankful for their safety.”

      The parish was established in 1992, and has been at its present location for six years, under the leadership of Rev. Father Simeon Corona. The community has approximately 80 families and uses a renovated house as their current church facilities. The parish is seeking a temporary location for worship until such time the necessary repairs and remediation to the church have been completed.

      The police have arrested an individual who was under the care and counseling of the parish priest. He was apprehended and charged with arson, hate crime and burglary. Investigators preliminarily estimate the damage to be at least $250,000.

      We urge our priests and communities to contact Fr. Simeon and the leadership of the Saint Gregory of Nyssa to find out their immediate needs to continuing functioning as a parish. As more information becomes available after a more thorough investigation and reports from the insurance company are obtained, the Metropolis will provide follow-up communication with regard to any additional needs of the parish.


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