Attorney Alexander Maillis becomes first Bahamian Clergy of the Greek Orthodox Church

The content originally appeared on: ZNS BAHAMAS News
Archbishop Elpidophoros of America and Deacon Alexander Maillis are photographed with the young boys of the church, who dive for the ceremonial cross and for honour each year during Epiphany celebrations

The Greek Orthodox Church in The Bahamas is celebrating the ordination of the first Bahamian clergy member in the history of the church. Attorney Alexander Maillis was officially ordained into the Diaconate in a glorious ceremony on Sunday, February 25, 2024 in the church sanctuary on West Street, Nassau. His Eminence, Archbishop Elpidophoros of America travelled from New York to Nassau with a delegation to lead the Holy Sacrament of Ordination service.

Deacon Alexander and his wife, who now bears the title Diakonissa Panayiota (Patricia) welcomed family, friends, fellow parishioners and the public to the church service and banquet with open arms and an outward profession to welcome new people to worship. 

A memento of the event from the Maillis’ was inscribed with a scripture taken fromGalatians 3:29: “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.”

Since the cornerstone of the church was laid in 1937 to the present day, this is the first time that a Bahamian has been ordained to the official clergy. Maillis was baptised in the church as a baby and has grown up in the church, in which he will now serve as deacon. 

Father Irenaeus Cox, parish priest, also assisted in leading the service, along with local and visiting clergy including: Rev. Protopresbyter Father Elias Villis, Chancellor of the Archdiocesan District; Rev. Fr. Demetrios Kazakis; Rev. Archdeacon Dionysios Papiris; Rev. Dn. Salvatore Fazio; Rev. Dn. Tikhon Cobb and others.

This is Archbishop Eplidophoros’ second time visiting The Bahamas. He and a delegation traveled to the country in the aftermath of Hurricane Dorian bringing supplies and offering humanitarian aid, to assist the local church in its efforts to bring relief to those most affected. 

The Greek Orthodox Church in Nassau is home for a number of  cultures, including members of the Indian Orthodox faith, as well as Egyptian, Russian, Ukrainian, Serb, Ethiopian, Cuban and others. During Sunday mass, the Lord’s Prayer can be heard beautifully sung in nine different languages, to ensure that all cultures represented have the opportunity to worship in a way most meaningful to them. Services are held at the West Street sanctuary at 8:30am and 10am each Sunday. 

Source: Felicity Darville

More photo highlights below:

Archbishop Elpidophoros officially declares Alexander Maillis a deacon during an illustrious ceremony at the Greek Orthodox Church, NassauAlexander Maillis bows as his head is covered in a shroud during his ordinationArchbishop Elpidophoros and Deacon Alexander Maillis (center) pose with family, friends and other parishioners in the Sanctuary of the Greek Orthodox Church, Nassau, The BahamasArchbishop Elpidophoros of America blesses Deacon Alexander Maillis during his ordination