“Mother tongue and national church, what else is a better
reason for our struggle to save the Bulgarian national
Luben Dimitrov, MPO President
Article in Macedonian Tribune newspaper, 1944
The church congregation of Holy Trinity has a history, rich in events and traditions. It is an affirmation of the patriotic spirit and the fidelity to canonical purity of all its founding members.
The parishioners are true followers of their forefathers, always grateful for their heroic struggles and for their determination to maintain the vitality of our cultural and religious traditions.
The predecessor of the congregation of Holy Trinity is St. George Macedonian-Bulgarian Eastern Orthodox church, founded in 1940 by the Very Reverend Vassil Mihailoff.
Holy Trinity Macedonian-Bulgarian Eastern Orthodox Church was founded on October 22, 1973 and was placed under the protection of the Russian Church in Exile. Father Vassil Mihailoff was the parish priest of Holy Trinity until his death in 1981. He was beloved and respected by all in the parish. There were approximately 300 founding members.
On November 30, 1973 the Holy Trinity Religious and Educational Centre Trust Foundation was established. It started with zero financial capital and quickly collected forty-six thousand dollars in donations from devoted parishioners. The Declaration of Trust defines the objects of the trust in these terms:
The purpose for which the Trust Estate and the income thereof to be applied are for charitable, religious and educational purposes namely:
The construction and operation of a religious and educational centre for Macedonian-Bulgarians of the Eastern Orthodox faith;
The carrying on of religious education with respect to the Eastern Orthodox faith;
The carrying on of education with respect to the history of the Macedonian-Bulgarian people;
The publication or dissemination of books, pamphlets, films and all other suitable media with respect to the foregoing.
In 1976 the Anglican church of the Holy Nativity on 201 Monarch Park Avenue was purchased for $350K with most of the money donated by the parishioners. A significant part (around $40K) came from selling a previously bought property on Warden Avenue. The church was consecrated as Holy Trinity.
The parish made major renovations and adaptation to the eastern-orthodox rite. Engineer George Simeonov was hired as General Contractor and a major organizational contribution was provided by Chris Kizoff. Funds for the iconostasis (built and painted by Nicola Kovatchev), for new windows, banners and church accessories was donated by devoted parishioners:
Nikola Shaikov, Nick Stefanoff, Larry Koroloff, Lambro Lazar Koroloff, Boris and Slavka Dimitroff, Done and El. Chalev, Sofa and Mary Velkov, Nick, Luba, Steven Velkov, Phillip and Dimana Vouchkoff, Pando and Dafina Pereloff, Pencho and Christina Hr. Pereloff, Ivan and Verka Simeonoff, Decho Balkanoff, Stoian and Luba Tanousheff, Stefan and Todor Malinoff, Nikola and Dita Mihailoff, Spase and Zorka Ouslis, Zoe Dane Perova, Lazar and Jivka Tzafaroff, Maria Pencho Novachkova, Kiril and Columbia Mihailousheff, Krystiu and Vangelia Dzundzuroff. Spas Zapreff, Bob and Olga Kelly, Reverend and Prezbithera Vasil and Raina Mihailoff, Stoia Pavlova, Dimitar and Fana Atzeff, Kiril and Venera Argiloff, Assen and Frida Kotzeff, Atanas and Maria Ikonomoff, Toshko Tzilev, Limonka and Nikola Boiadjiev, Lazar and Kitza Korolov, Stoian and Sofia Peikos, Vangel and Elenka Vouchkoff, Gicho and Tamy Goulin, Panaiot and Dotza Boichevski.
The Kolaroff family donated the leading wall icon of the Holy Trinity in remembrance of their parents Elia and Sofia Arabadjieff and Vasil and Sofia Yancoff.
In August 1981 the parish priest died and no Macedonian-Bulgarian priest could be provided by the Russian Church in Exile.
In March 1982, the parish voted for secession from the Russian Church in Exile. Holy Trinity joined the Bulgarian Diocese. A Bulgarian priest, the Very Rev. Blagoy Chiflyanov was appointed by The Holy Synod on the request by the parish.
In August 1992, Father Chiflyanov retired and was replaced by the Very Reverend Krustan Vukashinov. Father Chiflyanov continued to function as an auxiliary priest on occasions.
In 1996 large reproductions of frescoes with scenes from the Bulgarian religious history were commissioned with funds donated by parishioners:
Assen Kotzev and family, Donna and Ray Newman, Mrs Dina Florinov, Florence Marks, Zonka Angelova, Eleonora, Dimitar, Jordan and Anete Dimitrov, Boris, Zora, Anthony, Daniel and Ivan Argiloff, Chris and Kathy Torbar, Jim and Dita Ouslis and family, Olga and Bob Kelly and family.
The mortgage on the church property was paid off in 1999.
From 2007 to the present major renovations of the church hall and facilities have been undertaken with active participation of parishioner volunteers:
Jean Hérvieux (project manager and chief-technician), Milka Mihailoff, Atanas Gessov, Done Chaleff, Oleg and Nikolas Batov, Rossen Guentchev, Nick Stefanoff, Vassil Popvassilev, Fred Mehanchoff and many others.
Past presidents of the Church Executive:
Nikola Boyadjieff, first President 1973-1981
Damian Gouleff 1981-1985
Philip Meanchoff 1985-1992
Bob Kelly, 1992-1998
George Varadeff, 1998-2002
Nikola Boyadjieff, 2002-2006
Nick Stefanoff, 2006 - present