Greek Orthodox
Church of the Assumption

1804 13th Avenue | Seattle, Washington 98122
Parish Office Hours - Mon-Thurs 11:30 am - 6:30 pm
206-323-8557


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Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America
Metropolis of San Francisco
Orthodox Christian Mission Center
St. Catherine Philoptochos
           


Regular Schedule

Sunday & Holy Days
8:45 a.m.
Orthros (Matins)
10 a.m.
Divine Liturgy
Saturday
4 p.m.
Vespers

Visitors’ Guide:
What to expect?

(click here)

STUDIES IN ORTHODOX CHRISTIANITY
Click here
for Fr. Dean’s
class materials

Pandemic Announcements
From Fr Dean
(scoll down for all)

Services Sign-Up via SignUpGenius (click here)

Weekly Calendar (click here)

Due to COVID-19 pandemic restrictions, and recommendations from Met. Gerasimos, services are restricted to 40 persons.

If you are unable to attend a service in person, please click here to link to the service via our live stream.


Reception of the Eucharist
shared on Tuesday 11 August 2020

click here to watch Fr. Dean’s video

Considering the Corona Virus, I want to take this opportunity to address a concern regarding the use of the common spoon and chalice to distribute the sacrament of Holy Communion. Some parishioners have expressed a level of concern, or perhaps fear, associated with the reception of the Eucharist with the common spoon given how contagious the virus is. Please know that if you are experiencing hesitation or fear, that is OK. I do not want you to think that your faith is week or to feel ashamed for feeling this way. Nor do I question your sincerity of faith and devotion to the Lord. I want to acknowledge your concern in a healthy way and to support you in your journey of faith.

I just want to share some information with you to help you understand how the use of the spoon came about. Before the twelfth century, most everyone attending a Liturgy received communion as the clergy currently do; the body and blood of our Lord were received separately. Orthodox Christians would approach to receive communion with their right hand over their left, with palm opened. The priest would then place a small portion of the body of our Lord into the communicant's hand. Immediately after, the Deacon would then offer the chalice to the communicant for the reception of our Lord's blood.

The use of Liturgical spoons began to occur only locally in the sixth century. By the twelfth century the use of the liturgical spoon was commonplace. The reason for this change in how communion was distributed was primarily due to the lack of clergy. By the twelfth century, most parishes were served by a single priest, without a deacon, which made the distribution of the body and blood of our Lord separately problematic.

Please note, that prior to the use of the spoon was the use of the common cup. Therefore, returning to the practice of how communion was distributed in the early Church would not alleviate the concern of common Liturgical implements used to distribute communion.

What is it that we as Orthodox Christians believe communion to be? For us as Orthodox Christians, the bread and wine become the body and blood of our Lord. Yes, the bread and wine maintain their physical properties, and while acknowledging this, when we partake of them, we receive the true body and blood of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. During the Liturgy, when the priest chants, "Take eat: This is My Body which is broken for you, for the remission of sins. Drink of this all of you, this is my Blood of the New Covenant which is shed for you for the remission of sins." When the priest chants these verses in the Liturgy, he is affirming what the Orthodox believe, that the bread and wine is the body and blood of our Lord, God and Savior, Jesus Christ. That being the case, Holy communion can never be a vehicle through which illness is transmitted.

Remember, the Church has distributed Holy Communion throughout the centuries using either a common cup or common spoon. Throughout the pandemics of the ages, the reception of communion has never been a problem. Even more recently with tuberculosis, the flu pandemic in the early 1900's, polio, AIDS, and the multiple flu pandemics, there has never been transmission of illness via the chalice. Even my own experience gives testimony to this. As a priest for almost twenty-nine years, I have celebrated fifteen hundred Sunday Liturgies (not including weekday Liturgies) and after each Liturgy, I've consumed what remains in the chalice, using the common spoon, and I have never become ill from doing so.

So, the question remains, what if I am afraid to receive Holy Communion for fear of disease. My brothers and sisters in Christ, the only way to overcome this fear is to partake of the Holy Eucharist. Holding this fear, while receiving Holy Communion, is the only way to alleviate the concern surrounding illness and the reception of the Eucharist. It just like St. Peter stepping out of the boat amid the storm. St. Peter held his fear with action. We are invited to do the same.

I acknowledge it is not easy as fear can be a powerful force controlling of our behavior, but it is vital that we do so. Our Lord Himself said, "He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life...and abides in Me and I in him." (St. John 6:54, 56) Because of these words of our Lord the Christians in the early Church regarded Holy Communion as the first Christian duty simply because, based on the words of our Lord Himself, we cannot inherit eternal life apart from the Liturgy.

Hence, my brothers and sisters in Christ, if we fear reception of the Eucharist, please share your fear with me. I will hold it with you and, as you desire to receive Holy Communion, I will walk the journey with you that all of us together may receive the blessings of our Lord's heavenly kingdom, the promised land of God.


Updated Invitation: Liturgy Sign-Up via SignUpGenius (click here)
shared on Wednesday 29 July 2020

Dear Beloved Parishioners,

I pray that this finds you and your families well and enjoying the blessings of this beautiful summer day.

We would like to take this opportunity to forward you an updated invitation to sign-up for Liturgy via SignUpGenius (click here).

In case you are not aware, just a few updates:

    • The restriction of attending just one Liturgy a month has been lifted. You may sign-up for as many Liturgies as you like. You may sign-up via our SignUpGenius website (click here).
    • There is a question regarding the attendance at Liturgy of those who are at high risk for contracting COVID. If you are sixty-five years of age or older and / or you have underlying health conditions that would place you in a high-risk category for contracting COVID, you are still welcome to attend Liturgy. We just want to make you aware that a COVID outbreak is possible at any time and to know the risks before attending services.
    • Please remember that watching services at home is a concession due to the current COVID pandemic. Although we will continue to stream our services on-line once this pandemic is over, the expectation will be that, once the pandemic is over, the priority for all parishioners will be to attend Liturgy. The on-line stream will be primarily for those who are shut-ins, or due to extenuating circumstances, not able to be physically present at Liturgy.

God bless you and your families and keep you safe as we continue to navigate this pandemic with peaceful hearts and an abundance of thanksgiving for all our Lordís blessings.

My thoughts, love and prayers walk with you and your families always.

In Christís Service,
+Fr. Dean Kouldukis


Liturgy Update
shared on Wednesday 15 July 2020

Dear Beloved Parishioners,

I pray that this finds you and your families well and enjoying the blessings of this beautiful summer day.

As we continue to walk this COVID pandemic journey, just a few reminders and updates:

Due to the light response for Liturgy attendance, the one Liturgy per month restriction is being lifted. We may have to reinstate the restriction beginning in September, but for now, you may attend as many Liturgies as you wish. Please remember to use SignUpGenius (click here).

We are inviting you to attend another town hall meeting to take place via Zoom tomorrow evening beginning at 7 p.m. The purpose of the meeting is to share with you the steps we are taking to accommodate your Church attendance given the COVID pandemic. It is also an opportunity for us to have a dialogue regarding any questions that may be asked. (The Zoom invitation information was sent in an email.)

Please remember that by signing up to attend services, you are affirming that:

    • You or a member of your household is not currently ill or experiencing COVID symptoms
    • You agree to abide by the social distancing and safety guidelines as being practiced by our parish
    • You acknowledge, that while the recommended CDC, state and local county safety measures are being taken by the Church, the parish cannot guarantee that there is no risk of infection for attendees

Upon arriving at the Church, health screening questions will be asked by the ushers for those planning to attend services.

If you do not agree with the above, we ask that you remain at home to participate in the live-streaming of our services (click here). In addition, if you are sixty-five, or older, or have underlying health conditions, we encourage you to refrain from attending services and invite you to join us via our live stream.

God bless you and your families and keep you well.

My love and prayers walk with you all.

In Christís Service,
+Fr. Dean Kouldukis


Church Service Reservation System
shared on Tuesday 7 July 2020

Dear Beloved Parishioners,

Greetings in the Lord! We pray that our e-mail finds you and your families well and enjoying the blessings of the day.

As you may be aware, King County is now in phase two of the states re-opening plan, hence, we started a partial re-opening of our parish onSunday, July 12th. As is required by the State, we will be keeping track of attendees, on any given Sunday, through a reservation system. This tracking is necessary to facilitate contact of attendees should anyone be exposed to COVID while at Church.

Due to social distancing requirements, in conjunction with the capacity of our nave, we will be able to accommodate forty parishioners at each Liturgy. This means that not every parishioner will be able to attend every Sunday. Hence, for now, we ask that you sign-up to attend only one Sunday Liturgy per month. There are no restrictions on how many weekday Liturgies a person may attend.

For those parishioners with computers, you will receive an invitation via SignUpGenius (click here). You will be able to select the Sunday and weekday Liturgies you would like to attend. Just as a friendly reminder, each family member must be signed up individually. Households, however, will be seated together.

For those parishioners not able to make a computer reservation, those parishioners may call Penny Peppes at 425-503-3421. Penny will assign you a slot. Please remember, if a specific Sunday is full, Penny will offer you a first available slot on the first available Sunday.

Finally, by signing up to attend Liturgy you are affirming the following:
    • That you, or anyone in your household, is not currently ill or experiencing COVID symptoms.
    • That you, or a member of your household, to your knowledge, has not been in contact with anyone who has tested positive for COVID, in the last fourteen days.
    • That you agree to abide by the social distancing and safety guidelines as being practiced in our parish.
    • While the recommended CDC, state and local county safety measures are being taken by the Church, the parish cannot guarantee that there is no risk of infection for attendees.

If you are sixty-five years of age or older and/or you have underlying medical conditions, or if you do not agree with the above statements, we ask that you remain at home to participate in the live-streaming of our services (click here).

You may sign up using SignUpGenius (click here).

Please remember, you will need to bring a mask. Your mask must always be worn in Church, except for when the reception of the Eucharist occurs. Ultimately, the wearing of a mask is an expression of love for those attending Liturgy with you. Wearing of masks, social distancing and hand washing will help to ensure all Liturgical participants will remain safe. Father Dean will offer further direction regarding your mask prior to the distribution of communion.

Please let us know if you have any questions.

Looking forward to worshiping with you unto the glory of God!

In Christís Service and Love,
+Fr. Dean
Niko Pamboukas, Parish Council President
Penny Peppes, Parish Reopening Team


Partial Opening of Our Parish - Sunday, July 12th
shared on Tuesday 30 June 2020

Greetings Everyone,

We pray that you and your families well on this feast day of the Twelve Holy Apostles.

As you may be aware, we are working toward the partial opening of our parish, to take place on Sunday, July 12th. This is a partial opening of our parish due to the limited number of parishioners who will be able to attend each Liturgy. In addition, fellowship hour, and meetings that would normally take place after Liturgy on Sunday, and during the week, will not occur at this time.

Please take the time to review this outline (click here) of what you can expect when attending Liturgy.

In preparation for your attendance and participation at Liturgy, we would like to invite you to attend a “Town Hall Meeting” scheduled for this coming Thursday, July 2nd, from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. The purpose of this Zoom gathering is to give you the opportunity to ask questions and to share your thoughts and concerns.

Zoom meeting information and link was sent to parishioners via email

It is with great joy and anticipation that we will be able to once again, even if on a limited basis, celebrate Liturgy together as a Christian family.

Looking forward to our conversation this coming Thursday.

+Fr. Dean Kouldukis
Niko Pamboukas, Parish Council President


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