Outreach & Welcoming


Welcome to

Holy Transfiguration Greek Orthodox Church

Upon entering our beautiful Sanctuary, you will notice that our Church looks and sounds a bit different.  Our services, and indeed the structure of the building, mirror what ancient Christians have experienced since the 4th century after the Resurrection.

Our services are bi-lingual; both Greek and English are used. The original language of the Christian Church was Greek, the language of the Roman Empire. The Gospels and the Epistles were first written in Greek. Greek is still used in the Orthodox Church to preserve and honor the culture which has served as a repository of our Christian Faith and ancient Apostolic traditions for 2,000 years. The Liturgical Texts can be found in the burgundy service book entitled “The Divine Liturgy” and on the yellow placards in the pews.  We invite you to follow along and experience the richness of our ancient and vitally alive Faith.

Blessed Bread (Antidoron) offered at the end of the Divine Liturgy
You will notice our deep reverence for Holy Communion, (the consecrated Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ). As Orthodox Christians, we prepare for Holy Communion by a lifestyle of fasting, prayer, repentance and confession of sins. “Receiving Communion” is reserved for baptized, chrismated and practicing members of the Orthodox Church.  However, we encourage you to join us at the end of service and partake of the Blessed Bread.  You will notice Orthodox Christians are careful not to drop pieces of the Blessed Bread. Join us and partake of the Antidoron!

Coffee Hour
After the Divine Liturgy, please join us for coffee and Fellowship next door in our Parish Life Center (Church Hall).  Give us a chance to meet you!  If you can’t join us today, you are always welcome to join us at a later date.

On behalf of our Parish Family, I welcome you in Christ’s Love,

Rev. Fr. Panayiotis Papageorgiou, Protopresbyter


A few words about our beliefs and practices

Ancient  and  Reverent

The Orthodox Church today is the same church of the Apostles, unchanged in both its teachings and its practices. Upon entering our sanctuary, you will witness the oldest, most reverent form of Christianity. Orthodoxy (Orthodoxia) means “correct belief and worship”. Orthodoxy also adheres to “correct practice” (Orthopraxia). As a community we strive for a lifestyle, which reflects both scriptural doctrine and ancient traditions as set by the Apostles and the ancient Church Fathers.

Historically speaking…

The Apostles ordained the first bishops by “laying on of hands” and the invocation of the Holy Spirit. For 2,000 years Orthodox bishops have adhered to ancient tradition:  (a) all bishops are equal (b) doctrinal decisions are made by a council of bishops (not by one bishop)  (c) doctrinal decisions of the council of bishops must also be received by the entire body of Christians to be implemented (clergy and laity act together led by the Holy Spirit)  (d) the Original Faith, Creed and practices should remain unchanged.

In 1054, when the bishop of Rome broke tradition and insisted upon primacy and complete authority over the Christian Church, the ancient churches of Constantinople, Alexandria, Antioch, Jerusalem and other churches of the East refused to endorse a departure from what was historically established. The Church of Rome went its own way. Then, in the early 16th century Western Christianity began to fracture further as European Christians rebelled against the abuses of Rome, rejected the authority of the Pope over them and formed independent churches (the Protestant Reformation). On the other hand, the Orthodox Church (of all ethnic backgrounds) has remained united in its Faith and Practices to the present!  We are the repository of the ancient Christian beliefs and practices. We are the True Church, the Ancient Church. Our main goal is to lead individuals called by the Holy Spirit, each in his or her own circumstances, into Communion with God and ultimate perfection (theosis).

In case you are wondering, you are welcome to bring along your own national customs and culture; just keep the Gospel of Jesus Christ first and foremost. By all means, ask questions so we can help you to understand our ancient and reverent Faith.


Worship with all the senses:

Let there be Light!
You will notice that we light candles. Candles are an offering to God along with our prayers. When they enter the church, Orthodox Christians usually light two candles, one for the living and one for the deceased, and offer prayers for themselves and their loves ones. The light of the candles symbolizes the light of Christ shining in the world. Join us in prayer and light a candle for yourself and your loved ones.

“Made in the image and likeness of God”
Since God became man and walked among us in the person of our Lord Jesus Christ, we depict Him in His human form in Holy Icons. You will notice that you are surrounded by Holy Icons of Christ and the saints. These Icons are reminders of the ultimate goal of humanity to reach perfection and enter the Kingdom of God. They are “windows into Heaven”. Icons may also be depictions of events from the life of Christ. The Church has also used Icons as teaching tools, proclaiming the Gospel. You will notice that we kiss the Icons; we show honor, reverence and affection to the Lord by kissing his image. We also show reverence to the Virgin Mary (Theotokos=the Mother of God) and other saints by kissing their holy icons, as well. We do not worship the icons or the saints depicted, but only venerate them. Worship is given only to Christ, God the Father and the Holy Spirit.

“An offering of Spiritual fragrance”
Incense has been used in the worship of God since Old Testament times. It has been linked to prayer scripturally in Psalm 141 “Let my prayer rise like incense before you; and the lifting up of my hands as an evening sacrifice.” We use incense as an offering to God along with our prayers, but also as a reminder of the fragrance of the Holy Spirit, which is present in the church where we worship the Lord.

“Singing God’s praises…”
The human voice is at its best in song; voice is the musical instrument created by God. As Orthodox Christians, we lift up our hearts and voices (a capella) as the most ancient and fitting praise of God when we make a “joyful noise unto the Lord” (Psalm 66).

“Taste and See that the Lord is good”
Literally speaking, “Liturgy” means “the work of the people” (i.e., the worship and praise of God Almighty by His people). As such, it is an opportunity to come into the presence of the Divine, to rejoice in God’s love and be in spiritual Communion with Him. The ultimate purpose of the Divine Liturgy is to bring the Kingdom of God into the here and now and make possible for us the physical union with Him when we receive Holy Communion, the Body and Blood of Christ.

An Orthodox Treasure: a Spiritual Elder for guidance

Orthodox Christians have a unique benefit not available in Western Christianity: The Church encourages a pastoral relationship with your parish priest as your  “Spiritual Elder” to both safeguard and enhance your  personal relationship with God (as there are many spiritual pitfalls in modern life).
An experienced Spiritual Elder is needed to guide and ensure that your life is developing as would be most pleasing to God. Some people hire personal trainers—Orthodox Christians have a spiritual trainer—for free! What a blessing! Because Orthodox priests at the parish level can be married, they have a keen understanding of everyday pressures placed on their parishioners. The Orthodox priest cannot only empathize with his parishioners, but also has extensive learning in the Scriptures, the writings of the ancient Church Fathers and modern spiritual ideas. He uses  this knowledge to guide each person who comes to him on their personal journey to God. Through spiritual guidance and the Sacrament of Confession, the Christian has the privilege of an experienced elder committed to his personal spiritual growth. The priest invests his time and knowledge to help the person look at life with “new spiritual eyes”. You may walk-in tired and burdened, but you walk out with joy and lightness of step!

“A servant of Blessings”
You will notice that Orthodox Christians kiss the hand of their priest. This comes from the ancient tradition, still found in the Greek and other ancient Christian cultures, of showing respect to the elders. A child is taught to kiss the hand of their father, mother and grandparents as a sign of respect. We also kiss the hands of our priest out of respect and reverence, because those are the hands that are raised in the Divine Liturgy invoking the power of the Holy Spirit to change the bread and wine to the Body and Blood of Christ. Those are the hands which handle the Body of the Lord and distribute it to us “for the forgiveness of our sins and for life everlasting”. We kiss the hand of our priest in order to receive a blessing!

The priest also blesses our homes. This may take place after Theophany (January 6), but also any other time of the year. When the priest comes to bless our home, he prays and blesses each room, as well as the “prayer corner or home altar” (which is often the home’s spiritual focus). The home altar often features favorite Holy Icons of family members, votive candles and mementos from special services from throughout the year. It may also have the family Bible, photos of loved ones for whom the family often prays and various spiritual books for daily inspiration. The priest is involved in the life of the Christian in many different ways—we don’t just see him on Sunday!  He is truly a Servant of Blessings.

“Ask, and it will be given; Seek, and you will find…”

If you are searching for a new spiritual home, you will find amazing richness in the Orthodox Church, which will greatly expand your concept of Christianity. The Orthodox theological tradition will take you back to the ancient fathers and saints who were instrumental in the original development of the Bible (it didn’t just appear complete in Wittenburg, Germany in the 16th century). The Orthodox Church will also connect you with many saints who have contributed spiritual methods to open the human heart and mind to the Grace of God. Being Orthodox will help you enhance your personal relationship with God through a deeper understanding of the human struggle to renew and restore God’s image in you with the ultimate goal to attain perfection (theosis). You will learn how to do this through spiritual practices (ascesis) like Repentance (Metanoia), the recitation of the Jesus Prayer, Vigilance (Nepsis), Inner Stillness (Hesychia), The Remembrance of God (Mnimi Theou) and Control of Thoughts (Logismoi) which pollute the mind and separate a person from God.

We invite you to stop and think historically and theologically. Examine and experience closely the Orthodox way of life and worship. You have an open invitation to     worship with us and discover Christianity unchanged by time, the Church founded by the Apostles on the authentic teachings of our Lord and God and Savior Jesus Christ still preserved in the Orthodox Church.

“Our cup runneth over!”
What can Holy Transfiguration offer to you and your family? We are brimming with vitality. Here are some of the ministries and activities available to you at Holy Transfiguration: Introduction to Orthodoxy classes, Bible Study (two groups), Religious Education Seminars, Spiritual Book Club, Spiritual Retreats, The Philoptochos Ladies Charitable Society, Orthodox Young Professionals (Pan Orthodox Singles Group), Soup Kitchen for the Needy through local MUST Ministries, Prosforo Bread Bakers, Mommy & Me (young mother’s group), HOPE (K-2nd grade), JOY (3rd-5th grade), GOYA (6th-12th grade), Oratorical Festival (for youth), Sports Teams, Prime Timers (for members 50 yrs & active!), Choir, Men’s Byzantine Choir, Liturgical Cantors, Altar Servers, Coffee Hour/Fellowship Hour, Iconography Workshops, Summer Camp, Hellenic Studies (to learn the Greek language), Hellenic Dance (to learn Greek Folk dances) and finally, our fabulous annual Marietta Greek Festival.