Reverend Father Allan-Gabriel Boyd
Born in 1960, the son of a deacon, Father Allan-Gabriel was raised in an Protestant Christian tradition and was trained to love the scriptures from the time he was a toddler. After graduating high school, he immediately entered a Christian bible college in Lubbock TX, where he met his future presvytera, Danita, to whom he’s been married since 1981.
Shortly after their wedding, Father Allan-Gabriel found employment with Fleming Foods Grocery Wholesale Warehouse in Phoenix, AZ as a warehouseman and dock foreman, where he remained for 16 years. Later, he went to work for Intel, in one of their semiconductor fabrication plants in Chandler, AZ, as a quartz-clean specialist, where he also served on their Emergency and Medical Response teams. During this time, an Orthodox priest began sending books for him to begin exploring Orthodox Christianity. That initiated Fr Allan-Gabriel's aggressive 6-year scrutiny of Orthodox theology, until finally, in 1998, he and his family requested to become catechumens in the Orthodox Christian Faith.
After a further, year-long catechumenate, experiencing the entire liturgical cycle of the Church’s feasts and a series of classes, he, Danita and their two teenage children, Joshua and Faith, were received into the Orthodox Christian Faith on Lazarus Saturday, 1999.
During his first several years as an Orthodox Christian layman, he served the Church in the roles of Altar Captain; Sunday School Teacher; Parish Council Member; and Radio Show Co-Host—doing Orthodox apologetics on a call-in Evangelical Protestant radio station. In 2003 Father Andrew Barakos, of Assumption Greek Orthodox Church in Scottsdale AZ, sent him to Hellenic College, to pursue undergraduate studies and then a graduate degree. During their time there at the school, Presvytera Danita, used her gifts to initiate a highly successful campus religious education program for the nearly 50 children of seminary students (something that the school had never had before).
While still an undergrad, Father Allan-Gabriel also served for two years as president of the Married Student's Association for both Hellenic College and Holy Cross. There, he and Presvytera Danita worked as advocates for campus family-life issues and the quality of life for the many children on campus.
After graduating from Hellenic College with a Bachelor's Degree in Religious Studies, in 2006, he began attending Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology to pursue his Masters of Divinity. During his time with Holy Cross, he traveled to Albania with an Orthodox Christian Mission Center team. For 2 weeks there, he worked in their Tirana summer-camp employing the use of folk stories to introduce Muslim and atheist children and teenagers to the Orthodox Christian Faith. In the summer of 2008, he spent several weeks traveling through Greece and Turkey, where he visited ancient Christian holy sites, including a 6-day pilgrimage through Mt Athos and a visit with His All-Holiness, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew.
Over the course of his last academic year, Father Allan-Gabriel worked an internship with a street outreach ministry in Boston, helping to feed, clothe and connect the homeless and marginalized with both physical and spiritual resources. After six years in Brookline MA, Father Allan-Gabriel graduated with a Master of Divinity degree on May 16th, 2009, and went immediately to serve Assumption Greek Orthodox Church, in Scottsdale AZ, under the guidance of Father Andrew Barakos, in the role of Lay Pastoral Assistant. In March of 2011, His Eminence, Metropolitan Gerasimos transitioned Father Allan-Gabriel to Los Angeles to begin serving as St Sophia’s Pastoral Assistant. On June 13th, 2011, His Eminence ordained Father Allan-Gabriel to the Deaconate, and then to the Holy Priesthood on July 17th, 2011, where he served as Assistant Priest to St Sophia Cathedral until November of 2015.
Under the wise mentorship of his Proistaminos, Father John Bakas, Father Allan-Gabriel helped pave the way for a widened demographic at the cathedral, where one can now find people from many different cultures, ethnicities and religious origins adorning the community as Orthodox Christians like precious jewels. Fr. John Bakas and Fr. Allan-Gabriel also teamed up on intensive efforts to guide the parish-council and the parish-at-large towards a greater awareness and fulfillment of the Church’s divinely given mission. During his four and a half years there, Father Allan-Gabriel established a “WHYs of Orthodoxy” class, serving as both a class for those who wished to become Orthodox and a place where people who grew up in the Faith could learn more about why we Orthodox Christians believe what we believe and do what we do. In 2013, he was additionally instrumental in starting an “Orthodox Young-Adult Professionals FORUM” ministry, where 20-35 people continued to attend weekly to share a meal together, pray together and strengthen their grip on tools from ancient Orthodox Christianity, to help them navigate and thrive in 21st century conditions.
On December 1st, 2015, Father Allan-Gabriel and Presvytera Danita were assigned to Saint Basil the Great Greek Orthodox Church, in San Jose, California. There, while maintaining leadership in the spiritual and liturgical life of the church, Father Allan-Gabriel began extensive focus on helping to revitalize the care for the temple, which had fallen into extreme disrepair. Under his leadership, they restored the outside of the church to offer a more welcoming curb appeal, remodeled the cry-room, which created an atmosphere to help young families feel more at home. He led efforts to remodel the parish hall and outside courtyard to better accommodate parish gatherings and adult education and finally he helped redesign the parish website toward offering helpful information to non-Orthodox inquirers and added the ability for parishioners to make stewardship offerings and other types of parish donations electronically.
Father Allan-Gabriel and Presvytera Danita’s two children are now in their late thirties. Their son Joshua, a chanter in the Atlanta Cathedral, has given them two granddaughters and a grandson. In December 2020, Father Allan-Gabriel and Prevytera Danita transferred to the Atlanta Metropolis to be near their son and grandchildren and Fr Allan looks forward to building a relationship with this Annunciation family as your Father and Pastor.
Our Archdiocese and Metropolis Hierarchy:
Archbishop Elpidophoros of America
His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros (Lambriniadis) of America, Most Honorable Exarch of the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, is the eighth Archbishop of America elected since the establishment of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese in 1922.
Archbishop Elpidophoros was born in 1967 in Bakirköy, Istanbul. He studied at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki — School of Pastoral and Social Theology, from which he graduated in 1991. In 1993, he finished his postgraduate studies at the Philosophical School of the University of Bonn, Germany, submitting a dissertation entitled, “The Brothers Nicholas and John Mesarites: Defenders of Orthodoxy in the Union Negotiations from 1204 to 1214 (in the historical and theological framework of the era).” He was ordained a Deacon in 1994 at the Patriarchal Cathedral and was thereafter appointed as the Codecographer of the Holy and Sacred Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate.
In 1995, he was appointed Deputy Secretary of the Holy and Sacred Synod. From 1996-1997 he studied at the Theological School of St. John the Damascene in Balamand, Lebanon, where he improved his knowledge of the Arabic language. In 2001, he presented his doctoral dissertation at the Theological School of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki under the title, “The Opposing Stance of Severus of Antioch at the Council of Chalcedon,” earning him a Doctorate of Theology with highest distinction. In 2004, he was invited to Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology in Brookline, MA, where he taught as a visiting professor for one semester.
In March 2005, at the proposal of His All Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, he was promoted by the Holy and Sacred Synod to the position of Chief Secretary and was ordained to the priesthood by the Ecumenical Patriarch in the Patriarchal Cathedral. In 2009, he submitted two dissertations to the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki — School of Pastoral and Social Theology and was unanimously elected Assistant Professor of Symbolics, Inter-Orthodox Relations and the Ecumenical Movement. The dissertations are entitled: “The Synaxes of the Hierarchy of the Ecumenical Throne (1951-2004)” and “Luther’s Ninety-Five Theses: Historical and Theological Aspects. Text – Translation – Commentary.” In 2018, he was elected full professor at the same university, a position he held until his election as Archbishop of America.
In March 2011, he was elected Metropolitan of Bursa, and in August of the same year was appointed Abbot of the Holy Patriarchal and Stavropegial Monastery of the Holy Trinity on the island of Halki. He has served as the Orthodox Secretary of the Joint International Commission for the Theological Dialogue between the Orthodox Church and the Lutheran World Federation and as a member of the Patriarchal delegations to the General Assemblies of the Conference of European Churches and the World Council of Churches. He was the Secretary of the Pan-Orthodox Synods in Sofia (1998), Istanbul (2005), Geneva (2006), and Istanbul (2008). He has been an active member of the World Council of Churches serving on its Central Committee and also serving on its Faith and Order Commission since 1996.
His Eminence Metropolitan Alexios
His Eminence Metropolitan Alexios (Panagiotopoulos) is a bishop of the Ecumenical Patriarchate serving in the United States within the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America. He is primate of the Metropolis of Atlanta which covers the southeastern portion of the United States. Anthimos Panagiotopoulos was born on December 25th 1943, in Patras, Greece. His parents were Spyridon and Angeliki Panagiotopoulos. In 1963, Anthimos was tonsured as a monk of Vatopedion Monastery. He graduated from the Anthonias Ecclesiastical Academy in 1964. Upon his ordination to the Diaconate in late 1965, he served as Archdeacon of the Metropolis of Patras, but later moved to Athens to enroll in the School of Theology of the University of Athens (from which he received a degree in 1973). While enrolled at the university, he served concurrently as deacon to the Athenian churches of St. Panteleimon and St. Spyridon. Deacon Anthimos returned to Patras upon his ordination to the priesthood on Aug 27th, 1972. He became a member of the Gerokomion Monastery of the Virgin Mary, while serving the church of St. Sophia in Patras. Shortly after receiving his degree from the University of Athens, he applied to the Doctor of Ministry program at Boston University's School of Theology. He was accepted and moved to Boston, where he served as Proistamenos of the church of the Dormition of the Theotokos in Burlington, Vermont. Fr. Anthimos received his doctoral degree in 1977 and returned to Patras, where he was appointed Hegumen of the Gerokomion Monastery. He was shortly summoned back to America, however, to become Dean of the Cathedral of Ss. Constantine and Helen in Brooklyn, New York. The following year, he was transferred to Astoria to serve as dean of the combined communities of St. Demetrios and Ss. Catherine and George.On April 7th, 1987, the Holy Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate elected Fr. Anthimos as titular Bishop of Troas. At his consecration on May17th of that year, he was appointed as chorepiscopos (village bishop) of Astoria. (Although this is a former office in Orthodox canon law, in this case the term seems to have been more intended to describe the scope of his responsibilities with respect to the Astoria community.) In 1989, his duties were expanded to include oversight of parishes throughout Queens, Long Island, southern Connecticut, and upstate New York. He was also named as director of the Hellenic Cultural Center, an institution of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America based in Astoria. On Jan 1st 1997, Bishop Alexios was designated as Archepiscopal Vicar for the Diocese of Atlanta, following the death of Bishop Philip. In 1999, Bishop Alexios was elected as the new bishop of the Diocese. At the end of 2002, the Diocese of Atlanta was elevated, along with the other dioceses of the American Archdiocese, to the status of Metropolis, and Bishop Alexios was elevated to the rank of Metropolitan.
His Grace Bishop Sevastianos of Zelon
Bishop Sevastianos was born in Ano-Zodia, Cyprus, he is the first born of three children of Panayiota and Frixos Skordallos. He is a graduate of the Econonic High School, Morphou, Cyprus (1973) and the Theological School of the University of Athens, Greece (1978). He received a scholarship through the World Council of Churches to study in the United States at Columbia Theological Seminary, Decatur Georgia (1982) where he received a Th.M. in Pastoral Psychology. He has worked and received advanced certification in Clinical Pastoral Education at Caraway Methodist Medical Center, Birmingham, Alabama (1980-1982), and furthered his studies in Pastoral Psychology at Vanderbilt University, Nashville Tennessee and Middle Tennessee State University (1982-1984).
He was ordained Deacon on January 17, 1974, by the late Metropolitan of Morphou Chrysanthos and Priest on March 4, 1978 in England by the Bishop of Tropaiou Gregorios who is currently the Archbishop of Thyateira and All England. He received the offikion of Archimandrite by the late Archbishop of Thyateira Athenagoras. He has served several parishes both as a deacon and a priest in Cyprus, Greece and the U.S.
As a Deacon he served the late Metropolitan Chyrsanthos of Morphou (1974), St. George Church, in Akadimia Platonos, in Athens (1975), St. Nicholas Church in Kato Patisia, Athens (1976-78), and as a priest in Nottingham England (1978-79), Holy Trinity-Holy Cross in Birmingham, Alabama, U.S. (1980-82), Sts Constantine and Helen – Holy Cross, Huntsville, Alabama (1982-84, 1989-93), the Cathedral of Panayia Catholike, Limassol Cyprus (1984-88), Holy Transfiguration, Marietta, Georgia (1993-2004), and St. Nicholas Cathedral, Tarpon Springs, Florida (2004-06). He was appointed Chief Secretary of the Holy Eparchial Synod by His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios of America on June 1, 2006, a position that he still holds.
Bishop Sevastianos, has been actively involved in the Administration of the Church in general, and in particular in our Holy Archdiocese, serving as a Council member on the Metropolis and Archdiocesan levels; in the Administration Committee of the Archdiocesan Council where he assisted in developing resources for the training of Parish Councils and in the Legal Committee of the Archdiocese. He has served as President of the Clergy Syndesmos of the Metropolis of Atlanta for several years and the Archdiocesan Presbyters Council.
In early December 2018, His Grace returned to the Metropolis of Atlanta and is assisting His Eminence Metropolitan Alexios in ministering and serving the faithful within the Metropolis of Atlanta.
Charisse Babb, Administrative Assistant:
My name is Charisse Babb. I've lived in Pensacola for a just over one year. My family and I moved here from Daphne Alabama, where we lived for 12 years. I am originally from Utah where I was born and raised. My husband Nathan and I met in North Carolina, where I was working as a flight attendant and he was in the Marine Corps. We moved to Alabama, where he is originally from when he got out of the Marines. Nathan and I have been married for 15 years now and have two wonderful boys. Charlie is almost 9 and Alex is 2. We enjoy going to the beach, being outdoors when it isn't too hot (hard to do in the south) and we love watching our son Charlie play baseball. I love to read, which is not so easy with a toddler but I fit it in where I can.