In an inspiring address to a gathering in Chicago of more than a thousand representatives from the various Ladies Philoptochos Chapters from throughout the nation, Archbishop Elpidophoros of America applauded the efforts of the women who have raised millions of dollars over the years for thousands of charitable initiatives.
Philoptochos, meaning “friend of the poor” is the women’s charitable initiative of the Greek Orthodox Church.
With over 400 chapters throughout the nation and tens of thousands of members, the organization’s primary purpose is to raise funds for people less fortunate — often doing fashion shows, holiday parties and bake sales with traditional Greek pastries like koulourakia.
On that note, Archbishop Elpidophoros used the cookie analogy to coin the expression “the koulouraki effect” to explain how significant the work of the women across the country has been and how critical their work is — especially to those in need.
The society was established in November 1931, by then Archbishop Athenagoras, who was then serving as Archbishop of North and South America.
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