Fr. Nicholas J. Magoulias
The Reverend Nicholas J. Magoulias was born in Cincinnati, Ohio on October 11, 1931. The youngest of ten children, he is the son of the (late) Reverend John Efstratios and the (late) Constantina (Dounias) Magoulias. His early schooling was in Cincinnati, Ohio and Decatur, Illinois where he excelled in football and basketball. Summer employment during those years was splitting rails for the Wabash Railroad. Father Magoulias completed his higher education at Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Theological School in Brookline, MA and graduated in June, 1957 with a Bachelor of Divinity Degree. He was a member and later served as coach of the basketball team at the seminary. While pursuing further studies at Wayne State University in Detroit, MI, he was also employed as the Assistant Superintendent of the Sleeping and Dining Car Department of the New York Central Railroad System.
On January 16, 1960 he married the former Marilyn J. Contas of Chestnut Hill, MA. He and Presvytera Marilyn, a retired kindergarten and first grade public school teacher, are blessed with two adult children: Jonathan Peter, a writer; and Carolyn Contas, a kindergarten teacher. In April 1960, three months following their wedding, His Eminence Archbishop Iakovos summoned Father Magoulias to prepare for immediate ordination. Four days later, on April 24, 1960, he was ordained into the diaconate in Manchester, NH; and on the following Sunday, May 1, 1960, he was ordained into the priesthood at the Church of Saint Paul, Hempstead, NY amid the frenzy of countless pilgrims who had come from near and far to venerate the weeping icons.
Upon his ordination into the priesthood, Father Magoulias was immediately given the responsibility of assistant priest at Saint Paul and the youth programs. During those years membership in the Junior GOYA increased immensely; and multi-faceted programs and activities were organized. Father Magoulias was responsible for trips to Holy Cross Seminary, Saint Basil's Academy, Saint Michael's Home for the Aged, Radio City Music Hall, Broadway plays and sports events.
In 1963, Father Magoulias was delegated to be transferred and assume pastoral duties at the newly formed parish of Saint Luke in Broomall, PA. However, the assignment was not meant to be! After being tendered many farewell dinners and receptions, in the early hours of the designated day of departure, he was informed that he was to remain at his beloved Church of Saint Paul and assume the pastorship. In 1988, the Church of Saint Paul was proclaimed the Cathedral of Long Island and he was elevated to the office of Dean. He also was given the title, with distinction, of "Prothierefs", first among priests.