What is Philoptochos?

Literally, Philoptochos means friend of the poor—not only poor in financial resources but also poor in spirit, poor in health, poor in companionship, poor in emotional stability and poor in whatever is needed to lead a fulfilling life.

Since 1931, when it was established by the late Ecumenical Patriarch Athenagoras I, Philoptochos has been the largest organization of Greek Orthodox women which supports many charities while spiritually enriching its members through their participation in its philanthropic work.

In over 80 years of existence, we can proudly state that Philoptochos is the largest Christian women’s philanthropic organization in the United States.

Philoptochos functions at the local, diocesan, archdiocesan, metropolitan, national, and international levels.

Mission Statement

The Greek Orthodox Ladies Philoptochos Society, Inc. is the duly accredited women's philanthropic society of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America. The mission of the Society shall be:

To aid the poor, the destitute, the hungry, the aged, the sick, the unemployed, the orphaned, the imprisoned, the widowed, the handicapped, the victims of disasters, to undertake the burial of impoverished persons and to offer assistance to anyone who may need the help of the Church through fund raising efforts; and

To promote the charitable, benevolent, and philanthropic purposes of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, through instructional programs, presentations, lectures, seminars and other educational resources;

To preserve and perpetuate Orthodox Christian concepts and the Orthodox Christian Family, and through them, to promote the Greek Orthodox Faith and traditions, in accordance with its doctrines, canons, discipline, divine worship, usages and customs;

To promote participation in the activities of the Greek Orthodox community, with the cooperation of the Parish Priest and the Parish Council.

The charitable work of the Society shall be performed with discretion, courtesy and kindness.

For more information regarding Philoptochos Nationally, log onto

President's Message

Are you interested in working with a dynamic, diverse and determined group of women? Are you the type of person that enjoys helping others? Would you benefit from educational, informative, friendly gatherings? Do you look forward to weekly fellowship, conversation, meeting new parishioners and making friends? If you’ve answered yes to any of these questions, St. Catherine’s Philoptochos may just be the group for you. Your membership and support, along with that of thousands of women from across the nation makes it possible for dynamic philanthropic efforts on a national, regional and local level. Our ever-changing society poses many challenges, but we all know the possibilities and power that can be unleashed when women come together to work on philanthropic projects.

If you’re interested, MEMBERSHIP is available to everyone eighteen years or older whether she/he is an active member, or a supporting member, in this dynamic and growing charitable organization. For additional info, please call Chrissie Rafael at (917) 856- 5650 and Chrissy Zografos at (516) 428- 3428.

What Does Our Philoptochos Do?

St. Catherine’s Philoptochos chapter conducts various fund-raising activities to benefit national, regional, and local philanthropic charities and programs. The following is a list of charities that St. Catherine’s Philoptochos supports.

Click here to download our St. Catherines Scholarship Application for Seniors.


For Our Church:

Bell Tower Fund

Book Club

Christmas Card

Christmas Decorations

Church Dance Journal

Church Name Day Celebration

Coffee Hour

Easter Decorations, Eggs, Epitaphio, Palms

Faith & Fellowship

Festival Pastries

Festival Raffle Prize

Greek School & GOYA Glendi Raffle

Monastery Trips

Oratorical Festival Scholarship Fund

Scholarship for H.S. Senior

St. Catherine’s Name Day Celebration

Vasilopita Luncheon

Visits to the Homebound

Youth Commission


Christmas Angel Program

Coalition Against Child Abuse and Neglect

Glen Cove Youth Bureau

Momma’s House

Long Island Harvest Food Pantry

North Shore Homeless Shelter

North Shore Hospital of Glen Cove Gynecological Exam Room

Norwalk Emergency Shelter School Supplies

Thanksgiving Food Drive

Student Sponsorship for Hellenic College

Saint Philothea Project

Medical Relief:

For several needy patients

Emergency Relief:

Hellenic Fire Fund

Hurricane Disaster Relief

Direct Archdiocesan District Charities:

Clergy Laity Convention Donations

District Olympics

Hellenic Cultural Center

Holy Cross Scholarship

Shop for a Cause

St. Michael’s Home

National Philoptochos Charities:

Academy of St. Basil

Cancer Fund

Cardiac Fund

Children’s Medical Fund

Children of St. Basil Academy

Ecumenical Patriarchate

Founders Fund for the Aging

General Medical Fund

Hellenic College Holy Cross

International Orthodox Christian Charities

Mission Priests

National Philoptochos Emergency Fund

National Sisterhood of Presbyteres Benevolent Fund

Orthodox Christian Mission Center

Retired Clergy Benevolent Fund

Hellenic College Holy Cross Scholarship Program

Social Services

St. Photios Shrine


Patron Saints of Philoptochos

November 1 is the Feast Day of Saints Kosmas and Damianos, the patron saints of Philoptochos.

Kosmas and Damianos were born of wealthy parents and educated in the best schools receiving degrees in medicine. They were apostles of Christ and physicians of both the body and soul, who pledged never to accept payment of any kind for their services. They healed thousands through the miracle of prayer and medicine.
Philoptochos members strive to make a difference in the lives of others, following the example of our patron saints.

Our Philoptochos Board


Congratulations to our new board members:
Sofia Zachariadis, President,
Chryssanthe Rafael, 1st Vice President,
Cheryl Ipiotis, 2nd Vice President,
Chrissy Zografos, Corresponding Secretary,
Stacey Milonas, Recording Secretary,
Maria Verveniotis, Treasurer,
Kay Papantoniou, Assistant Treasurer,
Vasilianna Fakiris, Advisor,
Savvy Asprou, Debbie Catacosinos, Bessie
Nestoras Knoblach, Elena Razis Ljuljic, Maria Phillips,
Angie Sakellarides, and Marika Susi who were all elected
for the next two year term.