Tuesday, July 14, 2015
The Greek Orthodox Section of Greenwood Cemetery in Atlanta, Georgia
ST. BARBARA'S CHAPEL AT GREENWOOD CEMETERY
The Greek Orthodox section of Greenwood Cemetery in southwest Atlanta was formally established in 1911, only 6 years after the founding of Annunciation parish. Due to growing need, by 1928, the Greek Ladies Auxiliary Society (formally called Σύλλογου τών Κυρίων και Αγία Βαρβάρα, or the St. Barbara’s Association), which was the forerunner of our local Philoptochos chapter, made the decision to construct a cemetery chapel. These dedicated women were determined to have a proper place from which to conduct services for their departed loved ones. At the time, Annunciation parish was located downtown, in a renovated Presbyterian church building on Garnett Street at Central Avenue. Our community was still tightly knit, after having weathered World War One and the Venezelist controversy, and our Archdiocese had only been formally established in 1921. Many parishioners spoke Greek-accented English, and widespread assimilation had not yet occurred. The Ladies Society alone was charged with raising all funds necessary for construction, and the group bore full responsibility for any problems arising from construction of the chapel. And still, our ladies proceeded to build this chapel! Imagine what a challenge they faced raising money during those times! A document, signed on June 1, 1928, outlined all the responsibilities that the ladies had taken on, and has been preserved in the Cathedral Archives.