JULY 11, 2022 -
"It's like we are children again, walking into a fairy story."
- Jonathan Pageau, interviewing Andrew Gould
Dear parish family and friends of Holy Apostles,
Many of you were not with us at Holy Apostles five years ago, when the Lord sent to our parish one of the greatest living Orthodox architects in America, Andrew Gould. He has designed our parish hall and will also be involved with the design of the interior of our historic chapel. Check out the below videos and learn about the architect and our future parish home.
Beauty and Meaning Today (scroll down to watch this video interview with Andrew Gould, the designer of Holy Apostles' parish hall.)
Andrew speaks of the otherworldly beauty of Orthodox churches throughout time: "The Russians wanted their churches to look like they are not of this world. They are part of the Kingdom of Heaven. They are part of the New Jerusalem. They are of the Kingdom of God. They are like the Ivory Palace."
In his intro to this fascinating conversation, Pageau says, "His work is rich in an exploration of traditional principles coupled with an attention to the particularities of context as well as a hint of fantasy. I explore his approach to creation and his worldview."
Andrew Gould spoke to us in October of 2017, about our storybook historic chapel. The chapel was given to our parish along with 2 acres of beautiful land, in 2009:
For Andrew's architectural work, see here: https://www.newworldbyzantine.com/
To learn more about Andrew Gould's work, scroll down for our special section on him "below the fold."
June 6, 2022: Prince George County approves Site Development Concept Plans, Erosion Control Plans for Parish Hall Building Project
Kimberly Morgan of LandTech (our Construction Engineer) notified us that Prince George County has "approved the Site Development Concept Plans and the Approved 'Black Stamp' Erosion and Sediment Control Plans. Once our mechanical engineer determines the water line size we can submit the WSSC plans for review."
These two site approvals mark a major step forward for our Parish Hall Building Project. You can see the "blueprints" of the approved Concept Plans (8 detailed, oversized pages) and ESC Plans (7 detailed, oversized pages) at church. The example page posted with this story of the Site Development Concept Plans shows the red approval stamp.
Please help us build our new Parish Hall by making a generous donation today! Just use the Donate buttons at right >>--->>
Glory to God as we continue to move towards our groundbreaking in Spring 2023!
APRIL 24, 2022
CHRIST IS RISEN!
We are pleased to announce that our 2022 Palm Sunday Matching Grant Fundraiser exceeded its donations goal by 41%, raising over $60,000 for our Parish Hall Building Project!
We attribute this fundraising success to broad parish support, plus large donations from new donors from outside our parish community.
The Mountain of God in Beltsville, Maryland
Celebrating the 1-Year Anniversary of the premier of this beautiful video!
Watch the video, then scroll down to learn more, and to see how you can help our vision be fulfilled. Use the Donate buttons at right to contribute your gift.
Thank you for your prayers and support!
This video represents the hopes and prayers of the people of Holy Apostles, to establish our parish in its new home in Beltsville, Maryland, from which the parish can continue to thrive and grow, in its soul-saving mission. In order to do this, we need to build our new parish hall, designed by Andrew Gould. Then we can move to the property, and continue the restoration and renovation of the beautiful historic chapel, given to the parish in 2009.
Our prayer is that those who view this video will join us in our missionary work, by praying for us, and by generously donating towards the building of the parish hall.
“May the Lord bless everyone who will contribute to the building of the new parish hall,
and the growth of Christ’s vineyard, in Beltsville, Maryland.”
~ Metropolitan Hilarion,
First Hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia
Watch the video, then scroll down to learn more about the project and Andrew Gould's vision, view architectural renderings, and donate via the buttons at right.
Our three-year Capital Fundraising Campaign for construction of the new Parish Hall on the Chapel Campus continues to grow and expand. Watch this space for important news and updates in the weeks and months ahead as the Parish Hall Building Project moves forward in dramatic and specific ways.
Please use the Donate Button in the right hand panel to make immediate contributions, or the PayPal Button.
To become a sustaining supporter, please fill out and send us the Capital Campaign Pledge Form at right.
We thank you for your prayerful consideration of this appeal.
This section shows recent news and updates in reverse chronological order (most recent at top), with special emphasis on fundraising, where we have experienced dramatic growth year over year.
Help us by donating now using the buttons at right, or by submitting our Capital Campaign form and becoming a Sustaining Supporter:
June 6, 2022: Site Development Concept Plans Approved — Kimberly Morgan of LandTech (our Construction Engineer) notified us that Prince George County has "approved the Site Development Concept Plans and the Approved 'Black Stamp' Erosion and Sediment Control Plans. Once our mechanical engineer determines the water line size we can submit the WSSC plans for review." These two approvals mark a major step forward. You can see the "blueprints" of the approved Concept Plans (8 detailed pages) and ESC Plans (7 detailed pages) at church. One example page of the Site Development Concept Plans showing the red approval stamp is posted on this page. Glory to God as we continue to move towards our groundbreaking in Spring 2023!
May 15, 2022: Parish Hall Building Committee Updates — Two major areas of activity were reported to the parish on Sunday, May 15, after the Divine Liturgy:
- Our Construction Engineer, Kimberly Morgan of LandTech, has been coordinating with our local Architect of Record, Spire Architects, to advance the Parish Hall building plans through the multi-stage approval process.
- We have narrowed our search for our General Contractor to three final candidates; interviews will begin soon.
- Watch for updates on both these important steps.
April 28, 2022: Palm Sunday Matching Grant Fundraiser exceeds goal, raises over $60,000 for New Parish Hall Building Fund. — Our final total donations reached $35,046.95, exceeding our goal by 41%, giving us a final total (including the match) of $60,046.95. This empowers us to continue the pre-construction preparation (building permits, plans, scheduling, etc.), especially our search and selection process for our general contractor, moving us a giant step forward towards our next goal, the actual groundbreaking for the New Parish Hall, which we hope to achieve in Spring 2023. Our thanks to all our supporters, and to the Lord and His Most Pure Mother for this tremendous success.
March 7, 2022: Palm Sunday Building Fund Match Launches, aims to raise $50,000 by April 17 — An anonymous contributor is offering a $25,000 Building Fund match, with the deadline being Palm Sunday, April 17, 2022. Every dollar donated to our building fund during Great Lent will be matched, up to $25,000. Use the Donate buttons in the right side panel or on our Donate page.
February 8, 2022: The 1-Year Anniversary of the premiere of our Parish Hall Fundraising Video— 'The Mountain of God in Beltsville, Maryland' — is the perfect time to reflect on how much progress we've made over the last 12 months, not just in fundraising (over $50,000 in 2021!), but in terms of permits, logistics, meetings with contractors, and positioning us for actual groundbreaking and construction. Watch for more updates coming soon! And take a few minutes to watch (or watch again!) this beautiful video, which so perfectly presents our vision and our hope for the historic chapel and property.
December 4, 2021: Thanks to numerous donors, and a few very generous first-time supporters, we blew past our $6,000 Matching Grant goal, raising a total of $21,029 towards our Parish Hall Building Fund! Glory be to God!
October 23, 2021: Thanks to a generous donor, we launched a new $6,000 Matching Grant Campaign, to raise $12,000 for the Parish Hall Building Fund. The first $6,000 donated to our Building Fund between now and the deadline of December 4, 2021 - the Entrance of the Theotokos into the Temple - will be matched dollar-for-dollar, up to $6,000. This gives us a great opportunity to raise a quick $12,000 for our building fund. Contribute, share the appeal, and pray!
October 23, 2021: Our Building Committee's report, presented to the parish after the Divine Liturgy on Sunday, October 17, 2021, has been posted above on this page in both a continuous slide-show format (with controls to pause and manually advance the slides), and in PDF format for you to download. Watch for more updates soon as we detail where we stand in our journey to build our new Parish Hall and make the move to our new campus.
September 30, 2021: We completed the "RAISE THE ROOF" fundraising campaign, which enabled us to install the new sub-roof for our historic Chapel, and therefore enabled the completion of the roof restoration, which itself was funded by grant monies secured for the restoration of our historic Chapel.
May 22, 2021: We launched a special "RAISE THE ROOF" fundraising campaign, to quickly raise funds to install a new sub-roof for our historic Chapel.
April 25, 2021: We easily exceeded our $12,000 Palm Sunday Match Goal, climbing over $14,000, so with the $12,000 Match we succeeded in raising over $26,000 for the Parish Hall Building Fund! The next three indented entries show how this fundraiser really "took off" and exceeded everyone's excpectations:
April 17, 2021: $2000 added to the Palm Sunday match, making the total match $12,000 — An anonymous donor has come forward to offer an additional $2000 towards our Palm Sunday match, making the new amount for the match $12,000.00. The current balance is $10,247.72, so we still need $1752.28 to make the additional amount, and gain an additional $4000 for the Building Fund.
April 12, 2021: Glory to God, our Palm Sunday match has been met before the deadline, at 103% of the goal! — The total is now at $10,247.72. $10,000 of this amount will be matched, dollar for dollar, by our two anonymous donors, for a total of $20,247.72 to go to our Building Fund, to build our new parish hall.
March 12, 2021: Palm Sunday Building Fund Match Launches, aims to raise $20,000 by April 25 — Two anonymous contributors have gone in together to offer a $10,000 Building Fund match, with the deadline being Palm Sunday, April 25th, 2021.
February 8, 2021: Live Premiere on YouTube and Facebook of our Parish Hall Fundraising Video titled, 'The Mountain of God in Beltsville, Maryland' — This beautifully filmed and edited video, professionally produced by Fr. John Parsells of Orthodox360, was viewed by dozens during its live launch, and by hundreds within a couple of hours of the premiere. Preceded by the recent redesign of our parish website in January, this video launches our Capital Fundraising Campaign out into the wider online world. Our prayer is that those who view this video will join us in our missionary work, by praying for us, and by generously donating towards the building of the parish hall.
October 2020: Matching Grant fundraiser surpasses goal, earns over $10,000 — Two anonymous donors in our parish combined to pledge a $5,000 Matching Grant to spur a 2-week fundraiser, with the deadline for the match on the Feast of the Protection of the Theotokos, October 14. We surpassed our goal and earned the match, bringing in a total of $10,061, kicking off the next phase of our Capital Campaign and funding the production of our Parish Hall Fundraising Video.
Summer 2020: Life under Covid Restrictions — Although many of our parish activities were limited, we were able to hold several of the divine services outdoors at the Chapel Campus. You can see some scenes of one of these beautiful Divine Liturgies in our new Parish Hall Fundraising Video.
November 2019: We have hired a civil engineering company, LandTech, to work with SPIRE Architecture. — Civil engineers are responsible for getting us through all the construction plans (environmental, water and sewer, site development, grading, etc.) and permitting process.At the end of this process, according to Landtech’s timeline by the end of the next year (2020), we should be ready to start building.
November 2019: Shipley and Horn Law Offices has agreed to help us with the permitting and legal processes as needed. And they are willing to donate their services. — Mr. Shipley’s grandfather was one of the builders of St. Joseph’s chapel and is buried in the cemetery.This is one of the wonderful connections we are discovering around our property.
November 2019 - Fundraising Update — Since we officially launched the first stage of our campaign in June 2018, our Building Fund has received close to $100,000.
February 2019: We have hired our local Architect of Record, SPIRE Architecture of Annapolis. — The Parish Hall Building Project requires a local "architect of record" to liase with civil engineers and city/county authorities in order to bring to reality the beautiful design of Orthodox architect Andrew Gould.
On October 11, 2018, through a great miracle, we reached our initial goal: $50,000, enabling us to secure the services of noted Orthodox architectural designer, Andrew Gould! Glory to God!
June 10, 2018: We officially launch our Capital Fundraising Campaign for the New Parish Hall. — This important kick-off event featured a keynote address by noted Orthodox author and speaker Frederica Mathewes-Green, and the public unveiling of Andrew Gould's watercolor of his concept for our New Parish Hall. Scroll down to view the watercolor and learn more...
Octobery 2017: Orthodox architect Andrew Gould visits Holy Apostles, and presents his vision for our new Chapel Campus. — Scroll down for more info on this exciting event, and to watch a 2-part video of Andrew Gould sharing his vision with us after the Divine Liturgy on October 28, 2017...
Watch this space for important news and updates as we press forward towards construction of the new Parish Hall!
Scroll down to learn more about our historic Chapel and campus, architect Andrew Gould's vision for the new Parish Hall, and much more.
Thank you for your support!
Architect Andrew Gould delivered a beautiful watercolor of his concept for our New Parish Hall, just in time for us to display at our Capital Fundraising Launch Event June 10, 2018.
Scroll down to watch a 2-part video of Andrew Gould's talk to our parish in October 2017, where he discusses his vision for our new campus through designs integrated with the style of our historic Chapel, and for his initial architectural drawings for the Parish Hall design.
Our Paradise in Beltsville
We Invite You
to share our vision,
and advance our mission
Background: Our parish was founded in 2001 with the purpose of bringing the Gospel and Divine Services of the Russian Orthodox Church to the people of America in the English language. We are part of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia, under the protection of Metropolitan Hilarion of Eastern America and New York.
We began our parish life in a little house in the woods, our paradise at the beginning. A year later, we moved to our present location, a 1200 square foot rented office park space.
The Chapel and Campus: Through a providential gift in June of 2009, Holy Apostles Orthodox Church became the steward of an historic chapel in Beltsville, Maryland. Situated on two acres of beautiful grounds, in the midst of a parcel of land where President Grant once walked, the chapel is on the National Historic Register. This is our future parish home, which we hope to grow into a divine oasis and spiritual haven for the salvation of many.
The Financial Side: We commissioned an in-depth study of the chapel by an historic restoration consultant, who projected the cost of restoration and renovation of the chapel to be approximately $1,000,000. (This does not include the interior beautification of the chapel.) Since the study, we have made significant progress, securing five grants from the Maryland National Capital Park and Planning Commission Historic Preservation Program, totaling about $250,000 towards the chapel restoration.
In addition, our parishioners have put much hard work into the chapel since 2009. Before it was gifted to us, it had fallen into a state of disrepair, having been boarded up for about 50 years. Gift has been added to gift, and God’s providence has continued to bless our efforts. Now to we are ready to take the next step.
To enable the move to the historic chapel, our plan calls for building a new parish hall on the chapel campus, where we will hold the divine services while we continue to work on the restoration of the chapel. By building the parish hall and vacating our office park space, we will be able to apply that monthly rent amount to our building fund. In addition to the chapel restoration, the cost of building the parish hall is estimated to be approximately $1,000,000.
The Architect: We have secured the architectural design services of Andrew Gould, one of the leading Orthodox Christian architects in America. We have raised the $50,000 necessary to pay his design fees and those of a local architect of record. Having reached this initial goal, we have launched our Capital Campaign to build the parish hall.
Through God’s grace, the history of America is being grafted onto the tree of Orthodoxy in Beltsville, Maryland. It is our heartfelt prayer to be able to build on this foundation that the Lord has laid for us, and to one day see the dedication of the newly restored historic chapel, as Holy Apostles Orthodox Church. We invite you to join us in fulfilling this vision, our paradise in Beltsville.
Mariya’s Letter to Converts
Originally posted October 14, 2018
Our treasurer, Mariya Petrenko, has written a most beautiful and profound letter, addressed to an Orthodox convert, from a cradle Orthodox Christian. With Mariya's permission, we are sharing it with you, here.
We wish to extend our sincere thanks to Frederica Mathewes-Green for helping us launch our Capital Fundraising Campaign on June 10, 2018. Frederica delivered an inspiring talk, 'Towards an Orthodox America', which perfectly resonated with our vision for our English-language Orthodox mission here in Beltsville, Maryland.
Frederica Mathewes-Green is a wide-ranging author and speaker, whose work has appeared in numerous top-tier publications. She has been a regular commentator for National Public Radio (NPR), and has published 10 books to date, including her most recent title, Welcome to the Orthodox Church (Paraclete Press, 2015). She has published over 700 essays, and given over 500 talks...
To learn more, visit Frederica's website at Frederica.com.
View these videos to see the early steps of faith we took in restoring the historic St. Joseph Chapel and preparing to move to our new campus, our gift from God!
NOTE: To contribute to our General Fund, please scroll down...