Evangelos (Kourounis) of New Jersey
Born in New York City on September 20, 1961 to John and Magdalene Kourounis, the Most Reverend Evangelos (Kourounis) attended the Greek-American parochial schools of St. Eleftherios and St. Spyridon in New York City. He enrolled in Hellenic College, in Brookline, Massachusetts from which he graduated in 1983 and then continued his studies at Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology graduating in 1986 with a Masters of Divinity Degree.In 1987-88 he attended the Ecumenical Institute of Bossey of the University of Geneva, Switzerland from which he received a Certificate of Ecumenical Studies.
He was ordained to the Holy Diaconate February 1st, 1987 at the Greek Orthodox Church of St. Eleftherios in Manhattan and to the Holy Priesthood on July 30th, 1989 by Bishop Philotheos of Meloa at St. Spyridon Greek Orthodox Church in Washington Heights.
His Eminence Archbishop Iakovos elevated him to the rank of Archimandrite on March 30th, 1991 at Sts. Catherine and George Greek Orthodox Church in Astoria, New York. He served as Deacon to the Orthodox Center of Ecumenical Patriarchate in Chambesy, Geneva in 1987-1988, as Deacon to Archbishop Iakovos and Assistant Director of Archives of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese in 1988-1989. From August 1989 until September 1993 he served as assistant to the Dean of St. Demetrios Cathedral in Astoria, New York.
Prior to his election to the Episcopacy, Metropolitan Evangelos served as Chancellor of the Diocese of New Jersey from 1993-1999. He served as Director of the Registry of the Archdiocese from 1996 to 2001, and as President of the Spiritual Court for the Archdiocesan District from 1996 until April 2003.
From October 2001 until his election to the Episcopacy, he served as Dean of the Hellenic Orthodox Community of Astoria "St. Demetrios Cathedral".
On April 12th, 2003, upon the recommendation of and nomination by the Holy Eparchial Synod of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, the Holy and Sacred Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople under the Presidency of His All Holiness, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, unanimously elected Metropolitan Evangelos as Metropolitan and Spiritual Leader of the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of New Jersey.
The "Mega Minima" (Official announcement and declaration of the Election) of His Eminence, Metropolitan Evangelos was read on May 9th, 2003 at the Archdiocesan Chapel of St. Paul the Apostle. His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios together with His Eminence, Archbishop Iakovos, His Eminence, Metropolitan Methodios of Boston, His Eminence, Metropolitan Alexios of Atlanta and several other Hierarchs, ordained the Very Reverend Archimandrite Evangelos Kourounis to the Episcopacy on Saturday, May 10th, 2003 at the Archdiocesan Cathedral of the Holy Trinity.
The Enthronement of His Eminence, Metropolitan Evangelos as the Spiritual Leader of the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of New Jersey which include the mid-Atlantic states of Delaware, Maryland, Virginia and the Greater Philadelphia area, took place on Sunday, May 11th, 2003 at the Greek Orthodox Cathedral of St. John the Theologian in Tenafly, New Jersey.
Metropolitan Evangelos succeeds Metropolitan Silas and Bishop George of New Jersey. With the new Charter granted to the Archdiocese by the Ecumenical Patriarchate in 2003, the Diocese of New Jersey, which was established in 1977, was elevated to a Metropolis. Therefore, Metropolitan Evangelos is the first hierarch enthroned as Metropolitan of New Jersey.
The Metropolis is comprised of fifty-four parishes in New Jersey, the Greater Philadelphia area, Delaware, Maryland and Virginia. Archbishop Demetrios stated: "I am sure that by the Grace and strength from God, the new Metropolitan of New Jersey will prove to be a true imitator of our Good Shepherd Jesus Christ and will lead the devoted flock of his God-saved Metropolis to 'springs of living water" (Rev. 7:17).