Thirteen people gathered around a kitchen table to share their ideas of starting a Greek Orthodox Church in the Lake Norman area on September 20th of 2004. At the time, there were two other Greek Orthodox Churches in the Charlotte area, but the 30-60 minute drive made it a challenge to actively participate in the life of the Church. It was at this first casual meeting that a decision was made to form an official committee to pursue the possibility of bringing Orthodoxy to the Lake Norman area.
After procuring a census report the team reconvened on October 4, 2004. The census report indicated that there were a number of families of Greek and Russian descent in the area. The team canvassed the phone book and personally called over 100 families to determine whether there was enough interest to begin the formation of a Church. These calls indicated that many families were not attending church at all due to the distance to the Charlotte Churches. Approximately 55 of these families showed significant interest in the idea of forming a church in this area. This provided the encouragement needed for the committee to move forward.
Fr. Demetrios Kangelaris (Presiding Priest of Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church in Winston Salem, NC and Vicar of the NE Conference of the Atlanta Metropolis) provided invaluable guidance in the preparation to make a formal request of the Metropolis to form a Church in our area. Representatives of the team met with His Eminence, Metropolitan Alexios, and his Chancellor, Fr. George Tsahakis on January 21, 2005. Metropolitan Alexios enthusiastically embraced the idea. He provided the approval that had been sought and appointed a Parish Council. The name of the Church, St. Luke, was officially bestowed on June 11, 2005.
After securing the donation of a temporary facility, the first Liturgy was celebrated on August 20, 2005. Families gathered at this location for nearly two years. Initially, Divine Liturgy was celebrated on Saturday evenings and His Eminence assigned various Priests each week as their schedules and other duties permitted.
Encouraged by the robust participation in the burgeoning life of St. Luke, early in 2006, the team petitioned His Eminence for Sunday Liturgies in order to take the next step in their journey. The humble parish was blessed to receive the assignment of an interim full-time, retired priest to celebrate Sunday Liturgies, begin Bible studies, and perform the Sacraments. Several catechumens were brought into the faith during this time as families joined together in Orthodoxy.
By May, 2007 having outgrown the original facilities, the families of St. Luke collectively moved to a larger facility, our current location on Talbert Pointe Road. The front 10,000 square feet of this building became our new home. Liturgies were celebrated in a simple and open area which today has been beautifully redecorated and serves as our Social Hall.
Witnessing the joyful growth in families and faith of St. Luke over those two and a half years, Metropolitan Alexios blessed our small community with the assignment of a full time priest in March, 2008.
Nearly four years after the first Liturgy, in December 2009, with great appreciation given to the original, appointed Parish Council, the first ever elected St. Luke Parish Council members were sworn in.
Building requirements set forth by the Town of Mooresville Fire Marshall in March 2010 created an urgent need and a significant catalyst to expand our spatial needs. The dedicated and faithful families of St. Luke collectively donned painting clothes, wielded carpentry tools, and worked exhaustively to create the beautiful Sanctuary you see today in an unused storage area of the same building. We now occupy over 21,000 square feet of this facility. The expansion allowed St. Luke to install the current Iconostasion generously donated to us by St. Nektarios Greek Orthodox Church in Charlotte.
St. Luke is currently home to over 90 families, representing a diverse set of Orthodox cultures and inter-faith marriages. During Divine Liturgy, we recite the Lord’s Prayer in Greek, Slavonic, Arabic, Spanish, and English. While our church is under the jurisdiction of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, people from all cultural, ethnic, and religious backgrounds are welcome to attend our services and be a part of our growing family.
Without the vision, determination, dedication, love, and support of the original thirteen, and all those who have lovingly and faithfully taken up the banner of St. Luke, we would not have grown in both size and faith to where we are today. We are eternally grateful to everyone’s guidance, trust, and persistence! Above all, we thank God for bringing us all together to build this amazing legacy for our children and all who follow us.
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