To keep pace with its growing church membership, the Kimisis Tis Theotokou Greek Orthodox Church at 29 Hillcrest Road would like to construct a two-story addition to its church/community center complex for Sunday school, and lay down a second parking lot.
“Our church started construction in 1986, and occupied the church in 1988. At that time, we were under 100 families,” said the chairman of the church’s Expansion Committee, Gregory Ploussas. “We have been able to grow 10 percent a year.” Ploussas said the church now has 450 families, and approximately 200 children, on its membership rolls.
Greek Orthodox churches are scarce in this part of Jersey. The closest ones are St. Demetrios in Perth Amboy, St. George Church in Piscataway, another St. George in Asbury Park and St. Barbara in Toms River.
The project calls for the construction of a 2,912 square-foot two-story addition (or 5,866 if you count both floors) to be erected between the church and the community center, behind the existing administration area of the church. It would not be visible to local street traffic. The exterior would be matching stucco, and the sloped roof will covered with matching asphalt shingles.
Aside from a Greek language class that attracts about 40 students for two weekday sessions, the classrooms are used only for Sunday school, he said.
The church members have raised $60,000 towards the planning process. If variances are approved by the Zoning Board and the church’s General Assembly, the church leaders will seek to raise $750,000 in phases through donations from parishioners make the improvements over a five-year span.