Chicago worshipers launch last-ditch effort to save historic Greek church

An historic Chicago church is just days away from being sold.

Worshipers are praying this season of giving grants them a miracle to keep its doors open.

"The auction date is set for December 14. We are hoping for a Christmas miracle,” said Stanley Andreakis.

It will take a miracle, or nearly $8 million to save the church that has been home to thousands of Northwest Side Greek Chicagoans since the 1960s.

"It's home. It home for me. It's very hard for me to imagine the church is not going to be around,” said Maria Rigas.

Holy Trinity is the second oldest Greek orthodox church in the United States, founded on the West Side by Greek immigrants more than 120 years ago. It moved to the Northwest Side 50 years ago when their old church was torn down to make way for the UIC campus.

Next week, the property and the building are scheduled to be auctioned off by MB Bank after a judgement against the church over a mortgage foreclosure on an affiliated Greek school in Deerfield.

"It's been proposed that we can move the church. But this church has a lot of historical significance for us. A lot of memories, baptisms, weddings. Everyone holds it near and dear to their heart,” Andreakis said.

In a last ditch attempt, church leaders have started a GoFundMe campaign and are sending out fundraising letters to hundreds of former and current members.

"They want to keep this church. I've seen old ladies crying. I've seen children asking their parents where are we going to go? This is our church,” Andreakis said.

"It's survived the depression and now in our time we will be forced to close it because of financial hardships,” Rigas said.