Philoptochos, established in 1931 by the late Patriarch Athenagoras I, means "Friend of the Poor" and is the philanthropic arm of the Archdiocese of the Greek Orthodox Church in America. Philoptochos is a non-profit, tax exempt organization which has earned the distinction of being the second largest philanthropic organization in the United States.
The Portland chapter is uniquely organized into a "circle" concept in order to enhance membership participation. Members may join any one of six smaller, more intimate circles. Monthly meetings promote fellowship and spiritual sharing through service projects and chapter activities. The full membership meets bi-annually to review and approve Philoptochos programs.
The Philoptochos Society of Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Cathedral has been involved in philanthropic projects for over fifty years. One of the main on-going fundraising activities of the organization is the operation of Philo House, a volunteer-staffed thrift shop established in 1979. Proceeds support welfare and activities for senior citizens.
In 1995, the Holy Trinity Philoptochos initiated Kids 'N' Cancer: Camp Agape. This annual week-long camp, operating out of Camp Angelos on the Sandy River, provides children with cancer and their families a time to be together with meals, lodging, and activities free of cost; all they have to do is enjoy each other.
The Greek community of Portland has collected 300 of its time-honored recipes and put them into a cookbook: "Flavor It Greek! A Celebration of Food, Faith and Family," now in its second edition (March 2005).
Proceeds from Flavor It Greek! products have funded over $50,000 of services for women and children in the greater Portland area and abroad.
The Philoptochos Society of Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Portland, Oregon embodies the principles of a Christian ministry while offering support, assistance and encouragement to all in need.