Holy Cross Service Times

Regular Weekly Services
*Confirm service times with calendar

8:15 a.m. Orthros
9:30 a.m. Divine Liturgy
with Coffee Hour following
6:00 p.m. Vespers
7:15 p.m. Catechism Class

6:30 p.m. Vespers

5:00 a.m. Orthros
6:00 a.m. Women's Meeting
5:30 p.m. Vespers

5:00 a.m. Orthros
6:00 a.m. Men's Meeting
6:30 p.m. Akathist "Nurturer of Children"
7:15 p.m. Enquirers Class

5:30 p.m. Vespers

6:30 p.m. Vespers

6:30 p.m. Great Vespers

Meet the Clergy

Holy Cross Iconography Project

About Us -Parish History

In the mid 1970s a small group of evangelical Protestants in the Lower Yakima Valley of Washington State, led by Joe Copeland and Mel Gimmaka, began earnestly seeking the New Testament Church.

In November of 1976 Ken Berven, now Fr. Symeon, visited the house-church fellowship near Wapato, WA to explain the work of what was then known as the New Covenant Apostolic Order or NCAO. In March of 1977 the group committed themselves to the building of a church community devoted to one another and to the understanding of the historic Christian faith. The name of that community was the New Covenant Church Community. It was the beginning of an incredible journey into the Orthodox Church. That journey has been marked by exhilarating discoveries of faith and endless challenges to change our hearts, minds and practices, individually and corporately, in order to conform ourselves to that "faith which was once and for all delivered to the saints."

In early 1979 the NCAO formed the Evangelical Orthodox Church within which Joseph Copeland was established as "Bishop" or overseer of the Yakima Valley. In 1980 the community moved its place of meeting from the home near Wapato to Yakima. In the same year Mel and Carol Gimmaka moved back to the Seattle area to pastor what would become St. Paul Orthodox Church in Brier, Washington. From that time our progression into the Orthodox Faith began to steadily increase.

On April 4, 1987, in Seattle, Washington, His Eminence, Metropolitan PHILIP of the Antiochian Orthodox Church chrismated sixty-five Yakima souls and about the same number from the Seattle area. Joseph Copeland and Brian Hagler were ordained to the Diaconate for Holy Cross parish in Yakima and Mel Gimmaka for St. Paul in Brier. All were sealed with the Gift of the Holy Spirit and united to all the holy Fathers and Mothers who throughout the centuries have faithfully confessed the faith once delivered to the Saints. The next day Deacon Joseph and Deacon Mel were ordained to the Holy Priesthood to serve their respective parishes.

By late 1987 it was agreed that Holy Cross needed to start planning for a permanent home. Over many years the church gathered in several different buildings, including the Copeland's home and a hospital auditorium.

On January 7, 1988 the first lots were purchased where our church now permanently resides. These first lots now include the house that serves as the office and meeting rooms as well as the school of St. John of Kronstadt. By August 30, 1988 preliminary plans for a Byzantine style Temple for our newly-acquired property were under way.

One of the most significant developments in the growth of our parish occurred on Pentecost Sunday, June 17, 1989. On that day Fr. Timothy and Kh. Jeneane McCoy arrived with their family to be the associate priest at Holy Cross. The mission church in Reno, Nevada, that Fr. Timothy had led was closed and his family along with four other families moved to Yakima to help in building our parish community. It was a most difficult, but God-blessed event. The small but devoted group from Reno had been on a similar path to the Orthodox faith, some of them having begun their journey to the Orthodox Faith in Ukiah, CA in 1975.

On September 27, 1989 additional land was purchased that adjoined our existing property and we began more seriously making plans to build a temple. After almost three years of applications for re-zoning, public hearings, appeals and more hearings the final permission was given on February 29, 1991 for Holy Cross to build. On September 14, 1991 on the Great Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross we broke ground for the building of a temporary chapel (which was to become the school building for St. John of Kronstadt School) upon completion of a permanent temple.

On May 17, 1992 we celebrated the Divine Liturgy for the first time in our new chapel. It was well over a year later that the parish work crews began to wind down and we began gathering our strength again for the effort to build the new temple.

March 19, 1995 was a great day in our parish history when His Grace, Bishop BASIL consecrated our Holy Table. Though it will seldom be seen without its coverings, it is a most beautiful table within which are sealed the relics of St. Polycarp of Smyrna and St. Anastasia of Rome. It is the center of our corporate life around which we gather to offer our "reasonable service of worship" and from which we all receive the food of immortality.

On September 14, 1996, our patronal feast day of The Exaltation of the Precious Life-giving Cross, His Grace, Bishop JOSEPH broke ground for the beginning of the Temple. This was an incredible project that required much of everyone. The parish labored in love and with the grace of God, the temple began to take shape.

All during this time of building, the parish continued a full liturgical life, struggling in the effort to learn to pray, celebrating the feasts with joy and understanding our rich heritage of faith, becoming more and more devoted to knowing the lives of the saints that we are to imitate, holding inquirer's classes and growing spiritually and numerically.

On July 11, 1999 we celebrated our first Divine Liturgy in our new Temple followed by a wedding!

Many, many people have helped and supported us through our journey to Orthodoxy. We have welcomed many others home to the faith and they have become an important part of today's vision and the continuing work of establishing an Orthodox Christian presence in the Yakima Valley.