Welcome to St. Nicholas Orthodox Church

An Eastern Orthodox presence in Waco since 1949


  • Sunday: Orthros9:00 a.m.
  • Sunday: Liturgy10:00 a.m.
  • Saturday: Vespers5:00 p.m.


617 N. 17th St.
Waco, Texas

Latest Bulletin >Here<

The Heart of Texas Orthodoxy since 1949

St. Nicholas is part of the Metropolis of Denver, Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, and serves all traditions of Orthodoxy in the Central Texas area. Our parishioners include Romanians, Ukrainians, Russians, Lebanese, Syrians, and Greeks along with American converts. All Orthodox churches are one church. The ethnic designation refers to what is called the parish's "jurisdiction" and identifies which bishops hold authority there. There are about 6 million Orthodox in North America and 250 million in the world, making Orthodoxy the second-largest Christian communion.

St. Nicholas began from the early 1900s Greek community in Waco and was formally chartered in 1949. We continue to worship in the original building on the corner of 17th and Sanger Ave. in Waco.

Our services are almost entirely in English with Greek spoken in repetition of English responses. While we attempt to honor the customs of all our members, our liturgical practices follow those of the Greek tradition, particularly those of the Ecumenical Patriarchate. Visitors are encouraged to participate in our services (please refer to the Visit St. Nicholas section of this website) and our parishioners welcome visitors' questions.

Fr. Theodore Tsitsillianos

Father Ted came to St. Nicholas in 1991 from Assumption Church in Bayard, Nebraska. Originally from Glyfada, Greece, Father Ted and his five brothers grew up under the shadow of the Parthenon. As a young man he swam competitively winning a national championship in Greece.

Father Ted came to the United States in 1973 following service in the merchant marines as a Second Captain navigating enormous vessels around the world. Before being called to the priesthood Father Ted worked as an engineer specializing in drafting plans for oil refineries in Houston, Texas. During this time he met and married his wife, Kathy.

Under the spiritual guidance of Father Nicholas Triantafilou, Father Ted attended Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Seminary. He completed his Masters of Divinity and was ordained in 1988. Father Ted served briefly in Merriville, Indiana, before being called to Nebraska.

Father Ted and Kathy arrived in Waco in August of 1991 and have raised their son here. Father Ted has served as Proistaminos since that time and was honored with the office of Economos. The community of Waco has been and continues to be a blessing for Father Ted.

Visit Our Church

Welcome to St. Nicholas!

We would like to familiarize you with some things that may be helpful to you on your first visits to our church. One of the first things you will notice upon entering an Orthodox church is the candle stand where parishoners are lighting candles and venerating and kissing icons. Before beginning their liturgical experience Orthodox Christians will voluntarily light candles, say prayers and venerate the icons.

As one of the American churches of the Greek tradition, St. Nicholas has pews. Please feel free to sit where you are comfortable, though we would invite you to sit closer to the front where you can experience all the sights, smells and sounds of the Liturgy.

You will notice parishoners crossing themselves, bowing, and kneeling at times during the Liturgy. The cross is an affirmation of the Holy Trinity and is done by Orthodox Christians at any point in the Liturgy where they are praying through the Holy Trinity. You may also find that the amount of standing during the Liturgy is too challenging. You are welcome to take a seat.

The Orthodox Church follows a rich Liturgical tradition. The regular Liturgy is contained in the hymnals at the pews. While our choir may sing slight variations on the hymnal songs the sequence of the Liturgy remains the same. At the Small Entrance where the priest presents the Gospel book several hymns are sung which change from week to week or according to the festal calendar. At this point the Apolitikion or Hymn of the Day is sung followed by the Hymn of the Church, which for us is the hymn of St. Nicholas. This small sequence of hymns is concluded with the Kontakion which may reflect a recent or upcoming feast of the Church.

It is with deepest regret that we ask you to abstain from receiving Holy Communion. This is a sacrament reserved for those who are baptized, chrismated and prepared Orthodox Christians. It pains us to turn away a Christian who loves and worships the Lord Jesus, but because of the separation of the Christian churches and the different understandings many non-Orthodox churches have about the Sacrament of Holy Communion we ask you to abstain.

You are welcome to receive the blessed bread given by the priest at the conclusion of the Liturgy. Everyone is allowed to receive this bread which is part of the bread prepared for the Liturgy. The priest will place the piece of bread in your cupped hands and Orthodox Christians may kiss the priest's hand as a reverence of his position as God's representative in the Liturgy.

Please join us at our Coffee Hour in the hall after the service. We would like to meet you, answer your questions and welcome you to our Church. Coffee hour is typically light refreshments provided by members of the parish. At times there are luncheons which you are also invited to attend as our guests. We look forward to meeting you at St. Nicholas!

Get in touch

Please come and visit our services, or contact us via phone or email.