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Orthodox mission


If all goes according to plan, the Ss. Joachim and Anna Orthodox Mission may be moving to a new location before the end of the year. A proposal for a mission complex on Roosevelt Avenue passed its environmental impact survey March 27, and is now up for appeal.

The proposed building project will be located roughly across from Goldendale High School, on property formerly leased for wheat and alfalfa farming. Its first phase will consist of a fellowship hall, cemetery, driveway and parking lot. The fellowship hall will double as a church until a separate church can be built in phase two.

Father John Phelps says Ss. Joachim and Anna has been seeking its own space for some time. Currently, the mission rents space at 219 W Main St. Before Phelps moved to Goldendale in 2015, services were conducted by Father Joseph Copeland, who had to travel from Holy Cross Church in Yakima. When he couldn’t make it, parishioners would attend services at St. John the Forerunner Monastery.

After the appeals period, the mission will apply for a conditional use permit, then a building permit, then begin breaking ground. Though Phelps says it will require a fortuitous alignment of circumstances, he hopes to be holding services in the fellowship hall by Christmas. “It may not be feasible,” he says, “but I don’t deal in the feasible.”


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