Savas (Zembillas)

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Metropolitan of Pittsburgh
Archdiocese America
See Pittsburgh
Installed December 8, 2011
Term ended Incumbent
Predecessor Metropolitan Maximos
Other posts Bishop of Troas
Ordination November 21, 1992 (diaconate)
January 8, 1995 (priesthood)
Consecration February 2, 2002
Personal details
Birth name Savas Zembillas
Born Gary, Indiana
Denomination Greek Orthodox
Alma mater Colby College
Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology

Metropolitan Savas (Zembillas) of Pittsburgh is the spiritual leader of the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Pittsburgh which includes all of Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia. The Metropolis consists of 53 parishes and six monastic communities which minister to the needs of thousands of Greek Orthodox faithful. The Metropolis offices are in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Bishop Savas was elected to the office of Metropolitan of Pittsburgh on November 2, 2011,[1] by the Holy and Sacred Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Constantinople, and was enthroned December 8, 2011[2] at Saint Nicholas Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Pittsburgh.

Early life and education[edit]

Metropolitan Savas was born Savas Zembillas in Gary, Indiana, on June 11, 1957, the second of six children of Skevofylax ("Steve") and Stamatia (Georgiades) Zembillas. Graduating from Andrean High School in Gary in 1975, he entered Colby College in Waterville, Maine, where he earned a BA in Philosophy and English Literature (1979). While at Colby, he performed as the lead singer for campus punk band Mick and the Malignants.[3]

He also graduated from Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology in Brookline, Massachusetts (1984, M.Div. with highest honors). He continued his studies at Oxford University, England, under the supervision of then Bishop Kallistos Ware.

Early service[edit]

He served as parish priest of the Greek Orthodox Church of the Annunciation in Kalamazoo, Michigan (1995-1997), and was subsequently assigned (now with the honorary title of archimandrite) to pastor the Greek Orthodox Church of St. Demetrios in Merrick, New York (1997-1999).

Early episcopacy[edit]

Prior to his election to the throne of Pittsburgh, Metropolitan Savas served as the titular Bishop of Troas (2001-2011),[4] overlapping times when he was also the Chancellor of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese (1999-2009) and Director of the Archdiocesan Office of Church, Society and Culture (2009-2011).

Metropolitan Savas has been an active participant in the social network structures of the Internet, engaging issues of contemporary culture and society from an Orthodox Christian perspective. He has led numerous pilgrimages of young adults to Constantinople and the Holy Land, in addition to missionary teams to Kenya and Tanzania. He is presently the Chairman of the Committee for Church and Society of the Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of North and Central America.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Election Announcement of Savas to Pittsburgh, from the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese
  2. ^ Enthronement of Metropolitan Savas of Pittsburgh, from the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese
  3. ^ "The Sex Pistols, Nietzsche and the Will of God: Savas Zembillas's Journey from the Profane to the Sacred", Gerry Boyle, Colby Magazine
  4. ^ Ordination announcement of Bishop-elect Savas to Troas, from the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese
Orthodox Church titles
Preceded by
Metropolitan of Pittsburgh
2011 –
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Alexios (Panagiotopoulos)
Bishop of Troas
2001 – 2011
Succeeded by