Greek: New Testament Readings

Ongoing Enrollment

While our courses are no longer available for purchase on the website, St. Raphael School is open to inquiries about enrolling in courses at any time during the year.  If you wish to enroll in a Yearlong course for the 2020-2021 school year after the official add/drop deadline (September 21), you will need to contact us directly.  We will consider each request on a case-by-case basis after considering several factors, including size of the class, the preparedness of the student, the willingness of the instructor to accommodate a late addition to the class, and the content of the course.  If you would like to submit a request for enrollment in an ongoing course, please visit our Contact Us page.

 SRS Greek Program Curriculum Map

In this course, students will work through the entirety of David Alan Black’s Learn to Read New Testament Greek, learning all the grammatical paradigms and concepts as well as about 75% of the vocabulary necessary to read the New Testament in Greek, with the aid of a lexicon. Students will also read prayers from the Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, Orthros, Vespers, as well as hymns from the liturgical year, study the Gospel and Epistle texts prescribed in the lectionary, and begin the study of one of the Gospels.

This course can be taken more than once, with repeat students using the textbook material for review, and spending more time on extra Scripture reading and translation. During each class meeting, Mr. Karagiannis will begin by leading the students in grading their own exercises from previous lessons. Students will be asked to give their answers, with Mr. Karagiannis coaching them through the correction of errors. Students will also recite paradigms and be asked to define Greek vocabulary words in English. Mr. Karagiannis will then teach from the next chapter in the text, introducing new vocabulary words and Greek grammar concepts and paradigms. Students will practice the new skills with direction from Mr. Karagiannis.

During each class, students will practice reading prayers and singing hymns, receiving (encouraging) critiques of their Greek pronunciation. Recordings of native Greek-speakers singing hymns will often give color to the lessons, as well as Greek manuscripts and icons with Greek inscriptions.

The fact that our class meets twice a week defines the scope of our work together. The purpose of our class meeting is to offer live instruction from a skilled teacher, who can explain the content of the course in a responsive way, giving students closer guidance than they would receive from a textbook, in a difficult subject many parents do not feel equipped to teach. The class meeting is also a time to coach students in their practice of skills they will need as they study Greek on the other four days of the week. Finally, Mr. Karagiannis intends the course to be a community of learners, who gain strength and inspiration from each other, integrating their Orthodox faith and their study of Greek.


Saint Raphael’s School teaches what is often called “Koine Greek.” It is the dialect of Greek which was spoken throughout the Eastern Mediterranean following the conquests of Alexander the Great in the late 4th century BC, and persisted throughout the Roman and Byzantine periods and eventually evolved into the Modern Greek language which is currently spoken in Greece today. Koine Greek is the dialect of Greek with which the New Testament was written (which is why is Koine Greek is often called “New Testament Greek”).


Along with the New Testament, the various services of The Eastern Church, hymns, prayers, and saints lives were also composed in Koine Greek. At Saint Raphael’s School, Koine Greek is taught using the “Modern” or “Received” pronunciation. This pronunciation is identical to that used by speakers of the Modern Greek language today, and it is also the pronunciation currently used for the liturgies and services of the Orthodox Church of Greece, and most of the Orthodox Churches under the jurisdiction of the Ecumenical Patriarch, including The Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America (GOARCH).


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Required Materials*

*Required materials are not included in the purchase of the course.

Nickolas Karagiannis joins Saint Raphael School as an Upper School Humanities and New Testament Greek teacher. Nickolas holds a B.A. in History and Classics from Montclair State University in New Jersey, a M.A and a M.Phil. in Ancient and Medieval History from the Graduate Center of The City University of New York. He is currently a Ph.D. candidate working on a dissertation on early Byzantine hagiography.

Nickolas has taught various history and humanities courses at both two-year and four-year colleges throughout New York City. He is very excited to join Saint Raphael School and share his love of history, literature, the Greek language, and his Orthodox faith with Saint Raphael’s students.

Nickolas currently lives in New York City with his lovely wife Marianela. In his spare time he enjoys reading history, theology, and mythology, visiting the museums, parks and churches in New York City, traveling to his wife’s beautiful home country of Panama, watching NFL football, and drinking far too much coffee.

Red checkmarkComputer: You will need a stable, reliable computer, running with a processor with a speed of 1 GHz or better on one of the following operating systems: Mac OS X with Mac OS 10.7 or later; Windows 8, 7, Vista (with SP1 or later), or XP (with SP3 or later). We do not recommend using an iPad or other tablet for joining classes. An inexpensive laptop or netbook would be a much better solution, as such devices enable you to plug an Ethernet cable directly into your computer. Please note that Chromebooks are allowed but not preferred, as they do not support certain features of the Zoom video conference software such as breakout sessions and annotation, which may be used by our teachers for class activities.

Red checkmarkHigh-Speed Internet Connection: You will also need access to high-speed internet, preferably accessible via Ethernet cable right into your computer. Using Wi-Fi may work, but will not guarantee you the optimal use of your bandwidth. The faster your internet, the better. We recommend using a connection with a download/upload speed of 5/1 Mbps or better. You can test your Internet connection here.

Red checkmarkWebcam: You may use an external webcam or one that is built in to the computer.

Red checkmarkHeadset: We recommend using a headset rather than a built-in microphone and speakers. Using a headset reduces the level of background noise heard by the entire class.

Red checkmarkZoom: We use a web conferencing software called Zoom for our classes, which enables students and teachers to gather from around the globe face to face in real time. Zoom is free to download and easy to use.

To download Zoom:

  1. Visit
  2. Click to download the first option listed, Zoom Client for Meetings.
  3. Open and run the installer on your computer.
  4. In August, students will be provided with instructions and a link for joining their particular class.

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