In those early days, the church did not own a property for holding services, so it was allowed on Sundays to use the spacious chapel of the Episcopal Church of the Good Shepherd in Maitland. At that time, the priest was Protosingel Nikodim Pribojan from Wales, who had been raised in Canada. He was appointed as the parish priest on December 22, 1989, when the parish had around 30 families.
Father Peter Milanovich, an American Serb, from the nearby Orthodox church of St. Stephen (OCA), helped the parishioners select and purchase in 1992 a beautiful property of six acres for 250 thousand dollars. Former horse ranch and private home became the church chapel, with one end serving as a residence for the priest.
With time comes change and Saint Petka welcomed the arrival of many Serbian refugee families from former Yugoslavia. Father Nikodim was instrumental in helping newcomers settle in, and start a new life in Central Florida, until his departure on March 21, 1998.
During the time when the church did not have a permanent priest, Fr. Miloje Raičević, Fr. Živorad Djordjević, Fr. Petar Milanović, Fr. Mateja Matejić, Fr. Stefan Zaremba, Fr. Milan Stojanović, and Fr. Nikolai Regoš served as needed.