The early years of Bp. Philaret's life are not known. Before 1921, Fr. Philaret was the [[priest]] at Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church in San Francisco. In June 1921, parishioners from Holy Trinity, who were supporters of the Greek prime minister Eleftherios Venizelos, established the Church of St. Sophia in San Francisco. At the request of the leaders of the St. Sophia community, Fr. Philaret was appointed the first priest at St. Sophia and also served as the president of the first board of trustees.
On [[June 1]], 1923, Fr. Philaret was [[consecration of a bishop|consecrated]] the first Bishop of Chicago. Also, before the election of Fr. [[Kallistos (Papageorgapoulos) of San Francisco|Kallistos (Papageorgapoulos)]] as the first Greek bishop of San Francisco in 1927, Bp. Philaret served concurrently as “[[locum tenens]]” for the Bishop of San Francisco from June 1, 1923 until [[August 7]], 1927. During the time that Bp. Philaret served in Chicago he received a Doctor of Divinity degree at Episcopal Seminary of Nashotah in Wisconsin.