“I have come to my fellow villagers today to salute them,” said the new Archbishop of America, Elpidophoros, from the church of the Transfiguration of the Savior in Nea Pella, Edessa, on his visit there, on Saturday, June 15.
Archbishop of America welcomed the Metropolitan Ioil of Edessa, Pella and Almopia, as well as a number of believers.
Elpidophoros officiated during the Holy Vesper of the Pentecost, after the end of which Metropolitan Ioil of Edessa, wished the new Archbishop of America a perennial and fruitful ministry.
He even offered Elpidophoros one of his personal engolpions, with the image of the Holy Trinity.
Elpidophoros thanked Metropolitan of Edessa and emphasized that he considers it his duty before taking up his duties to receive the blessing of Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, and the wishes of the deceased and the living in Nea Pella.
He pointed out that when one undertakes a high mission, he must have the wish of his Fatherland and the blessing of the Patriarch, and that the ministry of the Archdiocese of America is important not only for the fellow Greeks and believers, but also for the Fatherland.
He thanked the Metropolitan of Edessa on behalf of the Ecumenical Patriarch as well, for the excellent ministry of his flock. “You are an exemplary hierarch of the Church of Greece. And that’s no empty words”, he said.
Upon his departure from the Church, the Archbishop of America spoke to the media outlining, inter alia, the role of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in the Macedonian Struggle, stressing that it is a priority for him to complete the construction of St. Nicholas Holy Church at Manhattan’s “zero point”, as well as the exaltation of the status of the Orthodox Church in America.