The Clergy Families of the Archdiocesan District gathered with Archbishop Elpidophoros of America for their annual Vasilopita dinner that was held at the Greek Orthodox Church of our Saviour in Rye, New York on Sunday evening, January 22, 2023.
When speaking to his clergy and their families, His Eminence said, “Being with you tonight is such an inspiring image both for the present and future of the Archdiocese. We have completed the first century, a great century but it was only the beginning.
The success of the first century is because of you. I want you to be with me. Without you I cannot do anything. And when I say ‘you’, I am not only speaking to the priests but I am also speaking to the Presvyteres and your children. In fact I have to thank the presvyteres who are the heroes!”
The event was graciously underwritten by Archon Michael Psaros as his expression of thanks to the clergy for their support of the Saint Nicholas Shrine. It was attend by 90 clergy and Presvyteres along with 60 children.
You can read here the homily of Archbishop Elpidophoros
Very Reverend Archdiocesan Chancellor, Fr. Nektarios,
Reverend District Chancellor, Fr. Elias,
Dear Fathers, Presvyteres and Clergy Families,
Beloved Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
I am so happy to share this evening with you – the clergy and families of our Archdiocesan District – in order to celebrate our annual Vasilopita Dinner here in Rye.
Even though January 1st has already passed, I still convey to all of you my warmest prayers and heartfelt wishes for a healthy, successful and spiritually prosperous New Year.
We have faced and overcome many challenges over these past three years. And I especially wish to convey my deepest gratitude and appreciation to all of you – the clergy, Presvyteres and families of our District – for being steadfast in your faith and consistent in your ministries.
Last year, the centennial of our Sacred Archdiocese, brought us to tremendous milestones – including the consecration and completion of our Saint Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church and National Shrine at Ground Zero.
We have had much to celebrate, but even though we are a Church grounded in history, we always look to the future. We do not rest on the laurels of our accomplishments, because we are called to be visionaries, whose reach will always exceed our grasp, for we reach from the heart.
As we cut the Vasilopita this evening – no matter who finds the coin – the sweetness and nourishment in every slice of the Pita should remind each and every one of us that we are all blessed by God to be ministers of His Gospel of salvation.
We are all part of the greater family of God that surrounds us with love and forgiveness.
We are all part of this Sacred Archdiocese and the Holy Great Church of Christ, our Ecumenical Patriarchate.
We are all valuable members of the Body of Christ – each of us with different skills and talents. And together – united in our love for God and love for one another – we are a powerful engine of God’s love for the world.
Therefore, my beloved friends,
Let us embrace this New Year of 2023 and accept the blessing of the Vasilopita with hearts and minds set on the things of God, so as to fulfill them in our collective ministry throughout the Archdiocesan District.
I know that all of you will apply yourselves with great faith and great energy, to accomplish God’s will in your communities and in your personal lives.
May the Lord grant unto us all a very blesséd, happy, healthy and spiritually prosperous New Year of the Grace of our Lord! Amen.