On Monday, 15th November, the day on which our Church honours the memory of Saints Elpidios, Markellos and Eustochios and His Grace Bishop Elpidios of Kyaneon celebrates his nameday, a Hierarchical Divine Liturgy was celebrated at the Holy Parish of St Nicholas, Marrickville, in Sydney, presided by His Grace who was celebrating his nameday and in the presence of His Eminence Archbishop Makarios of Australia.
His Grace Bishop Elpidios received the cordial wishes of his Archbishop, His Eminence Metropolitan Ezekiel of Dervis, his fellow Bishops Iakovos of Miletoupolis, Emilianos of Meloa, Silouan of Sinope, and Christodoulos of Magnesia, the bishop-elects Evmenios of Kerasounta and Prochoros of Charioupolis, as well as the clergy and faithful who attended church.
After the Divine Liturgy, a meal was served in the parish hall for the celebration of the nameday of Bishop Elpidios of Kyaneon.
In his short greeting, Archbishop Makarios described the horrific tortures that were endured by St Elpidios, an officer in the Roman army, and his companions, Markellos and Eustochios, for not giving Emperor Justinian the Apostate the satisfaction of renouncing their faith in Christ.
His Eminence noted that St Elpidios and the other two honoured saints deserve to be called Great Martyrs by our Church because the martyrdom they endured was truly beyond all human logic, but they remained steadfast and unshakeable in their faith, sacrificing their life for Christ.
The Archbishop then referred to His Grace Bishop Elpidios of Kyaneon, declaring that he was proud of his ministry in the state of Western Australia, as Archiepiscopal Vicar of Perth. “I praise God for things turning out as they have and for His Grace taking on the shepherding of the flock of Western Australia who, for many years, did not have a bishop,” he noted characteristically and added, “for where there is no bishop, an ecclesiological gap is created.”
At the same time, he expressed his satisfaction for the fact that with His Grace Bishop Elpidios assuming the duties as Archiepiscopal Vicar of Perth, correct, organised and ecclesiological work began to be performed.
“His Grace is undertaking excellent pastoral and administrative work in Western Australia,” said the Archbishop, “and I feel the need to express not only my appreciation but also my gratitude to him for his hierarchical ministry in Perth, which exudes the ethos and mindset of the Orthodox Church.”
After these warm words and his heartfelt wishes, His Eminence gave Bishop Elpidios of Kyaneon, on behalf of all the hierarchs who were present, an engolpion as a gift for his nameday.