Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew presided over the Grand Vespers for the Synaxis of the Virgin Mary “Axion Estin” and the Feast of the Holy Apostles Bartholomew and Barnabas at the Monastery of Zoodochos Pigi in Balikli on Thursday, June 10, 2021, during which he celebrated his name day.
Hierarchs of the Ecumenical Throne, delegations of the Autocephalous Churches of Cyprus and of Ukraine, led by Metropolitans Vasileios of Constantia and Ammochostos and Joasaph of Ivano-Frankivsk and Galicia respectively, Hierarchs of the Church of Greece and the Georgian Orthodox Church, Abbots of the Mount Athos, Greek Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Konstantinos Vlasis, Ambassador of Greece to Ankara Michael-Christos Diamesis, former Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Antonis Diamataris, Consuls General of Greece and of Ukraine in Constantinople Georgia Soultanopoulou and Oleksandr Gaman, members of the local communities, faithful from Constantinople, and pilgrims from abroad.
At the end of the Vespers, the Ecumenical Patriarch performed a Trisagion for the Didaskalos of the Nation, Bartholomew from Koutloumousiou Monastery, born in Imbros (1772-1851), whose name the Ecumenical Patriarch received.
Afterwards, the Ecumenical Patriarch bestowed the offikion of Archon Nomodotis of the Ecumenical Throne upon Panagiotis Ladas, Emeritus Professor of the Law School of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki.
In his speech, the Patriarch praised the personality, the scientific excellence and the academic career of the honored professor.
The Archons has contributed significantly to the Church and the Nation, and today continue their ministry through their two brotherhoods, the global one under the name “Panagia the Pammakaristos,” to which you now belong, and the Order of St. Andrew, Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in America.
Concluding his speech, the Ecumenical Patriarch stressed:
The Christian “duty of man” surpasses in power and commitment humanism and enriches it. “Everything has its price, only human being has dignity,” absolute value, regardless of social status, education, religion, gender, cultural background, etc.
There is no price, nothing can be equivalent to the value of the human being. This truth is revealed in a unique way through the biblical view of human being. The one created in the image of God and having the eternal destiny of being in the likeness of God, the human being of grace, has incomparable value. Being orientated towards the “human being” alone is not enough.
In an incomparable way, Plato also expressed this truth by saying “God is the measure of all things” (Laws, 716c), which was directed against the “Man is the measure of all things” expressed by the sophist Protagoras.
The future does not belong to the self-made “man-god,” who does not recognize the immutable limits and abolishes the “measure.” There is no future without reference to the transcendental.
In his reply, the new Archon thanked the Ecumenical Patriarch for the great honor and referred to his family’s close ties with Constantinople and the great respect he always had for the Great Church of Christ. He made special reference to his studies in Law.
Then a reception was held in the courtyard of the Monastery, during which the Ecumenical Patriarch received the wishes of the Hierarchs, the clergy and the faithful. Two choirs from Ukraine sang in honor of the Ecumenical Patriarchal’s name day.