Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew presided over the Divine Liturgy today, August 9, 2023, at the Metochion of the Holy Monastery of Saint Panteleimon of Mount Athos, in Galatas of Constantinople, for the feast of the memory of Saint Panteleimon the Healer according to the Julian calendar.
The Divine Liturgy was performed by Grand Syncellus Iakovos and a large number of Russian-speaking believers attended the Divine Liturgy.
In his speech, the Ecumenical Patriarch expressed his joy at being in the Metochion of Saint Panteleimon to celebrate with the Christians of the Community.
“We praise the holy God who blesses us this year to meet and pray together in the Church of St. Panteleimon. We thank God because since last year, such a day and until today, many and very unpleasant things could have happened here as they unfortunately happen in other parts of the world,” the Ecumenical Patriarch said.
“Today I came from the Phanar, from the seat of the Mother Church, and I bring you my blessing, dear Christians. On the occasion of today’s feast, I also wish you all the best on behalf of your other Orthodox Christian brothers and sisters living in Constantinople, the Romans, Georgians, Ukrainians, Romanians, and all our brothers and sisters, with whom we are all joined together in our common Orthodox faith. All these brothers and sisters of ours, when they came and settled here in Constantinople, found protection in the warmth of the Mother Church,” he added.
“We gave them a church, where they could perform their religion in their language, in the language of their fathers and mothers, according to their customs and traditions. Your parish, the Russian-speaking one, here in Galatas, and the Bulgarian-speaking parish of our city, are the oldest and while the others were founded in recent years,” the Ecumenical Patriarch stressed.
Finally, the Ecumenical Patriarch concluded: “We wish the fathers on Mount Athos and all of us here in Constantine to remain united in God’s love. Father Nicholas, together with Father Alexios, thank you for the warm welcome and for the gifts. I also thank dear Fr. Panaretos because he is always close to you and you are close to him and shepherd on behalf of the Mother Church our Russian-speaking brothers and sisters as well as the pilgrims, who pass through Constantinople from time to time. Christ is among us.”