On the Sunday of the Blind, June 6, 2021, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew presided over the Divine Liturgy at the Church of Saint Georgios in Agioi Theodoroi, Imbros as reported by fanarion.blogspot.com.
“Nothing is dearer than the land of his fathers”: the Ecumenical Patriarch began his speech with the words of the ancient tragic poet Euripides, emphasizing that “these words resonate strongly in our hearts throughout this week of return and our stay in our beloved birthplace Imbros.”
He referred to “a forgotten and perhaps wronged,” benefactor of the island, Konstantinos Iliadis, a distinguished professor in Caesarea of Cappadocia and Jerusalem.
The Ecumenical Patriarch pointed out that he wished to walk again in the sacred land of his sweet homeland “and that with the blessing and grace of God this wish came true and we are here today in the Church of St. George to celebrate the Sunday of the Blind Man,” emphasizing the feeling of cheerfulness and joy in everyone’s hearts.
“Six weeks have passed since Easter, the feast of feasts,” went on to say Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, “and this time we came to enjoy our paternal home and the renovated church of our village, the sweet sound of the bell, the humble chapels, the familiar paths and faces of the Imbrians.”
He thanked all those who live permanently in Imbros, as well as all those who were able to come back to their birthplace, because as he stated “this is how you show in practice that you do not forget our place. And please never forget him, always come back.”
Finally, he praised the work of Metropolitan Kyrillos of Imbros and Tenedos, who was elected sixteen months ago and within this very short time, he said, he managed to love Imbros and the Imbrians and at the same time to be unreservedly loved by them.