During the last three days, the Archiepiscopal Vicar of Northcote, Archimandrite Fr. Eumenios Vasilopoulos, visited the faithful of northwestern Victoria and the parishes of the Annunciation in Mildura and of St. George in Robinvale.
On Saturday morning, as reported by vema.com.au, Fr. Eumenios officiated the Divine Liturgy for the feast of the Entry of the Virgin Mary into the Temple at the Holy Chapel of St. George in Robinvale.
Unfortunately, over the years, only a few Greek Orthodox have remained in this small town, with most having moved to either Melbourne or Adelaide. It is noted that most Greeks in the area were engaged in the cultivation of vines, as well as in Mildura.
Addressing the faithful who have remained in Robinvale and attended the service in the Chapel of St. George, Fr. Evmenios first conveyed the wishes of Archbishop Makarios of Australia, as well as his congratulations for their great need and persistence to have a church in their place. In fact, Fr. Evmenios likened their devotion and care for the church to the devotion shown by the Virgin Mary when she dedicated herself to the Temple of Solomon. “The church is the center of our life and everything else is around it,” underlined Fr. Evmenios.
On Sunday morning, Fr. Evmenios performed the Divine Liturgy at the Church of the Annunciation in Mildura, and in his sermon he referred to the upcoming great feast of Christmas, reminding how important it is to come close to our neighbor and share the gifts that God has given us. In closing, he quoted the words of St. Ioannis Chrysostomos, emphasizing to the faithful that if we can not see Christ in our long-suffering neighbor outside the church, we will not see him in the Holy Chalice either.