Bishop Silouan of Sinope performed the sanctification rite for the opening of the Book Center of the Archdiocesan District of Adelaide, in which members of the church choir “Agios Ioannis o Damaskinos” sang and the clergymen of Adelaide concelebrated.
The sanctification took place in the Church of Saint Panteleimon as reported by vema.com.au. The books and objects of worship, which belong to the Book Center, were exhibited in the courtyard of the church and inside the offices of the Holy Archdiocese. The exhibition was prepared by the ladies of Central Philoptochos Society.
Many people, who were obviously longing for the spiritual training offered by the Book Center, attended the event, which was a great spiritual event.
The Book Center, which operates under the auspices of the Central Philoptochos Society, offers the Church’s witness to the world and carried out important internal missionary work.
In his sermon, Bishop Silouan stressed the importance of reading spirituality books, mentioning that Fathers of the Church described spiritual study as a form of ascetic discipline. He pointed out that spiritual study was not a hobby to spend our time but a prayerful act that requires devotion. That is why, as he said, the wicked raise obstacles to our spiritual study, and that is why we should strive to overcome the difficulties and temptations that distract us from the study of God’s Word and, through this study, our communication with God.
The attendees then toured the exhibition. Many of the books on display are new editions, being introduced for the first time in South Australia (and possibly throughout Australia). Other than these, new or older editions, in addition to their timelessness of value and usefulness, are especially popular nowadays, such as the teachings of St. Paisios of Mount Athos, as well as one of the last books of Archbishop Makarios of Australia, “Lord and Master of My Life… Reflections on Spiritual Alertness,” published in English by St. Andrew’s Orthodox Press. The book offers thoughts, reflections and explanations of the prayer of Saint Ephraim of Syros.