Archbishop of Tirana and all of Albania in Corfu
In the framework of the expatriate meeting of the Ionian Islands, organized by the Ionian Islands Region, the Archbishop of Tirana and all Albania, Mr Anastasios, arrived in Corfu on the morning of Wednesday 5 September 2018.
At eleven o’clock the official reception of His Beatitude, by the Eminence the Bishop of Corfu, Paxos and the Diapontian Islands, Mr. Nektarios, took place in the Holy Church of theSaint Spyridon the Wonderworker, where the Holy Paraklisis (requesting service) was sung.
In his address the Bishopof Corfu welcomed with sincere respect the Beatitude and the Metropolitans of Kefallinia Dimitrios, Dodoni Chrysostomos and Amandias Nathanael on the island of Agios Spyridon, referring to the radiant personality of Archbishop Tirana and all of Albania, who glorified the Orthodox Church in the neighboring country, making it an example to imitate in the whole Orthodox world.
Also, Mr. Nektarios stressed that in the harsh times that our country and the world are going through, more and more people are appealing to the Church and to our Saints of Faith, who are our answer. Saint Spyridon, through his embassies all these centuries, guards and covers the island of Corfu.
In conclusion, the Bishop of Corfu wished every success to the expatriate meeting of the Ionian Islands, conference of the Ionian Hellenism Abroad and the Lord to strengthen and give health to His Beatitude in order to continue the wonderful work he has done in Albania.
Then the Beatitude, in his reply, thanked both the Bishop of Corfu and the Region of the Ionian Islands for the kind invitation, while pointing out that he came to Corfu as a simple worshipper.
When one sees the holy relics of the Saints, he realizes that the silence of the Saints is the most eloquent testimony of Orthodoxy. What distinguished Saint Spyridon was his humbleness and silence.
Christians only really wish to become Saints. We truly honor the Saints when we have them as models in our lives. Holiness is not always expressed with miracles, or with martyrdom, but is expressed in everyday life. The unremitting course of the believer is not how much he has reached and where, but that he is trying to love more honest, more true, and more complete.
Moreover, the Archbishop of Tirana and all of Albania noted that today there is a great debate about the love and the great radiance of Orthodoxy. But we must not forget the word of the Lord who says that he who loves him really, respects His commandments. Unfortunately, we as Orthodox people often have a magical image of our faith, confined to external events. Orthodoxy remains based on the Gospel. Ultimately, we want to increase our love for God as well as for people.
By concluding the Beatitude, wished God to help Christians more and more to be inspired by the Saints and to radiate more love, more hope, more faith.
Then the Archbishop of Albania went to the Bishopric of the Holy Metropolis in Muragia, where he made official statements in the press and in the media. Declarations were also made by the Bishop of Corfu, as well as the Regional Governor of the Ionian Islands, Mr. Theodoros Galiatsatos.