On Tuesday morning, February 11, 2020, Archieratical Divine Liturgy was done to celebrate Saint Theodora the Empress, protector of the island, along with Saint Spyridon, with great participation of people.Her relic is kept undamaged at the Metropolitan Church of Virgin Mary the Spilaiotissa and Saint Vlassios, whose relic is also in the same church.
In the Divine Liturgy participated, their Eminences, the Bishop of Philadelphia, Mr. Meliton, the Bishop of Nazareth, Mr. Kyriakos, the Bishop of Edessa, Pella and Almopia, Mr. Joel and the local one, the Bishop of Corfu, Paxoi and Diapontian Islands, Mr. Nektarios.
At the end of the Matin, the blessing of the “winter” watermelon, on the remembrance of Saint Vlassios was given,
The Divine Speech was delivered by the Bishop of Philadelphia, Mr. Meliton, who thanked theBishop of Corfu for the blessing he gave him to visit this pilgrimage to Corfu. He emphasized that he came from Constantinople, where she lived and lived as Emperor Theodora. She herself “kept the faith and followed the ways”, as she worshiped the sacred icons during a time of iconoclasm. She lived through the sadness of being forced to leave the world because of the wickedness of the powerful and her son. Mr. Meliton pointed out, with deep emotion, that he carries the testimony of the living and the dead of the Constantinople and of Orthodoxy, as well as the testimony of the monuments of Orthodoxy and Hellenism. The link is constantly reflected in the divine Liturgy, the beginning and the end of life. Shared faith and shared spiritual experience are a cohesive element both for Saint Theodora and for earthly supremacy. The Divine Liturgy gives identity to Christians. Heirloom and struggle the liturgical experience.
We honor the beauty of the Church, the acropolis of piety, the modesty of the reign, the one that restored the place of the sacred icons in the temples. Orthodox faith and sanctity of life, true piety, alms and charity, Slavic Christianity was her great contribution.
The saint gave her talents to the truth of God, unaffected by the climate of the time. She dedicated herself to the mighty emperor her husband Theophilos, but remained committed to faith in God. This devotion led Theophilus to repent in his deathbed.
She stood out for her charity and love. Her jewelery is love for everyone. She stood out for her extremely orthodox faith, which was made possible by the grace of true theology around the world. She stood out for patience in injustice and devoted herself to God, turning her wilderness of human solitude into an oasis of spiritual fairy tale. So he invites us to love God and trust in His will.
Finally, he conveyed both to the priests the brotherly greeting, as well as to the clergy and the people of Corfu the patriarchal blessings and greetings of the Ecumenical Patriarch Mr. Bartholomew.
The Mayor of Central Corfu and the Intercontinental Islands, Mr. Meropi Hydraou, the President of the Municipal Council Mr. Dimitris Metallinos and other representatives of the authorities attended the Divine Liturgy.