Priest Ordination in the Holy Metropolis of Corfu
On Sunday, June 3, 2018, his Eminence, the Bishop of Corfu, Paxoi and Diapontian Islands, Mr. Nektarios did the Divine Liturgy in the celebrating holy church of All Saints, in Corfu town, where he ordained presbyter, the deacon father Antonios Soueref.
In his speech, father Antonios thanked first and foremost the Triune God who allows him to become a priest, while considering at the same time the great responsibility that he will bear from now on, since he is called to bring the souls trusted to him by Christ to salvation. Priests should live in a way that will constitute an example to imitate.
Moreover, father Antonios thanked his Eminence- who embraced him as a father from the very first moment, listening to what his soul desired, to follow the Priesthood- and the Protopresbyter father Themistoklis Mourtzanos along with the parish of All Saints, where he served for three months and the female Holy Monastery of Pantokrator, Agios Athanasios.
Finally, father Antonios thanked his spiritual father, Protopresbyter Dimitrios Koulouris and father Myronas from Simonopetra.
Then, the Bishop of Corfu mentioned three of the elements in father Antonios’ speech. Firstly, the confession of his faith, which plays an important role in priesthood. Priests carry their crosses and follow Lord’s steps, in order to confess Him in front of the people. Second element is love, which he expressed in his speech towards the Church of Christ, who at the same time declares his devotion. And thirdly, it is worth noting the feelings, but the experiences acquired by a young child by Father Antonios, which led him to our unbroken Orthodox Faith, to the only truth of the Lord, the Most Holy Theotokos and all the Saints.
Moreover, Mr. Nektarios, referring to the celebrated saints, stressed that the Apostle Paul likened the number of our Church’s saints in cloud. The millions of Saints are very well described by John the Evangelist, in the Book of Revelation. There is a large crowd of Saints who wear white tunics, brilliant, cleaner and light, circling the throne of the slaughtered Lamb. The Church honors the well-known, but especially the unknown Saints, men and women, martyrs, ashes, ascetics, hierarchs, clergy and lay people who have pleased the Triune God with their lives. Even the saints lived in the comfort of present life, but also in the faith in the communion with the Holy God. Comfort is not meant as goodness. On the contrary, comfort is the mental, the heart’s joy and the love of society both with God and with the people.
In his conclusion, his Eminence called upon the faithful to become even saints, as Christ Himself urges, to fight daily against selfishness and passion, while participating in the working life of the Church. And holy by participating in the Sacred Sacraments, walking on the road of Grace through the embassies of all saints.