The Bishop of Volokolamsk Mr. Ilarion in Corfu
On Monday, December 18, 2017 the Bishop of Volokolamsk Mr. Ilarion did the Matin and the Divine Liturgy in the Church of Saint Spyridon the Wonderworker.
In his speech, his Eminence, the Bishop of Corfu, Paxoi and Diapontian Islands mgr. Nektarios welcomed Mr. Ilarion as a highly respected Hierarch of the Russian Church, who, apart from his rich theological knowledge, is also a talented musician and self-taught of the Greek Language. The acquaintance between them occurred when the right hand of St Spyridon was in Moscow. Mr. Ilarion is concerned about the unity of our Orthodox Church with his diligent efforts.
Moreover, Mr. Nektarios pointed out the deepest ties that connect Corfu and Russia. Russia, with the Admiral Theodore Usakov, Saint of the Russian Church, restored the Episcopal Throne of Corfu. On the other hand, great spiritual people such as the Archimandrites Nikiforos Theotokis and Evgenios Voulgaris later became Bishops of Russia and of course the first Governor of Greece, Ioannis Kapodistrias, who previously served as the Foreign Minister of Tsarist Russia.
In his closing, the Bishop of Corfu wished that St. Spyridon’s prayers will always protect and give strength to Mr. Ilarion and His Beatitude Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia Mr. Cyril and gave to the Bishop of Volokolamsk an amulet with the icon of Saint Spyridon.
In his address, Mr. Ilarion thanked Mr. Nektarios for giving him the opportunity to do the Divine Liturgy in the Holy Church of Saint Spyridon while mentioning that the Protector of Corfu is a universal Saint. He was distinguished for his humbleness and when needed, he defended powerfully the Orthodox Church along with Saint Nikolaos at the First Ecumenical Synod in Nicaea condemning the heretical Arius.
Lastly, Mr. Ilarion wished that Saint Spyridon’s Grace will always protect our Orthodox Church in the modern difficult times, where Faith in Christ is being fought.
Then, the Holy Paraklisis (requesting prayer) was chanted in the relic of Saint Spyridon.