On Sunday 22 March His Eminence Archbishop Sergios officiated at the Service of the Holy Eucharist for the 4th Sunday of Lent together with the Parish Priest, Father George Tsiftis and Father Simon Sumar, which included the Doxology for the Greek Day of Independence in 1821.
In his address after the Service His Eminence made reference to the Gospel reading of the day and Emphasised the importance of fasting and prayer during Great Lent. He said these are the two useful means which we have to strengthen ourselves and grow closer to God.
His Eminence spoke of the struggle for Independence of Odessa (now known as the Ukraine). He said that the revolution started with the blessing of the Church and that is why Europe is free today. The people fought their oppressors for their faith and their own ethnic identity. Because of God’s providence people from abroad assisted the Greeks in their struggle. And that it is important to support our Motherland and to preserve our ethnic heritage in the correct way so as to be good witnesses of the Orthodox Faith, to our fellow Greeks and others.
He thanked Father Simon Sumar for serving in our Churches and welcomed Father Sumar’s wife,Presvytera and their daughter. Also Dr Johann Rossouw, who is a lecturer at the department of Philosophy at the university of Bloemfontein,and his wife and child and other parishioners who had recently been baptised in the Orthodox Church. His Eminence emphasised that the Orthodox Church is for all people and beyond Nationalism and that we are called to support all our fellow human beings. And by preserving our customs, principles, morals and Faith – living our lives in the correct manner we set a good example or others.