On Saturday the 27th of October/9th of November 2013, His Beatitude Theophilos, our Father and Patriarch of Jerusalem, performed the divine Liturgy in the city of Ib’lin (Abelin), in Northern Israel, where the Patriarchate preserves a Rum Orthodox Community, numbering approximately five thousand members. The Community falls under the jurisdiction of the Holy Metropolis of Ptolemais, present-day Accra.

The liturgy was intended for the spiritual communication and collaboration between his Beatitude and His spiritual children; also, for the installation of recently ordained priest, f. Savvas Haj. Father Savvas will serve as assistant parish priest to the elder f. Spyridon, who has been serving the Community of the city of Ib’lin for several years now.

Co-officiating were the Prelates of the Patriarchate, the Most Reverend Kyriakos, Metropolitan of Nazareth, and His Eminence Theodosios, Archbishop of Sevasteia.

During the koinonikon, His Beatitude addressed the installed priest, f. Savvas, and the pious congregation. This is an excerpt from his address:

[…] To increase and establish our holy zeal, we have proceeded, upon a Synodic decision, to the appointment of two parish priests, who are to co-officiate with the venerable and grey-haired priest and Steward, Spyridon Aouad. These new labourers in our Lord’s vineyard are your fellow parishioners, the recently ordained f. Savvas, and Steward f. Demetrios, for the time being a minister in the Community of Haifa.

Let us, my dears, summon our Father, the God of lights, so that his Only Son and Word, He who is the true light, may illuminate their faces and guide their steps towards the achievement of His commandments, by means of the mediation of the Mother of God, the Ever Virgin Mary, and the supplications of the Holy Great-Martyrs, St Demetrius and George. Amen.

At the conclusion of the divine Liturgy, during a reception held in a hall next to the church, the installed priest, f. Savvas, addressed His Beatitude. In his address, f. Savvas extended his thanks for the privilege to serve as priest in his hometown of Ib’lin. In His reply, His Beatitude wished f. Savvas a fruitful diaconate ministry, endowed with hieratic consciousness, diligence and dedication.

From the Secretariat-General