On Friday the 15th/28th of June 2014, the memory of the prophet Elisha (Eliseus) was honoured in the Jericho Monastery dedicated to him and to St Zacchaeus, where lie remnants of the sycamore tree he climbed as a child in order to see the Lord (Luke 19, 4).
The Monastery is dedicated to the prophet Elisha too, as he was active in this particular area, a student of the prophet Elias. It is precisely in Jericho where Elisha had transformed the waters of a living spring from bitter and deadly to sweet and drinkable, whereas in the river Jordan he received the grace of God through Elias’ mantle.
The divine Liturgy was led by Patriarch Theophilos of Jerusalem with co-officiating Primates: Metropolitan Isychios of Kapitolias, and Archbishops Aristarchos of Constanina and Methodios of Tabor. Also in attendance were Hagiotaphite Hieromonks and deacons, in the presence of Orthodox people from the little flock of Jericho, and pilgrims from Jerusalem and Greece.
During Communion, His Beatitude preached the Word of God in Greek.
At the end of the Holy Communion, His Beatitude blessed the grapes, already ripe due to Jericho’s warm climate.
After the divine Liturgy, the Hegoumen, Archimandrite Philoumenos, hosted all to a reception.
At noon, Archimandrite Philoumenos and Greek Orthodox (Rum Orthodox) from the town of Jericho hosted the Patriarchal retinue to meatless lunch at a restaurant.
From the Secretariat-General