On Monday, the 2nd/15th of February 2016, the Patriarchate commemorated the “Hypapante of the Lord at the Temple of Solomon” at the Monastic Church of Sts Constantine and Helen, His Beatitude Theophilos, Patriarch of Jerusalem, officiating. The feast was also observed at the Monastery of Panagia Seida Naya, to the northwest of the Church of the Resurrection, in the Christian quarter.

The feast commemorates the presentation of the Lord by the ever-virgin Maria and Joseph at the Temple of Solomon, forty days after His birth in the flesh, so that He be consecrated according to the Law of Moses. There, the Lord was welcomed by Simeon the Just, who held Him in his arms and said: “Now Lord, You are releasing Your bond-servant to depart in peace, according to Your word; For my eyes have seen Your salvation, which You have prepared in the presence of all peoples, a light of revelation to the gentiles and the glory of Your people Israel”.

Vespers and the divine Liturgy at the aforementioned Monastery were led by Archbishop Aristarchos of Constantina. Co-officiating were Archimandrite Ignatios, hegumen at the Village of the Shepherds, Archimandrite Makarios, hegumen at St Nicodemus Monastery, and Archimandrite Paisios, hegumen at the Monastery of the Prophet Elias. Archimandrites Aristovoulos and Eusebius sang in Greek with students of the Patriarchal School, Dr Nikolaos Ninos, and pilgrims from Cyprus. The choir of St James Cathedral sang in Arabic under Mr Rimon Kamar on the left, in the presence of Greek Consulate members, nuns and pilgrims from Greece, Russia, Romania, Ukraine, local Arabic-speaking faithful and members of the Greek parish praying in piety and joy.

During the divine Liturgy, Patriarch Theophilos proceeded to venerate with Hagiotaphite Fathers.

His Eminence Aristarchos preached the Word of God to the pious congregation in Greek and Arabic (see video).

After the holy metalepsis, the distribution of the antidoron and supplication at the hegumeneion, Primates and the congregation were hosted to a reception by Abbess Seraphima.

From the Secretariat-General