From Thursday, November 13/29, 2018, to Saturday, November 18/ December 1, 2018, His Beatitude our Father and Patriarch of Jerusalem Theophilos will be on a visit to Romania as a guest of His Beatitude the Patriarch of Romania Daniel, in order to officiate the co-celebration of the Divine Liturgy at the newly-built and recently consecrated magnificent Cathedral of the Holy Apostle Andrew the First-called. 

In this formal visit His Beatitude the Patriarch of Jerusalem is being escorted by the Most Reverend Archbishop Aristarchos of Constantina, the Most Reverend Archbishop Christophoros of Kyriakoupolis, the Hegoumen of the Holy Monastery of Saints George and Ioannis Hozeva Archimandrite Constantinos and Archdeacon Mark.

Upon His arrival at Bucharest airport, His Beatitude was welcomed by the representatives of the Patriarch of Romania Daniel, Reverend Bishop Timotheos of Brahovionil, former representative of the Patriarch of Romania in Jerusalem, and by the present representative Archimandrite Theophilos and his associate Fr. Ioannis, the Manager of the Foreign Affairs Department of the Patriarchate of Romania Fr. Mihail Titsa and Priest Mihail.

After a short rest at the Marriot hotel, His Beatitude was welcomed by His Beatitude the Patriarch of Romania Daniel, by the entourage of the Hierarchs and Priests along with many people, and He participated in a Doxology at the old Cathedral of Saints Constantine and Helen and Saint Demetrios, where He delivered the following address;

“Blessed is the man whom thou choosest, and causest to approach unto thee, that he may dwell in thy courts: we shall be satisfied with the goodness of thy house, even of thy holy temple” (Psalm 65:4).

Beloved Brother in Christ and co-celebrant, Your Beatitude Patriarch of Romania Daniel,

Keeping the evangelic and ecclesiastical tradition of the tradition in Christ regarding the communion of love, we have responded to the noble invitation of Your quite dear and profound Beatitude and we have arrived today from the Holy City of Jerusalem, the City of the Great King, to the great, historic and blessed country of Romania, in much delight and jubilation, in order to participate at the festivities of the Patriarchate of Romania on the commemoration of the Holy and Glorious Apostle Andrew the First-called, founder of the Church of Romania, at the recently consecrated and magnificent Holy Church dedicated to him, a jewel of architecture in the city of Bucharest and in all Romania, and the fruit of the reverence of the Romanian people. We will also participate at the national festivities on the independence anniversary of Romania.

During this blessed visit of Ours, we have been given the opportunity to convey the blessing of the God-receiving Cave of Holy Bethlehem, of the Horrendous Golgotha and of the Holy Sepulchre, with the experience of which we receive God’s grace each and every day, as appointed guards of these shrines. We also bring with Us the petrahilion of Saint Ioannis the New Hozevite from Romania, and part of his hair, as a faithful testimony of his holiness, for the sanctification of the faithful who will be venerating them. We also carry the holy relics of the Holy Fathers of Hozeva. We thank You, Your Beatitude, Patriarch of Romania Daniel for Your brotherly invitation along with the honour made to Us for welcoming Us in person and by the members of the sacred Hierarchy of the Orthodox Church of Romania and the clergy of the Christian people, and congratulate You as well as all the Romanian people on the double ecclesiastical and national festivities. We foretaste of the delight and rapture for our sanctification through the celebration of the bloodless sacrifice tomorrow, on the commemoration of the Holy and Glorious Apostle Andrew, by whose intercessions we beseech the Lord for the protection of the Orthodox Romanian Church and all the Romanian people.”

His Beatitude the Patriarch of Romania Daniel returned the address as follows;

 “Your Beatitude Theophilos III, Patriarch of Jerusalem and All Palestine,

On behalf of the members of the Holy Synod of the Romanian Orthodox Church, of the Orthodox clergy and believers in Romania, with great love in Christ, we warmly welcome you in our Country and Church!

We remember with joy the last fraternal visit you made to Romania in 2014 at the feast of the Holy Venerable Demetrios the New, Protector of Bucharest. Today, Your Beatitude, we are again together in this historical Patriarchal Cathedral, preparing to celebrate the Holy Apostle Andrew, the First-called, Protector of Romania, and now of the National Cathedral, whose altar we consecrated a few days ago.

This is the main reason for Your Beatitude’s visit this year, to concelebrate for the first time in the patronal feast of the National Cathedral, as a testimony and occasion of holy communion and missionary cooperation between our Churches.

In this light of fraternal communion and pastoral co-responsibility, we pray to God to bestow His rich gifts upon Your Beatitude, wishing you to have a blessed visit to our Country and Church, together with the accompanying delegation members!”.

 At noon and in the evening, His Beatitude the Patriarch of Jerusalem Theophilos, along with His entourage, dinned with His Beatitude the Patriarch of Romania Daniel at His personal residence in the Patriarchate.

 From Secretariat-General