METROPOLITAN CHRISTODOULOS OF ELEFTHEROUPOLIS HAS SLEPT IN THE LORD
The Patriarchate of Jerusalem sadly announces that Metropolitan Christodoulos of Eleftheroupolis slept in the Lord on Tuesday, 1st/14th December 2021, at 11 a.m.
The departed and dearly beloved brother of ours was born in Kamares of Heraklion Crete, studied at the Patriarchal School of Jerusalem and joined the Hagiotaphite Brotherhood at an early age. He studied Classical Literature at the University of Tel Aviv in Israel and Theology at the School of Theology of the University of Athens. He served at various positions at the Patriarchate; He was a teacher at the Seminary school of the Patriarchate, where he drew many students, a member of the Holy and Sacred Synod, Elder Dragoman, and defended the rights of the Rum Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem for the All-holy Shrines.
Over the last few years, his health deteriorated and he was hospitalized at the Israeli hospital, at the foundation “Saint John the merciful” in Athens and finally at the old people’s home of the Archdiocese of Crete, where he left his last breath.
His funeral service was observed on Wednesday 2nd/ 15th December 2021 at 1:00 p.m. at the Holy Monastery of Panagia Kalyviani, after the permission of the local Metropolitan Makarios of Gortyna and Arkadia. His Holy Beatitude our Father and Patriarch of Jerusalem Theophilos was represented by His Eminence Metropolitan Isychios of Kapitolias and the Exarch of the Holy Sepulchre in Greece, Archimandrite Raphael, who held the service, along with His Eminence Metropolitan Makarios of Gortyna and Arkadia, His Eminence Metropolitan Eugenios of Rethymno and Aulopotamos, and Reverend Bishop Prodromos of Knossos, who represented the Holy Archdiocese of Crete.
The obituary was delivered by His Eminence Metropolitan Isychios of Kapitolias as follows:
“Your Eminence Metropolita Makarios of Gortyna and Arkadia,
Reverend Abbess Timothei,
Pious people of God,
The departure to the Lord of our beloved brother in Christ, and co-celebrant, Metropolitan Christodoulos of Eleftheroupolis and Elder Dragoman of the Patriarchate, has gathered us in this modest congregation to see him off in his course to the eternal habitations of heaven.
In awe, we stand before his corpse and wonder how this mystery of death “has come to us”, how did we people assimilate the death and decay. We sorrow, not like those “who have no hope”, but in the sorrow that our Lord Jesus Christ had when His eyes were filled with tears before the tomb of His friend, the four-day dead Lazarous. This sorrow is comforted by our faith in the Incarnate, Crucified and Resurrected Lord. “If God rose from the dead, we also shall be risen”. The tomb simply receives our body, its material is decomposed, while the soul is transferred to the Lord until the common resurrection.
In hope of the resurrection and eternal life, we see off our brother in Christ, and in respect of his memory we mention that he was born in the nearby town of Kamares, he was orphaned on the side of his father before his birth, as the German conquerors murdered him, and he was raised by his pious mother Chrysi, who guided him to the Holy Sepulchre and the Patriarchate.
After his education at the Patriarchal School of Jerusalem, he joined the Hagiotaphite Brotherhood and was ordained Deacon and Priest. He studied classical literature at the Hebrew University of Tel Aviv, and Theology at the University of Athens. He served at various ministries of the Patriarchate, as Hegoumen at the Holy Monastery of Saint Charalambos, Hegoumen of Ramle, always having the help of his blessed mother Chrysi and his aunt Agne, a Nun of Megali Panagia.
He was ordained a Bishop and received the title of Metropolitan and served as Dragoman of the Patriarchate for many years, bravely defending the confirmed rights of our nation at the Holy Shrines. He celebrated the Divine Liturgy in them, at the Holy Sepulchre and the Horrendous Golgotha, and attended the services at the Monastic Church of Saints Constantine and Helen. In great patience, he endured the illness of the muscles that made him bedridden in Jerusalem and at the old people’s home of the Archdiocese of Crete, where he left his last breath.
We entreat the Lord to count his aforementioned works and uncomplaining patience during his illness and forgive whatever he may have sinned as man, voluntary or involuntary and place him with the righteous and the saints in His Kingdom.
The Hagiotaphite Brotherhood, which I represent by order of His Holy Beatitude our Father and Patriarch of Jerusalem Theophilos III, expresses its thanks to the old-people’s home of Saint Merciful in Athens, where the departed was hospitalized by the care of Fr Emanuel, to the Archdiocese of Crete and especially to his nephew, Hagiotaphite Archimandrite Stephen, the Exarch of the Holy Sepulchre in Russia, who looked after him in devotion during all the stages of his illness, to the Holy Metropolis of Gortyna and Arkadia and its shepherd, His Eminence Metropolitan Makarios, to the Abbess Timothei of the Holy Monastery of Panagia Kalyviani, and to all who honour his memory with their presence in this funeral service.
May his memory be everlasting”.
Obituaries were also read by the Mayor of Faistos Mr Gregory Nikolidakis on behalf of Faistos Municipality and all the Messara district, and the Vice Mayor Mr Nikolaos Kargakis on behalf of the departed’s students at the Patriarchal School of Zion, honouring and thanking him.
The Patriarchate of Jerusalem and the Hagiotaphite Brotherhood thank all who honoured his memory, especially the Archdiocese of Crete and the Holy Metropolis of Gortyna and Arkadia and the Holy Monastery of Panagia Kalyviani, in the cemetery of which the departed to heavens our brother in Christ was buried.