On Wednesday, May 27/ June 8, 2022, the Chief of the Hellenic National Defence General Staff Mr Constantinos Floros visited the Patriarchate, accompanied by his wife Anna-Maria Tsirikoni and his associates.

The group was received by His Beatitude our Father and Patriarch of Jerusalem Theophilos and Hagiotaphite Fathers.

Mr Floros said he feels honour and piety as this is his first visit to the Holy Land and the Patriarchate.

His Beatitude explained to the Chief of the Hellenic National Defence General Staff and his associates the importance of Jerusalem and especially of the City inside the Walls, whose heart is Golgotha, the Holy Sepulchre and the Church of the Holy Sepulchre which was built by Saint Helen.

The Patriarchate of Jerusalem is the guardian of these shrines, along with the Hagiotaphite Brotherhood. This mission of safeguarding the Holy Places is carried out by the Patriarchate and the Hagiotaphite Brotherhood since the Byzantine Christian era and from AD 638, the times of the Arab occupation with the Patriarch Sophronios and from the Ottoman occupation to the present, over three Governmental states, of Israel, the Palestinian Autonomy, Jordan and Qatar.

By the Divine power and the power of its history, the Patriarchate continues its pacifying and conciliatory mission, it faces and overcomes the recent challenges against the Christians. The role of the Patriarchate is also to bring unity among the Orthodox Churches, especially under the current circumstances.

The General Mr Floros thanked His Beatitude for His informative words and asked for His prayers for the strengthening of the Hellenic army, especially under the present political conjunctures.

For this visit, His Beatitude offered the General a cross and a book of the history of Jerusalem by blessed Archbishop Chrysostom Papadopoulos, a silver painting of Jerusalem and an icon of the Theotokos, and blessings from Jerusalem for the members of the group.

Mr Floros offered His Beatitude a board of the General Staff of the National Defence and the book “Τά ἐθνικά Εὐαγγέλια τοῦ Ἱεροῦ Ἀγῶνος”.

Asking for His Beatitude’s blessings, the Delegation led by Mr Floros left to venerate the Holy Sepulchre.

From Secretariat-General