His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros of America
Tampa Bay Area Clergy Welcome Luncheon
Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church
January 5, 2022
Beloved Brother in the Lord, Metropolitan Alexios of Atlanta,
Your Grace Bishop Sebastian de Zela,
Dear fathers and dear brothers in Christ,
I greet you all in the Holy Name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, who comes to the banks of the Jordan for our salvation and the redemption of the world.
It is a wonderful opportunity to be with you this afternoon and experience once again the hospitality of our clergy in metropolitan Atlanta. Tarpon Springs Theophany celebrations are truly one of the highlights of any church year. And to see so many brothers gathered for these solemnities brings great joy to my heart.
I would like to wish you all a new year full of grace, happiness and health. We still face many challenges with the pandemic, but I believe our perseverance and perseverance will be rewarded. We will pass to the other side of this world problem; although it was a very expensive price that was paid. I can’t think of a single parish that has remained intact.
I would like to commend you all for your acts of mercy and your ministry to the bereaved families in your communities. In these anxious and difficult times, your pastoral attention is essential for the mental, emotional and spiritual well-being of our faithful.
We have already passed the milestone of the centenary of Epiphany celebrations in Tarpon Springs. This happened in 2006, with the apostolic presence of Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, who again visited our sacred Archdiocese just a few months ago.
Sixteen years ago His All Holiness said of the Tarpon Springs event: “It is our fraternal duty to witness [the People of the United States] the beauty and content of faith.
This is precisely what we continue to do here in the Theophany celebrations. And that is what we will do across the Archdiocese as we celebrate 100 years of our existence as the world’s first Ecumenical Throne Eparchy.
Therefore, beloved Brethren in the Lord,
Thank you again for this warm welcome and for your fidelity in the exercise of your pastoral duties.
I pray that our time together will be spiritually uplifting, indeed, and strengthen us all for the year ahead – that is, a year filled with God’s grace and mercy, and in prayer, a new beginning for our archdiocese and the world.
May the Lord bless us all!