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Archbishop Makarios of Australia: “Let our lives become an open letter, to be read by all people”

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On Sunday, 16 July 2023, the Divine Liturgy for the feast day of Saint Euphemia the Great Martyr was celebrated with ecclesiastical splendour, in the Church of Saint Euphemia, in Bankstown, Sydney, and was presided over by His Eminence Archbishop Makarios of Australia, who first officiated at the Matins service and then also preached the homily.

His Eminence Archbishop Makarios referred to the life of Saint Euphemia and her miraculous intervention, during the period of the Monophysite disputes. According to the life of the Saint, the two opposing sides in favour of the truth, wrote texts with their positions and placed them inside the coffin where the relics of the Saint were kept. When they later opened the coffin, they found that the Saint was holding the Orthodox text on her chest, while the Monophysite text was at her feet. This miraculous action of the Saint informed the God-bearing Fathers to rightly teach the word of truth.

At the same time, His Eminence analysed the Gospel reading, focusing on Christ’s words to the Apostles: “You are the light of the world”. This characterisation is not limited to the Holy Apostles, His Eminence Archbishop Makarios pointed out and explained further: “You are the light of the world. All Orthodox Christians who believe in Christ and practice our faith. However, to be a light to the world means that the person shines bright with their life and not with their words. The person enlightens with their actions and not by their teachings. They shine bright mainly by their example. Christ said we are the light of the world. And this is a great honour, but also a great responsibility. Our life must become an open letter, read by all people. And then we will truly be the light of the world.”

After the conclusion of the Divine Liturgy, the Archbishop distributed the antidoron to the large congregation and afterwards, a meal was held in his honour, during which the youth of the Parish performed traditional Greek dances. His Eminence Archbishop Makarios of Australia, during his address to the congregation, thanked the Parish Priest, Fr. Panagiotis Protopsaltis, and the President of the Community, Mr. Christos Spyropoulos, for the reception and their hospitality, and congratulated them for the excellent work they are doing, especially in the field of Education.

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