Theplogiki 1 3 24

Awarding of degrees to the graduates of Saint Andrew’s Theological College in Sydney

Theplogiki 1 3 24

On Friday, 1 March 2024, in an atmosphere of joy and emotion, in Sydney, the Dedication Service of the new graduate students of Saint Andrew’s Theological College took place. His Eminence Archbishop Makarios of Australia, Dean of the Theological School, was represented by His Eminence Metropolitan Seraphim of Sevasteia, who presided over the Doxology Service which was held at the Cathedral of the Annunciation of Our Lady and then, in the same place, awarded the degrees to the students who successfully completed their studies at the College.

The ceremony was attended, among others, by Their Graces, Bishop Iakovos of Miletoupolis, Bishop Silouan of Sinope, Bishop Christodoulos of Magnesia and Bishop Bartholomew of Charioupolis, the Sub- Dean, Assoc. Professor Philip Kariatlis, and members of the teaching staff of the Theological College, as well as by a delegation of the Association of Theological Studies of Sydney (Sydney College of Divinity), consisting of Professors Ms. Diane Speed, Fr Gerard Kelly and Mr. James Harrison.

Metropolitan Seraphim, during the greeting he addressed, underlined the vital spiritual work, for the Orthodox Church of the fifth continent and for the wider society, which has been carried out for almost four decades by Saint Andrew’s Theological College. He also expressed everyone’s joy and satisfaction for the ever-increasing number of students, as well as its graduates.

He himself, having served the College as a Lecturer of Church Liturgics for over 30 years, as well as from the position of Sub-Dean, shared some of his memories from the day of its official Opening, in 1986, and conveyed an excerpt of the speech of the Late Archbishop Stylianos of Australia, founder and first Dean of the College. As he noted, among other things, the late Archbishop Stylianos commented, “Theology cannot be an object of individual thought and action. Theology is the deeper breathing of the entire body of the Church, illuminated by the Holy Spirit, which the Lord promises only to the “collectiveness” of the church’s communion and not to the isolation of the individual…”.

Afterwards, Metropolitan Seraphim wished to the graduates that the knowledge they acquired during their studies at the Theological College, will turn into a lived experience in their later lives. He urged them to remain in complete connection with Christ, so that their words and teaching would constitute a “ministry of restoration”, as the Paulian saying goes (2 Cor 5:8), and be able to offer hope, healing and comfort to a world that is greatly in need of the love of Christ.

In closing, Metropolitan Seraphim, on behalf of the Archbishop and Dean of Saint Andrew’s Theological College, thanked the Lecturers and other staff of the College and likewise, the representatives of the Sydney College of Divinity, which constitutes a leading Christian institution of higher education in Australia.

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