Bishop Photios: Hagia Sophia

Hagia Sophia

Hagia Sophia became a mosque,
before the eyes and ears of the whole world
sitting in the front and the last row.
And she cries – where are my children?

Where are the monarchs that I raised?
Where is the clergy that adorned me
with the blessed beauty?
Where are the soldiers who defended me?
Where are the prayers of the holy
who transformed me into Heaven?

Where are the deaf and the blind
who received healing inside me,
the lame who stood up,
the mute who spoke?

O, my children, of Christian and Orthodox stem,
again you are left without spiritual lighthouse,
surrendering me to desolation.

Where are my Easter and Christmas Liturgies,
mosaics that lifted the earth to Heaven?
All gone in a blink of an eye,
turning me into a widow.

Where are the Patriarchs
to announce the Blessed Kingdom?
Where are the countless choirs
that overtoned the angelic?
Where are the repenters, ascetics
and the contrite hearts
who found solace here?

O, my heart is filled with sorrow,
for those that seek God are gone.
Within me no longer is celebrated
Hagia Sophia, without whom the universe
is ruled by madness.
Where to now, and how?

Desolate and solitary I stand,
clothed in dark robes,
grieving for children who are gone,
who no longer walk the manifold trails
and sail the sundry seas to reach me,
and be raised to Heaven by my magnificent domes.

Bishop Photios

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