About 800 kilometers north from Adelaide, in the state of South Australia, there is a unique monument, not only of Serbian but also of world culture and architecture. It is the church of Prophet Elijah, completely situated underground.
The Serbs who migrated to Coober Pedy, had a need for a spiritual, religious life. Our miners who were digging semi-precious stones, opal, dug one of the most beautiful pearls not only of the Serbian Orthodox, but also of the overall Christian culture. Since it is a desert area where temperatures reach above 40 degrees Celsius, our people found an unique and ingenious solution. They built a church underground, at the depth of 9 meters, 30 meters long. They have now a church, a church hall, a parish house and a church school – everything underground.
His Royal Highness Crown Prince Alexander II decorated His Holiness Patriarch Irinej of Serbia with the Grand Cross of the Royal Order of the Star of Karadjordje.
On the occasion of the Patron Saint Day of the Royal Family Karadjordjevic, His Holiness Irinej, Serbian Patriarch, served on Friday, December 13th, the Divine Liturgy in the Royal Chapel of Saint Andrew the First Called.
Andrew, the son of Jonah and brother of Peter, was born in Bethsaida and was a fisherman by trade. At first he was a disciple of St. John the Baptist, but when St. John pointed to the Lord Jesus, saying,Behold the Lamb of God! (John 1:36), Andrew left his first teacher and followed Christ. Then, Andrew brought his brother Peter to the Lord. Following the descent of the Holy Spirit, it fell by lot to the first apostle of Christ, St. Andrew, to preach the Gospel in Byzantium and Thrace, then in the lands along the Danube and in Russia around the Black Sea, and finally in Epirus, Greece and the Peloponnese, where he suffered. In Byzantium, he appointed St. Stachys as its first bishop; in Kiev, he planted a Cross on a high place and prophesied a bright Christian future for the Russian people; throughout Thrace, Epirus, Greece and the Peloponnese, he converted multitudes of people to the Faith and ordained bishops and priests for them. In the city of Patras, he performed many miracles in the name of Christ, and won many over to the Lord. Among the new faithful were the brother and wife of the Proconsul Aegeates. Angered at this, Aegeates subjected St. Andrew to torture and then crucified him. While the apostle of Christ was still alive on the cross, he gave beneficial instructions to the Christians who had gathered around.
On Tuesday, November 27, 2013, the Sacred and Holy Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate decided the formal inclusion in the List of Saints of the Orthodox Church of elder Porphyrios of Kafsokalivia and of venerable Meletios of Lardos.
- Feast Day of Saint Porphyrios of Kafsokalivia: December 2nd.
- Feast Day of Saint Meletios of Lardos: February 12th.
Asylum seekers from several African countries, recently accommodated near Belgrade, attended on 8 December 2013 the Holy Liturgy at the Obrenovac church.
After the end of the Liturgy, with Christian love and the hospitality of the host, a luncheon was prepared for the unfortunates from distant lands in the churchhall of the parish house; while the choir sang several Serbian folk songs wishing them a warm welcome to the Obrenovac church.