Serbian Patriarch Irinej has arrived to Istanbul (Constantinople) where the synaxis of Primates of Orthodox Churches begins today.
His Holiness, accompanied by Bishop Irinej of Backa, arrived to Istanbul yesterday. Metropolitan Amfilohije of Montenegro-Littoral arrived with protopresbyter Gajo Gajic two days earlier, due to his participation in the Preparatory Commission of this synaxis.
His Holiness Serbian Patriarch Irinej received Mrs. Slavka Draskovic, Director of the Office for Diaspora and the Serbs in the region of the Government of Republic of Serbia.
Mr. Vukman Krivokuc, assistant to Director, and Mrs. Borka Radovanovic attended the audience. The same day, Serbian Patriarch Irinej also received Professor Dr. Oliver Antic, advisor to President of the Republic.
On the invitation of His All-Holiness Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople, His Holiness Serbian Patriarch Irinej will stay in Istanbul from 5th to 9th of March 2014.
The reason of this visit is the meeting of all primates of the Canonical Local Orthodox Churches in order to discuss current topics in the Church and the society. Patriarch Irinej is accompanied by His Eminence Metropolitan Amfilohije of Montenegro and the Littoral and His Grace Bishop Irinej of Backa, as well as protopresbyter Gajo Gajic.
His Holiness Serbian Patriarch Irinej officiated the Holy Hierarchal Liturgy at the Cathedral church of Holy Michael in Belgrade with the concelebration of His Eminence Metropolitan Archangel Chrysostomos of Dodoni, of the Greek Orthodox Church, Venerable Archimandrite Spyridon (Katramados), Very Rev. Protopresbyter Panagiotos Karatasios, as well as priesthood of the Cathedral church.
At the end of the Holy Liturgy His Holiness Patriarch adressed the guests and wished them a nice stay in Serbia. Metropolitan Chrysostomos is President of the Synodal Office for pilgrimage tours, and he came to Belgrade to present the program of the Archdiocese of Athens at the International Tourism Fair. Besides Metropolitan Chrysostomos the official delegation of the Greek Church consists of: Archimandrite Spyridon (Katramados) – Secretary, Mr. Atanasios Raftopoulos and Mr. Vasilios Dzerpos – members, as well as Mr. Chrystos Petreas – special science advisor of the Synodal Office for pilgrimage tours of the Greek Church.
The feast of Saint Simeon the Myrrh-Gusher, marking nine centuries since his birth, was solemnly celebrated at the Hilandar Monastery
On the eve of the feast-day, February 28nd, His Grace Bishop Jovan of Ulpiana, Vicar of the Serbian Patriarch, as well as numerous guests from Mt. Athos and all the Serbian lands, arrived to the monastery. The Bishop was welcomed by the brotherhood and the abbot of the monastery. His Grace officiated the all-night Vigil service and the Hierarchal Liturgy next morning.