On Tuesday the 14th/27th of August 2013, the rite of the Lamentations or the Epitaph of Theotokos was performed by the Patriarchate at the Bier of the Mother of God in Gethsemane.
«I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together ».
With these words fifty years ago he concluded his legendary speech in the American capital the man who dared to dream at difficult times, the activist who dared to fight with peaceful means the nightmare of racism, the fighter who dared to pull out the miserable white hood from an entire country. Fifty years after mankind leans its bow and pays homage and memory on Martin Luther King, the man who with his word and his action contributed as few to the elimination of racial discrimination and to the consolidation of racial equality.
On Monday, August 19, 2013, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew arrived in his native island of Imvros (Gökçeada). In his home village of Sts. Theodores, His All-Holiness inaugurated the reopening of a Greek primary school with an Aghiasmo service and with the first ringing of a bell since its closing in 1964. The newly restored and reopened school, which is also named after the village's patrons, Sts. Theodores, was granted permission to reopen by the Turkish Ministry of Education.
On Monday the 12th/25th of August 2013, a procession took place intended for the descent of the icon of Theotokos from the Dependency of Gethsemane opposite the All-holy Church of the Resurrection, to the Church of the Dormition of Theotokos in Gethsemane, wherein lies the Tomb of the Virgin Mary.
Његово Блаженство Патријарх антиохијски и свега Истока г. Јован служио је у недељу, 25. августа 2013. године, свету архијерејску Литургију у манастиру Пресвете Богородице у Сајднаји у Сирији.
From the speech of His Beatitude John X in Saydnaya, 25 August 2013
Beloved brothers and sisters: I come today to Saydnaya to meet bright faces dressed with the zeal of God and good souls dominated by the love of their fellow man and the love of the homeland. I come to Saydnaya which lies near to the Sanctuary of the Virgin Mary protected by the red mantle of St. George and under the shadowing wings of the Cherubim. I come to Saydnaya spoken of in the books of history, the chronicles of travelers and the report of miracles. I come to kneel before the Virgin of Saydnaya and ask her to visit us and infuse our souls with the splendor of her Son, so that our inner man might be transfigured as coals brightened with the love of God and the homelands. I come to this monastery to seek the prayers of the monks and nuns and the supplications of the visitors. I beg you to remember John X, who knew that the monastic prayers and the prayers of the faithful knock on the door of the Divine Mercy and pour forth the streams of Divine Clemency.