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Fundraising Tea for the Missionary Works of the Archdiocesan District of Adelaide and presentation on “Romiosyni”

With the blessing of His Eminence Archbishop Makarios of Australia, on Sunday 18 February 2024, a fundraising afternoon tea was held in support of the missionary works of the Archdiocese in the District of Adelaide.

The District of Adelaide covers a vast territory – incorporating all of South Australia and the Northern Territory, and also taking under its accessibility some remote outback towns close to the border. His Grace Bishop Silouan of Sinope, Archiepiscopal Vicar for the District of Adelaide, with the blessing and guidance of His Eminence Archbishop Makarios of Australia, has made a conscious effort to visit all parts of the District for where it is known that there are Orthodox Christians.

This effort has led to the visitation of many remote cities and towns, culminating in the two-week transcontinental/outback expedition from 23rd of November to the 6th of December 2023 (this trip was reported in a series of three articles in the Vema last year). These missionary trips had garnered some interest among the faithful in Adelaide who had heard about them, with many expressing a desire to hear more about them.

In response to these calls, a presentation was prepared of a series of missionary trips dating back to 2021, with the highlight being photos from the transcontinental trip. The slide show was presented by His Grace and assisted by Fr Jeremy Krieg as part of the fundraising tea that was kindly hosted by the Cypriot Club and catered by the ladies of the Central Philoptochos.

Over 50 people attended and listened to the presentation, which gave them a good sense of the scale and scope of what the Archdiocese has, by the grace of God and with His Eminence’s blessing and pastoral oversight, managed to achieve in the District of Adelaide over the past few years. The map highlighting all the places that have been visited in recent years was particularly illuminating. Over $2,600 was raised at the function to go towards the ongoing missionary activities.

Later that same evening, again, with the blessing of His Eminence Archbishop Makarios, the parish of St Andrew’s Noarlunga also held a presentation by renowned scholar Mr George Frazis (Associate Professor at Charles Darwin University), with the title “From the History of our Nation, Romanity – Romania, Eastern Roman Empire”.

This was the first of a series of “Parishioners’ Night” organised for every 3rd Sunday at the Parish. His Grace left the missionary presentation to support the Noarlunga event, only to find that the first half-hour was accidentally (but beautifully) hijacked to become a further Q&A on the District’s missionary activities. Mr Frazis was highly accommodating – encouraging this discussion and speaking of the importance of this missionary work.

After this brief but enlightening interlude, Mr Frazis continued with his presentation about the era of the Eastern Roman Empire, a civilization with a Greek Orthodox character which endowed East and West not only with its material but also and mainly with the cultural and spiritual riches. He also discussed how this Christian Empire shaped not only Greek Orthodoxy but also the way of thinking of modern Greeks. The evening ended with poems read in Greek and English about the glory of our blessed Romiosini.

In addition to His Grace, the lecture was graced with the presence of the secretary of the Archdiocese in Adelaide, Mr Theodoros Dalianas, and the president of Inter-Communities Council, Dr Vladimir Devrelis. The next lecture will be held on Sunday, May 19 (after a break due to Great Lent), by Father Haralambos Koutandos, a priest and teacher of Greek, and Mr Antonis Litinas of Flinders University on the topic “The Greek language in the educational system of South Australia.”