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Ordination to the deaconate by His Eminence Archbishop Makarios of Australia in Canberra, ACT

On Saturday, April 2, His Eminence Archbishop Makarios of Australia officiated at the Church of Saint Nicholas, in Canberra, assisted by their Graces, Bishop Elpidios of Kyanea and Bishop Bartholomew of Charioupolis.

During the Divine Liturgy, in an atmosphere of spiritual joy and special emotion, His Eminence performed the ordination of Monk Meliton to the Deaconate, a young man born and raised in the Australian capital, he studied at the Greek Orthodox Theological College of Saint Andrew in Sydney and was tonsured a monk at The Greek Orthodox Monastery of Saint George in Yellow Rock, New South Wales.

In his ordination speech, Father Meliton referred with gratitude and infinite filial love to the Archbishop of Australia, acknowledging that he inspired him and directed his steps to the Holy Altar.

“Thank you from the bottom of my heart for believing in me and accepting me to be part of the Holy Clergy,” he said in an introductory speech, promising to devote his entire existence to serving the needs of the Holy Archdiocese of Australia.

Characterising as a privilege for the local Church, the presence of His Eminence Archbishop Makarios of Australia at her leadership, stressing among other things the paternal affection with which he surrounds his flock and that he inspires, elevates and regenerates all people spiritually.

“It is a blessing from God that we have you as Archbishop,” he said, adding that “what you are and what we have is a true father who cares, loves and is willing to sacrifice his life for the benefit of his flock every day.”

The new Deacon, Father Meliton, then referred to the persons who played a decisive role in his life and journey in the Church, offering him abundant love, support and guidance.

After thanking the Bishops for their presence at the Ordination, he underlined the full support and generosity of Bishop Bartholomew of Charioupolis, Archiepiscopal Vicar of Canberra, while he spoke with warm words and expressed his great gratitude to the Protosyggellos of the Holy Archdiocese, Very Rev. Father Christophoros Krikelis.

In addition, he thanked from the bottom of his heart the Archimandrite of the Ecumenical Throne, Very Rev. father Ieronymos Voultsidis, Abbot of The Holy Monastery of Saint George, Yellow Rock,, and the brotherhood of the monastery, who, as he acknowledged, welcomed him with open arms and instilled in him the orthodox mindset during the period of their coexistence in the monastery.

He also made special mention of the Proistamenos of the Greek Orthodox Church of Saint Nicholas, Canberra,, Father Petros Kipouros, remembering that he had guided him to the Orthodox faith and, in particular, that he had advised him, when he finished high school, to study at the Greek Orthodox Theological College of Saint Andrew in Sydney.

Finally, with touching comments, he expressed his gratitude to his parents and three siblings, for the continued support they provided him.

For his part, His Eminence Archbishop Makarios of Australia, addressed paternal advice to the soon to be ordained Deacon, urging him to dedicate his whole existence to God and the Church and to walk imitating the sacrificial love of Christ himself.

“You no longer live for yourself, but for Christ,” His Eminence stressed, paraphrasing the words of the Apostle Paul from his Second Epistle to the Corinthians. “This is the foundation of what constitutes the essence of the priesthood,” His Eminence pointed out, noting that “Christ must be the center of our existence and the very core of our sacred ministry.”

The Archbishop then focused on the value of the Sacrament of the Eucharist, noting that it is essentially the continuation of the Incarnation of the Lord, and pointed out that all other dimensions of a clergyman’s ministry have their beginning and end in the Eucharist.

He also urged Father Meliton to defend the unity of the Church, keeping engraved in his heart and mind the words of Christ to the Apostles: “In this all know that you are my disciples, that you love one another” (John 13:35).

Concluding his speech, His Eminence Archbishop Makarios of Australia recognised the many gifts that the new Deacon has and gave him His paternal blessing to fight for the highest Christ-centered values throughout his ministry in the Church, to be surrounded by the grace of God and to become a vessel through which the grace of God will be transmitted to all the people around him.

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