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Patriarchate of Jerusalem: Doxology of the National Anniversary of 28 October 1940

This Doxology was offered as thanks to God for His help in our nation to defend against the Italian military invasion of 1940 and to shake off the barbaric German Nazi occupation of World War II during the years 1941-1944 and as a prayer for the repose of the souls of those who fought heroically and fell in battle or were fraudulently and unjustly executed collectively or individually.

The doxology was presided over by His Beatitude Patriarch Theofilos of Jerusalem, along with the Bishops and Priests of the Patriarchate, in the presence of the Consul General of Greece in Jerusalem, Mr. Dimitrios Angelosopoulos, members of the Church of Jerusalem and our Greek Orthodox Arabic-speaking flock.

After the Doxology in the hall of the Patriarchate, His Beatitude spoke with the following address:

“Your Excellency Consul General of Greece
Mr Dimitrios Angelesopoulos,

Dear Holy Fathers and Brothers,

Beloved brothers and sisters in Christ,

Filled with national pride, we celebrate today the anniversary of October 28, 1940, which belongs to the leading milestones in the history of the Greek nation. We celebrate the shining of the light of righteousness over the darkness of injustice. We celebrate the dominance of common universal moral values, which Greece overcame, over the forces of greed and brutality.

October 28, 1940, is an important example of self-sacrifice in defence of the honour, freedom, independence and national territorial integrity of our heroically fallen fathers and brothers. This fight was a holy fight against the arrogance and oppressive power of the invaders of the Nazi and Fascist atrocities, which were imprinted in the hideous concentration camps of our innocent fellow human beings.

For this Our Mediocrity, accompanied by the honourable members of our Venerable Holy Sepulchre Brotherhood as well as pious people, went to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, where we sent thanksgiving praise to the Holy Triune God ” giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ” (cf. 1 Cor. 15:57); ” and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith” (1 John 5:4) according to Saint John the Theologian.

Moreover, we prayed for eternal memory and blessed repose of the souls of those who heroically fought and gloriously martyred for the name of Christ, our nation and its blessed motherland.

The epic of 1940 demonstrated that justice and peace are not simply metaphysical or theoretical values, but have a divine existence. Because, as the wise Paul says, “God is not for disorder, but for peace” (1 Cor. 14:33), and “his righteousness endures forever” (2 Cor. 9:9). We say this because the threat of Nazism and Fascism against humanity has now returned and acts under the guise of modernist principles and progress, but also of illegal and perverted ideas about the purpose of human existence and life. ” This wisdom descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish” (James 3:15) Saint James the Brother of God preaches.

October 28, 1940, is the day on which, admittedly, the eternal slogan “now above all the struggle” resounded throughout Greece. This struggle, which was a struggle for faith and country, as well as for the spiritual ideals of the Greek Nation, was recognized internationally as a miracle of the faith of the Greeks in the God of Justice, our Lord Jesus Christ and the most blessed Theotokos, His Mother.

Also noteworthy is the contribution of the Greek Orthodox Church through the active participation of its senior and junior clergy and also the military priests, who, through the spiritual word of the Gospel of the crucified and risen Christ, strengthened the moral and patriotic sentiment of the Greek warriors. Needless to say, among the heroically fallen fighters, the hundreds of killed priests can be distinguished.

Today’s solemn anniversary of the unrepeatable epic of 1940 is particularly important for humanity in general and our region, the Middle East in particular, tested by war and violent conflicts. “Ask for peace and pursue it” (Ps. 33:15) the psalmist exclaims. ” Recompense to no man evil for evil…If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men” (Rom. 12,17-18) the Apostle Paul orders.

We, ministers of the divine commandments and ” Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith” (Heb. 12:2), we pray, as “This Lord of peace has given us peace in all things and in all ways” (cf. B Thess. 3:16). The significant landmark of the epic of 1940 calls us, on the one hand, to be vigilant, on the other hand to preserve the sacred legacy of the moral and spiritual values of the Greek-Christian heritage and the Roman Orthodox faith and holy tradition, for which our Fathers and brothers sacrificed themselves with their honourable blood.

Concluding, let us exclaim:

Long live the “No” of October 28, 1940!

Long live the pious race of the Roman Orthodox!

Long live Greece!

Long live our Holy Sepulchre Brotherhood!”

From Secretariat-General

Source: Patriarchate of Jerusalem

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