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The Faithful of Perth honour Sts Constantine and Helene, Equal to the Apostles

The three day celebrations for the feast day of Saints Constantine and Helen continued to be celebrated in Northbridge in the homonymous church of the Greek Orthodox Community of Perth on Saturday the 21st of May. The Matins and Hierarchical Divine Liturgy was Officiated by His Grace Bishop Elpidios of Kyanea.

Present at the service were many dignitaries and representatives from the Greek Community in Perth. This included Mrs Georgia Karasiotou, Consul for Greece in Perth, and the Vice Consul for Maritime Affairs, Mr Nikos Papakonstantinou; Mr Paul Afkos OAM, President of the Hellenic Community of WA; Mr Jim Manifis, President of the Castellorizian Association of WA and Mrs Faye Katris, President of the Castellorizian Ladies Association (Megisti). Also present were students and teachers from St Andrew’s Grammar Greek Orthodox Day School.

During his sermon, His Grace emphasised the journey of St Constantine to sainthood. Certain critics, His Grace explained, find it difficult to accept that Constantine is a saint because he was a political figure who, at times in his life, committed various serious sins. However, His Grace reminded the faithful that we must not forget that Constantine’s crimes were committed during a time when he was an idolater; a time when he was still worshiping the sun, and not when he was a Christian. Constantine repented for his grave sins and confessed them to a spiritual father towards the end of his life and then was baptised. His Grace went on to explain, that Constantine was not born a saint but he became a saint as in the case of the Apostle Paul, the Prophet David, St Moses the Ethiopian, St Mary of Egypt, St Augustine, the Apostle Peter and so forth.  Therefore just because Constantine committed sins, this did not preclude him from sainthood. On the contrary, the Fathers of the Church teach us that to sin reminds us that we are human but to not repent for our sins is what is actually evil and demonic. No one, except for Jesus Christ, is sinless. It is the repentance of St Constantine which is the example of sainthood for us and reminds us that we too are invited by God into the journey towards sainthood, which is only achieved through true repentance.

At the conclusion of the service a procession around the church took place with an historic icon of Sts Constantine and Helene from the island of Lesvos.

Following the service, a morning tea for all the faithful was hosted in the Parish hall.

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