On Monday, January 16/29, 2024, the Patriarchate celebrated the feast of the veneration of the Holy chains of the Apostle Peter.
On this day, the Church commemorates the chaining of the Apostle Peter, that is, the event of the release of the Apostle Peter by an angel from his chains and prison as narrated in the book of the Acts of the Apostles (Acts 12, 1-19), when “Herod the king stretched forth his hands to vex certain of the church. And he killed James the brother of John with the sword. (Acts 12,1-2), ” And because he saw it pleased the Jews, he proceeded further to take Peter also” (Acts 12,3); ” And when Herod would have brought him forth, that night Peter was sleeping… And, behold, the angel of the Lord came upon him, and a light shined in the prison: and he smote Peter on the side, and raised him up, saying, Arise up quickly. And his chains fell off from his hands” (Acts 12,6-7). Peter followed the angel until he brought him to the Iron Gate that led to the city, when it was automatically opened to them and Peter realised that an angel of the Lord had come to him to protect him from the hand of Herod (c.f. Acts 12, 8-11).
This wonderful event, described in the twelfth chapter of the Acts of the Apostles, was celebrated in the place of the imprisonment of the Apostle Peter, in which for centuries there was a Holy Monastery and pilgrimage under the name of Saint Nicodemus, the hidden disciple of the Lord, or “the place of Lentils” because it is believed that the conversation between Nicodemus of the Pharisees and the Lord took place there (Jn. 3) and because in times of pestilence they distributed small portions of lentils and other food items. This Monastery is located between the Monastery of Praetorium and the Monastery of the Holy Ancestors of God, Joachim and Anna.
There, Vespers was held on Sunday afternoon and the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy on Monday morning, which was presided over by His Eminence Archbishop Theophanes of Gerassa, with the co-celebration of Archimandrite Philoumenos, Priest Nectarios and Hierodeacon Alexander.
During the Liturgy, His Beatitude Patriarch Theophilos and the Holy Sepulchre Fathers came to venerate the Holy Church.
The Patriarchal and Episcopal entourages as well as the congregation received refreshments from the good carer of the Monastery, Hegoumen Archimandrite Makarios.
Source: Patriarchate of Jerusalem