On Tuesday, 19 December 2023, Mr. Nikolaos Dendias, Minister of National Defence of Greece, paid a visit to His Beatitude Pope and Patriarch Theodoros II of Alexandria and All Africa.
Welcoming the Minister, Patriarch Theodoros expressed his joy for this visit, underlining the harmonious relations between Greece and Egypt, “which, cooperating harmoniously and constructively, also support the multifaceted work of the Patriarchate on the continent of the future, while affirming the strong example that peoples can live peacefully in the unifying area of the Mediterranean,” as he said.
At the same time, the Patriarch once again expressed the gratitude of the Church of Alexandria to the Greek and Egyptian State for their uninterrupted understanding of its humanitarian and social work in general. In the end, Patriarch Theodoros awarded the Minister the highest honorary distinction of the Throne, the Grand Cross of St. Mark with a star.
In response, the Minister thanked the Patriarch of Alexandria for the warm welcome and the award of the honorary distinction and expressed the undiminished support of the Greek Government to the Patriarchate of Alexandria and All Africa, underlining its role as “an important link with all African states and as a fervent supporter of peaceful creativity, progress, and brotherhood among peoples without discrimination.”
An exchange of commemorative gifts followed, as well as a special meeting of Patriarch Theodoros with the Minister in the Patriarchal Office.
Present at the meeting were Metropolitan Panteleimon of Naucratis, Chief Secretary of the Holy Synod, Metropolitan Narcissus of Pelusium, Patriarchal Vicar of Alexandria, the Consul General of Greece in the Great City of Alexandtia, Mr. Ioannis Pyrgakis, the President of the Greek Community of Alexandria, Mr. Andreas Vafiadis, the Captain of the Hellenic Navy, Konstantinos Varouxis, liaison of the Greek Navy with the Egyptian Navy, as well as high-ranking associates of the Minister.