His Beatitude, Archbishop Kallinikos of Athens and all-Greece, accompanied by Their Eminences, Metropolitans Gerontios of Piraeus and Chrysostomos of Attica, His Grace, Bishop Photios of Marathon, Chief-Secretary of the Holy Synod, and Hieromonk Savvas (Mikiç) from Serbia visited the Orthodox Church of the Patristic Calendar in Romania under Metropolitan Vlasie for three days.
They departed Greece for Romania on Monday, December 9th, 2013, and returned on December 12th.
The delegation was received warmly at the airport in Bucharest by two Hierarchs of the Romanian Church as well as a number of priests. They were taken to the city of Cucova, to the Holy Trinity Monastery, they later traveled to the Holy Transfiguration Monastery in Slătioara where they were movingly received by His Eminence, Metropolitan Vlasie,and seven hierarchs. Archbishop Kallinikos and Metropolitan Vlasie reminisced about the ever-memorable Metropolitan Kallistos of Corinth's visit to Romania together with other hierarchs from Greece in the early 1980's. Archbishop Kallinikos was at that time Bishop of Achaia and Metropolitan Vlasie was a deacon.
Our hierarchs received a great blessing when they reverenced the relics of St. Glycerie († 1985). During their two-day stay in the Holy Transfiguration Monastery in Slătioara, there was a synodal deliberation with eight hierarchs of the Romanian Synod under Metropolitan Vlasie with the participation of Archbishop Kallinikos and the hierarchs who accompanied him during which they discussed ecclesiastical issues.
After the meeting, the hierarchs from Greece departed with all the Romanian Bishops for the city of Suceava where they visited the Convent of St. Demetrios in order to meet Bishop Demosthenes. After discussions among the Bishops which took many hours, His Beatitude and his synodia traveled to the Holy Protection Convent in Neamţ accompanied by two Romanian hierarchs.
The next day, Wednesday, His Beatitude and the hierarchs with him from Greece, accompanied by one of the Romanian hierarchs, made their last stop the Monastery of the Dormition of the Theotokos in Bucharest.
On Thursday morning at 11:30 a.m. they arrived back in Greece.
The entire trip was particularly fruitful. The kindness, hospitality, and Christian love of all of the Romanian hierarchs, priests, deacons, monks and nuns conveyed a truly Christian spirit. Wherever the hierarchs of our Church stopped, they were received with warm hospitality.
It is very moving and important to consider that our Orthodox brethren in Romania, by the Grace of God and through their own efforts, within about twenty-three years, beginning with nothing, have managed to lift their Church up very high.
It is an unthinkable accomplishment for so many monasteries and churches to be built in such a short period of time. This is really a miracle.
It is also worthy of note that the Archbishop and his synodia reverenced the relics of St. Paraskevi in Iaşi, as well as the phelonion of St. John Chrysostomos, which is preserved in the ecclesiastical museum in the city of Roman, Romania.
Below, please find select photos from Archbishop Kallinikos's visit to Romania. For more photos, click here.
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