On Sunday, March 17, 2019, the Sunday of Orthodoxy and First Sunday of Great Lent, His All-Holiness solemnly concelebrated the Divine Liturgy together with Metropolitans Elder Dimitrios of the Princes’ Islands, Augustinos of Germany, Germanos of Tranoupolis, Sotirios of Toronto, Makarios of Aneon, Eugenios of Rethymno and Avlopotamos, Amphilochios of Ganou and Chora, Damaskinos of Kydonia and Apokoronos, Nathanael of Kos and Nisyros, Constantine of Singapore, and Chrysostomos of Symi. During the Liturgy, the Patriarch ordained Mr. Dimitrios Nikiforos to the Diaconate, giving him the name Aetius.
His Eminence Metropolitan Theodoretos of Laodicea delivered the panegyric for Sunday of Orthodoxy.
Among those in attendance for the day’s celebrations were Metropolitans Elder Constantine of Nicea, Chrysostomos of Myra, Theoleptos of Ikonion, and Elpidophoros of Bursa; Archbishops Nektarios of Anthidon, and Job of Telmessos; Bishop Makarios of Christoupolis; Their Excellencies Markos Bolaris, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Hellenic Republic, and Petros Mavroidis, Ambassador of the Hellenic Republic to the Republic of Turkey; the Honorable Georgia Soultanopoulou, Consul General of the Hellenic Republic in Istanbul, and Oleksandr Gaman, Consul General of Ukraine in Istanbul; archons of the Ecumenical Throne; teachers and students from local schools of the City’s community; and numerous pilgrims from abroad.
Following the service, His All-Holiness, together with the hierarchs who concelebrated the Divine Liturgy, offered a Trisagion for the repose of the souls of all those who struggled and gave their lives for the Orthodox faith throughout the ages. Afterwards, the Patriarch led the customary procession of holy icons through the courtyard of the Phanar, and blessed the multitude of pious and devout faithful from the balcony of the Patriarchal House.