March 25, 2020

A Special Celebration of March 25th for the Greek People

By Metropolitan Chrysostomos of Patras

Behold, the great day and feast of March 25th is at the door. The celebration due to the prevailing special circumstances will not be as brilliant as it used to be. There will be no "official" doxologies, no parades, no celebratory speeches.

This year's celebration has the particularity that it will take place internally, heartily, prayerfully in the home and in the Church through the Divine Liturgy (where it is performed), with the participation of the few, as provided by the instructions of the competent authorities. In our city, we will be liturgizing in the Holy Metropolitan Cathedral of Evangelistria, which even celebrates, with the Divine Liturgy transmitted by our Ecclesiastical TV Station and our Radio Station.

This special celebration should bring us closer to those who, during the horrible Turkish slavery, suffered, were tortured, murdered, and generally fought heroically for the sake of our Orthodox faith and our sweet homeland.

We believe that no Greek will let forgetfulness cover over the events, the heroic actions, the achievements of the heroes and martyrs, of clergy and laity, men and women, small and great, on behalf of faith, freedom, human honor and dignity.

In our souls must be reawakened the memories we received from our fathers, and the torch of the sacred inheritance, which began at the hands of the martyred Emperor Constantine Palaiologos, from the legends of the Queen City, and moving through the numerous martyrs and myriads of fighters, it reached the rope of Patriarch Gregory V, the hands of the giant-souled Theodoros Kolokotronis, of Palaion Patron Germanon, Papaflessa and the other priests of our faith and our homeland who struggled and were voluntary slaughtered.

We have an unpaid debt to honor the heroes, giving them our gratitude, respect, prayer for the rest of their souls, the promise that we will keep what they have given us, that we will not discount this in defense of our sanctuaries and saints, and that we will convey to the oppressed the love of these inexhaustible values ​​of faith, that is, in the true God, in the love of the fatherland, and in our devotion to the Orthodox Holy Mother Church, which manifested itself throughout bitter slavery and the sacred struggle for freedom, which continuously moves for her children.

The celebration of March 25th is once again an opportunity to honor our sacred symbols and to proudly raise from the balconies and windows of our homes and our workplaces, our Flag, which with its blue-white appearance and its cross carries, shakes, touches and inspires in its bowels a meaningful life and acts of heroism that mark, if necessary, with the sacrifice of blood.

My beloved, let us, from our houses, mentally transport ourselves to the sanctified and blood-soaked places and the sanctuaries of the brave who sacrificed, and let us kneel before those who struggled on behalf of the faith and the homeland, crowning them from our hearts, conveying a sleight amount of honor and gratitude, for what they did on our behalf.

Let us kneel in front of the icon of our Panagia, and let us offer incense and a holy candle and light it on behalf of their all-sacred memory.

This year's celebration is special, deeper, more spiritual. It allows us to converse more with our heroic ancestors, even just before we celebrate the 200 years since the birth of our nation in 1821. This celebration, unique for our homeland, helps us redefine our inner selves in order to withstand any adversities and difficulties now and in the future, to move forward with morality, dignity, honor and pride for the many virtues of our nation and the infinite benefactions of God.

Source: Translated by John Sanidopoulos.