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New Year 2012 PDF Print E-mail

 New Year Message for 2012 from His Eminence Archbishop Gregorios of Thyateira and Great Britain to the Flock of the biblical Eparchy of Thyateira of the Ecumenical Throne of Constantinople in Great Britain and Ireland.

 

 

Dearly Beloved in the Lord,

 

“And so, thanking you in all things and for all things, we cry:

‘Bless the beginning of the year by Your goodness,

and grant that, without condemnation, we may cry to you: glory to you'.” 

(Hymn of the Beginning of the Ecclesiastical Year)

 

Again we have been counted worthy to enter a new year, the year 2012, and so we dutifully offer praise, thanks and worship to our Lord Jesus Christ, Whose presence on earth as an infant, wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger, we celebrated a week ago. Another year has been added to our lives, and today we are at the beginning of another new year, one which is shrouded in uncertainty for all peoples of the world. The great economic crisis which struck a couple of years ago is not about to be resolved, to bring peace to the peoples and the masses which have suffered from it. And so all the leaders and intellectuals of the world, economists and those who hold in their hands the fate of humanity, are struggling and striving to find a way out of the dead end we are in.

 

We Christians should not panic or be disgruntled or lead astray by the pessimism of those who forget that Christ is the Alpha and the Omega. “I am the Alpha and the Omega, says the Lord God, the one who is and was and is to come, the Almighty.” (Rev 1:8) Christ provides for man and beast. A poet of the Church advises us to pray with faith and trust, and to keep saying, “Your Kingdom, O Christ, is the Kingdom of all the ages” (Hymn of the Beginning of the Ecclesiastical Year).

 

It is true that all of us have problems in life, especially the poor, the elderly, the unemployed, the imprisoned, the missing, the hungry, the sick, those with special needs, orphans, widows, those at war and those who suffer due to drought, pestilence, famine, calamities and revolutions, injustice, mismanagement, slavery, and the greed of the powerful.

 

And yet, brethren and fathers, the message of Christmas and of the New Year is one of joy and the renewal of our blessed hope in the Trinity, Who created all things in wisdom and looks upon is in His mercy and love for man, which has never ceased to be manifest throughout the history of the human race. “He has not left himself without testimony: He has shown kindness by giving you rain from heaven and crops in their seasons; he provides you with plenty of food and fills your hearts with joy”. (Acts 14:17) Particularly in times of great crisis and confusion, such as ours, God intervenes and provides solutions to rekindle the hopes of humanity. Therefore many profess openly, without fear, the inadequacy of human wisdom and of science to give the appropriate answers to the sharp difficulties which vex the masses.

 

Thus we must repent and renew our faith in God, that we may confess with our hearts in our daily lives. St Paul says: “If we have food and clothing, we will be content with that. Those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. (1 Tim. 6:8)

 

Let us not return to the traps of easy money and unjust wealth, in fleeting things and demonic greed. In our lives and families, let us hold fast to the Church, to Society and our relations with our fellow human beings. Let us thank God for our health and let us discover within us the joy of contentment, frugality, simplicity, restraint; of brotherhood and giving to others, particularly those in need of practical love and compassion. Let us learn to give a little of our time to others and to share our goods with those who suffer, with the poor and the weak.

 

The holy Archdiocese trusts its clergy and lay leaders, who daily bare the burden of responsibility for the smooth operation of the churches, schools and other organizations and associations. As we enter the New Year, together with my heartfelt prayers, accept also my thanks for your efforts and concerns for those things we share, things which all of us should cherish as the apple of our eye, “as we would our very eyes”, putting aside our petty ambitions and egocentricity. With humility and holy discernment, let us work together for the glory of God, for the stability of the Churches and for the peace of God among our people. Let us work for progress and the future of our children, who will “be devoted to one another in love, and honour one another above themselves”. (Rom. 12:10) Do not forget this fundamental truth, that throughout the world, we are but “sojourners and wanderers”, and faithfully we must look to the Kingdom of God that is to come, as the Church teaches through St Paul: “Here have we no continuing city, but we seek one that is to come” (Heb. 13:14)

 

With these holy teachings in mind, let us focus our attention and our very lives on Jesus Christ our Lord, Who is the Giver and Master of this New Year. He will provide the solution to our own difficulties as well as to all those terrible problems – economic, moral, existential, social, cultural and political – which humanity today is facing.

 

With this faith and sacred expectation I greet you all with much love and respect. May 2012 be a peaceful year, blessed by Jesus Christ our Saviour Who was born in Bethlehem of Judaea, and I remain with fervent prayers and love and esteem in the Lord.

 

London, January 2012 

 

Gregorios, Archbishop of

Thyateira & Great Britain 

 

 
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