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Ordination of George Tsiappourdhi to the Holy Diaconate

Ordination of George Tsiappourdhi to the Holy Diaconate

On Saturday, 20th April 2024, George Tsiappourdhi was ordained to the Holy Diaconate at the Church of the Holy Trinity and St. Luke in Birmingham. His Eminence Archbishop Nikitas of Thyateira and Great Britain presided over Matins and concelebrated the Divine Liturgy. Among those concelebrating was the V. Revd Archimandrite Christodoulos Kokliotis, the Revd Protopresbyter Christos Stephanou, Priest-in-Charge, the Revd Protopresbyter John Nankivell, the Revd Protopresbyter John Hookway, the Revd Hieromonk Bartholomew, the Revd Protopresbyter Theodoros Polyviou, Revd Oeconomos Aimilianos Epaminonda, Revd Oeconomos Nikolaos Karafylides, the Revd Presbyter Andreas Minic and the Revd Presbyter Georgios Athanasopoulos. The Rev. Archdeacon Dr George Tsourous and the Deacon Gregory Craveiro also served. Revd Presbyter Dr Nikita Banev was also prayerfully present in the altar.

On this significant day of his ordination to the first order of the priesthood, George expressed deep humility and gratitude to God but also His Eminence Archbishop Nikitas and everyone present, acknowledging his unworthiness for the “double blessing” of ordination, as he would be ordained a priest on the following day. His acceptance of this calling, inspired by the teachings of the Church, was marked by his commitment to serve with humility and love, acknowledging the critical need for more priests within the archdiocese.

In his heartfelt speech, George expressed his gratitude to a diverse group of individuals who have influenced his journey to ordination, including family, clergy, monastics, teachers, and friends. He reflected on significant personal changes that have enriched both his family life and spiritual development. This transformative journey was notably supported by the consistent patience and love of his family, underpinned by the wise guidance of his spiritual father, Father John Nankivell, who has been instrumental in helping him navigate his faith and relationships. Special acknowledgment was given to his wife, Hilda Georgia, whom he commended as a pillar of strength and support, and for filling the past year with profound love. As Fr George embraces his new ecclesiastical duties, he sought the prayers and ongoing support of the church community, committed to applying the lessons he has learned throughout his life.

In his address, Archbishop Nikitas offered paternal counsel to Fr George, urging him to face any potential difficulties with courage and to embody simplicity and humility in his priestly ministry to the people of God. The Archbishop also emphasised the immense blessing this ordination is for Fr George and his family, highlighting the remarkable grace of receiving both degrees of the priesthood within just two days. He noted that this swift progression is particularly auspicious as it allows Fr George the blessing of celebrating the Joyful Feast of Pascha in less than two weeks as a fully ordained priest.

At the conclusion of the Liturgy, His Eminence Archbishop Nikitas bestowed the Office of Confessor to the Revd Oeconomos Nicholas Karafyllides, recognising his dedicated pastoral work and authorising him to offer spiritual guidance as a confessor.

The day’s events culminated in a heartwarming reception organised by the Philanthropic Committee of Apostolos Louka & Estia, marking a memorable occasion for the Greek Orthodox Community in Birmingham.

Over 220 Youth & Young Adults Attend the 1st Annual COTY Lenten Retreat

On Saturday, 13th April 2024, at the Cathedral of the Nativity of the Mother of God (Kykkos) over 200 Youth and Young Adults participated in the 1st Annual Christian Orthodox Thyateira Youth Lenten Retreat particularly focused on The Ladder of Divine Ascent. The retreat was entirely subsidized by COTY and was free of charge to the participants.  All in attendance received a welcoming packet containing gifts and souvenirs from the day.

The Retreat began with the celebration of the Divine Liturgy in English celebrated by Rev. Fr. Stephen Morys Ireland (COTY Trustee). His Eminence Archbishop Nikitas presided during the celebration from the hierarchical throne. In his remarks, the Archbishop encouraged the young participants to attend the Sacrament Holy Confession. Dozens of youthful souls had the opportunity to confess to the V. Rev. Archimandrite Peter, Hegumen of the Sacred Patriarchal and Stavropegic Monastery of St. John the Baptist in Essex.

Following the Divine Liturgy, Lenten breakfast was served, and the presentations began.  The V. Rev. Archimandrite Nephon Tsimalis, Protosyncellus and COTY Trustee greeted and welcomed those in attendance on behalf of the COTY Trust Chairman, the Rev. Protopresbyter Christodoulos Christodoulou. His Eminence inaugurated the retreat with a reflection on the Ladder. Hegumen Peter offered his presentation on the Ladder titled “The True Freedom of the Heart in the teaching of St. John of the Ladder.” The final presentation on the Ladder was offered by Rev. Oikonomos Dr. Kristian Akselberg (COTY Trustee) titled, “Rungs of Opportunity: Virtue as Inversion of Our Passions”.

Two workshops: one on iconography and one on making a 33-knot prayer rope were offered.

The Retreat ended with coffee, Lenten treats, and refreshments offered by the Cathedral and fellowship ensued in the beautifully decorated atrium of the Cathedral.

The full program of the day is listed below.  For more pictures or information on the Lenten Retreat visit www.coty.org.uk or follow COTY on Instagram: @coty_org.

Doxology of Greek and Greek Cypriot Independence in Wood Green

On Sunday, 7th April 2024, His Eminence Archbishop Nikitas of Thyateira and Great Britain presided over Matins and celebrated the Divine Liturgy at the Cathedral of the Dormition of the Mother of God, Wood Green in North London. Among those concelebrating were the Revd Presbyters Petros Georgiou and Andreas Minic, with the Revd Archdeacon Dr George Tsourous also serving.

Following the Liturgy, His Eminence Nikitas presided over the Doxology (Te Deum) in commemoration of Greek Independence Day (March 25th) and in honor of those who sacrificed their lives for freedom in Cyprus (1st April) between 1955 and 1959. Also in attendance at the Divine Liturgy were the newly appointed High Commissioner of the Republic of Cyprus, His Excellency Kyriacos Kouros, who delivered his inaugural speech. Representatives from the Embassy of the Hellenic Republic, along with members of their respective diplomatic corps and military attachés, were also present. Notable attendees included Pambos Charalambous MP, President of the National Federation of Cypriots in the UK, and Trustee of the Archdiocese Christos Karaolis, as well as several Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate.

The Feast of the Veneration of the Holy Cross in Golders Green

On the Sunday of the Veneration of the Holy Cross, 7th April 2024, His Grace Bishop Iakovos of Claudiopolis celebrated the Divine Liturgy at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross and Archangel Michael in Golders Green, London. His Grace conveyed His Eminence Archbishop Nikitas’s paternal wishes and blessings, as we continue our lenten journey towards Pascha. Bishop Iakovos stressed the importance of repentance, of our participation in the daily lenten services of the Church and of the sacrament of confession for our spiritual growth, within the context of the lenten fast. His Grace also thanked the priest-in-charge, V.Rev. Archimandrite Vissarion Kokliotis, as well as the presidents of the ecclesiastical council and ladies auxiliary committee for their tireless efforts and recent ministries. Fr Vissarion Kokliotis concelebrated at the Hierarchical Liturgy and Deacon Gregory Florides served and preached the sermon in Greek and English.

Archbishop Nikitas in Leyton

Archbishop Nikitas in Leyton

On Sunday of St Gregory Palamas, 31st March 2024, His Eminence Archbishop Nikitas of Thyateira and Great Britain presided over Matins and celebrated the Divine Liturgy at the Church of St Eleftherios in Leyton. The service was co-celebrated by the V. Revd Archimandrite Philotheos Mavrakis, Priest-in-charge, and the Revd Presbyter Andreas Minic, with the Revd Archdeacon George Tsourous also serving.

During his visit, the Archbishop delivered a sermon stressing the point that the Gospel passage answers the question – ‘Who is Jesus’. He elucidated that the reading provides a compelling answer, affirming Jesus as capable of healing the entire person, both body and soul. He is perfect God and perfect man.

Following the conclusion of the Divine Liturgy, the community came together in the Community Hall for a meal prepared by the parishioners themselves, further enriching the day’s celebrations with a spirit of communal joy and fellowship.

Photo credit: Alexios Gennaris

Lenten Retreat

Please accept this invitation from His Eminence Archbishop Nikitas and Join us on our lenten retreat this saturday at St Mary’s Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Camberwell.
Tickets: www.ticketsource.co.uk/coty/t-gagxzoy