Celebrating the Fourth Sunday of Great Lent in Barrie
On Sunday, March 18, 2018, His Eminence Metropolitan Sotirios, assisted by Parish Priest Fr. Theodoros Alamanos, celebrated the Divine Liturgy for the Fourth Sunday of Great Lent (Sunday of St. John Climacus) at the Holy Cross – St. Nektarios Greek Orthodox Community in Barrie, Ontario. The small, yet vibrant and growing parish community was filled to capacity. His Eminence delivered a moving homily filled with spiritual wisdom, connecting the Bible reading, the incalculable value of the soul, together with the feast of St. Alexios Man of God, who the Church commemorated the day before. Following the Divine Liturgy, the Metropolitan tonsured two individuals: one an ecclesiarch, the other a reader. They are Worthy! After the distribution of the Antidoron, His Eminence, Fr. Theodoros, the community and philoptochos presidents, joined all parishioners in the church hall for fellowship and a Lenten meal. Congratulations to all!
Forgiveness Sunday and Vespers for Saint Philothei
On Forgiveness (Cheese-Fare) Sunday, His Eminence celebrated the Divine Liturgy at the Church of St. Demetrios in Toronto. In the evening, the Metropolitan visited the Greek Orthodox Community of St. Nicholas, where he presided over the Vespers of Forgiveness holy service. Saint Philothei the Righteous Martyr of Athens, who is the Patron Saint of the Philoptochos in Canada, was also celebrated with hymns, as her Feast Day (February 19th) coincided with Clean Monday this year. Many pious faithful, including representatives from both national and local Philoptochos boards, attended the evening service at St. Nicholas. Following His Eminence’s spiritually moving homily, preparing the faithful for the Lenten period, all parishioners approached the Metropolitan and Reverend Clergy, asking for forgiveness from them, and from one another, as is the traditional liturgical practice in the Orthodox Church during the Vespers of Forgiveness.