Αrchdiocese of Australia: 60 years of acclaimed ministry and sacrificial contribution to Orthodoxy

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It was August 13, 1961. It was a blessed and historic day because a gifted young man entered the holy clergy of the Orthodox Church, who would be notable for his sacrificial ministry in the coming decades.

21-year-old Dimitrios Archontonis received the first degree of priesthood in the Metropolitan Church of the Dormition of the Virgin, in his birthplace, Imbros.

The ordination to deacon was performed by his spiritual father, the then Metropolitan of Imbros and Tenedos and later Elder Metropolitan of Chalcedon, Meliton Chatzis.

During the ordination, the new deacon received the name Bartholomew in honor of the Imbrian hieromonk and teacher of the Nation, Bartholomew from Koutloumsiou Monastery (1772-1851).

Twelve years later, in 1973, this gifted clergyman, who had been ordained a presbyter in 1969 and then received the offikion of Archimandrite, was promoted to Metropolitan of Philadelphia.

After the passing of Elder Metropolitan Meliton of Chalcedon, he was unanimously elected in his succession in 1990, while a year later he took over the “helm” of the First Throne Church of Constantinople.

As Ecumenical Patriarch, with his diverse work and key initiatives, he has emerged as a world-renowned figure. At the same time, he serves with devotion and sacrificial faith the mission of the Great Church of Christ.

With this day marking the 60th anniversary of priesthood, our prayers are united with the prayer that God will give him strength, patience and prosperity for the sake of the Orthodox Church, its faithful and humankind.

May God grant Your All-Holiness many blessed and fruitful years!

Source: orthodoxtimes.com

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