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On Epiphany, Samaras called for God's help to save Greece

06 January 2013 / 18:01:00  GRReporter
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On Epiphany, at the biggest port of Greece, Piraeus, Archbishop of Athens and All Greece Ieronymos, in the presence of Prime Minister Antonis Samaras, performed a water ritual and threw the Holy Cross into the waters between two ships of the Navy. Divers of the port police took it out. After the ceremony, the Prime Minister said: "From here, from Piraeus, the main port of the Mediterranean, I want to send an optimistic message that we will succeed." He added that the progress of the Greek nation had always been due to its power, to the enterprise of the Greeks, unity and optimism, and these foundations would help now, too. The ceremony was attended by Minister of Shipping Kostas Mousouroulis, Minister of Education Konstantinos Arvanitopoulos, Minister of Labour Yiannis Vroutsis and Mayor of Piraeus Vassilis Mihaloliakos, deputies and representatives of various institutions of the city. In the morning before the ceremony, there was a liturgy at the Holy Trinity Orthodox Church in Piraeus, performed by Archbishop Ieronymos and Metropolitan of Piraeus Seraphim. Because of the ceremonies, the traffic police imposed restrictions on movement throughout the city and there was also increased police presence.

In Athens, the water ritual was performed at the swimming pool of the National Sports Union by Bishop of Neohori Pavlos. It was attended by Tourism Minister Olga Kefaloginani as representative of the government, MPs Prokopis Pavlopoulos, Andreas Psaris, Panagiotis Kouroumblis and Marinos Ouzounidis, as well as Mayor of Athens George Kaminis. The Cross was thrown into the pool by Archimandrite of the Agia Fotini Church Maximos. The only one who dared to dip into the icy waters was George Nerandzis from Himara.

After the ceremony, the Mayor of Athens said that the crisis is not only economic but also a crisis of the political system, and Olga Kefalogianni stressed that it is essential to fight corruption, in order for everything and everyone to be revealed, and that politicians should not speak with wishes, but with actions.

In Thessaloniki, the great Christian holiday of Epiphany was celebrated with a liturgy in the Agios Grigorios Palamas Church, performed by Bishop Antimos. The water ritual took place at the old coast. The ceremony was attended by Minister of Macedonia and Thrace Theodoros Karaoglou, the new Governor of Central Macedonia Apostolos Dzidzikostas, Thessaloniki Mayor Yiannis Boutaris, MPs from the region, representatives of local and military authorities. More than 20 swimmers jumped into the icy waters of the Thermaikos Gulf in order to take the Cross out. For the second time, police officer George Ipsilantis managed to do this.

In addition, the waters of the Municipal Pool of Thessaloniki in the neighbourhood of Toumba were also consecrated. The ceremony was performed by priests of the churches "Agia Marina" and "Agia Barbara" to the sounds of the Orchestra of Thessaloniki.

Tags: Epiphany water ritual Antonis Samaras Archbishop Ieronymos Metropolitan Pavlos Olga Kefalogianni George Kaminis
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