On Friday, the 15th/28th of August 2015, the Patriarchate observed the feast of the Dormition of Theotokos in Gethsemane, at the ancient Church of the Dormition of Theotokos, and at the Tomb of the Mother of God.
The panegyrical Liturgy was led by H.B. Theophilos, Patriarch of Jerusalem. Co-officiating were Metropolitans Isychios of Kapitolias, Timotheos of Vostroi, Joachim of Zambia, visiting from the Patriarchate of Alexandria; and their Eminences, Archbishops Aristarchos of Constantina, Methodios of Tabor, Demetrios of Lydda, and Nektarios of Anthedon; Hagiotaphite Hieromonks and clerics visiting from other Orthodox Churches, Hierodeacons, Archdeacon Evlogios, deacons Markos, Dionysius and Anastasios. Archimandrite Aristovoulos sang in Greek and Mr George Kamar sang in Arabic with the cantors of St James Cathedral, in the presence of the Greek Consul-General in Jerusalem, Mr Georgios Zacharoudiakis, and a crowd of local Arabic-speaking pilgrims from Israel and the Palestinian State, as well as pilgrims from Greece, Russia, Ukraine, Romania and Cyprus, placing lit candles along the stairs of the Church, as tokens of gratitude for the Virgin’s help or in request of her assistance. (More…)
On the morning of Thursday, the 14th/27th of August 2015, the rite of the “Engomia” [Lamentations] or of the “Epitaph” [Bier] of Theotokos was performed at her Tomb in Gethsemane.
This ceremony in honour of the Dormition of Theotokos is performed specifically by the Church of Jerusalem, with Prelates and Hierarchs walking from the Gate of the Patriarchate, headed by Patriarch Theophilos, at 7:30 am.
The procession walked through the Via Dolorosa, passed by the Monastery of St Charalambos, the Praetorium, Sts Joachim and Anna, and St Stephen, before reaching the Hegoumeneion in Gethsemane. There, priests wore their festive vestments in order to welcome the Patriarch. (More…)
On Tuesday, the 12th/25th of August 2015, a Divine Liturgy was held at the Chapel of the Annunciation of the Dormition of Theotokos, within the Galili Viri Monastery, where according to tradition, the Theotokos received the message of her Dormition by the Archangel Gabriel.
Theotokos was especially fond of this site and often prayed there after the Resurrection, until witnessing the Lord’s glorious Ascension. (More…)
Before dawn on the morning of Tuesday the 12th/25th of August 2015, a procession began of the icon of the Dormition of Theotokos, from the Dependency of Gethsemane opposite the Church of the Resurrection, to the Tomb of the Mother of God in Gethseman.
The procession was preceded by a Divine Liturgy at the Church of the Resurrection and the aforementioned Dependency.
Upon the tolling of the bells of the Church of the Resurrection, the procession began with the icon carried by the Hegoumen at Gethsemane, Archimandrite Nektarios. He was surrounded by Hagiotaphite Fathers, Primates and Hieromonks, and Archimandrite Bartholomew, Assistant Dragoman and Master of Ceremonies. A long row of monks, nuns and faithful walked ahead, as a crowd of Christians, Orthodox and others, both locals and pilgrims, elderly, young and children, stood on both sides of the street in order to venerate the icon. Amidst troparia to the Theotokos, (More…)
On the evening of Monday the 11th/24th of August 2015, a group of fifty pilgrims from Romania visited the Patriarchate. They were headed by Presbyter Cezar-Gabriel Dimitrescu.
The pilgrims were welcomed by Patriarch Theophilos of Jerusalem, who talked to them about the city of Jerusalem and the Holy Land, hallowed through the blood of the Crucified Lord. After receiving the Patriarch’s blessing, guests left to visit the rest of the Holy Land, thus be sanctified by the grace of the body and the blood of the incarnate, crucified and resurrected Jesus Christ. (More…)