After celebrating the Divine Liturgy at the Skete of St. Anne this morning, His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros and pilgrims resumed their journey to Mount Athos.
On the way, they visited the Esphigmenou Monastery, as well as the Holy Skete of St. Nicholas (η σκήτη του Αγίου Νικολαου Μπουραζέρη) of the Monastery of Iveron, where they were received by the Abbot and monks of the community.
His Eminence honoured the Abbot with the golden cross of Hagia Sophia and was gifted an icon of Saint Peter by the Abbot, who not only produced the icon himself but also then introduced the pilgrimage group to the iconographers at work at the monastery.
Later in the day, the group arrived at the Protaton, the major church, of Mount Athos. His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros honoured the Protos, the “first monk” of the monastic communities of Mount Athos, with a silver icon of the Hospitality of Abraham, and the Protos gifted His Eminence an icon of the Panagia in turn.
The group will travel to the Vatopedi Monastery, where it will rest for the night before continuing onward tomorrow.
This pilgrimage series, led by Archbishop Elpidophoros, is organized by the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America for hierarchs, clergy, and laity in celebration of the Archdiocese’s Centennial
Archbishop Elpidophoros on pilgrimage to celebrate archdiocesan centennial
Today Elpidophoros reverenced the miraculous icon “Axion Estin” at the Holy Temple of Protatos and then visited the Proto, or First, the monastery of Mount Athos.
In the afternoon the Archbishop visited the Holy Great Monastery of Vatopedi, where he was warmly welcomed. The Abbot of the Monastery, Elder Ephraim, addressed him in special remarks for the occasion.
Tomorrow Elpidophoros will travel to the Holy Monastery of Simonos Petras and Xenophon, while on Wednesday in Komotini, Democritus University will award him the title of honorary doctor.
On Friday, the Archbishop of the Americas will end up in Istanbul. He and his companions will have an audience with Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, from whom they will ask for a blessing for the beginning of Holy and Great Lent.