Dear Brother Archons and Friends and Family Members of the Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate:
The Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate witnessed the atrocities committed in the Holy Land on October 7, 2023 with unmitigated shock and horror. We offer our prayers, our sympathy, and our solidarity to the survivors, the bereaved, and those who are still in peril.
The world has watched in dismay as the events of that fateful day have become fully known. Words cannot describe our emotions as we have learned about the full extent of the human suffering on that day, including over eight hundred people killed, over two thousand wounded, and over one hundred kidnapped, all in an atmosphere of unspeakable barbarism in which even babies were savagely murdered.
This atrocity is reminiscent of the Biblical account of King Herod. Wanting to kill the Christ Child, but unable to locate Him, Herod “sent and killed all the male children in Bethlehem and in all that region who were two years old or under” (Matthew 2:16).
In the same way, the forces of evil also act today against the most innocent and defenseless. Yet just as in the time of Herod, they will not prevail. While our hearts are broken witnessing Hamas’s merciless attack on the Innocents, we know that as we strive for peace and vow to remain peacemakers rather than warmongers, God will bless our efforts. So let us not be downhearted, but strive all the more, in the face of this evil, to shine forth the light of our loving God in a broken world.
We pray for justice, and we extend our love and solidarity to the Innocent People of Israel. Shalom!
Yours in the service of the Ecumenical Patriarchate,
Anthony J. Limberakis, MD
Archon Megas Aktouarios