The Greek Parade in Montreal. Shown are Prime Minister of Canada Justine Trudeau, Minister of Foreign Affairs Melanie Joly, the president of Greek Community of Greater Montreal Andreas Krilis, Ambassador of Greece in Canada Constantina Athanasiadou, and Archbishop Sotirios of Canada. (Photo provided by the Archdiocese of Canada)
TORONTO – For the last two years, almost all activities of the Archdiocese of Canada were suspended because of the coronavirus pandemic. This year however marks a return of many activities for the Church in Canada.
In many regions of Canada, the blue-and-white flag of Greece was raised on March 25th – in city halls, in provincial assemblies, as well as in the Parliament of Canada.
Divine Liturgies and Doxologies were celebrated everywhere to mark the March 25th anniversary. The parades in Toronto and Montreal were magnificent, as the photographs demonstrate.
The Montreal parade was led by the Prime Minister of Canada, the Rt. Hon. Justin Trudeau, Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Hon. Mélanie Joly, the President of the Greek Community of Greater Montreal, Andreas Krilis, Ambassador of Greece to Canada, Konstantina Athanasiadou, Archbishop Sotirios of Canada, Bishop Iakovos of Zenoupolis, and many other dignitaries.
The Toronto parade was led by the President of the Greek Community of Toronto, Paraskevi Skoutaki, the Consul General of Greece, Victor Maligoudis, Bishop Athenagoras of Patara, many elected officials including the Member of the Ontario Provincial Parliament Effie Triantafilopoulos, City Councilor Nikos Mantas and many other officials.
Despite the bitter cold, everyone marched with tremendous pride and enthusiasm.
The Ladies Philoptochos Societies of Canada organize their annual spiritual retreats on the Saturdays of Great Lent. In the last two years, there have been no such gatherings, but they were only able to start again this year. Philoptochos spiritual retreats have already taken place in Toronto and Montreal with strong attendance, and more are scheduled.
Among scriptural phrases discussed by Archbishop Sotirios of Canada are, “I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content” (Philippians 4:11), which is the theme of the ecclesiastical year.
An official release noted that, “Archbishop Sotirios and the entire family of Christians of the Archdiocese of Canada praise and thank the Most Merciful God who is slowly liberating us from the coronavirus pandemic. We all promise to live out our Christian lives more fully, and we wish everyone a blessed, spiritually uplifting, and joyful Feast of Pascha.”
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