Nativity Message from Our Synod of Bishops 2021


Hellenic Republic
Church of the Genuine Orthodox Christians of Greece
The Holy Synod

To be read in Church on the
Feast of the Nativity

Protocol No. 3167


“To adore Thee, the Sun of Righteousness,
and to know Thee, the Orient from on high.
O Lord, glory to Thee.”
(Apolytikion of the Feast)


Beloved Fathers and Brethren; Beloved Children in the Lord Who is Born:

The Great Feast of the Nativity of Christ has again arrived, in order to impart to us its
celestial joy and other-worldly melodies, to instill in us its sweetness, to ennoble us, to
soften our souls, and to exalt us. We are in direct need of its Divine inspiration, for we
are passing, each one of us individually, through a period of great tribulation and crisis,
as is all of mankind. Our aim in reminding ourselves of some essential truths of our Holy
Faith is, by Divine Grace, to strengthen us in God.

In the old Israel, evil shepherds, both political and religious, are frequently and
severely castigated by the Holy Prophets and the Righteous on the grounds that the sheep,
the people, belong to God, whereas the shepherds thought that the sheep belonged to
them. And thus instead of caring for them in a self-sacrificial way, they scattered them
and drove them away by the violence and oppression that they applied to them. This is a
perennial problem, which is encountered also in the era of Grace. Back then, before
Christ, the solution to the problem was to await the advent of the Good Shepherd, our
Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, Who would accomplish the work of gathering together and
restoring His scattered and beleaguered sheep. As Chief Shepherd, full of affection,
peace, and love, and at the same time glorious and humble, He would establish His
Church on earth as a Sheepfold and Ark of Salvation.

The Prophet Isaiah sees Him as “a rod out of the root of Jesse, and [as] a blossom
[that] shall come up from his root” (Isaiah 11:1), while the Prophet Jeremiah majestically
declares: “Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, when I will raise up to David a
righteous shoot, and a king shall reign and understand, and shall execute judgment and
righteousness on the earth” (Jeremiah 23:5). The coming Lord Jesus Christ is manifested
as the rising sun, the true “Sun of Righteousness” (Malachi 4:2), and is designated King
of the eternal Kingdom. He acts with understanding and wisdom, contrary to secular
leaders who lack understanding. He Who “went forth conquering, and to conquer”
(Revelation 6:2) judges with right judgment and exercises true righteousness upon the
earth. In complete contrast to unjust and oppressive rulers, Christ brings saving justice,
security, and peace, since He liberates those under the dominion of the tyrannical Devil,
our sworn and real enemy. Hence, the new People of the Lord can cry out with Divine
gladness: “If God be for us, who can be against us?” (Romans 8:31). The source o
righteousness, truth, health of soul and body, and freedom is found only in God, in the
God-Man Jesus Christ, our Savior, Messiah, and Redeemer, the Hope “of all the ends of
the earth, and of them that are afar off upon the sea” (Psalm 64:5 [LXX]).

* * *

Beloved Fathers and Brethren:

We are celebrating a unique and astounding event: the humble descent from the
Heavens to us, the lowly ones, of the Son and Word of God the Father, in the Holy Spirit,
Who created all things, bringing them from non-existence into being. He Who is glorified
and exceedingly hymned consents to become an Infant and is born of a humble yet All-
Holy and Ever-Virgin Mother. He accepts the Passion and the Cross in order to snatch us
from the unrighteous clutches of the all-destroying Devil, giving us power and strength
against him, so that we might mock and trample on him.

Since He loved us so much, He is and remains “every day and hour,” as Saint
Theodore the Stoudite affirms, our Helper, Supporter, and Refuge, unless we ourselves
repel Him because we choose to activate our passions (see his Great Catechesis 85).
None of the painful, unjust, oppressive, or onerous things that happen in this life can
weigh us down as long as we remain unbreakably united, by way of faith and virtue, with
the Young Child, the Pre-Eternal God.

Our Lord is not influenced by external appearance, position, or rank; He sees into the
depths of hearts and always pronounces just judgment. It is by Divine righteousness that
He will judge all people at His Second Coming, in accordance with their deeds and their

Here on earth, amid the maelstrom of unprecedented conditions and tribulations in
our days, even we faithful Christians are more and more losing an awareness of His
infinite Divine bounties, and we seem at times to be at sea like those who have no hope.

However, let us never forget the Light of the Kingdom of Christ the Savior, when He will
bestow—as He is assuredly doing even now—upon His chosen servants, those who abide
unto the end in His forbearance, His inconceivable gifts that surpass understanding and
hearing. We give Him what is least, and He, the Munificent One, gives us what is

If our heart is His dwelling-place, His manger, then His Divine prudence and wisdom
will guide our steps unerringly and will enrich us internally with joy, health, truth, and
freedom, regardless of external conditions and circumstances. For we are and will remain
with the sole and unique Victor, Redeemer, and Liberator: with our Savior Jesus Christ,
Who grants remission of sins and life eternal to all those who place all their hope in Him.
May we become worthy worshippers of His Divine Majesty, and may we glorify Him
eternally together with His Holy Angels in the all-harmonious doxology of Heaven, in
His eternal Kingdom!

Christ is Born!

Holy Nativity 2021



The Archbishop

† Kallinikos of Athens

The Members

† Ioustinos of Euripos and Euboia

† Gerontios of Piræus and Salamis

† Chrysostomos of Attica and Boiotia

† Gregorios of Thessalonike

† Photios of Demetrias

† Moses of Toronto

† Demetrius of America

† Ambrosios of Philippi and Maroneia

† Kyprianos of Oropos and Phyle

† Ambrose of Methone

† Klemes of Gardikion

† Auxentios of Etna and Portland

† Theodosios of Bresthena

† Christodoulos of Theoupolis

† Maximus of Pelagonia

[signed and sealed as a BONA FIDE COPY]

The First Secretary

† Photios of Demetrias

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