Message from the Patriarch of Jerusalem

by Dr. Anthony G. Ziagos, Sr.,
Middlesex Media

Photograph by Robert DeVasto
Our recent pilgrimage to the Holy Land was a life changing experience. One of the events that made our visit extraordinary was an audience with the Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem. His Beatitude Theophilus III and his staff were gracious hosts. He was generous with his time and offered each one of us individually, his Patriarchal Blessing. I admired his wisdom and insight which was expressed in his remarks to our group of twenty two pilgrims. He told us, “Jerusalem is the history of Salvation, Sacred to Jews, Christians and Muslims as the guardians of the Holy Places by divine providence. To touch, by your hands, the places of Jesus Christ, your pilgrimage of vision will be conducive to helping us obtain union and contemplation of our Lord Jesus Christ. I wish you a happy stay”

After our audience and Blessing I was offered the opportunity and privilege to interview His Beatitude personally and I thanked him for his time and asked him if he had a message for the faithful in America. He smiled and said; “Have trust in God, because God the Father is the purpose and the meaning of our life and the earth belongs to him. We have been managers of his creation which means we have to abide by the Almighty God's will and commandments. The Commandments of God, his love and his freedom for he made us after his own image and likeness.” “God Bless the World and the United States of America.”

We walked together as we left the reception hall on the way to his next appointment. As we left the Patriarchate I contemplated his words and knew that the rest of my trip would be different.

When we read the bible or listen to the Divine Liturgy the people, the places and the events of history take on a new dimension. The history and remnants of the lives of Jesus and the Disciples are real. As stewards of our Christian faith sharing our experience with others will help to reinforce our faith.

Photograph by Anthony Ziagos, Sr.

(Posting date 11 February 2011. Reproduced with permission Middlesex Media.)

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Dr. Anthony G. Ziagos, Sr. is a photo journalist and publisher from Massachusetts. He is a Doctor of Naturopathy and is involved in International Diplomatic community. His work has been featured in dozens of publications around the world. He is a regular contributor to several publications and he can be reached at

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