THE ORTHODOX AUTOCEPHALOUS CHURCH OF ALBANIA – PRESS RELEASE – NOVEMBER 2014
The Consecration of the New Cathedral Church of Saint Demetrios in Berat
“Every Orthodox church is a place of peace and comfort; a place where people find not only God, but also themselves. At the same time it is a place of brotherhood, where we meet with respect for one another. Moreover, it is a place of spiritual renewal and sanctification. It is a place for praising God, where truth, love and beauty coexist. The new Cathedral Church of Berat, which is exalted in the center of the city, constitutes its main lung.”
Emphasizing the importance of the church building for the life of the believers, the Archbishop of Tirana, Durrës and All Albania Anastasios, consecrated on the feast day of Saint Demetrios, Sunday, October 26, 2014, the new Cathedral Church of Berat, which is dedicated to this saint of our Church. The Metropolitan of Berat Ignatius, the Bishop of Amantia Nathaneil and also many clerics attended the Service of Consecration.
From early in the morning hundreds of believers, among them many young pople from the ancient city, who follow the traditions of the Orthodox faith, but also from the whole area of Myzeqe, as well as other areas of the country, filled the courtyard of the Church. They participated with their prayer in the gracious act of consecration, in the procesion and litany of the holy relics, the consecration of the Holy Table, and in the Divine Liturgy. Also present at the Service were representatives of religious communities, local authorities, and local deputies etc.
The new Cathedral, masterfully built, with a total area 527 m2 and a height of 20 m, was founded in 1994, among many difficulties and at a time when the city of Berat was hit by a cholera epidemic. Construction bagan in 2002, nder the supervision and architectural design of the Technical Office of the Orthodox Autocephalous Church of Albania. The expenses for the completion of this work totaled 850,000 euros; funds that came as donations from various sources abroad, through the personal afforts of Archbishop Anastasios.
From June to October 2014, seven churches which adorn the land and convey the message of faith and hope have been consecrated in different areas of Albania: two in Tirana, one in Shkodra, Pogradec, Aliko, Këlcyrë and Berat.