The Jerusalem Patriarchate – May 2016
On the morning of Monday, the 26th of April/9th of May 2016, His Holiness Abune Mathias, Patriarch of the Ethiopian Church, visited the Patriarchate. The Ethiopian Patriarch and His entourage were warmly received by H.B. Theophilos, Patriarch of Jerusalem, and Hagiotaphite Fathers.
An interesting discussion took place in the framework of the meeting, on the harmonious relations between the Ethiopian Church and the Patriarchate of Jerusalem. In his address, the Patriarch of Ethiopia made reference to these relations.
In His reply speech, Patriarch Theophilos said: “Your visit to Jerusalem, where you had served as Archbishop, is a big honour for us. It is a blessing for both Churches, of Jerusalem and Ethiopia, and it urges us to remember our historical and political links. Your visit is a testament to Jerusalem, now challenged by political tension. We preserve the spirituality of Jerusalem, fight for its holiness as we fight for the restoration of the Aedicula of the Holy Sepulchre, and for the resolution of the problem of the Ethiopian Church near Abraham’s Monastery.
An exchange of gifts followed, as the Ethiopian Patriarch offered a diptych icon of Ethiopian ascetic saints, and Patriarch Theophilos offered a mother-of-pearl engolpion and cross, and the icon of Panaghia Jerusalemite in Gethsemane. The “Christ Has Risen” hymn was then sang in Greek and Ethiopian, after which the Ethiopian Patriarch continued his visit to the Holy Land.