Message from Archbishop Demetrios
July 13, 2008
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
Archbishop Michael was an exceptional and highly esteemed hierarch and brilliant champion of Orthodoxy who, in a spirit of timeliness in the face of changes and challenges in the world during the time of his tenure, guided the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of North and South America to more systemically develop Her innate missionary vocation and to project in an increasingly public role the Church’s proclamation of and witness to the Gospel message.
Among his many achievements, Archbishop Michael of truly blessed memory, continued the efforts that were begun by Archbishop Athenagoras to secure the recognition of Greek Orthodoxy as a major faith of this nation by the American government. With a caring approach guided by patience and foresight, courage and humility, the Archbishop welcomed and encouraged the active participation and leadership of youth in the life of the Church through the establishment of the GOYA movement and expanded the ministries of the Church to more adequately serve the disenfranchized and marginalized populations of American and Greek society.
As we enagage in the meaningful deliberations of the 39th Biennial Congress and National Philoptochos Convention and pause with reverence to honor the memory of Archbishop Michael upon the fifty years of his passing, let us thank the Almighty God for the many fruits of his archpastoral ministry and the enduring impact this beloved hierarch has had on the Greek Orthodox Church in America.
With paternal love in Christ,
Archbishop Demetrios of America