On Sunday, 18th February 2024, His Eminence Archbishop Nikitas of Thyateira and Great Britain presided during Matins and celebrated the Divine Liturgy at the Church of the Holy Trinity and Annunciation in Oxford. Amongst those concelebrating were the Revd Protopresbyter Ian Graham, Priest-in-charge, and the Revd Presbyter Seraphim Vanttinen-Newton. The Revd Archdeacon Dr. George Tsourous also served.

In his heartfelt sermon, the Archbishop drew from Apostle Paul’ epistle to the church in Corinth to remind us that we are indeed the living temples of God. He emphasised, “As the very dwelling of God, it’s essential for us to separate ourselves from the ways of the world. This is not a mere suggestion but a divine invitation to purity and holiness.” This separation, he explained, is not about isolation but about choosing a path that aligns with our sacred identity. “By distancing ourselves from anything that defiles our spirit or body, we open our hearts to a deeper relationship with God,” he continued.

In his address to the congregation, the Archbishop further emphasised the significance of unity in Christ. He highlighted how the diverse and multicultural congregation in Oxford transcends the variety of ethnic and cultural backgrounds and unites as one family. This unity, he noted, is a testament to the strength of their collective commitment to Christ and to each other, embodying the very essence of the Church as the body of Christ in the world.

Following the Divine Liturgy, the day’s celebrations culminated in a festal bring-and-share lunch held in the Community Hall. This gathering provided a wonderful opportunity for fellowship and joy, where the Archbishop had the chance to speak with the parishioners of Oxford, engaging in conversation and answering questions at length.

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