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Deputy Foreign Minister I. Amanatidis' statement upon receiving the Holy Light at the Jerusalem Patriarchate (15 April 2017)
"Your Beatitude, Your Eminences,
It is a great honour to receive the Holy Light – a global symbol of Orthodoxy – from the hands of Patriarch Theophilos III of Jerusalem, having attended the Holy Light ceremony at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, as the representative of the Greek government with the Greek delegation, and having experienced these special moments together with many other faithful.
The Ancient Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem and the Holy Brotherhood of the Holy Sepulchre, under the guidance of His Beatitude Theophilos III, continue their age-old struggle, with sacrifice, perseverance and composure, particularly in the critical time the Middle East is going through today.
The Greek State has always supported the Patriarchate and the Holy Brotherhood of the Holy Sepulchre in the effort to ensure that their sacred privileges and spiritual role remain unscathed by time and geopolitical expediency. The assistance in restoring the Edicule of the Tomb, as well as the further assistance with all of the necessary actions for preserving the sacred pilgrimage sites, is the least we can do in this effort to support the Patriarchate.
I am sure that – in these days when peoples are being tested by extremism and intolerance manifested on religious pretexts – we feel the need of the redemption and hope that the Passion and Resurrection of Christ offer the world.
It is my hope, Your Beatitude, that the Holy Light and the Resurrection pass on the message of life, joy, peace and hope to the whole world.
Christ is Risen, and Many Happy Returns!"