Members of the Greek Orthodox Christian Society, 1956. In the front row, third from right and third from left are the founding members of the Society, Dr Michael Anthony and Mr Phidias Kyriakides.
Who can recount how many miracles have materialised in those six decades!The “right hand” of our Holy Archdiocese, according our current Archbishop Stylianos, who for the last 40 years, leads the Orthodox Church of Australia and supports the work of our Society.
- An Orthodox Missionary Centre
- An Orthodox Christian Bookstore
- Sunday Schools
- Christian Youth Groups
- Youth Camps
- Radio Programmes
- Missionary visits in Australia and overseas.
That a respectable amount of monastics and clergy in Australia and Greece came from the Orthodox Christian Society is an additional seal of the work of the Holy Spirit amongst us.
Together with these achievements we remember the difficult times in our Church when the Society was called to publicly stand against people acting “as savage wolves…. not sparing the flock” (Acts 20:29) in support of our Archdiocese.
Above and beyond these historical achievements in the life of the Orthodox Christian Society, the experiences which we as its members have lived through these past 60 years have surely been unique and exceptional.
These experiences are primarily acquired by those who struggle spiritually. A struggle inspired by the word of God, within each one’s strength, with the help of the Grace of God. “If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.” (Gal. 5:25)
Whilst living in a materialistic and despiritualised world, we learned early on that we are surrounded by much falsehood and disbelief. And that we need to testify to the Truth. “I am the way, the truth, and the life.” (John. 14:6). That as members of the Orthodox Christian Society, we need to live by this truth and exhibit it in all aspects of our missionary work.
This is how we learned that whoever battles for the Truth of Christ, will always be victorious.
Sixty years, one lifetime and the memories stream forth unceasingly, a true torrent of holy and unforgettable experiences.
As we walk through the years, all of us brothers in Christ, those who started 60 years ago, or only one year ago, it makes no difference. What counts is that we are bound by indissoluble bonds, which will never be extinguished. The more senior of us together with those who are younger. The members of all the groups, family men, parents, grandfathers and young men. One supporting the other. All being joyful in the happiness of the one, sharing in each other’s grief, finding comfort in brotherly support. This is because Christ is in our midst.
With Christ’s presence amongst us together with the blessings of our Church, let us wish that the next 60 years are as spiritually edifying for our members and for all our Orthodox brothers and sisters.