Preserve Hilandar

Hilandar monks at the glory of the Royal Family of Serbia


On 13/12/2022, the Most Venerable Archimandrite Metodije attended, with part of the brotherhood of the Hilandar monastery, the solemn celebration of the baptismal glory of the Royal Family of Serbia – Saint Andrew the First-Called, in the Royal Palace in Belgrade.

The hosts of the festive celebration were Their Royal Highnesses Crown Prince Aleksandar and Princess Katarina. The Princess’s sister, Mrs. Betty Roumeliotis, was also present.

His Holiness Serbian Patriarch G. Porfirije served the Holy Liturgy in the Palace Chapel dedicated to the patron saint of the Royal Family, with the concelebration of the clergy of the Archdiocese of Belgrade-Karlovac. After the Liturgy, His Holiness performed the traditional act of cutting the celebratory cake in the Blue Salon of the Royal Palace with the bishops of the Serbian Orthodox Church.

The liturgy and lunch in the Palace were also attended by His Eminence the Metropolitan of Montenegro and the Littoral Mr. Joanikije, Their Eminences the Bishops of Vranje Mr. Pahomije, Mr. Jovan of Šumadija, Mr. Ignatije of Braničevo, Mr. Andrej of Austria-Switzerland, Mr. Isihije of Valja, Mr. Jerotej, Vicar Bishops of His Holiness: Mr. Stefan of Remesija, Mr. Sava of Marča, Mr. Aleksej of Hvostan, Mr. Ilarion of Novobrdo, Mr. Dositej of Liplje, as well as the Most Reverend Archimandrite Nektarije, the chief secretary of the Holy Synod of Bishops.

Also present were: Dr. Vladimir Roganović, director of the Office for Religions of the Government of Serbia, Mr. Isak Asiel, Rabbi of Serbia, Efendija Sead Nasufović, reis-ul-ulema of the Islamic Community of Serbia, Efendija Mustafa Jusufspahić, Mufti of Belgrade, HE Dr. Jaroslav Javornik, Slovak Evangelical Church, members of advisory bodies of the Crown and friends of the Royal Family.

H.R.H. In his speech, Crown Prince Aleksandar thanked His Holiness and all distinguished guests and pointed out: “We gathered today in front of the icon, the celebratory cake, and the candle, to celebrate our glory.” The Feast of the Epiphany has always been one of the most important and sacred traditions of the Serbian people. She has sustained us through the ages. The candle we light on the Day of our heavenly patron has always given us strength, even in the most difficult times. It was also lit at the time when our people were in slavery and in the trenches. Her light always showed us the way and gave us courage and comfort.

Saint Apostle Andrew the First-Called is the patron saint of my family. We send our prayers to him to bless our home, our nation, and all people in the world. We will overcome all temptations and we will not fail our ancestors and descendants if we are united as a people. I wish you to spend this blessed day and all future days in peace, well-being, good health, and well-being”.

His Holiness Serbian Patriarch G. Porfirije also addressed those present, who said that Saint Andrew was the first apostle who followed Christ, and the Royal House is the first house in our nation. Congratulating Crown Prince Aleksandar on the glory, he added that it is the glory of our entire nation because when the head of the family celebrates, all other members celebrate as well. And the head of the family for our people is the Royal House of Karađorđević. His Holiness added that our nation is blessed because it has its own dynasty, descended from the nation itself. Many other nations would love to have what we have, they must invent their own head, their own Royal Family, and our Royal Family is “bone of our bone, blood of our blood,” sprung from a root that is deeply embedded in our being. The Crown Prince and his ancestors came from the very core of our people and we are truly blessed from there, His Holiness concluded in his speech during the festive lunch.

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