Encyclicals

42 Total Articles

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I Message on the Day of the Protection of the Environment

Friday, September 01, 2006

The God of tender mercy and love for mankind created the cosmos to be a place of sublime beauty, serviceable and apt to the needs of every human being. Into such a world, God allowed the crown and monarch of His creation, the human person, to partake of everything in it that is needful for life. Learn More »

Patriarchal Proclamation on Holy Pascha 2006

Sunday, April 23, 2006

All of Nature, the choirs of angels, the multitudes of humankind: all are astonished and amazed. The entire creation stands in fear and trembling in the presence of the great and unspeakable Mystery of the Holy Passion and the glorious Resurrection of Christ the Savior, and asks: “How is it possible that Life, true Life, Life itself, the source of Life, can die? How can a grave become the dwelling place of Life, of our Lord Jesus Christ Who said of himself, “I am … the life ” (John 14:6)? The answers are revealed to us in the Resurrection. Learn More »

Patriarchal Proclamation upon the Feast of Nativity 2005

Sunday, December 25, 2005

The human soul feels deeply the need to be loved. The widespread sense that life has no meaning, which plagues in particular our young people, is to be blamed on the absence of love. Our fellow human beings are for the most part trapped within their individual pursuits and seek to fill the emptiness caused by the lack of love with the acquisition of material goods, carnal pleasures and fame. However, the soul is only satisfied with personal recognition and love, and not these other things. Learn More »

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I Message on the Day of the Protection of the Environment

Thursday, September 01, 2005

“The earth, having no tongue cries out sighing, why are you people polluting me with many evil things?” (Troparion - 9th ode - for the earthquake of October 26) In a very pictorial way, the holy hymnographer Joseph presents the earth as grieving and protesting voicelessly for the many evils with which we burden her. If this holy hymnographer thought back then that the pollution of earth by humankind would cause the wrath of God, today, humanity in its entirety should all the more realize our ultimate destructive behaviour against the creation of God. Learn More »

Patriarchal Proclamation upon the Feast of Nativity 2004

Saturday, December 25, 2004

It is with amazement and full of wonder that we are brought face to face, particularly during these days, with the incarnation of the Son and Word of God, Who was born of a Virgin and laid in a manger of animals, something inconceivable for both mankind and the angelic orders. And whilst the faithful celebrate festively this joyful event, namely that by divine condescension a Saviour was born to us this day, descending unto us from His great majesty, natural, social and spiritual earthquakes and conflicts shatter mankind, that distanced itself from Christ, bringing thus turmoil and trouble to the life of all those who love peace. Learn More »

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I Message on the Day of the Protection of the Environment

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Fifteen years ago, our venerable predecessor, the late Patriarch Demetrios issued the first official decree for the preservation of the natural environment, an encyclical letter to the pleroma of the Church, formally establishing September 1st as a day of prayer for the protection of the environment. That historical proclamation emphasized the significance of the eucharistic and the ascetic ethos of our tradition, which provide a corrective for a consumer lifestyle and an alternative to the prevailing philosophy of our age. Learn More »

Patriarchal Encyclical on Holy Pascha 2004

Sunday, April 04, 2004

As we greet you, dear beloved, with this Paschal exclamation, we reminisce about the philanthropic action of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Logos of God, through Whom everything was created, to offer life to mankind. We also think of the cruel pursuit of the devil, and of the people who have been misled by the devil, having become his instruments in trying to deprive humankind of the great and sacred gift of life. Learn More »

Patriarchal Proclamation upon the Feast of the Nativity 2003

Thursday, December 25, 2003

By God’s divine dispensation we celebrate once again the great and joyous feast of the birth of the Incarnate Logos of God. The most merciful God, who created man and endowed him with the gifts of self-consciousness and the capability to know and communicate with others, ultimately destining him to partake in the joy of love, did not abandon man when he rejected God’s love by choosing to grow apart from His Creator. Learn More »

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I Message for the Day of the Protection of the Environment

Monday, September 01, 2003

This day of prayer for the environment finds us disturbed by information recently received about two distressing events. The first is the severe destruction of the natural environment owing to rising temperatures, which has caused extensive forest fires in some parts of the world. The second refers to the outbreak of collective killings of citizens that were innocent and unconnected with their killers, executed by extremist elements whose aim is to harm the society to which these randomly selected victims belong. Learn More »

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I Message for the Day of the Protection of the Environment

Sunday, September 01, 2002

When the Mother Church declared September 1st each year as a day of prayer for the environment, no one could imagine at the time (as early as 1990) just how rapidly the natural conditions of the world would deteriorate as a result of harmful human interference or how horrific the consequent losses and damages on human lives would be. Recent floods in Europe, India and Russia, as well as those occurring during this year or previously in other parts of the earth, all bear witness to the disturbance of the climactic conditions caused by global warming. Such disasters have persuaded even the most incredulous persons that the problem is real, that the cost of repairing damages is comparable to the cost of preventing them, and that there is simply no margin left for remaining silent. Learn More »

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I Message for the Day of the Protection of the Environment

Saturday, September 01, 2001

The designation of September 1st, which marks the beginning of the new ecclesiastical year and of a new period in the physical cycle of social activities, as a day of prayer for the environment, by the Great Church of Christ, the Mother Church of Constantinople, reveals the great significance for humanity of the physical world which was created by God. Learn More »

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew's Message for the Day of the Protection of the Environment

Wednesday, September 01, 1999

When Paul the Apostle to the Nations advised the Thessalonians to "give thanks in all circumstances" (1 Thess. 5:18), he also counseled them to "always rejoice, and pray without ceasing" (1 Thess. 5:16-17), thus demonstrating that thanksgiving as prayer and everlasting joy go together and coexist inseparably. Learn More »

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I Message for the Day of the Protection of the Environment

Tuesday, September 01, 1998

The Holy Orthodox Church, accepting that the entire creation is very good, finds itself in a harmonious relationship with the natural world, which surrounds the crown of creation, the human being. Even though the human being, either as an isolated individual or as collective humanity, is only a minuscule speck in the face of the immense universe, it is a fact that the entire universe is endowed with meaning by the very presence of humanity within it. Based on this assurance, even leading contemporary scientists accept that the universe is infused with the so-called “human principle,” meaning that it came about and exists for the sake of humanity. Learn More »

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I Message for the Day of the Protection of the Environment

Monday, September 01, 1997

The all-merciful and beneficent God, who created humanity from non-being into being, so desired that His beloved creature, the king of creation, namely humanity, may enjoy His “very good” creation. Thus God wanted humanity to enjoy creation from the majestic harmony of the heavenly firmament to the natural beauty of the earthly and marine animals as well as all vegetable life, with every harmonious and numerous variation revealed on the surface of the world. For, by contemplating the balance, harmony and beauty of creation, humanity is lifted to a sense of wonder at the supremely perfect perfection of the divine Creator and, consequently, to love and worship Him. In this way, humanity is sanctified and rendered a partaker of divine blessedness, for which it was destined. Learn More »

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I Message for the Day of the Protection of the Environment

Sunday, September 01, 1996

Praise and thanksgiving and glory unto our God, venerated in the Holy Trinity, who has deemed us worthy to celebrate once more the commencement of the ecclesiastical year and the traditional feast of the new Indiction. Learn More »

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I Message for the Day of the Protection of the Environment

Friday, September 01, 1995

With the grace of God, we are called once again to celebrate the beginning of the new ecclesiastical year by making special reference, as was established several years ago, to our responsibility toward creation as it relates to the environment within and around us in general and more specifically toward what is referred to as the inanimate natural environment. Learn More »

1994 Christmas Encyclical Message

Saturday, December 03, 1994

The Christian Church was revealed – and is constantly being revealed – by the one God, the almighty creator of heaven and earth and of all things visible and invisible. These revelations are evident through the human nativity of the consubstantial Word of God. The Church has crossed the narrow confines of Palestine and the Mosaic Law and has ventured out to encounter and dialogue with the world of the Gentiles. Since the beginning, the Church did not hesitate to embrace all that the divine creator had made in His infinite providence and love. Through the life of doxological worship, particularly through the supreme expression of the divine Eucharist, the very emblems of the Gentile divinities were returned to their natural purity and a new symbolism emerged: the Christocentric reality of the cosmos and nature. Learn More »

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I Message for the Day of the Protection of the Environment

Thursday, September 01, 1994

On a number of occasions in the ecclesiastical year, the Church prays that God may protect humanity from natural catastrophes: from earthquakes, storms, famine and floods. Yet, today, we observe the reverse. On September 1st, the day devoted to God’s handiwork, the Church implores the Creator to protect nature from calamities of human origin, calamities such as pollution, war, exploitation, waste and secularism. It may seem strangely paradoxical that the body of believers, acting vicariously for the natural environment, beseeches God for projection against itself, against its own actions. Nevertheless, from this perspective, the Church, in its wisdom, brings before our eyes a message of deep significance, one that touches upon the central problems of fallen humanity and its restoration. This is the problem of the polarization of individual sin against collective responsibility. Learn More »

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I Message for the Day of the Protection of the Environment

Wednesday, September 01, 1993

Together with the other most holy sister Orthodox Churches, we have established September 1st of each year as a special day of concern for and commemoration of the natural environment that surrounds us. Again, this year, we are called to offer wholehearted praise to the Creator of everything both visible and invisible for having placed us as the ones first fashioned in luscious paradise among all His own creation. Learn More »

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I Message for the Day of the Protection of the Environment

Tuesday, September 01, 1992

The beginning of the ecclesiastical year, sanctified by the traditional celebration of the Indictus, also constitutes a characteristic juncture in the life of the entire creation that surrounds us. This juncture is known, at least to those residing in the northern hemisphere of our planet, as the commencement of autumn; to those living in the southern parts of the world, it is known as the beginning of spring. Learn More »

42 Total Articles