Metropolitan Cleopas’s message:
SUPPORTING THE CHURCH IN SCANDINAVIA
Dearly beloved members, friends, and benefactors of the Holy Metropolis of Sweden,
The Orthodox Church begins its journey into Holy Week today as it prepares to commemorate the Lord’s salvific Passion and glorious Resurrection. Unfortunately, due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, our churches throughout Scandinavia will celebrate services “behind closed doors” so that we do not – unwittingly, of course – spread the virus to others and jeopardize the health of our parishioners due to the large crowds expected at these services.
The absence of your physical presence in church is saddening, primarily for us clergymen, who will not be able to look upon your bright eyes and smiling faces, exchange Paschal wishes with you in person, and most especially, pray alongside you at our eucharistic gatherings.
The temporary suspension of holy services up until yesterday and their celebration “behind closed doors” starting today places an economic hardship upon our parishes, which were operating so smoothly until recently, because their operational costs and the salaries of our clergy and lay associates continue to accrue, just as our spiritual and philanthropic ministry to our brethren in need continues to be offered.
During these difficult times that we are facing, I take the initiative as your bishop and fellow brother in Christ to request your moral and financial support, so that we may continue to realize our common vision and serve you, the Body of Christ. It’s not important how much you give, but that you join us in this show of solidarity.
I thank you from beforehand for your touching response to my humble request for support, and I remain,
With heartfelt brotherly wishes for a Blessed Pascha,
+ Metropolitan Cleopas of Sweden