Archbishop Makarios recognises the role of women on International Women’s Day

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In a message to mark International Women’s Day 2021, His Eminence Archbishop Makarios of Australia has praised the holiest woman, the Virgin Mary, while also recognising “the important and the multi-dimensional role of all women.”

Full Message in English:

For the whole Christian world and especially for us Orthodox Christians, the holiest and most respected human person is Panagia, the Virgin Mary. We respect, honour and express our gratitude to the Most Holy Theotokos, who contributed to the fulfillment of the divine Incarnation and, through it, paved the way for our salvation.

Praising and glorifying the Virgin Mary, the woman who united earth with heaven, we cannot but simultaneously recognise both the important and the multi-dimensional role of all women, in family, in our society, in humanity as a whole.

Today, on the occasion of the internationally agreed date that is dedicated to women’s rights, we are called to ponder our duty to build a world without discrimination between males and females, without contempt, without oppression, without exploitation of women; a world with absolute respect for our neighbour, whoever they may be.

Apostle Paul reminds us, “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus,” and inspires us to struggle daily with dedication, and in every aspect of our lives and in our daily routines, for the elimination of discrimination and inequality.

“… for you are all one in Christ Jesus…”!

Full Message in Greek:

Για όλον τον Χριστιανικό κόσμο και ειδικώς για εμάς τους Ορθόδοξους Χριστιανούς το ιερότερο και σεβαστότερο ανθρώπινο πρόσωπο είναι η Παναγία. Σεβόμαστε, τιμούμε και καταθέτουμε την ευγνωμοσύνη μας στην Υπεραγία Θεοτόκο, η οποία συνέβαλε στην πραγμάτωση της Θείας Ενανθρωπήσεως και, δια αυτής, άνοιξε τον δρόμο για τη Σωτηρία μας.

Υμνώντας και δοξάζοντας την Παναγία, τη γυναίκα που ένωσε τη γη με τον ουρανό, δεν μπορούμε παρά να αναγνωρίζουμε ταυτόχρονα τον σπουδαίο και πολυδιάστατο ρόλο όλων των γυναικών, στην οικογένεια, στην κοινωνία μας, συνολικά στην ανθρωπότητα.

Σήμερα, με αφορμή μια συμβατική ημερομηνία, που είναι αφιερωμένη στα δικαιώματα των γυναικών, καλούμαστε να αναλογιστούμε το χρέος μας για την οικοδόμηση ενός κόσμου δίχως διακρίσεις ανάμεσα στα φύλα, δίχως περιφρόνηση, δίχως καταπίεση, δίχως εκμετάλλευση σε βάρος της γυναίκας. Ενός κόσμου με απόλυτο σεβασμό στο πρόσωπο του πλησίον, όποιο κι αν είναι αυτό.

“Οὐκ ἔνι Ἰουδαῖος οὐδὲ Ἕλλην, οὐκ ἔνι δοῦλος οὐδὲ ἐλεύθερος, οὐκ ἔνι ἄρσεν καὶ θῆλυ· πάντες γὰρ ὑμεῖς εἷς ἐστε ἐν Χριστῷ Ἰησοῦ”, μάς υπενθυμίζει ο Απόστολος Παύλος, και μάς εμπνέει να αγωνιστούμε με αφοσίωση, κάθε μέρα και σε κάθε έκφανση της ζωής και της καθημερινότητάς μας, για τον σκοπό της εξάλειψης των διακρίσεων και των ανισοτήτων.

“Πάντες γὰρ ὑμεῖς εἷς ἐστε ἐν Χριστῷ Ἰησοῦ…”!

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