St Spyridon Parish Sydney will hold a mourning service on Friday night (tonight), for the “horrible decision of the President of Turkey to turn the Temple of Hagia Sophia into an Islamic mosque.”
The Sydney Parish received a special blessing from His Eminence Archbishop Makarios to hold the service at the same time Hagia Sophia will be opened as a mosque, at 7pm (AEST).
“We will sing the Akathist Hymn tomorrow night at St Spyridon as an indication of mourning, the same time the of the first Islamic prayer at Hagia Sophia,” the statement reads.
The church invites parishioners and all Orthodox Greeks to attend and witness the Akathist Hymn.
The Turkish high court ruled that Istanbul’s iconic Hagia Sophia was to be converted back into a mosque on July 10 following the request of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. The Hagia Sophia was built 1,500 years ago as an Orthodox Christian cathedral during the Byzantine Empire, and was since turned into a UNESCO World Heritage Site, visited by millions of tourists each year