Archbishop Makarios paid a historic visit to the Greek Community of Melbourne (GCM) on Wednesday, where he met Board and staff members.
Following a tour at the Greek Centre, Archbishop Makarios was briefed on the activities and programs of the GCM. He expressed his interest to continue the current constructive cooperation between the two institutions for the benefit of the GCM and the Greek community.
He also agreed that all Greek organizations should work together to promote our language and culture through schools and other joint ventures.
"The Archbishop's visit to our organisation highlights our continued cooperation with the Archdiocese for the benefit of the Greek community," said GCM’s Vice President Ms Tammy Iliou.
Archbishop Makarios visited the GCM together with Bishops Ezekiel and Iakovos, the Reverend Cyril and Constantine, and the Deacons Athinagoras and Stephen.
The Archbishop was welcomed to the Greek Centre by Vice President Tammy Iliou, Treasurer Marinis PIrpIris, and Board members Nikos Koukouvitakis, Michalis Karamitos and Voula Kallianis.
Ms. Iliou welcomed Mr Makarios to the Greek Centre and conveyed the regards of President Bill Papastergiades, who is overseas, by saying that it was a great honor and pleasure to meet him at the GCM. The Archbishop said that he would meet with Mr. Papastergiadis after his return from Greece.
"We recognise and appreciate your visit and look forward to continuing our cooperation with the Archdiocese,” Ms Iliou said and invited the Archbishop to attend the official launch of the Lonsdale Street Greek Festival.
Mr Makarios accepted the invitation and expressed his interest in the GCM programs especially in the schools, welcoming the work done by the Community, and stressing that all the Greek organisations should work together in promoting and teaching our language in Australia.
The GCM hosted a lunch in honour of the Archbishop at the Melina on the Rooftop restaurant. The lunch was also attended by GCM’s main benefactors, priests of the GCM churches, and staff members.
Finally, Mr Makarios expressed his desire to continue the communication with the GCM and promised to meet with the absent GCM Board members during his second visit to Melbourne in October.