Abba Seraphim replies to Pope Tawadros

Your Holiness,

Kissing your holy hands and asking for your blessing.

In expressing my heartfelt thanks for the kind message which you sent by the hands of H.G. Bishop Kyrillos, to mark the 20th anniversary of the union of the British Orthodox with the Patriarchate of Alexandria, I do so on behalf of all our clergy and faithful who look to you as their spiritual father. The inspired choice of Bishop Kyrillos as the Papal Exarch for all Europe has already begun a process of deeper co-operation between the churches here, and the presence at our celebration of my brothers, Bishops Pavlos of Greece and Louka of Geneva, eloquently manifested that same fraternal spirit.

Over these two decades we have worked zealously, endeavouring to fulfil our commission for the restoration of Orthodoxy among the British people and to provide a powerful witness to the Orthodox Faith and Tradition in an increasingly secular society. Equally, we have sought to draw strength and inspiration from the profound spiritual riches of the Coptic Church as well as our wider Oriental Orthodox family. Her saints have become our saints; her faith has become our faith.

Twenty years ago, the late Pope Shenouda welcomed the union of the British Orthodox, saying it would mean more people to pray for him and it was our joy and privilege to do so while he was among us, as it is now to commemorate him in the heavenly realm. For us he will always be a deeply venerated and loved figure.

We pray daily for Your Holiness that our Heavenly Father will use you to pour out His blessings to the faithful and to grant you good health, strength and wisdom in discharging your duties as Pope & Patriarch. On the occasion of this Anniversary we take the opportunity to renew in love our commitment to the Holy Orthodox Faith, to the Alexandrian Patriarchate and to Your Holiness’s person.

Asking that you will continue to remember the British Orthodox in your holy prayers.

Your affectionate and devoted son-in-Christ,

+ Seraphim

Metropolitan of Glastonbury