During his official visit to Greece, HRH Prince Charles of Wales met Thursday with Archbishop Ieronymos of Athens and All Greece.
After welcoming the heir to the British throne at the Archdiocese’s office in Athens, His Beatitude Archbishop Ieronymos II referred to the philanthropic work of the Church and the ties between the two countries.
‘It is well known how much you love our country, how deeply you respect our Orthodoxy, and this has been demonstrated I believe as we all know by your frequent, many visits both to the holy monasteries of Mount Athos and the monasteries of Romania,’ Abp Ieronymos said in his welcoming speech.
‘We know how deeply interested you are in the theological research, research that pertains to an inner quest, but also in culture, art and history,’ the Archbishop of Athens added.
Archbishop Ieronymos presented the Prince of Wales with an icon depicting the Most Holy Mother of God.
— Clarence House (@ClarenceHouse) 10 mai 2018
Prince Charles thanked the Archbishop for the warm welcome.
‘I am grateful for your very kind words and your extremely generous welcome. And I am enormously touched that you should receive me here on this visit to Athens. And to me it is a particular joy to be able to come and meet you after all these years,’ Prince Charles said according to Iefimerida.
‘As you said I have visited the Holy Mountain on various occasions and also as you mentioned other monasteries in Romania.’
‘And I think done so I at least have an appreciation and a great understanding of the traditions of the Orthodox Church.’
‘And I know that under your leadership so much has been done through the charity Apostoli to help so many people in Greece during this most difficult period,’ Prince Charles said Thursday, May 10.
‘If I may say so, I am full of admiration for the way in which the hardships and difficulties experienced by so many people whether Greek or people from other countries, the way in which these particular difficulties and problems have been assisted by the Greek Orthodox Church.’
‘I think that you know as I mentioned last night at dinner that I am happy to be able to continue to contribute in a small way through one of my particular charities towards the encouragement and development of young Greeks’ opportunities in the future,’ the Prince of Wales noted.
‘And I will most certainly pass on your very kind message to the Archbishop of Canterbury when I return to the United Kingdom. And I am sure he will look forward at some point to a visit from you.’
‘Once again I am enormously grateful to you for your very kind welcome and for the magnificent gift of the icon.’
‘I am afraid my gift is very inadequate in return,’ the British heir said ending his speech.
Britain’s Prince Charles embarked Wednesday on an official visit to Greece, the birthplace of his father and kingdom of his paternal great-grandfather.
Charles was accompanied by his wife, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall.
On Friday, the royal couple will visit the island of Crete.
Photpgraphy courtesy of Clarence House / Twitter