New York.- Greek Orthodox around the world celebrated the Resurrection of Christ. Archbishop Demetrios presided over the services in Holy Saturday Evening, as well as the Easter Sunday Agape Service, at the Holy Trinity Cathedral, in New York City.
Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew celebrated Easter in the Patriarchal Church of Agios Georgios in Fanari, while Archbishop Christodoulos, along with Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis, attended the service at the Cathedral.
Good Friday was a day of recollection and fasting for the Orthodox Christians, which attended the procession of the Epitafeios with devoutness, singing the hymns of the day and of Christ’s burial awaiting the hopeful message of the Resurrection.
Thousands of followers attended the morning’s sermon in the orthodox churches allover the world. The traditions of this day give their special tone to the Orthodox faith since women have been decorating the Epitafeios with spring flowers, while its procession is an important moment during the holy days of Easter.
Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew devotedly kneeled by the Epitafeios in the Patriarchal Church of Agios Georgios in Fanari, while Archbishop Christodoulos attended the reenactment of Christ being taken down from the crucifix at the Pendeli Monastery.
The Easter exodus peaked on Good Friday as Greeks abandoned the cities to celebrate Easter in the countryside, in the time-honoured traditional manner.
Particularly jammed were the main routes out of Athens, the Athens-Lamia and Athens-Corinth national highways, where traffic police reported problems until late into Friday morning.
Main opposition PASOK leader George Papandreou will be spending Easter on islands near Athens, arriving on Friday on the small island of Spetses in the Saronic Gulf in order to attend the Epitaph procession. Papandreou will attend the midnight resurrection mass on Saturday in Ydra and visit an army camp in Nafplio on Easter Sunday.
Communist Party of Greece (KKE) General Secretary Aleka Papariga will visit the Dekeleia airport at Tatoi on Easter Sunday, while Coalition of the Left, Movements and Ecology leader Alekos Alavanos will spend Easter on his home island of Tinos, where he will visit the local old people’s home.