Greece celebrates Independence Day, Feast of the Annunciation amid ongoing coronavirus pandemic
Attending priests at the Athens Metropolitan Cathedral on Wednesday morning, immediately after the Divine Liturgy, sang the Greek national anthem in an empty, of worshippers, cathedral.
Church bells of Athens-area cathedrals also rang out in joy on Wednesday morning, upon instructions by the Archbishop of Athens and All Greece, His Beatitude Ieronymos.
During a solemn ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, in front of Parliament in downtown Athens, new Greek President Katerina Sakellaropoulou laid a wreath before the monument. She was accompanied by Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, the parliament president, three opposition political leaders and the heads of the armed forces.
He stated that “…the enemy is now the pandemic and against it we will marshal our strength and unity…Only nations that are united can overcome difficulties. No social construct can stand without the foundation of health; and no citizen can be well if others around them are not well.”
In Greece’s extreme northeast on the border with Turkey, the Greek flag was raised during an poignant ceremony at the Kastanies frontier post, the very spot where over the past month thousands of third country nationals have tried to breach the border, and failed. Official Turkey has encouraged, facilitated and even forced thousands of people from various countries living in that country to illegally enter Greece, in a bid to abolish Greek and EU borders.