In a statement issued on the occasion of US Independence Day, Archbishop Elpidophoros of America said that all Orthodox Christians in the US raise their voices in defence of justice and equality with support for the downtrodden and those treated unjustly.

“This is our offering and this is our pleasure as we are all very fortunate that we lived in this land of freedom, which many have defended with personal sacrifices,” Elpidophoros said.

“All together, we have a duty to work to make this wonderful country a land of glorifying God in word and deed, so that all citizens of our nation without distinction can be happy and blessed.”

“We all thank God for this wonderful form of democracy in America. We know that every form of governance has shortcomings as those who handle the affairs of state are themselves imperfect human beings. Yet, let us be encouraged because we know very well that in this country all across the land there is a will to correct injustices of the past and to find a common ground for an understanding between everyone that will resolve them, Elpidophoros underlined.

“Precisely this is the spirit of democracy, the spirit of a people, the spirit of America.”

“The gifts of democracy cannot be taken for granted and citizens who receive them have an obligation to participate in public life, regardless of their personal political beliefs.”

Elpidophoros stressed that the Orthodox Church has invaluable moral principles and values but also acknowledges absolutely the right of other people to disagree with them.

“We all, therefore, have a duty to fight for acceptance of a different spirit of love, regardless if the different position, minority or majority, considers our views as wrong. Either all Americans have the same rights or there is no secure right for any of us,” the archbishop underlined.