Oakleigh Grammar School set the tone for the 2023 academic year with an Agiasmos officiated by Bishop Kyriakos of Sozopolis alongside Sts Anargiri Father Stavros Kakavas, Archimandrite Kyrillos Zisis and Father Georgios Adamakis.

Students and staff shared the opportunity to get together without restrictions and receive the blessings for a year full of progress and prosperity.

The Oakleigh Grammar students attend the 2023 Agiasmos. Photo: Con Deves

Bishop Kyriakos advised the students to stay close to the Church and make sure they “walk the right paths” while exercising and evolving their abilities on an academic, intellectual, physical and spiritual level, in order to achieve not only their own personal goals but also become inspirational examples for the rest of society through their work.

Touching on the teachings of the three Hierarchs, through Archbishop Makarios’ message he highlighted that they were very encouraging of broader secular studies and strongly emphasised the value and importance of the Greek language. They built many schools for all the children, rich and poor, and special schools for the people to find work. St John was nicknamed Chrysostom because of the sweetness of his words. He was a charismatic orator and his sermons were powerful and as precious as gold.

“Their advice to both teachers and children is still applicable to this day. St John emphasised that education is superior to any other profession because it has to do with forming souls. He focused on the character of the teacher and recommended that anyone wishing to undertake the task of educator should be compassionate and self-effacing. They should demonstrate their love for their students and recognise the specific qualities of each one. Moreover, they should always confirm what they taught with their own, personal example.”

The psalms of the Agiasmos liturgy were sung by the Oakleigh Grammar Byzantine Choir.

Students and staff attend the Oakleigh Grammar Agiasmos. Photo: Con Deves