March 26, 2014
To the Most Reverend Hierarchs, Priests and Deacons, Monastics and Faithfull of the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America
Your Eminences, Your Graces, Reverend Fathers, beloved brothers and sisters in the Lord,
It is with deep sadness that we heard about the passing away of His Eminence Metropolitan Philip, our brother and concelebrant of the holy mysteries. Metropolitan Philip was a great leader who accomplished a remarkable service in the Orthodox Church on this continent. We all know his devotion to the Church of our Lord, his vision for the unity of the Orthodox Church, his tremendous work in the various fields of the mission of the Antiochian Archdiocese. The whole Orthodox family in America expresses thanksgiving to the Lord for the dedicated service of our father and brother Metropolitan Philip.
For the past 12 years I have personally learned from his mission and was challenged by his vision for the future of the Orthodoxy in America. I could appreciate the personality and the charisma of the leader of the Antiochian Archdiocese. I am grateful for such opportunity.
On behalf of the priests and faithful of our Archdiocese, please accept our sincere condolences. We pray our Lord Jesus Christ to establish his soul where the righteous repose. We assure you of our prayers for the soul of His departed servant Metropolitan Philip.
May God rest his soul in peace!
† Archbishop NICOLAE