‘He who comes from above is above all things; he who is of the earth is earthly, and speaks of the earth. He who comes from heaven is above all things’. (John 3:31)
In the photograph, the archbishop, who holds the highest degree of ecclesiastical authority on earth, humbles himself under the aer, which symbolizes the presence of the Holy Spirit in the Divine Liturgy. This peacefully touching moment occurs in the Holy Altar while the congregation recites the Creed of the Faith.
The waving of the aer during the Creed also symbolizes the earthquake which occurred at the time of Jesus’ resurrection from the dead (Matthew 28:1-2). The priests stop the waving of the aer at the exact point in the Creed where it says, ‘and on the third day He rose, according to the Holy Scriptures’.
This photograph shows this moment, with Metropolitan Iosif of Prikonisos (center), Abbot Efraim of Vatopaidi (right) and one of Vatopaidi’s hieromonks (left) during the recitation of the Creed.