Florence, Arizona, December 12, 2019
Thousands of Orthodox faithful, including hierarchs, clergy, monastics, and laity went on pilgrimage yesterday to St. Anthony’s Monastery in Florence, Arizona to bid farewell to their beloved Elder Ephraim, who peacefully reposed in the Lord in the evening of December 7.
Geronda Ephraim is known as a faithful disciple of St. Joseph the Hesychast who served as abbot at Philotheou Monastery and helped repopulate several other monasteries on Mt. Athos and who founded nearly 20 monasteries throughout America and Canada. He had 1,000s of spiritual children who came to him from throughout the Orthodox world for guidance and consolation.
The funeral service for the great elder was celebrated by Archbishop Elpidophoros, the primate of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, Metropolitan Alexios of Atlanta, Metropolitan Gerasimos of San Francisco, Metropolitan Isaiah of Denver, clergy from the monasteries he founded, and a number of visiting clergy, reports the Orthodoxia News Agency.
Philotheou Monastery on Mt. Athos, where Elder Ephraim served as abbot for many years, was represented by the current abbot, Archimandrite Nikodimos. Several other Athonite fathers were also in attendance.
The Metropolis of Limassol in Cyprus was represented by Protosingellos Fr. Isaac Machairiotis.
In his words on the occasion, Abp. Elpidophoros encouraged the faithful to ask Elder Ephraim for his intercessions, as he lived as a saint and leaves us as a saint.
Watch the entire funeral service below:
Watch the procession with the Elder’s body: