Geronta as I remember him during my tenure at Athonias Ecclesiastical Academy, 1992 - 1996.
The dearly departed Elder Meletios, for a series of years commencing 1953 was the teacher of Byzantine Music and Art at the Athonias Ecclesiastical Academy of Karies Agion Oros (Mount Athos).
He gave his all and devoted countless hours of selfless service for his beloved students. All of his works, which he always avoided, publishing, were written specifically for the students of the Athonias Ecclesiastical Academy. He will be graciously gifted for all of his generous gifts of the Byzantine arts to generations of students by The Gift Giving Lord on the day of judgement.
He settled on Agion Oros from a young age of 17 years old and was instilled with the traditional Athonite style of Byzantine music. He lived with the excellent chanters Deacon Dionisios Firfiris, Deacon John and others, who introduced Elder Meletios as their elder and their teacher.
May the Most Holy Lord rest his soul in eternity.
Geronta and my dear friend Andrew Papadimopoulos.
Chanting during a procession in Karies, Mount Athos.
Chanting at the ancient Protaton Church at Karies, Mount Athos.
At the front of the Holy Community building, Karies, Mount Athos.
“I remember Geron Meletios from my tenure at the Athonias Ecclesiastical Academy between the years of 1992- 1996. He was a quiet monk, full of grace and wisdom. He had a subtle, sweet voice. Although he was very old, he still came to the school daily in order to teach the students the gifts that were granted to him. I do not speak for myself in saying that Geron Meletios not only influenced me and my generation of co-students, but in his decades of service at the Athonias Ecclesiastical Academy, many more generations of students who have gone on to continue his legacy. May God bless his departed soul and grant him eternity.”
I would also like to thank my dear friend Andrew Papadimopoulos, who found me via facebook after 17 years. His page dedicated to the Athonias Ecclesiastical Academy has given me an emotional trip down memory lane. Also I would like to further thank Giannis Kontsiotis for inspiring me to blog this article, after reading his blog entry.
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