Popular Hollywood star Jonathan Jackson, visited Holy Mount Athos together with his 8-year-old-son on Tuesday, to offer one of his Emmy Awards, reports vimaorthodoxias.gr.
During his five day visit, Jackson spent most of his time at the Vatopedi Monastery in the Monks Republic Mount Athos to honour the Dormition of the Virgin Mary but also visited the Xenophontos and Simonopetra Monasteries.
Jackson, who attended all services with his son, is overwhelmed by the life of Athonite monks. He has characterized Archimandrite Ephraim, Abbot of Vatopedi Monastery, as “a man filled with the love of Christ”. Jackson has been in close contact with the Vatopedi Monastery ever since he was baptized Greek Orthodox in 2012. In an interview given to Greek journalist, Jackson stated that he has read much about the Holy Mountain and dreamt of visiting Mount Athos and seeing the holy place where people for more than 1000 years are praying for mankind.
As a pilgrimage to Mount Athos, Jackson offered his Emmy Award he received in 2012 to Metropolitan Bishop Atlantas Alexios and received the blessing by Abbot Efraim. “This symbolic gesture deeply touched the holy father,” stated vimaorthodoxias.gr.
In the same year and during his acceptance speech for his Emmy Award, he thanked the Holy Trinity as well as the monks of Mount Athos.
Jackson later explained in an interview, “These people (are) dedicating their lives to prayer, and not just praying for themselves, but truly praying for all of us. And then the thought kind of crossed my mind: with all the destruction, chaos and insanity that goes on in this world, if their prayers weren’t happening, what would this world be like? I felt personally like I just wanted to thank them because I really believe that their prayers mean a lot.”
Skai.gr reported that Jackson is planning a film about Elder Joseph the Hesychast, (1897-1959) a monk of Mount Athos acclaimed to be the spiritual father of Elders Ephrem of Philotheou, Joseph of Vatopedi, Charalampus of Dionysiou and others, who are directly credited for revitalising six of the twenty monasteries on Mount Athos. The film location is to take place on Mount Athos and on the island of Paros where the Elder was born.
Jackson’s well-known character was ‘Lucky Spencer’ on the ABC Daytime soap opera General Hospital, a role that has won him five Emmy Awards.