Yes… I know that this is Simonopetra… it’s just a generic “Holy Mountain” image…
On Saturday, a spokesman for Vatopedi Monastery told Interfax that the abbot of the monastery, Archimandrite Ephrem, whom the Greek police suspect of economic crimes, is going to turn himself in to police. He said that a court ordered Fr Ephrem’s arrest on Friday. The spokesman went on to state to our Interfax correspondent, as an expression of his personal views, “The arrest is purely political in nature. Less than a month ago, the Belt of the Mother of God, which is kept at Vatopedi Monastery, was brought to Russia, so, I don’t rule out that this move by the Greek authorities might be associated with that fact”. Interfax doesn’t have an official reaction from the Greek authorities on this matter.
One of the most revered Orthodox relics, the Belt of the Most Holy Mother of God, was in Russia from 20 October to 28 November. During this time, almost 3 million people venerated the relic, including top leaders of the Russian state. Originally, the Belt was supposed to return to Mount Athos on 23 November, but the Athonite fathers extended its stay in Russia because of the unprecedented scale of the pilgrimage to it. The record for the length of the queue to the shrine and the waiting time in it was in Moscow, where it was 6 kilometres (3.72 miles) long and people waited up to 26 hours. In St Petersburg, the queue stretched for 3 kilometres (1.86 miles), and in other cities, it averaged about 2 kilometres (1.25 miles) in length. The Foundation of St Andrew the First-Called sponsored the tour of the Belt of the Mother of God to Russia. Typically, once a year, the Vatopedi fathers take the reliquary with the Belt to one or another Greek city in response to urgent requests of the faithful. Previously, Vatopedi Monastery, the largest monastery in Greece, refused all requests from other countries to bring the reliquary there, particularly, from the United States and Romania. They made an exception for Russia.
Due to the advice of physicians who accompanied them, Greek police didn’t arrest Archimandrite Ephrem, the abbot of Vatopedi Monastery. On Saturday evening, a spokesman of the monastery told Interfax, “Today, police arrived at the monastery to arrest of Archimandrite Ephrem. However, after examining the abbot, the doctors who came with the police decided that it would be unwise for the archimandrite to leave the monastery due to health reasons”. Our source told us that Fr Ephraim’s “very sick and the decision of the Greek court to arrest him caused him much stress”. As reported late last week, Greek police suspect him of economic crimes, so, a court ordered the archimandrite’s arrest.
The MP DECR felt that the decision to arrest Fr Ephrem was unduly harsh. Archpriest Igor Yakimchuk, Secretary of the DECR, told Interfax-Religion, “This is an unprecedented event, so, naturally, we’re concerned. Even if we allow that Fr Ephrem may be guilty of something, the arrest of a monk who’s the superior of a monastery is an extraordinary action”. For its part, a statement from the Foundation of St Andrew the First-Called said that such decisions are the result of “the political agenda of certain circles of the Greek establishment, who wish to demonstrate to the West that they’re prepared to deny the principles of spiritual life, as they’re embodied in the Greek Constitution. We have special indignation that the court actions are directed against a spiritual master, one of the most respected on Mount Athos, an elderly and ailing man who suffers from many illnesses”. The Foundation urged the Holy Community (Ιερά Κοινότητα (Iera Kinotita)) (the governing body of Mount Athos), Patriarch Kirill Gundyaev of Moscow and all the Russias, the First Hierarchs of the other Local Orthodox Churches, and ordinary believers to defend Fr Ephrem, “who’s subject to persecution not commensurate with the ostensible reason for the affair”.
24/26 December 2011
Lest we forget, Langley fomented a coup against an Ecumenical Patriarch in 1948… his only sin was being leftist in politics and being friendly to the Centre. This smells of the same fishy brew, doesn’t it? Don’t forget… one of the main spokesmen in the anti-reconciliation bloc in the ROCOR in 2007 was George Stephanopoulos’ sister, who was a ROCOR nun in the Holy Land at the time. The CIA will do anything to drive a wedge between the Centre and “Greek” Orthodox… and to aid “anti-communist” elements amongst Russian Orthodox (thus, creating disunity in our ranks). This smells like another American interference in Greek Orthodox and Greek affairs. Keep focused… my information tells me that the rank n’ file priests in the Rodina told their parishioners to vote “Red” in the last election. My contacts also tell me that the Greek Church is hard–pressed due to the need to support people left without a prayer due to cuts by the Greek government (which like their American counterparts, targeted the weak and asked NOTHING of the moneyed… I wonder why).
This is why both the Republican and Democratic Parties are equally crank. Both wink at the use of the American special services to interfere in the internal affairs of the Local Orthodox Churches and in the countries of the Orthodox civilisational sphere. That’s why the CFR’s an extremist organisation… no matter where they stand on domestic politics, all those affiliated with this evil coterie have the crackbrained notion that they have a mission to spread American “democracy” and “freedom” using whatever means it takes… including the most foul and violent, if it comes to that. Don’t forget… prior to the 2007 reconciliation, the ROCOR was reliably in Langley’s corner. I’ll be blunt… anti-communism was more important than Christianity was to all too many ROCOR apparatchiki! I’m NOT over-exaggerating. The lies that issued out of Jordanville boggled the mind (especially concerning the Cossack incident in Austria and the Vlasovtsy)… political zaniness and historical crankiness complemented its doctrinal straightness. People stayed faithful because of their spirituality… not because of their rightwing secular notions and fantasies.
Let’s stand up and show that REAL Orthodox are against such depravity, baseness, and evil (and oppose its willing mouthpieces like JP, Lyonyo, Potapov, Serge Schmemann, Anya Schmemann, and Sophia Kishkovsky)… our eternal destiny DOES depend on it.