FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Court to try Esphigmenou monks for schism and heresy
The charge of schism and heresy by a government against its own citizens, has not been seen in modern European history. That chapter of European history, where the Church accuses someone and then demands that the State apparatus move against them and confiscate their property unless they "repent", is coming back to life today in Greece.
The patriarch in
The Patriarch has refused any dialogue with the monks and has demanded their unconditional repentance rather than address their legitimate concerns regarding his teachings and practices which are in conflict with the teachings of the Orthodox Church. Instead he has moved to evict the monks from the only home they know.
The Greek Government has shamefully acquiesced to pressure by the Patriarch to use force to blockade and evict the monks. Greek Foreign Minister Ms. Dora Bakoyiannis, under whose ultimate authority Mt Athos resides, controls the apparatus of the
In an attempt to hide these actions against Esphigmenou monastery from public view, the Patriarch and his accomplices in the Greek government have established an imposter brotherhood, using the same name “Esphigmenou” and have begun to divert all mail, bank accounts and real estate belonging to the monastery to the new imposter brotherhood which they control. This is done while the true brotherhood is blockaded in their monastery and prohibited by the Greek police and coast guard from receiving deliveries of food, heating oil, or visits from doctors to care for sick and elderly monks. The monastery’s tractor has been seized by the police to prevent the monks from growing their own food, and their telephone lines have been cut to prevent communication to the outside world. Five monks have died without having received medical attention, as the police have physically prohibited doctors from entering the monastery to provide care.
Recently, monks of the impostor brotherhood have seized land belonging to the besieged Monastery of Esphigmenou and have begun clearing the area to set foundations for building, thereby attempting to gain legitimacy for their brotherhood, claiming that they are on Esphigmenou Monastery land and that their false abbot, Chrysostomos Katsoulieries, can claim to be abbot.
For further information please contact:
John Rigas in