The Pope’s visit (to Cyprus) becomes a scandal for the faithful

Metropolitan Athanasios: I have refused to attend the celebrations marking his visit

An interview with Antigoni Solomonidou-Drousiotou


The Metropolitan of Lemesos, Athanasios, distances himself from the Church of Cyprus’ official position on the forthcoming visit to the island of Pope Benedict. He plainly declares that he opposes the visit, explaining that Catholicism is a heresy and the visit of the Head of the Catholic Church to Cyprus will scandalize the minds of innocent, faithfully people. At the same time, he stresses that neither adverse reactions nor rude or bad manners must be shown.

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Elder Paisios of Mount Athos on the «Old Calendarists»

Ελληνικά – In Greek

calend1Elder Paisios dealt with the Calendar issue too. He was really worried for the division the issue has caused and he was praying about it. He was really worried for the groups formed by old calendarists behaving independently having no communion with the Orthodox Patriarchates and the local Orthodox Churches. Some groups of those kinds that were in Athens and Thessalonica, united under his instruction with the Church of Greece, keeping at the same time the old calendar.
The elder said: «It would have been good if this calendar difference did not exist, but it is not a matter of faith». In the objections that the New Calendar was done by a Pope he would reply: «The new calendar was made by a Pope and the old one by an idolater,» meaning of course Julius Caesar. In order to understand the position of the Elder more clearly on the matter, the following incident is mentioned.
An Orthodox Christian who was Greek in origin had lived with his family in the USA for many years. He had a serious problem, though. He was himself a «zealot» (old calendarist) whereas his wife and children followed the New Calendar. «We could not celebrate a feast together like a family», he used to say. ??They would celebrate Christmas when for me was St. Spyridon’s Feast. When I had Christmas, they had St. John’s. And that was the least of our problems. The worst thing was to know, as they had been teaching us, that the NCs are heretics and will be damned.

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