Kalavryta, Greece, July 25, 2017
Metropolitan Ambrose of Kalavryta has published an open letter on his blog in which he decries the Greek ruling authorities’ animosity towards and attempts to destroy Orthodoxy.
“While we are silent as fish,” he begins, echoing the Akathist to the Theotokos, “everything is vanishing and dying. We are persecuting Christ! The Greeks are being de-Christianized!” the bishop exclaims.
According to the metropolitan, “the people from the ruling SYRIZA party are aiming to overthrow all that is sacred, Christian, and national. They are seeking to uproot the Orthodox and national self-consciousness of the Greeks.” He also stressed that “Day by day, Greece is gradually changing its face and character.”
The participation of the so-called “conservative forces” in the destruction of Greek foundations bears witness to this pursuit. The leader of the largest opposition party “New Democracy” Kyriakos Mitsotakis gave a reception for representatives of the LGBT community in his office, and the party itself was officially represented at the most recent gay pride parade in Thessaloniki.
“The voice of the Church is not heard today; the walls are falling one by one without resistance,” the metropolitan lamented. Under such conditions, hierarchs should not “be silent as fish,” but raise their voices in defense of the Orthodox identity of Greece, Met. Ambrose stressed.
The hierarch has continually spoken out about fidelity to the Orthodox faith and the fate of Greece under its secular government. Referring to the ongoing issue of religious education, in October 2016 he wrote, “It’s obvious that the government is sneering at the Church! They have cynically deceived us! We must understand that for the government the question of religious education is closed: It’s turning into a non-confessional subject where our Savior Christ is equated with Buddha and Mohammed.”
Emphasizing an active resistance, he exclaimed, “I call you to battle for our faith! We will remember the Minister of Education’s words, promising to ‘put an end’ to religious education in the course of the year. Can we really allow this crime to be committed? Now above all—a battle!”
In January of this year, he wrote an open letter to Greek prime minister Alexis Tsipras, in which he writes that he was disappointed to find that Tsipras had “set himself the goal of destroying the Greek Orthodox Church,” and accuses the government of deliberately leading Greece to catastrophe through destroying its economy, cultural heritage, history, traditions, and Orthodox faith.
The metropolitan has also been outspoken against the outcome of 2016’s Crete Council, and especially of the document “Relations of the Orthodox Church With the Rest of the Christian World,” which many have deemed to be ecumenistic.