Athens, January 15, 2020
The Three Holy Hierarchs—Sts. Basil the Great, Gregory the Theologian, and John Chrysostom—are the patron saints of schools and education for the Orthodox faithful, and their feast, January 30 on the new calendar, was traditionally celebrated as a school holiday in Greece.
However, the Greek Education of Ministry has announced that classes will be held as normal on their feast this year, reports the National Herald.
Orthodox hierarchs have different views of the Ministry’s move. Metropolitan Amphilochios of Kisamos and Selinos of the Patriarchate of Constantinople criticized the government’s decision, reports Romfea.
“What kind of Greece, what kind of homeland do we want? It’s difficult to answer. Self-evident things are increasingly being overthrown and placed under doubt,” the Metropolitan writes.
According to him, the Greek government is creating a country where LGBT pride, gender ideology, the ability to change the gender of teenagers, the right to blasphemy, the ability to remove religious symbols from public institutions and cremate the dead as garbage are legalized. “That is, a country where everything is destroyed, sold out and leveled in the name of supposed ‘modernization’ and ‘progress,’” Met. Amphilochios says.
“If this is ‘the modernization of society,’” he concludes, “then the goal of this ‘modernization’ is to stop being Greek.”
On the other hand, Archbishop Ieronymos of Athens applauds the government’s decision, saying, “They did what needed to be done.”
“The holiday is for the lazy,” he added. Instead of a day off of school, children will attend church, classes, and special events in honor of the Three Holy Hierarchs, he noted.