Athens, May 24, 2019
In Athens to meet with His Beatitude Archbishop Ieronymos of Athens and All Greece and to inaugurate the St. Porphyrios Center for Gerontology and Welfare Support, Patriarch Bartholomew also met with U.S. Ambassador to Greece Geoffrey Pyatt this morning, reports Romfea.
“It is always a great honor for me to see his All-Holiness. This was an especially important conversation between us because we were able to discuss the plans for welcoming his All-Holiness in Washington D.C. this autumn,” Pyatt said after the meeting.
Pyatt expressed to Pat. Bartholomew his excitement over the appointment of Archbishop Elpidophoros as the head of the Greek Church in America and “our commitment at the governmental level to doing all that is appropriate to help him begin his mission successfully in the United States.”
Further, Pyatt said they had time to talk about “the critically important role that the Ecumenical Patriarch plays as a religious leader on a variety of other issues, in the Middle East, of course in the Ukraine where the voice of his All-Holiness is so important, and across the wider Orthodox world.”
Ambassador Pyatt is a well-known anti-Russian agitator. Having previously served as Ambassador to Ukraine, he was instrumental in organizing 2014’s Maidan revolution. As Ambassador to Greece, he has continued such activities, meeting with prominent figures in the Greek Orthodox world, including Pat. Bartholomew several times, His Eminence Metropolitan Hierotheos (Vlachos), Abbot Ephraim of Vatopaidi Monastery on Mt. Athos, and most recently Abp. Ieronymos, together with Ambassador at Large for International Religious Freedom Samuel Brownback.
He openly supports the creation of the so-called “Orthodox Church of Ukraine” as a means of attacking the Russian Church and is actively pressuring religious figures to recognize the new structure.
He has been described as a “Russian hate figure,” and has openly accused the Russian Church of attempting to undermine the role of the Patriarch of Constantinople and it is widely believed that he pressured Athonite abbots, Abbot Ephraim in particular, to cease their cooperation with the Russian Church.
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