Orthodox Times website received $100,000 grant from U.S. State Department

Keratsini, Attiki, Greece, December 17, 2019

The Orthodox Times team with U.S. Ambassador Geoffrey Pyatt. Photo: orthodoxtimes.com The Orthodox Times team with U.S. Ambassador Geoffrey Pyatt. Photo: orthodoxtimes.com

The Orthodox Times outlet began as the English edition of the widely-read Greek Orthodox outlet Romfea in late December last year, with its official launch in January of this year, with the backing of the U.S. government.

In February, the outlet reported that U.S. Ambassador to Greece Geoffrey Pyatt met with its editorial team, after which the Ambassador tweeted: “Enjoyed meeting the @RomfeaNews team. We are excited @StateDept provided support for the launch of this meaningful effort to strengthen the free press, fight disinformation, & highlight the values we share with Orthodoxy and the Ecumenical Patriarch.”

According to the official U.S. government website USASPENDING.gov, this support came in the form of a $100,000 grant.


Screenshot from usaspending.gov Screenshot from usaspending.gov

Orthodox Times was initially known as Romfea News, as reflected in Ambassador Pyatt’s tweet.

The funds were granted by the Department of State to the World Media Orthodox Network Private Company. According to Orthodox Times’ “About Us” page, “The Portal is owned by World Media Orthodox Network.”

The administrative agency for the grant is the Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs of the State Department, and falls under the category “19.878: EUR-OTHER,” whose “primary goal is to promote democratic and free market transitions in the former communist countries of Central and Eastern Europe and Eurasia, enabling them to overcome their past and become reliable, productive members of the Euro-Atlantic community of Western democracies.”

The U.S. State Department has also been open about its support for Patriarch Bartholomew’s creation of the “Orthodox Church of Ukraine,” and “Metropolitan” Epiphany Dumenko personally thanked Secretary of State Mike Pompeo for the U.S.’s support in the creation of the OCU.

Although the period of the grant ended on October 31, 2019, World Media Orthodox Network Private Company also has an entry on the government “System for Award Management” website showing that the company is registered from 6/14/2019 to 6/12/2020, with its purpose of registration listed as “Federal Assistance Awards Only.”

Screenshot from sam.gov Screenshot from sam.gov

As OrthoChristian was recently informed by the Orthodox Times editor, the site no longer has a connection to Romfea.


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 Patriarch Bartholomew several times, Metropolitan Hierotheos (Vlachos), Abbot Ephraim of Vatopaidi Monastery on Mt. Athos, and Archbishop Ieronymos.

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.

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Tom1/1/2020 7:43 pm
Nothing is free. That little bit of money ($100k is a lot of money to you or more, but for even a niche media company it's not much) comes with a hefty price tag in return. Obviously, as others have pointed out, there's the US/EU/NATO strategic interest in fomenting continued discontent between Ukraine and Russia. Also, though, I suspect we'll see warmer and warmer messages regarding transsexualism and other pet causes of the globalists which work to undermine religion, family, and community. Orthodox brothers and sisters, stay strong! Keep talking to one another and supporting one another against these menaces. We're in this together, and ultimately the entire world - as different as our religions and cultures may be - is under the common threat of the globalist monoculture coming to devour us all.
George Costalas12/20/2019 8:57 pm
Anything from the US government including the State Department isn’t just Blood Money, it’s Satan’s money.
Dimitrios12/18/2019 2:04 pm
Pyatt and Pompeo using Bartholomew for political ends, and Bart is ready to stretch out his hand and receive his 30 pieces of silver. This absolutely sickens me!
Kosta12/18/2019 5:45 am
Too bad Pyatt and Pompeo didnt realize that Greeks like me exist. I can counter all their cacodox propaganda. You see what these amero-******* cant comprehend is we know how Orthodoxy works. We know the canons and who are the heretics. We know who works at the Greek Orthodox archdiocese and who at the Phanar. We know who the archons are and their weaknesses.
I know who the traitors to Orthodoxy are and how to deal with them. Pyatt and Pomleo wants to meddle in Byzantine ecclesiastical politics not knowing what they are getting entangled in. The U.S.State Department jumped in feet first in something they know nothing about and they will get eaten up alive. They should have stuck to bombing brown people, because they have entered a blackhole where the gnashing of their teeth is all they will do.
Gary Cox12/17/2019 9:31 pm
Renovationalist church re-surfaced in America???
Mikhail12/17/2019 5:11 pm
The actions of Pyatt continues to sicken me. He is non-stop in his zeal to destroy the Holy Orthodox Church. Now he has created his own "Pravda." Lord have mercy!
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