Corfu, Greece, October 21, 2020
His Eminence Metropolitan Nektarios of Corfu of the Greek Orthodox Church was found not guilty today on one of the two counts brought against him.
His trial opened on Monday, concerning supposed violations of pandemic restrictions in the spring. In his homily on the feast of the Annunciation, March 25, the Metropolitan called for the faithful to go to church and receive Holy Communion, thereby violating the ban on going out. He also came under fire when about 20 people attended and received Holy Communion at the Divine Liturgy for the feast of Palm Sunday, and processed with the relics of St. Spyridon inside the church.
On the charge concerning the homily in March, the court found His Eminence not guilty today, reports the Orthodoxia News Agency.
The prosecutor expressed support for Met. Nektarios on Monday, noting that he was one of the first to issue an encyclical on compliance with security measures during the pandemic. She added that after his homily, there as no increase in cases of infection, and there is no evidence that the faithful started going out without observing the required measures. She also said that the Metropolitan was trying to combine his religious duties with compliance with the law, without trying to push citizens into doing anything illegal. Further, she noted that the legislation was unclear at that time.
His trial continues on the count connected with the Palm Sunday celebrations, though the Prosecutor has spoken in his defense on that charge as well, citing the “insurmountable dilemma” that His Eminence faced due to a conflict of duties.
As on Monday, a host of hierarchs, clergy, and faithful were waiting for Met. Nektarios at the courthouse today, showing their love and support for him.