Greek Synod opens case against metropolitans who criticized decision to serve Pascha early

Athens, May 12, 2021

Met. Seraphim of Kythira (left), Met. Kosmoas of Aetolia (right). Photo: Romfea Met. Seraphim of Kythira (left), Met. Kosmoas of Aetolia (right). Photo: Romfea     

Convened yesterday and today under the chairmanship of Archbishop Ieronymos of Athens, the Holy Synod of the Church of Greece decided to launch an investigation into two hierarchs who criticized the Synod’s decision to hold Pascha services a few hours earlier on Holy Saturday evening in order to accommodate the state curfew.

The Synod made an extensive review of the conduct and discipline of all clergy regarding the Synodal decision of April 20 that regulated what time the services of Holy Week and Pascha were to be celebrated. The hierarchs expressed their “sorrow and disapproval” of those cases where clergy intentionally disobeyed the unanimous Synodal decision, according to the Synodal report published by Romfea.

Thus, “after much sorrow,” the Synod decided to ask its Committee for Doctrinal and Canonical Issues to gather files on His Eminence Metropolitan Seraphim of Kythira and His Eminence Metropolitan Kosmas of Aetolia and to submit suggestions on how to proceed concerning their letter and other actions by which they “expressed insubordination and disrespect for the unanimous decision of the collegiate governing body of the Church of Greece regarding the extraordinary procedure for the celebration of the holy services due to health restrictions.”

Soon after the Synod’s decision on April 20, the Metropolitans sent a joint letter protesting the decision to celebrate Pascha at 9:00 PM on Holy Saturday, characterizing it as a transgression against Church Tradition. There can be no economia in this matter, the hierarchs wrote.

And at an assembly on April 23, the clergy of the Metropolis of Kythira declared that they could not obey the Synod’s dictate in good conscience, but would instead serve later on the day of Pascha.

“It is with regret” that Abp. Ieronymos and the other Synodal hierarchs acknowledge that Met. Seraphim of Kythira especially, through his latest text to the Synod criticizing its decisions concerning the pandemic, “isolates himself and sets himself apart from the collective effort of the Church of Greece, which as a whole strives and works hard for the unimpeded celebration of the services, as well as for the observance of sanitary measures.”

Met. Seraphim has expressed his displeasure with the state’s and Synod’s decisions throughout the pandemic. In March 2020, he was arrested for defying the state’s order and continuing to celebrate the Divine services. In January of this year, it was reported that he was under investigation for his statements against COVID vaccines, and he has said several times that closing churches only worsens the pandemic.

Met. Kosmas has also spoken out. In September, OrthoChristian reported on his statement against wearing masks in church.

“God does not allow you to be infected in church. God does not infect! Let us understand… It is a holy place. ‘The church is Heaven,’ says St. Kosmas of Aetolia. The altar is of God,” His Eminence emphasized.

OrthoChristian reported yesterday that several priests from Thessaloniki will stand trial for celebrating Pascha at midnight.

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ACatharina5/13/2021 10:35 am
Btw, a few days ago there was a scandal in Czech republic: Google tracks location on your smartphone and sends it to the police. When they record 10-30 or so "phone numbers" congregating in a location, Google sends police a notification and they may send their people to that place (the church, an "illegaly" open bar or café, etc.). And yeah, all is legal by Google's terms of service you agreed with. So I suggest leaving your phones home, when going to an "illegal" Liturgy.
ACatharina5/13/2021 10:05 am
Standing a trial for celebrating Pascha at midnight? What an unforgivable terrorist act. Seriously, whoever snitched on the priests has no soul.
Utrecht5/13/2021 7:39 am
Glory to God! May Our Lord give Met. Seraphim and Met. Kosmas glorious reward in His Kingdom for their persecutions and may we follow their leadership in never betraying Our Lord! There have been ZERO incorrupt relics of a modernist ecumenist, so listen to our modern Saints, Lord have mercy on these synodal members and all our Hierarches and Bishops. "Very difficult days are coming. Take care of your soul! Gather and give your fight!" Elder Ephraim "In the future, Orthodox Christians will be divided - every society will come, 'we are not asking you to deny Christ, but to accept all religions, as "paths up the mountain"' - Fr Daniel, Sysoev, New Martyr "They will legally introduce carnivals in the Church with a law." Elder Vasileios of Kafsokalivia, 2012 “Do not tolerate any more foolishness or misguidance from priests or archpriests. Do not turn a blind eye for you will be co-responsible. The Saints are forewarning you.” St John Maximovitch
Cristoforo Testori5/13/2021 2:07 am
Something will happen in the Church of Greece... Met. Seraphim is one of the few greek bishops who refused to recognize the ukrainian schismatics.
Tik5/12/2021 10:52 pm
Well, just more evidence that the Greeks are quickly leaving the fold of Christ's church.
Antiochene Son5/12/2021 9:13 pm
Once again, as throughout history, we see true, faithful bishops being persecuted by those who bend the knee to the state and secular powers. How many times must this story repeat itself before the hierarchy realizes they are on the wrong side?
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