Greek Synod condemns Metropolitan’s scandalous statements on rape

Athens, September 2, 2022

Met. Chrysostomos of Dodoni. Photo: Met. Chrysostomos of Dodoni. Photo:     

The Holy Synod of the Church of Greece was quick to condemn and distance itself from the scandalous statements made by one metropolitan on the topic of rape on live TV this morning.

Speaking on SKAI TV this morning, Metropolitan Chrysostomos of Dodoni emphasized that the Church doesn’t sanction abortion even when the child is the product of rape. The Holy Synod recently adopted a pro-life statement that is to be read in all churches on the feast of the Nativity of the Mother of God on September 8.

What the hierarch said next caused a strong reaction from the hosts, and later from Greek society.

“A woman doesn’t just sit still and get raped if she doesn’t want it. Let’s not go crazy now,” Met. Chrysostomos said. “She can’t get pregnant like that, she has to have participated... Both have to act in order for conception to take place,” he added.

In response to the journalists’ objections, the Metropolitan insisted on his stance.

The hierarch’s statement was immediately condemned by civil authorities (see also), and seven women have even brought a suit against him under the article for “Public incitement to violence or hatred.”

“YOU are abusing us RIGHT NOW, your words are worse than the rape itself. The preacher of love becomes a preacher of hate trying to gain some publicity,” the women said in a statement.

And the Holy Synod, in its own statement, said Met. Chrysostomos’ statements are “unacceptable, all the more so for an Orthodox clergyman, and seriously insulting to the human person, and especially women and rape victims.”

The Synod emphasizes that the Metropolitan attended the broadcast only on his own behalf, not as a representative of the Synod.

The hierarch’s statements tarnish the good work of the Church both at the Synodal level and through its dioceses and charitable bodies to help abused women, the Synod states.

“Treating women as equal to men without exception and protecting them against all forms of abuse constitute the official position and attitude of the Church of Greece. Any opinion of a cleric, regardless of the degree of ordination, that deviates from the above positions of the Holy Synod, in no way represent the Church of Greece,” the Synodal statement concludes.

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Constantine9/12/2022 4:27 am
The metropolitan is correct, a certain degree of arousal must occur for conception to take place. As vulgar as this may be, it's simply a biological fact.
Joseph A.9/5/2022 6:52 am
"YOU are abusing us RIGHT NOW, your words are worse than the rape itself." Measured, thoughtful, and objective, just like the metropolitan.
anonsayswhat9/4/2022 2:29 am
For the current sensitive generation that is easily triggered and provoked, this statement is outrageous. The truth is that in most cases of rape, the Metropolitan is correct here.
Joseph Donnely9/3/2022 9:00 pm
That's a pretty embarrassing comment there, Benjamin. Women want to be rape? Rape never results in conception unless the woman willingly participates? Get real.
Maximus9/3/2022 8:33 pm
Benjamin, first of all, at least as far as I know, before these news, the latest instance the Greek synod condemned something was Elpidophoros’ “gay baptism”. The Greek synod has its problems, but in many regards, they are an important force in Greek society on behalf of traditional Orthodoxy. Second of all, how in the world is the Metropolitan correct in his take? Rape is, by definition, a coerced, forceful act of sex. Women, most of the times, are not able to offer effective resistance to the male’s perpetrator due to their inferior physical strength. If they try, they will be either killed or severely harmed in the process. This is not a “liberal” position, it is, rather, just a description of how rape works. The Metropolitan’s position just poison the wells in terms of being against abortion even in rape cases. There are good and bad arguments against abortions related to rape. The Metropolitan’s is a bad one. It is never the victim’s fault. Even if you feel like pointing out what the victim was wearing or something else, any of this is much more a consequence of an anti-Christian culture in terms of sexuality, which includes the view of perceiving women as sexual objects, than merely an individual choice of the victim. Ultimately, the Metropolitan’s take does not help, and merely serve to portray the Church as being against women that get raped, instead of being both for them and the persons that may be conceived in these horrendous acts.
Benjamin9/2/2022 8:33 pm
As soon as I read that the Greek church condemned something, I pretty much knee-jerked “well than the Greek church is probably taking up the liberal position on the issue and whoever they’re upset with is probably in the right, even if it’s not politically correct to say so” before even reading what was said. Turns out my intuition was correct
Theodoros9/2/2022 7:38 pm
The stupidity of the remarks by this Metropolitan is not only insensitive to rape victims, but they are going to be used to discredit the pro life cause. This bishop I believe also told visiting Russian bishops that he sided with Constantinople in Ukraine because Patriarch Bartholomew is a fellow Greek. This bishop needs to be retired with a few others and the Church of Greece needs to elect better bishops. Good for the Greek synod for taking a stance against abortion. Unfortunately the secular left in Greece will move to associate the whole Church with the stupid comments of one bishop.
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