A huge slap in the face of both Pat. Bartholomew and AB Elpidophoros, who refused to take a stand on such a central issue as gay marriage!! Will they now come out and reaffirm the faith? Or will they declare themselves officially heretics? If they do not take a stand, the whole Orthodox World will side with the Moscow Patriarchate, whose mandates on this issue are very clear: “Everyone is welcome in our Churches, but homosexuality is a sin, and it needs to be viewed as such.”

By Nick Stamatakis

In a scathing letter to Pat. Bartholomew, their canonical Bishop, ALL twenty monasteries of Mt.Athos requested after a formal meeting of their council (“Epistasia”)  the Patriarch to take a stand on the AB Elpidophoros’ act of “gay baptism.” This can be interpreted as a request to keep the Archbishop out of Athos, as the latter planned a visit there during the last part of January. TNH published the letter, and we are posting it at the end of this post.

The reasoning of the letter focuses exclusively on the events around the events of the baptism of the children of the gay couple (Boussis- Dundas – the first is the son of a wealthy Greek Chicago family) in July 2022 in Glyfaga, Athens, Greece. In the aftermath of this baptism, Mt.Athos issued its first rebuke against Elpidophoros (reported by Helleniscope here).  Other statements by Mt. Athos followed this first reaction against gay marriage: On December 19, 2023, the council of monasteries issued an official statement opposing a law establishing gay marriage (link here).

The recent letter to Pat. Bartholomew (below) saw massive publicity today in Greece’s religious and political media and globally and is bound to cause an uproar against the Patriarchate.  So far, I have seen no one emphasizing that this letter may be superficially viewed as a rebuke of Elpidophoros, but it is also a call to the Patriarch to take a stand on gay marriage. For months and months on end, Pat. Bartholomew “plays deaf,” refusing to reaffirm the faith.  Well, after this Mt.Athos letter, he will have to issue a statement, or he will have to pay a considerable price: The whole Orthodox world will side with the Moscow Patriarchate, whose mandates are pretty clear on gay marriage: “Everyone is welcome in our Churches, but homosexuality / gay marriage is a sin, and it needs to be viewed as such.”

Elpidophoros had plans to visit Thessaloniki, perform some rituals there, and behave like a king, followed by an armada of limousines throughout the city and elsewhere, ending up in Mt.Athos.  Now he has an egg on his face as his trip is marked already as a massive rejection by the true Orthodox center of Greece and global Orthodoxy, Mt.Athos.  Let me remind you here that President Putin has visited Athos repeatedly, officially and unofficially, and is viewed favorably by most monks – and his favorability ratings in Greece regularly exceed 70%.  Almost all of the monasteries have also refused to receive the Ukrainian schismatics and accept the autocephaly granted by Pat. Bartholomew.

BELOW, YOU CAN READ THE LETTER IN ITS ORIGINAL GREEK FORM AND IN ENGLISH (in many parts an attempt to translate its archaic Greek)

«Καρυαί τη 15η/28η Δεκεμβρίου 2023

Τη Αυτού Θειοτάτη Παναγιότητι

Τω Οικουμενικώ Πατριάρχη

Κυρίω κω ΒΑΡΘΟΛΟΜΑΙΩ

Πανσεβάστω Πατρί ημών και Δεσπότη

Εις Φανάριον

Παναγιώτατε Πάτερ και Δέσποτα,

Διά του παρόντος ιεροκοινοσφραγίστου ημών γράμματος προαγόμεθα όπως εξ’ αφορμής της επικειμένης επισκέψεως του Σεβασμιοτάτου Αρχιεπισκόπου Αμερικής κ. Ελπιδοφόρου εις την Αγιώνυμον Πολιτείαν, καταθέσωμεν ενώπιον της Υμετέρας Παναγιότητος τον προβληματισμόν της καθ’ ημάς Ιεράς Κοινότητος αναφορικώς εις τα επισυμβάντα κατά τη διάρκεια της τελέσως του μυστηρίου της βαπτίσεως παιδιών ‘ομοφύλου ζεύγους’, το οποίον έλαβεν χώραν εις τον Ιερόν Ναόν της Παναγίας Φανερωμένης εις Βουλιαγμένην.

Μετά λύπης διαπιστώνομεν ότι , μέσω των δημοσιευθέντων φωτογραφιών του Αρχιεπισκόπου Αμερικής, μετά το πέρας του μυστηρίου, εδημιουργήθη λανθασμένη εντύπωσις σχετικώς με την αποδοχήν υπό της Εκκλησίας του μυστηρίου του γάμου εξ ατόμων του ιδίου φύλου, μήνυμα αντίθετον προς τα δόγματα και την διδασκαλίαν της Ορθοδόξου Εκκλησίας. Το γεγονός τούτο, απάδον τη ευαγγελική διδασκαλία, προκαλεί τον έντονον προβληματισμόν της καθ’ ημάς Ιεράς Κοινότητος.

Οθεν, Παναγιώτατε, παρακαλούμεν υιικώς, όπως κλίνητε ευήκοον ους εις την ανησυχίαν ημών επί του εξαιρετικώς ευαισθήτου θέματος, το οποίον αφορά εις την ακεραιότητα της ημετέρας πίστεως και των ορθοδόξων παραδόσεων.

Επί δε τούτοις, εμπεπιστευμένοι τη Υμετέρα πεπνυμένη κρίσει εξαιτούμενθα τας Υμετέρας Πατρικάς ευχάς επί ταις εορταίς του Αγίου Δωδεκαημέρου και διατελούμεν εν τω μέλλοντι Κυρίω βαπτισθήναι μεθ’ υιικής αφοσιώσεως κατασπαζόμενοι την σεπτήν Υμετέραν Δεξιάν μετά βαθυτάτου σεβασμού.

Απαντες οι εν τη κοινή Συνάξει Αντιπρόσωποι και Προϊστάμενοι των είκοσιν Ιερών Μονών του Αγίου Ορους Αθω».

============

Karyes, on December 15/28, 2023 (Note: Mt.Athos follows the old calendar)

To His All Holiness

The Ecumenical Patriarch

Kyrion Bartholomew

Reverend our Father and Lord

In Fanarion

 

Most Holy Father and Despot,

By means of this letter under our holy communal seal, we proceed, on the occasion of the upcoming visit of the Most Reverend Archbishop of America, Mr. Elpidophoros, to the State of Mt.Athos, to submit before the Your All Holiness the concern of our Holy Community concerning the events during the rite of the sacrament of the baptism of children of a ‘same-sex couple’, which took place in the Holy Church of Panagia Faneromeni in Vouliagmeni.

We regret to note that, through the published photos of the Archbishop of America, after the end of the sacrament, a wrong impression was created regarding the acceptance by the Church of the sacrament of same-sex marriage, a message contrary to the doctrines and teachings of the Orthodox Church. This fact, contrary to the evangelical teaching, provokes the intense reflection of our Holy Community.

Therefore, Your Holiness, we beg you filially, as you lend a listening ear to our concern on the sensible subject, which concerns the integrity of our faith and Orthodox traditions.

Nevertheless, we trust your wise judgment, asking for your fatherly blessings on the feasts of the Holy Twelve Days, and we kiss your right hand with profound respect.

The representatives and heads of the twenty Holy Monasteries of Athos Mount Athos are in the joint meeting.

15 COMMENTS

  1. The stance of the holy mountain on this issue is a welcome development. It is unfortunate that the Athonites did not show such leadership on the matter of the Ukrainian Church. The ruling council on Athos allowed each Monastery to do as it wished on the Ukrainian issue.
    The holy mountain needs to
    Stand against both the Archbishop and the Patriarch. This means unequivocally standing against gay marriage and taking an official position on Ukraine.
    The holy mountain should condemn the persecution of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church and the uncanonical claims of Patriarch Bartholomew.
    Some abbots on Athos have received the fake bishops of Ukraine. All Monasteries should declare the synod of Metropolitan Onuphry the only canonical one in Ukraine and should ban all non canonical bishops. The fraud Dimenko and his associates have no more business on Athos than Archbishop Elpidophoros does.
    The Greek Orthodox world needs a full house cleaning.

    • Well said Theodoros… and I concur , however, I should remind you that the perpetrators of the Attacks on the Ukrainian Orthodox Church remain free …and that is former ambassador to Ukraine and Greece , and now State Department “Energy” Czar. Geoffrey Pyatt..who not only with Jewish Zionist State department deputy coordinated the destabilzation of the People of Ukraine in 2014, but with Bartholomew the destabilization of the Religious Orthodox Order , and also forced Greece to give up the Macedonian Name and extort cooperation in getting the Republic of North Macedonia into Nato led U.S and provide another base for U.S empire ! As Helleniscope has tracked this mans crimes against humanity , and his visits to Mt.Athos to extort their cooperation in supporting human rights violations against the Ukrainian Orthodox church under the approve jurisdiction of the church of Moscow , and was rejected , he and every member of the U.S State Department and government including the President of the United States … should be banned from ever entering the Mount of Mount Athos , and for that matter , ever entering the Church of the Nativity , the birthplace of Christ in Bethlehem for being the killer of children in Ukraine, Syria, Iraq, libya, Palestine , Venezuela , Cuba , Yemen, etc etc ! Today, the Self proclaimed Zionist and Jewish Zionist Biden and Blinken and Self proclaimed Fascist “Policemen of the World” bit just the clearing house for Organized Crime Syndicate of the notorious Jewish Crime family famously known as “Murderers Inc” to break international and domestic laws of the world ..declared that their is no “Genocide” going on by Israel, while the Internationa community is already filling charges fo War Crimes, Genocide and Crimes against humanity against Netanyahue , Biden and Blinken with the International Criminal Court at the Hague!
      But of course , what do you expect the Crime Syndicate leaders of Jewish Zionist U.S regime say… when they are on the hook for all the Crimes committed by Zelensky and Netanyahue!

  2. Bravo to holy monks of Athos!
    What a wonderful way to start a new blessed year ~
    hopefully this reaches many faithful and the Orthodox clergy who might reflect on how inappropriate a choice for Archbishop Elpi is.
    Sigh.

  3. The GOA issued a formal statement today via email that the Archbishop will be visiting Mt. Athos, serving the hierarchical Liturgy at the Monastery of Xenophontos and attending another Hierarchical liturgy at the Monastery of Philotheou. The info is as follows:

    “ His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros of America will be visiting Mount Athos on the occasion of the Feast of Epiphany accompanied by forty pilgrims from the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America.

    The pilgrimage will begin on January 18, 2024 at the Holy Monastery of Xenophontos, where His Eminence will officiate at the vigil and the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy for the Feast Day of the Epiphany as well as the blessing of the waters on January 19.

    On Saturday, January 20, the Archbishop and his accompanying pilgrims will visit the Holy Monastery of Philotheou. This is the historic parent monastery where Geronda Ephraim served prior to coming to the United States and establishing new monasteries all around the country.

    On January 21, the Archbishop will attend the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy at the Holy Monastery of Philotheou. On the same day, the Archbishop and the pilgrims will visit the Holy Monastery of Pantokrator, where they will stay overnight.”

    • GOA can issue all the statements they want. His trip to Greece is ruined before it started. Now Bartholomew will have to get involved and fix the situation – likely by removing Elpidophoros. Also please read whay I just posted: Mitsotakis postponed legilation for gay marriage!!

  4. Is Monastery on Mount Athos being hamstrung allowing Elpidoforos to come?

    How does it work if letter was sent to Patriarch declaring Elps is not welcomed by majority of monks??

    • I will write later on today… Elpi will likely visit the two or three monasteries that are tightly controlled by Bartholomew (out of 20). But he will not be welcomed (I don’t think) by the whole community as it is usual. And he will not visit Vatopedi – the most important of all monasteries. Above all he will not take photos in Mt. Athos and start a PR campaign in the US trying to convince all that “Mt.Athos approves his heretic policies”… In my opinion an Archbishop who has the overwhelming majority of the community against him, including most of the press, he has no place to stand and he will have to leave soon. Especially now that Athos put Bartholomew on the spot and he will have to finally take action on the issue of gay marriage.

  5. The monk’s letter doesn’t say anything at all about Archbishop Elpidophoros being unwelcome. The monks are only stating their concern about a “wrong impression” made by the media through their “published photos” and headlines. Guess who published such nonsense? Well, it wasn’t the Greek Archdiocese.

    I see their letter more as an attack on the media sources that promoted the false idea of a “gay baptism”, when in reality there is no such thing. The monk’s letter even confirms this by stating that there was an actual baptism that occurred, and it wasn’t a “gay baptism”.

    • He was UNWELCOME – period. I will post Bartholomew’s letter later. Baptizing the kids is and was allowed. But blessing gay marriage directly or – as Elpidophoros did indirectly by the photos and the publicity – is despicable. I will post later – please stay tuned.

    • Archbishop Elpidophoros was given the opportunity to clarify his views and has stated he does not care about their private lives. When he asked the bishop of Glyfada for permission to baptize the children in his Metropolis he left out the fact that the “parents” are both men. This is profoundly dishonest.
      Add to this the two times he served liturgy in that Episcopal Cathedral in Ny known for its pro lgbt stances and pagan/rainbow flags there really is no question where the Archbishop stands on gay marriage.

    • Joseph…the Orthodox Church can’t baptize children that will be raised in a home that teaches non-Orthodox dogma. That’s been true since the beginning of time…check out how rigorous the Catechumen programs “used to be” centuries ago…

      As for interpreting the message of this letter, we have to look at things objectively. This is a formal letter. From all 20 monasteries of Mt. Athos. To the Patriarch. With expectation of wider publication (a.k.a. not private). It has to be diplomatic. However, 99% of such letters have historically been written in the form of “..your Holiness, we will gladly receive hierarch so-and-so…” It is really rare for a response like this to express any criticism of concerns (concerns about Elpi’s image, behavior & choices) to be signed by all 20 monastery representatives and sent back to a Patriarch. In short, whether the tone & message is explicit or implicit, the 20 monasteries got their point across in a very diplomatic manner….even if Elpi decides to show up, there won’t be any red carpets waiting for him…

  6. Gay Mafia Is Sick & Elpidoforos is paid big bucks thru his rich friends like mother of gay baptism Eleni Bousis!
    How unseemly…
    Archbishop Iakovos predicted this perverted zeitgeist

  7. The “crickets” are most likely coming from an unfortunate growing group of Greek Orthodox, who have family members in these alphabet-soup groups! They are probably maintaining their silence as a way to keep their families in the closet somehow. Still a fringe -not a majority- the polls in Greece and here- seem bloated, skewed, and falsely tilting toward the globalists’ not so genuine narratives.

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