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 Issue 1, November the 22nd, 2004


  • Archbishop Christodoulos’ Letter to EU Leaders on the name Macedonia

  • “Greek Christian Monuments” in International Festival

  • The Eyes of Hope

  • Olivier Clement : An Orthodox Theologian Who Bridges East and West

  • Catholic and Russian Orthodox Theologians Collaborate to Promote Unity

  • Hungarian Court for the Second Time Rejected Claims of the Patriarchate of Constantinople

  • Serbia's patriarch welcomes rapprochement of Russian church

  • Archbishop Christodoulos’ Letter to EU Leaders on the name Macedonia
    Source : Athens News Agency

    Archbishop Christodoulos of Athens and All Greece expressed his concern about the world that is being formed with total demerit toward objectivity and truth in a letter addressed to EU heads of state and the heads of Christian Churches on the issue of the FYROM name.

    Archbishop Christodoulos stressed that the use of the name "Macedonia" by FYROM is more than a simple and innocent cultural misappropriation, pointing out that the cultural aspect of the issue is a permanent cause of passion stirring while he also referred to the occupation by Greece's neighbors of part of the Greek Macedonia during both World Wars.

    He also mentions that the history of southeastern Europe has been colored by the harboring of insatiable irredentism that often led to armed conflicts not limited to the area in question. Specifically on FYROM, he pointed out that irredentism appears at two levels, the Slav and the Albanian, and for this reason is regarded more explosive.

    Therefore, mentioned the Archbishop, the Greeks believe that the recognition of the neighboring to Greece FYROM under the name "Macedonia" does not serve any Balkan state because it raises the temperature on tension and suspicion in the region, while it appears to vindicate all those who build their history with stolen material and rewards all those who keep the spark of disorder and permanent instability burning in a crucial region for Europe and in times of constant tension.

    The Archbishop also reminded the support offered by Greece to FYROM since the first moment of the country's founding and the encouragement of bilateral cooperation.

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    “Greek Christian Monuments” in International Festival
    Source: Solidarity

    The documentary "Greek Christian Monuments " was selected to be included in the Docs for Sale program of the 17th International Documentary Festival of Amsterdam, 19-27 November, which constitutes the largest international event in the field of documentaries.

    The documentary presents the historical and cultural journey of the Church of Greece through her monuments, her iconography, as well as the continuity of Greek culture from antiquity until our days.

    The documentary was produced by the N.G.O. "Solidarity” of the Church of Greece, directed by the highly acclaimed Yannis Smaragdis in a scenario by Pan. Drakopoulos.

    The participation of "Solidarity” Development Organization in this international cultural event constitutes the first presence of the Church of Greece in such an event.

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    The Eyes of Hope
    Portraits of the first Greek immigrants at the Hellenic American Union
    Source: Cultureguide, abridged

    You visit a photography exhibition which consists of portraits that were taken in the beginning of the 20th century and suddenly you recognise your ancestors! This is exactly what happened during the display of "The Eyes of Hope" in San Fransisco. The exhibition, which includes portraits of Greek immigrants in the USA, is now hosted at Athens' Hellenic American Union, from November 18 to December 9.

    "The Eyes of Hope" is curated by journalist Maria Koufopoulou and organised by the Hellenic American Union.
    Hellenic American Union Athens, 22 Massalias St., Athens 10680 Telephone +30-210-3680000

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    Olivier Clement : An Orthodox Theologian Who Bridges East and West
    Source: Zenit, slightly editing

    French lay Orthodox theologian Olivier Clement, one of the standout promoters of East-West dialogue among Christians, is the object of two new books.

    Clement was born in France's Languedoc region, a land of Cathar roots and anti-Catholic prejudices. At age 20, he began a spiritual journey that led him briefly to Protestantism, which he considered too "dry," and too remote from the wonder of a "young pagan" before the splendor of nature and Mediterranean culture.

    His fascination with the East led him to discover Russian author Vladimir Lossky. In the latter's essay on the Eastern Church's mystical theology (originally published as Essai sur la theologie mystique de l'Église d'Orient. Paris, 1944), Clement discovered the mystery of the Trinity and the Fathers of the Church. (See In Memoriam of Vladimir Lossky by the late protopresbyter Alexander Schmemann) Clement is the author of more than 30 books. The Pope asked him to write the texts for meditation for the 1998 Good Friday Via Crucis held in Rome's Colosseum.

    "Memories of Hope" ("Memoires d'esperance"), published by Desclee de Brouwer presents a series of interviews with Jean-Claude Noyer in which Clement proposes in a hopeful manner the encounter with Christ and the spiritual experience. According to Jean-Claude Noyer, Clement proposes "an intelligent, profound and interiorly renewed Christianity."

    The interviewer speaks to the theologian about topics such as love, mission, the Jesus Prayer, and explains his vision of the "four witnesses of the Gospel: Patriarch Athenagoras; Mother Marie Skobtsov; Father Sophrony and John Paul II." Patriarch Athenagoras of Constantinople, together with Paul VI, had a key role in ecumenical dialogue. Noyer recounts his meetings with the theologian on Friday afternoons in his Paris apartment, and describes him as "a stroller between two shores, a man of dialogue and unity."

    The other book that has just came out is "Olivier Clement: His Spiritual and Theological Journey" ("Olivier Clement, son Itineraire Spirituel et Theologique") published by Editions Anne Sigier.

    The work, by Franck Damour, highlights how Clement's theology is "that of Christianity of the Resurrection which opens us to the earth, to the body and to beauty." The book recounts Clement's life, and his journey from atheism to a theology marked by the Transfiguration.

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    Catholic and Russian Orthodox Theologians Collaborate to Promote Unity

    Collaboration between Catholic and Russian Orthodox churches in theological publications is advancing dialogue towards unity, according to Metropolitan Philaret of the Russian Orthodox Church.

    "The 100 Books of Theology of the 20th Century" was presented in Rome last week at Communion and Liberation’s International Center with the participation of Metropolitan Philaret, also president of the Synodal Theological Commission of the Russian Orthodox Church. The initiative is the result of the work conducted by Metropolitan Philaret, the Moscow's Library of the Spirit Cultural Center and the Christian Russia Foundation.

    "The rebirth and full development of the theological traditions will be impossible if our theologians do not know fully the evolution and fruits of Christian thought of the last century, period in which the possibilities of our theological school were substantially limited by the external circumstances," said Metropolitan Philaret.

    To complete the collection the commission involved the best known Orthodox experts of different subjects representing the most outstanding centers of study of Russia, such as the theological academies of Moscow and St. Petersburg, the St. Tikhon Institute and the Orthodox Encyclopedia.

    On the Catholic side, the project enjoys the patronage of Cardinal Angelo Scola, patriarch of Venice; Cardinal Christoph Schoenborn, archbishop of Vienna; and Archbishop Francisco Martínez of Granada, Spain.

    The Library of the Spirit Cultural Center was founded in Moscow in 1993, at the initiative of the Christian Russia Foundation, Caritas Moscow and the Orthodox Theological Faculty of Minsk. Its activity has an ecumenical dimension and creates conditions for cultural and pastoral exchange among the different confessions. The center is a point of reference for Christian publishing houses in Russia. It publishes and distributes books that are sent to the most remote regions of Russia, and promotes numerous cultural initiatives.

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    Hungarian Court for the Second Time Rejected Claims of the Patriarchate of Constantinople
    Source: Europaica, edited

    On 13 October took place a hearing of the Arbitration Court of Budapest concerning the case of the ownership of the Dormition Cathedral in Budapest. The plaintiff was the Hungarian Exarchate of the Patriarchate of Constantinople, while the defendant was the Hungarian diocese of the Moscow Patriarchate. The Arbitration Court, which is a court of second instance, examined the appeal submitted by the Hungarian Exarchate of the Constantinople Patriarchate after the Capital Court of Budapest, at its hearing on 17 May 2004, rejected its right to file a lawsuit, thus recognizing the claims to the Dormition Cathedral as unfounded. The Arbitration Court gave its verdict, according to which the decision of the Capital Court was left without changes.

    So, two Orthodox Patriarchates goes to law one against the other. For real estate reasons. This is sorrowful news for every Christian.

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    Serbia's patriarch welcomes rapprochement of Russian church
    Source: Interfax

    The Serbian Orthodox Church welcomes the rapprochement of the Russian Church Abroad and the Moscow Patriarchy, Patriarch Pavle of Serbia, told reporters during his visit to Moscow .

    "The Serbian Church has been calling recently on senior officials of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad to come back and embrace the Mother Church," he said.

    After the 1917 revolution in Russian, the Serbian Church helped Russians who sought refuge in Serbia, most of whom moved to Western Europe, America and Australia after World War II, Patriarch Pavle said.

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