Athens, December 1, 2013
Metropolitan Nicholas of Fthiotida, one of leading Hierarchs of the Church of Greece, has spoken about a new bill of the Greek government banning the reading of certain "offensive" stories from the Gospel, introducing responsibility for patriotism, and legalizing same-sex "marriages".
The Greek government in all probability is unhesitatingly continuing the preparation of the new "anti-racist" bill, which may soon became a federal law, reports AgionOros.ru with the reference to Romphea.
It will include consent to "free relationships", which will extend to same-sex unions, removal from the Holy Week services of passages potentially "offensive" to Jews, and declare inadmissible any demonstration by Greeks of "excessive" patriotism, lest they offend the sensibility of non-Greeks. One of leading Hierarchs of the Church of Greece, Metropolitan Nicholas of Fthiotida, commenting on the bill, is not concealing his indignation over far-reaching plans of its developers.
"Are we living in the time of Sodom and Gomorrah?" he says.
Regarding the consent to "free relationships", the Hierarch noted, "The introduction of bills opposed to the spirit of the Gospel, like the consent to "free relationships", is a perverted and at the same time immoral and anti-Christian action. All of us must draw a conclusion. Are we living in the time of Sodom and Gomorrah? It is necessary to protect our people from lawlessness, so that they may preserve the ideas of justice, freedom, independence, and love. You cannot, after all, level everything in the world".
"What kind of people are these who want to revise the Bible?"
His Eminence Metropolitan Nicholas said regarding the possible censoring of the text of Holy Week services: "During Holy Week our priests in their churches will read the Gospel containing such words as: “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites, you strain at a gnat but swallow a camel", as well as other passages about Judas, etc. Should they really be removed? What kind of people are they who want to revise the Gospel? We are not haters of any people; we respect the Jewish people and all other peoples. Besides, the Jewish nation is the forerunner of Christianity. Our Lord was of Jewish origin, and the Jewish people of the Old Testament believed in One, True God. Nobody treats Jews with such respect as do we, Christians. But should the Gospel, the words of the Lord Himself, be changed solely for this reason? And who are these latter-day "mediators", wishing to preach the new "Gospel" to us? For what reasons is all this happening—for political ones, so that other people’s feelings might not be offended? The Gospel cannot be changed, and it is the same for Church services. The Church can adapt its approaches, but its meaning remains unchanged. And it will be the same now. Let them prepare thousands of bills; will they really imprison all Bishops, Patriarchs, priests, and monks? This is absurd."
"Greece is a courageous country, it has its own heroes, it struggled, it has its own national holidays, its own flag, and parades. Must we really cancel everything so that migrants may not be insulted?"
Since the bill also touches upon "protection" of the sensibilitites of those who might be insulted by a demonstration of the Greek people’s "excessive" patriotism, the Metropolitan has called upon the government to approach the preparation of bills reasonably and with a sense of harmony, otherwise Greece may simply be destroyed: "I think a similar bill already existed in 1979. What kind of pressure is exerted on the government that it enacts such strange laws? But the people have their own criteria. How can such a law be passed if by following it Greeks have to be afraid to express their love for their motherland, simply because the feelings of other people—who had once enslaved Greece—will be ‘wounded’? I mean Turks. If we are afraid to cite the examples of our heroes because Muslim or Albanian children's feelings will be affected, then what will happen to our native country? We will destroy it! Bills like this one can, of course, protect someone... But don't these people know that Greece is a courageous country, it has its own heroes, it struggled, it has its own national holidays, its own flag, parades, as every country does? So must we really cancel everything so that migrants might not be insulted?"