Message From +Bishop Christodoulos:News and Events at the Cathedral and other news...
Our annual trip to the South Street Seaport to hear the Big Apple Chorus Christmas Concert has been rescheduled for this Sunday. We were originally scheduled to go this Friday, but the weather forecast for that day looks bleak. Instead we will leave from the Cathedral of Saint Markella on Sunday after Divine Liturgy. The concert begins at 3:00 PM. If you need a seat in one of our church vans, let me know now. We should be back in Astoria by 7:00 PM at the latest.
The next Homeless Clothing Run is this Tuesday, December 27th. We leave from the Cathedral at 8:00 PM.
MENORAHS PERMITTED IN NYC PUBLIC SCHOOLS, BUT NATIVITY SCENES ARE NOT
So America's highest court declined to review the 2 to 1 ruling of the United States Supreme Court in Skoros that has allowed New York City to ban Nativity scenes in public school Christmas displays, while permitting a Jewish menorah, a Muslim star and crescent and a Christmas tree. New York City defended the policy by arguing that the Jewish and Islamic symbols, displayed on the Jewish holiday of Chanukah and the Muslim commemoration of Ramadan, were "secular" symbols, while the nativity scene was "purely religious." [Note: New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, now pondering a race for the presidency as a third-party candidate, vigorously supports this anti-Christian display policy.]
ESPHIGMENOU MONKS ATTACKED, HOSPITALIZED
December 20, 2006
Mount Athos, Greece - In another brutal an unprovoked attack, members of the Patriarch Bartholomew's brotherhood launched a pre-dawn assault on the Esphigmenou building in Karyes, breaking down the door with sledge hammers, and assaulting the Esphigmenou monks inside, sending four to the hospital. Fathers Cleopas, Mardarios, Chrysostomos and Ambrosios were hospitalized at Polygero Hospital, 500 miles north of Athens, after having been attacked with crowbars by monks from Patriarch Bartholomew's brotherhood. According to the attending physician, Dr. Athanasios Papageorgiou, the most seriously injured monk, Fr. Ambrosios, has multiple bodily injuries and a broken skull.
The imposter monks who launched the attack, are under the spiritual authority of Patriarch Bartholomew in Istanbul, who recognizes these monks as his spiritual children and the monks that have been attacked, assaulted and sent to the hospital as "rebels" who need to return to the fold and obey his personal interpretation of the faith. The monks of the historical monastery of Esphigmenou, who were attacked by the Patriarch's monks, reject all violence as unchristian, and have requested dialogue with Patriarch Bartholomew to clarify his actions and teachings which are in conflict with the teachings of the Orthodox church. So far, Patriarch Bartholomew has ignored these requests for dialogue, preferring instead to persecute them by proxy, using the Greek police and his own sledge hammer wielding monks to do his work.
See the BBC report at the below site:
(Not surprisingly the BBC story is extremely biased against the Esphigmenou monks.)
If the violent attack with crow bars that has hospitalized several monks on Mount Athos has disturbed you... if you feel this is not such a good witness to the world of what Holy Orthodoxy is... if you were outraged.... if you are embarrassed by the behavior of these monks of the Holy Mountain... write to the man who inspired or possibly even requested this unGodly action:
The Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople, Bartholomew: Patriarchate@ec-patr.org
Christ be with you,