Orthodox Outlet for Dogmatic Enquiries Essays about Orthodoxy


The passing of the Archbishop of Athens and All Greece Christodoulos


Source: http://www.in.gr/news/article.asp?lngEntityID=867804&lngDtrID=244

We are re-publishing the notice of the Archbishop Christodoulos’ passing, as announced in the website http://www.in.gr/, posted on the 28th of January 2008, with information taken from the Athens News Bureau:

Mourning throughout the land
Archbishop Christodoulos has passed away

Archbishop Christodoulos fought bravely to the end.


At 5.15am, daybreak of Monday morning the blessed Archbishop of Athens and All Greece Christodoulos passed away, following the tortuous battle for his life that he had been fighting during the past seven months, with valor and exemplary spiritual strength.

The blessed Archbishop passed away in the privacy of his home, as his doctors had respected his wish to not be transferred to the hospital, whatever the developments to his condition.

At 7.15am, the mortal remains of the Archbishop were transferred from his residence to the Athens Popular Hospital for the necessary post-mortem procedures, and will afterwards be transferred to the chapel of the Athens Metropolitan Cathedral, where a supplication will be chanted.

The body of the Archbishop will remain in the Athens Cathedral for a three-day period, to receive the last respects of the public.  The funeral will take place on the fourth day, at the 1st Athens Cemetery, with honors befitting a Head of State.

At noon, 2.00pm, the Perpetual Holy Synod will be convening, with the Metropolitan Seraphim of Karysteia presiding, given that the two senior Metropolitans of Langada and Kilkisia are both ill.

Prime Minister Kostas Karamanlis stated the following:  “I am certain that I am interpreting the sentiments of all Hellenes, when expressing my grief over the passing of the Blessed Archbishop Christodoulos – the enlightened Hierarch, who, with his poemantic labors, brought the Church closer to society and to contemporary problems; closer to young people and their concerns; the religious leader who fortified the role of Orthodoxy in the world.

The directness of his words, his simplicity, his fighting spirit, his love for Hellas, all constitute valuable lessons for the Christian faithful of the Church.  The valor and the patience that he displayed during the difficult hours of his personal battle have touched the hearts of everyone”, the Prime Minister concluded.

Life history

The Archbishop of Athens and All Greece Christodoulos was born in Xanthi in 1939. 

In 1962 he received his Law Degree and in 1967 his Theology Degree.

He was tonsured as Deacon in 1961 and as Presbyter in 1965. For nine years, he served as the sermon-preacher and spiritual administrator of the Holy Church of the Passing of the Theotokos in Palaion Faleron, and for seven years as Secretary of the Holy Synod.

He was elected Metropolitan of Demetrias in 1974.  He participated in many ecclesiastic missions abroad. In 1998 he was elected Archbishop of Athens and All Greece.

He authored a significant number of scientific and educational texts.  He wrote articles for the ecclesiastic Press as well as for newspapers.

Among the publications that stand out are his books «Hellenism Proselyte - The transition from Antiquity to Christianity», where he interprets how Christianity succeeded in prevailing and proselytizing Gentiles, and «The Soul of Europe».

Under his leadership, the Social work of the Church was also promoted; in the reinforcement of existing organizations as well as the founding of new ones, catering to fields such as bioethics, care for drug addicts, supporting refugees, abused women, unmarried mothers, victims of trafficking…

His poemantic service during the leadership of the Church was also accompanied by the founding of a network of child-care stations in support of the working mother; the methodical support of large families, the founding of the non-profit organization “SOLIDARITY” for missions providing aid to countries of the developing world and to areas stricken by natural disasters.

He was a Doctor of Theology; he spoke French and English and was a connoisseur of Italian and German.


D.O.L. Newsroom

Translation by A.N.

Article published in English on: 31-1-2008.

Last update: 31-1-2008.