Turkey complied with a European Court of Human Rights ruling on Monday and returned a 19th-century orphanage to the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Istanbul, the center of Orthodox Christianity around the world. The move is likely to appease the European Union which also calls on the Turkish government to reopen a Greek Orthodox seminary and return dozens of other properties such as school buildings and churches seized from Jewish and Christian foundations decades ago.
Regional Archons encouraged to attend prayer service at Ground Zero, Dec 5, eve of feast day of St. Nicholas1. December 2010 - 13:24
On Sunday, December 5th, at 2:00 PM, on the eve of the Feast Day of St. Nicholas, Archbishop Demetrios will lead a special prayer service at Ground Zero (Liberty and Greenwich Streets). On this solemn day, we will join the parishioners of St. Nicholas, not simply in observing the Feast Day of the Wonderworking Saint and the Name Day of the church, but we will intensify our prayers and supplications that the church dedicated to him, the only house of worship destroyed on 9/11, be re-built at Ground Zero, and soon!
Turkey returned the title deed for a Greek boys' orphanage to the head of the Greek Orthodox church today, complying with an order from the European Court of Human Rights.
The deed for the orphanage on the island of Heybeliada near Istanbul was given to Cem Murat Sofuoglu, a lawyer for the Istanbul-based patriarchate, the state-run Anatolia news agency reported.
- Your Eminence, I should first welcome you to Greece. It is very big honor for all of us that you are on Rhodes Island although it is not an official visit. What brings you here?
- Here, in Rhodes currently there is an Orthodox - Catholic Forum which brings together participants from all European Orthodox Churches as well as from various Churches and Organizations in Europe. The idea of the creation of this Forum initially belongs to Cardinal Erdo of Budapest and to me. The idea is that we should informally discuss various questions of common interest. The first Forum, which took place in Trento (Italy) two years ago, discussed family issues such as marriage, procreation, abortion, the value of human life and so on. This meeting is dedicated to the relations between the church and the state in various European countries.