Bishop Athanasios to REMAIN as Active Cleric & Community Leader
On the 14th January 2021, the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Thyateira announced the election of His Grace Bishop Athanasios of Tropaeou as the Metropolitan of Colognia - an Ecclesiastical Province in Asia Minor. The honour, though actioned by the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, was suggested and requested by Archbishop Nikitas.
This "promotion" was not requested by the Bishop nor was it discussed with him beforehand. The implications of this "paper" title, that has no real responsibility and is of no congregational relevance, are that Bishop Athanasios is stripped of his duties as Community Leader of the Greek Orthodox Communities - encompassing the Cathedral of St Mary, the Church of St. Barnabas, the Sunday Schools and Greek School of St. Barnabas. He will be stripped of all of his leadership tasks and authorities. He will not be allowed to participate in Church Services and Liturgies without express permission from Archbishop Nikitas. Furthermore, he will be required to leave his home of almost quarter of a century and the offices from where he has served and supported the local community and represented the Archdiocese for over thirty years.
The Bishop is still of sound health and mind, and has served the community faultlessly and without incident for over three decades. Together with his uncle, the much loved and respected late Archbishop Gregorios, they created and established the Greek Orthodox Community in North London - the largest in the UK.
Though the Bishop is not resistant to change and new blood in our community, we must respect and safeguard the legacy both Clerics have left behind.
Bishop Athanasios should be allowed to REMAIN as Community Leader. He should be allowed to lead and participate in services and liturgies WITHOUT requiring permission. He should be allowed to REMAIN in his residence and in his offices for as long as he should so choose. We must acknowledge what this man has done and the community and show him the most amount of RESPECT.
It appears that the actions of the Archdiocese have not displayed such respect. We as a community must insist and demand in the best interests of our community that Bishop Athanasios REMAINS active and in charge for as long as he should wish and is able to carry out his duties.
We demand upon the Archdiocese to make these assurances in public to the community that has supported the Church, the Archdiocese and the Patriarchate since its inception.
PLEASE SIGN THIS PETITION IN AGREEMENT WITH THESE DEMANDS.
PLEASE ALSO DISTRIBUTE TO FRIENDS & FAMILY & ALL OTHER COMMUNITY MEMBERS & BEYOND.