Greek Star -- August 26, 1904Progress of the Greek Community in Chicago Is Hampered by the Holy Church of Greece Is the Church Playing Politics? What Is Behind the Scene of the Church's Flood of Evils? (Editorial)
Upon the instigation of Dr. Papaeliou, president of the Chicago Greek community, the Holy Synod of Greece has recalled the Reverend Cyril Georgiadis, who because of his fatherly activities has become popular and beloved among the population of "Little Greece" in Chicago. His interest and his energy in building up the community are outstanding characteristics of his ecclesiastical incumbency. But as a true Hierarch, he took no orders from the president of the community, who in addition to other irregularities has refused to account for the community's funds.2
When Dr. Gregory Papaeliou was interviewed by this paper in regard to an affidavit sent to the Holy Synod of Greece and supposedly authorized by the constituent members of the Greek community of Chicago, he very glibly assured us that the affidavit contained an appeal to the Holy Synod for an additional priest because the expansion of the community had rendered too onerous the duties performed by the single priest in charge.
But as we have been informed by the Greek Consulate-General, the purported affidavit was a request that the Reverend Father Georgiadis be recalled, among other unfounded charges alleging as reasons that Father Georgiadis divided the community and neglected his ecclesiastical duties.
The Holy Synod of Greece referred the affidavit to the Greek Consul of Chicago for verification of the charges therein contained. The Consul -General of Greece properly and discreetly investigated the allegations against the priest, reporting promptly that the charges were not only fantastic and absolutely unwarranted, but that the signatures of the board of directors, who signed the affidavit, were obtained by the president 3through deception and guile. The Holy Synod, confronted with the Greek Consul's official denial of the charges, threw the affidavit in the waste-basket.
The imperial and wily president of the community was not to be baffled by such a defeat. He turned his impish mind to other channels of activity in order to accomplish his purpose. The pious and beloved Greek priest must be recalled if he (Dr. Papaeliou) was to dominate the affairs of the community, and by unscrupulous methods he appointed two Greeks of Athens to represent the Chicago Greek community before Church and State: Mr. Krokidas, a member of the Parliament, and Mr. Kanellides, publisher of the Times.
The result of Dr. Papaeliou's appointment of the two above-mentioned individuals to represent the Greek community of Chicago before Church and State is that the Reverend Cyril Georgiadis met with the same fate as his predecessor of a year ago, the Reverend Father Mavrokordatos, who also was recalled by instigation of the same president and for the same purpose.4
Is it proper to permit one's self to think that the Holy Synod of Greece is playing politics? Has the corruption of politics penetrated the invisible stronghold of the Church?
As things stand to-day, the answer is emphatically yes. The stately and immaculate "chiton" of the Church is somehow stained with spots of political corruption.
The progressing and rapidly increasing "Little Greece" of Chicago, instead of being aided and promoted by Mother-Church, is divided, handicapped, hampered, and shackled by the decisions of the Holy Synod of Greece.
The Holy Synod of Greece has within a year recalled two faithful servants of the Church from the Chicago Greek community upon the instigation of Dr. Papaeliou, autocratic president of the community, because they both refused to be dominated by the wily doctor.5
Petitions and affidavits sent to the Holy Synod by the community's board of directors were not taken under consideration. Official documents of the Chicago Greek Consulate disproving the president's accusations against the priests were heeded not at all by the Holy Synod. The exposure by the Greek press of Chicago of Dr. Papaeliou's being short in the community's accounts had no effect upon the Synod. And now the imminent division of the community is not at all alarming to those who compose that body.
What is behind this unusual phenomenon? Why should the Chicago Greek community be represented in Greece by two individuals whose reputation and character are not above suspicion? Why does the Synod pursue a policy of disintegration? Why are the Greeks of Chicago and elsewhere interfered with in their establishment? Is the Synod Greek Orthodox? Where are the interest and the love of the Church toward the Greeks of America, who are struggling and striving to remain faithful to the Greek Orthodox religion? Is the Church supposed to pacify or to disturb the welfare and progress of the communities?6
The answers to all these questions lies with the Holy Synod itself, and before it is too late to undo what is already done, we respectfully suggest to those who compose that supposedly holy corporation to take immediate steps to amend their behavior and correct the evil conditions prevailing in the Church throughout the Greek communities of America.
P. S. Lambros.
III C, III H, IV
Secondary listingsGreek // Assimilation > Relations with Homeland (III H) ?
Greek // Representative Individuals (IV) ?
Your search criteria returned no results.