Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew sums up visit with Greek ‘diaspora’ in America

Turkey, Nov. 10, 2009
Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew referred to the great progress made by the Greek Diaspora in statements he made upon his return from a two-week visit to the United States.

Addressing the faithful in the Church of the Taxiarchs in Bosporus, the Ecumenical Patriarch stated that the progress achieved by the Greek Community, its dedication to the Mother Church and the Ecumenical Patriarchate were evident everywhere he went, adding that the Greek-Americans enjoy the respect of the US authorities.

Bartholomew stated that he was received with great honors by the US leadership, the academic world and major institutions.

The Ecumenical Patriarch emphasized the comments made by US Vice President Joe Biden who underlined that the Ecumenical Patriarchate has been brave despite the insecurity surrounding it and the adverse conditions under which it performs its ecumenical mission and service, thus winning great respect and appreciation.

In a formal dinner hosted in the Ecumenical Patriarch’s honor, US Vice President Biden quoted the ancient Greek fabulist Aesop who said “It is easy to be brave from a safe distance,” and addressing Bartholomew stressed: “You have always been brave and never from a safe distance. You have stared down those who seek to erode the authority of the Church tirelessly, professing the Greek Orthodox way for millions of followers.”

Source: ANA-MPA


  1. I was struck by the following:

    1.”Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew referred to the great progress made by the Greek Diaspora” in statements he made upon his return from a two-week visit to the United States.

    2.”Ecumenical Patriarch stated that the progress achieved by the Greek Community, its dedication to the Mother Church and the Ecumenical Patriarchate were evident everywhere he went”.

    3.”Greek-Americans enjoy the respect of the US authorities”.

    A pastoral visit truly in keeping with the Lord’s command, “Feed my sheep — but only feed my Jewish ones”.

    I guess I’d rather be the Samaritan that was saved than the Pharisee that was …”.

    • Then I’m assuming that the Vice President can be forgiven the logical inconsistency of his commending the Ecumenical Patriarch for “tirelessly, professing the Greek Orthodox way for millions of followers.”

      • Aren’t we all Greek? Doesn’t Hellenism mean “universal?” Didnt’ the Chief Secretary tell us that this year?

        But then we wouldn’t be barbarians, and canon 28 wouldn’t apply.

        Never mind.

        • Isa: Be proud to be a barbarian. That word does not have two l’s after the first e.

          • Yeah. Phyletism:putting the Hell back into Hellenism.

          • Had to laugh…at the end of last week’s Orthros service “the Greeks and their beliefs” were specifically spelled out and anathematized…and that book (the one we use) is published by the GOA.

            They really should try reading this stuff.

            On the other hand, the patriarch made a very specific comment about being “Rhomai”…I think he said he preferred that term.

            Personally, I think we need a few more Germans to organize this faith.

            Best Regards

  2. George Michalopulos :

    I guess the high praise from a fool like Biden is the best he could have hoped for.

  3. Michael Bauman :

    “The Greek-Americans enjoy the respect of the American authorities” Is that becasue so many of the the elected Orthodox officials deny their faith and serve the world?

    When did it become an article of praise for Christians to enjoy the respect of anti-Chrisitan authorities, or worldly authorities of any type?

    Very sad.

  4. Michael Bauman :

    Dean, I know you’re being sarcastic, but if you can find me one Orthodox saint who was born in Germany and served in Germany I’ll be surprised. About the only way Germans make saints is by killing them and making marytrs.

    • I remember Fr Pat Reardon once said the same thing about the Turks.

      What nationality does the Turkish EP want the GOA bishops to take?

    • Michael, I hope you are NOT serious. Here are the German Orthodox Saints, many of whom are german born and not Martyred….(on a German site, of course)
      Joseph, German born Orthodox

      • Michael Bauman :

        Thank you Joseph, I’ve have looked, off and on, for years since I am of German descent. All of the saints I could find were born somewhere else and then went to Germany (many from England). I’ll take a look at it. My sister-in-law who is native Swiss did quite a study on it and found one or two as I remember. Of course my definition of German may be more restrictive than some.

        I’ll look at your link.

        • Michael,
          Bauman, I thought so 🙂
          I am Canadian, but frequenting a couple of German speaking Orthodox Forums. There is work in progress to list all the Orthodox German Saints and their shrines in Germany, Switzerland and Austria, of whom are quite a number. Many have beautiful shrines dedicated to them and are pilgimage sites for mainly Roman faithful, but recently there have been organized pilgrimages for the increasing native and immigrated Orthodox of Germany. A similar enterprise is in progress in the British Isles… Fr. Ilya Gotlinksy is planning a pilgrimage to the sites of Orthodox Saints in GB and Ireland next fall…

          • Joseph, there are many Orthodox saints who worked in Germany, who loved Germany and combated the paganism and Arianism that was so prevalent (Mother Walburga is a favorite of mine). She and her brother came from England. I am looking specifically for someone born and raised in Germany.

            Just as I think the elevation of Matuska Olga that Met. Jonah has promised will mean a great deal for the Church in America, so a saint that was specifically German would be a great thing. I’m not really counting the Swiss and Austrians either.

  5. Dean: “Rhomai” = “Romaioi” in Greek = “Roman” in English. Thanks for the heads up. Now Ravenna makes more sense.

    • The term “Roman” which some modern Greeks use and the context in which
      Patriarch Bartholomew was using it has nothing to do with recent
      meeting in Ravenna.

      The Byzantine Greeks referred to themselves as “Romans” being the
      successor state of the old Roman Empire and preserving their
      governmental institutions. The term as used by the Byzantine
      Greeks had a universal connotation. That is what I believe the
      Ecumenical Patriarch meant by referring to himself as “Rhomai”.


  6. The Green Patriarch says

    ”Greek-Americans enjoy the respect of the US authorities”.

    The EP should remember the words of St. Ignatius of Antioch who said “Christianity shows its greatness when it is hated by the world”

    • Andrew,

      I hate to bring up the same topic over again, but the reason why
      Greeks like myself maintain respect and devotion for the Ecumenical
      Patriarchate is because it has endured and reflected a Christianity
      that is in fact hated. This is an alternate side that contrasts
      sharply with the whole environmental agenda which has been on display


  7. Michael,
    Here is a list with names of Orthodox Saints in Germany…although some were foreign born, most are of German descent and born in Germany. The list is still far from complete… One can easily find their vitas through Google.

    Orthodoxe Heiligenleben

    Der hl. Abt Otmar
    Der hl. Gaudentius Bischof von Chur und Konstanz
    Der hl. Märt. Florian und 40 Gefährten von Lorch
    Der hl. Märt. Quirinus von Tegernsee
    Die Hl. Sarmannina
    Hl. Friulphus
    Die Hl. Äbtissin Lioba von Bischofsheim
    Der hl. Bischof Valentinianus von Passau
    Hl. Erhard von Regensburg
    Geistl. Märt. Aquilinus
    Die Hl. Jungfrau Hadeloga
    Hl. Abt Alto
    Der hl. Märtyrerbischof Blasius
    Der hl. Kastor von Trier
    Die Hl. Äbtissin Walburga von Eichstädt
    Der Heilige apostelgleiche Abtbischof Rupertus von
    Der hl. Eustasius
    Der ger. Märt. Trudpert vom Münstertal bei Freiburg im
    Der hl. Isidor von Brandenburg und Rostow
    Der geistliche Märtyrer Bonifacius, der Apostel der
    Die Geistlichen Märtyrer Bischof Kilian, der Priester
    Colomanus, und der Diakon Totnanus von Würzburg
    Der Hl. Abba Landelinus
    Der hl. Donatus von Münstereifel
    Der geistliche Willibaldus Bischof von Eichstädt
    Der hl. Prokopij von Lübeck, Wundertäter von Ustjug
    Der Hl. Winthir von Neuhausen in München
    Die Hl. Märt. Afra von Augsburg
    ihre Mutter Hilaria, und ihre Mägde Digna, Eunomia und
    Der hl. Abt und Bekenner Wigbertus
    Hl. Radegundis
    Die hl. Jungfrau Verena, zu Zurzach
    Die Jungfräuliche Märtyrerin Wolfsindis,”schnelle Helferin” von Reisbach.
    Der hl. Bischof Corbinianus von Freising
    Hl. Märt. Landelinus von Ettenheimmünster,
    Der geistliche Märt. Heimhrami, im Volksmund Emmeram,
    von Regensburg
    Der hl. Remedius von Tirol
    Der geistl. Märt. Dionysius in Regensburg
    Der Hl. Märt. Kassius von Köln
    Der hl. Lubentius von Cobern
    Der hl. Bischof Burcardus
    Der hl. Abba Wulfilaich der Säulensteher
    Der Hl. Wendelin von Trier
    Der hl. Bischof Willibrordus
    Der hl. Bischof Kunibert von Köln und Trier
    Bischof Virgil von Salzburg
    Hl. Witwe und Stifterin Bilhildis
    Der hl. Wunibaldus von Eichstädt
    Hl. Bernward von Hildesheim

  8. And if you want modern Orthodox Saints from Germany: New Martyr, Princess St. Elisabeth Alexandra Luise Alice von Hessen-Darmstadt und bei Rhein and her sister Tzarina St. Alexandra.

  9. George Michalopulos :

    For that matter, Tsar Nicholas was about 7/8th’s Teutonic (German, Danish, probably some Swedish).

  10. Here we go again! Nothing like having the children of the parish ready to promote the politics of the Green Patriarch.

    Check out the following article:

    Greek Orthodox: Utahns learning from ‘Green Patriarch’
    Bartholomew teaches rising generations to care for planet.

    By Peggy Fletcher Stack
    The Salt Lake Tribune
    Updated: 11/20/2009 11:59:47 AM MST

    The quotes that really get your attention are the following:

    “He is pretty cool,” Michael Zoumudakis said. “I like how he walks instead of taking cars all the time.”


    “I am so pleased that our patriarch is talking about the environment rather than controversial issues such as abortion or gay marriage,” Pilar Pappas said. “He could help unite people.”

  11. Michael Bauman :

    RE comment #1: Unless the Patriarch is really holy, he didn’t walk from
    Turkey and the jet he took has far more impact than all of the cars he could possibly take anywhere.

    RE comment #2: Of course, the gentleman ignores the controversy surrounding the anthrogenic impact on the bioshpere and climate. In any case, I guess it’s just too much to expect that Christians be controversial since the joys of the state are the joys of the Church, no?

    Seems as if we could be heading for an offical church and an authentic Church here in the U.S.

  12. Now wouldn’t that be something, Patriarch walks on Water…!
    Seems as if we could be heading for an offical church and an authentic Church here in the U.S. I think you’re on to something. I will endeavour to be always in the authentic church.

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