Hristodul Afinskiy

Picture of Hristodul Afinskiy

Nationality: Greece


He was known for an independent and sometimes confrontational stance in its relations with the Greek state, opposed the NATO actions in the Balkans and the position of Greece in these matters as a member of NATO. In 2000 he opposed the removal of the column "religion" of identity.

Born in 1939 in Xanthi, northern Greece.

In 1962 he graduated from law school, and in 1967 - the Theological School of the University of Athens.

In 1961 he was ordained a deacon; in 1965 - to the priesthood. Bore obedience in the parish of the Assumption in Paleo Falera, Athens, for 9 years.

For 7 years he was General Secretary of the Holy Synod.

In 1974, the Metropolitan Dimitriadskim (historical department of the ancient city near the present hair) was elected.

Since 1998 - Archbishop of Athens and All Greece. Due to political tensions with the then pravitelstvyom his enthronement on May 9 were not present neither the President nor the Prime Minister of Greece Costas Simitis

Reorganized Synod committees in accordance with modern social and other challenges, creating, in particular, the Synodal Committee on Bioethics.

December 14, 2006 had a meeting at the Vatican with Pope Benedict XVI - the first official visit of the head of the Greek Church in the Vatican. Earlier, in April 2005, Christodoulos was present in Rome for the funeral of Benedict`s predecessor, John Paul II.

In January 2008, the Archbishop was awarded the Russian international award "For Outstanding Contribution to strengthening the unity of Orthodox peoples."

In June 2007 in Athens suffered a surgery to remove a cancerous intestinal tumor, but it turned out that the tumor and struck his liver. Three months before his death, October 8, 2007 was canceled due to the detection of metastases of liver transplant operation, plan to Jackson Memorial Hospital, Miami, USA.

October 27, 2007 returned to Greece Christodoulos and the last three months of his life in his home near Athens, where he died on Monday 28 January 2008 at the age of 69 years. According to Greek television, citing police sources, two days more than 300 thousand people came to the Athens Cathedral to bid farewell to the deceased.

January 31, 2008 the rank of the funeral of the late Archbishop of Constantinople Patriarch Bartholomew led a concelebrated by the Primates of other Local Churches; at the service attended by all the political leadership of Greece (K. Papoulias, K. Karamanlis and OE); Patriarhatpredstavlyal Moscow Metropolitan Filaret of Minsk. In the funeral oration, Patriarch Bartholomew said "his zeal in church affairs, to work tirelessly for the good of the church, the proximity of young people, devotion to the Greek people, a major contribution to social and charitable works of the Church, not only in Greece, but also wherever suffered our Orthodox brothers - in Serbia, Russia, Lebanon and other countries. " The burial took place with state honors at the First Cemetery of Athens.

In 2003, there was a sharp deterioration of relations between the leadership of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, on the one hand, and the Synod of the ERC and personally by Archbishop Christodoulos, on the other hand, due to disagreements on the appointment procedure in the bishoprics of 36 dioceses of the so-called New Territories (Epirus, Macedonia, Thrace and the north Egei), since 1928 nominally stationed in the canonical jurisdiction of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, but in the actual conduct of the EOC. In view of the sharp confrontation between Patriarch Bartholomew April 30, 2004 based on the decision of the Synod to the Church severed communion and stop the commemoration of the Archbishop, and amid accusations by the Phanar against Archbishop sounded accusations of his "collusion" with the Russian in order to weaken the influence of the Department of Ecumenical Patriarch; a month later, it was achieved reconciliation and restoration of relations as a whole under the terms of Constantinople.

Criticized globalization steps to separate the school from the church, the Greek spelling reform as an action hostile to the Church and to the people; finding excuses terrorist acts against the United States, called Turks "eastern barbarians".

In early May 2001, despite massive protests, adopted in Athens Pope John Paul II, the former official guest of President Stephanopoulos, and did not object to the opening of a mosque in Athens next year. However, in January 2002, referring to the decision of the Synod, he declined the invitation of John Paul II to visit Rome for a return visit.

In May 2001, he visited Russia as a guest of the Moscow Patriarchate.

December 7, 2001 received the President of Russia Vladimir Putin.

In 2005 a number of Greek bishops (as EOC, and outside it, for example, subsequently deposed Jerusalem Patriarch Irenaeus) was implicated in a corruption scandal, and a number of journalists associated with their activities and Christodoulos.

In July 2006, he condemned the Israeli leadership, saying that "Israel`s actions on the implementation of their right to self-defense has long crossed the boundaries of any rational"