LAST UPDATE: 10:12
Deputy Minister Markos Bolaris, in an interview with ANA-MPA, called religious and ecclesiastical diplomacy a challenge for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
On the occasion of the two-day conference on Religious and Ecclesiastical Diplomacy, organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, he stressed “We live in an extremely interesting era, having the flexibility and the luxury to be with fellow human beings of every gender, country and race. This is a reality that politicians must see.”
Responding to whether Church and diplomacy are incompatible notions, Bolaris noted that the Church practises diplomacy every day. He gave as an example the Patriarchate of Jerusalem, “which has to talk with the Israeli government, the Palestinian Authority, and the King of Jordan as well.”
He also spoke of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, which “from 1453 until today, it is under, initially, the Ottoman and, then, the Turkish dominion.” He spoke about the management of the Patriarchate over the centuries and pointed out that “one of the greatest diplomatic achievements is the text of Gennadius Scholarius, the first Patriarch after the Fall of Constantinople, with which he convinced Sultan Mehmed II that the Greeks should live with the Turks in the Ottoman Empire, and thus we kept our language, religion, homeland and consciousness.”
When asked how he sees our future relations with the neighbors and the future of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, on the occasion of his recent visit to Imvros, the Deputy Minister answered positively that “Greece must find a new way of living, modus vivendi, with its neighbors.”
Regarding whether the Greek government is concerned with the future of the Archbishops of the Ecumenical Throne – America, Australia, Thyateira and Great Britain, Deputy Minister Bolaris argued that developments are being monitored, and there are daily reports from the Greek embassies and consulates.
“We understand the management of the Ecumenical Patriarchate and I admit that we are watching with great satisfaction and great pride both the Ecumenical Patriarchate and the Patriarchate of Alexandria in Africa, which are both creating new metropolises to serve the needs of the Greeks.”