Metropolitan Elpidophoros of Bursa and head of the Halki seminary was invited to give a conference in the Faculty of Theology of the University of Nicosia.
Metropolitan Elpidophoros spoke to postgraduate students on “Church and Diplomacy” in the framework of the conference cycle organized by the University of Nicosia.
The Metropolitan of Bursa and Professor of the Department of Pastoral and Social Theology of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki stressed: “We often notice that there is a danger of ignoring the role of religion in general and of the Church in particular in international relations or geostrategic changes and in maintaining the balance.”
Metropolitan Elpidophoros said: “Religion and religious structures, whether they are churches or clergy, or hierarchical structures that manage, in inverted commas, the expression of the religious sentiment of a people are very important factors for both nation and society as a whole, as well as in the relations of this whole with the wider geographical and global environment, in which it any people interacts.”
He also noted: “Religions are the major factors determining for both the identity of the peoples who embrace them and the relations between peoples that have different or similar religions.”
After the end of the conference, there was a discussion with the students, among other things, about the recent developments in Ukraine. The Metropolitan of Bursa underlined that the Ecumenical Patriarchate, through the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, granted the Tomos of Autocephaly as the Mother Church, which was requested by Ukraine.
He also noted that the issue of the Ecumenical Pattern belongs exclusively to the Ecumenical Patriarch, and therefore the Ecumenical Patriarch exercised his powers, by granting the Tomos of Autocephaly to the Church of Ukraine.
At the same time, the head of the Halki seminary informed the students about the activities of the seminary, in cooperation with various universities and scientific centers, the classification and enrichment of the seminary’s library and the organization of various scientific conferences.