Tension prevails once again within the Church of Georgia. The clergy and laity of the Holy Diocese of Tskodidi reacted to the election of the new Metropolitan of the Diocese by the Holy Synod of the Patriarchate of Georgia.
According to the website “Ecclesiastical News of Georgia“, clergymen and laity gathered two days ago outside the Metropolis and did not allow the new Metropolitan to enter, while some clergymen called him a “pseudo-bishop”.
The Georgian Police tried to protect Metropolitan Stefanos, but also to prevent further tensions and/or injuries among the crowd that was gathered.
The tension was a result of the decision of the Holy Synod of the Georgian Patriarchate to furlough Metropolitan Petros of Tskondidi and to replace him with Bishop Gregory of Tsalka.
However, the clergy and the people reacted with this decision and demanded the return of Metropolitan Peter. Seeing the unrest, Bishop Gregory requested and returned to his Diocese, while the Diocese of Tskondidi was transferred to the jurisdiction of the neighboring Diocese of Tsageri and Lentekhi, which is administered by Metropolitan Stefanos.
Clergy and laity again did not accept the decision of the Holy Synod and riots began against Metropolitan Stefanos.