Voithia - April 25, 1999

Spyridon to visit Cleveland Cathedral
after massive vote to withhold funds

By  Andrew Kartalis
Voithia Correspondent

CLEVELAND, OH -- A special parish assembly of Saints Constantine and Helen Greek Orthodox Cathedral here today voted by 90% to withhold funds from the Archdiocese until Metropolitan Maximos advises that "substantial progress" toward resolution of the issues in the Metropolitans' Report has been made. Archbishop Spyridon, the target of the action, is set to visit the parish next Sunday, May 2.

The turnout for the special meeting was massive compared to the typical turnout of between 40 and 80 parishioners. After discussion by proponents and opponents of the resolution, each speaking alternately, a vote was taken by secret ballot. The vote was 153 in favor of the resolution, 17 against it, and 2 abstentions.

It should be noted that even those who spoke against the resolution prefaced their remarks by agreeing that Spyridon is not suited to be Archbishop. They opposed the resolution either out of fear of what he could do to the priest and the parish, or they thought other alternatives should continue to be explored in order to accomplish Spyridon's removal.

A few concerns were raised about how the institutions and the dioceses could be hurt through the lack of funds. But these were ameliorated by the comment that the parish could continue to make direct donations to those entities if it wished to.

Not one person spoke in defense of Archbishop Spyridon. There was a general feeling that the Archbishop was being directed by the Patriarch, and a general frustration that the Patriarch had reacted as he has.

The text of the resolution adopted by the parish assembly is as follows:

"Whereas the community of Sts. Constantine and Helen Greek Orthodox Cathedral wishes to demonstrate its support for the actions of the Metropolitans, the Clergy, the Archons, and our fellow parishes in response to the recent developments in the Greek Orthodox Church in America;

Now Therefore be it resolved that the stewardship contribution of Sts. Constantine and Helen Greek Orthodox Cathedral of Cleveland Heights, Ohio to the Archdiocese be held in an internal escrow account until the Parish Council President is advised by His Eminence Metropolitan Maximos that substantial progress toward the resolution of the issues outlined in the January 9, 1999 report to the Patriarch has been made."

[ Voithia - - April 25, 1999 ]