A letter to "Greek America"

524 Green Grove Road
Wayside, New Jersey 07712

May 29, 1998

Greek America
406 Wimer Drive
Pittsburgh, PA 15237

Attention: Gregory C. Pappas
Editor and Publisher

Dear Gregory,

I read and enjoyed your article/editorial about the so called Greek Orthodox American leaders and totally agree with your observations.

It is unfortunate that some individuals use their financial strength to get their way by sending threats and ultimatums. This approach will not get them anywhere even if their concerns were justified.

Please note that these chronic problems with the Hellenic College existed long before the time of His Eminence Archbishop Spyridon. I know for a fact that he is trying to sort things out and I am sure that some people may disagree with his actions. It is understood we must also understand that he is the Archbishop and he must make the final choices. The same scenario exited with the jewel of our community The Saint Basil Academy. Again, I know for a fact that this Archbishop is trying very hard to bring back the old glorious days to the Academy. Furthermore, he appointed a new Board of Trustees who try very vigorously, with much success I must add, to raise funds and keep the Academy serving the needy of our community.

The condition was no better in the Archdiocese before His Eminence came. Several of GOALS members were part of the old leadership and they have no right to accuse this Archbishop for all the wrong doings in the Archdiocese. They are partially responsible too. Again, he is trying very hard to make changes and improve certain things. Let’s keep in mind that it is not easy to change things that have deep roots going back decades. It will take time, and certainly more than 18 months to change and make new beginnings. It is our obligation to support this Archbishop and the institution of the church in general.

At a time when Hellenism and Orthodoxy are being attacked on many different fronts, we don’t have the luxury to create artificial crises in the church. Division in our church would have negative effects on our community. We can not afford that!!

I met a number of times with His Eminence and I found him as you did always courteous, respectful and eager to hear someone’s opinion. He is always accessible and willing to see anyone that respectfully and away from ultimatums seeks to see him. I know he extended an invitation to GOAL and I hope they accept to meet with him. It would do our community and our church a lot of good.

Let’s hope for the best! We must remember though, our obligations to Hellenism and Orthodoxy and most importantly our obligations to the future generations.

Savas C. Tsivicos
Ecumenical Patriarchate

[ EKKLISIA |  -  May 29, 1998 ]