The National Herald - July 29-30, 2000

Under "demonic attack"?

A Letter to The National Herald

To The Editor,

I have just read that Archbishop Spyridon is in Portugal. I believe that this is a good time for me to express why I was so supportive and fond of him.

I did not know him, but I did know the people that created the rumpus. They were certainly not with God. Actually their language, deceit and malice (just look at The National Herald), not to mention their greedy and avaricious characters, made me realize that Archbishop Spyridon was under demonic attack. The attacks on him were so severe and continuous, that I wondered what it was about him that made Satan so fearful and why he wanted him out of the country and away from the church. Could it be that the Greek Orthodox Church was his and he didn't want it returned to God?

I wondered, as I still do because of the severity of the attacks, if Archbishop Spyridon is destined for Sainthood. Most Greeks have the ridiculous idea that Saints are mediocre personalities with wishy washy characters and present themselves to the world with the pathetic expressions formed by iconographers.

They are not. They have very strong and righteous personalities. They have tempers as well as a sense of humor, because they are what they appear to be (just look at Mother Theresa).

They are only concerned with the well being of others and their personal relation to God.

It is this that gives them their heroic virtue, for it's the peace of mind and lack of selfishness that makes them disliked and persecuted by some very weak individuals.

I can only recall what a world famous Evangelical minister said: a religious leader must draw you to Our Savior. If he draws you to himself and makes you love him, it is a cult.

If I loved Archbishop Spyridon, it was because we both loved Christ. In this sense we can certainly say that Archbishop Spyridon was a true church leader of the Greek Orthodox Church. Can we say it about the others?

Obviously God has some determined end for Spyridon since he was Archbishop for three years - a holy number. It could be the beginning of an upheaval and a true reform of the church. The reform that Archbishop Spyridon wanted to accomplish, not the pretentious one of Archbishop Demetrios. I certainly hope so.

Michelle R. Gapriellis
Los Angeles, California

[ Orthodox Truth |  -  July 29-30, 2000 ]