enet.gr

Orthodox bishop claims cloak has special powers

Cleric says Christians must only vote for politicians who 'believe in Christ'

In a fiery speech, the metropolitan bishop of Gortyna and Megalopoli, Ieremias, warns those who want to harm him that his 'clerical robe has three-phase power'

Metropolitan Bishop of Gortyna and Megalopoli Ieremias (Photo: ANA) Metropolitan Bishop of Gortyna and Megalopoli Ieremias (Photo: ANA) An Orthodox bishop has lashed out at his critics, warning them that his clerical cloak has special powers.

"Whoever wants to do anything to me, my clerical robe has three-phase power," shouted the metropolitan bishop of Gortyna and Megalopoli, Ieremias, while addressing a meeting of people from his diocese in an Athens hotel earlier this week.

After making the comment at the start of his speech, the 72-year-old prelate took off his black outer cloak, known as an exorason, and held it up.

In his address, which comes days after New Democracy issued a statement asking whether Syriza leader Alexis Tsipras was an atheist, the bishop urged believers to bless themselves before voting at the ballot box.

"The ruler of our country must bless himself. He doesn't have to clutch a prayer rope – where could we found such a person – but he needs to say 'I believe in Christ; I believe in the Virgin Mary' rather than saying "I don't believe'.

"Christians, listen to me. Voting is an honourable thing. You need to bless yourself before marking the ballot," Ieremias urged.

Screaming and thumping his fist on rostrum, he continued: "Are those of you who light your candles going to vote for someone who says he doesn't believe?"

He said the only candidates deserving of a vote are those who "believe in Christ and who oversee parades".

The bishop labelled Syriza MP Vangelis Diamantopoulos a "scoundrel"  for dressing up as a drunken priest in a New Year’s Day carnival in the northern city of Kastoria.

Send with e-mail Print Page

Read also

In category
News
With tags
Orthodox Church
Syriza
Religion
Alexis Tsipras