By Maria Antoniadou

No to ridiculousness, anachronism, and complacency was the resounding message of Metropolitan Gabriel of Nea Ionia at a meeting of the Holy Synod where the course of the COVID-19 epidemic was discussed.

Though Archbishop Ieronymos and the Holy Synod have long supported the Greek vaccine rollout, renegade bishops and priests have all too often ignored the instructions of the Church leadership, violating public health restrictions and ignoring the recommendations of doctors and scientists.

The Metropolitan bishop took a clear stand even as a growing divide is evolving in Greece between vaccinated and unvaccinated citizens and between members of families, groups, and society.

Noting that the times do not permit division or greater alienation, Gabriel said that there is a danger of a new division “between the vaccinated and unvaccinated” which the Church must counter with love and solidarity.

“We must cultivate in people concord any unity, which are rooted in the Church itself,” he said.