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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, December 25, 2015 - Volume 43 Issue 52
Greek bishop throws hissy fit over civil unions
Catholics not the only ones with bigot bishops
Section One
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Greek bishop throws hissy fit over civil unions
Catholics not the only ones with bigot bishops

by Mike Andrew - SGN Staff Writer

A controversial Greek Orthodox bishop is spitting mad at the Greek parliament as it takes up legislation to allow same-sex civil partnerships.

While the synod that governs the Greek Orthodox Church simply reiterated its opposition to legal recognition for same-sex relationships, Bishop Ambrosios of Kalavryta took a more extreme view.

'Spit on them!' the bishop wrote in a blog post. 'Blacken them! Vote against them! They are not human! They are freaks of nature! Mentally and spiritually sick! They are mentally insane!

'Wherever you see them, spit on them! Don't leave them in peace! They are dangerous!'

It was not immediately clear whether he wanted Greeks to spit on Gays or on members of parliament who supported the socialist government's bill to legalize same-sex partnerships.

The SYRIZA party that governs Greece made the civil partnership bill one of the planks in its electoral platform, but until now all its energies were occupied negotiating bailout agreements with Greece's European creditors.

The Greek parliament began committee hearings on the civil partnership bill this month.

This is not Ambrosios' first foray into politics. In 2012 he wrote a blog post praising the neo-Nazi Golden Dawn party and chastising the left wing SYRIZA party for supporting anti-austerity street demonstrations.

Under the military dictatorship that ruled Greece from 1967 to 1974, Ambrosios was a police chaplain.

The head of the Greek Orthodox Church, Archbishop Ieronymos of Athens, opposes the bill on civil partnerships, but unlike his predecessor, Archbishop Chrystodoulos, Ieronymos has been reluctant to politicize the Church.

In 2008 the socialist mayor of the island of Tilos married one Gay and one Lesbian couple. Many Greek bishops - Ambrosios included - denounced the move as an 'abomination,' but Ieronymos shrugged it off.

'They weren't members of the Church and they didn't get married in church,' he said, 'so the Church really doesn't have anything to say about it.'

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Greek bishop throws hissy fit over civil unions
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