FAQs about the GOC

Question 4

Is it possible that the Genuine Orthodox Christians were left without Hierarchical succession because God willed it? After all, how does one know that the persecutions were as bad as claimed?

Archbishop Spyridōn (Blachos) of Athens and All Greece (1873–1956) became the Primate of the Church of Greece in 1949 and immediately instigated the fiercest persecution to date against the Old Calendarists. After spending a few years gathering from all of his Metropolitans information about the Old Calendarists, including the ecclesiastical properties they owned, the Church of Greece submitted a request to the Council of Ministers, who in turn issued a decree against the Old Calendarists. It effectively called for clergy, monks, and nuns who followed the Old Calendar to be stripped of their cassocks and prosecuted, and for parishes, monasteries, and convents to be seized and turned over to the Church of Greece. This decree resulted in (a) clergymen of the Church of the Genuine Orthodox Christians of Greece being taken to the basement of the headquarters of the Archdiocese of Athens, where they were stripped of their cassocks, shaved, often beaten, and sent out into the streets wearing civilian clothing; (b) the Old Calendar Churches in Athens being sealed and their Holy Vessels being seized by the Church of Greece; (c) some of the Churches of the Old Calendarists being demolished; (d) Old Calendarist clergy and monastics having to walk around in public in disguise in an attempt to avoid being maltreated; (e) a prohibition against clergy serving a funeral for Bishop Germanos of the Cyclades upon his decease; (f) the arresting of those who participated in funerals of Old Calendarist clergymen; (g) violent acts of sacrilege, such as the spilling of Holy Communion Consecrated in Old Calendar Churches and the overturning and desecration of an Old Calendar Epitaphios on Great Friday of 1952; and (h) the murder of the aged Presbyter Platon of Patras, who was beaten to death by the authorities and then buried in a nearby field to cover up the murder….

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