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GREEK ORTHODOX REGIONAL HIERARCH VISITS SIOUX CITY

REGIONAL COMMANDERS OF THE ORDER OF ST ANDREW WILL JOIN BISHOP DEMETRIOS IN A PRESENTATION ON THE CHALLENGES FACING THE ECUMENICAL PATRIARCHATE OF CONSTANTINOPLE

SIOUX CITY, IOWA: Bishop Demetrios of Mokissos, Chancellor of the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago, visited Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church in Sioux City on Sunday, December 11. Bishop Demetrios officiated Sunday Services and, in a surprise to the parish while acting on the wishes of His Eminence Metropolitan Iakovos, bestowed the honor of “Confessor” on Parish Priest Father Dimitri Tobias.

To cap off a busy Sunday morning, he blessed two new Icons, enjoyed a Christmas Presentation by the Sunday School Students, and then participated in a presentation by the Regional Commanders of the Order of Saint Andrew (Archons) explaining the continual challenges facing the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople. Bishop Demetrios was honored to be joined at Sunday Service by Sioux City Mayor Bob Scott and Jerry Self, Regional Director for US Senator Joni Ernst. Previously on Saturday evening, Bishop Demetrios and the Regional Archon Commanders had the honor to join Father Dimitri Tobias and the Parish Council at the Sioux City Symphony Orchestra featuring the Native American Band Brule`.

Bishop Demetrios of Mokissos serves as the Chancellor of the Metropolis of Chicago, under the leadership of Metropolitan Iakovos of Chicago. In his position, he travels throughout the Metropolis of Chicago to visit most of the parishes annually. He has received nationwide recognition for his human rights activities and interfaith outreach, including his leadership in ending the death penalty in Illinois, state resolutions calling for Religious Freedom for the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople, and just recently this year official recognition by the United States of the Genocide against the Christian minority population of Syria and Iraq.

In 2009, Iowa joined to date 45 other states in passing Resolutions calling for Religious Freedom for the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople, spiritual leader of Eastern Orthodox worldwide. Similar resolutions have been issued by the United States Congress and European Union as well as being strongly endorsed by Pope Benedict, Pope Francis, previous Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, and President Barack Obama.

Since accepting the post of Regional Commanders for the Metropolis of Chicago, both John G. Manos and Gus M. Pablecas have made it their mission, with help from fellow Archons within the Metropolis of Chicago, to spread the word of the Order of the Archons by establishing an initiative that teaches about religious freedom to lay people within the Metropolis of Chicago. A primary method of spreading the word has been the establishment of Religious Freedom Symposiums that delve into how the Archon’s are defending and promoting the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople.

As part of this initiative, the Regional Commanders have developed a PowerPoint presentation on the Five Key Issues of the Ecumenical Patriarchate to coincide with their parish visits to speak with congregants. Their ultimate goal through this initiative is to reach out to all parishes in the Metropolis of Chicago to spread the word about Religious Freedom and the plight of the Ecumenical Patriarchate.