For those who caught yesterday (Sunday) evening’s news on Channel 7 Adelaide, you may have caught an answer by Elias Gratsias (on behalf of GOCSA and the Autocephalic “Greek Orthodox” Church of America and Canada) to the question of why a division exists (and remains) between GOCSA and the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia. He gave the following answer (we paraphrase):

The division exists because of disputes over property ownership.

We are absolutely gobsmacked that this bold-faced lie continues to be circulated by officials closely connected to the GOCSA executive after all this time.

Here we are, more than two years after the reunion between GOCNSW and the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese, and not a single property transfer has taken place from GOCNSW to the Archdiocese. To this day,  there are dozens of Greek Orthodox parish-communities in the Archdiocese that own their own property in their own name, and have done for decades. Further, His Eminence Archbishop Stylianos and His Grace Bishop Nikandros have categorically denied that they are interested in the property. And as we have explained previously it’s not even legally possible for the Archdiocese to take property without a Community’s consent.

Of course, we have addressed this vicious rumour before, but hitherto we thought it was a misconception mostly among the GOCSA faithful and that the Executive knew otherwise. But now it is obvious that this is misconception is held (perhaps even perpetuated) at the highest levels of their organisation. Or perhaps even more sinister, this lie is deliberately and knowingly perpetuated by the executive – they know the truth but continue to spread the lie because the lie is more convenient. Either way, this has to stop. How can an organisation call itself “Christian” while propagating such blatant and defamatory lies?

To all those of our readership who love truth and hate lies (both those of GOCSA and those of the Archdiocese), we implore you to help put these vicious rumours to an end. As we wrote on the post on Unity way back in 2011: the Archdiocese does not want your property, and it does not want your money. It wants one thing and one thing only: your souls. It wants to bring them back into the safety of the Orthodox Church, to be ministered by real priests and served real Mysteries (Sacraments) and nourished with the real Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ. If this is what you want too, then spread the word!

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