Panagiotis (Prokopios) Kanavas


Christodoulos’ statement to describe our venerable bishop, Nikandros of Dorylaeon, the assistant bishop in Adelaide to His Eminence Archbishop Stylianos, is rather a confession that describes him and Prokopios.

This blog page has attempted to inform our faithful that Christodoulos, Prokopios and all false clergy aligned with schism are indeed sinful children of a sinful mother.

We pray for them and wish them a blessed repentance.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, Have Mercy on Me. Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, Have Mercy on Your Servant.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, Have Mercy on Me. Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, Have Mercy on Your Servant.

“He can no longer have God for his Father, who has not the Church for his mother.”

This was written by Saint Cyprian of Carthage in the third century AD (died 258). Here is the quotation in context:

“The spouse of Christ cannot be adulterous; she is uncorrupted and pure. She knows one home; she guards with chaste modesty the sanctity of one couch. She keeps us for God. She appoints the sons whom she has born for the kingdom. Whoever is separated from the Church and is joined to an adulteress, is separated from the promises of the Church; nor can he who forsakes the Church of Christ attain to the rewards of Christ. He is a stranger; he is profane; he is an enemy. He can no longer have God for his Father, who has not the Church for his mother.” (Treatise on the Unity of the Church 6)

The Prodigal Son, Luke 15:11-32

Hello all, while we are still getting to know Yiannis Conidaris allow us to introduce you to Mr Nikolaos Fourtounis.

Mr Nikolaos Fourtounis was “ordained” by a Greek Old Calandarist (GOC) faction in September 2013 for their church in Melbourne called St. Gregorios. Today according to the “important announcement” below he is with Prokopios. Why? Well that is not important to us; suffice to say that these types of people have a way of attracting each other. Generally speaking they are as untrustworthy to our faithful as they are of each other and look to schism to satisfy their insatiable greed and disguise their passions. There is no ending in sight for them since truth and the existence of God have been effortlessly blocked from their world view. As long as they get what they want they will always be around; take this away from them and they are gone like a flash. To question, challenge and resist them means that you are no longer one of their victims. Only in this way can all GOCSA constituents and all the Orthodox faithful be liberated from their sway and corruption.

croydon-fb-fourtounis

Now to Prokopios’ contradictory announcement. According to Prokopios, Nikolaos’ ordination by Bishop Photios of GOC is valid but the church that he was assigned to by GOC is a “schismatic non canonical church”. Do you mean to say Mr Kanavas that anyone who serves in your “churches” is canonical whereas everything that they did before took place in a “schismatic non canonical church”? Or are you saying that you are part of the GOC synod in Greece and therefore recognize each others ordinations? But how can this be? GOCSA never have and never will have anything to do with the schismatic Greek Old Calandarists. GOCSA and GOC are two mutually independent schismatic groups that are cut off from the world wide communion of the Orthodox Church. The simple truth is that if someone officiates in a non-canonical church (like Nikolaos did in Melbourne) this is because (1) their ordination is non-canonical or (2) they left a canonical church and joined a non-canonical church. Mr Kanavas has had the rare occurrence of being in both predicaments.

We ask Mr Prokopios Kanavas to cease insulting the intelligence of the Greek Orthodox faithful in Adelaide, especially the poor GOCSA faithful who are exposed to his convoluted lies.

Saint Athanasios

Recently on January the 17th it was the feast day of St. Anthony and on January the 18th the feast day of St Athanasios. We noticed that Prokopios and all of the GOCSA churches held under Prokopios’ captivity honored the memories of St Anthony and St. Athanasios with a church service. It is timely then that we remind Prokopios what St. Athanasius said about schism and heresy in his book on the life of St. Anthony.

In things having to do with belief, he [Saint Anthony] was truly wonderful and orthodox. Perceiving their wickedness and apostasy from the outset, he never held communion with the Meletian schismatics. And neither toward the Manicheans nor toward any other heretics did he profess friendship, except to the extent of urging change to right belief, for he held and taught that friendship and association with them led to injury and destruction of the soul.  So in the same way he abhorred the heresy of the Arians, and he ordered everyone neither to go near them nor to share their erroneous beliefs. Once when some of the Ariomaniacs came to him, sounding them out and learning that they were impious, he chased them from the mountain, saying that their doctrines were worse than serpents poison. (Source: Athanasius – The life of Antony and the Letter to Marcellinus, Paulist Press, 1980, p81-82)

In the Orthodox Church we honor our saints by imitating them. ΤΙΜΗ ΑΓΙΟΥ, ΜΙΜΗΣΗ ΑΓΙΟΥ.

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,

Who the heck are Meletios and Volodymyr?

Meletios and Voldymyr are two so-called bishops of the so-called “Autocephalic Greek Orthodox Church of American and Canada – Former Exarchate of the Patriarchate of Alexandria“. Meletios is one of the “bishops” who physically came to Adelaide to partake in the “ordination” of Mr Kanavas. Volodymyr is one of the names that appears on Mr Kanavas’ pseudo-defrockment notice for Petros Haros which we discussed in more detail here (it appears Volodymyr’s since had a change of heart).

Let’s go to Meletios:

In August of 2013, Mr Kanavas continued with his perversion of Orthodox Christianity and was so called “ordained” as a “bishop”. At his ordination was a gentleman by the name of Meletios the so called “Metropolitan of Achaia and all of the Peloponnese” who came especially from Greece to take part in this Modern Greek tragedy.

In the letter below we hear Meletios request from the president of GOCSA Mr John Lesses that Mr Prokopios Kanavas stop his “lies, threats, reviles” and “pseudo-defrockments” against Petros Haros and Meletios. It is Petros Haros and Meletios who ordained Prokopios. How is it though, that within three months Prokopios divorces himself from them? Truly a case of corruption begetting corruption.

MeletiosLet’s move on to Volodymyr who is a bit more interesting.

Volodymyr claims that Prokopios was the secretary of Petros Haros’ synod in April 2013 a fact unbeknown to GOCSA and to Haros himself! In any case Prokopios took advantage of the fact that Volodymyr does not speak Greek but only conversational English and that Haros does not speak Ukrainian or English. Prokopios played the role of the interlocutor which meant that according to the language deficiencies of Haros and Volodymyr, he could orchestrate a dialogue that was vested in his own interests and ultimately not coherent with reality. The end result:

  1. Prokopios is seen as a hero because he inducts Volodymyr into what Volodymr believes is a canonical Orthodox Church.
  2. Haros sets up a franchise in the Ukraine all through the efforts of Prokopios.

1.      Volodymyr realizes (for the time being) that he was set up by Mr Prokopios Kanavas and details this in the letter written below (see the original in Ukrainian here). Of course Volodymyr is yet to wake up and accept that he is receiving the just deserts of his own uncanonical actions. To his credit Volodymyr admits the following:

  1. Mr Prokopios Kanavas is uncanonical and that he deceived Volodymyr into thinking that Prokopios was canonical.
  2.  Volodymyr did not sign any letter defrocking Petros Haros.
  3. Volodymyr apologies to the only canonical bishop in Adelaide, His Grace Bishop Nikandros of Dorylaeon and asks for his forgiveness.

The Letter from Volodomyr:

14th December, 2013

God bless all of us, dear bishops, fathers, brothers in Christ Jesus!

I, bishop of Pereyaslav and Bohuslav, Volodymyr (Vilde) from Ukraine am writing to you. I had a phone conversation with Father Silouan, also I have received letters from Bishop Nikandros from Australia about the conflict between the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople and the so called Autocephalic Greek Orthodox Church of America and Canada. I understand your concern; please forgive me I could not give the necessary answer to you for a long time. In Ukraine at the moment there is a very tense social and political situation and, unfortunately, I could not give my attention to your letters. Please forgive me once more.

I have read all the materials, which Father Silouan from Adelaide kindly sent to me. I am not indifferent about the current situation affecting the Greek Orthodox Church in Australia. I do not wish to participate in any divisions and misunderstandings because of Prokopios’ acts. I wish for the Greek Orthodox Church of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople to be undivided and united. The thing is that when I was asked to be included into Petro Haros’ Synod, I thought that his synod called the “Autocephalic Greek Orthodox Church of America and Canada” (former exarchate of Alexandria’s Patriarchate) which was led by Archbishop Dionysus Makrogambrakis was indeed canonical.  But Father Silouan explained to me, that Petros Haros’ documents of canonicity were fraudulently obtained. Consequently, Peter Haros and Prokopios do not belong to the canonical church (Patriarchate of Alexandria) of which they proclaim. 

Also, from the documents that Father Silouan sent to me I found out that Prokopios was defrocked from the Jerusalem Patriarchate as a deacon, and that Petros Haros was involved in suspicious and so called non-traditional healing practices. In any case their structure is not canonical and is not recognised by any of the World’s Orthodox churches. Also I discovered that Petros Haros and Procopios Kanavas were involved in several other scandals and caused division amongst the Greek Orthodox Communities of South Australia.

I would like to mention that I do not wish to belong any further to the structure which are led by Petros Haros and Prokopios Kanavas. For the last 2 months I did not sign their letters and petitions.

Also I want to mention that I recognise the authority of the Constantinople Patriarchate and respect their decisions. I do not wish to have conflict with the Ecumenical Patriarchate or to have any misunderstandings with your bishops. I greatly appreciate that Bishop Nikandros of Australia addressed me multiple times with archpastoral love and care, highlighting my mistake. I owe many thanks to Bishop Nikandros and pray for his health and wellbeing.

Keeping in mind everything written above, I repent of my own mistakes and officially declare my exit from the Synod of Haros and Kanavas and beg you to help me to be united with the Ecumenical Patriarchate.

I wish to belong to the great Church of Constantinople and wish to hear the conditions on which I can be accepted as an active bishop of the Ecumenical Patriachate. I am inspired and filled with hope by the fact that the Estonian Metropolitinate and the Ukrainian Autocephalic Church in America where included into the Ecumenical Patriarchia. I humbly beg for the same mercy to be granted to me and am ready to listen to your conditions.

I kneel before the Ecumenical order of the Constantinopolitan Church.

I hope for your mercy and understanding. I ask for your holy prayers for myself.

Volodymyr (Wilde) – The Bishop of Pereyaslav and Bohuslav.

Where to from here:

Prayer, patience and perseverance are needed by all devout Orthodox Christians. May this be expressed through our personal prayer life, our reading of the Holy Scriptures and our sincere worship in Church. If we all did this there would be no schism.

A final thought:

If schismatics like Meletios and Volodymyr denounce the schism in Adelaide how much more so should we the faithful of the canonical Greek Orthodox Church in Adelaide.

GOCSA's latest recruit - John Konidaris.

GOCSA’s latest recruit – Yiannis Conidaris.

Dear Readers,

We once again bring to your attention the name of another imposter masquerading as an Orthodox priest. His name is Yiannis Conidaris and just like all the other GOCSA employees wearing similar attire, he too is on the payroll to literally deceive our faithful into thinking that he is a legitimate Orthodox priest. Sadly Mr Conidaris conceals the fact that he was deposed by the Church of Greece, specifically through the “Secondary Synodical Court of the Church of Greece for Priests, Deacons and Monks” (decision number: 33/2011).

Some questions to ponder:

  1. Why is it that GOCSA regard the canonical decisions of the Orthodox Church with such contempt?
  2. Why is it that GOCSA act in ways that implicate them as being unaccountable to their constituents (most of whom have received a canonical baptism prior to 1960) and consequently to God?
  3. To date since 2010 approximately 6-10 clergy of similar ilk to Mr Conidaris have been put on the GOCSA payroll but have since been sacked or have resigned. Why such an unnaturally high turnover?

Some possible answers:

  1. The Orthodox Church has no ethical standing in GOCSA’s decision making. Truly if they could GOCSA would rather remove themselves from having any association with the Orthodox Church rather than pretend they are part of the Orthodox Church. Of course to do so would mean that GOCSA’s true identity of not being affiliated with the world wide communion of the Orthodox Church will be revealed. (A fact that they expediently conceal from their innocent and vulnerable constituents).
  2. GOCSA get away with what they do because their constituents (including voters) are not informed about the injustices/lies committed against them. More precisely it has not sunk in as yet that GOCSA are uncanonical. Fortunately things are slowly turning around. Still there is much work needed to be done, especially by the GOCSA members. For example GOCSA members have every right to question the GOCSA admin about their non-canonical status as an Orthodox Church and to demand answers as to why they are being told otherwise.
  3. While GOCSA are in schism and outside of the communion of the Orthodox Church they will always have a high turnover of clergy. Unfortunately all they have to do is look up the lists of deposed clergy from across the Orthodox world for new recruits. In the past new recruits have come from as far as Canada. However now that GOCSA are open to receiving deposed Greek Old Calanderist clergy (mostly gentleman who have been defrocked more than once, like Mr Prokopios Kanavas who has notched up his third defrockment) there is an overabundance of stock.

Our heartfelt prayer is for GOCSA to be grafted into the communion of the Orthodox Church. To do so is simply a matter of having canonically valid Orthodox clergymen. It is the current calibre of clergymen in GOCSA that are a hindrance to any form of reconciliation taking place. Together with the GOCSA admin who condone them they personify all that is against unity for the Greek Orthodox faithful in Adelaide. May the Lord hear our prayer and unite us all by His Grace and through His Church.

Dear readers,

On the basis of the correspondence sent to Mr Nigel Hunt of the Advertiser by Mr Petros Haros (that is, the fake “Archbishop Petros”), the concerns of those people who approached the State Supreme Court to halt the fake “ordination” of Mr Kanavas appears to have been entirely warranted. An ever-darkening cloud continues to hang over the Greek Orthodox Community of South Australia (GOCSA). Many Greek Orthodox Christians within the Canonical Orthodox Church are sincerely concerned for the faithful in GOCSA and these circumstances. There is no triumphalism. We are praying in Christ for these Greek Christian faithful, as we would for our own brothers and sisters, for their return home to their Canonical Orthodox Church, as have almost all of the former GOCSA “priests” including Fr Nicholas Despinoudis and Fr John Pokkias.

St Dionysios of Zakynthos, whom we commemorated yesterday (17th of December). Source: Orthodox Church in America.

This dark cloud has hung over the Greek Community in Adelaide since the late 1950s, when the then GOCSA Committee defied the then Metropolitan and later Archbishop Ezekiel, Primate of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople’s Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia, and chose schism from the entire world-wide Canonical Orthodox Church, instead of choosing to follow the path of patience, obedience and humility in Christ, prayer, faith and hope and the use of Canonical processes within Holy Tradition that were and are available for their perceived grievances to be addressed. The Greek Orthodox faithful that were forced to depart GOCSA by that Committee’s action, again built up the Canonical Archdiocesan Church in Adelaide.

This schism has continued to divide some families and has resulted in the loss of many (especially younger) Greek-Australians to the Orthodox Church and Faith – the same Church and Faith that sustained the Greeks, the Serbians, and the Bulgarians, through centuries of Turkish rule and enslavement, the same faith that sustained the Russians, Ukrainians and Georgians through the years of Mongol and Communist Rules and the same faith in the Holy Spirit that sustained the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church through 2000 years of persecution. The Lord said: “I will build My Church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it. And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven…” (Matt 16:18/Orthodox Study Bible).

Those who left the Church, perhaps searching for the Lord, may not have experienced or witnessed sincere Orthodox Christian Faith and life, but possible only saw worldly attitudes, cultural politicking, and misplaced emphases that insulted true Orthodox Christian Faith. Perhaps these people perceived that the Church was only a bastion of Greek culture and ethnicity, rather than a place in which, the Faithful worshipped Christ and which preached Faith in Christ and His Holy Church. The saying: “to be Orthodox one does not have to be Greek, but to be Greek, (or Serbian, Bulgarian, Russian or Ukrainian) one has to be Orthodox” has probably caused much heartache for those for whom the Faith is a stumbling block. This is not the place to discuss socio-cultural theory and the core values of our culture in which the Orthodox Church protected our cultural heritages and identity, whether you are Greek, Serbian, Russian etc. But if you wish to understand and see and hear what is the very core of our Greek Byzantine culture then look first at the significance, beauty and joy of Holy Pascha, and the Resurrection of Our God, Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. The Lord is at the heart of our Orthodox culture, not a “Greekness” without Christ.

GOCSA has effectively reduced its “churches” to a sideline social activity or an addendum to its community services. If the Orthodox faith is an inconvenience, and GOCSA would rather be rid of it, then convert your “churches” into bingo halls, Greek cultural palaces and cafes and leave the descriptor Orthodox and Christian out of your name. Look at the GOCSA website site Our Churches/Religion Information which for years has carried the following: “Sorry. This page is closed for maintenance.” Maintenance indeed! Every other page seems to be working well with the GOCSA website!

The matter regarding the so-called mutual “defrockings” or “depositions” between Mr Panagiotis (aka Prokopios) Kanavas and Mr Petros Haros, is now a point of mirth. The levels of stupidity have now reached new heights or should we say depths! Who first deposed whom, is of very little consequence. Both are fake “bishops”. The incredible irony is, of course, that both are judging each other using the one and same Canon Law by which they themselves were deposed by the Canonical Orthodox Church (see here for Mr Kanavas and here for Mr Haros). They have with all due “righteousness”, “integrity” and “indignation” shown an incredible dedication to upholding and using the Canons of the same Orthodox Church that deposed them, to depose each other, while completely denigrating the Canonical Church.

Mr Haros volunteered that he “ordained” Mr Prokopios without the accepted checks, credentialing and examination used by the Canonical Church, which he implies are the standards he upholds. What does that say about his devotion to upholding Holy Tradition and Canon Law with his all his mind, strength and being as is expected of a Bishop. Indeed, one would be almost certainly deposed for ordaining a Bishop in this manner, unless one was suffering a neurocognitive impairment. Who has heard of ordaining a man whom he did not know at all, on the hearsay of another person whom he also apparently did not know well enough? No preliminary “Synodal” recommendations, assessments, discussions and interviews. No reports from any Spiritual Father or Confessor. No assessment of performance and suitability. No checks. No documentation. No background check. No police check. No personal communication or meeting. Nothing!! Absolutely nothing!! All Mr Haros reports was the recommendation of a member of the GOCSA Committee. Who has ever heard of this? People in the secular world of companies & employment even do more due diligence than this when hiring a new employee, or appointing a new director to a company. Is the Bishop’s standing so devoid of any respect, so absolutely cheap, and such a joke, that it didn’t matter, even pretentiously for appearance’s sake, to look as if you had done something…anything… in the way of due diligence (even if you fabricated the evidence)? Why cry foul now when you decided to ordain in this manner contrary to the Holy Tradition, which you say that you uphold? After all, as a “Bishop” (and especially an “Archbishop”) the buck stops with you! Why hurry to ordain? What was the urgency or incentive to ordain? Or perhaps, this was a result of not being able to play the façade of being a (fake) “Archbishop”, or are there other reasons? And then we hear his story that he was later threatened with legal action by Mr Kanavas. If this is true where is the proof? Where is the resulting legal action either here or in Greece? Of course, in Greece, if you are not recognised as a Church in any case, the courts would essentially be trying to sort out a squabble between two men who are deluded enough to think they both are Bishops, and who have both deposed each other, via their fake Synods. If any of this is remotely true, then one worries even more about GOCSA.

Both Mr Haros and Mr Kanavas have weaved stories and misrepresentations to each other and to those that have trusted them. The antics of the so-called Holy Orthodox Metropolis of Australia and Oceania (HOMAO) (another uncanonical and schismatic group consisting of 3 deposed clergy in Australia), is as essentially pathetic as the story of the so-called Former Exarchate of Alexandria (Haros Synod) and the now Former Exarchate of Alexandria (“Prokopios” Synod) both claiming to control the so-called Autocephalic Greek Orthodox Church of American and Canada (AGOCAC) and the Autocephalic Greek Orthodox Church of America and Australia (AGOCAA). The relationship breakdown between the Federation of Greek Orthodox Communities of Australia (FOGOCA) and the so-called “priests” in HOMAO has been documented.

Mr Kanavas, if you are Canonically ordained, please show the relevant documents so that they can be seen and crosschecked with their relevant Synod, because all relevant Canonical Church Synods claim that you are deposed. If the letters of the relevant Autocephalous Churches documenting your deposition are fabrications, then what have you done about it (as it would appear that an incredible injustice has been done to you)? What has been the legal follow-up? Please show the letters of communication between yourself and the Patriarchate of Jerusalem addressing this matter. After all, if this is such a great misunderstanding or mistake, or the Patriarchate of Jerusalem are lying; then all is very, very wrong, and would require follow-up within the appropriate channels and appeals.

Likewise if you have a tertiary qualification or completed courses then please present the relevant degrees and documentation. If you have lost them, then do you have your University Student Numbers, or any other correspondence or documentation with the relevant University of Academic Institutions, which can be presented as showing that you completed a degree or diploma, or perhaps a course of study, or were admitted for study to a University before perhaps deferring or withdrawing or whatever? Have you documentation or correspondence showing your concern about the University’s lack of responsibility and apparent negligence concerning their lack of knowledge of your attendance. Surely you must have some documentation of something? If all this is lacking then what has been your course of action about having your grievance addressed by the relevant University or Academic Institution?

Are you not concerned that Mr Haros has made these claims? They are easily sorted out by simply showing the credentialing paperwork that you have obviously sent to him for the purposes of being “ordained” a “Bishop”, as well as referees reports including that of your spiritual father(s) and confessor and your declaration that there is nothing, absolutely nothing precluding you from the bishopric.

Of course all this shows the incredible façade being played out by Mr Kanavas, Mr Haros and their cohorts. Mr Kanavas is a fake “Bishop”, “Metropolitan”, and “Exarch”, and GOCSA and all of its “clergy” are uncanonical. GOCSA is at the cross-roads. They need to know when to cut their losses and stop throwing “good money” after bad.

St Dionysios of Zakynthos forgiving the murderer of his brother. May we all have this capacity to forgive. Source: Antiochian Village.

The Good News

The Good News is that the Orthodox Church, specifically, the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia welcomes its children home to the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. Have courage, as did your former “clergy”. The Faithful of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia will continue in Christ, with sincerity, and without triumphalism, to pray for those in GOCSA, and those who have left the Canonical Orthodox Church altogether, to come to Christ in humility and love. We pray that St Dionysios, whom we commemorated yesterday (as every year) on the 17th of December, pray for GOCSA and all of our people. St Dionysios the Archbishop of Aegina is an incredible example of forgiveness, mercy, and love.

God is love, and if we live in God, we live in His Love. The Orthodox Christian faithful are baptised in Christ in His One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church, our Holy Orthodox Church, Our Mother in which we are led in faith and Theosis, through the Prayers of The Holy Theotokos and all the Saints, no matter the sins, failings, mistakes, shortcomings of all within the Church whether Patriarchs or lay. We do this with boldness in faith, because as St John the Theologian writes in his First Epistle: “Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness in the day of judgement; because as He is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love. We love Him because he first loved us. If someone says I love God and hates his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen? And this commandment we have from Him: that he who loves God must love his brother (1 John 16-21 Orthodox Study Bible).

God bless you and our people through the Prayers of the Holy Theotokos and Saint Dionysios of Zakynthos.

Dear readers,

There is a well-known saying that goes “you can fool some people all of the time, and all people some of the time, but you can’t fool all people all of the time” (and small variations thereof). This statement is true and applies especially to con-artists and compulsive liars – eventually their lies catch up with them and they are found out. Sadly, as recent revelations have again confirmed, such is the case with our “venerable Metropolitan” Mr Kanavas.

In the light of these recent revelations, and in honour of the George Street Greek Festival (which is being held this weekend), we thought it might be interesting & timely to revisit an old post that we captured by Mr Kanavas way back in November 2011, when our Facebook page was still running. On this occasion we criticised GOCSA (and particularly the parish of “St Nicholas”) for planning to serve meat at their inaugural George Street Festival, when the festival was being held during a fast when meat & dairy are not permitted (an error they have repeated this year). In response, Mr Kanavas hit back with criticisms against the Monastery of St Nectarios and the Parish of St Nicholas, Wallaroo:

Mr Kanavas claims (in 2011) that he has been a priest for 13 years

Mr Kanavas claims (in 2011) that he has been a priest for 13 years (and no, St Nicholas @ Wallaroo did not offer meat during the Christmas fast).

Mr Kanavas’ unfounded counter-criticisms

Although it is not the main thrust of our post, nevertheless it behooves us to briefly mention that all of his counter-criticisms are completely misguided:

  • It is not unheard of for monasteries to be in cities (eg, the famous  Monastery of Stoudios in Constantinople, not to mention Mr Kanavas’ own former brotherhood when he was in Jerusalem!)
  • Monasteries often relax (but not break) a fast by allowing fish if it coincides with the feast day of their patron saint.
  • Finally, the Parish of St Nicholas at Wallaroo disappointed Mr Kanavas’ expectations by adhering to the Christmas Fast during their celebrations (fish was served, but no meat or dairy).

When did Mr Kanavas become a priest?

But now to our main reason for bringing up this old post: Mr Kanavas’ age. There is clearly a degree of confusion about how old Mr Kanavas is. As Mr Haros pointed out in his letter, this question matters because there is a certain minimum age before a person is permitted to become a bishop.

The above post from Facebook really throws a spanner in the works. Note that Mr Kanavas claimed to have been a priest for 13 years! If this were true, that would mean that he has been a priest for 15 years now (the comment being two years ago). So how old was he at the time he was ordained a priest???

  • If he is 35 now (old enough to be a bishop), he was a tender 20 years of age or younger when he was ordained a priest!
  • If he is 27 or 28 (as suggested by Mr Hunt & Mr Haros respectively), then that would make him just 12 or 13 years of age when he was ordained a priest!

Whichever way you look at it, this is impossibly young for him to have been ordained a priest. Clearly he was exaggerating severely when he claimed to have been a priest for 13 years.

Has Mr Kanavas been reporting the length of his “priesthood” in dog years? Image source: Dog Years.

And when did he become a deacon?

Complicating the matter further is the fact that we know that he was still a deacon in Jerusalem in June 2008, when he was deposed by the Patriarchate of Jerusalem. After that he spent a year in military service in Greece, so the earliest he could have been pseudo-ordained to the priesthood would have been in 2009. And yet, a mere two years later in 2011, he claimed to have been a priest (not merely a deacon) for a full 13 years!

Perhaps in the parallel universe where Mr Kanavas lives time passes much more quickly, so that two of our normal Earth-years are equivalent to 13 of his… Or perhaps he’s using dog-years???

Conclusion

While the above was written for a bit of a laugh and the subject matter may seem trivial, nevertheless there is an important message to take home from this (which has only been reinforced by recent events) – Mr Kanavas is loose with the truth (to put it kindly). Whether it be passing off others’ sermons has his own, to lying about his age, to lying about his tertiary qualificationsanything he says (even on apparently trivial things) must be taken with a pinch of salt.

Dear readers,

We have come into possession of a complaint letter written by Mr Periklis (aka Petros) Haros in which he outlines the complaints against Mr Kanavas that led firstly to his suspension & then his deposition. While there is no date on the letter, the content implies that it was written after the suspension but before the deposition (because he mentions the former as a past event, but not the latter). At any rate, the letter seems to have been signed by Mr Haros (signature matches the last one we received) and includes his phone number, which means that it is almost certainly legit (if anyone is skeptical they can call the phone number and ask).

The letter was addressed to Mr Nigel Hunt of the Advertiser/Sunday Mail newspaper, who has been covering the unfolding scandal over the last few years, though to the best of our knowledge Mr Hunt has not as yet published this material.

What’s news & what’s not

Much of what is included in this letter is not news to us, nor will it be news to our regular readers, as we have reported on it before (in particular in this post). This includes the facts that:

  • Mr Kanavas lied about his tertiary qualifications, his age and his ordination status.
  • Mr Haros foolishly accepted Mr Kanavas at his word on all of the above without doing due diligence.
  • Mr Kanavas responded to Haros’ requests for proof of the above with threats of legal action.

None of this is news. However, what we learn from this letter which was previously unknown is:

  • Mr Haros seems to admit to his foolishness. In hindsight he is supportive of those members of GOCSA & the Greek community who protested against Mr Kanavas’ ordination, and actually seems to be a bit apologetic at what he has done.
  • Mr Haros claims that he was put under “immense pressure” to ordain Mr Kanavas.
  • Mr Haros is also highly critical of Mr John Lesses (current President of the GOCSA executive) for his role in the above – claiming that Mr Lesses also (along with Mr Kanavas) pressured him into ordaining Mr Kanavas before receiving official confirmation believing that Mr Kanavas had the necessary qualifications.

This last point is an important observation – it suggests that Mr Kanavas was not acting alone, but that his deceptive actions had the support of highest level of the GOCSA executive – namely, the President Mr John Lesses. We plan to return to this observation at a later date as the subject of another post.

You can read the complaint letter here.

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