ATHENS – Fr. George Metallinos reposed in the Lord on Thursday, December 19, at the age of 79. His funeral was served the next day at the Church of St. Thomas in Ampelokipi, Athens, and he was buried at Playtera Monastery on the island of Corfu on Sunday, December 22.
Fr. George was among the most influential and authoritative priests, theologians, and professors of the Greek Orthodox Church in the 20th-21st centuries.
On December 22, the Greek outlet Oukraniko published a video of Fr. George from a Patristics conference he attended on May 18, 2019, in which he addresses Patriarch Bartholomew’s granting of a Tomos of autocephaly to the Ukrainian schismatics, characterizing it as a result of unfortunate geopolitics.
“The Ecumenical Patriarchate should not have rushed to the autocephaly of the Church of Ukraine, which according to the calendar of the Church of Greece belongs to the Church of Russia—we Greeks confess this,” Fr. George said, adding that we are now in troubled times and have returned to a cold war.
“The two world powers are in this conflict. In such a situation, the Ecumenical Patriarchate was, I believe, victimized, rushing to fulfill the wish of one party, a great power, and to come into conflict with the other great power,” he continued.
“As was the case with the pseudo-council on Crete, the Orthodox Church today is in dire straits,” Fr. George reflected, noting that the council was rejected by the majority of Orthodox.
We are now in a time of great conflict, with things changing from one moment to another, Fr. George said, pointing to the Ukrainian presidential election in March that brought in a new president with a new attitude towards Church-state relations.
“Thus, the Ecumenical Patriarchate should not have done this at this time,” Fr. George Metallinos concluded at the time.