Chrysostomos II of Cyprus

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His All Holiness
Chrysostomos II
Archbishop of Cyprus
Chrysostomos II of Cyprus.jpg
Archbishop Chrysostomos II during a visit in Moscow.
Church Church of Cyprus
Diocese Cyprus
Installed 1 October 2006
Term ended Incumbent
Predecessor Chysostomos I
Personal details
Birth name Herodotos Dimitriou
Born (1941-04-10) 10 April 1941 (age 73)
Tala, Cyprus
Denomination Eastern Orthodox Church
Residence Nicosia, Cyprus
Occupation Archbishop
Profession Theologian
Alma mater University of Athens

Chrysostomos II, Archbishop of Nova Justiniana and All Cyprus (Greek: Χρυσόστομος Β΄, born Ηρόδοτος Δημητρίου, Hēródotos Dēmētríou on 10 April 1941) is the incumbent Archbishop of Cyprus.[1] He was born in Tala village, Paphos.[2]

Chrysostomos II with the then President of Russia Dmitry Medvedev

Religious calling[edit]

At the age of 10 he lost his father and two years later, after finishing his elementary education, he joined the monastery of Ayios Neophytos in Paphos. He also attended Paphos Gymnasium, graduating in 1963.[3] On 3 November, of the same year, he was ordained deacon by the Bishop of Trimithounda, Georgios.

For five years, he served as trustee of the monastery and also worked on a ranch. In 1968 he enrolled in the Theological School of the University of Athens and graduated in 1972. On 19 October 1972, he was elected as the hegumen (abbot) of the Monastery of St. Neophytos.[4] On 12 November 1972, he was ordained a presbyter and was elevated to hegumen by Archbishop Makarios III.

Resistance to ecclesiastical coup[edit]

During Makarios III's presidency, he stood by the Archbishop against the Junta of Athens and the three metropolitans who led the Ecclesiastical coup.

Election as Metropolitan of Paphos[edit]

He was elected Metropolitan (Bishop) of Paphos on 25 February 1978,[5] and his episcopal consecration took place on 26 February 1978. During his time as a bishop he represented the Autocephalous of the Church of Cyprus in many conferences abroad, dedicated fifty new regional temples and chapels in the Paphos District, and maintained and attended all the churches of his metropolitan periphery. He also founded five Byzantine museums which contain the church treasures of the Paphos District. He played an important role in confronting and correcting irregularities and mismanagement in the Archdiocese, helping to preserve the Ecclesiastical fortune.

Election as Archbishop of Cyprus[edit]

When Archbishop Chrysostomos I was removed from office (due to illness), Metropolitan Chrysostomos was elected as locum tenens, and Archiepiscopal elections were set for 24 September 2006. In October 2006, Metropolitan Chrysostomos became the new Archbishop of Cyprus as Chrysostomos II.

Social conservatism[edit]

Chrysostomos II is known for his social conservatism. He has opposed illegal immigration into Cyprus, branding illegal immigrants as 'interlopers who do not belong on the island' and shares some views with the Cyprus' National People’s Front (ELAM).[6][7][8][9] In 2014 he called for politicians to condemn homosexuality and claimed governments demonstrated 'weakening moral integrity' by introducing civil partnerships and same-sex marriage. His comments were attacked by Cypriot MEP Andreas Pitsillides as 'racist and homophobic' and stated 'I emphatically stress these are clearly against the spirit of the Gospel of love of Christ and certainly violate all European and international treaties protecting human rights against any form of discrimination based on race, gender, religion and sexual orientation'. Another MEP, Ulrike Lunacek, claimed the Orthodox Church was 'detached from reality'.[10]

Papal audiences[edit]

Chrysostomos II was received in a historic private audience with Pope Benedict XVI in the Vatican, on 16 June 2007.[11] Their discussions involved the safety of Christians in the Middle East as a result of an ongoing political tension between warring countries. They had another meeting on 28 March 2011.[12][13]

Church assets[edit]

On 20 March 2013, it was reported that Chrysostomos II said he would put the Cyprus Orthodox Church's assets at the country's disposal to help pull the country out of its financial crisis. He said the church was willing to mortgage its assets to invest in government bonds.[14][15]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

Preceded by
Chrysostomos I
Archbishop of Cyprus
2006–
Succeeded by
Incumbent