Parishioners exorcize ‘soldier of Satan’ statue in southern Athens suburb


Holding banners and chanting hymns, some 100 parishioners marched from their church of Panaghia Myrtidiotissa in Palaio Faliro in southern Athens to a public sculpture where a priest sprinkled holy water on the art work to “exorcize its demons.”

In an open letter to Palaio Faliro Mayor Dionysis Hatzidakis, parish priest Patapios Argyros said that the sculpture – called Phylax (Guardian) – is a “demon and a soldier of Satan that, instead of being honored, must be despised as blasphemous to the holy trinity.”

He said the statue, created by sculptor Kostis Georgiou, is an affront to Orthodoxy and the Christian faith.

The bright-red statue depicts a winged human form seated on a tall metal pedestal.