Ieronymos wants a more tolerant Church

Archbishop Ieronymos yesterday distanced himself from the Holy Synod, which last week described cohabitation between unmarried couples as «prostitution,» saying the Church should be more open-minded and less moralizing. «The Church is what Christ wants it to be, not what people want it to be,» Ieronymos told a congregation at Kalamata Cathedral. «We are giving the impression that the role of the Church is to force people to be good,» he said. Ieronymos cited the example of Saint Dionysus of Zakynthos, who reached sainthood even though he had sinned by harboring a criminal. The Holy Synod’s statement, apparently influenced by Bishop Anthimos of Thessaloniki, was a reaction to government plans to introduce a cohabitation law granting the same rights to couples who live together as those who are married.

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