Lack of interest blocks meeting of religions

The Church of Greece yesterday postponed indefinitely a meeting of representatives of the three monotheistic religions – Judaism, Christianity and Islam – because of an apparent lack of interest from fellow Orthodox churches. Archbishop Christodoulos, who suggested the meeting in the wake of the September 11 terrorist attacks in the United States, proposed cancellation of the events to the Holy Synod yesterday. Another concern was the possibility that the discussion «on terrorism» would not lead to a conclusion. The patriarchs of Alexandria and Romania both said they were unable to come. Archbishop Anastasios of Albania said that he was already committed to something else. Ecumenical Patriarch Vartholomaios, who ended a three-day visit to the Greek town of Volos yesterday, told Christodoulos that he was unable to change his schedule. He said that he could not change a meeting of the Hierarchy in Istanbul that would clash with the Athens conference scheduled for September 1-3. A similar conference called by Vartholomaios – and held in Brussels in December – condemned terrorism.

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