When the country is hit by an unprecedented crisis and is dealing with a threat that challenges its capabilities, everyone has a responsibility to step up and do their bit. The Church of Greece is no exception.
Inviting the flock to gather in enclosed spaces and conducting holy communion using a chalice are clear public health risks amid the coronavirus outbreak. Older and vulnerable individuals are at increased risk of severe illness. Concerned about stirring reactions, experts are occasionally afraid to issue a clear warning. At the same time, politicians indulge in populism even though human lives are quite literally at stake.
Countries with a strong ecclesiastical tradition, such as Italy, have already introduced measures that appear self-evident in the effort to curb the spread of the virus.
Here in Greece, Archbishop Ieronymos is a responsible leader with a strong sense of social sensibility and is in a position to ward off reactionary forces – and he must do so.
In these difficult times, a large number of Greeks and others are turning to the Church for consolation and support. However, they also need inspired leaders who can live up to the challenges of today’s world.
The Church leadership has to do what is right. By doing so, it will protect the most vulnerable members of society and convey a message of responsibility.