February 12, 1955

BISHOP AGAINST BOUZOUKI: Agrinion, 11 – Metropolitan Ierotheos of Aitoloacarnania has issued a circular (…) ordering that in the event of an appearance by bouzouki groups, local priests should attempt to drive them out of the community, because «they use corrupted and lewd young women who appear in a state of undress.» (…) If the priests’ efforts prove fruitless, then the deacon should toll the church bell for the duration of the group’s performance. The bishop’s instructions were followed to the letter in Neohori yesterday, where a bouzouki group with a young woman singer appeared at the Karabini restaurant. The village priest, Mr Karatzoyiannis, asked the restaurant owner to remove the group. (…) When he refused, the deacon began tolling the church bell and villagers flocked to the church to find out what was happening. There, the other village priest, Valanos, told them that «today the village’s morals died and tomorrow the funeral will take place at the Karabini taverna.» Meanwhile local police officers rushed to the church, brought the deacon down from the belltower and locked him up for the night on charges of disturbing the peace.

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