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Greek Orthodox Bishop Arrested for Keeping Church Open for Worship

When the government oversteps its authority, interfering with free and public worship, we know a time of persecution has come

Originally appeared at: Union of Orthodox Journalists

Metropolitan Seraphim of Kythira is accused of the fact that during the service the doors of the temple were open to all comers, and the bell rang before the service.

On March 21, 2020, it became known that the mayor of the Greek city of Kythira, Stratos Harhalakis, ordered the arrest of Metropolitan Seraphim (Stergiulis) of Kythira and Antikythera for performing the Divine Liturgy, reports Lifo.gr publication.

According to the publication, Metropolitan Seraphim of Kythira was arrested after having performed the worship in the Cathedral of the Holy Cross Exaltation, contrary to the decision of the authorities that banned all religious rites in the country due to the coronavirus.

Moreover, as emphasized in the publication, the doors of the temple were open to all comers, and the bell rang before the service.

The decision to arrest the metropolitan "disturbed public opinion and wakened the mayor’s anger." He stated that "no one can be above the law."

The metropolitan, arriving at the island’s police station, told the police that he had not yet received the encyclical sent by Archbishop Hieronymos. In the end, the hierarch was released by order of the general official but proceedings were initiated against him.

Earlier, the UOJ wrote that due to the coronavirus, Greek authorities banned all services, but the Synod of the Church of Greece decided that Sunday services would continue, albeit in an abridged form.