Τρίτη, 13 Οκτωβρίου 2015

An Orthodox Archbishop exile to the Seychelles


A part from our post Orthodox Mission in Tropical Africa (& the decolonization of Africa) 

Makarios III and Robert F. Wagner NYWTS cropped.jpg
[...] A similar struggle against colonial rule in Cyprus was being led by Archbishop Makarios, who in March 1956 was exiled to the Seychelles. In April 1957 he was released, and returned via Kenya, where people were still engaged in the struggle against colonial rule. He celebrated the Divine Liturgy in the Orthodox cathedral in Nairobi, and preached against colonialism (Lemopoulos 1993:122). This was a tremendous encouragement to the leaders of the Kenya independence struggle, many of whom (with the Orthodox clergy) were still in prison at the time. It also caused consternation among the British authorities, and questions were asked in the British parliament about why Archbishop Makarios had been allowed to preach in Kenya.
A close friendship developed between Archbishop Makarios and Jomo Kenyatta, the future president of Kenya. Cyprus became independent in 1960, and Kenya in 1963, and in 1970 Archbishop Makarios, the first President of Cyprus, was invited to Kenya on a state visit by President Kenyatta of Kenya. Archbishop Makarios, as well as being President of Cyprus, was head of the autocephalous Church of Cyprus, and as such had no ecclesiastical jurisdiction in East Africa. But though he was visiting Kenya in his capacity of head of state, he also met church leaders, and visited Orthodox churches in various parts of Kenya.
Archbishop Makarios was struck by the poverty of the church and the people, and wrote to the Patriarchate of Alexandria offering to help. President Kenyatta provided a site for an Orthodox seminary at Riruta, on the outskirts of Nairobi, and Archbishop Makarios raised the money for the buildings. In 1971 he visited Kenya again to lay the foundation stone for the new seminary, though the patriarchate was not in a position to staff it and utilise it until 1982. At Kagira he baptised 5000 people, and at Nyeri he baptised 5000 more. These were both places where Bishop Alexander had visited and taught nearly 40 years previously. [...]
For several years there was no Metropolitan, but Bishop Anastasios Yannoulatos was appointed acting Metropolitan. Bishop Anastasios is one of the foremost Orthodox missiologists of the twentieth century, and since the 1950s had been encouraging a revival of interest in mission in the Orthodox Church.

The seminary in Nairobi opened in Bishop Anastasios’s time, and it began with 19 students. It was originally only for students from East Africa, but in 1995 it began taking students from other African countries as well, and there were 42 students from seven countries – Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Cameroun, Nigeria, Zimbabwe and Madagascar. The aim is that the seminary should be a pan-African institution, and should foster a sense of unity in the Patriarchate. [...] 

See also

The Orthodox Church in Kenya & the Orthodox Patriarchal Ecclesiastical School of Makarios III  
The Life & Legacy of the pioneer missionary Chrysostomos Papasarantopoulos

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