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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 12-11-22

Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Samaras: I am not anxious about the tranche
  • [02] Suicides rise dramatically in Greece
  • [03] Church of Greece planning collaborations for promotion of pilgrimage tourism

  • [01] Samaras: I am not anxious about the tranche

    AMNA--"I am not anxious about the tranche, but every passing day without a final decision is bad for the economy, the psychology and the markets and affects the Greek people's 'filotimo' (sense of honour, integrity, pride)," Prime Minister Antonis Samaras said in Brussels on Thursday before going into the EU Summit.

    Samaras said that he will not let the Greek people's sacrifices go to waste, underlining "you can be certain of that".

    Moreover, Samaras is to hold separate meetings with European Council president Herman van Rompuy, Eurogroup president Jean-Claude Juncker and the prime ministers of the other EU member states on the sidelines of the EU summit that opens Thursday afternoon in Brussels.

    [02] Suicides rise dramatically in Greece

    AMNA--Suicides in Greece have risen dramatically, with the number of accomplished and attempted suicides climbing to 3,124 nationwide from the beginning of 2009 up to August 23 this year, according to updated figures submitted to parliament on Thursday by the Public Order and Citizens' Protection Ministry.amna

    According to figures from the police headquarters cited by the ministry, suicides rose from 677 in 2009 to 830 in 2010, 927 in 2011 and to 690 in the eight-month period in 2012 up until August 23.

    [03] Church of Greece planning collaborations for promotion of pilgrimage tourism

    AMNA--The Orthodox Church of Greece is preparing collaborations with the official travel bureau of the Vatican and also with the Orthodox Churches of Bulgaria, Cyprus, Romania and Albania with the aim of projecting and promoting pilgrimage tourism, while a relevant agreement has already been signed with the Russian Orthodox Church.

    The Church of Greece in late October signed with the Patriarchate of Moscow and all Russia a cooperation agreement for the development, projection and promotion of pilgrimage tourism, and said at the time it is eyeing a similar collaboration with the Opera Romana Pellegrinaggi (ORP), the Vatican's official bureau of pilgrimage tours.

    Metropolitan Chryssostomos of Dodoni, head of the Synodic Bureau of Pilgrimage Tours, told a conference on Thursday at the 28th Philoxenia international tourism exhibition in Thessaloniki that a cooperation agreement has already been signed with the Moscow Patriarchate's pilgrimage center while similar collaborations were being prepared with the other Orthodox Churches and the Vatican's ORP.amna

    Delivering a greeting on behalf of Archbishop Ieronymos of Athens and All Greece, he explained that the purpose of the accords is a more systematic collaboration and coordination of actions in the field of pilgrimage tours, which he said were much more than the layman's perception of religious tourism, and is founded on four spiritual axes for the promotion of the religious, historic and cultural wealth combined with the development of an ecological conscience.amna

    "It is proof of the role the Church is called on to play in the course of time, which is not limited to unilaterally meeting the religious needs but extends to an overall confrontation of the problems and crises faced by the people, which frequently characterize entire eras and periods of history," Chryssostomos explained.

    He noted that great interest has been expressed by private and public agencies in Greece and abroad for collaboration with the Synodic Bureau for the compilation of multi-lingual, digital (CD and DVD format) publications of all the cultural monuments, pilgrimage sites and monasteries of the Church of Greece, adding that tangible and visible results on this were expected in the near future.amna

    Meanwhile, the establishment of an Athos House office in St. Petersburg that could serve as a center for attracting visitors to pilgrimage destinations in Northern Greece was being discussed between the Russian city's municipal authorities and the Thessaloniki municipal authorities, Thessaloniki Mayor Yiannis Boutaris announced at the conference.

    He also noted that Thessaloniki was already in collaboration with the municipality of Veria for projection of the pilgrimage tour that traces the footsteps of St. Paul in Northern Greece, while he also noted that there are more than 15 UNESCO-designated world heritage monuments in Thessaloniki and its "geographical neighborhood", such as the Mt. Athos all-male monastic community.amna

    Metropolitan Anthimos of Thessaloniki told the conference that more than 200,000 pilgrims from all over Greece and abroad worshipped the Axion Esti icon of the Virgin Mother from Mt. Athos in the space of 21 days from October 13 to November 3 while it was on display at the Saint Demetrios Church in Thessaloniki.amna

    "Pilgrims arrived on charter flights from Russia, by car from the Balkans, and Greeks from all over the country. Many of them waited up to two-and-a-half hours on line to worship the icon," he said, adding that despite the fact that the arrival of the icon in Thessaloniki had not been widely publicized, "the participation of the faithful was unprecedented".

    The icon, which has been in the safekeeping of the Karyes Monastery on Mt. Athos for more than 1,000 years, travelled to Thessaloniki for celebrations marking the 100th anniversary of the city's liberation from Ottoman rule at the request of the local ecclesiastical and city authorities.

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