Announcement and Response to the ABC report

By April 20, 2021News

The article by the ABC “Greek Orthodox Church took tens of millions in rent from aged care home at the centre of deadliest COVID outbreak” saddened the monastery. Unfortunately, it is littered with inaccuracies and an outright attack on Archbishop Makarios.

For instance, the article refers to rent paid over the last 8 years by the St Basil’s Homes for the Aged in Victoria and St Basils in South Australia. This is not news. It was published by The Age in August 2020. Yet the ABC has regurgitated the same story. Why? Because it is likely to be part of a vengeful smear campaign by those who have been displaced by the Archbishop and now the ABC is being used by vested interests to defame an innocent person! Moreover, one should be aware that the rental arrangements pre-dated the arrival of Archbishop Makarios to Australia.

Secondly, the ABC report made reference to the purchase of a permanent residence for the current and future Archbishops of Australia. It was not news either. It was mentioned in March and June last year. So why has the ABC published this again?

Actually, the purchase of the residence by the Greek Orthodox Church in Australia was done on the advice of the Property Council of the Church. Indeed, it is the first time the Church has sought to purchase a residence fitting for an Archbishop.

Furthermore, the ABC claims that His Eminence’s vestments are valued at $30,000 each and that they are unlike the ‘conservative black cotton garments worn by his predecessor, the late Archbishop Stylianos.’ This is far from true!

Moreover, the late Archbishop Stylianos, like all Orthodox hierarchs wore the same vestments. Anybody who knows about vestments would be aware that the price is an absolute exaggeration. A simple Google search would show that these vestments can be purchased for less than a third of this price. Besides vestments are personal items either paid for by the Archbishop or are gifted to him. They are not paid for by the Church. So what is the point the ABC is trying to make?  Yet again it seems that through the ABC someone has an ulterior motive.

Finally, as for the Holden Caprice mentioned in the report, this was the vehicle used for the late Archbishop Stylianos. It is about 7 years old and always had personalised number plates. So what is the ABC trying to say?

Is the ABC being used as a catalyst, with the aim to destroy a popular Archbishop, who is not afraid to reform the Church in Australia and to voice his opinion on issues that the Church advocates? Hence, the ABC is being used in a sense to defame. Thankfully, time will show the shallowness and inaccuracy of the comments made.

We urge the faithful not to be influenced by the ABC report and to embrace the truth and show their support for the Orthodox Church and His Eminence.

Fr Eusebios,

Pantanassa Monastery

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