Re: The Pope's visit to Greece

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Posted by Niko on May 06, 2001 at 21:23:22:

In Reply to: The Pope's visit to Greece posted by Somebody on May 02, 2001 at 14:47:50:

I have read many of the messages regarding this topic so I will respond to different fragments of various ones. For the person who mentioned that the Greeks believe their form of Christianity is the best. Why wouldn't they? I don't think I have come across anyone who will tell you their chosen method for living life is second best to someone elses. If I did, I would tell them why aren't you pursuing the best choice (this is excluding those people who are not allowed to pursue their interest because of an authoritarian regime or similiar oppressive circumstances.) The Greeks strong opposition should not be shocking, all of us take views of what is acceptable or not. For example, why the hell do western feminists have such a negative view of womens rights in the Middle East (we are not talking about Afghanistan) such as in Iran. Have you ever asked women from this area how they feel about womens rights in America, many feel women in the West have been exploited and had their rights limited. Did you know that in the early 1920s egyptian women fought hard to ban headscarves, and won, only to have them brought back by later egyptian womens movements to show opposition to Western cultural penetration of their societies. But we in the rich west (catholic that is) are civil, calm, and have the right answers, so we just don't understand why these fanatic, racist, greeks are making such a big fuss. We all have very specific views on what is acceptable and what is the "ORTHO" way. As for the person who said that the Greek Church has alot of influence in Greek politics I don't think if their bargaining power was so great that the Pope would have been coming in the first place. Yes, the Chuch can get backing from the people, and the people can push forward their demands, but it has no official role in the institutional governmental policy making process outside of religious policy formulation. There is a distinct difference here. For the person who talked about Greek Christian and Turkish Muslim tensions. This is such a cliche argument. It has gotten way too old. There is Greek and Turkish tension. Greece has very good relations with many countries who have large muslim minorities. Greece has continously and strongly supported the right of the Kurds for self determination, as well as the Palestinians. Finally, the person who said that the Pope was a primary agent in bringing democracy to Eastern Europe they have no perception of the political, economic, and historic realities of those people. I don't think that when the Romanians overthrew Ceasescu they were motivated by the Pope. I think it probably had to do with the oppressive policies the Ceasescu regime placed on its people, as well as the dire economic situation of the country. I actually think that it is disgusting to say that the move towards stable democracies in Eastern Europe had to do with an old priest. What about the EU (then the EC)and the enlargement process to the east, the domestic situation in Russia,... but most importantly what about the initiative of the people of Eastern Europe to bring change. I think that it is a romanticized picture of an old frail religious figure bringing the fruits of the civilized world to help the lost souls. God knows, the Eastern Europeans might have still been sitting around pitying their existence if the Pope hadn't come along. By the way for those people that have so much animosity towards the Greeks etc. why do you preoccupy yourselves with greek related topics and a Greek message board. Maybe there is some truth in what others have said on this board about the supremacy of Greek culture, because Greek culture seems to have commanded a great deal of your attention.

Ciao! (Lookie there I used an italian word, I guess I am not so racist after all. But I will wait and see what you all have to say, because I do need to form my Greek identity based off of your opinions.)

: I realize that most of the people who frequent this board are either Greeks living abroad or people looking for help regarding their homework or recipes or penpals etc. I know that very few of the participants here actually live in Greece and of those who do, are more likely than not, Greek.

: As a non-Greek living in Greece I've been following the reactions of the Greeks regarding the upcoming papal visit. I watch the news and hear Orthodox Christians condemn the Pope and refer to him as the AntiChrist. For weeks now there have been endless debates over whether or not the Pope should come and how he should be received. It amazes me that the Orthodox Church has such strong feelings against the Pope and his visit.

: Perhaps some of you know what I'm talking about and would care to discuss it.

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