Protest from Orthodox Clergymen and Monks against the support by the Mayor of Thessaloniki to LGBT movement
May 13, 2015. The Convention of Orthodox clergymen and monks (important professors of the faculty of Theology of Athens and of Salonika and significant priests and monks) wrote a letter to Mount Athos asking from the monks to demand from the mayor of Salonika Mr. I. Boutaris not to organise this year the “gay pride” as reports the website impantokratoros.gr. If they cannot persuade him the authors of the letter propose to the representatives of Mount Athos to condemn the passion of homosexuality or to send to the mayor a document, which will not allow him to enter anymore in Mount Athos. If it is not possible, the monks must find a way to dismiss him from the presidency of the “Mount Athos Centre”. The signers of the letter also express their annoyance as they saw that the monks attributed a great honour to the mayor during his recent visit in Mount Athos, while at the same time they know well his activities and his support to the movement of homosexuality.
The mayor of Thessaloniki (Greece) Mr. I. Boutaris is the president of the institution “Mount Athos Centre” (Agioritiki Estia).
It is an urban-non-profit organization, founded in 2000 by the Municipality of Thessaloniki in collaboration with the Holy community of Mount Athos and it essentially forms the institutional continuation and the natural “evolution” of the monumental exhibition “Treasures of Mount Athos”, held in 1997, within the framework and under the auspices of “Thessaloniki: Cultural Capital of Europe”.
It is run by a governing body of seven Legislative council members presided by the mayor of Thessaloniki (ex officio). Also the council has an honorary president–Overseer of Mount Athos in office. As for the other six members of the council, three are appointed by the Council of the municipality of Thessaloniki and three are representatives from the Holy community of Mount Athos. The position of vice-president is held by one of the council members from the Holy Mountain. In the event of the absence of the president, he is represented by one of the appointed members from the city council of Thessaloniki.
Mr. Boutaris organises “gay pride” rallies in Salonika since 2012. This year he is ready to organise one more again. His action is coming in contradiction with the administrative duties that he has as President of the “Mount Athos Centre”.