Greece: Bishop condemned for calling Islam a "catastrophic worship"
Bishop Seraphim of Piraeus also had a lot to say about Jews recently.
The government on Tuesday (January 11th) condemned anti-Islamic comments by a senior Orthodox official after protests from Greece's Muslim community. Commenting on a bombing in Egypt on New Year's Day, Greek Bishop Seraphim of Piraeus described Islam as a "catastrophic worship" that is incompatible with Greece's Constitution.
Government spokesperson George Petalotis said the bishop's remarks "foment racial and religious hatred".
Greek newspaper Kathimerini adds:
The Muslim Union of Greece yesterday condemned comments by Bishop Seraphim of Piraeus claiming that Islamic rhetoric had provoked last week’s massacre at a Coptic Church in Egypt and said Greece’s Muslims were open to religious dialogue.
“We must protect our society from interchanges that undermine its foundations. We as Muslims are always open to interfaith dialogue... so as to make loud and clear to everyone what the great faith of Islam stands for,” the union said in a press release.
It was responding to a statement written by the bishop last week, describing the attack in the Egyptian port of Alexandria as “a gruesome crime... by the Islamists [which] reveals clearly the truth that has been deviously hidden under the pacifist preaching of so-called interreligious dialogues.” Seraphim also calls for the revocation of a law allowing the construction of a mosque in Athens, describing it as a “religious aberration [that] would act as dynamite for social cohesion and peace as the main objective of this false religion is its prevalence through violence.”