On Thursday, September 30th / October 13th 2011, His Eminence Minister of Greece Mr. Stavros Lambrinidis being on a visit to the state of Jordan after his visit to Egypt and on his way to Lebanon met with His Beatitude our Father and Patriarch of Jerusalem Theophilos at Intercontinental Hotel in Amman.

During this visit the Minister of Foreign Affairs was escorted by a seven-member delegation from the Greek Ministry of National Education and Religious Affairs, a member of whom was Mr. Themistoklis Dimidis who had served as the Greek Consul General in Jerusalem years ago, Representatives of the General Council of Foreign Affairs , economic operators and journalists.

In this meeting, His Beatitude was escorted by the Elder Chief, Archbishop of Constantina, Aristarchos, Archimandrite f. Hieronymus and Archimandrite f. Philoumenos.

In the beginning of the above mentioned meeting the Minister discussed with His Beatitude in private regarding issues of the Middle East, the Council of Churches in the Middle East and the Patriarchate of Jerusalem, having His ecclesiastical jurisdiction in three political jurisdictions, Jordan, Israel, and Palestinian Autonomy and attending to the well-being of His congregation and the Christians in the Middle East and contributing the utmost concerning the peacekeeping process, through His pacificatory and conciliatory stance and life as well.

After this private meeting followed a discussion in a wider circle involving all the members of the Minister’s escort as well as the members accompanying His Beatitude.

This discussion revolved around the importance of the Most Holy Shrines, which for Orthodoxy and Romiosini have rightfully been kept and protected by the Patriarchate and until today have attracted numerous pious pilgrims as well as followers of religious tourism and the attention of the politicians due to Their importance and Their place in the ever-forming political situation in Jerusalem.

This meeting and this discussion has certainly constituted a step forward as for the cooperation between the Patriarchate and Greece, as a successor of the Byzantine Empire for the support of the very ancient and inalienable rights of Othodoxy in the Holy Land.

Residing in the Metropolitan Church of the Patriarchate in Amman, His Beatitude participated the following Friday, October 1st /14th 2011, in the Divine Liturgy celebrated in the Metropolitan chapel of St. Nektarios and preached the numerous congregation regarding the holy work of the Church through Its sacraments where our Lord Jesus Christ is invisibly however actually present.

Chief Secretary’s Office

(translated from the original document in Greek by Mrs. Irini Valasi)