(Regarding the Committee set up on Mount Athos issues)
Â· â€œMount Athos is not just the Vatopedi issue â€“ we mustnâ€™t forget that. One has nothing to do with the other.â€
Â· â€œIn these talks, we ascertained that there are a lot of issues that concern Mount Athos: requests, thoughts, concerns that were expressed and that go beyond the role of the Foreign Ministry, which has Mount Athos in its portfolio. There are issues related to the Education Ministry, the Ministry of Health, the Finance Ministry and many other Ministries.â€ â€œAnd that is why we have this Committee, which is being chaired by Minister of State Pamboukis, who is coordinating this effort
Â· â€œFor us, for our government, one thing is crystal clear, and it is a very important principle: transparency for everything, transparency in all procedures. And I think that such a Committee for cooperation with Mount Athos can only help transparency.â€
Read the complete interview HERE.
When I visited the PM in 1997 I knew already from Reinhold Zwerger (the source I have forgotten; maybe an article or interview) that there was only one monk from the Ukraine living there. The tiny and very friendly hermit welcomed me, gave me hot coffe (in a metal mug !) with a piece of very hard bread. He confirmed he was the only inhabitant of the PM. On my question if I could visit the large church he responded that the abbot of Panteleimonos possed the keys. After giving me two large tomatoes our ways separated.
As a student of Athonias, we visited Paleomonastiron annually on the 1st of May public holiday for a full day excursion. I will email you some photos from 1992 or 1993. Every year we would conduct vespers in the main church of St. Paneleimon. It seems as though much work has been done since those days on some of the buildings and roads etc. During those years monks would come from the Rossikon to open the main church for us. Nearby is the cell of St. Silouan (if Im not mistaken) which we also visited as well as the artificial lake which back in those days was full of goldfish.