"Favourite Statues:Arcdhbishop Damaskinos Papandreo" Top 5 Page for this destination Europe Things to Do Tip by Maryimelda
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The statue of Archbishop Damaskinos Papandreou in front of the Athens Cathedral is a particular favourite of mine. This man was a true hero who showed courage beyond measure when he championed the Romaniote Jews in Athens during the German ocupation in WWII. He arranged for Jews in danger to be issued with false certificates of Baptism for their safety and he asked that all Orthodox families hide Jews in their homes. He publicly denounced the treatment of the Jews as he insisted that all Greek citizens should be treated equally by the occupying forces regardless of race or creed. When threatened with execution by a firing squad himself, he made the famous statement which is engraved on the statue,
? According to the traditions of the Greek Orthodox Church, our prelates are hanged, not shot. Please respect our traditions!?
He was instrumental in saving the lives of about 10,000 Jews. He died in 1949 aged 58 years.
"The Archbishop was being boldly sarcastic, as he was referring to the lynching and hanging of Patriarch Gregory V of Constantinople by a Turkish mob in 1821, the point being made that the SS commander would act in a similarly barbaric fashion if he were to carry out his threat."
Read more: http://members.virtualtourist.com/m/d7596/6833c/4/#ixzz1I2IErBJr
Address: Metropoli Square
Directions: Right in front of the Athens Cathedral
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