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Holy Executive of Mt. Athos regarding pandemic-related media claims: ‘Isolated voices of certain monks don’t reflect Holy Community’

The administrative body (Iera Epistasia or Holy Executive) composed of representatives of all of Mount Athos’ monasteries, on Tuesday issued an official response to various media reports of late claiming a surge in the number of Covid-19 infections and serious cases on the Holy Community.

The statement first clarifies that “isolated voices” of certain monks, no matter where they may come from, do not represent the entire Holy Community.

Additionally, members of the administrative body of the semi-autonomous Orthodox monastic community of northern Greece emphasized that all necessary measures have been taken to deal with the pandemic, always in cooperation with the Civil Governor of Mount Athos, Athanasios Martinos, and his office. The latter, as the statement added, “bore the entire weight of dealing with the pandemic on Mount Athos.”

The main points cited by the Holy Executive state that law enforcement authorities are executing their duties in an exemplary manner, without omissions, and without being influenced by the elders.

Additionally, the Holy Community’s civil administration fully respects the personal data of monks, in general, and specifically regarding their personal medical records, such as vaccinations. Along those lines, the statement added, civil administrators respect the private life and views, including each monk’s religious principles.

Finally, the Holy Executive stressed that its members have not discerned any “anti-vaccination” propaganda being circulated within, and amongst the monasteries.


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