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Castro Not Member of the Order of St. Andrew

Contrary to widely circulated reports, His All Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew did not confer the Order of St. Andrew upon President of Cuba Fidel Castro, nor did he present him with the Cross of St. Andrew. According to Dr. Anthony J. Limberakis, National Commander of the Order of St. Andrew, who accompanied the Patriarch on his recently concluded historic trip to Cuba, �His All Holiness gave to the Cuban leader a simple cross bearing the seal of the Patriarchate, as an expression of gratitude to the people of Cuba for the return and reconstruction of St. Nicholas Cathedral in Havana.� The Patriarch traveled from Constantinople (Istanbul) to Cuba last month for the consecration of the Cathedral, which took place on Sunday, January 25, 2004. �The Order of St. Andrew is bestowed upon individuals of proven Orthodox Christian character, after a process of nomination and comprehensive review,� Dr. Limberakis continued. �Fidel Castro, despite his government�s recent act of generosity to our Orthodox Church, does not espouse the Christian faith, and was never considered for this high honor.�

Contact: Anthony J. Limberakis, MD
Archon Aktouarios & National Commander
212/570-3550


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