On Sunday, May 16, the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago, the Hellenic Society of Constantinople and the Archons of the Order of Saint Andrew from the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago hosted a town hall webinar via Zoom to commemorate the Fall of Constantinople. For those who missed the event, the video is available online for viewing at archons.org/video.
The Zoom webinar titled “Hagia Sophia: 1453 and 2021: From Past Conquest to Current Captivity” featured four guest panelists, who provided unique viewpoints on this momentous event in history.
- Dr. Alexandros Kyrou, Professor of History and Director of the Program in East European and Russian Studies at Salem State University in Salem, Massachusetts, provided a historical perspective on the Fall of Constantinople from the Turkish standpoint.
- Dr. Elizabeth Prodromou, Visiting Associate Professor of Conflict Resolution at The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University where she directs the Initiative on Religion, Law, and Diplomacy, delved into Turkey's weaponization of their cultural heritage.
- Lena Argiri, Washington D.C. Correspondent for Greek Public Broadcasting ERT, discussed how the media in Turkey and internationally has covered the conversion of Hagia Sophia into a mosque.
- Dr. Anthony J. Limberakis, the National Commander of the Order of Saint Andrew the Apostle, Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, spoke on why this event should re-strengthen our efforts and embolden us to fight for religious freedoms for minorities in Asia Minor and the Ecumenical Patriarchate.
Metropolis of Chicago Archon Regional Commanders Gus M. Pablecas and John G. Manos directed the question-and-answer period that followed the presentation.
“We were excited to offer viewers worldwide the opportunity to participate in our annual Fall of Constantinople event with us via Zoom Webinar,” said Manos and Pablecas. “Through the event, we provided a glimpse into our Greek and Orthodox history in Constantinople (modern day Istanbul), and hoped to inspire laypeople to take up the cause associated with the diminishing Christian presence in Turkey. Unfortunately, many around the world are unaware of the issues facing Christians in Turkey today and, in particular, of the issues facing our Ecumenical Patriarchate in Turkey.”
This is the 40th year that the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago, the Metropolis of Chicago Archons of the Order of Saint Andrew the Apostle, and the Hellenic Society of Constantinople have collaborated on an event to commemorate the Fall of Constantinople.
FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago, visit www.chicago.goarch.org, the Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate visit www.archons.org, the Hellenic Society of Constantinople visit www.hellenicsocietyofconstantinople.org.