In Greece, Church and State get a velvet divorce

The historic agreement between Greek Prime Minister, Alexis Tsipras, and Ieronymos II, the Archbishop of Athens and All Greece, means rationalisation of State-Church relations.

The agreement is a historic compromise between the Church and State on ecclesiastical property and its distinct roles, meaning that after 79 years, the issue of ecclesiastical property has been settled.

Tsipras and Ieronymos, in statements they made after the meeting, said that it was decided that the priests should be excluded from the salary of civil servants, while the State assumed an annual fee to the Church, recognising that in 1939 it acquired property at a price that falls short of its value. For its part, the Church removes its claims and undertakes the salaries of the priests.

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