15 years before...


A Short Biography of His Eminence Metropolitan Ignatius

Thursday, 9 May, 2013


The Metropolitan of Demetrias and Almyros His Eminence Ignatius (Panagiotis was his name before becoming a monk) Georgakopoulos was born in Athens in 1956.  He studied at the Theological School of the University of Athens, was ordained a deacon in 1976 and a priest in 1983, and was given the title of Archimandrite by His Eminence Metropolitan of Piraeus Kallinikos.  He served as the Chancellor of the Metropolis of Piraeus from 1984 until he was elected as the Metropolitan of Demetrias in 1998.


As Chancellor, he workedespecially with young people.  He organized and was in charge of the Youth Office of the Metropolis of Piraeus as well as developing camp and other pastoral programs for the youth.  He also served as the Vice-President of "Syndesmos," the world brotherhood of Orthodox Youth.


He helped open the Church to the press through several endeavors such as publishing the magazines "Piraiki Ecclesia" and "Elpidofora Neiata", organizing and managing the radiostation Piraiki Ecclesia 91.2 FM and through ET1's televised program "Arhontariki," which he has hosted from 1992 until today.  During this time he also worked on a televised program of EPA-5 on the emigrant Greeks from all over the world.  He also served as the representative to the press for the late Archbishop of Athens and all Greece Christodoulos.


As a person with great interest in the relationship between Church and society as well as science, he served as a member of the National Board of Organ Transplants and has taken part in many medical and scientific conferences, setting forth the position of Orthodox Theology.  He was also a founding member of the Syndesmos of Scientists of Piraeus.


On October 10, 1998, He was ordained as the Metropolitan of Demetrias and Almyros by the late Archbishop of Athens Christodoulos and was enthroned on November 14, 1998.  From the moment of his election as Metropolitan of Demetrias and Almyros, he has continued the immense work of his predecessor Archbishop Christodoulos in ministries involving youth, charity, and missions, while taking a series of new initiatives, which contributed to the on-going dialogue between the Church and the local community.


Some of those initiatives include:


1.      The founding of a schoolwith a Nursery, Kindergarten, Elementary, Middle and High School levels with the name AGIOS APOSTOLOS O NEOS (St. Apostolos the New). With this school the Church proposed its own approach to educating our youth, combining the government's program with the morals of our traditions.

2.      The establishment of the Thessalia Conference Center.

3.      The Non-profit organization LEITOYRGI IGEIAS TIS AGAPIS ("Health Workers of Charity"), which organizes medical and social programs in connection with the Orthodox Churches of the Balkans, Eastern Europe, and Africa.  Doctors, nurses, and clerics volunteer their services to people who have needs, showing the compassionate side of the Church which embraces humanity throughout the world.

4.      The Volos Academy for Theological Studies, which serves to testify to Orthodox theology in the modern world, without fear, but with full awareness of the truth of our faith.

5.      The establishment of continuing educational programs for our priests, Church laity, parents, and educators, both for their personal spiritual developmentas well as to Christians with a dynamic and active presence in the modern world.

6.      Support for specific groups of people with the establishment of the House for Alzheimer patients, the soup kitchen DOS IMIN SIMERON ("Give us today"), and the social integration of economic immigrants.

7.      Inspiring volunteerism and the involvement of the laity in the life of the local Church.

8.      Alongside all of these initiatives, he also servesas the president of the Greek Biblical Society, Vice-President of the World Biblical Society, member of the Synodal Committee for Inter-Orthodox and Inter-Christian Relations, as well as a member of the National Education Board, serving as the representative of the Church of Greece.