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Bishop Gregory Attends Archon Conference on Religious Freedom in Berlin, Germany

At the invitation of the Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, His Grace, Bishop Gregory of Nyssa attended the Archon Second International Conference on Religious Freedom: "Tearing Down Walls: Achieving Religious Equality in Turkey." which took place in Berlin, Germany on December 4-5, 2013.

Politicians, diplomats, human rights lawyers and advocates, scholars, religious leaders, journalists and members of minority communities came together to see how the walls of intolerance and misunderstanding can come tumbling down, and a new future for all people of goodwill can begin.

Professor Ilber Ortayli, Fatma Benli and His Eminence, Metropolitan Elpidophoros of Bursa were among the featured speakers and panelists at the 2nd Archon International Conference on Religious Freedom that took place at the Adlon Hotel in Berlin, Germany.

Professor Ilber Ortayli is a leading Ottoman historian and professor of history at Galatasarary University in Istanbul and at Bilkent University in Ankara. He has been the head of Istanbul's Topkapi Museum since 2005.

Fatma Benli is a Lawyer, human rights activist and Turkey's representative to the International Jurists Union. In a recent publication by Georgetown University, Benli was listed as one of the world's 500 most influential Muslims.

His Eminence Metropolitan Elpidophoros of Bursa is the Abbot of the Holy Patriarchal and Stavropegial Monastery of the Holy Trinity on the Island of Halki. He is the former Chief Secretary of the Holy Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate.

Ortayli, Benli and Metropolitan Elpidophoros were joined by former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who addressed the Conference via video, along with 35 other world-renowned speakers and panelists from the interfaith, diplomatic, journalistic, legal and academic communities.

The conference was organized and hosted by the Order of Saint Andrew the Apostle, Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in America in cooperation with the Patriarchal Liaison Office of the Orthodox Church to the European Union. The coordination of the local political and church partners was undertaken by the Greek Orthodox Metropolitanate of Germany with the blessings of His Eminence Metropolitan Augoustinos.

View Conference Website Here:

Posted photos are courtesy of Dimitrios Panagos and are subject to copyright restrictions.

View Additional Photos: photos.archons.org/index.php?collection_id=54080694-72157...
Bishop Gregory engages in conversation with Archons and other conference attendees. (Photo by D. Panagos)
Bishop Gregory with His Eminence, Metropolitan Elpidophoros of Bursa, the Abbot of the Holy Patriarchal and Stavropegial Monastery of the Holy Trinity on the Island of Halki. (Photo by D. Panagos)

Bishop Gregory with Metropolitans Augoustinos of Germany and Nicholas of Detroit, along with Diocesan Archon, John Halecky, Jr of St. Nicholas Church of Elizabeth, NJ. (Photo by D. Panagos)
Bishop Gregory with fellow Hierarchs at the welcoming reception. (Photo by D. Panagos)
Bishop Gregory enjoys dinner with fellow Hierarchs of the Ecumenical Patriarchate and other guests. (Photo by D. Panagos)
Archbishop Demetrios of America addressed the participants at the opening of the conference. (Photo by D. Panagos)
Metropolitan Augoustinos offered words of welcome to the conference attendees on behalf of the clergy and faithful of the Metropolis of Germany. (Photo by D. Panagos)
The National Commander of the Archons, Dr. Anthony Limberakis offered words of welcome. (Photo by D. Panagos)
Metropolitan Emmanuel of France. (Photo by D. Panagos)
Panelists at the opening day of the conference. (Photo by D. Panagos)
Panel discussion. (Photo by D. Panagos)
Conference participants. (Photo by D. Panagos)
Bishop Gregory and Metropolitan Alexios of Atlanta listen intently to one of the speakers. (Photo by D. Panagos)