From the National Herald
By Theodore Kalmoukos
BOSTON — Metropolitan Paisios of Tyana and Bishop Vikentios of Apameia are officially out as abbot and deputy abbot of the St. Irene Chrysovalantou Sacred and Patriarchal Monastery in Astoria, NY.
Bishop Ilia of Philomelion was named acting abbot while a group of three monks have been sent from Mt. Athos to man the monastery.
The decision was made at a meeting of the Holy and Great Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate on Thurs. Dec. 2, 2010, following a report submitted by a patriarchal delegation which had come to investigate the monastery last month.
Metropolitan Paisios had resigned from his post back in October, following public criticism made against him by Bishop Vikentios in an interview with The National Herald.
Bishop Ilia of Philomelion also presides over the Albanian Orthodox Diocese of America.
During a phone call placed by TNH to Metropolitan Paisios at his home in Athens, the latter hung up the phone as soon as the newspaper identified itself. He subsequently refused to pick up the phone.
Bishop Vikentios told TNH “no comment from me, thank you.”
Both Metropolitan Paisios and Bishop Vikentios have been instructed by the Holy Synod to remain outside of the United States from hereon in. Sources tell TNH that if either of them defies the decision or attempts to involve themselves in the affairs of the monastery or the Church in general, they will be subject to punishments foreseen by canon law.
Bishop Ilia of Philomelion
Bishop Ilia Katre, who is of Albanian origin, was born in Sault Ste Marie, Michigan. He mastered both the Greek and Albanian languages while still in high school. Bishop Ilia graduated from Hellenic College and Seminary at Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Theological School in Brookline, Massachusetts, with a Bachelor in Theology Degree in 1961. He was ordained to the priesthood in Boston in 1962 where he served at Holy Trinity Albanian Orthodox Church until August 31, 1983. He pursued advanced degrees including a Masters of Divinity before being assigned as Dean of Student Affairs at Hellenic College and Holy Cross School of Theology. He remained there until 1988. He also held the position as Vicar General of the Albanian Orthodox Church of America until May 2002.
The Holy and Sacred Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate elected Bishop Ilia Katre as Titular Bishop of Philomelion to lead the Albanian Orthodox Diocese of American in 2002, following the passing of his beloved wife, Helen. They were married for 39 years before her death in 2001. Bisop Ilia has two children, Sotir Mark and Eugenia, and three grandchildren.