Greek Orthodox Bishop, Metropolit Seraphim of Piraeus has caused controversy by urging Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to convert to Orthodoxy with Russian President Vladimir Putin as his godfather. And no, it’s not a joke.
In a 37-page letter to Erdogan written in Greek, Metropolit Seraphim asks the Turkish leader to denounce his Islamic faith and be baptised in the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople.
“If you want to save yourself and your family you should convert to Greek Orthodox Church, the only real faith,” Seraphim writes, reports Keep Talking Greece.
“We propose and we advise you to come to the arms of the Greek Orthodox Church before the end of your life on earth.
“Otherwise, you will unfortunately find yourself, your family and your people in the same place where Allah, Muhammad and his followers are, ie. in the place of suffering, eternal and unending hell.”
He calls on Erdogan to “repent, cry, be humble and believe in Christ,” and claims that “the Holy Trinity of God will open the arms for you”.
If Erdogan is to heed the Metropolit’s advice, he says that the Orthodox faithful on earth and in heaven will rejoice and “the angels in heaven after your enter the true Church!”
In the extensive letter, the Bishop also analyses Greece’s 400 years under Ottoman rule, the Treaty of Lausanne, Turkey’s recent history and the country’s efforts to join the European Union.
Despite concluding his letter with “honour, respect and honest brother love”, it contains a number of remarks in which he insults the Koran, the Prophet Muhammad, and describes Islam as a sect rather than a religion.
To read the letter in full, visit the Holy Metropolis of Piraeus’ official website http://www.imp.gr/