Immigration laws concerning the Holy Mountain
Posted 30 July 2006 - 04:57 PM
While reading this passage today, I began to wonder about Greek immigration laws. Is there a "legal" process involved in immigrating permanently to the Holy Mountain? Must one obtain legal permission from the Government of Greece first? Or is this a decision left solely to the holy Elders themselves?
Posted 21 November 2006 - 09:26 AM
Having lived on the Holy Mountain, I have some advice which I trust will be of some use to you.
The first piece of advice I can offer is fervent prayer.
Prayer to Christ and your patron Saint, to discern if this is the path our Lord wishes you to follow. As the Holy Mountain is the 'Garden of the Virgin Mary', do pray especially to Her regarding all your concerns; worries, hopes, etc.
It would be good, even essential, to visit Mount Athos first to get a feel of the monastic life there.
Also, you will need to learn Greek. You can start with demotiki and work onwards. There are monks on the Mountain who speak English and other languages, but by far, anywhere you go in the Orthodox monastic world, Greek is the lingua franca amongst monastics.
The tradition is to visit the monasteries, kellies, sketes, hermitages etc, and God will tell you where to lay your foundation.
If, indeed, Athos is calling you, you will need your Spiritual Father's blessing, whom I would assume is your Parish Priest, and the blessing of your Bishop (this is absolutely necessary if one is a Priest, but even as a layman it is a good idea). The more blessings the better!
All novices who become monks on Athos automatically assume Greek nationality. I am Canadian and we are allowed two 'citizenships' - it may be the same for Americans. However, monks leave all for Christ, so family, home, country etc, no longer have the same content as they do for those not called to monastic life.
Perhaps you have already visited monasteries in the States - if not, this would be a good idea. I personally am not familiar with the monastic landscape in America, but others in the Community could be of assistance in this matter.
May our Lord and His Most Pure Mother bless your pilgrimage!
Posted 21 November 2006 - 07:30 PM
Sound advise. I have visited the Greek monastery and convent 4 and 2 hours from me respectively. Perhaps you know Father Dositheos from Holy Archangels Monastery in Kendalia Texas? Or Mother Paraskevi at St. Paraskevi Greek Monastery in Washington, Texas?
I will pray! I fear though, as is my custom to put the cart before the horse and do something out of emotion rather than spiritual guidance. I, like many, am drawn to the Holy Mountain though I have never been there. I will need to visit to make sure my presence is acceptable to Her. Or is it honestly to make sure my flesh will subcome to the living conditions? To thine own self be true. I hate that.
I will start looking into learning Greek. I won't be able then to make the excuse "I don't understand, it sounds like Greek to me."
I appreciate your time Father. Thank you! I look forward to participating in other forums as time goes on. I think I can ask more open questions here rather than to people I know in my Parish and them not think I am too far gone in my obsessions.
Posted 22 November 2006 - 06:06 AM
You are certainly blessed to live so close to these two monastic communities. I do know some of the Fathers whom I met some time back at the Holy Monastery of Philotheou on the Holy Mountain.
These two communities will definitely give you a flavour of Athonite living. Though, in my personal experience, nothing can quite compare with the Garden of the Virgin Mary, so resplendant in Her Saints both reposed and living.
Another unique aspect of Athonite living is the daily typicon of Services. It is like prayer resonating in the heart. There is something truly heavenly and ineffable about the typicon on Athos.
I must confess that when I went there recently I was quite distressed by the disappearance of the beautiful hand-made paths, and the mode of transport which I had known, that being either walking or riding by donkey. I even missed the sound of the bells around the donkeys' knecks and the way they would call to one another, especially as the sun went down.
I mentioned this to an old friend of mine (a hieromonk) at the Holy Monastery of Dionysios, and he looked me straight in the eye and said: 'But we still have the typicon'.
As for the donkeys, a dear friend, also a hieromonk and originally from France said to me: 'You will find them at Kavsokalyvia!'
Posted 22 October 2008 - 07:45 PM
A long time friend and i are open to exploring the possibility of becoming monks in a monastery on Mount Athos. I am already an ordained minister and we are both practitioners of meditations from various cultures of the world. The following questions are surely trivial for some of you; however, they are concerns for both of us.
We understand that admission as a monk on Mount Athos confers Greek citizenship. This is not an issue. We are concerned with the mandatory military service that comes with being a Greek citizen. With all possible hope, the Greek government does not ask the monks on Mount Athos to fulfill this requirement, correct?
In this thread, we've also read that the nationality is under the monastic name. Is this an actual legal name change or how does that work exactly? This confuses us a bit.
Thank you all very much for reading this.
Posted 23 October 2008 - 02:37 AM
Are you and your friend Orthodox. If not, there is no way you will be allowed to be an Orthodox monk especially on Athos. If you are Orthodox, you should first visit a local monastery before making any plans. Many of your questions will be answered there. OR ask your priest.
Posted 24 October 2008 - 08:11 PM
We are concerned with the mandatory military service that comes with being a Greek citizen. With all possible hope, the Greek government does not ask the monks on Mount Athos to fulfill this requirement, correct?
That's a good question. I don't know the answer. I suppose it depends on your age.
I do know that Elder Paisios served in the army until 1949.
Posted 09 August 2011 - 07:25 PM
Dear brothers and fathers,
I am curious about the nationality laws of Mt. Athos. Do you become a citizen of Athos or of Greece? Also are novices given nationality as well?
Athos is part of the Republic of Greece, it is not a sovereign state in its own right like (for instance) the Vatican City. As such all monks, as Alex stated, are citizens of Greece.
Posted 16 August 2011 - 04:29 AM
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