The International Hellenic University – 27/6/18
The International Hellenic University (IHU, ihu.edu.gr), with the blessing and support of H.A.H. the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, has asked the Center for Ecumenical, Missiological and Environmental Studies “Metropolitan Panteleimon Papageorgiou” (cemes.weebly.com) to set up an English speaking post-graduate program of highest academic standards on “Orthodox Ecumenical Theology” (hum.ihu.edu.gr/index.php/en/courses/masters/master-in-orthodox-ecumenical-theology).
The program was originally planned for non-Orthodox graduate students wishing to learn more about the Orthodox Theology, not only as it was developed during the past two millennia, but also as it addresses contemporary issues, thus fostering ecumenical relations. It was decided, however, to also serve Orthodox unity at the vital section of theological education, being addressed to the younger generation of future Church leaders. The program is mission-oriented, biblically and liturgically-based, with a primary intention to study the rich Orthodox Patristic tradition, but at the same time reflect on how this can be implemented in the 21st century.
To achieve this goal the Scientific Committee of the Program was decided to consist of renowned Academic hierarchs who serve, or have served, as Rectors, Deans, Directors of Orthodox Academic Institutions from a wide range of Orthodox constituencies: the Metropolitans John Zizioulas of Pergamon (Athens Academy), Kallistos Ware of Diokleia (Oxford), Nifor Mihaita of Targoviste, Makarios Tillyridis of Κenya (Makarios III), Hilarion Alfeyev of Volokolamsk (Ss. Cyril & Methodius, Moscow), Elpidoforos Lambryniadis of Proussa (Chalki).
As the President of CEMES – the Honorary President always being the Metropolitan of Thessaloniki, the city in which Metropolitan Panteleimon served 50 years ago – and the director of the program, in consultation with members of the Academic committee, we came to the conclusion that it will be desirable and more effective in fostering ecumenical relations, if students and professors from as many as possible Orthodox and non-Orthodox Churches be part of this visionary project.
As far as the students of the Program are concerned, for the credibility of the Ecumenical character of the program it is suggested that all Churches send top theologians, and if possible contribute to the fees (3.000 euros for the entire program, courses, examinations, reading of the M.Th. thesis). The IHU has made provision of some scholarships on high grades criteria. And some dioceses and ecclesiastical institutions from around the globe (Monasteries, religious organizations etc.) are kindly asked to provide extra scholarships to keep this ecumenical project alive. The dioceses of the greater area of Thessaloniki will offer hospitality at their hostels, so that the can easier contribute to their students’ travel expenses and university fees.
In consultation with the University authorities after the first two years of its implementation it was agreed on the recommendation of some members of the scientific committee that the program – at least for a semester – be moved to, and be hosted by, institutions of other jurisdictions, if they wish to, and of course have the necessary infra structure.
Your moral and financial support in a manner you consider more appropriate, as well as a wider promotion of the program, we believe it will foster ecumenical relations. Attached are some related documents of the program
Prof. Constantinos Grammenos Prof. Emeritus Petros Vassiliadis
President of IHU Director of the Program