To the Editor:
The memo written by Bishop Andonios to the Archdiocese staff regarding a forthcoming investigation by the New York State Attorney General recently printed in The National Herald strongly confirms our worst fears.
A. Dangerously inept individuals operate the Archdiocese; the fact the “Archbishop” allowed Andonios to write staff and give them what amounts to legal advice is disturbing. When being investigated do not give legal advice, memorialized by email to other potential subjects. Lawyers do. Based on his sloppy record of cover-ups and gross mismanagement, it is my opinion Andonios is not qualified to wash dishes at a diner let alone issue legal directives. While none of us know whom this investigation may target, (in the end perhaps nobody) it should be noted that basic legal safeguards are always utilized by organizations that are being investigated, whether large corporations or tiny family businesses.
B. By some accounts, Jerry Dimitriou may have grown arrogant and abrasive over the years. However, the implication that whatever financial malfeasance may have occurred at the Archdiocese is limited to him is difficult to imagine. Indeed, the hierarchy and the clerics at the Archdiocese control everything, even the most minuscule functions as demonstrated by the issuing of an awkward legal directive to staff by an idiot. Clearly, anything of importance Dimitriou did was reviewed and approved.
C. The issuance of a subpoena indicates the court has been presented with an accusatory instrument that the District Attorney wishes to further examine. While we don’t know the full implications, we do know an investigation of a serious nature is underway- an investigation the Archdiocese cannot quash.
The faithful that donated money to the St. Nicholas building fund deserve full accounting of all monies and a fair and transparent investigation. The Greek Orthodox community in the United States is at a crucial crossroads, which may very well affect future generations.
Many are understandably upset. But we should also hold judgment until all facts are presented and an investigation is completed. I urge and frankly beg readers not to abandon our churches at this point. Yes, there has been plenty of incompetence and mismanagement at the Archdiocese but that doesn’t mean criminal acts have occurred. Thanks to civil authorities we may now find out the truth.