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“Respect the memory of the dead”: this is the warning that the archbishop of Syros, Santorini and Crete, mgr. Francesco Papamanolis, sends to the unknown authors of the vandalism committed a few days ago in the Catholic cemetery of Chanià, in Crete. It is the fourth time that graves are profaned, crosses are broken up, and inscriptions on graves are destroyed in that graveyard. In the past (2005 and 2007), the prelate states, “the damage was assumed to have been committed by unknown drug-addicts, but it seems it must have been committed, instead, by people who would like to remove or make the Catholic cemetery disappear from Chanià. To all of them, we say: respect the memory of the dead”. “Two years ago - Papamanolis adds –, something similar had happened in the Orthodox cemetery of Constantinople and our Government had turned it into a national problem. But when the two previous times our cemetery of Chanià was damaged by sacrilegious people, none of the authorities did anything, they hushed up the problem and did nothing to fix the outrage to the memory of the dead, and they did not even help us repair the damage. Don’t the bones of the Catholic Christians deserve the same respect as the bones of the Orthodox brothers?” “We ask the Ministries of Justice and Public Order to protect us, because the injustice we suffer as a Catholic Church, especially in Crete, is rising all the time”.

© SIR - august 24 2009