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Patriarch Callistratus of Georgia

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Callistratus (Georgian: კალისტრატე, Kalistrate) (April 24, 1866 — February 2, 1952) was a Catholicos-Patriarch of All Georgia from June 21, 1932 until his death. His full title was His Holiness and Beatitude, Archbishop of Mtskheta-Tbilisi and Catholicos-Patriarch of All Georgia.

Educated at the theological seminaries of Tiflis and Kiev, he was ordained to the priesthood at the Didube Church in 1893. He then served at the Kashueti Church (1903) and was involved in the Georgian autocephalist movement in defense of which he produced, in 1905, a special study of the Georgian Orthodox Church, which had been under the Russian control since 1810. After the reestablishment of the Georgian church in 1917, he was consecrated metropolitan at Ninotsminda in 1925 and bishop at Manglisi in 1927. After the imprisonment of Catholicos Patriarch Ambrose by the Soviet government, Callistratus was a locum tenens from 1923 to 1926. After his election to the patriarchate in 1932, following a brief reign of Christophorus III, Callistratus tried to pursue a conciliatory line with the Stalin's regime in order to ease the pressure from authorities. Through Stalin's mediation, Callistratus reconciled the Georgian church with its Russian counterpart, which in turn recognized the Georgian autocephaly in 1943. In 1948, he was appointed to the Soviet Peace Committee. Despite official Soviet atheist propaganda, Callistratus maintained that Christianity and Communism could coexist.[1][2] He died in 1952 and was interred at the Tbilisi Sioni Cathedral.

References

  1. Shirley, Eugene B. (1991), Candle in the wind: religion in the Soviet Union, p. 42. Ethics and Public Policy Center
  2. Kolarz, Walter (1962), Religion in the Soviet Union, p. 103. Macmillan
Preceded by
Christophorus III
Catholicos-Patriarch of All Georgia
1932 — 1952
Succeeded by
Melchizedek III
ka:კალისტრატე

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