Archbishop Iakovos of America explained

Honorific-Prefix:The Most Reverend
Iakovos
Archbishop Of:Archbishop of North and South America
See:New York, New York, USA
Enthroned:April 1, 1959
Ended:July 29, 1996
Predecessor:Michael
Successor:Spyridon
Birth Name:Demetrios Coucouzes
Birth Date:29 July 1911
Birthplace: Imvros, Ottoman Empire
Deathplace: Stamford, Connecticut, USA
Buried:Brookline, Massachusetts, USA
Nationality:American (naturalized)
Parents:Athanasios and Maria Coucouzes
Alma Mater:Theological School of Halki

Archbishop Iakovos (July 29, 1911 - April 10, 2005) (Greek, Modern (1453-): Ιάκωβος, born Demetrios Coucouzis, Δημήτριος Κουκούζης)[1] was the Primate of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of North and South America from 1959 until his resignation in 1996. He was born on the island of Imvros, Ottoman Empire and died in Connecticut, USA.

Biography

Born on the Island of Imvros, Ottoman Empire on July 29, 1911 to Maria and Athanasios Coucouzis, he had two sisters Virginia and Chrysanthi and a brother Panagiotis. He enrolled at age 15 in the Ecumenical Patriarchal Theological School of Halki. After graduating with high honors, Demetrios Coucouzis was ordained deacon in 1934, taking the ecclesiastical name Iakovos. Five years after his ordination, Deacon Iakovos received an invitation to serve as Archdeacon to the late Archbishop Athenagoras, the Primate of North and South America, who later (1949-72) became Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople.

Ordained a priest in 1940 in Lowell, Massachusetts, he served at St. George Church, Hartford, Connecticut, while teaching and serving as assistant dean of the Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Theological School, then in Pomfret, Connecticut and now in Brookline, Massachusetts. In 1941, he was named Preacher at Holy Trinity Cathedral in New York City and in the summer of 1942 served as temporary Dean of St. Nicholas Church in St. Louis, Missouri. He was appointed Dean of the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Boston in 1942 and remained there until 1954. In 1945 he earned a Master of Sacred Theology Degree from Harvard University.

In 1954, he was ordained Bishop of Melita, by his spiritual father and mentor, Ecumenical Patriarch Athenagoras, for whom he served four years as personal representative of the Patriarchate to the World Council of Churches in Geneva. On February 14, 1959, the Holy Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate elected Iakovos as successor to Archbishop Michael, who died July 15, 1958, as primate of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America. He was enthroned April 1, 1959 at Holy Trinity Cathedral, assuming responsibility for what has grown to over 500 parishes in the United States.[2]

In addition to his duties as primate, Archbishop Iakovos was Exarch of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople; president of the board of education of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of North and South America; founder and chairman of the Standing Conference of the Canonical Orthodox Bishops in the Americas (SCOBA); chairman of the Orthodox-Roman Catholic Consultation in the USA, and of the Bishops' Committee for Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs; honorary board of the Advisory Council on Religious Rights in Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union, and of the United States Senate Committee on Foreign Relations.

A supporter of civil rights, Archbishop Iakovos was one of the few prominent non-African American clergymen who had the courage to walk hand in hand with Martin Luther King Jr. during the famous march in Selma, Alabama. A picture of this historic moment, with Archbishop Iakovos to the right of Martin Luther King Jr., was captured on the cover of Life Magazine on March 26, 1965.

Iakovos also became the first Greek Orthodox archbishop to meet with a Roman Catholic Pope in 350 years when he met Pope John XXIII in 1959[3] [4] .

He spent nine years on the World Council of Churches and met with every U.S. president from Dwight D. Eisenhower to Bill Clinton. Jimmy Carter awarded him the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1980[5] .

Iakovos came into conflict with the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I after he supported a move by 29 bishops towards the administrative unification of Eastern Orthodox churches in America. It is widely believed that this clash forced him to resign in 1996[6] .

Archbishop Iakovos, died on April 10, 2005 at Stamford Hospital, Stamford, CT, from a pulmonary ailment. He was buried on April 15 in the grounds of the Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology in Brookline, Massachusetts.

Titles

Archbishop Iakovos was the last Primate of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America that held the title of Archbishop of North and South America. After him the Archbishop's title was limited to "Archbishop of America" instead of "Archbishop of North and South America".[7]

His official title was:

His Eminence, Iakovos, Archbishop of North and South America, Exarch of the Lands between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans;

in Greek:

Η Αυτού Σεβασμιότης ο Αρχιεπίσκοπος Βορείου και Νοτίου Αμερικής, Υπέρτιμος και Έξαρχος Ωκεανών Ατλαντικού τε και Ειρηνικού Ιάκωβος

Medals and awards

International Orthodox Christian CharitiesChicago, Illinois

Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America

President of Cyprus Glafkos KleridesNew York, New York

Panarcadian Federation of AmericaNew York, New York

Patriarch Pavle of SerbiaNew York, New York

Pancyprian Association of AmericaNew York, New York

Federation of Hellenic Societies of New York New York, New York

Athens, Greece

Thessaloniki, Greece

Mayor of Athens Miltiadis EvertAthens, Greece

President of Cyprus George VasiliouNew York, New York

Archbishop of Canterbury Robert RuncieLondon, England

Chian FederationNew York, New York

Order of AHEPAWashington, D.C.

New York, New York

Ellis Island, New York

New York, New York

Mayor of New York Edward KochNew York, New York

McBurney SchoolNew York, New York

Los Angeles, California

President of Greece Constantine KaramanlisAthens, Greece

Academy of AthensAthens, Greece

Cathedral of St. JohnNew York, New York

Boston, Massachusetts

Boy Scouts of America

Hellenic Medical SocietyNew York, New York

Patriarch Diodoros of Jerusalem

St. Paul's SocietyNew York, New York

Society for the Family of ManNew York City Council of Churches

New York UniversityNew York, New York

President of USA Jimmy CarterWashington, D.C.

Hellenic College/Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of TheologyBoston, Massachusetts

Jewish Heritage Week

The Appeal of Conscience Foundation

Society for the Family of ManNew York City Council of Churches

The White HouseWashington, D.C.

Religious Heritage of America

National Conference of Christians and Jews

Mayor of Athens, Demetrios RitsiosAthens, Greece

National Conference of Christians and JewsNew York, New York

Patriarch Benedict of Jerusalem

Books

External links

Notes and References

  1. http://www.worldwhoswho.com/views/entry.html?id=iak-0003 IAKOVOS, Archbishop
  2. http://www.goarch.org/en/archbishop/iakovos/biography.asp Archbisop Iakovos
  3. http://www.qgazette.com/news/2007/0627/features/090.html Archbishop Iakovos Ends His 37-Year Reign In Orthodox Church
  4. http://www.georgiabulletin.org/world/2005/04/14/US-1/ Archbishop Iakovos called 'devoted champion' of Orthodox-Catholic unity
  5. http://www.medaloffreedom.com/ArchbishopIakovos.htm Presidential Medal of Freedom Recipient Archbishop Iakovos
  6. http://www.boston.com/news/globe/obituaries/articles/2005/04/12/archbishop_iakovos_led_greek_orthodox_in_americas/ Archbishop Iakovos; led Greek Orthodox in Americas
  7. http://www.hri.org/news/greek/ana/1996/96-07-30.ana.html#10 New metropolitan centers in North, South America