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Reverted -- this information belongs in something entirely separate, not this category description.
In 1951 Father Theodosios Makkos saved the life of Prince Hussein who
later became king of Jordan. Father Theodosios was born in Smyrna, Asia
Minor, present day Turkey, on July 11, 1913. He became an orphan at an
early age and was reared by his grandmother and aunt. He had a burning
desire to become a monk and serve the Church in the Holy Land. He came
to Palestine in 1928 and remained there until his death, 1991 at the age of
78 years old. He served the Church of Jerusalem with great devotion at various
places and positions for 63 years. His last 50 years he was the spiritual
father and resident priest at the monastery for women, Saints Mary and
Martha, sisters of Lazarus in Bethany, a suburb of Jerusalem.
While in Palestine he befriended King Abdullah. In July 1951 the king
made a pilgrimage to the holy shrine of Omar at Jerusalem with his
grandson Prince Hussein. The prince was a very young man at that time. While in
Jerusalem King Abdullah was assassinated. Father Theodosios was present,
accompanying the king. He immediately took the young prince under his
cassock (Rasson) and brought him to the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of
Jerusalem. The prince was hidden there. Fr. Theodosios reported the
Patriarch about the tragedy of the assassination of King Abdullah and
was greatly concerned for the safety and life of the young prince. The
Patriarch, before the rebels cut off the phones, placed a call to the
Jordanian authorities that the young prince is alive and hidden in a
safe place in the Orthodox Patriarchate. The Jordanian government sent
appropriate officials to the Patriarchate and took the young prince
under the protection of Jordan. For that reason King Hussein always was indebted
to the Elder Theodosios for saving his life. He visited often the simple
monk Theodosios in his monastery in Bethany. When later the prince
became king he continued to have close relations and visit him at the monastery
and Fr. Theodosios had an easy access to the king's palace. Fr.Theodosios
was able to enter the palace at any time. He helped numerous people
through his good word to the king. The king requested the Patriarch to elevate
him to the Episcopate. Elder Theodosios was elected by the synod three times
to be elevated but he refused the honor. He chose to remain a simple monk
to serve the nuns at the monastery of Martha and Mary. He was well known
throughout the region for his love and charity for all people without
regard of religion or race. He loved all people without distinction and
dedicated to charity and the service of justice. When I was in Jerusalem
for the month of January 1986 on a mission of study and dialogue with
Jews and Muslims I had the honor to meet Fr. Theodosios. I visited him in the
monastery and he told me the story. He also told me that whenever the
king greeted him as a sign of respect the king opened his palm for him to
kiss, whereas the other people kissed the back of his hand. This is a
remarkable story of friendship of a simple monk and a king, a Greek Orthodox
Christian and the other a Muslim. Father Theodosios dedicated his entire life to
protect the shrines and people who live in Palestine that he loved so
much. Especially he was honored for saving the life of the future king from
certain death. This is a great example for all people to follow, that is,
to love all and protect the life of all regardless of religious
affiliation, nationality or race. All people are people of God created
in His image. I was blessed to have known the Blessed Elder Theodosios. All
must emulate his example of love and respect for the other.
Credits: (c) 2005 Hellenic News of America, Inc. - All Rights Reserved
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