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12/13/2021 Turkey (International Christian Concern) – Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew has yet again made an appeal to Turkey to reopen the Halki Theological School, which was closed in 1971 as a result of affiliation requirements. For 50 years, the church has unsuccessfully requested that the seminary be reopened to conduct trainings and teachings.

A Constitutional Court ruling that banned private universities unless they held a state institution affiliation closed the island seminary. The school is owned by the Monastery of the Holy Trinity. Conferences and international campaigns have been made over the years with no movement by the Turkish government to allow its activities to resume.

Bartholomew commented at a conference on a 1920 Encyclical that promoted church reunification saying, the seminary “has contributed a lot to Christendom and civilization, the Letters and humanity.” He continued, “It is certain that the suspension of our School has affected the Ecumenical Movement. The debate on the 1920 Encyclical provides us with the opportunity to petition the honorable government of (Turkey) to allow the School to operate again.”

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