02 July, 2008
Greek Orthodox Archbishop Demetrios of America was decorated on Tuesday with the Grand Cross of the Order of the Phoenix, the country's highest distinction, by President of the Republic Karolos Papoulias.
"It is a small honor in light of all that you have done for the Hellenism of America," Papoulias told the Archbishop.
Accepting the distinction, Demetrios said that the Cross and the Reborn Phoenix were symbols of the Hellenes abroad.
Archbishop Demetrios called on Papoulias at the Presidential Mansion, shortly after his arrival from Rome, where he attended the meeting between Ecumenical Patriarch Vartholomeos and Pope Benedict.
The insignia of the Order of the Phoenix is cross-shaped. It is made of white enamel and on the cross the mythical phoenix with open wings is depicted in relief, rising out of the flames. The phoenix is also depicted in relief in the centre of the star. The reverse side of the cross bears the emblem of the Hellenic Republic.
The ribbon which accompanies the insignia is deep yellow with a narrow black border on both edges.
Source: Athens News Agency