Halki Theological School
The Holy Theological School of Halki
The seminary is located at the top of a hill called the Hill of Hope, on the site of the Monastery of the Holy Trinity, founded by Patriarch Photios I, almost a thousand years before the foundation of the theological school. During Ottoman rule the monastery fell into disrepair. The reestablishment and reconstitution of the monastery are associated with the Ecumenical Patriarchs Photius I the Great, Metrophanes III, and Germanos IV. Germanos IV (1872-1845) visited the monastery in 1842 and saw the School's reconstruction and reconstitution which was approved by the Turkish authorities. In 1844, Patriarch Germanos IV converted the monastery into a school of theology, which was inaugurated on 1 October 1844. All the buildings, except for the 17th-century chapel, were destroyed by the 1894 Istanbul earthquake, but were rebuilt by architect Periklis Fotiadis and inaugurated on 6 October 1896.
When established in 1844, the school had seven grades, four high school level and three higher level (theological grades). In 1899, the high school division was dissolved and the school functioned as an academy with five grades. In 1923, on the establishment of the Turkish Republic, the seven-grade system was restored (4 high school + 3 higher level). In 1951, it was changed to 3 high school + 4 higher level.
The facilities include the Chapel of the Holy Trinity, sports and recreational institutions, dormitories, an infirmary, a hospice, offices, and the school's library with its historic collection of books, journals, and manuscripts. The library contains over 120,000 books, one of the largest in the region.
There have been 990 graduates of the theological school and many have become priests, bishops, archbishops, scholars, and patriarchs. Many former students are buried in the grounds of the school. Orthodox Christians from around the world have attended and graduated from the theological school and the alumni are distributed around the world.
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His Eminence Metropolitan
of Bursa and Exarch of Bithynia,
studied at the Faculty of Pastoral Theology, in the Theological School of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. In 1993, he finished his postgraduate studies at the Philosophical School of the University of Bonn, Germany. He was ordained a Deacon in 1994 at the Patriarchal Cathedral and was appointed as the Codecographer of the Holy and Sacred Synod. In 1995, he was appointed Deputy Secretary of the Holy and Sacred Synod. From 1996-1997 he studied at the Theological School of St. John of Damascus in Balamand, Lebanon. In 2001, he presented a doctoral dissertation (“Severus of Antioch and the Council of Chalcedon”) at the Theological School of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, proclaiming him a Doctor of Theology. In 2004, he was invited to Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology in Boston, where he taught as a visiting professor for one semester. In 2005, at the proposal of His All Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, he was promoted by the Holy and Sacred Synod to the position of Chief Secretary and was ordained to the priesthood by the Ecumenical Patriarch in the Patriarchal Cathedral. In 2009, he was unanimously elected Assistant Professor of Symbolics, Inter-Orthodox Relations, and the Ecumenical Movement.
In 2011, he was elected Metropolitan of Bursa and also appointed Abbot of the Holy Patriarchal and Stavropegial Monastery of the Holy Trinity on the island of Chalki. He has served as the Orthodox Secretary of the Joint International Commission for the Theological Dialogue between the Orthodox Church and the Lutheran World Federation and as a member of the Patriarchal delegations to the General Assemblies of the Conference of European Churches and the World Council of Churches. He was the Secretary of the Pan-Orthodox Synods in Sofia, Istanbul, Geneva, and Istanbul. He has been a member of the Faith and Order Commission of the World Council of Churches since 1996.