Archbishop Damaskinos of Athens showed courage and compassion during a difficult period of World War Two . Knowing what had happened to the Thessaloniki Jews in the north, he advised the Jewish community of Athens to dissolve itself and flee and instructed the Greek clergy to issue false baptismal papers to anyone who needed them. He also encouraged his priests to ask their congregations to hide the Jews in their homes. After the war he was chosen by Churchill to act as regent in the absense of the King, who had been convinced to stay out of the country until a government could be worked out between the communists and the rest of the political spectrum. Archbishop Damaskinos, supported by the British , appointed six different ministries during 1945, none of which was to last. When King George returned after the plebescite of 1946 Damaskinos was able to step down. He died in 1949.
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