Source: Chicago Sun-Times
On October 21, 1999, the Chicago-Sun-Times reported that Archbishop Demetrios, new head of the 1.5 million-member Greek Orthodox church in America, will speak at a dinner honoring Bishop Iakovos for leading the Chicago Diocese for the past 20 years. Bishop Iakovos stated that the Archbishop's visit is a "gesture of healing for our church," since the Greek Orthodox church in America had been in a three-year dispute over the leadership of the previous Archbishop, Spyridon. The event is expected to bring together Orthodox bishops from around the country and the world, along with church leaders in the Chicago area, including Roman Catholic Cardinal Francis George. Iakovos, who heads 34 parishes in Illinois and 24 more scattered throughout Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, northern Indiana, and eastern Missouri, has witnessed improvement in the Chicago area: "We have a better dialogue, and communication among leaders of various faiths." Iakovos also created a task force to help his diocese work with members of the community who have AIDS.