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In his youth he travelled through Europe, studying at Venice and Padua, and at Geneva where he came under the influence of the reformed faith as represented by [[John Calvin]]. In 1602 he was elected Patriarch of Alexandria, and in 1621 Patriarch of Constantinople.
Due to Turkish oppression combined with the proselitisation of the Orthodox faithful by Jesuit [[missionary|missionaries]], there was a shortage of schools which taught the Orthodox faith and Greek language. Catholic schools were set up and Catholic churches were built next to Orthodox ones; since Orthodox priests were in short
demand something had to be done. Due to good relations with the Anglicans, in 1677 Bishop Henry Compton of London built a church for the Greek Orthodox in London but in 1682 the Greek Orthodox Church in London closed. But in 1694 renewed sympathy for the Greeks drew up plans for Worcester College, Oxford (then Gloucester Hall), to become a college for the Greeks, but these plans never came to fruition.
In 1753 the Patriarch Cyril Lukaris opened a school of thought called [[Athoniada]] at [[Mount Athos]], but the Orthodox and Catholics insisted to the Turkish authorities that this should be closed. In 1759 the Athos School was closed. The next option was to send students abroad to study, as long as it was not Catholic thought. The Calvinists were appealing because their beliefs were very similar to Orthodox ones.