Staying Connected: Technology at Center of Event 1200 Years in the Making

Staying Connected: Technology at Center of Event 1200 Years in the Making


“How do you make sure 300 million people don’t miss an event 1200 years in the making? You call the technology experts at Pro4ia.”


The more time invested into preparation, the more seamless an event will go. Perhaps no organization understands this more than the Ecumenical Patriarchate and the Orthodox Christian Churches in preparing for The Holy and Great Council of the Orthodox Church, an international religious gathering of the most important figures in the Orthodox Christian faith. Planning and preparation for the event, held on the balmy Greek island of Crete, took some 55 years and has been 1200 years in the making; the content of which would affect the lives of some 300 million Orthodox Christians living around the world today.

In modern times, having a sound technological infrastructure is critical for almost any complex undertaking. The technology that these organizations choose, and the people that understand, implement and support them, are no longer optional: they are mission critical parts of achieving specific objectives and goals. For the Holy and Great Council, the pertinent information had to be captured, translated, broadcast and disseminated. On top of that, religious leaders needed to be able to communicate and understand one another using the technology provided. Maintaining organizational communication became a central focus of the event team, and the technology underscoring that ability.


Technology Solutions To Support Organizational Goals


“The team at Pro4ia was there from the beginning, making suggestions and changes, coordinating how everything would be set-up and taken-down, and most importantly communicating with us; being able to adapt and understanding the particular needs of our organization.”

Theo Nicolakis, CIO for The Holy and Great Council


Because the purpose of the event was to decide on matters central to an organization, technology was the gatekeeper for how that information was disseminated to the people that the policies and ides affected the most. For the Holy and Great Council, the most important piece that technology could deliver was connectivity and security.

After connectivity was targeted as a priority, several things had to happen. First, thorough planning and requirement analysis were important to make sure systems were created to be safe and redundant in the case of an accident or failure. Second, systems were created using low-level and high-level network design, made to be recursive, redundant, and eliminate any possible point of failure. Third, security measures were put in place that included using the latest and most secure equipment along with rigorous testing and risk analysis.

Once this infrastructure was in place, the hard work for the team on the ground in Crete wasn’t done. The support of vital equipment for the length of the undertaking had been included in the scope from the beginning. Pro4ia’s team coordinated with the local ISP and vendors, ensuring safe and reliable delivery of equipment and services.


“The detailed technology requirements of the event were constantly changing, even during the event. Risk assessments along with technology assessments, were applied often.”

 -George Loukidis, Project Manager at Pro4ia


A single, comprehensive support system was created using a customized ticketing system. This Help Desk served over 1000 attendees and guests during the event, constantly vigilant that the technology couldn’t fail the message. To support incoming tickets, the help desk was staffed 24/7 by Pro4ia’s network and systems engineers. More than 1,200 different wireless devices were supported during the Holy and Great Council, along with 35 computers, 9 printers and 18 heavy-duty copiers servicing an area of 100,000 square feet.


A Success All-Around


“From the initial technology assessment, to the network design and single day dismantling of the network, we were in Crete to make in-time delivery of the project a certainty for the Archdiocese.”

 -Sergio Deligiannis, Executive at Pro4ia


For the Ecumenical Patriarchate and Pro4ia, project management and years of expertise made the difference for the technology behind this momentous event that would affect the lives of some 300 million people around the world. The 290 delegates at the Council, the leaders of the 10 local or Autocephalous Churches taking part, completed its week-long work on the island without any network disruption or technology failure. In the end, having technology work to support business or organizational goals is critical to almost any complex undertaking. Whether it’s spreading ideas effectively and efficiently within, or broadcasting important information to those whom it affects, connectivity affects how business gets done. If your organization would like to find out how your technology can better support your business goals, reach out to Pro4ia today.