After my death our beloved Church abroad will break three ways ... first the Greeks will leave us as they were never a part of us ... then those who live for this world and its glory will go to Moscow ... what will remain will be those souls faithful to Christ and His Church. ~St. Philaret of NY


Letter confirming GOC recognizes Vl. Agafangel as chief hierarch of ROCOR

Letter from GOC Athens to Mountain View schism under-ban bishop Andronik

# 2676
Athens, 10/23-01-2018
To His Eminence Andronik, Archbishop of Syracuse, NY 

The Most Reverend Vladyka, 
The Lord Jesus Christ, Who appeared in the Jordan, may always abundantly grant His enlightenment from above to you. 

At the meeting of our Holy Synod on December 8/21, 2017, it was decided, after a consultation with the members of the Holy Diocesan Synod of our Church in America, to address you with this fraternal letter in order to express our pain and sorrow for the continuing division among the Hierarchy of our beloved brothers Hierarchs of the Russian Church Abroad. We therefore wish to share our thoughts with you, emphasizing that we all pray that there is a way out of this painful crisis as soon as possible. 

Firstly, we report that the forthcoming issue has repeatedly been the subject of conversations, as much for our Holy Synod of the Church of the GOC of Greece, as for the Diocesan Synod of America. And because, as is known, this crisis of the ROCA is also causing problems for the Church of the GOC of Greece, especially in a geographical place abroad, where the parishes of both Churches are present. 

Most Rev. Metropolitan of Toronto, Moses, was very sad when he learned that his friendly visit to the neighbouring Russian Parish was misunderstood and that despite his good intentions, this event, quite unfairly, was the reason for the aggravation of the mutual relations of the two sides that remain in disagreement within the ROCA. 

All Bishops of our Holy Synod believe that the disagreement between you and the clergy of Met. Agafangel relate not to dogmatic, but administrative issues, for which it is quite possible to find a solution through dialogue. 

However, it should be noted that your party hastened to arbitrarily ordain the bishop for Australia and accept in communion another bishop in America; these actions, in our opinion, are hasty, and aggravate the difficulties for reconciliation. In addition, we do not approve of certain promulgations and official statements and declarations on your part, by which you are trying to justify the fragmentation of the Church into many parts, which give a cause to Metropolitan Agafangel and those with him to condemn you more sharply. In any case, we think that through honest and sincere dialogue it is possible to find solutions to all this. 

In the direction of the opening of the dialogue, we ask Your Eminence to appoint a suitable person from your clergy who is familiar with these administrative problems so that he participates in a dialogue with such a member of the Clergy from Metropolitan Agafangel’s side. 

Most Rev. Archbishop Sofroniy in his Report “The Causes of Crisis in the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia”, in the end, says: "For many years we have made every possible effort to find a 
conciliar solution to these problems" (second paragraph of the conclusion). There is no reason for interrupting the effort now, the more so as we also propose to promote it to the extent possible. 

We will continue to encourage Metropolitan Agafangel to refrain from taking disciplinary action against you and instructively participate in this way in dialogue. We ask you not to close the door of the dialogue, because if something like this happens, then the effort on our part to persuade Metropolitan Agafangel to hold a moderate position will become impotent. In this case, the consequences will be very painful and we will come to the conclusion that the burden of responsibility rests with the party that interrupted the effort to reconcile. 

In the hope of a positive response on your part, we remain faithful in the brotherly love in Christ, 
Chief Secretary of the Holy Synod 
† Photios of Dimitriada 
[translated from Russian original] 

And Mountain View schism Fr. Andrei Erastov published his opinion regarding the letter
". . . Thus, this latest Letter from the Synod of Abp. Kallinikos has made completely clear that, which in fact, has been clear for some time: the Synod of Abp. Kallinikos has taken the side of Met. Agafangel.
     Bishop Andrei"


Joanna said...

Thank you, Minas for sending this to me. This is good news, well, at least the bottom line is good news.

And Fr. Andrei is being honest, too. He is honest about being a jurisdictional ecumenist, and also confessing that the PRIMARY reason for their schism is that they won't accept V Aga as chief hierarch. Period. No negotiations are possible.

As I recall the GOC once before arranged a mutual agreement between Agafangel and the schismatics, and later Andronik rescinded his signature. No negotiations are possible.

Athens does not see the true cause of the schism (MP), which is why they keep thinking that there can be discussions.

Joanna said...

Reader Daniel's comment:

". . . I just skimmed wacky Andrei Erastov's silly response to it, and as I  quickly absorbed it, I was mentally refuting his baloney.

The main point: Met. Agafangel has done NO immoral or uncanonical act, and no episcopal decisions, which would give any excuse for dumping him.

What, in reality, these people have is that they will not obey rightful and canonical and respectful Orthodox episcopal authority.

It is they who are in the wrong and guilty of making as schism and rebellion, for their money and power desires.

All of the schimatics' list of infractions and abuses, etc., are concocted & exaggerated SLANDEROUS rubbish... typical of how the communists get rid of good and Orthodox bishops, by throwing canons at him.

To me, this fact, makes me even more suspicious that they are being directed and manipulated by KGB/FSB

Daniel in Oregon"

Joanna said...

I disagree with the words "quite unfairly." Metropolitan Moses did not go to "visit" the schismatics with the "good intentions" of helping to correct their errors. Instead, he BLESSED them!


Joanna said...

I also disagree that Metropolitan Moses' "visit" was "the reason for the aggravation of the mutual relations of the two sides that remain in disagreement within the ROCA."

The "visit" caused no further aggravation within ROCOR, but there definitely was cause for ROCOR to be offended -- a Sister Church bishop going out of his way to bless our schismatics (?) What this did was 1.) confirm the schismatics in their folly; and 2.) betray us, trespass on our territory, embarrass us; and 3.) confuse everyone in ROCOR and GOC about both our schism and our Sister Church relationship.

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