January 15, 2014

An Official Recognition of the 8th and 9th Ecumenical Synods

A few years ago it was decided by the Church of Greece to begin the process of making the Eighth and Ninth Ecumenical Synods officially recognized, but since that time the issue has dropped. His Eminence Metropolitan Seraphim of Piraeus, who championed this recognition and presented it to the Ecumenical Patriarchate, has decided to move forward with it in his own Metropolis at the local level. Below is the Statement of His Eminence translated, and below that are the two Encyclicals for each of the two Ecumenical Synods, establishing the celebration of the Sacred Memory of the 383 God-bearing Fathers of the Eighth Ecumenical Synod on the Second Sunday of February, and the God-bearing Fathers of the Ninth Ecumenical Synod on the Second Sunday of Great Lent.

Statement of the Sacred Metropolis of Piraeus

December 16, 2013

It is common knowledge, that the Standing Sacred Synod during the Synodal period 2010-2011 voted on the issue, during the regular convening of the Sacred Synod of the Hierarchs of the Church of Greece, regarding the subject of a proposal to the Secretariat for the convening of a future Pan-Orthodox Synod for the recognition in the rubrics with Universal prominence of the 8th and 9th Ecumenical Synods of the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church which met in Constantinople in the years 879-880 and 1341-1351 A.D. as indeed Ecumenical Synods, and in blatant disregard to the Incorporated Charter of the Church of Greece, this procedure has eroded to the celebrated "calends" [forever postponed].

Thus the matter was considered humanly expired but the Lord of the Church and Her Builder, through His wondrous intervention in a unique way which He alone knows, without any communication or any contact whatsoever, inspired the God-loving heart of the congenitally blind yet majestic and unctuous deacon of Theology and of the ancestral musical tradition, the late music teacher Apostolos Papachristou, who wrote and composed the hymnography and hymnology of the juxtaposed Services of the Holy 8th and 9th Ecumenical Synods, which he sent just five days before his blessed separation from this world and his entrance into the imperishable blessedness of the Kingdom of God.

Hence justified we received the event as a divine sign, to repeat the scriptural words: "We must obey God rather than men" (Acts 5:29), and reached the decision that in our Sacred Metropolis these two Ecumenical Synods will be honored of course on a local level, and we will hold the memory of the late Apostolos Papachristou and the synthesized Sacred Services by him in the God-loving hearts of the pious brethren, keeping the form of their publication or any new Services of the Ecumenical Synods offered, as always, without receiving payment.

In this, we bring to the attention of all the inspired Introductions of those designated by the Standing Sacred Synod, His Eminence Hierotheos of Nafpaktos and Agiou Vlasiou and His Eminence Jeremiah of Gortynos and Megalopolis, for those who have not recognized among the sacred Body of Hierarchs, and ultimately the relative judgement of experts, regarding the Ecumenicity of these Synods.

+ Seraphim of Piraeus

Source: Translated by John Sanidopoulos.

Encyclical for the Eighth Ecumenical Synod

Encyclical for the Ninth Ecumenical Synod