January 19, 2015

Saint Mark of Ephesus on the Latin Church

By His Eminence Metropolitan Hierotheos
of Nafpaktos and Agiou Vlasiou

Saint Mark the Eugenikos, Metropolitan of Ephesus, was a fearless confessor of the faith at the Synod of Ferrara-Florence, since he did not succumb to papal pressure and blackmail and remained until the end a confessor of the faith. Not only did he demonstrate the fallacies of the Latins at this Synod, but he simultaneously proved that the Latins made fraudulent interpolations into the texts of the Church Fathers.

Initially, of course, Saint Mark the Eugenikos behaved courteously, but later when he confirmed the insincerity, the pressures, the frauds, the extortions and the wicked ways of the Latins, he became a confessor of the faith. His attitude was entirely Roman, because true Romans are aristocrats of the spirit, and they are able to communicate with sobriety, calmness and courteousness, but when it comes to being distanced from revealed truth, and when they see the insincerity of others, then they become confessors of the faith. This is because Christ does not only want seekers, but confessors.

Saint Mark the Eugenikos had a clear knowledge of things. That is, he knew that we cut the Latins off from the Body of the Church, because the Latins embraced the heresy of the Filioque. I will quote from a text that expresses this enough. Saint Mark writes:

"It was they who gave the grounds for the schism by openly making the addition, which until then they had spoken in secret; while we were the first to separate ourselves from them, or rather, to separate and cut them off from the common Body of the Church. Why may I ask? Because they have the right Faith or have made the addition to the Creed in an Orthodox fashion? Surely whoever would begin to talk like that would not be right in the head. But rather because they have an absurd and impious opinion and for no reason at all made the addition. And so we have turned away from them as heretics and have shunned them."

From this text we can comment on the following truths.

First, the Latins revealed the heresy of the Filioque, which previously they believed secretly, uttering it between their teeth.

Second, we Orthodox separated willfully from the Latins, which is equivalent to us cutting them off from the common Body of the Church, because they upheld impious doctrines, and unreasonably added the word Filioque to the Symbol of Faith.

Third, the Latins, with the addition of the Filioque, are heretics and as heretics they are cut off from the Church. Those who claim that the Latins believe correctly and correctly express the doctrine of the Filioque, they are not "right in the head", that is, they have a concussion of the brain.

Therefore, according to the teachings of the Fathers of the Church, as it was expressed by Saint Mark the Eugenikos, the Latins are heretics, cut off from the Church, and naturally they are outside of the Church and they have no valid Mysteries.

Source: Published in Theodromia, July-September 2001. Translated by John Sanidopoulos.