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November 15, 2021

Explanations and Clarifications of Ecclesiastical History and the Deontology of the Ukrainian Issue (Part 11)

...continued from part ten.

* Let us proceed to the recent "threats" of the political arrogance of our Russian brothers. Indirectly they are talking about the appropriation of the Old Calendarist factions of Greece. This was not directly said by Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, but inferred, in an interview with a Russian channel, which was immediately published in a Greek website, on the eve of our own Hierarchical Session. For so long this was not said, because other more elitist methods of pressure were being employed by the Metropolitan among the Greek Hierarchy and the ecclesiastical body. Now, on the verge of a discussion and a possible decision, this intimidation by the Russian Metropolitan and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Muscovite Church is also being planted!

This first of all shows the ruthless obsession of our Russian brothers with methods of blackmailing the Pan-Orthodox Decisions. And such obsession does not belong to the Orthodox ecclesiastical ethos. It is reminiscent of the Papal practices of the first schism during the reign of Saint Photios, for the many blessed and beneficial movements of Constantinople in relation to the beginnings of Slavic Christianity. Of course, there were political motives at the time, but the genuine ecclesiastical mindset and the traditional theological fullness of the Fathers of Ecumenical Orthodoxy looked far beyond the political motives of the then emperor. The Saints did not see things presbyopically or myopically, they did not see things as political opportunists, but they saw everything with illumined hearts as they obeyed the Holy Spirit.

On the contrary, from the indirect blackmail for the "invasion" within the canonical territory of the Church of Greece, the foreign policy of the Russian Church has artificially announced beforehand the similar interventions in South Ossetia, with the work of the Old Calendarist Greeks that live there.

* It is now time to overthrow with simple modern examples the postponements of the former schismatic Ukrainian faction, which today constitutes the Autocephalous Church of Ukraine, as well as the other opportunistic rebukes against the Ecumenical Patriarchate for similar issues.

Of course, a scholarly analysis of the Apostolic Tradition and Apostolic Succession and the priority of the Mysteries of the Church (in which they are preserved) has been repeatedly presented by Metropolitan Hierotheos of Nafpaktos in studies which he republished in his recent book on "The Ukrainian Issue", which we all have.

As an introduction, let me say that the ordination of Saint George Karslides took place at a time when the Georgian Church was found to have a broken relationship (something like a schism) with Moscow. The Saint was already ordained when he arrived in Greece in 1937, while the Georgian Church had been restored to recognition and communion with the Russian Church in 1938. Are we to think therefore that the Saint was not ordained?

I want to say that in circumstances of disturbances in the Church, many times the Church acts beyond the canonical institutions. And still, the Holy Spirit descends to these necessary ecclesiastical tactics.