Original low-res image posted on MP website…
On 26 February 2011, a meeting of the Inter-Orthodox Preparatory Commission devoted to the future agenda of a possible all-Orthodox Holy and Great Council adjourned. It began its work on 22 February, at the Orthodox Centre of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Chambésy, near Geneva, in Switzerland. Metropolitan Ionnanis Zizioulas of Pergamos and Adramyttion (EP) presided over the discussions of the session, attended by representatives from the fourteen autocephalous Orthodox Churches, including a delegation of the MP led by Metropolitan Hilarion Alfeyev of Volokolamsk, the chairman of the MP DECR, with Archbishop Mark Arndt of Berlin and all Germany (ROCOR) and Archpriest Nikolai Balashov, the deputy chairman of the MP DECR as members, and A G Churyakov as translator.
The Commission, whose task is to make a preliminary study on the agenda of any future all-Orthodox Council, followed up its discussions of 2009 on the subject of the granting of a Tomos of Autocephaly. Despite a lengthy discussion, the conferees couldn’t reach a unanimous decision on this topic. Thus, it acknowledged that the topic of autocephaly and the manner of its proclamation required further study. The Commission also discussed the topic of the Diptychs of the First Hierarchs of the Autocephalous Local Churches, examined the canonical and ecclesiological aspects involved, described the current practise of the Church in this matter, and studied the present criteria for the inclusion of a Local Church in the Sacred Diptychs and how the order of the First Hierarchs is fixed, as well as noting a need to have a common form of the Diptychs for all the Local Churches in future.
The commission examined the request of the Polish and Albanian Local Churches for standardisation involving the placement of their First Hierarchs in the Sacred Diptychs of the Autocephalous Local Churches. It proposed that these requests merited further study, and that it should study appropriate changes in the Diptychs. At the meeting, the commission also heard requests from the Local Church of Georgia concerning it being in the sixth place in the Sacred Diptychs of the Local Autocephalous Churches and from the Local Church of Cyprus concerning the promotion of its First Hierarch to a higher position in the Sacred Diptychs. At present, the members couldn’t reach a general agreement on these questions, as the differences in the Sacred Diptychs used by individual Local Churches have their origin in the lack of an all-Orthodox consensus regarding the number of Autocephalous Local Churches.
According to Article 16 of the Statute for Pre-Conciliar Inter-Orthodox Meetings, the conferees must approve papers on all topics of the agenda unanimously.
Members of the delegations of the various Autocephalous Local Churches at the commission meeting were as follows:
- Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople New Rome (EP): Metropolitan Emmanuel Adamakis of France, Archimandrite Bartholomaios Samaras, Protopresbyter Giorgios Tsetsis
- Patriarchate of Alexandria and all Africa: Archbishop Sergios Kykkotis of the Cape of Good Hope, Archimandrite Nikolaos Ioannidis
- Patriarchate of Antioch and all the East: Metropolitan John Yazigi of West and Central Europe, George Ghandour
- Patriarchate of Jerusalem and all Palestine: Metropolitan Isychios Kondogiannis of Capitolias, Protopresbyter George Dragas
- Patriarchate of Georgia: Metropolitan Gerasim Sharashenidze of Zugdidi and Tsaishi, Metropolitan Theodore Chuadze of Akhaltsikhe and Sapara, Archpriest George Zviadadze
- Patriarchate of Serbia: Metropolitan Amfilohije Radović of Montenegro and the Primorije, Bishop Irinej Bulović of Bačka
- Patriarchate of Romania: Secretary of the Office of the Holy Synod Gheorghe Grigoritsa
- Patriarchate of Bulgaria: Metropolitan Neofit Dimitrov of Ruse, Professor Pavel Pavlov
- Church of Cyprus: Metropolitan Georgios Papachrysostomou of Paphos and Exarch of Arsinoe and Romaeon, Bishop Christophoros Tsiakas of Karpasia
- Church of Greece: Metropolitan Ignatios Georgakopoulos of Demetrias and Almyros, Protopresbyter Stefan Avramidis
- Church of Albania: Metropolitan Demetrios Dikbasanis of Gjirokastër, Pirros Kondylis
- Church of Poland: Archbishop Jeremy Ancimiuk of Wrocław and Szczecin, Priest Andrzej Kuzma
- Church of Czechia and Slovakia: Archbishop Juraj Stransky of Michalovce and Košice
Secretaries of the Commission were Metropolitan Ieremias Kalligiorgis of Lausanne and all Switzerland and Professor Blasius Fidas (both EP).
26 February 2011
Official MP Website
Since nothing of note came out of this meeting, it means that the MP is standing by the earlier declaration of December 2009 regarding autocephaly. That formulation contains nothing that’s of comfort to the autocephalist extremists in the OCA. If you haven’t read it, click here for my translation of the Russian original (I know, I’ve given the link before, it’s for the latecomers, kids). It’s clear that there’s no joy in Mudville… Mighty Casey has struck out. What the OCA needed was some sort of statement from the Centre supporting either their autocephaly or their initiative in sacking JP (but not sacking him openly). They got neither… in fact, the Blunder’s mouthpiece at Bolshaya Ordynka said, “We’re looking forward to more detailed information”. That is, the only hierarch at the Centre who supports them only issued a lukewarm acknowledgement, when they needed a hearty message of to-the-wall support. Let’s not be coy… the Blunder would put a Tokarev to Fathausen’s head and squeeze the trigger without compunction if he thought that it would advance his (rather large) ambitions by the smallest amount… “It’s not personal, it’s only business”. There’s no official reply to the OCA action to can El Gordo on patiarchia.ru as of 14.30 EST today. That doesn’t bode well for autocephalist fanatics such as Mark Stokoe, Ted Bobosh, and Eric Wheeler. It also doesn’t boost the chances of expedient apparatchiki such as Lyonyo Kishkovsky, Iggy Burdikoff, or Alexei Karlgut. KMG is letting them stew… that’s his way… they take the long view in Moscow.
Is this das Ende for the OCA? Damned if I know… but I’ll be willing to say that I wouldn’t bet the mortgage payment on their survival. I’m told that Mel Pleska HATES Fathausen, all of his queer buddies (were they all brought together by Podmoshensky?), and the OCA homosexual cabal in general, he wants to hang the lot of ‘em from the nearest sour-apple tree… after all, didn’t Ted Bobosh, Mark Stokoe, Gregory Nescott, Faith Skordinski, Alice Woog, and Eric Wheeler cover up the gay blade antics of l’Huillier, Lazor, Storheim, Soraich, and Swaiko in the ‘80s (as they cover up for Peterson, Brittian, and Norris (at St Seraphim Cathedral in Texas) today… they haven’t changed one bit)? Don’t forget… Stokoe only turned against Herman after Herman supported Bobby K in the fight for power at Syosset, opposing Stokoe, Wheeler, and their gang. Mind you, Bobby’s no shining prize either (he’s just an openly nasty and conniving SOB, whereas Stokoe is a conniving SOB with a smarmy “nice” exterior)… but Stokoe turned against Herman because of his feud with Bobby… Stokoe and all of his autocephalist pals supported Herman’s nasty actions in Mayfield in the ‘80s to the max. Never forget that… it means that Mark Stokoe is a mean-ass SOB when he thinks that he has power. He showed no mercy to the folks in Mayfield… he’ll show none to you, either.
All in all, not a boring weekend, wot?