Athens, April 1, 2019
The Church of Greece has been perhaps the quietest of the Local Churches on the Ukrainian issue. While individual hierarchs have voiced views on the matter, neither the Holy Synod or Bishops’ Council nor the primate His Beatitude Archbishop Ieronymos of Athens have made any statement and religious commentators disagree on which way the Church is leaning regarding the question of recognizing the Ukrainian nationalist church created by Constantinople.
Against this background, a delegation from the Patriarchate of Constantinople met with Abp. Ieronymos today to discuss the burning issue, reports Romfea.
Constantinople was represented by Metropolitan Emmanuel of Gaul, who presided over the “unification council” that created the new schismatic church, and Metropolitan Amphilochios of Adrianopolis, who was enthroned thanks to Patriarch Bartholomew’s interference in episcopal elections in Ioannina and serves as head of the Constantinople representation in Athens that was opened with the consent of the hierarchs of the Greek Church, and who has declared that Orthodoxy without the Ecumenical Patriarchate would only be Protestantism.
The parties at the session “exchanged views and expressed mutual concern.” The Greek primate assured the Phanar representatives that he is closely monitoring the Ukrainian situation and that the Church will express its official position on the issue at the upcoming plenary meeting of the hierarchy.
The Holy Synod of the Greek Church previously authorized two Synodal commissions, on dogmatic and canonical issues, and on inter-Orthodoxy and inter-Christian relations, to study the issue more in-depth.
The commissions will then submit their recommendations to the entire episcopate of the Greek Orthodox Church. The Holy Synod also previously resolved to pass the issue onto the Bishops’ Council, which includes all bishops of the Greek Church. The Bishops’ Council will meet again in October unless an emergency session is called.
It was previously reported that the Greek Church is under political, economic, and diplomatic pressure to recognize the Ukrainian schismatics.
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