New York, June 25, 2019
As OrthoChristian reported yesterday, Archbishop Elpidophoros was enthroned as the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America’s (GOARCH) seventh primate at the Archdiocesan Cathedral of the Holy Trinity in Manhattan on Saturday.
The enthronement service was led by Metropolitan Augustinos of Germany as Patriarch Bartholomew’s personal representative, as GOARCH falls within the jurisdiction of the Patriarchate of Constantinople. The service was also attended by representatives of all Orthodox jurisdictions serving in America, as well as representatives from the Catholic, and Coptic, and other confessions.
Notably, the Liturgy and enthronement were also attended by two representatives from the Moscow Patriarchal Parishes in America: Abbot Nicodemus Balyasnikov and Fr. Mark Rashkov of the St. Nicholas Russian Orthodox Cathedral in New York City.
Although the Russian Orthodox Church suspended communion with the Patriarchate of Constantinople in October over the latter’s interference in Ukrainian Church affairs, the Russian Church continues to recognize the hierarchs, clergy, and faithful of the Patriarchate of Constantinople as fellow members of the one Orthodox Church, to which the Russian delegation’s presence on Saturday bears witness.
In an interview in April, His Eminence Archbishop Theodosy of Boyarka of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church explained that “of course grace continues to operate in the Sacraments of the Church of Constantinople. It would be strange to think that at the Liturgy celebrated today, for example, at St. Panteleimon’s Monastery on Mt. Athos, the bread and wine were not transformed into the Body and Blood of Christ.”
Frs. Nicodemus and Mark did not serve, but stood in the congregation with the faithful gathered from around the world for the celebration.
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