Archbishop of Greece rejects Patriarch of Jerusalem‘s invitation, refuses to attend any Synod not called by Constantinople

Athens, November 22, 2019

Archbishop Ieronymos with American Ambassador Geoffrey Pyatt. Photo: Archbishop Ieronymos with American Ambassador Geoffrey Pyatt. Photo:

Yesterday, His Beatitude Patriarch Theophilos of Jerusalem called his brother primates to come together in a Synaxis of the Primates in Jordan to seek resolutions to the current problems of Church unity.

The invitation came during his acceptance speech at annual award ceremony for the Patriarch Alexei II Prizes of the International Public Foundation for the Unity of Orthodox Christian Peoples:

We would like to host, in our home as the Patriarchate of Jerusalem, our brothers, the primates of the Orthodox Church, to gather in the spirit of fellowship—koinonia—so that counsel will be taken together for the preservation of our unity in Eucharistic communion. The unity of the Church in faith and life is a gift of the Holy Spirit, but it is our God-given responsibility—as those to whom the ministry of our Churches, being the mystical body of Christ, has been entrusted—to guard the unity of the Church, even to the point of undergoing sacrifice. We have no choice before God but to commit every effort to defend our unity.

We take this opportunity, therefore, to declare open our home in the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, for hosting this “fraternal gathering in love” so that together we may be a witness to the Church and to the world of the unity of the Orthodox Church and our Orthodox faith.

However, Archbishop Ieronymos of Athens , the President of the Holy Synod of the Church of Greece, who was the first primate to recognize the schismatic “Orthodox Church of Ukraine” after Patriarch Bartholomew, told journalists that he will not attend any such Synaxis, reports the Orthodoxia News Agency.

“Not everyone can call a pan-Orthodox council. It is the prerogative of the Ecumenical Patriarch. If the Ecumenical Patriarch calls us we will not say no; if anyone in charge of any other Church calls us I will say no,” the Archbishop explained.

Conversely, the Russian Orthodox Church received the Patriarch’s initiative to preserve Church unity quite favorably.

“His Beatitude Patriarch Theophilos of Jerusalem took the initiative to invite the primates of the Orthodox Churches to Jordan to discuss together the preservation of Church unity. In the context of the ongoing crisis in inter-Orthodox relations, which, unfortunately, is only getting worse, this proposal seems very timely, and we welcome it in every possible way,” Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, the Chairman of the Synodal Department for External Church Relations told Interfax-Religion today.

Abp. Ieronymos also met with Geoffrey Pyatt, the American Ambassador to Greece, today, who noted that the Ukrainian issue is a hot topic in the American capital as of late.

Ambassador Pyatt, who is known to have played a leading role in the 2014 Maidan in Kiev when he was Ambassador to Ukraine, and who pressured several Greek bishops to recognize the schismatic OCU, also gave Abp. Ieronymos a letter from U.S. Ambassador at Large for International Religious Freedom Samuel Brownback, in which he expressed his respect for the Archbishop’s decision to recognize the OCU.

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William11/23/2019 3:19 am
What a tragic spectacle to witness a Bishop of the Kingdom of God take his direction and instructions from his political masters. Can anyone seriously believe the the Greeks and the EP are being used yet again for political interests.
Ortho-Ellinas11/22/2019 9:14 pm
Weak men,corruptible men,all over Greece,for a people with such a RICH and long history, at the crossroads of history and strategic geography, sandwiched today among 4 giant powers(Re-surging ORTHODOX Russia,China,muslims and the west) we don't realize we made a deal with the wicked powers of the west against our only TRUE friend among them the Orthodox Russians....I understand that the wicked west has invested in us since the 1800's((OWNING Greece ,through monetary indebtedness,corruption,puppet govnts,fear mongering by playing us and the turks against each other and the Orthodox church infiltration))....NOT easy to disconnect/dislodge from this ,it's embedded deep in Greece.....BUT so was/is? the Orthodox church , can a re-surge of Orthodoxy happen in Greece as is happening in Russia ....we have to pray
Ortho-Ellinas11/22/2019 7:03 pm
In my opinion it's a combination of heavy political pressure, with favors,money etc...attached(goodies for the church institutions) so he may actually believe he did/is doing the right thing....Greece is sooooo thoroughly corrupt, weak,corruptible men in positions of power make such decisions....Archbishop of Piraeus would have been the right MAN for that position, but .....
Theodoros11/22/2019 6:09 pm
When archbishop ieronymos was elected in 2008 there were fears he would be bartholomews puppet. These fears have been realized, I fervently hope and pray that patriarch theophilos stands firm and resists the pressures being exerted. The real leadership in the church of greece is led by metropolitan seraphim of Piraeus and seraphim of kythira. May God strengthen them in the fight to restore Orthodoxy to the church of greece.
PD11/22/2019 4:53 pm
I’m sorry but enough already! If we have to wait on Bartholomew, a council is never going to be called to resolve the matter and that is what the Orthodox faithful around the world desperately need right now - resolution and clarity. The status quo cannot continue. Let’s have the meeting in Jordan as soon as possible. Those who attend should unite and break communion with those who don’t. And for those who choose to stick with the ethnophylitist, US puppet, wanna-be pope Bartholomew, well good luck and enjoy your communion with Rome!
Mikhail11/22/2019 4:22 pm
He will not meet in council to discuss the tragically developing Church schism. But he will meet as often as possible with Geoffrey Pyatt and Samuel Brownback. Anaxios!!!
Menas11/22/2019 3:17 pm
Do these men not fear God? My guess is that he knows what will happen to them at a church council. Anaxios to the Ecumenical Patriarch
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