Patriarch Ilia of Georgia will not attend fraternal gathering in Jordan

Tbilisi, February 17, 2020     

His Holiness Patriarch-Catholicos Ilia II of Georgia will not be attending the upcoming fraternal gathering in Amman, Jordan, organized by the Patriarchate of Jerusalem.

Pat. Ilia’s English-language response to the invitation of His Beatitude Patriarch Theophilos of Jerusalem, dated February 7, was published by today.

Unlike the Greek Churches that are refusing to participate, Pat. Ilia declines not because he believes that bishops can only be gathered by the Patriarch of Constantinople, but because, as he writes, the desired result can only be attained if every primate participates in the gathering.

“But if this consent cannot be attained, we will refrain from coming for the gathering,” the Georgian primate writes.

However, he assures the Patriarch of Jerusalem that “We understand very well that your efforts are conditioned by your care about the unity in the Church and your desire to help heal wounds.”

His Holiness also assures the Pat. Theophilos that “We share your position and according to the seriousness of the present circumstances and in connection with the problematic issues, we consider that the convocation and mutual discussion is very necessary.”

Pat. Ilia also emphasizes that the issues at hand “do harm to our unity,” and he expresses the hope that the issues can be worked out as soon as possible.

While the State Department-funded outlet Orthodox Times writes that “the vast majority of Churches refuse to participate in the synaxis of Orthodox primates convened by Patriarch Theophilos of Jerusalem in Amman,” in fact, thus far, 6 Churches have publicly announced that they are attending, whether via their primate or other representative hierarchs: Jerusalem, Moscow, Serbia, Romania, Poland, and the Czech-Slovak Church, and 6 have publicly announced that they are not attending: Constantinople, Alexandria, Cyprus, Greece, Albania, and Georgia.   

Follow us on Facebook , Vkontakte, and Telegram!


Mikhail2/20/2020 3:32 pm
Now that I have thought about it for a few days, I agree with Maximus. His statement and position is weak. This is a cop out. St. Mark of Ephesus pray for us!
Maximus 2/18/2020 8:12 pm
Georgia’s response is weak in my opinion. It is acknowledged that a council is sorely needed, and they pray for one, but simultaneously refuse to participate in council! “If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, and one of you says to them, "Go in peace, be warmed and filled," without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that?” ‭‭James‬ ‭2:15-16‬ ‭ESV‬‬ I’m thinking that their territorial beef with Moscow has more to do with their absence. I’d prefer them to just say so. Patriarch Ilia feels threatened by Met. Hilarion Alfeyev and he’s tried to make peace with the ROC numerous times. Pat. Ilia made a statement which read: “At a time when, in the Tskhinvali [South Ossetia] region on a Russian military base the construction of a church is ongoing without any negotiation with us, and in Abkhazia the clerics [under] the Russian Church conduct non-canonic liturgies, the ambiguity of his (Met. Hilarion) statement sounds threatening,”
Ages2/18/2020 3:49 pm
On one hand I can see what he is saying. It is true that no consensus will be achieved if everyone is not present, so there is a risk for deepening a sense of factionalism. He is probably afraid of things turning out worse than they already are. On the other hand, there have been many cases in which matters have been discussed in the Church, at councils and "fraternal gatherings," without every church present, which have nonetheless resulted in binding decisions. Jerusalem has headed several such councils in the past. Patriarch Bartholomew has stated he will not sanction any gathering because the details have to be worked out beforehand. Where is the room for the Holy Spirit to work? How many times in history have hierarchs gone into a council as enemies and departed as brothers? Why must the Church operate according to the standard of human governments? It is disappointing that our Orthodox hierarchs are pleased to dialogue with Catholics and Protestants (even though such dialogues have never borne fruit in the form of people converting to Orthodoxy), while they are not willing to dialogue with their Orthodox brothers. Not just disappointing, it is shameful.
Mikhail2/18/2020 3:57 am
The Patriarch of Georgia says that convocation and mutual discussion is very necessary...but he won't attend. I don't understand. Something is askew.
Alexander Leitner2/17/2020 8:49 pm
Bartholomew is an orthodox Primate, he is a schismatic, ecumenist, modernists, hetetic. Depose him now
Theodoros2/17/2020 7:05 pm
While it would have been nice if all the churches went To jordon I think this gathering will still be of great Importance. Certainly I am happy to see this happening, much more so than the fake council of Crete. Positive signs include that patriarch Theophilos Resisted pressure from Washington, athens, Kiev, and phanar. I could be wrong but it appears no more Churches will recognize the schismatics. Also Patrisrch Theophilos is establishing that other Patriarchs can call councils, not just the phanar. I hope they make a statement condemning not only The actions of the phanar, but the governments that Instigated the whole crisis. This could be the free Church speaking. The Greek churches clearly are Not attending because they are in a new captivity.
Michael Lesway2/17/2020 6:09 pm
Well said your holiness!
Here you can leave your comment on the present article, not exceeding 4000 characters. All comments will be read by the editors of OrthoChristian.Com.
Enter through FaceBook
Your name:
Your e-mail:
Enter the digits, seen on picture:

Characters remaining: 4000

to our mailing list

* indicates required