Antioch appoints Patriarchal Vicar for North American Archdiocese

Balamand, Lebanon, October 25, 2022

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His Beatitude Patriarch John X of Antioch and All the East appointed a Patriarchal Vicar for North America yesterday, to guide the Archdiocese in the transition period following the resignation of Metropolitan Joseph.

Met. Joseph, who served as head of the Archdiocese from 2014, submitted his letter of resignation on September 17 after a woman came forth with claims that she had been romantically involved with him for many years. His resignation was formally accepted by the Antiochian Holy Synod earlier this month.

In a statement published yesterday, Pat. John announced the appointment of His Eminence Metropolitan Antonios (El Souri) of Zahle, Baalbek, and Dependencies, as Patriarchal Vicar of the Archdiocese of New York and All North America. His duties are to manage the affairs of the Archdiocese and oversee the process of nominating a new Metropolitan.

The relevant statement reads in full:

To our Beloved in the Lord, the Hierarchs, Priests, Deacons, Board of Trustees, and Faithful of our Antiochian Archdiocese of New York and All North America:

We greet you warmly and prayerfully in Christ, asking the Lord to keep you safe.

We inform you of our Decision No. 118, dated October 24, 2022, by which we appoint a Patriarchal Vicar for the Archdiocese of New York and All North America.

We hope that you will cooperate with the Patriarchal Vicar for the welfare of the Archdiocese.

We inform you that, from now on, the Patriarch of Antioch is commemorated in all divine services.

With our prayers and Apostolic blessings.

Balamand, 24 October 2022.

Patriarch of Antioch and All the East

Patriarchal decision (118)

We, JOHN X, Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Antioch and All the East, based on the Basic Statute of the See of Antioch issued in 1972 and the provisions of the Internal Regulations of the See of Antioch issued in 1983, decide the following:

Article 1: The appointment of His Eminence Metropolitan ANTONIOS El Souri, Metropolitan of Zahle, Baalbek and Dependencies, as Patriarchal Vicar of the Archdiocese of New York and All North America.

Article 2: The Patriarchal Vicar shall perform the tasks entrusted to him by the provisions of the general ecclesiastical law and the Antiochian laws.

Article 3: This decision shall be published and all those concerned shall be notified. It shall be effective from the date of its issue.

Balamand, 24 October 2022.

Patriarch of Antioch and All the East

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Michael Zelesnik11/5/2022 5:24 am
Our canonical Orthodox jurisdictions in North America really need to come together as one Orthodox Church in North America. The Antiochian Ortodox commujity in the 1950’s use to have 2 distinct jurisdictions groups in America. It took a courage Bishop in North America to over come his pride and unite the two distinct Antiochian Communities. I pray the Antiochian Bishops in North America and our new Metropolitan and Patriarch John will find the same courage of our Antiochian Bishops in the 1950 to be the leaders to unite all of our Orthodox different Jurisdictions in North America. When my children grew up and left home I was at first sad. Soon I realized it is good that my children grew up well and were ready to be independent. The various Orthodox jurisdictions in North America Will ever be greatful to our Mother Churches who provided us priests and leadership. The canonical Orthodox communities in North America have grown up well with the guidance of our Mother Churches. It is time for the Mother Churches to let let the Orthodox flock in North America become independent. Pray we all over one Pride and Unite.
Kenneth L. Milhem11/3/2022 3:56 pm
We desperately need Metropolitan Archbishop to lead our church with vigorous energy, forward thinking , articulate,English speaking leader with many plans to move we in North America forward . We have been stagnant for too many years . Why are none of our current bishops here not a worthy choice to lead us. The trust in North America that the Patriarch will apoint a leader that will be loyal to him before the best interest of our diocese is rampant here in North America. The wrong choice at this time could start the demise of our church this country.
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