Antiochian Patriarch Re-Affirms Communion With Monophysites

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Antiochian Patriarch Re-Affirms Communion With Monophysites

On February 17th, 2013, the Antiochian Patriarch, John X, issued an encyclical dealing with what he defined as pastoral issues. One chief issue was to re-affirm his commitment to all that his predecessor, Ignatius, had said and done. Chief among these, according to Patriarch John X is the supposed common Orthodoxy of the Antiochian Patriarchate and the Anti-Chalcedonian Monophysites Churches.

Specifically, Patriarch John stated:

“I insist on the importance of maintaining absolute respect between the Churches ignoring any arrogance, anathematizing, and schismatization.” (Sec. 9, pg. 10)

Thus, Patriarch John it seems renounces (as do most of the World Patriarchates) the usages of the Anathemas provided in the Synodikon and others official works of the Church of Christ.  But, this was already a long standing Antiochian practice, it now appears, of many decades, or at least 20 years or so, since limited intercommunion was achieved between Antioch and the Syro-Jacobite Monophysite churches in 1994 (with a similar agreement being worked out between the Alexandrian Patriarchate and the Coptic Church sometime ago, as well).

Patriarch John continues:

“I am deeply convinced that Orthodoxy, which is the basis of every interaction between us and other Churches, is a unifying factor, not a divisive one. I am also convinced that adhering to it is the right way. With love and humility, we strengthen the common factors that bind us all together. There will undoubtedly be differences, not in essentials, and this a source of propitious diversity. This shall be considered a richness to us, and not a deviation of our adherence to Christ.” (Sec. 9, pg. 10)

It should be noted, that, the Antiochian Patriarchate recongizes the essential Orthodoxy of these “other Churches”. Primarily, as mentioned above, and will be seen in a moment, he is speaking of the Monophysite Church. But, in this same section he speaks of believers in general. And, as Pat. John states, he sees no essential difference between the Antiochian Patriarchate and the Monophysite Church on Orthodoxy; thus, he confirms the complete overturning of the 4th, 5th, and 6th Ecumenical Councils as well as the Anathemas in the Synodikon.

The Patriarch continues:

“Therefore, we hope to accomplish all steps towards a full sacramental unity with our brethren in the Eastern non-Chalcedonian Churches based on what we have agreed upon in Chambesy as a positive result of a long and extensive dialogue.” (Sec. 9, pg. 10, para. 2)

Thus, we see the whole thrust. While official partial communion exists between the two bodies (and unofficial full communion), Pat. John’s intention is to reach official full communion with the Monophysite Church.  Is Pat. John really such an ignorant and bewildered man, not to understand this issue? I think not, but, I could be entirely wrong. However, since the Antiochian Patriarchate’s policy is well known, I would assume he agrees with this.

At this point, there is no point in those who believe in Orthodoxy and agree with the anathemas against those who refuse to accept Chalcedon and all 7 councils, to remain in the Antiochian Patriarchate. If it can be justified to remain, while all your bishops allow and encourage communion with non-Orthodox clergy and laity, while they also reject the anathemas of the Church, and over-turn the decrees of the Holy Ghost, then, what point is there in being Orthodox? Satan has apparently triumphed over the Church of Christ, and proven the Lord to be a liar! Christianity has failed, and there is no true revealed religion. But, far be it from the pious to accept this; rather, it is the Patriarchate of Antioch that has sadly left Orthodoxy.