Antiochian Synod Prepares for Upcoming “Great and Holy Synod” 2016

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Antiochian Synod meets october 07 2014

October 11, 2014 (Source: http://antiochian.org)

The Synod of the Antiochian Patriarchate met recently on October 07 of this year. Among the matters discussed was the recent ecumenical conference held with the Roman Catholics in Amman, Jordan. The conference was hosted by the ecumenist Patriarch  of Jerusalem, Theophilos III.  The Antiochian Synod confirmed the work of the conference, and, in fact, referenced the work of the ecumenist conference as preparatory for the so-called “Great and Holy Council” that the Ecumenical Patriarchate will hold in 2016. The Synod stated:

“The fathers reviewed the results of the Orthodox-Catholic dialogue that was held in Amman, Jordan this past September. They stressed the necessity of serious work in order to remove all the obstacles to this dialogue and to the hoped-for unity in a spirit of love and openness, that the Christian world might be able to realize prayer of the Lord “that they may be one.”

The fathers likewise reviewed the work of the preparatory committee for the great Orthodox council which met in Chambésy, Switzerland at the beginning of October, 2014 and took note of the working paper that it prepared regarding the relationship between the Orthodox churches and the Christian world.

In this regard, the fathers expressed their hope that the preparatory work for the great council will be effective for a united Orthodox witness in today’s world which thirsts for a word of life.”

 

The ecumenical goal of the eventual and gradual merger of all different religions, which has already stared by the allowance of joint-prayer with heterodox, and ecumenical meetings is already deeply ingrained in the life of the different World Patriarchates. However, such activity is condemned as contrary to the Orthodox Faith by the True Orthodox Christians.  The Antiochian Patriarchate is perhaps the most ecumenists of all the World Patriarchates; they have themselves already achieved official intercommunion agreements with the Syro-Jacobite Monophysites (removing the anathemas proclaimed against those who don’t recognize the Council of Chalcedon); even allowing concelebration with them. The Antiochian Patriarchate, along with the Phanar and others, also continues to affirm Muslims as ‘brothers’; even stating that supposedly Christian and Muslims together can reach ‘sound Faith.’  Far from in any way backing away from Patriarch Ignatius IV Hakim’s policy of broad based ecumenical heresy, Patriarch John X has affirmed his commitment.

In this time of apostasy and crisis, the True Orthodox must make every effort to propound the Orthodox teaching to a world that has been lied to by the World Patriarchates about what Orthodoxy really is. Indeed, we can remember what St. Raphael of Brooklyn (1860-1915) did, who had previously been deceived by ecumenist Anglicans (the real founders of the ecumenical movement and the importers of ecumenism into Orthodox circles) into thinking they were Orthodox. St. Raphael did not merely repudiate his former decree of allowing Orthodox to take communion from them in extreme situations (under the presumption that they were Orthodox), but, went further and said that Orthodoxy was wasting its time in talks with the Anglicans (at that time, the discussion had not reached a level of joint prayer; nor seeking to change Church Tradition, such as the Calendar). St. Raphael state:

 

Experience has forced upon me the conviction that to promote courtesy and friendship, which seems to be the only aim of the Union at present, not only amounts to killing precious time, at best, but also is somewhat hurtful to the religious and ecclesiastical welfare of the Holy Orthodox Church in these United States… I view union as only a pleasing dream. Indeed, it is impossible for the Holy Orthodox Church to receive—as She has a thousand times proclaimed, and as even the Papal See of Rome has declaimed to the Holy Orthodox Church’ s credit—anyone into Her Fold or into union with Her who does not accept Her Faith in full without any qualifications—the Faith which She claims is most surely Apostolic. (Letter of Resignation from the Anglican and Orthodox Churches Union, published in the Russian Orthodox Messenger, February 18, 1912)

 

Sadly, the experiences of St. Raphael, and his early recognition of the harmfulness and danger of such behaviour went unheeded in future decades by the World Patriarchates; each, one by one, succumbing, to ecumenism either via the introduction of the New Calendar, or through the deprivations of Sergianism and Modernism.  In such a context, True Orthodox Christianity must present both an apologetic against theses heresies and schisms of the Ecumenist Patriarchates, as well as seeking to enlighten and inoculate those who come to the Church from such heresies and lures of the heretical false World Patriarchates.

 

  • HmkEnoch

    I find the case of the Antiochian Patriarchate one of the most interesting, and it somewhat proves my believe in many ‘fighting from within’ folks essentially not taking the issues of ecumenism seriously. The Antiochian (and Alexandria) Patriarchates have had communion agreements on an official level with condemned heterodox churches for a very long time. Alexandria, I believe, since 1999; Antioch since 1991. Antioch’s agreements with Syro-Jacobite Monophysites is very strong; it states they allow concelebration and communion (as opposed to communion). Often ‘fighting from within’ folks will say, “When Constantinople goes into communion with Rome, if that happens, then I’ll leave; I’ll admit you have been correct about what we should do.” Yet! when it comes the Antiochian Patriarchate sharing full and uncontested union with the Syro-Jacobites, you hear complaints, but, everyone just accepts it; however, why do they a communion agreement between Rome and Constantinople to be the breaking point, but the already achieved intercommunion between the Syro-Jacobites and Antioch is not worth taking any action over? When this agreement was reached with the Syro-Jacobites, the only person in the Middle East who issued any kind of protest was Pat. Diodoros. But that’s been consigned to the dustbin.

    The concept of ‘eastern ecumenism’ has been tacitly accepted by the vast, vast, vast majority of World Orthodox as acceptable in some sense; at the very least, it is not viewed as major obstacle to communion with Antioch. The fact that it was so gladly accepted by the Antiochians without any fight or protest, threat of breach of communion, from any of their bishops, is telling that the Antiochian Patriarchate had long since given up the ghost on Orthodoxy (at least when Constantinople proclaimed union with Rome at Lyons in the 1200s and again in the 1400s, you had a number of bishops and clergy who were vocal about being opposed to it, and severing communion; let’s not forget that Esphigmenou has a lot of monks burned to death on the orders of the Patriarch of Constantinople because of their vocal resistance). With fellow ‘easterners’, because their exterior rites and ceremonies look much closer to the tradition of the Great Church, and their clergy dress the same or very similar, the attitude is one of compromising the Faith because of ‘the eastern look’.

    Of course, many remember how Abp. Laurus during the 1990s seemed to try and provide some defence of the Antiochians actions by saying, “They are trying to make the Syro-Jacobites Orthodox”; but, this was either the wishful thinking based upon blatantly ignoring all the facts, or, perhaps more probably, it was an attempt to prepare people for such a future union with Antioch and the others. True; many, I am told, believed that supposedly Antioch had cancelled this arrangement supposedly in the later 1990s, but, that’s not true. Read the statements of Pat. Ignatius IV Hakim, and Pat. John X, and others. The World Orthodox ‘officialdom’ have managed to construct, in the past, a well-prepared rumor mill system that has the purpose of dampening criticism by presenting erroneous scenarios (for example, many of us remember how for some time it was constantly said that “the Georigan Patriarchate has become anti-ecumenist”, when in reality, if one studies the issue over against the hopeful and wishful thinking of some and the intentional distortion of others, that this was not the case with their withdrawal from the ECC and WCC).

    So, if Eastern Patriarchates having communion with anathematized heretics and removing anathemas is not going to convince many to flee these bodies, why would Constantinople’s communion with Rome convince them to leave?

  • Alex Ageev

    Looking at the preparation for this Holy and Great Council it seems that our unity is in the name alone, since most of the real and important questions will not be discussed for example granting of Autocephally which is pretty much blocked by Constantinople due to Papal ambitions. For example Orthodox Church of America was granted Autocephally by her mother Church, the Russian Orthodox Church in 1970’s and OCA is not being recognized as the 15th local Orthodox Church mainly because of the position of His All Holiness Ecumunical Patriarch Bartholomew who has a mind set of a Roman Catholic Pope and believes that it is Constantinople that should have that right. In all the reality however all bishops sit on Peter’s throne and all are equal just like all Orthodox Churches are equal and the title of first amongst equal does not give a privilage to ignor the 2000 year old tradition. Another important topic that will not be discussed is the diptych which is a list of names used by an autocephalous church to commemorate the primates of all the world’s autocephalous churches.The list should look something like this:

    Autocephalous Church

    1. Constantinople

    2.Alexandria

    3. Antioch

    4. Jerusalem

    5. Russian

    6. Georgian

    7. Serbian

    8. Romanian

    9. Bulgarian

    10. Cyprus

    11.Church of Greece

    12. Albania

    13. Polish

    14. Czech Lands and Slovakia

    15.American and Canadian

    It also seems that it is precisly Churches like the Russian Orthodox Church, Georgian Orthodox Church, Romanian Orthodox Church, Serbian Orthodox Church, Jerusalem Orthodox Church Polish Orthodox Church, and ofcourse the cradle of Orthodoxy Mountain Athos that are keeping our Orthodox faith traditional and are trying to preserve that unity in the fullness of faith. Another subject that is not being discussed is the Calendar issue. Our church has been on the same Calendar for 1923 years until ecumenist movement of Patriarch Meletios and Athenogoras and others who

    decided to betray that calendar and de facto cause a split amongst the Orthodox faithful. Absolutely nothing positive came out of that move to the so called “revised Julian calendar’ which is nothing more than abandonment of unity with the One Holy and Apostolic Church and false unity with the schismatic Roman Catholic Church and the multitude of Protestant sects that have completly abandoned the true christianity. It also the result of formation of various Old Calendarist schisms that develope as the result of that deviation from UNITY when we all celebrated all of our feasts together like true brothers and sisters in Christ.