Former Archbishop Gregory (Abu-Assaly) of ROAC’s now-defunct Denver Archdiocese reports in his weekly newsletter that he is a victim of a campaign of slander on the part of “self-proclaimed laymen” and that Metropolitan Valentine of Suzdal and Vladimir, First-Hierarch of the ROAC, should be deposed. Denying the fact of his retirement and removal from the Synod of the ROAC last year, Archbishop Gregory blamed his current status on a “dominated Synod” that “will not go in the slightest” against the Metropolitan, regardless of the fact that the membership of the Synod is exactly the same as it was when the former Archbishop was consecrated, thus implying that in actual fact the Synod had no interest in electing him to the Episcopate as a group. Citing his “years of service to the Church”, Gregory proceeded to attack the English edition of the news Journal Vertograd, claiming that in fact the use of the word “former” (in the English edition) was blessed by the Metropolitan.
The new charges on the Internet stem from an accident on Sunday involving NFTU and the English Edition of Vertograd, both maintained by Joseph Suaiden. The original article, which appeared in NFTU a few hours before the English edition, contained a reference to Gregory of Denver as a “former Archbishop”, reflecting both his current ecclesiastical status in ROAC and his current actual status of having no Archdiocese. For the sake of expediency, most of the text in the NFTU article was then used in the Vertograd English edition. This prompted an immediate response from Dormition Skete which was then passed to Internet lists on May 13 through DS lay representative Shafiq Tadros.
The letter further claims that the Metropolitan infringed on the crypto-Papal and worldwide “authority” claimed by former Archbishop Gregory. It should be noted that the diocese of the former Archbishop was claimed in his own writings– including his accusation to the Synod–to include North and South America, Korea, Bulgaria and Baltic republics, in flagrant violation of the canons.
The former Archbishop of Denver was Archbishop of his see for four months before the Synod removed him. He has publically yet not found any True Orthodox Synod willing to accept him as a Bishop and on his website claims himself to be “The Synod of the ROAC”. NFTU