In a rather interesting conference, the memory and writings of St. Maximus the Confessor are being celebrated and lauded by the Serbian Patriarchate and others. St. Maximus was a Father who stood up against the entire patriarchal establishment of his time, in order to defend Orthodoxy. He participated in the 649 Lateran Synod, with his friend and co-worker in Orthodoxy, St. Martin the Confessor, Pope of Old Rome. St. Maximus would not submit to communion with the Eastern Patriarchates that had fallen into heresy; for which he (and St. Martin) were horribly tortured by the Emperor of the Eastern Emperor, with the approval of the entire Patriarchal establishment. St. Maximus, and the Bishops in the Orthodox Church in the West, of course, were against the Eastern patriarchates because they had fallen into the heresy of monothelitism. The Orthodox of the West (and the few who remained faithful in the east, including the area we now call ‘Greece’ which commemorated the Patriarchate of Old Rome until 100 years later), refused communion with the East until it had renounced monothelitism. And, as mentioned above, these bishops, clergy, and even simple monks like St. Maximus, paid an high price (but, small in comparison to the reward of salvation).
The new successor to Sergius I of Constantinople (the promoted of the heresy of monothelitism), Bartholomew (Archontonis) who addressed the assembly stated:
“The Saints represent God’s gift to the world, precious beacons within the darkness of this transient world, and an example to be followed leading us to our final goal – the Kingdom of God.”
Indeed. Yet, the sad fact is that many, like Bartholomew (Archontonis) do not see the truth starring them in the face. While they persecuted the poor monks of Mt. Athos, and their friends in Russia persecute the simplest laity in Suzdal, Russia, they ignore what St. Maximus stood for, even if they ‘historically’ speak of it. The new heresy of ecumenism which holds the patriarchates in its possession has far surpassed even monothelitism in its damage.