Protocol No. v-920                                Athens May 12/25, 2007

 

To His Eminence Agafangel,

Bishop of Taurida and Odessa,

and to the Clergy and Faithful

of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad

 

Beloved Brothers in Christ!  Take Joy in God!

           

            Christ’s Church is concerned with the salvation of its flock and always teaches its members how to guard against false pastors, who strive to mislead the sensible sheep of Christ from the field of true faith.  It manifests this, by following the teachings of such saints as Maxim the Confessor, who states that “each person is sanctified by the just confession of the true faith,” and equally, by observing the instructions of the holy canons, such as the 31st Apostolic canon and the 15th canon of the First/Second Council.

 

            The Greek Church of the True Orthodox Christians is deeply saddened by the merger of a part of the Russian Church Abroad with the Moscow Patriarchate, which occurred on the feast day of the Ascension of Our Lord, as the Patriarchate has not repented and has not condemned the heresies of sergianism and ecumenism.

 

            On the contrary, the Moscow Patriarchate continues to participate in the World Council of Churches and in deceptive ecumenical “dialogues of love.”  At the same time, Patriarch Alexy competes with Patriarch Bartholomew by taking part in joint prayers with Buddhists, Muslims, Jews, and members of other faiths.

 

            In these circumstances, the union of the Russian Church Abroad with the Moscow Patriarchate means that this Church, which strictly adhered in the past to the precepts of the Holy Fathers, has entered into Eucharistic communion with ecumenical churches.

 

            The Greek Church of the True Orthodox Christians is grateful to the Russian Church Abroad for the ordination fifty years ago of bishops for our church, when, as a result of persecution from New Calendarists, our Church was without bishops.

 

            Our Church was in full Eucharistic communion with the Russian Church Abroad, which was led by Metropolitan Philaret of Blessed Memory, who conciliarly anathematized ecumenism.

 

            Metropolitan Laurus, when he was a bishop, visited Greece and served with the bishops of our Church to strengthen the Eucharistic communion with our Church.  Therefore it is clearly understandable, that we are deeply saddened that a part of the Russian Church Abroad, which followed Metropolitan Laurus, ended its existence in such a manner. 

 

            It is comforting that a significant part of the clergy and laypeople of the Russian Church Abroad resisted subordinating to the forces of sergianism and ecumenism, gathered around Your Eminence, and remains true to the traditions of their Church.  We congratulate you with your steadfastness in truth.

 

            We, the True Orthodox Christians living in Greece, Serbia and in the diaspora, see in you our compatriots and combatants in our common, holy battle to preserve the traditions of the Holy Fathers.  We ask Almighty God to send down Great Blessings to you and strengthen you on the path of pure confession of faith, so that you may follow the instructions and example of Metropolitan Philaret of Blessed Memory and avoid all possible uncanonical actions.

 

 

 

 

 

Holy Synod

Synod Chairman:

+Chrysostomos, Archbishop of Athens and All Elladi

 

Synod Members:

+Akakios, Metropolitan of Attica and Davleia

+Maximos, Metropolitan of Thessalonika and Dimitrias

+Kallinikos, Metropolitan of Achaia and All Peloponnesos

+Stephanos, Metropolitan of Chios, Psaros, and Oinousses

+Justin, Metropolitan of Euripos and Euboia

+Gerontios, Metropolitan of and Piraeus and Salamis

+Chrysostomos, Metropolitan of Attica and Boiotia

+Gregory, Bishop of Christianoupolis

+Photios, Bishop of Marathon

+Theodosios, Bishop of Bresthene

 

______________________________________________

 

Letter of Reply

to the members of the Holy Synod

under the chairmanship of Most Reverend Chrysostomos,

Archbishop of Athens and All of Elladi

 

Your Eminence, Your Eminences!

 

            Thank you for your prayers and words of support, spoken to us in these difficult times for the Russian Church Abroad.  The fact that you addressed the remnants of the Church Abroad, shows that you treat all our problems with consideration and are not indifferent to them.

 

            I completely share your opinion on ecumenism, which will, in the future, certainly become the most relentless and merciless persecutor of true Orthodoxy.  That is why we cannot join or participate in any way in this essentially anti-Christian movement.  Instead, we must strictly guard the Tradition of our Holy Fathers.

 

            It is quite apparent that the “world rulers of this century” wish to divide us from one another, since all of us, if joined together, may become an obstacle to the overall globalization and centralization of world power, which prepares for the pending arrival of the Antichrist.  The “World Order” of the future will somehow still tolerate groups of “religious fanatics,” who are small in number, localized, and who fight amongst themselves.  May we not become such groups, and instead, witness to all that we are true disciples of our Lord, Jesus Christ, and may there be amity between us.

 

            That is why the unity, or goodwill to one another in the meanwhile, of all True Orthodox Christians becomes especially important in these grievous times we all live in. 

 

            Please accept my most genuine gratitude to you, my dear brothers in Christ.  I sincerely hope that the day will come soon, when we can turn to one another with a pure heart and the words, “Christ is among us!”  May this be soon and without delay!

 

            With genuine affection and kindly disposed towards you,

            Chairman of the ROCA PSCA

            +Agafangel, Bishop of Taurida and Odessa

 

Odessa, July 25/August 7, 2007

Dormition of the Righteous Anna, mother of the Most Holy Theotokos.