Patriarch Bartholomew is preparing a new blow to the Russian Church

Patriarch Bartholomew is preparing a new blow to the Russian Church
MOSCOW, 16 Aug-RIA Novosti, Oleg Nalisnik. The Patriarch of Constantinople publicly called the faithful of the Russian Church "ungrateful children" — they do not want to obey or honor the schismatic "Orthodox Church of Ukraine" (PCU) that he created together with former Ukrainian President Poroshenko. In order to get recognition of his offspring, Bartholomew uses tricks. Read more about religious and political games in the RIA Novosti article.For a month and a half, Patriarch Bartholomew was silent. On June 30, he condemned in advance the decision of the Turkish authorities to turn Saint Sophia into a mosque, and then lay low. They say he waited until the hype died down.And here is on days again reminded about itself. Yes, even as: for the first time publicly identified the enemies of the Patriarchate of Constantinople. Oddly enough, they are, in his opinion, " inside the mother Church.""In fact, there are many of them, < ... & gt; they are also subjects of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, its spiritual descendants," he said. ("Ecumenical" in the sense of Bartholomew — Constantinople). We are talking about those whom he has already called "ungrateful children" - the believers of the Russian Church: for some reason, they refuse to recognize its primacy over the Orthodox."We continue to embrace everyone, enemies and friends, with our love, our prayer and our sensitivity, " Bartholomew said.But according to Orthodox canons, the only possible head of the Church is Christ, not a single Patriarch. All the metropolitans, archbishops, and bishops are just the primates of the congregation. They decide issues among themselves on the principle of consensus, that is, universal agreement.However, two years ago, the unity of the Orthodox world was disrupted precisely because of the ambitions of the Patriarch of Constantinople: he met the politicians from Ukraine and agreed to legalize local dissenters. At the same time, the faithful of the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church (UOC) did not ask for full independence. The UOC is only nominally part of the Russian Orthodox Church — according to the Charter, it is considered "self-governing" within the Moscow Patriarchate, and with unique "rights of broad autonomy".As a result of the rough interference of the Fanar (Istanbul district, where the administrative center of the Patriarchate of Constantinople is located) in Church Affairs in Ukraine, the Russian Church broke off communication with him. The Patriarch of Constantinople, bypassing the age-old canons, actually entered its territory. Instead of discussing the problem of the Ukrainian split, which has lasted for 30 years, Bartholomew gave the" Orthodox Church of Ukraine " a Tomos on autocephaly.After giving the PCU Tomos on January 6 last year, Fanar began a large-scale behind-the-scenes game. Patriarch Bartholomew promised that" soon " all 14 local churches of the world will recognize dissenters.This did not happen. For nine months, the idea was either openly condemned — as, for example, the Russian and Polish churches-or it was completely ignored. Among the "abstainers" - representatives of the" Greek family", connected by one language, ethnicity and liturgical rite.In addition to Constantinople, these are the churches of Alexandria, Jerusalem, Cyprus, and Hellas (actually Greek). The latter is the closest to Phanar — priests for the Patriarchate of Constantinople, based on the territory of Muslim Turkey, are trained in Athens. In addition, the Hellenic Church is financially dependent on the state — Greece sponsors the salary Fund of the clergy.In October last year Fanar still managed to affect the Church of Greece, and she recognized the Ukrainian self-consecrated ones. However, not unanimously-several bishops spoke against it. The most important principle of conciliarity (consensus) for Orthodoxy was violated.The Primate of the Hellenic Church was deceived by Phanar-Archbishop Hieronymus of Athens was invited to Istanbul to serve with Bartholomew. Jerome spent Vespers with the Patriarch and planned to stay the next day for the Liturgy. However, during the ceremony, it turned out that representatives of Ukrainian dissenters also pray in the Church.When the Archbishop learned of this, he did not attend Matins. However, the PCU propagandists presented this as their victory. After all, according to the canons, if one priest takes communion from the same Cup as another, it means that he considers him a "fellow in Christ". And if someone serves with the dissenters, they actually join them.A month after the incident, on November 8, 2019, the schismatic OCU was recognized by the Alexandrian Orthodox Church (centered in the Egyptian Alexandria — it historically feeds the African continent in the Orthodox world, and its hierarchy is formed mainly of Greeks). The media then wrote that the decision was made under pressure from Greek diplomats.And now the "Istanbul Patriarchate" is preparing to pull the same trick. This time, according to Ukrainian media, he chose the Jerusalem Orthodox Church as the number one target. It, like the Cypriot one, did not follow the lead of its Greek counterparts a year ago.Moreover, Patriarch Theophilus initiated a pan-Orthodox discussion of the Ukrainian split. The first attempt was made on February 26 in Amman. The meeting was attended by the heads and representatives of six local churches, although all were invited — including Bartholomew.And now the Patriarch of Jerusalem Theophilus was invited to Istanbul for a service on the occasion of the Church's new year on September 1. Heads and representatives of all "Greek" churches will attend the celebration. Obviously, members of the OCU will also be present."This method is the cheapest for phanariots: they have also suffered financially from the pandemic. And so they will lure Theophilus — and then trumpet that he served with the schismatics. He will have to explain what he did. As we can see from the example of the helladic Church, attempts to justify themselves later turned into the recognition of the ptsu by Bishop Jerome, " says a knowledgeable source in Ukrainian Church circles.In turn, a person close to the leadership of the Jerusalem Church, in a conversation with RIA Novosti, emphasizes: Patriarch Theophilus is now "more than ever in a difficult situation." He is under pressure not only from Phanar representatives, but also from influential members of the Greek Diaspora. Some are big donors."Despite this, it is unlikely that Theophilus will go to Istanbul. Now in the Greek world, it is he who is gaining strength, not Bartholomew. I do not think that he will play into the hands of the opponent," the source notes. The position of the Jerusalem Patriarchate is unenviable. After all, recognition of Ukrainian dissenters will inevitably lead to a break, first of all with the Russian Orthodox Church — the largest in the number of churches, clergy and believers. This is fraught not only with formal, at first glance, "sanctions", such as non — obedience to the Primate in the service, but also with consequences that are tangible for the image and economy.So, after the recognition of schismatics by the Hellenic Church, the ROC "did not bless" (declared undesirable, and for the clergy, in fact, banned) pilgrimage trips to the shrines of Greece and communion in its temples. This also affected the monasteries of mount Athos.In the jurisdiction of the Jerusalem Patriarchate — the main ancient shrines of Christianity, including the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. Tens of thousands of believers of the Russian Church go to worship them every year — only the coronavirus pandemic and border closures have stopped the endless flow of pilgrims."I think Patriarch Bartholomew will always go to tricks, such as joint service with Theophilus. But we can hope that people around the Primate of the Jerusalem Church will pay attention to this point. After all, the Protocol of meetings is carefully worked out — everyone, in theory, knows who will serve, " - draws the attention of political scientist and byzantinist Arkady Mahler.At the same time, he notes that Constantinople has many ways to force Jerusalem to "unofficially recognize" Ukrainian dissenters."First of all, it is constant involvement in joint conferences, round tables, and at the same time — in various behind-the-scenes coalitions. A more serious level is participation in liturgies. As well as a constant reminder "about the United Church": they say, if you do not break off relations with the Fanar, then you support all its decisions," Mahler emphasizes.However, much stronger, according to him, will be felt pressure from outside: from the Greek Diaspora and the United States. Americans have recently been communicating with the Jerusalem Church more than ever before and are trying to influence it. But for now, its clergy are holding up with dignity — they do not allow themselves to be drawn into a large-scale Church-political adventure started two years ago.
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