Autocephaly? No, Flexibility? Yes

FILE - Archbishop Demetrios with Patriarch Bartholomew in a previous meeting at the Theological School of Halki. (Photo by GOA/Dimitrios Panagos)

It is ironic that the debate on the creation of an autocephalous Church in America was inadvertently caused by the Patriarchate itself.

And it was caused by its apparent inability to grasp the seriousness of the issue created by numerous scandals and competence over the years culminating with the Archdiocese’s virtual bankruptcy and the Patriarchate ’s inaction in the face of it.

And so today, for the first time in its history, our Church in America is under the microscope of two …

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  1. First, wouldn’t it be nice to know if the Archbishop knew of Mr. Veliotis’ remarks before the fact. Second the Patriarch intervened in Ukraine because he believes he has the right to do so. And he is backed in that regard by many in the US and in the Phanar. Of course, others see his meddling in Ukraine as just another example of his wanting to be the pope of the East. In the fall of 2015 the heads of the various Churches were at the Phanar for a pre-conciliar meeting before Crete. An official photo was taken with the Patriarch two steps up from the other primates, in his manteion with the others lined up behind and to his side. The looks on the faces of the others primates said it all. That picture was indeed worth a thousand words. It is informative that many of those present at that meeting did not attend the conference on Crete and Patriarch Bartholomew did not go to Moscow recently when the other primates did. As for US autocephaly, don’t look for it to happen any time soon. Too many here are too invested in the power granted to them by the EP and it won’t get any better when Metropolitan Elpidoforos Lambrianidis succeeds Patriarch Bartholomew. Besides, with autocephaly for the GOA will come battles between cradle Orthodox (read Greek/Greek American) and all those who have married into the church for at least a generation, the so called “mixed” marriages in the GOA accounting for 75% of the marriage, not to mention all those coverts. And does anyone really think any of the hierarch here are able to/should become archbishop after Archbishop Demetrios, much less be presiding hierarch of an autocephalous church?

    1. Share whatever you are smoking with the rest of us!! That lazy, arrogant, corrupt and rude disaster of a person cannot nanage his own appetite or temper much less his own diocese. His election as Archbishop would be the death knell of the GOA.

  2. An important thing overlooked in this serious discussion is the existence of other Orthodox bodies in this blessed land, why do we ignore them? Efforts have been (are being) made for a unified front since the days of Iakovos, with many important groups of our Greek Orthodox Church involved. Why do we look at things from the Greek perspective only, trying to preserve the “Greekness” of ourselves? Wouldn’t it be more realistic to present a common front, a model, perhaps, for our dysfunctioning Orthodox world?

  3. The GOA is 160,000, the OCA is 73,000, AOCA is 20,000. The others need to come under us. Then the ghetto parishes like Astoria can be Metochion parishes of Athens and leave the rest of us alone. The 28th canon of the 4th ecumenical council firmly puts all diaspora under the Oecumenical Patriarchate.

    1. Our family is Greek by ethnicity and we attend an OCA Church because we want a Church centered on Christ, not on the Glory of Greece. The GOA is falling apart and many of us a running away from it, why should more spirit filled churches come be part of our mess.

      Watching Evangelos’ horrific arrogance the last time he visited us was the nail in the coffin. That was before all the recent corruption and misappropriation at the GOA became public.

      You want a Greek Social Club? Join the GOA. You want something Christ-centered, go almost anywhere else. GOA needs a top to bottom house cleaning or it will disappear within a generation.

  4. Flushing’s Dr Zeuss set up his own retreats or moved the festival to exactly the same time as St Vladimir’s

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