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Analysis: The Two Patriarchal “Slaps”

The postponement of the ordination of Bishop Alexandros Belya of the Slavic Orthodox Vicariate, as first reported by The National Herald on both of its websites, the English, www.thenationalherald.com, and the Greek edition, www.ekirikas.com, at noon on July 15, was the second slap that Elpidophoros received on his Archepiscopal cheeks.

The first was a month ago on June 15, 2022, when the Synodal Committee on the Eparchies of the Throne Abroad, at the suggestion, of course, of Patriarch Bartholomew himself, because as everyone knows without him — the Patriarch, I mean — committees and synods, secretaries and others of the Phanar “can’t do anything.”

Regarding the Charter, the Committee on the Eparchies of the Throne Abroad instructed Elpidophoros to convene the Eparchial Synod and unanimously request the lifting of the suspension of the Charter, as was done. Of course, the question in this case was why the Eparchial Synod was involved, as it did not request the repeal of the Charter; Elpidophoros alone did so, without even informing either the Synod or the Archdiocesan Council.

In this case Elpidophoros acted without “the knowledge and the opinion of the majority”, (δίχα της γνώμης των πλειόνων) which constitutes “factionalism” (τυρεία και φατρία) according to proper ecclesiastical definition. Anyway, the Eparchial Synod did well and asked for the suspension of the Charter to be lifted in order that the Patriarchal prestige be salvaged as much as possible.

Elpidophoros deserves his fate. Unfortunately, within three years he destroyed the “messianic hope” that had been created around him by constantly proving the magnitude of his lack of cachet, so that now the majority of the hierarchs of the Phanar, and even people who had supported him in every way, insisting that he had to succeed in order for the Church and the Omogeneia of America to succeed, now admit that “he is not fit for America,” and the sooner Bartholomew hardens his heart and realizes it, the better for the Archdiocese and the Patriarchate.

I remind you that the suspension of the Charter was done on Thursday, October 8, 2020 at the demand of Elpidophoros from the Patriarch and the Synod around him, who unfortunately did Elpidophoros this favor too, along with the ostracism of Metropolitan Evangelos of New Jersey despite Evangelos’ many and varied contributions to the Phanar, but also of Elpidophoros himself.

And as expected, the Patriarch found Elpidophoros’ unfortunate decisions and actions in front of him, along with God knows how many other things. Above all, all the untimely and inappropriate events of the Clergy-Laity Congress, which Elpidophoros turned into a Greek night club or else at best a “dog kennel,” while he degraded, as I already wrote, even the Patriarchal offikia which he handed out even to “insulters” of the Patriarchate and “autocephalist” preachers. Officials of the Archdiocese said jokingly that he failed to give an “award” to Hermes. Hermes is the dog that Elpidophoros brought from Halki with the members of his “entourage,” (συνοδεία) and which often roams around the Archdiocesan offices.

Let’s leave aside the recently distributed news from Athens with that “overproduction” of the baptism of the children of the Greek-American same-sex couple. For God’s sake, no one said not to baptize children who are completely innocent and, of course, are separate persons in the theological and anthropological ontological sense of the person, and, of course, have the right to enter through baptism into the Kingdom of God, the Church. The issues are what Elpidophoros conveyed in this baptism, which from a great and sacred mystery was transformed into a Hollywood blockbuster, with the hierarchical and archepiscopal honor and prestige validating and rewarding the marriage of the same-sex couple and the use of a surrogate mother, traveling specifically for this from America to Greece, essentially “obtaining” the canonical permission to do the sacrament in a misleading manner from the local shepherd, Metropolitan Antonios of Glyfada.

The most correct and wisest thing would be for the baptism of these two innocent children, whom Elpidophoros and their “parents” put in the eye of a public relations cyclone, to be done by a priest decently, without fanfare, elaborate quarrels, and scandalizing people. The fact that Tsipras’ faction came out — Tsipras was neither crowned nor had his children baptized — playing the thankless role of Elpidophoros’ supporter is a manifestation of many things. I daresay that with this “we understand now, we don’t need more” would suffice as a poetic word.

In the meantime, the ridicule of persons and institutions continues with smallminded actions of the well-paid consultants and strategists in Athens and in the USA, setting up Elpidophoros in the Ionian Village to caress and converse even with horses, but also with a visit to the Greek-American ambassador of the U.S. in Athens, George Tsunis, in their attempt to improve his severely tarnished image, spreading detailed reports everywhere. Since I mentioned the “acquaintances of the hierarch” who make up the communications team of Archbishop Elpidophoros, let me also say that he must inform the majority Church (την πλήθουσα Εκκλησία) of America how much they are paid, where they are paid from, and what work they perform, including those who are “aging” in the Archdiocese.

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