Every second Saturday of the month, 4 pm - Divine Liturgy in English of Sunday - Ukrainian Catholic Cathedral of the Holy Family, Duke Street, London W1K 5BQ. Followed by refreshments.
Next Liturgy: Saturday 9th June - 3pm Great Vespers, 4pm Divine Liturgy for Sunday

To purchase The Divine Liturgy: an Anthology for Worship (in English), order from the Sheptytsky Institute here, or the St Basil's Bookstore here.

To purchase the Divine Praises, the Divine Office of the Byzantine-Slav rite (in English), order from the Eparchy of Parma here.

The new catechism in English, Christ our Pascha, is available from the Eparchy of the Holy Family and the Society. Please email johnchrysostom@btinternet.com for details.

Friday, 23 May 2014

Orthodox patriarch does not represent us in meeting Pope, says Russian Church spokesman : Catholic Culture

The following report from Catholic Culture indicates the Patriarchate of Moscow making its point that the Patriarch of Constantinople is not an Orthodox "opposite number" to the Bishop of Rome, but only the patriarch who is next in honour to him as leader of his own patriarchate, not an overseer of all the Orthodox Churches taken together. So on one level Metropolitan Hilarion is saying nothing unremarkable. But the context for Moscow is that, whereas in 1964 the Russian Orthodox Church was in captivity to the atheist Soviet state nowadays it is completely free to speak for itself as the largest body by far of Orthodox Christians not only in the Russian Orthodox Church in the Russian Federation itself but also in the diaspora throughout the world. Thus the ROC feels it has a moral right to be deferred to as a "decisive factor" in determining Orthodox affairs globally. Hence its difficulty with the leadership of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in overseeing Orthodox in the diaspora and the reality that many of the autocephalous Churches maintain their own hierarchical provision for their own diaspora, even on the territories where there is an existing established hierarchy of the place (indeed various Orthodox churches have established hierarchies on the historical territory in Europe of the patriarch of Rome). This means unresolved disputes between Constantinople and Moscow on who has the right to establish or recognise autocephalous churches - notably in Estonia, Ukraine and north America. Furthermore, as far as the Catholic Church is concerned, Moscow is uneasy with the Ecumenical Patriarchate's leadership on the formal international dialogue, and Orthodox-Catholic in general. Hence its withdrawal from the dialogue at various points, its recent formal establishment of a position with regard to the historic primatial position of Rome before the great schism that is at variance with the direction of the dialogue's discussion (despite having been party to forming that direction during the developing discussion), and its resentment at the Pope meeting the Ecumenical Patriarch as peers - Peter and Andrew, both seeing themselves and each other as leaders of apostolic Churches. Moscow would like its patriarch to be seen by the Catholic Church, which it regards as exclusively Latin-Roman Catholic, as a peer too, as leader in the Third Rome at the head of the largest extant Orthodox Christian civilisation deriving from old imperial Christendom, and not as tributary to the vestige of what it plainly regards as a vestige of the defunct New Rome that was once Constantinople. This is why Metropolitan Hilarion exerts so much effort on a distinct Russian Orthodox relationship in its own right with Rome, why he insists on presenting it in terms of a balance between Catholic Latin West and Orthodox Byzantine East (to the exclusion of Byzantine Catholics NB), and why he has played down the significance for Orthodox of the Ecumenical Patriarch's commemorative meeting with the Pope and the relations between them in general. It is as though, he is saying perhaps, the reality and the context have changed and properly to commemorate the historic encounter between Pope Paul VI and Patriarch Athenagoras in the modern day, Moscow needs to be in a leading role too if the "dialogue of love" is to go anywhere in the future and have ecumenical bearing.

There is a centuries long history of the Russian Church seeking to assume leadership of all Orthodox - even efforts to transfer the Ecumenical Patriarchate from New Rome to Third Rome entirely. But other Orthodox Churches see the Ecumenical Patriarchate as far from vestigial or defunct, and see its role of primacy in honour as a moderating strength. They do not envisage a worldwide Orthodox communion of Churches in which the largest body always prevails through strength of scale and numbers. Besides, Metropolitan Hilarion is not accurate when he says that Patriarch Bartholomew is not representing wider Orthodoxy. Hosting the pilgrimage, after all, will be the Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem. MW

The chief foreign spokesman of the Russian Orthodox Church has expressed some misgivings that Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople will be meeting Pope Francis during the Pontiff’s visit to the Holy Land. Metropolitan Hilarion said that because Patriarch Bartholomew had not consulted with other Orthodox leaders before scheduling his meeting with the Pope, he would be acting on his own behalf, not as a representative of the world’s Orthodox faithful. Although the Patriarch of Constantinople is traditionally recognized as the “first among equals” in the Orthodox hierarchy, the Russian Orthodox argues that he exercises that primacy only when other Orthodox patriarchs explicitly authorize him to do so. In the absence of such a mandate, Metropolitan Hilarion said, Patriarch Bartholomew will be representing only his own particular church, the Patriarchate of Constantinople.

See online:

Orthodox patriarch does not represent us in meeting Pope, says Russian Church spokesman : News Headlines - Catholic Culture
Post a Comment