So in trying to understand the many splits in the Church of Antioch throughout history, I do not quite understand the history of the Melkite Greek Catholic Church.
So, the way I understand it, in the 18th century the patriarch of Antioch established communion with the Roman Catholic Church. The Eastern Orthodox Church responded by deposing of the patriarch and establishing a new patriarchate in Antioch.
But here's the real question: where did the majority of the Antiochian community go? Did most enter into communion with Rome, did most stay Orthodox, or was it about an even split? Not factoring in all the Oriental Orthodox or the Assyrian Church of the East into all of this, I am just curious if the majority of the Arab Christians in Antioch wanted to be in communion with Rome, or just a small segment of the people.
This is really me trying to understand what has happened to the majority groups of the ancient patriarchates. Eastern Orthodoxy's broad claims to still represent all of the traditional patriarchates seems a bit far-fetched, so I'm trying to get the story straight. Alexandria is by majority Oriental Orthodox. Rome is by majority Roman Catholic. Constantinople is by majority Eastern Orthodox. Jerusalem apparently really has no majority group, but maybe I am wrong on this and someone can clarify. But what about Antioch? Is it just a big mess of splinted groups, or has the majority of Antioch's Christian population favored any particular communion?
In Antioch itself, the majority are Orthodox. Of those in the patriarchate, it is more evenly matched.
Jerusalem only has an EO patriarchate:the Latin (and I mean Latin, there is no "Eastern Catholic" one except that appended to the Melkite patriarch) was imposed by the Crusaders and revived under colonialism, the OO had a bishop the Syriac patriarch sent, and the Armenians have a bishop sent for the community there.
Another as to representing the ancient patriarchates: with the coming of Islam a lot of the Chalcedonians migrated to the Roman empire (Leo the Isaurian was born Qonon the Syrian). Antioch kept more Chalcedonians because it was often within the empire. The non-Chalcedonians, for obvious reasons, stayed put. Jerusalem always remained in the orbit of the Chalcedonians (leading to the present phyletist mess there), as did the Church of Sinai.
Btw, a lot of the start of the Melkites had to do with a choice of the distant pope at Rome (who didn't much involve himself at the local level at the time) and nearby (and at the Turkish capital) Greek EP (who did).