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Author Topic: Question about administrative affairs  (Read 1092 times) Average Rating: 0
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maxval
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« on: January 26, 2010, 09:23:01 AM »

Hi, all!

I have an administrative question. I couldn't find an answer here browsing the different topics. If it was discuted earlier, then I appologize, in this case please show me the topic.

In case of future union between EO and OO, what will happen with the two "double" churches, I mean now we have two Popes of Alexandria, one for EO and one for OO, and also we have two Patriarchs of Antioch too. What is expected to happen in this case? Will remain this situation, or the "double" churches will merge one into other, I mean for example we will have one Pope of Alexandria, and under his authority there will be both actual EO and actual OO? What is the "solution"?

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« Reply #1 on: January 26, 2010, 09:33:45 AM »

On the previous occasion when it seemed likely that the Greek Alexandrian Church would unite with the Coptic Orthodox Church I believe the Greek Pope would have become a Metropolitan within the united Orthodox Church of Alexandria. I imagine that he would have been responsible for the smaller Greek rite community that would have then been within the united Alexandrian Church.

Of course the assassination of the Pope by the Ottoman authorities put paid to the union because the last thing they wanted was a united Church.

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« Reply #2 on: January 26, 2010, 11:42:44 AM »

I remember having a convesation with the Metropolitan of Lebanon decades ago, who said that this is one of the things holding up the reunion "because no one wants to die."  The Arab Orthododox in Greater Syria (there isn't even a proper OO Patriarchate of Jerusalem) outnumber the Syriac Orthodox, and the Copts overwhelmingly outnumber the EO (Arab and Greek) in Egypt herself.  The problem is that Alexandria not only represents Egypt, but All of Africa, where the numbers change.

One hears talk in Syria of when one of our Patriarchs of Antioch (both in Damascus,  falls asleep, EO or OO, the Holy Synod will not elect a successor, and the unification will begin.  That would be possible if (and I am not wishing this by any means) HH Ignatios Zakka I Severus passed first, given the difference between the set up of OO Churches versus the set up among the EO Churches.  The others in the EO Communion would be the hold up here.

In Alexandria, there is a different story.  Both Churches get along fine as of late.  But the EO do not have a native hierarchy, which casuses a different dynamic: the Church is run with imported hierarchs (who have no vested interest in the OO, coming from relatively OO free Greece) on a continental (i.e. African) rather than country (i.e. Egypt) scale.  Alexandria's OO daughers in Ethiopia and Eritrea are autcephalous, more or less, the EO there not at all. Pope Shenoudah has seen several EO Popes (all foreignors) come and go.  There was no talk as far as I know about not electing successors, and given the foreign hierarchy/continental view, I'm not suprised.  On the other hand, the Copts have jursidcitions world wide (but still Egyptocetric). So who would end up Patriarch of Alexandria remains a question.


The EO Patriarch would remain by default, but its ethnic problems would rise.

The problems in the "diaspora" would come home, as several EO territories have OO minorities.  The Armenian Patriarch of Constantinople would be repositions, the OO hierarchies would be ammalgamated in Jerusalem, the Armenian bishops of Syria would become members of the Synod of Antioch (I'm not sure of their present status).
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« Reply #3 on: January 27, 2010, 10:25:26 AM »

Thanks, these were really very valuable answers.
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« Reply #4 on: January 27, 2010, 10:32:59 AM »

The EO Patriarch would remain by default, but its ethnic problems would rise.
I meant to say "the EO Patriarch" of Jerusalem.
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« Reply #5 on: January 27, 2010, 10:59:36 AM »

Quote
...the Armenian bishops of Syria would become members of the Synod of Antioch (I'm not sure of their present status).

They are part of the Catholicosate of Cilicia. The two Armenian Catholicosates are independent of one another, they have parallel jurisdictions in the USA and Canada.

So if they became members of the Synod of Antioch, the Catholicosate of Cilicia would have to be abolished?
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« Reply #6 on: January 27, 2010, 11:12:10 AM »

Not so much abolished, but to regularise church structures it would seem that in a canonically ideal world the Catholicate would become dependent on the Patriarchate of Antioch while preserving its own cultural ethos. In a unified Patriarchate of North America or the US then all of the various cultural communities would become part of one hierarchy while preserving their cultural ethos and connections with their Mother Lands.

Having multiple jurisdictions is a modern thing. It would be interesting to study how different cultural groups preserved their identity while also being part of a single jurisdiction in the past. I imagine that they had their own episcopate but under the local Metropolitan or Patriarch??

This is all hypothetical so don't anyone say I am supporting the abolition of anything. :-)

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« Reply #7 on: January 27, 2010, 11:24:55 AM »

Having multiple jurisdictions is a modern thing. It would be interesting to study how different cultural groups preserved their identity while also being part of a single jurisdiction in the past. I imagine that they had their own episcopate but under the local Metropolitan or Patriarch??

If they represented the primary tradition of a particular city, the Bishop of the city would certainly belong to that particular rite or tradition, even if the Patriarch adhered to a different rite. But if they were a minority in that city, for them to have their own bishop along side another would be a violation of the canons.
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« Reply #8 on: January 27, 2010, 11:37:53 AM »

It depends. There are plenty of titular bishops in the EO tradition. The Greek bishops in the UK are all named for non-existent and historic sees in Greece and Asia-Minor. Or in a major city such bishops for significant cultural groups could be chor-episcopoi, assistant bishops.

In the recent case of the Roman Catholic church inviting Anglican groups to be reunited with the Roman Church they have proposed that the ex-Anglican bishops would have the honorific rank of bishop and sit on the Bishops Council, but would be arch-priests - because they are married. Some such solution would be possible I am sure.

What would matter would be the preservation of both a solid pastoral care for such communities while also maintaining a genuine unity in the wider community of the area.

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« Reply #9 on: January 27, 2010, 12:42:49 PM »

Quote
...the Armenian bishops of Syria would become members of the Synod of Antioch (I'm not sure of their present status).

They are part of the Catholicosate of Cilicia. The two Armenian Catholicosates are independent of one another, they have parallel jurisdictions in the USA and Canada.

So if they became members of the Synod of Antioch, the Catholicosate of Cilicia would have to be abolished?
I am not sure of the OO Patriarch of Antioch's jursidiction (the EO has jurisdiction over Cilicia).  I do know that he has flocks in the Turkish Republic, as far as Constantinople.
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« Reply #10 on: January 27, 2010, 08:10:53 PM »

It depends. There are plenty of titular bishops in the EO tradition. The Greek bishops in the UK are all named for non-existent and historic sees in Greece and Asia-Minor.

But isn't that the same as the Patriarchs of Antioch now residing in Damascus, or the OO Pope of Alexandria now residing in Cairo? The Greek bishops (and Russian - e.g. Sourozh) are not named after non-existant sees, but rather their sees have moved but kept the name of their ancient location.

Quote
Or in a major city such bishops for significant cultural groups could be chor-episcopoi, assistant bishops.

Having an assistant bishop catering for a particular rite within a diocese would be a possibility, provided he was under the jurisdiction of the primary bishop of that diocese and not the head of an overlapping diocese.
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« Reply #11 on: January 28, 2010, 06:36:16 PM »

I think the most reasonable thing to do would be to wait until one of the two Patriarchs dies, recognize the remaining Patriarch as the one Patriarch for the rest of his life, and then once he dies allow the two parties to elect the new Patriarch together. Perhaps who would best be able to serve both parties could be taken into account.
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« Reply #12 on: January 28, 2010, 08:28:25 PM »


In the recent case of the Roman Catholic church inviting Anglican groups to be reunited with the Roman Church they have proposed that the ex-Anglican bishops would have the honorific rank of bishop and sit on the Bishops Council, but would be arch-priests - because they are married. Some such solution would be possible I am sure.


That is if the Vatican chooses to ordain these particular men to the priesthood. Its a case by case basis.
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« Reply #13 on: January 30, 2010, 06:26:32 PM »

Bearing in mind the reference to and beginning of a discussion of the union effected in Alexandria between the Chalcedonians and Theodosians during the time of the Greek Patriarch Cyrus, it would be interesting to study that incident to determine if we know anything about how administrative matters were discussed then.

Father Peter
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