I've never understood what the OCA's Holy Synod's problem was with Metropolitan Jonah; there are plenty of Synods across the world and through history that were led by a primate who isn't prone to collaborate with his fellow hierarchs. How much collaborating does any one think Patriarch Bartholomew does with the Holy and Sacred Synod of Constantinople, unlike his predecessor who exhibited a humble and submissive persona? Not too much is my guess. Was His Eminence forced to resign because he is a political conservative and all the members of the Synod are liberals? Hard to believe, if that is the case. Yet, how could each member of the Synod be so opposed to his primatial leadership, that they would unanimously vote to force his resignation?
No one has even alleged that that His Eminence violated canons in his primatial leadership, or that he lacks spirituality. Thus, I would beg all of you with influence in the OCA, and all common members of the OCA, to lobby in support of fair treatment of His Eminence in retirement. Suggest a life long salary equivalent to the pension he would have earned if he served in the primatial see for a long term; no less than $70,000.00, but no more than $100,000.00 annually, plus the OCA should provide him with health care plan permanently--requiring him to participate somewhat in payment of its premiums, and a small housing subsidy, possibly. Yes, this would be an administrative burden, but he never sought the primacy and he isn't guilty of canonical infractions, or abuse of his office (unlike his two predecessors) during his tenure. Grant him these benefits with a well worded contract, appropriately executed, approved by the OCA's legal counsel, the Holy Synod of Bishops, and the Metropolitan Council, so that future church leadership cannot dispose of the contract, if they feel it is a waste of the OCA's resources. It is not uncommon for a church to provide for a retired hierarch with life long benefits, in the GOAA we had a few line items in our National Ministries budget related to Archbishop Iakovos' Office, former Archbishop of America, until His Eminence's passing from this life. Of course, the contract should require him to maintain a priestly behavior, to not speak or act in opposition to OCA policies and initiatives. Metropolitan Jonah probably should not be elected to another diocesan see because a disgruntled bishop, one who perceives he was forced to resign without cause, is prone to not being a team player, and if he didn't have the proficiency to effectively serve the primatial see, he probably doesn't have the appropriate skills to serve and administer a diocese effectively. Perhaps he could be encouraged to write and publish, to do things that benefit the church, using he talents that he does possess, talents that made him a successful Abbot of a monastery. Hopefully he can afford to purchase a small retirement home that would be near a monastery, so that he could join in the life of a monastery, as he is a monastic. I would also suggest he be permitted a place of honor at church-wide banquets, as the retired primate of the OCA, and that he be invited to celebrate the Divine Services of the church at national and diocesan related activities.
May the OCA have the maturity to permanently treat their former primate with the respect he deserves; and may His Eminence find peace of mind in his retirement. "Eis polla eti, Despota!"