Ecumenical Patriarch’s tough response to Patriarch of Jerusalem
Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew brings Patriarch Theophilos of Jerusalem face to face with his historical responsibilities by sending an austere letter to the Patriarch of Jerusalem, just days after meeting with the delegation of the Patriarchate of Jerusalem at the Phanar, Orthodox Times report.
“We cannot understand how you overlook or even ignore the magnitude of the negative effects of this initiative,” Patriarch Bartholomew wrote to Patriarch Theophilos while stressing that this “familial gathering” initiative only aims at “subverting the established norms and alienating the Orthodox Church from its ecclesiastical foundations.”
The Ecumenical Patriarch made clear to the Patriarch of Jerusalem that the real aims of his initiative were obvious.
He also spoke of an “unutterable context of such an effort,” which he described as “problematic,” without having examined the costs and benefits of this initiative for the Church.
As the Ecumenical Patriarch said, “If your true concern was generally about ‘the challenges that the Orthodox society faces in critical times,’ after what was decided unanimously by the recent Holy and Great Council of the Orthodox Church, then you should first address us for the extra issues that were not included in it, and we strongly believe that there would be an agreement.”
“The aim, if we are to be true to ourselves and consistent with God, is to tenaciously cling to the refusal of a local Church to follow the centuries-old accepted principles in the Orthodox Church while having the Russian Federation by its side,” said Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew to Patriarch Theophilos while reminding him that “numerical strength has never been the quintessence of Orthodox morality…”
Each paragraph of the letter sent by the Ecumenical Patriarch is a slap in the face for the Patriarch of Jerusalem, in which it is reminded that his actions are not only harmful to the Church of Constantinople but also to the Patriarchate of Jerusalem itself as well as to the entire Orthodox Church.