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Extending the Hand of Church Communication: OCU Primate received a letter from the Greek Church

29.10.2019, 15:43
Extending the Hand of Church Communication: OCU Primate received a letter from the Greek Church - фото 1

On October 28, a letter from the Holy Synod of the Greek Orthodox Church, signed by the Archbishop of Athens and all Hellas, Jerome II, was sent to the OCU Primate Epifaniy.

Greek Church officials say there are no disconnections between them and the OCU. They also thank the Savior for reviving the fellowship that once existed between the Churches.

We provide the full text of the letter, published on the official site of the OCU:

“Blessed Metropolitan of Kyiv and all Ukraine, Your Beatitude in the Lord Epifaniy. We greet you with great pleasure, our most beloved and desirable brother Christ and companion of our Humility. It was our great pleasure to receive the Patriarchal Letter No. 1119 dated December 24, 2018, which told us of the initiative and actions of the Church of the Holy See and of the First Church of Constantinople, which having considered the question concerning You and the Hierarchs around You, the holy clergy and the Lord's faithful, mended the divided congregation of our Archpastor, Lord and Savior. We have also learned about the Synodal consideration of the proclamation of autocephaly and self-government by the Holy and Sacred Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchal Church of Ukraine, honored with the same rights and obligations as other Autocephalous Church.

Thereafter, we gladly received Your Peaceful Letters dated December 17 of the previous year, which informed us of Your canonical election as the Metropolitan of Kyiv and all Ukraine. We sent Your Beatitude our personal sincere congratulations, as well as those from the Holy Hierarchy and the pious clergy, the God-loving people of the Holy Greek Church along with the wish to enlighten and support the Divine Trinity in fulfilling Your new responsibilities as Head of the Ukrainian Church.

The Sacred Local Churches, our Blessed Brethren, that participate in the Holy Eucharist of the common Chalice of life through unity in following the dogmas inspired by God, the Symbol of Faith and Church canons, designated by the Holy Universe and Grand Councils, are members of the One and Only Church. Therefore, we are gladdened to hear the good news that our common aspirations and actions have been successful and the barrier that has stood in the between us, orthodox brothers, the barrier that has divided us, causing great grief, scandals, and harm to the Church and to the common testimony of Orthodoxy in the modern world,  the barrier that has stood until recently has been broken; and we glorify Him who has restored the communion that once existed between us, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, we honor Him and offer sincere prayers from our Holy Apostolic Greek Church. We send Your Beatitude a kiss of brotherly love and extend the hand of Church Communication.

In this regard, we wish our Lord, "who has made the two groups one and has destroyed the barrier" (Ephesians 2:14), to always "give you the same attitude of mind toward each other" (Romans, 15: 5) and grant Your service as the Head of the Church many fruitful years, for the sake of the Holy Church of Ukraine. We also wish Your Beatitude to free the Church of Ukraine completely from the anxiety which has stirred it, destroying its unity, and to restore its peace, serenity and steadfastness to the glory of God and of the entire Orthodoxy.

Your loving brother in Christ,

Athenian Hieronymus II, Head”