Metropolitan Emmanuel of France: Autocephaly likely to be provided to UOC in the coming weeks
An exclusive translation of Metropolinan Emmanuel’s view of recent events in world Orthodoxy was published on October 20 by the newspaper TA NEA, Cerkvarium.org reports.
Metropolitan Emmanuel expresses his regret that the Moscow Patriarchate is fiercely opposing the process of granting autocephaly to the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, tries to weaken by way of threats and attacks the communion ties that unite all Autocephalous Orthodox Churches between themselves.
Metropolitan responded to the call of the Russian Orthodox Church to convene the Pan-Orthodox Council to discuss the issue of Ukrainian autocephaly:
“The Moscow Church uses its influence in order to exert pressure on other Orthodox Churches, calling them to convene the Pan-Orthodox assembly. It should be noted, however, that the Russian Church refused to take part in the Holy and Great Council of the Orthodox Church in June 2016 in Crete. It was about one of the most important Orthodox events in modern history. I regret the manifestation of such opportunism on the part of the Moscow Patriarchate, which seeks to use All-Orthodox meetings to place their own accents. In addition, it should be understood that the provision of autocephaly does not constitute a matter for the agenda at the Pan-Orthodox Council, this issue is solely within the competence of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, as the Mother Church, which grants independence to the Orthodox Ukrainian ecclesiastical body. This is a lesson in history. The Ecumenical Patriarchate is the source of autocephaly of all the local Orthodox Churches, with the exception of the ancient Patriarchs founded in the first millennium, and with the exception of the Cyprus Church.”
Metropolitan Emmanuel stressed, “The Ukrainian Orthodox Church will be granted autocephaly in a very short time, probably in the coming weeks. The most important appeal to all the Orthodox in relation to this topic has no political or geopolitical implications, it is primarily spiritual.
Autocephaly should put an end to the division of the Orthodox in Ukraine and not lead to new splits. Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew has a complete understanding of this topic and makes communication a theological foundation to the benefit of everyone. This move is prophetic because it is about the moment of truth that affects the whole Orthodoxy. In the case of attempts to overturn its path, one must answer, guided by experience and gospel warnings.”