Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Tomos signing update

(Kyiv Post) - Ukrainian Church’s autocephaly tomos to be briefly returned to Istanbul to be signed by Constantinople Patriarchate’s Synod

All members of the Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople must sign the tomos of authocephaly of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine, Andriy Yurash, the director of the Ukrainian Culture Ministry’s department of religions and interethnic relations, said.

“The tomos will be displayed so that everyone who wishes may come and see this unique document until the evening (on Monday). (..) In the near future, it will return to Istanbul, to the Patriarchate of Constantinople, because at present it was signed only by the Ecumenical Patriarch [Bartholomew],” Yurash said during a Christmas liturgy at the St. Sophia’s Cathedral in Kyiv broadcast on Ukrainian television channels on Monday. If anyone has the Greek original or an English translation from the original, please send it over.

“All members of the Ecumenical Patriarchate’s Holiest Synod should sign it later. The Synod will convene just in two days to do that. Afterwards, the tomos will return to Ukraine for good and will be under special protection,” the Ukrainian official said.

As reported, the head of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine, Metropolitan Epiphanius (Epifaniy) of Kyiv and All Ukraine, received the tomos from Patriarch Bartholomew in Istanbul on January 6.

Patriarch Bartholomew signed the tomos on Saturday, January 5.

On Monday, Metropolitan Epiphanius and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko brought the scroll with the tomos to St. Sophia’s Cathedral in Kyiv for the Christmas liturgy.

Following the liturgy, the scroll was moved to St. Sophia’s Cathedral’s refectory church for public viewing.

On January 7, hundreds of people gathered in St. Sophia’s Square to watch the broadcast of the holiday service on a big screen and see the tomos scroll.


  1. Wait, so the EP's signature is not enough?

  2. Now comes the rubber stamp council of dependent bishops of the ecumenical throne. No big deal!

    1. Absolutely! The king's subjects in the classic fable of "The Emperor's New Clothes" are an apt example of how the overwhelming majority of the hierarchs of the Ecumenical Patriarchate behave! Clearly, ALL the other autocephalous Orthodox Churches are watching in shock & dismay as Patriarch Bartholomew struts about in the buff like he owns the Orthodox Church with the EP bishops cheering him on.

      This is a "self-critical" statement given that I'm a member of the EP. However, I completely disagree with my patriarch & the synod on essentially all their recent decisions.

      Whether my family & I remain in the Ecumenical Patriarchate will depend on how the rest of the Orthodox Church responds & what the ultimate outcome is. My loyalty is to Christ & His Church not to a patriarch or patriarchate that seems like he & it have lapsed into heresy.

      Time will tell. In the meantime I'll try to guard my heart as I suspect the temptations will be great & the cross will be difficult to bear.

  3. The new church has to get the Holy Chrism from Constantinople. Hence, it is really in a state of maximum autonomy. I read Archbishop Daniel in the original Ukrainian.

    1. Yes, and this condition of having to receive its Holy Chrism from Constantinople is written into all the relatively recent tomoi of autocephaly that the EP has issued.

      It's a novel & bizarre way of legislating dependency on the EP in the relationship, along with requiring that matters that can't be resolved internally be referred "up" to the EP so that the "First Without Equals" & his rubber-stamping synod can make an ultimate & binding decision.

      We should all be grateful to the EP for this new & improved Orthodoxy 2.0. Anything less would be disrespectful as Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople himself pointed out just a few days ago.

      Pray for that man as he will have to stand before Christ at the Last Judgment one day!

  4. Regarding chrism, Alexandria, Antioch and Jerusalem have received their chrism from Constantinople since Ottoman times. In the 10th-11th centuries, when Antioch came under Byzantine rule, they were also made to receive chrism from the captital, though there are extant letters from Patriarch Peter III fighting back, apparently successfully, against this.

    1. Exactly! "...since Ottoman times."

      Primacy (in the context of conciliarity) is a God-ordained reality seen with St. Peter among the Apostles that naturally carried over into the Orthodox episcopate at the local, regional & universal levels since the earliest times in the life of the Church.

      However, the EP's current version of illegitimate centralization of the Orthodox Church around Constantinople was forced upon us externally by the Turks mangling the legitimate primacy of the EP into the "Rum Millet-Bashi" (i.e., ethnarch = religious & political leader to the Roman/Greek Orthodox Christian Nation) with never-before-seen dependency on Constantinople.

      Despite these unOrthodox attempt to force this system on the Church the EP often did a remarkable job refusing to integrate it into its consciousness, but that only lasted so long before the it "took".

      When the Ottoman Empire fell in 1922 the EP in the person of Meletius Metaxakis began to make very "creative" reinterpretive arguments of the canons & history in order to rationalize / legitimize the continued use of this secular model that was forced on it rather than returning to authentic Orthodox ecclesiology like the Moscow Patriarchate did after it was able to throw off the abolition of the patriarchal system that Peter the Great forced upon it.

      Prior to this the wild "papal-type" claims & actions of the EP that we have all been forced to endure did not exist.

      Is time for the EP to either wake up & smell the coffee or sleepwalk out in the cold snowy night & freeze to death.

      We will see one or the other of these outcomes in the not too distant future. Time will tell...

    2. Mellitus Metaxakis! Now that's a fine example of an 'Orhodox' prelate. Still, were it not for the millet system would not Orthodxy have come under Western European influence as eventually happened in the liberated state of Greece?

    3. Hard telling not knowing. It would be pure speculation. Even it history unfolded the way you suggested the EP would still be forced to choose between returning to authentic Orthodox ecclesiology or walking further down the aberrant path into the desert of heresy just like they are right now. Thankfully, literally ALL rest to the Holy Orthodox Church hasn't been pulled into the demonic delusion that the EP has succomed to.

      Believe me when I say the last thing I want is to see is the Ecumenical Patriarchate cut itself off from the rest of the Church like Rome did a thousand years ago. I pray that the grace of the Holy Spirit via the prayers of Holy Hierarchs of Constantinople like John Chrysostom, Gregory the Theologian, Photios the Great & all the saints will move Patriarch Bartholomew's heart toward humility, repentance, unity & peace.

      This is now well beyond rational discourse. It's purely a spiritual dilemma. We should all pray intensly!

  5. If you compare the relationships between the new OCU and the Ukrainian Orthodox Church MP Metropolitan Onoufry is less dependent upon the MP then is Epifaniy is upon the EP. This is all nothing more than political posturing. Where is Christ in all of this mess? Christ is born! Glorify Him!

  6. Apparently it's now signed and all ready to send back to Kiev: