Exarch of Belarus: Serving with sectarians, Bartholomew became one of them
Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople entered into prayerful communion with mummers who have no grace of priesthood.
Entering in the unity of prayerful communion with schismatics, we also become schismatics, depriving ourselves of the grace of the Holy Spirit and dooming our souls to destruction. Patriarchal Exarch of All Belarus, Metropolitan Pavel of Minsk and Zaslavl told about this in the next production of the weekly program “Conversations with His Eminence Pavel”.
Answering the question of the Orthodox believer from Antalya whether believers really cannot attend the temples of the Constantinople Patriarchate and what they should do in such a situation, His Eminence Pavel explained why “today we cannot go to the temples where representatives, clergy or bishops of Constantinople Patriarchate serve".
“There is a canonical Church, which possesses the fullness of Orthodox dogma and the grace of the Holy Spirit, and there are such organizations which despite calling themselves as churchly, have fallen into schism, i.e. retreated from Orthodox dogma, from Orthodox plenitude – these are schismatics,” said the Exarch of Belarus. “Falling outside of the canonical Orthodox Church, they become dissenters and deprive themselves of the grace of the Holy Spirit. This is a very clear position in our Church. Therefore, we have no right and should not engage in canonical or, rather, Eucharistic communion with such people who backslide into a split because by entering into this communion with them, even prayerful, we become sectarians as well, depriving ourselves of the grace of the Holy Spirit, which means we doom ourselves to the destruction of our soul."
He compared the split with a precipice into which no sane person would leap voluntarily.
“A split is an abyss, jumping into which both our body and soul will perish. And the Church warns us: do not enter into communion with schismatics, they are deprived of the grace of the Holy Spirit, they themselves have deprived themselves of the grace of the Holy Spirit. Therefore, prayer communion with them is deathly for the body and the soul.”
His Eminence stressed: Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople entered into the Eucharistic communion with breakaway groups, which is why he became a schismatic himself.
“He serves with those who do not even have priestly grace, forgive me for a rude word – these are mummers who serve with him. How can he be an Orthodox hierarch having committed this? Let alone patriarch? He entered into prayer communion, in concelebration with men being disguised, without any hierarchical or priestly succession – they have no grace of priesthood, they just dressed up and serve. Today, even the former Metropolitan Filaret Denisenko says, "True, this Epiphany is graceless." Even Denisenko says that Epiphany is just a male and Bartholomew serves with him,” said Metropolitan Pavel.
The Primate of the Belarusian Orthodox Church called on Orthodox believers to have stamina and not to succumb to provocations.
“True, someone somewhere might be experiencing difficulties at the moment, but this is a temporary phenomenon, believe me. Today the Church takes care of those faithful establishing new parishes; we have got so far several parishes in Turkey where our Orthodox canonical priests hold services. Be patient a little while longer, but in no case backslide into the split, do not ruin your soul,” Vladyka Pavel called.
As the UOJ reported, earlier the Patriarchal Exarch of All Belarus, Metropolitan of Minsk and Zaslavl, appealed to the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew to terminate the process of granting autocephaly to the Ukrainian Church, “to rethink the decisions taken and do everything possible to disavow or withdraw, stop this process, which today is taking on clear forms of a church schism in the entire world Orthodoxy.”