Pat. Theodore: Our recognition of OCU doesn’t lead to schism in the Church
Patriarch Theodore II of Alexandria believes that after his recognition of the OCU, Patriarch Kirill should continue commemorating him at the Liturgy.
Patriarch Theodore II of Alexandria said that the recognition of the OCU will lead to a solution to the ongoing Ukrainian crisis, not to a schism in the Church, reports the Greek edition “Romfea”.
Pat. Theodore noted that in recognizing the OCU, “we made a difficult decision, very difficult.”
Surprisingly, the Alexandrian Patriarch also expressed the conviction the Pat. Kirill will not cease commemorating him, because “as the wise Archbishop of Cyprus says, that (the break of Eucharistic communion – Ed.) is not a measure” that can solve the problem.
Pat. Theodore also emphasized, as he did in the press release announcing his decision to commemorate Epiphany, that the Church has a “conciliar character” and that “the decision to recognize the OCU came after long prayers and reflections, and was discussed with all the bishops of the Patriarchate of Alexandria”.
After “the Patriarch of Alexandria recognized the OCU, that is, the tomos, which our Ecumenical Patriarch gave, the solution to this problem will begin—a problem that troubles our Church,” Pat. Theodore commented.
Responding to a journalists’ remark that his position could lead to a split, not to healing, Pat. Theodore said: “No, there will be no schism! I believe that after my intervention, other Churches will follow our Ecumenical Patriarchate. In the end, we will be united, fearing God and solving the problem in love.”
Pat. Theodore is now confident that “a Church that wants autocephaly should receive it, and everyone else will see that it is no different from them”.
Asked what he thinks about the request not to commemorate Epiphany while serving in Limassol, Pat. Theodore declined to answer, saying he had to discuss the issue with Abp. Chrysostomos first.
Earlier, the UOJ wrote that the Patriarchate of Alexandria officially recognized the OCU.