Jerusalem Patriarchate urges GOC not to violate its jurisdiction

25 January 17:35
Patriarch Theophilos III of Jerusalem and Archbishop Ieronymos II of Athens and All Greece. Photo: Patriarch Theophilos III of Jerusalem and Archbishop Ieronymos II of Athens and All Greece. Photo:

Metropolitan Nicholas (Hadjinikolaou), without any knowledge of the Jerusalem Patriarchate, led the Liturgy on its canonical territory and didn’t mention the Patriarch.

Patriarch Theophilos III of Jerusalem sent a letter to the Primate of the Greek Orthodox Church, Archbishop Ieronymos II, in which he complained about the conduct of Metropolitan Nicholas (Hadjinikolaou) of the GOC in the Monastery of Saint Catherine of Sinai, which is on the canonical territory of the Jerusalem Patriarchate.

"At the Divine Liturgy of the feast of Saint Catherine this year, His Eminence the Metropolitan Nikolaos of Mesogaia and Lavreotiki, presided, without any knowledge on Our part, and he commemorated in the Divine Liturgy, apparently due to a misunderstanding, the Holy Synod of the Church of Greece and the Archbishop of Sinai, without any mention of the Patriarch of Jerusalem, in contrast to the liturgical and canonical order that existed in the Venerable Patriarchates," the letter said.

The Patriarch stressed that the Sinai Monastery has an autonomous status, but "the Autonomy of the Monastery or its “Autocephalous”, as the Sinai Fathers claim, annuls the order of the Diptychs and on what canonical basis is this annulment based".

Theophilos III noted that "a problem has been created recently, as it were, from the non-notification of the Patriarchate of Jerusalem by the Sinaitic Fathers, for the invitation of Hierarchs from other Ecclesiastical jurisdictions, for the purpose of the celebration of the Divine Eucharist in the Holy Monastery, in particular on the feast of Saint Catherine".

"Every year We send a delegation for this feast, without knowing which High Priests of other Churches we will meet there, thus making Our representatives witness canonical disorder," the Patriarch stressed.

He requested the Primate of the Greek Church "to recommend to the High Priests of the Church of Greece, any time they wish to celebrate the Divine Liturgy in the Holy Monastery of the God-trodden Mount Sinai, to inform the Patriarchate of Jerusalem".

As reported, in October 2019, the Greek Orthodox Church agreed that the Patriarchate of Constantinople has the right to grant autocephaly and recognised the OCU.

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