Head of Phanar Archdiocese in USA speaks on model of unification with Rome

Archbishop Elpidophoros advocated an ecumenical dialogue with the RCC. Photo: Panorthodox SYNOD

Archbishop Elpidophoros urged to think that "our Churches will be united" and spoke about the role of the Pope in the future ecumenical Church.

Archbishop Elpidophoros (Lambriniadis), head of the American Archdiocese of the Patriarchate of Constantinople, gave a lecture on "The Future of Orthodox-Catholic Relations in the U.S.A.", according to Panorthodox SYNOD.

Hierarch of Phanar described his model of ecumenical dialogue between Constantinople and Rome, which, in particular, assumes that denominations will be able to hold joint services, celebrate Easter together, and the Orthodox will be allowed to marry non-Orthodox. In his opinion, the dialogue with the Roman Catholic Church "goes beyond historical and theological antagonisms."

“Today more than ever, we need to think not only of our differences, but about how we can anticipate our Churches being united through a rediscovered experience of communion based on: mutual recognition, a common confession of faith, the acceptance of diversity, liturgical sharing, synodality and conciliarity, mission and evangelization, subsidiarity, renewal and reforms, and finally the role of the Papacy,” said Archbishop Elpidophoros.

Concerning the papacy, he clarified, " The way we define Church governance would have some direct impact on our ability to live and exist as one Church." The hierarch also cited the views of Patriarch Bartholomew, who "uses a beautiful expression, speaking of 'a primacy of love, honor and service'."

As an example of such interaction, Archbishop Elpidophoros cited the support of the Roman Catholic pastor of the Roman Catholic Church in the United States, Timothy Michael Dolan, on the issue of Hagia Sophia, emphasizing that "the ecumenical solidarity over the past few months has been incredible." At the same time, the representative of Phanar believes that "the ecumenical movement as a whole is in crisis."

Earlier, the UOJ wrote that the Cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church, Christoph Schönborn, "dreams" that Hagia Sophia will become a "meeting place of religions".

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