Phanar: It's strange that some Churches cast doubt on our privileges
Patriarch Bartholomew believes that the very existence of autocephalous Churches is based on the Phanar's privilege to grant autocephaly.
The head of the Church of Constantinople, Patriarch Bartholomew, believes that other Local Churches should not question the “privileges” of Phanar. He announced this in a letter addressed to Archbishop Chrysostomos of Cyprus, published on the website of the Cyprus Church on November 26, 2020.
According to the head of Phanar, all Orthodox Churches that did not receive autocephaly at the Ecumenical Councils (following the example of the ancient Patriarchates and the Cypriot Church) "were declared autocephalous by the Ecumenical Patriarchate, voluntarily acting as the only competent body for this purpose."
Patriarch Bartholomew claims that "history bears witness to this unambiguously," and he is surprised that "today some churches cast doubt on this privilege, on which their very existence as self-governing churches is based."
Also, the head of Phanar supported the criticism of Archbishop Chrysostomos of this position, since it "requires immediate healing before it causes anti-canonical distortions in the most holy Orthodox Church." According to Patriarch Bartholomew, “The Ecumenical Patriarchate acted in relation to the Church of Ukraine in exactly the same way as it did when proclaiming all new autocephalous Churches, voluntarily and selflessly, on the basis of the canonical tradition existing for centuries. It is eager to continue to do so and in the future to serve our most holy Church from the position that is consistent with the long tradition."
Earlier, the UOJ wrote that according to the head of the Phanar, the recognition of the OCU is a contribution to the "unity of Orthodoxy".