This is not franchise: Exarch for Africa about depriving ROC of autocephaly

Exarch of the Russian Orthodox Church for Africa, Metropolitan Leonid of Klin. Photo: ria.ru

According to Metropolitan Leonid, the Russian Orthodox Church carries out its ministry to God and people without violating the canons.

Metropolitan Leonid of Klin, Exarch of the Russian Orthodox Church for Africa, emphasized that it is impossible to take away autocephaly from the Russian Church. This was reported by the Interfax agency.

“The autocephaly of the Local Church is not a franchise of a foreign commercial enterprise, which can be easily granted and then taken away. The Russian Orthodox Church officially gained independence in 1589, when Metropolitan Job became the first Patriarch of Moscow,” comments Metropolitan Leonid.

The Exarch of the Russian Orthodox Church for Africa recalled that the Russian Church was formed over the centuries “on the pillars of martyrs and confessors, venerables and saints, blessed and holy fools for Christ’s sake” and has its own deepest history and traditions.

“We went through the abolition of the patriarchate in the Tsar Peter’s and post-Peter’s eras, the many-year trials of godless hard times in the Soviet era, but nothing broke us!” Vladyka added.

The Metropolitan stressed that the Russian Orthodox Church serves God and hundreds of millions of people.

“We are in demand and we are implementing our programs within Russia and abroad without violating the canons and rules of the Ecumenical Councils. And we will continue to do so. The Russian Orthodox Church always stands for an equal dialogue on the platform of canonical principles,” said Metropolitan Leonid.

“As for my humble person and threats to ‘defrock’ me, I should say they cause nothing but a smile. They didn’t frock me, thus it’s not up to them to defrock me,” the Patriarchal Exarch summed up.

Earlier, the UOJ reported that the hierarch of the Greek Church proposed to deprive the ROC of autocephaly for five years and to strip Metropolitan Leonid of the priesthood.

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