400 Greek believers urge their Metropolitan not to serve with Dumenko
The believers of the Orthodox Church of Greece wrote a letter to Metropolitan Stefanos with a request not to invite Epifaniy Dumenko and not to concelebrate with him.
Having learned that Epifaniy Dumenko was going to serve on the island of Thassos in September together with Patriarch Bartholomew, Archbishop Ieronymos and their ruling Metropolitan, the laity of the Greek Orthodox Church collected signatures to prevent the visit of the head of the OCU. This is reported by the tashyras.worldpress.com.
“We were pleased to learn that, at your suggestion, the Holy Synod of the Greek Church established the month of September for the celebration of the Synaxis of the Saints of the island of Thassos. We were also informed that His Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew and His Beatitude Archbishop Ieronymos of Athens and All Hellas will also arrive during the first celebration of this holday,” believers write.
They report that "a few days ago, our jubilation, however, turned into sorrow, when reports appeared that during this festivity would be attended by the schismatic false bishop of Kyiv, Epifaniy, who is a layman in vestments." The laity write that the structure of Dumenko consists of “self-ordained schismatics”, who were not recognized by 10 out of 14 Orthodox Churches.
“Unfortunately, not only did you not refute these reports, but, on the contrary, you confirmed this visit of theses distinguished guests and the so-called Bishop of Kyiv, Mr. Epifanios, and greatly upset us with your choice.”
Believers write that concelebrating with laity in cassocks is an insult to the high priesthood, given by God.
“Should the aspirations and ambitions of third parties (for example, politicians, diplomats and church leaders) offend Your Eminence and outrage the faithful? … We think that such an action offends both the Triune and One True God, and you as the High Priest, as well as us as believers,” write the laity of the metropolis and call on Metropolitan Stefanos “to counteract all those who conceived this unacceptable action.”
Also, believers of the orthodox Church of Greece note they will continue to collect signatures until they make sure that Dumenko's invitation has been withdrawn. Currently, 407 parishioners of the Church of Greece have signed the letter.
The believers sent copies of the letter to Patriarch Bartholomew, Archbishop Ieronymos, and permanent members of the Synod of the GOC.
Recall that on September 4, on the island of Thassos, the head of the Phanar will perform a liturgy, to which Epifaniy Dumenko is also invited.