Athonite elders speak out against Dumenko's visit to Greece
17 monks of the Holy Mount Athos have signed a letter against the upcoming visit of the head of the OCU to Greece.
17 monks of the Holy Mount Athos have signed an open letter in which they spoke against the upcoming visit of Epifaniy Dumenko to Greece. The text of the letter is published on orthodoxostypos.gr.
The Athonite elders took the news of the upcoming visit of the head of the OCU to Greece "with great surprise and profound sadness".
The Athonite monks believe that those who give "the unjust and laughable honours to the schismatic Epifaniy" and grant him the title of honorary citizen of the Greek municipality "reward his crimes and commit treason in relation to the canonical Ukrainian Church and the majority of Ukrainian people who belong to it”.
According to the Aphonites, the service with Dumenko is an "unholy ritual" and those who participate in it "risk their salvation and do not honour, but grieve and dishonour the Saints, notably the Apostle Paul, whose teaching on heresies and schisms is strict".
The elders compared the possible joint "communion" of the Greek hierarchs with Epifaniy to the service with the Latins in Hagia Sophia shortly before the fall of Constantinople, which was considered the main cause of the fall of the City.
In this regard, they urged "to pray for divine intervention and cancellation of the fateful activity to avoid its spiritual and ethnic disastrous consequences."
"If the grace of God does not let the events be suspended, we call on everyone (the Metropolitan and, respectively, the clergy and the laity) to refrain (from the joint communion with Dumenko – Ed.); to make a timely declaration on their disagreement and restraint; in addition, as a sign of protest, to avoid concelebration with those who will take part in such unholy gatherings in the future," the elders declared.
Among those who signed the letter were such distinguished monks of Athos as the Elder Gabriel of Karyes, the Hieromonk Arsenios from the Panagouda Cell, in which St. Paisios pursued asceticism, the Monk Euphrosynos, and others.
On September 4, a service with Dumenko, Patriarch Bartholomew and Archbishop Ieronymos will be held on Thassos island.
As earlier reported, 400 laymen of the Greek Church called on their metropolitan not to concelebrate with Dumenko.