Orthodox council in 2012?

I don’t find any web reports on this English – if you do, let me know. Le Croix reports that plans for a gathering of the entire Orthodox family have never been closer to realization. Moscow and Constantinople had feuded in the 90s over jurisdiction in Estonia, but they seem prepared now to put aside their differences and work together. It is not known, however, to what extent Moscow would accept the historic leadership role of Constantinople, including organizing the council. The major topic of the council would be how the Orthodox can work together and be a presence in the contemporary world. It would be neither dogmatic nor pastoral, this report says. The Patriarch of Moscow, Kirill (Cyril), has shown openness to Rome and a willingness to meet with Pope Benedict XVI. No doubt a pan-Orthodox council could have implications for Catholic-Orthodox relations.



  1. I recall hearing about attempts to work out the jurisdictional disputes (including here in the United States) in the last few months. I don’t recall hearing about a possible council to do this, though.

    The blogpost here on “The Anglo Catholic,” relating what one Antiochian Orthodox priest has “heard” might be the extent to what I’ve heard on this. As a blogpost simply reporting what someone has heard, it obviously ought to be taken with a grain of salt. Even so, the (more reliable) source to which you linked seems to corroborate the main points.

    Should the jurisdictional issues within the Orthodox Church be resolved, I imagine it would immensely aid ecumenical ventures. I also imagine that it would improve the strength of the full Church’s voice in the world.

  2. The meeting could be a way for the patriarchs of Moscow and Constantinople to establish common ground on two issues of crucial importance: administration of the Orthodox churches in North America, and resolving the schism of the Orthodox churches in Ukraine. These two issues have deepened the fissure between the two patriarchates, and their peaceful resolution would allow all involved to move forward.

    Unity among Orthodox in North America has long been desired by laity and, for the most part, has ended with disappointment. The non-US patriarchs have already made moves to change the North American scene by establishing a new episcopal council, which replaces, and mostly duplicates, SCOBA. If the Orthodox could achieve any real unity here, in North America, and pool resources for theological education, dialogue, translations, and so on, it would only benefit Catholic-Orthodox, and indeed all, ecumenical dialogue.

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