Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Appeal The Synod of Bishops of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad 2018 on the danger of self-isolation

a180424-svnod2.jpg

The Synod of Bishops of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad 2018 on the danger of self-isolation

Unfortunately, in our times of apostasy, the dangerous tendency of self-isolation of those considering themselves to be abiding in “true Orthodoxy”- has widely spread. Previously, starting with the Byzantine era, in the event of serious disagreements among Christians, the civil Orthodox authority could convoke Church Councils. Thanks to these Church Councils, at these councils - after carefully considering all the arguments and disagreements - they could come to a general concilliar decision which was mandatory for all. However, presently no such authority exists, and so it is impossible to counter the dispersion of Christians with the help of the state.

On the contrary, the God-fighting authorities undertook the the exact opposite measures - making great efforts to divide the Church, with its goal being the complete annihilation of it. It was precisely in the creation of divisions that these authorities saw one of the main ways of destroying the Church. Currently, however - these divisions often occur not with the help of any authorities, but rather unfortunately proceed from within the Church itself.

In the past, many efforts were made by the catacomb Christians to find a legitimate bishop since they were deeply Orthodox people. They understood that without a bishop there is no church. But now the world is filled with impostors, surrounded both by those who are deceived by them, and by those who became accustomed to ignorance and indifference. Depicting itself as a “little flock”, and using the following words of Christ: “I will build My Church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it” (Matt. 16:18 KJV), and applying that exclusively to themselves and to their present state, they do not think at all about what might happen to them tomorrow.

Tragically, the way of such groups is one - first spiritual marginalization, which eventually turns them into a sect, and then the diminishing of the group, and then ultimately its extinction. Already, we can name a few almost extinct groups from among those who considered themselves to be the “continuation” of the ROCOR. A similar situation occured with the catacomb Christians. However, they were hindered by external circumstances, and so they were not guilty of that which had happened. It is impossible to justify the contemporary “zealots” who are forever orchestrating new schisms in the Church. Modern Russian “true jurisdictions,” or those who are “standing for the truth,” are in the stage of physical extinction, and most of them do not even have the chance of producing the next generation of their followers. We appeal not to those who adhere to the most extreme views, because unfortunately, it is impossible to get through to them. We appeal to those of whom the Savior spoke: “He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.” (Matt. 11:15). We hope that there are still many such persons among the scattered Christians around the world.

Like the Synod of the Greek GOC, our Synod of Bishops constantly made and makes efforts to overcome schisms. And today we call upon all those who tread their paths on the off-roads, or else those who are barely hanging on to a broken part of - as they say- “the damaged ship (the church)”, so as to enter into negotiations, with the goal of looking into the possibility of overcoming the church division. This is the only way that will allow us to jointly strengthen our Church and thus transmit the good news of salvation to many more people. Being in spiritual union with the Greek, Romanian and Bulgarian Old Calendarist Churches, this possibility is feasible. The Church does not need us, but it is we who need to stay within the bosom of the One Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church.

Nowadays, the only unifying force appears to be the fear of God, and the Christian conscience. Therefore, our Synod of Bishops once again calls upon all Orthodox Christians to unite around the true confession of the Orthodox faith, its lawfully ordained bishops, its living Orthodox tradition which the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia has kept, and the sacred sacraments they contain, the most important of which - is the Sacrament of the Body and Blood of Christ. We call upon all to unite around Christ - the only Savior of the Universal Church.

April 12/25, 2018 St. Basil the Confessor, Bishop of Para

Chairman of the Synod of Bishops

+ Metropolitan Agafangel

Members of the Synod:

+ Archbishop George (Secretary of the Synod)

+ Bishop Athanasius

+ Bishop Kirill

+ Bishop Gregory

+ Bishop Nikon

+ Bishop Anfim

Menu

bishop-agafangel1.jpg
Metropolitan Agafangel
First Hierarch of the Russian
Orthodox Church Abroad

161030-10-2.jpg
Bishop John of Melbourne
Vicar bishop of Australia

Church calendar for today

Divine Services - Archangel Michael Sobor in Odessa

Divine services channel is updated every Church feast day

mqdefault.jpg

Parishes

Melbourne, VIC
Contact: Bishop John
Telephone: 0422556968

Sydney, NSW
Parish of St John of Kronstadt.

sydney-church.jpg

sydney-st-john-of-kronstaedta.jpg

  • Serving priest: Father Nebojsa Mirkovic
  • Address:
  • Service times:
    Sundays and feast days: Matins 730 am
    Divine Liturgy: 9 am.
    Please contact us to confirm what time Liturgy is served.
  • Saturdays and eves of feasts: Vespers 530 pm
    or All-night Vigil 6 pm

Dandenong, VIC
Community of the Tabinsk Mother of God Icon

tabinsk-icon-mg.jpg
  • Services once a month
  • Visits by Bishop John

Western Victoria
Annunciation of the Mother of God Women’s Monastic Community

monastery-church.jpg
  • Spiritual Father: Bishop John.
  • Address: 266 Nowhere Creek Rd, Nowhere Creek, 3469
  • Service times:
  • Sundays and feast days: Divine Liturgy: 9 am
  • All-night Vigils (including Divine Liturgy) on select occasions.
    Please contact us to confirm what time Liturgy is served.

[b]Brisbane, QLD

Canberra, ACT

Admin area