3 Greek priests leave Constantinople for ROCOR


Source: Orthodox Christianity

Fr. Spyridon Bailey (left), Fr. Emmanuel Hatzidakis (center), Fr. Ioannis Maridakis (right)

New York, London — Last November, Fr. Mark Tyson left the American Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Diocese (ACROD), a jurisdiction of the Patriarchate of Constantinople in America, and joined the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia (ROCOR) due to his concerns over the Patriarchate’s invasion of Ukrainian Church territory. He was soon followed by Fr. Nectarios Trevino.

Two parishes left Constantinople’s Archdiocese of Russian Orthodox Churches in Western Europe in October and January, also moving into ROCOR. In the meantime, the Patriarchate suddenly revoked the Archdiocese’s exarchate status, leaving its clergy and people to search for a new home, with the Moscow Patriarchate as the most likely candidate.

In March, OrthoChristian reported that ROCOR opened a new mission parish in Lubbock, Texas to serve several families who left the local parish of Constantinople’s Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America.

Now, another three priests have left the jurisdiction of the Patriarchate of Constantinople in order to join ROCOR.

Fr. Spyridon Bailey, formerly of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Thyateira and Great Britain, is now a priest of the ROCOR Diocese of Great Britain and Western Europe, assigned to St. Elisabeth’s in Wallesey, England, according to the diocesan directory.

He is known as the author of several books, including Orthodoxy and the Kingdom of Satan, The Ancient Path, and Journey to Mount Athos, and runs a popular YouTube page with a number of edifying videos.

“My decision to move to ROCOR was as a result of a number of factors. I have, for some time, been concerned about the growing modernist and ecumenist trends in Constantinople. However, the actions in Ukraine convinced me that I had to leave,” Fr. Spyridon commented to OrthoChristian.

On July 13, St. Anthony the Great Monastery (ROCOR) in Phoenix announced on its Facebook page that Fr. Emmanuel Hatzidakis, formerly of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, and Fr. Ioannis Maridakis, originally from Crete, have also joined ROCOR.

Fr. Emmanuel is also known as the author of several popular books, including The Heavenly Banquetand Jesus: Fallen? The Human Nature of Christ Examined From an Eastern Orthodox Perspective. He is also the founder of Orthodox Witness, an organization dedicated to uniting clergy and parishioners of all Orthodox jurisdictions in evangelism. He was received into ROCOR by its primate His Eminence Metropolitan Hilarion of Eastern America and New York.

The monastery’s post says that Fr. Emmanuel has been assigned to a church in Texas, though his son Tony comments that this information is incorrect.

Fr. Ioannis is a married priest with grown children who moved from the island of Crete to America in order to leave Constantinople and join ROCOR, although he does not know English. On July 8, he was assigned to serve as assistant priest to the abbot of the Monastery of St. Anthony the Great, Schema-Igumen Anthony and will handle house visits, sick calls, and some confessions.

He is also the caretaker of a traveling portion of the True Cross and has visited America with the precious and wonderworking relic many times, and will continue to travel with the relic as a blessing to the faithful.

A collection of miracles worked by the relic of the Cross can be found on the website of the Holy Virgin Cathedral “Joy of All Who Sorrow” in San Francisco.



    • Constantinos on

      Aside from the character assassination, this article is surely better than your last one in which you performed a hatchet job on OCL. Your article against OCL was truly disgraceful, but this one isn’t too bad for you, although I’m not really a fan of defaming others. My only suggestion is don’t give up your day job. I’m also delighted to see you are no longer calling yourself a writer of well crafted articles by a “humble” Greek iconographer. Thank you.

    • Constantinos on

      I have to retract most of my sarcastic comments. Your article is actually pretty good, and your comments about these men do have merit. So let’s forget the character assassination statements. You may continue writing, but all I ask of you is to apologize for your hit piece on OCL. That really wasn’t very nice. Also, is it really necessary to refer to yourself as “Archon Elias.” Wouldn’t simply Elias do just as well?


        I try to write articles which are ”actually pretty good” and all my comments have merit, you may disagree with my point, but they have merit. Now let me address your inquiries.

        “Hit piece on OCL”
        That’s rich. I’m more than happy to defend all my points. One at a time, as there’s so much misrepresentations being posted by OCL it’s hard to tackle them all.

        “Archon Elias”
        As you may, or may not be aware, the title “Archon” is an official ecclesial offikion. You may not be partial to it, indifferent to it, or outright disapprove its use, but it is what it is.

        FYI titles are used to show one’s role or position in an assembly for instance:
        society or organization (President, Secretary…),
        military ranks (General, Captain, sergeant…),
        clerical ranks (Archbishop, Father, brother…),
        judicial titles (judge, Attorney, Mufti…),
        legislative and executive titles (Congressman, senator, Gov…), and so on. For example, unless one needs a safe space, he’s “President” Trump, not simply “the resident of the White House.”

        The real question is: Why its use bothers you?

        • Constantinos on

          Archon Elias,
          No, actually I believe a person has a right to call themselves whatever they want. So, brother, it really doesn’t bother me. If you want to call yourself, “The Man in the Moon,” go right ahead.

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