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From Kevin Allen’s FB Page: I Support an “Autocephalous” American Church

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From Kevin Allen's FB Page:  I Support an “Autocephalous” American Church

Kevin Allen

Source: Kevin Allen

From Kevin Allen’s FB Page: I Support an “Autocephalous” American Church

I have changed my position and perspective on canonical “administrative unity” for the Orthodox Church in the U.S. (This does not reflect the opinion of AFR or anyone else).

The only “unity” model/solution I would support to the non-canonical fragmentation of multiple bishops and “jurisdictions” – acknowledged as a canonical “anomaly” by many (not all) our heirarchs – is an “autocephalous” American Church; represented on its Synod with all the respective bishops that are currently on the Canonical Assembly of Bishops. The US Synod would have to agree before other Orthodox national churches could send their priests here; in which case they would have to come under the “American Orthodox Church” (or whatever formal name was agreed upon).

Such an autocephalous Orthodox Church would elect – the bishops would – a Patriarch; and the focus of such a Church would ideally be on inclusive church growth and outreach; the needs (linguistic and cultural) of our brother and sister Orthodox immigrants; and a better focus on living and communicating authentic Orthodox Christianity to a post-modern world starving for, but rejecting, many forms of “Christianity”.

I would not support any plan to be “under” the “omophore” of another patriarchate in another country; especially those with ethno-phyletisic leanings.

Do I think this will happen anytime soon (including at the Great and Holy Council being prepared in 2016)? I am skeptical because my sense is that the majority of heirarchs in this country are unwilling to be “separated” from their “mother churches” and would only agree to “administrative unity” if “their “mother church” were in charge.

Would I personally accept the current non-canonical situation of “fragmentation” of multiple jurisdictions that exist today in this landscape, rather than come under a patriarchate in another country, or one with ethno-phyletisitc aspirations?

I would — until by God’s grace and mercy He decides that it is time for an “autocephalous” Orthodox Church in this country; albeit one in close connection with its roots and with the various “mother churches”; but operating as a “self-headed” episcopal Synod based here in the U.S. in the 21st century.

Kevin Allen

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  1. From another forum.

    Here’s what happened. There are no canons stating who can or cannot grant “autocephaly.” The former Metropolia (originally the Russian Mission from 1794), was the same church that arrived in Alaska and spread to San Francisco and NYC. After the Russian Revolution, the Metropolia was left to make it’s own decisions and run it’s own church. So, in 1970 when Moscow granted the Metropolia autocephaly to become the OCA, this was normal for a church that was operating “autocephalic” anyway. Now, according to Canon Law, when an autocephalic church is established in a territory, ALL the Orthodox Churches are obligated to come under its omophor (join it). In 1961, SCOBA wanted this (all the canonical bishops in America) and in 1970 it was made a reality. The Romanians joined the OCA, the Bulgarians, the Albanians, but the Antiochians & Greeks RENEGED. Now, the leader of an autocephalic church has the same authority and responsibilities as any Patriarch. The head of the OCA is the Patriarch of America. Pat. Bartholomew has denied this along with the OCA’s autocephaly – silly. The Antiochians just want to continue and run their own show and play politics between the Greeks & Russians yet, push comes to shove, the Antiochians lean toward the Greeks.

    Pdn. Danilchick (representing Pat. Bartholomew and the Episcopal Assembly in the U.S.) has no real Orthodox theological training and although a very good man, has no clue about pushing for Orthodox Unity UNDER + BARTHOLOMEW. This is why Canon Law is clear; in every “territory” (the USA) an independent operating Orthodox Church is to be established and run itself WITHOUT any foreign intervention. The Greeks are WRONG; + Bartholomew is WRONG; ROCOR is WRONG; Moscow is WRONG; the Antiochians are wrong. If the bishops of the “Assembly” in the US really want unity, at the next meeting in September, ALL the bishops should draw up and sign a document to join the ONLY autocephalic Orthodox Church in America; to take effect Jan. 1, 2016. Do what should have happened in 1970!

    Until this “NEW” Assembly of Bishops SERIOUSLY speaks about becoming members of an AUTOCEPHALIC Orthodox Church in North America, their entire objective is a sham. Unity under an Eastern Pope, Pat. Bartholomew, remains NON-CANONICAL!!!

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