Wednesday, September 05, 2018
The Coming Schism (maybe)
No, this is not about the Roman Catholic Church. It is about the Orthodox. Sadly, evidence is rapidly accumulating that the Ecumenical Patriarch intends to take actions in the ongoing schism within the Ukrainian Orthodox Church that are all but guaranteed to provoke a major crisis within the Church. I am still praying that this will not happen but reports are mounting daily, without any denial from the EP or those closely connected to him, that he intends to issue a tomos of autocephaly to the schismatic Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kievan Patriarchate.
It is inconceivable that the Russian Church will not respond by breaking communion.
The question is, how far will the schism spread?
I think it quite possible that the Serbians and Bulgarians will side with Moscow. We can assume the ethnically Greek local churches will side with Constantinople. I am including here the Patriarchates of Alexandria and Jerusalem. The latter is of course composed of 99% Arabs, but the hierarchy is 99% Greek.
As for the rest... The Romanians I honestly have no idea. There is not a lot of love for Russia there but I just don't have any feel for how they will go. The Church of Georgia is close to Moscow. Would that be enough to provoke their taking sides in the schism? Then there is the Church of Antioch. They are already out of communion with Jerusalem over that church's intrusion on Antioch's canonical territory and they are none too thrilled by Constantinople's refusal to come to their aid. And lastly there are what may be called the micro churches... Albania, the Czech Lands, Poland and the OCA.