As Archons being armed with the truth is our most important weapon for defending the Mother Church. That’s why I’m delighted to be able to bring you a unique and powerful resource to equip you to defend the Mother Church in the current controversy over the Orthodox Church in Ukraine.
An internationally renowned expert in the ecumenical councils, particularly their canons regarding ecclesiastical jurisdiction, as well as the historical development of the Ecumenical Patriarchate as an institution, has recorded a clear, concise, and informative thirty-minute interview about the current situation in Ukraine.
Despo Lialiou, Professor Emeritus of the Department of Pastoral and Social Theology at Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, outlines the facts, dispels the falsehoods that are gaining wide circulation, and lucidly and compellingly explains the Ecumenical Patriarch’s role as protos in the Church worldwide. Professor Lialiou explains a very complex topic in a simple, straightforward, and readily understandable manner.
Without descending to polemics, Professor Lialiou sets forth the strong canonical and historical case for the Ecumenical Patriarch’s recent actions in Ukraine. She convincingly refutes the Russian accusation of “eastern papism” that is being repeated today in various Internet forums and, unfortunately, seems to me to be dominating the English-speaking Orthodox world.
Professor Lialiou also takes us through history of the Ecumenical Patriarchate and its nurturing love for the universal Church. She even reminds us that it was the Ecumenical Patriarch who protected the other ancient Patriarchates, of Alexandria, Jerusalem and Antioch, when all were under occupation: the Ecumenical Patriarch was the only Christian leader consulted and spoken to by the ruler of the day.
Even more enlightening is the information Professor Lialiou provides about how Moscow was granted autocephaly, and under what conditions that were enumerated at the time for Moscow’s involvement in Ukraine – not least of which was the stipulation that the Ukrainian Church was always to commemorate the Ecumenical Patriarch as first among the hierarchs.
This interview will enable the average Orthodox Christian of any jurisdiction to understand why the Ecumenical Patriarchate has the absolute right to offer a tomos of autocephaly to the Ukrainian Church, and definitively explains the appropriate place and role of Moscow regarding Ukraine.
Brief, enlightening, and hard-hitting, this video is a well-spent 30 minutes. It’s in Greek with English subtitles provided by Archon Nick Furris, so it can be widely disseminated with no communication barrier.
Please forward this email and link to those who will benefit from this critical information and can also help us spread the truth about the Ecumenical Patriarchate and Ukraine. A video is much more effective than a written article to convey to the faithful the historical and theological background of the current difficulties surrounding Ukraine. More people are likely to watch an interview with subtitles than read an article of the same length.
Professor Lialiou has given us an important contribution to the wider conversation that is going on right now in the English-speaking Orthodox world. I make it available to you with gratitude to Almighty God and prayers that He will heal the wounds of the Church worldwide and protect and strengthen the Mother Church.
Anthony J. Limberakis, MD