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The 70th Anniversary of the Pan-Orthodox Congress, Part II of II

A Major Step on the Path Towards Apostasy

by Bishop Photius of Triaditsa

During his uncanonical tenure as Archbishop of Athens, the Freemason Meletius Metaxakis raised the question of changing the Church Calendar before the Synod of the Greek Church. Meletius offered to set up a commission in order to study this question. The Greek Church approved his suggestion and issued the necessary directives. The commission sent the following finalized text to the Synod: "It is the opinion of the commission that a change in the calendar is possible only if it does not violate canonical and dogmatic teachings, and is agreed upon by all autocephalous Orthodox Churches — first of all by the Constantinople Patriarchate, which should be given the opportunity to show the initiative in all decisions of this nature. Furthermore, we should not simply change to the Gregorian calendar, but rather a new, more scientifically accurate calendar should be created, free from the inaccuracies of both the Julian and Gregorian calendar." [1] This feeble and diplomatically correct proposal advocates, without any particular argument, the necessity of introducing an entirely new Church Calendar. At the same time, it attempts to preserve the necessary propriety by speaking of the canonical and dogmatic basis of any change and the need for a conciliar decision. These demands would later be dispensed with.

The commission's decision was a new step towards calendar reform so sought after by Meletius and his cohorts. The Greek Synod, at its session on May 20, 1919 unanimously accepted Meletius' opinion that the "government should be free to adopt the Gregorian calendar as the European calendar and, until a new scientific calendar be established, the Church would continue to use the Julian." [2] The synod delivered its opinion to the government together with the commission's decision concerning the calendar reform. Meletius pronounced the following famous words during the session: "The situation of the Church in Russia has now changed and the possibility of drawing closer to the West is more favorable." Furthermore, Meletius emphasized, "We consider it imperative to reform the calendar." [3]

After his meteoric and uncanonical elevation to the Throne of Constantinople, Meletius Metaxakis continued his stubborn and methodical work for calendar change. He took upon himself the "initiative" recommended by the Synod of the Church of Greece's commission, and issued an encyclical on February 3, 1923, "To the Most Blessed and Honorable Churches of Alexandria, Antioch, Jerusalem, Serbia, Cyprus, Greece and Rumania," [4] introducing the question of changing the Church Calendar. The epistle cites the following motivations behind the calendar reforms: "The question of the calendar has been long standing, but has taken on a special importance in our day," [5] when, "the necessity of using a common, universal calendar familiar to Europe and America becomes more and more evident." [6] One Orthodox government after another has accepted the "European calendar." The difficulty of using two calendars in social life is self-evident. Therefore, the desire to find and to establish one common calendar for social and religious circles has arisen on all sides. It is necessary not only so that every Orthodox Christian may function harmoniously as a citizen and a Christian, but also so that we may advance universal Christian unity. We are all called to this task in the name of the Lord by celebrating together His Nativity and Resurrection." [7] Meletius gave these same reasons during his introductory speech at the opening of the "Pan-Orthodox" Congress. [8]

The basis for Church Calendar reform obviously does not have its roots in tradition, theology, liturgical life or the canonical rules of the Orthodox Church, but rather in the one-sided, semi-religious, semi-social approach of the ecumenical cult which is grounded in a political-religious ideal of "Christian unity."

In his epistle, Meletius Metaxakis calls upon the "representatives of the Holy Orthodox Churches to agree to the forming of a commission comprised of one or two representatives of every Church to meet in Constantinople immediately after the celebration of Pascha, in order to make a detailed study of the calendar question and other possibly urgent Pan-Orthodox questions, and to indicate the means for their canonical solution." [9]

Meletius's epistle did not meet with a positive response from the older, more ancient Patriarchates (after Constantinople); those of Alexandria, Antioch and Jerusalem. Nevertheless, the above mentioned commission began its work on May 10, 1923, under the auspices of Meletius. Nine members took part in the sessions: six bishops, one archimandrite, and two laymen. The representatives of Constantinople were: Patriarch Meletius IV as president, Metropolitan Callikos of Kizik, and the layman V. Antoniadis, a Professor at the Halki Theological Institute. There was one representative from Cyprus: Metropolitan Basil of Nicea (later Ecumenical Patriarch, 1925–1929). The Serbian Church had two representatives: Metropolitan Gabriel of Montenegro and Milutin Milankovitch, a laymen and professor of mathematics and mechanics at Belgrade University. From the Church of Greece there was one representative: Metropolitan James of Drach. From the Rumanian Church there was one representative: Archimandrite Jules (Scriban).

Archbishop Alexander (Nomolovsky) of North America and the Aleutian Islands, who at that time was of unclear canonical status, did not actually represent anyone (serious canonical charges had been brought against him by the Synod of the Russian Church Abroad, as a result of which he transferred to the Evlogian Exarchate, under the jurisdiction of the Ecumenical Patriarchate).

Besides these nine participants, Archbishop Anastassy (Gribanovsky, later Metropolitan) of Kishinev and Hotinsk, a member of the Synod of the Russian Church Abroad, who was at that time in Constantinople, also took part. He announced at the first session on May 10, 1923 that he had no "definite instructions from the Russian Hierarchs at Karlovtsy concerning the calendar question." [10] He soon abandoned this unusual meeting.

To call such a church forum "Pan-Orthodox" is, to put it mildly, presumptuous. The representatives of the three elder sees after Constantinople (Alexandria, Antioch and Jerusalem) refused to take part. The Russian Church, the Archbishop of Sinai and the Bulgarian Church (which the Ecumenical Patriarch considered to be schismatic at that time) also did not participate. It is noteworthy that more than half of the local Churches were not represented, and the authority of those who did participate is questionable as well. According to the opinion of the famous canonist and theologian, S. Troitsky, who analyzed the ecclesiological-legal aspect of this question, the members of the commission had no right, at the time of the meeting, to express the opinions of their Churches since the local Churches had not yet formulated their decisions on the questions that went into the protocol of the congress. In such circumstances the delegates could only, in fact, express "their own, personal opinions," [11] or, at best, the opinion of their synods, which themselves had no right to decide general Church, canonical or even more importantly, dogmatic questions. Professor Troitsky defines this "Pan-Orthodox Congress" from an ecclesiological point of view as "a private meeting of a few people, who had as their agenda the examination of various questions which troubled the Orthodox Church at that time, concerning which, they expressed their opinions."[12] Nevertheless, in spite of the canonical irregularity of the congress' make-up and its representatives, Meletius very self-assuredly announced that, "We work as a commission of the whole Church."[13]

As we can see, considered as an organ of legislation, the congress of 1923 was in fact a defective precedent. It was created and began its activity as "a Commission of Orthodox Churches" [14] or "Pan-Orthodox Commission," [15] and changed its title to "Pan-Orthodox Congress" during its third session, on May 18, 1923. Professor Troitsky is perfectly justified in noting that for the first time in the history of the Orthodox Church, which up to this time had only one organ of general church legislation—the Councils, some sort of "Pan-Orthodox"congress took this task upon itself, modeled after Pan-Anglican conferences and political conferences and congresses.[16] In his memorandum of November 14, 1929 to the Archepiscopal Synod of the Church of Greece, Metropolitan Ireneaus of Kassandria (+1945) wrote indignantly: "What right does that upstart [Meletius Metaxakis] have to create a Pan-Orthodox Congress without consulting the Metropolitans of the Ecumenical Throne? What law or canon gives the representative of one local Church the right to change the decisions of all the Eastern Patriarchs concerning the question of the calendar and Paschalia to, which was finalized by the illustrious Patriarchs Joachim III of Constantinople, Meletius Pigas of Alexandria, Joachim of Antioch and Sophronius of Jerusalem? Is it possible that in civil matters a lower court can reverse a decision of a higher court?"[17]

To summarize the above we might conclude: In agreement with the holy canons, church questions of local and general significance are to be discussed exclusively by a Council of Bishops [18] who have flocks and dioceses, not by "congresses," "meetings," or "conferences." From a legal-ecclesiastical point of view, the "Pan-Orthodox" Congress in Constantinople was uncanonical in its make-up, authority, and establishment. Therefore, its decisions, made in the name of the entire Orthodox Church, were made without any authority, and have no significance for the local Orthodox Churches. Furthermore, the very content of the decisions is in direct opposition to the canons of the Orthodox Church.

Let us briefly review the work of the 1923 congress. It spanned eleven sessions from May 11 to June 8, 1923, and was not concerned exclusively with the question of reforming the Church Calendar. At the second session (May 11, 1923) Patriarch Meletius listed the following "canonical and ecclesiastical questions," concerning which the commission was to formulate its opinion:

1) The question of transferring the Feast Days of major saints to the nearest Sunday with the goal of lessening the number of holidays.

2) The question of impediments to marriage.

3) The question of marriage and the clergy:

a) The Episcopate and marriage;

b) Second marriages for widowed priests and deacons;

c) Whether it is absolutely essential for the sacrament of ordination to follow the sacrament of marriage;

4) The question of church services;

5) The question of the fasts;

6) The necessity of calling a Pan-Orthodox Council annually.[19]

In addition to the above six points, questions were raised concerning the canonical age for ordination, the question of clergy cutting their hair and beards, and clerical dress. These question, headed by the question of the calendar, were presented for discussion on the basis of the renovationist tendencies typical of post-war Orthodox liberalism. These tendencies were characterized by: a desire to replace the Julian Calendar for immovable and movable feasts, and the possibility of allowing that Pascha should become an immovable feast, fixed to a specific Sunday; a willingness to accept any new, more scientifically accurate calendar reckoning (not even excluding the renunciation of the seven day week); permitting married bishops, second marriages for clergy and marriage after ordination; and a shortening of church services and fasts.

The possibility of uniting the Orthodox and Anglican Churches was also discussed. At the the congress's fifth session (May 23, 1923) the former Anglican bishop of Oxford, Gore, was present as a guest along with the pastor Bexton who was accompanying him. Gore was given a seat to the right of Patriarch Meletius who entrusted him with two documents: a petition from 5,000 Anglican priests in whose opinion there was nothing to prevent union with the Orthodox; and another, containing the conditions for such a union.[20] Gore expressed his great joy at being present at the Pan-Orthodox Congress, "where we have gathered in order to discuss various church questions and, most importantly, the question of the calendar." [21] "For us, living in the West" the Anglican bishop emphasized, "it would be a source of great spiritual satisfaction to have the possibility of celebrating together [with the Orthodox] the major Christian feasts: the Nativity, Easter, and Pentecost."[22] Recall how Meletius Metaxakis himself indicated in his epistle to the heads of the seven local Orthodox Churches that a calendar reform was imperative: "In order to facilitate the union of all Christians so that all who call upon the name of the Lord might celebrate His Nativity and Resurrection on the same day."[23] In fact, only three years after the publication of the encyclical was announced by the Patriarchate at Constantinople in 1920, there already existed the possibility of making the first step towards union with the heterodox which was envisioned by the encyclical: "The acceptance of one calendar for the universal celebration of the great Christian feasts."[24] It comes as no surprise that long before the congress accepted the above decisions Patriarch Meletius turned to the Anglican bishop Gore asking him "to inform the Archbishop of Canterbury that we are well disposed to accept the New Calendar which you in the West have decided upon."[25] These words candidly express the tendency which had been implied in the premeditated decision of the "Pan-Orthodox" Congress concerning the calendar question.

The main issue discussed by the congress was the acceptance of the so-called "New Julian" calendar, or the "Revised Julian" calendar, the project of Professor M. Milankovitch, one of the delegates in the congress. In fact, this [new] calendar corresponds with the Gregorian calendar until the year 2800, when a difference of one day will occur in leap years. Nonetheless, this difference will even out in the year 2900. What an amazing discovery! Thus it becomes possible to "celebrate the major Christian feast days simultaneously with the heterodox" and, at the same time, traditionally minded Orthodox Christians can be assured that they will have not adopted the Roman Catholic calendar. Patriarch Meletius, using typical Jesuit sophistry to placate those who opposed the calendar reform, during the fourth session of the congress (May 21, 1923) read out a telegram from Patriarch Damian of Jerusalem stating, "A change in the Church Calendar is of no use and will not be accepted by our Patriarchate because it would place us in an unfavorable position in relation to the holy places of pilgrimage and to the Latins."[26] Meletius responded by announcing, "In addition, the Church at Jerusalem does not desire to adopt the Gregorian Calendar and celebrate Pascha with the Roman Catholics. We must clarify the fact that we are not adopting the Gregorian Calendar and that in a certain number of years a difference will appear between the Orthodox and Catholics in [the date of] the celebration of Pascha. Therefore, the qualms of the Church at Jerusalem are, in part, appeased."[27] Of course, Meletius "omits" the specifics that "a certain number of years" is, in actuality, a full nine centuries!

Decisions were made in Constantinople on June 5 and 6 concerning the following:

1) "The correction" of the Julian calendar and the determining of the date of celebration of Pascha "on the basis of astronomical calculations."

2) The conditions under which the Church would take part in discussions about a New Calendar, "which is more accurate, both scientifically and practically."

3) The marriage of priests and deacons after ordination.

4) A second marriage of widowed priests and deacons.

5) Various other categories: the youngest possible age for ordination to the three levels of the priesthood; the "material and spiritual well-being" of pastors; the hair and exterior appearance of clergy [i.e., the cutting of the beard and hair, wearing of the rassa]; the keeping of monastic vows; impediments to marriage; the celebration of saints' days during the week as non-working days; the question of fasts.

6) The celebration of the 1600th anniversary of the First Ecumenical Council at Nicea (325–1925), and the gathering of a Pan-Orthodox Council.

7) The question of the "Living Church" Council which took place in Moscow in June, 1923 at which Patriarch Tikhon, then in prison, was defrocked.[28]

The text of the decision to "correct" the Julian calendar and change the Julian Paschalia [29] ends with the words, "This reform of the Julian calendar is not a stumbling block to further change in the calendar that the other Christian Churches might like to make." [30] This concept was further developed and concretely stated in the second decision where it was literally said, "The Pan-Orthodox Congress in Constantinople…requests that the Ecumenical Patriarchate announce to the people, after an exchange of opinions with the other Orthodox Churches, that the Orthodox most willingly desire to adopt in the future the New Calendar in which the order of days of the week [that is, seven] will be maintained, although it does not bind itself to such an opinion if the other churches agree to adopt a new calendar which would abolish the usual number of days in a week." [31] Further, it was indicated that, in agreement with the other "Christian Churches," the Orthodox Church was prepared to celebrate the Lord's Pascha as a fixed day on a specified Sunday, with the desire that "this fixed Sunday would correspond to the actual [historical] day of Resurrection of the Lord, which was to be determined by scientific methods." [32]

These four decisions of the 1923 congress were promulgated in the typical style of Orthodox modernism, full of exhortations about "harmony with contemporary life" and "ecumenical expansiveness." The third and fourth decisions of the congress permitted the marriage of priests and deacons after ordination and second marriages for widowed clergy, although this was contrary to Church Tradition and canons (26th Apostolic canon; 3rd and 4th canons of the Fourth Ecumenical Council). [33]

In the Council's fifth resolution it was considered right for clergy to cut their hair and wear lay clothing outside of church. Local Churches were called upon to decide each separate case where saints' days would be celebrated on weekdays, "until a new calendar would be established in which the celebration of specific feast days could be fixed only on Sundays in order to lessen the number of holidays." [34] A new Menaion would of necessity be created in order for this system to work in practice. During the sixth resolution a request was made that the Ecumenical Patriarchate take upon itself the initiative of calling an Ecumenical Council in order to decide "all questions concerning the Orthodox Church at the present time." [35]

One could appraise the activity and decisions of the "Pan-Orthodox" Council of 1923 with the words of Saint Athanasius the Great, "All of this without the consent of the whole [catholic] Church." [36]

In fact, the first five resolutions of the congress are in total contradiction to the Tradition and canonical norms of the Catholic, Orthodox Church. The abolition of the Julian Paschalia — a break with the seventh Apostolic canon and the decisions of the First Ecumenical Council, which the Antiochian Council refers to — potentially places upon the congress at Constantinople a serious canonical sanction. The celebration of the Lord's Pascha is categorically forbidden on the same day as the Jewish Passover in the above mentioned canons. Following the New-Julian Paschalia (which is, in fact, the same as the Gregorian), the Resurrection of Christ sometimes falls on the same day as the Jewish Passover, and often before it (which is also forbidden). It is noteworthy that, according to the resolution of the Holy Fathers of the Council of Antioch, those who violate the decisions concerning the celebration of Pascha must be excommunicated from the Church without previous investigation of their violation. Such a strict sentence is rarely encountered in the canons.

A similar spirit is encountered in the resolutions compiled by the sigilliums of the Eastern Patriarchs in 1583 and 1584, and the ecumenical epistle of the Ecumenical Patriarch Cyril V of 1756, which categorically condemned those who adopted the Gregorian Calendar and Paschalia.

Afraid of these sanctions and aware of their enormous canonical responsibility in light of a change in the only canonical Paschalia, the Julian, not one of the local Orthodox Churches which had adopted the New Calendar for the celebration of the cycle of feasts (that is, the Menaion) dared institute the Gregorian Paschalia (with the exception of the Church of Finland). Thus, the New Style Churches began, in practice, to use two calendars simultaneously: the Gregorian for fixed feast days, and the Julian for movable ones.

Not a single local Church adopted the third, fourth and fifth resolutions which cried out in contradiction of Church Tradition and canons.

Even if one does not consider important the uncanonical nature of the congress at Constantinople with regards to its make-up and authority, the irregularity of its actions, and the anti-Orthodox essence of the congress which, ironically, called itself "Pan-Orthodox," is sufficient to discredit it.

Besides, even during the sessions themselves a huge wave of disfavor arose. Archbishop Chrysostomos (Papadopoulos), who himself was one of the initiators of the calendar reform, wrote, "Unfortunately, the Eastern Patriarchs who refused to take part in the congress rejected all of its decisions by one act alone," their absence.[37] The Mason, A. Zervudakis, in his monograph on Meletius Metaxakis wrote, "Meletius met with great dissension when he decided to adopt in Constantinople some American traditions as well as to his innovative views concerning the calendar, the Paschalia, the marriage of clergy, etc., which instigated problems and great resistance."[38]

Remember that on June 1, 1923 a group of religious leaders and laymen gathered in Constantinople for a meeting which grew into an attack on the Patriarchate, with the goal of deposing Meletius and evicting him from the city.

In spite of this, the Synod of Constantinople, under the presidency of Meletius, circulated a written announcement to all the local Orthodox Churches on June 25, expressing his expectation of their "general approval" of the resolutions on the calendar reform, and their confirmation of "the resolutions of the congress as those of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church (sic!).[39] Nonetheless, the Mason, Meletius Metaxakis', ambition met with serious resistance. Patriarch Photius of Alexandria (1900–1925), in his epistle of June 25, 1923 to Patriarch Gregory IV of Antioch (1906–1928), categorized the calendar reform as "pointless, uncanonical and harmful."[40] In the words of Patriarch Photius the resolutions of the Congress at Constantinople "smell of heresy and schism."[41] In the epistle of October 7, 1923 of Patriarch Gregory IV to the Ecumenical Patriarch, he indicates that the calendar was adopted too quickly and that its institution was "untimely and suspicious."[42] The Patriarch of Antioch sent a copy of Patriarch Photius' epistle to the Russian Metropolitan Anthony (Khrapovitsky) in Karlovtsy with a gramota in which was written, "You can clearly ascertain the opinion of three of the Eastern patriarchs with regard to the questions raised by the meeting at Constantinople."[43] Patriarch Damian of Jerusalem (1897–1931), in his telegram to the Patriarch of Constantinople also emphasized, "For our Patriarchate it is impossible to accept a change in the Church Calendar since it will place us in a very disadvantageous position in the holy places of pilgrimage in relationship to the Roman Catholics because of the danger of proselytism." [44]

Patriarch Meletius IV was not above resorting to deception in order to attain his anti-Orthodox goals. In his letter of July 10, 1923 he attempted to deceive Archbishop Seraphim of Finland into believing that the New Calendar had been accepted for church use, "in agreement with the general opinion and resolutions of the Orthodox Churches."[45] Patriarch Tikhon was also led astray in the same manner. Under the false impression that the calendar reform had been accepted by the entire Orthodox Church, he published an edict introducing the New Calendar in the jurisdiction of the Russian Church. This innovation was decisively rejected by the people. When the truth finally became apparent the Patriarchal resolution was repealed. Metropolitan Anthony of Kiev, in the name of the Russian Hierarchs Abroad, declared that, "The calendar reform can not be accepted by the Russian Church inasmuch as it contradicts the holy canons and ancient tradition of Church practice sanctified by the Ecumenical Councils."[46]

Patriarch Demetrius of Serbia informed Meletius in his letter of June 8/21, 1923 that he would agree to the resolution of the congress concerning the change of calendar only "on the condition that it be accepted simultaneously in all the Orthodox Churches."[47] Archbishop Kyrill of Crete, in his letter and telegram of August 23/September 5, 1923 suggested "to postpone the acceptance of the resolution until an agreement be made by all the Churches, in order to avoid schism in the Orthodox Church."[48] Only Metropolitan Miron (Curista) of Bucharest announced, in his letter of December 17, 1923, that the Rumanian Orthodox Church accepted the decision of the congress, specifying that it would be put into practice in 1924.[49]

The fact that the local Churches were subjected to external pressure with the goal of forcing them to accept the decisions on calendar reform is evident in the following revealing announcement of Archbishop Chrysostomos (Papadopoulos) of Athens: "The Rumanian and Serbian ambassadors to Athens constantly questioned the Archbishop ofAthens concerning the delay of the adoption of the congress's resolutions."[50] In one report of the Church of Greece after the New Calendar was instituted there in 1924 we read, "Unfortunately, this change [of the calendar] was not accomplished by means of inquiry and preparation, but rather primarily under the influence of extreme factions."[51] The crude interference of civil authorities in the adaptation of the New Calendar for church use in Greece, Rumania and Finland is proven by the well known wave of violence used against those Orthodox Christians who dared to remain faithful to the Faith of their Fathers.

Even Archbishop Chrysostomos (Papadopoulos) of Athens, himself one of the most active propagators of calendar reform, found it expedient to discuss the Church Calendar question again at the synod meeting of the bishops of the Church of Greece in connection with the persistent demands of Patriarch Photius of Alexandria to call an Ecumenical Council.[52]

As a matter of fact, the Constantinople Patriarchate itself, in connection with the sixth resolution of the "Pan-Orthodox" Congress,[53] desired to call an Ecumenical Council in 1925. However, the Serbian Church, after the bitter experience of the congress of 1923, expressed the desire that all the autocephalous Orthodox Churches take part; that serious preparation be done before the Ecumenical Council take place by commissions of the autocephalous Churches, and that a general preparatory conference or pro-synod be held.[54]

In fact, in connection with preparations for the Ecumenical Council an inter-Orthodox commission was held in 1930 at Vatopedi Monastery on Mount Athos. According to Metropolitan Ireneaus of Kesandria, the representative of the Serbian Patriarchate, Metropolitan Nicholas (Velimorovitch +1956), a well educated and righteous hierarch, stated that the Serbian Church would not participate in the inter-Orthodox commission unless it was assured that it would have nothing in common with the "Pan-Orthodox" Congress at Constantinople which adopted resolutions concerning the calendar change. "If this condition is not met the Serbs will condemn the Ecumenical Patriarchate," reported Metropolitan Irenius.[55] According to Chrysostomos, the former Metropolitan of Florin (+1955), the first hierarch of the Greek Old-Calendar Church, the representatives of the Serbian and Polish Churches considered the leaders of the local Orthodox Churches who had adopted the New Calendar to be "in essence schismatics," and refrained from prayerful communion with them.[56]

Nonetheless, in spite of the reaction against the decisions of the Congress of 1923 concerning the calendar reform, and in spite of the categorical refusal to accept its other anti-canonical resolutions, the so-called "New-Julian Calendar" was gradually accepted by the governing bodies of many local Churches.[57] Meletius' successor, Metropolitan Gregory VII, who was surrounded by followers and disciples of Meletius, introduced the New Style into the jurisdiction of the Patriarchate of Constantinople in 1924. The Church of Greece accepted the New Calendar on March 1, 1924. Archbishop Chrysostomos (Papadopoulos) of Athens must have forgotten the words he wrote while still an Archimandrite in a report given to the Greek government by the five member commission on the question of calendar reform in January, 1923: "Not a single one of them [local Orthodox Churches] can separate from the others and adopt the New Calendar without becoming schismatic in relation to the others."[58] The Rumanian Church adopted the "New-Julian" Calendar on October 1, 1924 and as a reward was granted the status of Patriarchate.[59] As mentioned above, Meletius Metaxakis was forced, in his capacity as Patriarch of Alexandria, to introduce the New Calendar into the Church of Alexandria by Arabs in America, without whose material subsidies the Antiochian Patriarchate could not exist, according to a statement made by Metropolitan Alexander of Emess in July, 1948.[60]

This depressing list of facts could be further expanded, but that which has been reported is sufficient to prove the tragic consequences of the "Pan-Orthodox" Congress at Constantinople. The adoption even in part of the congress' anti-canonical resolutions on the Church Calendar reform destroys the centuries old liturgical unity of the Orthodox Church, and invites division in the local Churches themselves between adherents of the patristic Church Calendar and those who adopt the "Revised-Julian" Calendar.

The "Pan-Orthodox," or actually, as we have shown, anti-Orthodox congress at Constantinople was the first break in the link of Orthodox unity in our century. The congress admitted the Trojan horse of ecumenism into the Orthodox Church, from whose womb newer and newer false prophets of Babel continue to emerge, striving to destroy the sacred altars of Orthodoxy in order to construct the temple of heresy and error on Her ruins.

Endnotes for Part II

1) Delimpasis, A.D., Pascha of the Lord, Creation, Renewal, and Apostasy, Athens, 1985, pp. 650-651 [In Greek].

2) Ibid, p.652.

3) Ibid, p.651.

4) Mpatistatou, D. Proceedings and Decisions of the Pan-Orthodox Council in Constantinople, Athens, 1982, p.5 [in Greek].

5) Ibid

6) Ibid

7) Ibid p 6.

8) Ibid pp. 13-14.

9) Ibid, pp. 6-7.

10) Ibid, p.20.

11) Troitsky, S. "Concerning the Question of Second Marriages For Priests, Church Herald, September 1949, p.1-2 [in Bulgarian].

12) Archimandrite Seraphim, An Orthodox View of the Old and New Style Calendar, typewritten [in Bulgarian].

13) Proceedings and Decisions... op. cit. p.36.

14) Ibid, pp 11, 23.

15) Ibid, p. 29

16) Archimandrite Seraphim, Collected Essays, p.31 [in Bulgarian].

17) The Ecumenical Patriarch Meletios Metaxakis (1871-1935) a) the Masons, b)the Innovators, c)the Ecumenists OEM, 1990, I-XII, Chaps. 18-21, p.155.

18) The 37th Apostolic canon, the 5th canon of the First Ecumenical Council, the 19th canon of the Sixth Ecumenical Council, the 6th canon of the Seventh Ecumenical Council.

19) Proceedings and Decisions..., op. cit, pp. 24-26.

20) The Ecumenical Patriarch..., op. cit. Chaps. 18-21, p.157.

21) Chapters and Decisions..., op. cit. p.86.

22) Ibid

23) Ibid, p.6.

24) The Inspiration and Moving Spirits of the Innovations: The Two Luthers of the Orthodox Church, OEM, Chap. 17, p. 74.

25) Ibid, p.88.

26) Proceedings and Decisions..., op. cit. p.69.

27) Ibid.

28) Ibid, pp. 211-222.

29) Paragraph eight of this resolution reads, "The determination of the Paschal new moon must be based on astronomical calculations, in accordance with modern scientific information, Proceedings and Decisions..., p.212.

30) Proceedings and Decisions..., op. cit. p.212.

31) Ibid, p 214.

32) Ibid, p. 215.

33) Ibid, pp.215-218.

34) Ibid, pp. 210-220.

35) Ibid, p 221.

36) BEPES, 33, 153.

37) Archbishop Chrysostomos, The Reform of the Julian Calendar in the Church of Greece, Athens, 1933, pp. 31-38 [in Greek].

38) quoted from OEM, I-XII, 1990, paragraph 18-21, p. 154, adn. 12.

39) Orthodoxia, 1926, p. 62, quoted from Delimpasis, op. cit. p. 672.

40) Church Messenger, September 1923, No. 41, p.6.

41) same as above

42) Delimpasis, op. cit. p. 672.

43) Church Messenger, 1923, No. 41, p.6.

44) Orthodoxia, 1926, p. 63 and Delimpasis, op. cit., p. 672.

45) see Church News, No. 19 and 20, 1/14-15/28. X. 1923.

46) Orthodoxia, 1926, p. 63 and Delimpasis op. cit., p. 672.

47) Ibid, pp. 64-65.

48) Ibid, pp. 68-69.

49) Ibid, pp. 65-68.

50) Delimpasis, op. cit., p. 673.

51) The Church of Greece, The Calendar Question, Athens, 1971, pp. 7-8, and OEM, 1989, Chap. 17, p. 69.

52) Delimpasis, op. cit. p. 673.

53) See the above resolutions of the congress, p. 5.

54) See S. Troitsky, "Let us Fight Together Against Danger," Journal of the Moscow Patriarchate, 1950, No. 2, pp. 46-47 [in Russian].

55) See OEM, 1989, Chap. 17, p.69.

56) Ibid.

57) As we mentioned, the New Calendar was adopted only for the Menaion cycle of set feasts, contrary to the decision of the congress, where a change in Paschalia was studied, the date of Christ's Pascha continues to be determined according to the ancient calendar, the Alexandrian Paschalia.

58) Journal of the Government of the Greek Kingdom, the first chapter, 24/25. 1. 1923, No. 8, see also OEM, 1989, Chapter 17, p. 73.

59) Archimandrite Seraphim, Collected Essays, pp. 37-38.

60) same as above


BEPES — The Library of the Greek Fathers and Ecclesiastical Writers, given by the Apostolic Service of the Church of Greece.

OEM — Orthodox Origins and Martyria, published by the Holy Synod, tri-monthly.

From Orthodox Life, Nos. 1 & 2, 1994