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In his greeting speech to the participants in the International Conference on Monasticism and Today’s World, which opened in Nicosia, Cyprus, on 28th November 2019, Metropolitan Nikiphoros of Kykkos and Tillyria (Orthodox Church of Cyprus) expressed his concern over the painful crisis that had arisen within the Orthodox Church because of the uncanonical decision of Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople to recognize the schismatic church of Kiev and to grant it the so-called “autocephaly” in defiance of the unanimous canonical tradition and historical church practice.

“This tragedy of schism between the brethren beloved in the Lord threatens to split the body of the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church of Christ,” Metropolitan Nikiphoros said, as reported by the Information and Education Department of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church citing

The hierarch of the Church of Cyprus stated with regret that the current developments “resemble the threshold of the Great Schism of 1054, which divided Ecumenical Christianity into Western Catholics and Eastern Orthodox. The schism threatens Ecumenical Orthodoxy after the Primates of the Churches of Alexandria and Greece joined the Ecumenical Patriarch’s decision.”

“It is not permissible for anyone, and especially for us Orthodox monks, who are the first defenders of our Church, to remain indifferent to the dramatic situation in which our Orthodoxy has found itself. We all need to translate our passive anxiety into active responsibility. We must prayerfully invoke the mercy of God and the enlightenment of the Holy Spirit, so that the Primates of the Local Orthodox Churches, with all-embracing love and humble and sacrificial thoughts, may listen to the voice of the Lord, overcome impermissible egoism, obsessions, and mania for power, and begin a fraternal pan-Orthodox dialogue aimed at overcoming the present crisis threatening the unity of Orthodoxy,” Metropolitan Nikiphoros also said.

Having reminded all those present at the conference that “the sin of schism is incurable and inexcusable,” Metropolitan Nikiphoros of Kykkos and Tillyria added: “Only if the principle of conciliarity, on which the Orthodox Church has always relied, will work, can a way out of today’s situation be found,” website of the Russian Orthodox Church’s Synodal Department for Monasteries and Monasticism reports.

DECR Communication Service