TEL AVIV, October 27. /TASS/. Orthodox Christians in Jerusalem pray for dialogue between the Ecumenical Church of Constantinople and the Russian Orthodox Church so that they could heal the discord, Archbishop Theodosios (Atallah Hanna) of Sebastia from the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem told TASS.
"We in Jerusalem are praying at the Holy Sepulchre that the two churches will resolve disagreements, put an end to confrontation through dialogue and that the two churches will patch up relations," he said. "I think the crisis might be solved and urge everyone to pray for the soonest resolution to the dispute. There are no crises that have no solutions, as we have one faith and our love for Jesus Christ is also only one."
Archbishop Theodosios pointed out that "implications of the rift between the two churches might be very dangerous for the entire Eastern Orthodox world."
On October 11, a Synod meeting of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople decided to "proceed with granting autocephaly (self-governance) to the Church of Ukraine." The Synod revoked a legally binding status of the 1686 letter, which empowered the Patriarch of Moscow to ordain the Metropolitan of Kiev. In addition, the Synod decided to re-establish the office of the Stavropegion of the Ecumenical Patriarch in Kiev, which means its head would be subordinate directly to the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople. Moreover, the Synod lifted an anathema on the heads of two uncanonical churches in Ukraine - Filaret of the Kiev Patriarchate, and Makary of the Ukrainian Autocephalous Church.
In response, the Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church said on October 15 it had been left with no choice but to sever Eucharistic ties with the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople.