LAST UPDATE 15:05
Si vis pacem, para bellum or as we say in Greek “if you want peace, prepare for war”. The Latin saying has been in practice in recent months on the Ukrainian-Russian border.
War drums do not just sound there. Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, in charge of foreign relations of the Moscow Patriarchate, was clear: After the Patriarchate of Alexandria, the Moscow Patriarchate intends to establish an exarchate in Constantinople to meet the needs of the Russian-speaking faithful in Turkey.
“The Russians will not stop in Constantinople,” point out Greek Metropolitans who have studied in depth the movements of the Russian Church.
The plan of the Moscow Patriarchate is to “press” in all areas of the SE Mediterranean and the Middle East, according to informations analyzed by the competent departments and the Greek Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The Patriarchate of Jerusalem is friendly to Moscow as it does not want to lose the support of the Russians. “For reasons of survival,” as the Patriarch of Jerusalem has stated to his own people.
In Turkey, in the heart of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, the Russians want to enter for reasons – mainly – of semiotics. The Russian plan envisages also the “invasion” in Cyprus through Metropolitans who are close to the Russian Church.
Many of the Bishops and parishes never agreed with the choice of the Archbishop of Cyprus Chrysostom to support Phanari and to recognize the Autochephaly of the Church of Ukraine. A move that angered the Moscow Patriarchate and the Kremlin.
The continuation of the Russian plan envisages the establishment of a Russian “exarchate” in Greece. An “exarchate” that can count, according to rough estimates, even 400,000 members!
Christian communities that can recognize the Moscow Patriarchate as the highest ecclesiastical authority, are many of parishes and Metropolitans that follow the old calendar. A support from the financially strong Moscow Patriarchate will not leave them indifferent.
The Metropolitans of the Church of Greece (Mesogaia, Corfu) and specific Monasteries of Mount Athos have also shown that the are attracted to Russia’s positions.They obviously support the official Church, but in private discussions they adopt the positions of the Russian Church.
In addition, Metropolitans of Thrace have sounded the alarm bell informing the Holy Synod of the Church of Greece. In their areas, thousands of anti-vaxxers may be cut off from the body of the official church and “adopted” by the Russians, they claim, recognizing the Moscow Patriarchate as the highest ecclesiastical authority
It is not accidental, they note that many Christians of Pontic origin who adopt anti-vaccinal rhetoric, identify themselves more with the position of Moscow. Groups that can easily get close to the Russian Patriarchate, say Metropolitans.
The Greek Ministry of Foreign Affairs is carefully observing the movements that are evolving on the church chessboard in the SE Mediterranean.
Also, senior officials at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, are deeply worried with the information about the monasteries of Mount Athos that maintain excellent relations with the Russian Church and through “institutions” they finance -with vast financial resources- ecclesiastical web sites that strengthen the position of the Russian Church against the Ecumenical Patriarchate.
Sources from the Phanar, say that they have even created a church web-channel with hourly news and expensive TV productions. The Greek Prime Minister K. Mitsotakis and the Minister of Foreign Affairs Mr. Dendia have already been informed by Archbishop Ieronymos and Metropolitans for the “Russian” invasion in Greece and the repercussions this could have for the country.