“Anyone who is not with me is against me.” In 2022, that will be the situation between the Ecumenical Patriarchate and the Patriarchate of Moscow. In short, the coveted unity in Orthodoxy will go to waste. You will either stand by the Phanar or by Russia. Those who fought until today to remain neutral will have to make their choice.
Undoubtedly, the Russians want to and they will push the envelope. They have the financial strength to support and influence and to take with them everyone in need.
Will an unpaid priest in the depths of Africa be interested in unity or how will work to feed his family? “Couldn’t care less about it ” (as the Patriarch used to say) about whether he will commemorate the Patriarch of Alexandria or the Patriarch Moscow.
I cannot understand why the Ecumenical Patriarchate does not see the open wound. Metropolises and monasteries throughout the Orthodox world (and in Greece, of course), ordinary priests, “cultural” institutions and even “ecclesiastical” media seem to be treading paths.
Others move openly with “grants” and others secretly with “charitable support.” Some seek to secure this support. They are already chasing it. Under the pretext of “unity,” many bring grist to the mill of division.
The Phanar refuses
According to the information I receive, things will get even worse because both sides are not willing to retreat and find a compromise. Wherever it finds an empty spot and willingness, the Russian Orthodox Church will “fill” this place. In Turkey, Cyprus and Greece. With willing monasteries, Metropolitans and institutions. To bring the opposing side to its knees.
I am informed that they aim to reach such a point that a new Ecumenical Synod must be convened. There, the aim of the Russian Orthodox Church is to confirm officially the division of Orthodoxy if the balances do not change and everyone comes closer to its demands.
This scenario will grist to the mill of those who hate the Church and want an “official” division. Of course, the Ecumenical Patriarchate does not want to hear about a new Pan-Orthodox Synod. It happened in Crete and it is not in the mood to repeat a similar event. As much as the Moscow Patriarchate is trying and pushing to be drawn in this direction.
Sometimes, however, the rifts do not need Ecumenical Synods to be confirmed. It is time and events that confirm them de facto.