Metropolitan Jeremiah of Gortys: “When and where did the Holy Fathers call heresies and schisms ‘Churches?’”


July 5, 2016


“How could it happen that the Holy and Great Council
on Crete called heterodox heretical communities
‘Churches?’” His Grace asked.
“They said, wrote, and signed the term
‘heterodox Christian Churches.’ So now heretics
have become a ‘Church?’ Then what one
Church do we talk about in the Symbol of Faith?”

Met. Jeremiah noted that the Greek Church’s
delegation at the Council breached its obligation to
advocate the unanimously adopted position of the Holy
Synod and its proposed amendment, “Christian
confessions and communities.”

“The worst part,” according to the
metropolitan, “is that in calling the heterodox
‘Churches,’ they gave it weight, presenting
the matter in such a way as if this position has
historical justification:

“‘The Orthodox Church accepts the historical
name of other heterodox Christian Churches and
Confessions…’ What does ‘historical
name’ mean? When and where did the Holy Fathers call
heresies and schisms ‘Churches?’ Nowhere and

“The saddest part” according to Vladyka is the
signing of “propositions that are erroneous from a
dogmatic and ecclesiological point of view” by the
primates of the Local Churches and so many members of the
Council’s delegations.

Met. Jeremiah thanked Met. Hierotheos of Nafpatkos and the
other hierarchs who refused to sign the text
“Relations of the Orthodox Church with the Rest of
the Christian World.” He compared their position
with the conduct of St. Mark of Ephesus, the only one who
refused to sign the union with the Papists at the Council
of Ferrara-Florence.

Met. Jeremiah stated that as a bishop he is united with
those who refused to sign the document which is
“erroneous from a dogmatic point of view:”

“We, Gortys and Megalopolis, support them, because
we do not recognize heresies and schisms as

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