Holy and Great Council

A Plea for Pan-Orthodox Unity

  • George Demacopoulos

    Fr. John Meyendorff & Patterson Family Chair, Co-Director of the Orthodox Christian Studies Center, Fordham University

  • Aristotle Papanikolaou

    Archbishop Demetrios Chair, Co-Director of Orthodox Christian Studies Center, Fordham University

Published on: June 10, 2016
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As many readers of Public Orthodoxy well know, the fate of the Holy and Great Pan-Orthodox Council, scheduled to begin next week, is presently uncertain. At the time of writing, the Patriarchates of Bulgaria, Antioch, and Georgia have retracted their prior consent to take part in the Council, citing insurmountable difficulties. The Patriarchates of Serbia and Russia are presently considering their options. Without the delegations of these local Churches, this Council will likely be transformed into another pre-conciliar Synaxis or it will be postponed altogether.

While recognizing that some issues remain unresolved, a global community of Orthodox scholars–not only theologians, but public intellectuals and pastors committed to Orthodox unity–believe that the painful process of overcoming misunderstanding and division needs to begin now and that the best vehicle for healing is the Pan-Orthodox Council itself.

Please consider signing the petition within the next 40 hours.

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Public Orthodoxy seeks to promote conversation by providing a forum for diverse perspectives on contemporary issues related to Orthodox Christianity. The positions expressed in this essay are solely the author’s and do not necessarily represent the views of the editors or the Orthodox Christian Studies Center.

About authors

  • George Demacopoulos

    Fr. John Meyendorff & Patterson Family Chair, Co-Director of the Orthodox Christian Studies Center, Fordham University

    George Demacopoulos is the Fr. John Meyendorff & Patterson Family Chair of Orthodox Christian Studies, co-director of the Orthodox Christian Studies Center, and a Professor of Historical Theology at Fordham University. Professor Demacopoulos’ research and teaching interests are in the fields of ...

    Read author's full bio and see articles by this author
  • Aristotle Papanikolaou

    Archbishop Demetrios Chair, Co-Director of Orthodox Christian Studies Center, Fordham University

    Aristotle Papanikolaou is Professor of Theology, Archbishop Demetrios Chair in Orthodox Theology and Culture, and the Co-director and Co-founder of the Orthodox Christian Studies Center. Professor Papanikolaou received the 2012 Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching. In 2012-13, Papanikolaou...

    Read author's full bio and see articles by this author

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Public Orthodoxy seeks to promote conversation by providing a forum for diverse perspectives on contemporary issues related to Orthodox Christianity. The positions expressed in the articles on this website are solely the author’s and do not necessarily represent the views of the editors or the Orthodox Christian Studies Center.

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Public Orthodoxy is a publication of the Orthodox Christian Studies Center of Fordham University