The Gift That Keeps on Giving

Bartholomew is solving ecclesiastical problems again.  Thanks, but no thanks. One Ukrainian Charlie Foxtrot is more than enough.

I’m wondering how the Church of Greece feels right about now? I’m sure the Serbs are white-hot with rage. Seriously, something has got to be done. And quick.


The Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew had a meeting with the Prime Minister of North Macedonia, at Oliver Spasovski’s request, regarding the country’s ecclesiastical problem.

As the Ecumenical Patriarchate said in a statement, “The purpose of the visit was to examine the ecclesiastical problem of the country. The previous stages of the matter were discussed during the meeting.”

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, after the meeting with Prime Minister Oliver Spasovski and his predecessor Zoran Zaev -which took place in a particularly warm climate,- made the decision to invite both sides, the Serbian Orthodox Church, as well as the Church of Skopje, to a joint meeting, in an attempt to find a mutually acceptable solution to the country’s major ecclesiastical issue.

In the discussion the Ecumenical Patriarch was accompanied by the Metropolitans Emmanuel of France, Maximos of Silibria, Amfilochios of Adrianople, Archimandrite Ioakim and Deacon Gregorios, Chief Secretary and Under-secretary of the Holy and Great Synod respectively, and Archon Didaskalos of the Nation (Genous), Professor Konstantinos Delikonstantis, and Director of the First Patriarchal Office.


  1. Maybe this will push the rest of the Churches into going to Jordan next month? God’s Will be done 
    Bartholomew is hedging his bets that nothing will be done, and he hasn’t really suffered any real repercussions from Ukraine yet. You have to be thankful that our bishops nowadays weren’t around during the Arian Crisis 

  2. This is what happens when most of the other Churches sit in silence. This man is out of control. He should have been deposed long ago. After the tragic chaos that he created in Ukraine, only Russia opposed him with action.  In fact, one Patriarch and an Archbishop have actually joined Bartholomew’s circus! It breaks my heart that the one, holy, catholic and Apostolic Church has become indifferent. Silence continues to be an accessory to the crime.  This man has divided the entire Orthodox world (including Mt Athos)….and everyone sits on their hands. This is shameful.  I have been praying for a long time for God to send us another St. Mark of Ephesus…but I suppose we do not deserve him.

  3. St Paisios the Hagiorite:

    What unsettles me is the reigning mood of tranquility.

    Those who’ve in some way helped the cause of good will be rewarded, and those who do evil will be punished. God will put everyone in their place in the end, but each of us will answer for what they did in these difficult years, both in prayer and in deeds.

    Today they’re trying to destroy faith, and for the edifice of faith to fall they quietly pull out one stone, then another. But we’re all responsible for the destruction; not just those who destroy but we who see how faith is being undermined and make no effort to strengthen it.

    In our day it’s a true witness to speak up for one’s people, for the state is waging war against divine law. It’s laws are directed against the Law of God. But we are responsible for not letting the enemies of the Church corrupt everything. Though I’ve heard even priests say: “Don’t get involved in that. It’s none of your business!” If they had reached such a non-striving condition through prayer I would kiss their feet.

    But no! They’re indifferent because they want to please everyone and live in comfort. Indifference is unacceptable even for laymen, and all the more so for the clergy. An honest, spiritual man doesn’t do anything with indifference.

    The spirit of lukewarmness reigns. There’s no manliness at all! We’ve been spoiled for good! How does God still tolerate us? Today’s generation is the generation of indifference.

    There are no warriors.

  4. I hate to say this, but there was a tyrant years ago with the initials A.H. He did things in small increments in order to climb to power. Eventually, he rose to the top and caused massive problems for the world. The current bishop of Istanbul kind of reminds me of A.H., though, minus the goose-stepping thingy.

    • Please; at least the Fuhrer had some principles.
      And people actually liked him.

      • Liked him? Eva Braun, perhaps.
        All the rest were afraid.
        Even Goering was scared of him.

        • George Michalopulos says

          Brendan, in order to set the record straight, when I was a young child, I actually knew adult Germans who were alive during his ascendancy and they absolutely adored him. In the 30s, it was the first manifestation of Beatlemania believe it or not.

          • ‘Adoration’ and ‘liking’ are not species of the same order. If you like someone you see yourself as to some extent on the same level. This is not the case if you adore him. Adoration and terror are not mutually exclusive.

          • Yes, George, exactly! A good friend of mine dated a woman of German descent years ago here in the USA, but quickly broke up with her because she, and her parents…thought that Adolf Hitler was just a ‘misunderstood’ man. They even had pictures of him on the wall in the family room.

      • I’m sorry…I forgot to put something in about ‘annexing’ territories, too! Just as A.H. annexed neighboring countries, the bishop of Istanbul is taking over other churches canonical territories.

  5. Godwin’s law (or Godwin’s rule of Hitler analogies) is an Internet adage asserting that “As an online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches 1

    • Ronda Wintheiser says

      And your point, Brendan, is exactly …  what?

      • Citing Hitler in arguments, as a comparison to those with whom you disagree, is an easy way of raising emotion and reducing reason.
        Godwin’s Law highlights this sad tendency in keyboard warriors.
        Let us answer for our sins and Hitler for his.

    • George Michalopulos says

      I ascribe to a variation of Godwin’s Law; called the Godwin-Warhol Observation.  Basically this states that in the future, everyone will be Hitler for 15 minutes.  

  6. Gail Sheppard says

    It seems anywhere corrupt nations are passing laws to confiscate property belonging to the canonical Church, you’ll find Bartholomew talking with politicians.  He then makes proclamations on behalf of the Church to which he no longer belongs, at least as far as 2/3s of the Church is concerned.  Fewer and fewer people recognize his authority or his actions, diptychs notwithstanding. 

    I saw where the OCA wrote a nice letter in support of the Serbian Church, which is the same thing as telling Bartholomew to back off in Montenegro, which of course he won’t even though he has insisted up to this point that he would NOT grant autocephaly there. The OCA has some chips to play because Bartholomew cannot risk all out rebellion with them here in the States.

    I’m glad the OCA is using what leverage they have on behalf of the Serbian Church. Serbia has been a strong voice for the canonical Church and the OCA is again signaling where they stand (more importantly, where they don’t).

    • George Michalopulos says

      Will this man ever stop meddling?

      • Will the Pope stop being a Roman Catholic George.??! 

        • George Michalopulos says

          No longer a rhetorical question, Niko.  It’s an open question whether Bergoglio is actually Roman Catholic.

          • Yes George, is Bart Orthodox, not even a question.   We live in strange days.    Any stirring out of Niketas in Uk???   I’m sure he is loving his greek cypriot flock!!!  Perhaps bart will visit.!?  Cheer the peasants up 

            • “Any stirring out of Niketas in Uk???”
              Nothing recent I am aware of. He has not been to Scotland.
              Perhaps, like Br’er Rabbit, he lays low an’ says nuthin’.

              • Brendan showing the son of bulgarian friends round London last autumn who spent five wonderful IF WET months, in Stirling at the university, with Stuart clan kilt to prove it,we started the tour with the greek Cathedral in Bayswater which Stanislav loved.  There we chatted to a priest,  could not seem to speak greek, had the ‘ new look’ two day stubble as a beard and rushed to inform us that the church had to be modern in music etc.  Yes, Wonderful I said as we left!!    God help u. But the greek cypriot community is perverse.  If they going to be Orthodox it’s going to be as they do it. Niketas will find the parishes very different to the wealthy ship ownership fraternity of St Sofia. 

            • Bartholomew is coming to the US in May. He will visit the President and attend graduation ceremonies at Hellenic College Holy Cross.

        • “Will the Pope stop being a Roman Catholic”?
          The present (un-emeritus) one seems to have,
          as Pachamama could testify if she would speak.

        • Tim R. Mortiss says

          I hope not, inasmuch as he isn’t about to become Orthodox.

      • “Will this man ever stop meddling?”
        Not while the batteries are in…

  7. jim of olym says

    You are old, Father Bart, the young man said…
    I think you know the rest.

  8. Greatly Saddened says

    Below please find an article from yesterday on the Orthodox Times website.
    Home > Orthodoxy > Ecumenical Patriarchate
    US Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom Sam Brownback visited Ecumenical Patriarchate
    Jan 17, 2020 | 19:02

  9. “On January 20, 2020, Patriarch Theodore of Alexandria congratulated the Head of the Coptic Church, Patriarch Tavadros II, on the Feast of the Epiphany and stated that the Alexandrian and Coptic Churches are a single Church led by Jesus Christ“.–koptskomu-patriarkhu-nashi-cerkvi–eto-odna-cerkovy
    Does the Primus Sine Paribus agree?

    • Brendan,
      “Does the Primus Sine Paribus agree?”
      Of course He agrees, for as long as he is the big boss.

  10. Greatly Saddened says

    Below please find an article from today in The National Herald.
    Ecumenical Patriarch: “We Reject the Phrase ‘There Is No Alternative’”
    By TNH Staff 
    January 28, 2020

    • ‘There Is No Alternative’
      This was one of Margaret Thatcher’s favourite sayings.
      Norman St John Stevas (one of her ministers)
      used the acronym and nicknamed her: TINA
      Sometimes he called her: The Leaderene
      But these were not what cost him his job.
      That came when he called her:
      “Margaret, The Immaculate Misconception”.

  11. Greatly Saddened says

    Below please find an article from yesterday on the Orthodox Times website.
    Home > Orthodoxy > Ecumenical Patriarchate
    Ecumenical Patriarch: First of all we are Orthodox and then Greeks, Russians, Ukrainians
    Feb 09, 2020 | 16:54

    • GS
      “Ecumenical Patriarch: First of all we are Orthodox and then Greeks, Russians, Ukrainians”
      He probably means:

      “First of all we are children of the Mother Church and then Greeks, Russians, Ukrainians”

  12. Greatly Saddened says

    Below please find an article from today in The National Herald.
    “Return” of Last Dean of Theological School of Halki
    By TNH Staff 
    February 11, 2020

  13. Greatly Saddened says

    Below please find an article from today in The National Herald.
    Only Ecumenical Patriarch Expresses the Ecumenicity of Orthodoxy
    By TNH Staff 
    February 12, 2020

  14. Greatly Saddened says

    Below please find an article from today on the Orthodox Times website.
    Home > Orthodoxy > Patriarchates > Patriarchate of Romania
    Delegation of the Patriarchate of Romania in Amman (upd)
    Feb 14, 2020 | 09:57

  15. Greatly Saddened says

    Below please find an article from today in The National Herald. Unfortunately, the article is locked and doesn’t appear in its entirety. I will continue to be on the lookout for the article in its entirety, and if found, I will post.
    Analysis: Theophilos and the Smashing of Orthodoxy
    By Theodore Kalmoukos 
    February 15, 2020

  16. Greatly Saddened says

    Below please find an article from yesterday on the Orthodox Times website.
    Home > Orthodoxy > Patriarchates > Patriarchate of Jerusalem
    Patriarchate of Jerusalem: Amman gathering does not constitute formal Synaxis
    Feb 16, 2020 | 17:00

  17. Greatly Saddened says

    Below please find an article from today in The National Herald.
    Patriarch Theophilos of Jerusalem Sent Representatives to Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew
    By Theodore Kalmoukos 
    February 18, 2020

  18. Greatly Saddened says

    Below please find a “Letter to the Editor” from yesterday in The National Herald, by Theodore G. Karakostas of Boston, MA.
    In Response to Kalmoukos’ Analysis
    February 18, 2020