The next Holy Synod will determine the form of the presence of the Russian Orthodox Church in Africa. Earlier, several dozen priests of the Patriarchate of Alexandria appealed to Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia with a request to accept their parishes into the Russian Orthodox Church. This was stated by the Chairman of the Department for External Church Relations of the Moscow Patriarchate, Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk (Alfeev), according to the website of the DECR of the Russian Orthodox Church.
"The fact is that when the Patriarch of Alexandria joined the Patriarch of Constantinople and recognized the schismatic structure in Ukraine as the "Orthodox Church", remembered its leader at the divine service, it caused an internal split in the Church of Alexandria, which was to be expected. A number of priests who did not agree with this commemoration and with the recognition of the schism, appealed to us, namely to Patriarch Kirill, with a request to accept them into the Russian Orthodox Church," the hierarch said.
"Nevertheless, we took a pause, because we still hoped that this decision of the Patriarch of Alexandria was not irreversible, that he would come to his senses and reconsider it. Moreover, we have sent him signals about this: he knows that clerics have contacted us, he knows that we have suspended consideration of these appeals in order to be able to receive a signal from him about a change in position, but we have not received this signal. Moreover, in August of this year, Patriarch Theodore went to the island of Imvros – this is the place where Patriarch Bartholomew was born. There they performed a divine service together, in which the leader of the Ukrainian schismatics, Epiphany Dumenko, participated. From the point of view of church canons, if a hierarch concelebrates with a schismatic, he himself falls into a schism. Unfortunately, the church canons do not give us any other interpretation. And now, after this concelebration took place and Patriarch Theodore finally associated himself with the schism, we have no grounds and no opportunity to refuse such appeals," Metropolitan Hilarion said.
Photo: Oleg Varov, https://foto.patriarchia.ru/