Ecumenism & Church Leaders


I am wondering what is the position of the patriarchs and bishops with regards to that ecumenical movement. I have heard disturbing reports that the leaders of our church are fanatical in wanting a union with pope and other religions. This really shocks but doesn’t surprise me. They know very well that the only chance for unity will come if the heretics come back to the orthodox church. This will not happen so why are they wasting their time?!

I remember the words of St. Kosmas and Neilos about clergymen that most will be totally ignorant of what is right and wrong in the last days. This is apparently being fulfilled now. Can you shed some light on this as to the current situation of this.

Also could you tell me when the book Be watchful that no one decieves you by Priestmonk Christodoulos will come out if you’ve heard of it. He wrote a book on Elder Paisios already. This new book is on what will happen in the future based on the writings of Paisios and others.


I might begin by stating that there are a lot of rumors circulating on this issue, not the least of which is the rumor that the leaders of the Orthodox Church are fanatical in wanting a union with the Pope! No where has such a decision ever been made, and even a quick study of documents related to this matter produced by recent meetings, consultations and the like do not lend much credence to this. While we do pray “for the holy churches of God and the union of all”—we must be committed to fulfilling the prayer of Our Lord on the eve of His death, “That all may be one”—we see it in light of others reconciling and reuniting themselves to the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church which we profess to be in the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed.

I invite you to look at the article by our Chancellor, Protopresbyter Robert Kondratick, on “good” and “wrong” ecumenism (The Orthodox Church, October/November 1998) which will shed some light on the kind of ecumenism Orthodoxy embraces and the kind of ecumenism Orthodoxy condemns. The basic line of thinking is that if, in inter-faith gatherings and forums, Orthodox participate, it is for the purpose of bearing witness to the truth and fullness of faith. We cannot bring back into the fullness of the truth those with whom we refuse to speak.

One thing I would strongly advise is that, in terms of ecumenism, you take much of what you read with a grain of salt. So much is misinterpreted when reported in the secular press. One needs to pray for the gift to discern what is accurate and what is not, to discern what is said in the spirit of truth and what is said in the spirit of deceit.

Concerning the book by Priestmonk Christodoulos, I have never heard of it, so I am uncertain as to when it will be published.