May 8, 2007
Holy Synod of Constantinople
Istanbul Rum Patrikligi,
You may know of our Church, our history and the problems connected with us over the years. We write to provide you with some information and mention some uncanonical and unchristian acts by SCOBA or ethnic orthodox clergy. What you do if anything is up to you. We also include a request.
In 2003 the North American Holy Synod voted and declared us to be the American Orthodox Patriarchate. We celebrated our 80th Anniversary last February. We are legally and morally the same Church we were when the Synod of Russian Bishops in North America under Abp. Platon Chartered us.
We do not seek membership in SCOBA nor do we seek communion with the Churches who have attacked us over the years and even attempted to replace us.. We do seek the same respect as any other Orthodox Church for our clergy.. When OCA and Antiochian clergy write about us and change history in an effort to make our clergy of blessed memory look stupid and uncanonical we will respond as they have a history of clergy violating the canons over the years which could make them and other Orthodox look bad.
An Example is that the Antiochian Church removed the remains of Bishop Sophronius and others from New York and had them all reburied in Antiochian Village in the State of Pennsylvania. Now clergy write to defame this good man that he "suspended the Archbishop" and a month later "deposed" another bishop. As you know the canons do not allow such acts - one bishop trying to over throw the synod. Since he remained friendly with the Archbishop it would seem unlikely he did any act against him as claimed. And this good bishop is buried near St Raphael. This is in connection with their continued attack on this canonically established Church!
It is not our place to point out errors in Orthodoxy which is not believed to be according to the canons or tradition but just error on the part of some Orthodox clergy but we will not follow suit.
We follow Holy Scripture, Orthodox Canons and Tradition... in that order when we must decide which is correct. We had an advisor and spiritual father who died of cancer about 2 years ago. He would help us when we had questions as he had the canons in Greek to help us - ours are an old English copy.
Our Church is Orthodox and recognized by the Catholics and Episcopalians and we are content. We use only the approved Liturgies in our services. They are available on our website at www.theocacna.org.
Our request is simple. We seek Christian charity, as we mentioned above, and ask for the same respect for our clergy, both living and deceased, as you expect and receive for not only your clergy but other Orthodox clergy. We believe the simple act of sending the word to your clergy as to how to refer to our clergy should an occasion arise will spread to other Orthodox clergy and could resolve our concern. As for the false information being written should you denounce such acts we believe this could also help resolve some issues and tensions.
On behalf of the North American Holy Synod,
American Orthodox Patriarchate
The Holy Eastern Orthodox Catholic and
Apostolic Church in North America