With his letter to the Archbishop and the Holy Synod, the Metropolitan of Piraeus Seraphim poses the issue of departure by the Autocephalous Church of Greece from the “World Council of so-called Churches” as well as from all other dialogues with the heterodox, on account of the recent election of Mr. Demetrios Salahas as the new bishop of Greek Uniates, following the suggestion of the Pope of Rome, Benedict the 16th.
Obviously perceiving this specific development as a direct provocation against the Church of Greece, the prelate of Piraeus stressed that “this has revealed the unsightly face of Papism” and characteristically pointed out that “finally, the time has come to react against the attempted violation of the dignity of the Undivided Orthodox Catholic Church, which is what lapsed Rome is brazenly trying to do.”
Below is the unedited text of the Piraeus Metropolitan Seraphim’s letter, dated 23rd May 2008:
Following the recent election of the new Bishop of the Uniates of Greece upon the decision of the Pope of Rome Mr. Benedict the 16th, it is now verified beyond any naïve doubt that the heretic papist parasynagogue (conventicle) –as our memorable, late spiritual father the Archbishop Seraphim used to call it- has not in the least altered its atrocious stance against the Undivided Orthodox Catholic Church – from which it severed itself, only to be thereafter led to thousands of other downfalls – distorting purposely and methodically both the dogma and the polity and the ethos of the undivided Church.
The enthronement within Athens itself on the 24th of the preceding month of May this year of Mr. Demetrios Salahas as Bishop of the nonexistent “Uniates of Greece” has totally disposed of the mask of supposed “amiable relations” and the theory of “sister Churches”, to reveal the true, unsightly face of Papism, which has opportunely struck a blow to the truth of the Faith by persevering satanically in its intolerable malice.
Therefore I justifiably believe that we have a duty to re-evaluate (pursuant also to the disgraceful for the Undivided Orthodox Catholic Church text of Ravenna) our further participation as an Autocephalous Church – having been directly struck by ill-natured Rome – in the ongoing dialogues with it, and to simultaneously re-evaluate what our contribution is, within the mass of heretic offshoots of the universal Council of so-called “Churches”, as well as examine the usefulness or not of our participation in the other dialogues with the heterodox, because I’m afraid that the only thing that will be “achieved” is to provide their leaders with an alibi that supposedly proves their spiritual equivalence with the God-founded, Undivided Orthodox Catholic Church.
The election and enthronement of the new Uniate Bishop in Athens places each of us before his historic responsibilities, and I humbly believe that the time has finally come to react to the attempted violation of the dignity of the Undivided Orthodox Catholic Church, which is what “lapsed” Rome is brazenly trying to do. Of course you remember that tragic image that was presented by televised media, of the memorial service for Pope John Paul II of Rome, when a troupe of international Uniates chanted in Greek, for the obvious reason of displaying the ecumenicity of the papal throne, in the presence of Heads of Autocephalous Orthodox Churches.
This is why I am most respectfully suggesting that, upon a Decision of Yours, this extremely opportune matter be included in the topics to be discussed in the daily agenda of the convening, regular Synod of the Hierarchy in the coming October, with the profound and well-informed theologian and voluminous author and beloved in Christ brother, the Reverend Metropolitan of Nafpaktos and Saint Vlasios, fr. Hierotheos as proposed spokesman, who, it must be noted, has acquired no knowledge of our proposal.
With the above, I hereby submit my unfailing dedication to You, and remain,
With brotherly love and due honor,
The least in Christ brother
+Seraphim of Piraeus
Note.: For those who are unfamiliar with dogmatics, Uniates (from the word unita = unity) is the name given to the Orthodox Christians of the East who have accepted the dogmas of the Roman Catholic church and have united themselves to it, in compliance with the decisions of the Ferrara-Florence Council (1439). The heresy of Unia is accused of striving, with every possible means, for the union of the Christians of the East with the Western Church, if not for its full subservience to the Pope of Rome. There are Uniates in Greece, but numerically, they are very weak. Nevertheless, they preserve their autonomy with determination.