The conflict of the Russian Orthodox Church with Constantinople could last decades, said the expert

© RIA Novosti / Maxim to Aminopherase in fotomasterov of the Prophet Elijah (Elias) in Suzdal. Archival photoThe conflict of the Russian Orthodox Church with Constantinople could last decades, said the expert© RIA Novosti / Maxim to Aminopherase the image Bank

The crisis in relations between the Russian and Constantinople churches can drag on indefinitely, as the decision of the question of autocephaly for Ukraine, told RIA Novosti member of the Synodal biblical-theological Commission of the ROC, a political scientist Arkady Maler, commenting on the outcome of Friday’s meeting of the Russian Synod.

The Synod of the Russian Church on Friday went to the actual «break diplomatic relations» with the Patriarchate of Constantinople, after he was appointed its Exarch to Ukraine is a canonical territory of the Moscow Patriarchate. In particular, it decided to cease commemoration of the Patriarch of Constantinople Bartholomew I during the Patriarch’s divine services in and out of structures, where preside the representatives of the Patriarchate of Constantinople. Relations of the Russian Church with Constantinople was in this crisis only once in all its more than 1000-year history.

«They (Constantinople) can proceed infinitely to postpone Tomos (decision on the granting of autocephaly), to keep us all the time in sight, to wage a war of nerves, we are not going to communicate with them, this can go on indefinitely. Such splits can last for decades,» — said the expert.

«We, of course, restore the relationship with them only when they will withdraw their exarchs and officially declared that is not going to grant autocephaly,» added Mahler.

He called «a very serious gesture» the decision of the Synod to cease commemoration of the Patriarch of Constantinople in religious services, although secular people, it may seem «complete nonsense». The ban on joint prayers of the hierarchs of the two churches, and a veto on participation in any activities involving Constantinople, Mahler described as «Pomorska» and the actual gap of all possible relations.

«The only thing that remains is the right for our laity to take communion in their churches and Vice versa. But this right they will lose as soon as Bartholomew will give Tomos,» added the analyst.

The situation, he believes a natural result of the fact that the Russian Church «showed leniency» and chose not to see the creation in 2008 of the two dioceses of the Constantinople Patriarchate on the territory of Estonia, the canonical territory of Moscow. Decision today to Constantinople will react in an offended tone, said the Agency interlocutor.

«For them it is a very serious situation, although their position may seem indifferent. They hate it, they don’t want half of the whole Orthodox flock of the world (the parishioners of the Russian Church) did not communicate with them. They are insulted, but they started this war. Since they’re not really independent, since for them there is the American lobby, they will listen to them and they will try to go as clean as possible from this game», concluded Mahler.

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