Statement of the Metropolitan Concerning the Council in Crete
A Statement by His Eminence, Metropolitan Silouan of the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of the British Isles and Ireland concerning the Council in Crete (23rd June 2016):
The representatives of the Council of Churches in Crete insist on twisting the facts relating to the position of the Patriarchate of Antioch regarding this Council.
Following the misleading allegation that the Patriarchate of Antioch signed the decisions of the Chambesy Convocation of the hierarchs of the Orthodox Churches in January 2016 – the falsehood of which is proved by the indisputable documentation we now see – another declaration which is devoid of exactitude and departs from the truth. We note that the Church of Antioch did not restrict itself only to not signing but also declared in writing that it would not sign as it could not agree with the decisions of the Convocation. Yet, we now see another declaration which is devoid of exactitude and defies once again the truth.
The concern of the Church of Antioch in this matter is to clarify that it refrained from signing the decisions of the Convocation of 2016, those relating to the Rules of Procedure of the Council and documents about marriage and obstacles to marriage.
By the decision of the Holy Synod of the Patriarchate of Antioch it is expressed clearly that the Church of Antioch participated in a spirit of “economy” in the preparatory work while awaiting the solution of all outstanding issues, including those that concern the eucharistic character of the conciliar opus. These points are overlooked by the representatives of the media of the meeting in Crete. Thus are ignored the significance and the consequences to Orthodox conciliarity which cannot be maintained beyond the sphere of the Eucharist.
The Church of Antioch reminds those who have not yet realised that the Antiochian representatives in all the above mentioned convocations emphasised from the inauguration of conciliar deliberations that their participation by no means implied the acceptance of decisions of the Convocations of 2014 and 2016. This participation was intended to facilitate the preparatory work in the wake of the awaited consensus in all subjects according to the Tradition and the Canons. It was believed that these were to be followed from the start of the preparatory procedures for the Great Council.