It’s with a heavy heart that we inform our readers, writers, and Patrons around the planet that, on January 31, 2019, we will suspend publication of Orthodoxy in Dialogue until further notice. We hope that this will turn out to be no more than a relatively short-term hiatus.

Please note that:

  1. You have until the last week of January to submit your manuscript if you’ve communicated with us about writing something.
  2. Orthodoxy in Dialogue will remain online and fully accessible.
  3. We will continue to respond to emails sent to editors@orthodoxyindialogue.com.
  4. On rare occasion we may decide to publish something that seems extremely important.

Accept our profound thanks for the enormous interest and support that have been shown over the past seventeen months. Read More



The Holy Synod of the Orthodox Church in America

On December 16, 2018 we published Ukrainian Autocephaly: An Awkward Spot for the OCA, which quickly became one of our most popular, most shared, most discussed articles of all time. It sits currently in the top 2% of over 500 articles.

On January 7, 2019 we reached out to the Chancery of the OCA with the following questions:

  1. Does the OCA recognize the autocephaly of the OCU [Orthodox Church of Ukraine]?
  2. Has the Metropolitan begun, or does he intend to begin, commemorating Metropolitan Epiphanius of Kyiv and All Ukraine, liturgically/publicly in the diptychs, as the Primate of an autocephalous Church?
  3. If “no” to 1 and/or 2, is the OCA at least in communion with the OCU as well as the newly renamed ROCU [the Russian Orthodox Church in Ukraine, until recently known as the Ukrainian Orthodox Church-Moscow Patriarchate]?

Read More


Shortly after our Moscow’s “Schism” No More than a Publicity Stunt? went to press earlier today, one of our readers brought the following brief report to our attention. It serves not only to confirm our impression that Moscow’s “schism worse than 1054” is no more than a publicity stunt, but Patriarch Kirill’s reference to St. Panteleimon’s as “our” monastery chillingly reinforces Moscow’s oft repeated conceit that Russian-speakers anywhere in the world fall somehow under its “protection”—even though Mount Athos in its entirety lies within the immediate, direct jurisdiction of the Ecumenical Patriarch.

Patriarch Kirill of Moscow

During the clergy meeting of the Diocese of Moscow which took place on December 21, 2018 in Christ the Saviour Cathedral’s Hall of Councils in Moscow, a priest asked Patriarch Kirill if it was possible or not for him to commune on Mount Athos.

Let us recall that the Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church had decided to forbid the laity to commune in churches dependent on Constantinople.

The Patriarch responded to the priest that St. Panteleimon’s Monastery Read More



Archbishop Gabriel of Montreal (ROCOR)

This year the annual youth retreat of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia (ROCOR) took place on December 23-27, 2018 at the Nativity of the Mother of God Church in Albany NY. This event is hosted by the St. Herman Conference, under the chairmanship of Archbishop Gabriel of Montreal, to coincide every year with the Feast of St. Herman of Alaska on the old calendar.

A teenage attendee reports to Orthodoxy in Dialogue that, during a Q&A with Archbishop Gabriel, the young people raised questions about the Moscow Patriarchate’s decision to break communion with the Ecumenical Patriarchate—a decision explicitly ratified by ROCOR in its statement of October 18, 2018.

According to our young friend, Archbishop Gabriel made the following points in his response:

  1. A blessing to receive Holy Communion in an Ecumenical Patriarchate parish can always be requested by—and granted to—members of ROCOR.
  2. A blessing will most assuredly be granted to men in ROCOR who wish to visit and take Holy Communion on Mount Athos.
  3. A blessing will most assuredly be granted also to members of ROCOR who wish to visit and take Holy Communion at St. Anthony’s Monastery in Arizona as well as at any of the other Ephraimite monasteries in the US and Canada.

This is astonishing on a number of counts: Read More


pjimage (22)

Father John Parker (L), Father Josiah Trenham (R)

One of the more interesting items on the program for the IOTA conference earlier this month in Iaşi was the abstract for Father John Parker’s paper, “Radechesis: A Radical Return to the Roots of Christian Catechesis.” 

In it, he singles out Father Josiah Trenham as a model catechist for our day.

Orthodoxy in Dialogue’s readers will recall that Fathers Parker and Trenham have a shared mission to travel the world preaching a “Gospel” of queer bashing.

To the best of our knowledge, though, Father Trenham alone has earned the distinction of coming to the attention of the Hatewatch Staff (the Hatewatch Staff!) at the Southern Poverty Law Center. Read More


Orthodoxy in Dialogue offers Father Plekon’s timely reflection in observance of the upcoming Martin Luther King Jr. Day, which falls on the third Monday of January (January 21 this year) in the United States.


We are still early in the new year. It’s only the middle of January. Many have resolutions fresh in their minds, with determination to do good things in the year stretching out before us. For some, it is regular exercise, better diet, more mindfulness, care about our inner lives. For others, there is the hope of being more attentive to those around us, from family to friends near and far, and to our neighbors—on the block and throughout the community. People support families and children all over through United Way, through local groups that enable us to share our abundance with those in need. My friend, Father Justin Mathews, and his parish have continued the work of his predecessor, Father Paisos Altschul, at Reconciliation Services in Kansas City. St. Gregory of Nyssa Episcopal Church in San Francisco has been feeding people for years. Bethesda UMC Church in Haws Creek NC has numerous community service groups occupyings its building all week long. Despite so much rancor and division across the country, people are doing good. Consider the myriad of grassroots programs to assist government workers not being paid, with food, medications, childcare, and more.

Historian Jon Meacham recently published a timely book, The Soul of America: The Battle for Our Better Angels. The “better angels” in the subtitle comes from Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg address: Read More


At Orthodoxy in Dialogue we are thankful to God that the newly autocephalous Orthodox Church of Ukraine and the Ukrainian Greek-Catholic Church seek friendly relations and cooperation where appropriate. At the same time we dismiss the rumour that the OCU envisions entering into “double communion” with the Orthodox Church and Rome.

His Beatitude Epiphanius of the OCU (L) and His Beatitude Sviatoslav of the UGCC (R)

On the morning of January 17, 2019 in the Golden Gates Hall of the InterContinental Hotel there took place a presentation of the book Dialogue Heals Wounds, by the head of the Ukrainian Greek-Catholic Church (UGCC), His Beatitude Sviatoslav.

At the invitation of His Beatitude Sviatoslav, the primate of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine, Metropolitan Epiphanius, attended the presentation.

Leaders and moderators of the presentation were His Beatitude Vladyka Sviatoslav himself and Mr. Mykola Kniazhytsky, head of the Verkhovna Rada’s Committee on Culture and Spirituality. [Verkhovna Rada = Ukraine’s Parliament.]

In attendance at the presentation were President Petro Poroshenko of Ukraine, [several other government officials], Canadian ambassador to Ukraine Roman Washchuk, Polish ambassador to Ukraine Jan Pieklo, singer and composer Sviatoslav Vakarchuk, writers Oksana Zabuzhko and Ivan Malkovych, Ukrainian politicians, and other honoured guests.    Read More


For context glance over Archdiocese/Exarchate to Be Abolished (11/28/18), It’s Official: Ecumenical Patriarchate Dissolves Russian Archdiocese of Western Europe (11/28/18), Rue Daru Responds: Communiqué of the Archdiocesan Council of the Russian Archdiocese of Western Europe (12/1/18), the latter part of A Way Out of the Orthodox Church’s Present Crisis (1/2/19), and The Choice Facing the Archdiocese of Russian Churches in Western Europe (1/14/19).

Communiqué of the Archdiocesan Council – January 17, 2019

In recent days numerous priests and deacons of the Archdiocese have received a letter from the Greek metropolitan of the country where they reside, ordering them to cease commemorating their own Archbishop, to join the clergy of the Greek Metropolises, to consider that our parishes and communities are already part of these Metropolises, and finally ordering them to turn over all required documents and parish registries.

eglise-alexandre-nevsky (2)

On this subject the Archdiocesan Council refers to its communiqué of this past November 30 and offers some clarifications.

This intervention by outside bishops in the very body of our Archdiocese, even if bishops of the same Patriarchate, is irregular with regard to ecclesiology and the law: indeed, His Eminence, Archbishop John [Renneteau], is the only legitimate ruling bishop of the Orthodox Parishes of Russian Tradition in Western Europe. On March 28, 2016 he was elected in a regular manner by the extraordinary General Assembly of Archdiocese, composed of all the clergy and lay delegates from the parishes which make up our ecclesial body; on April 22, 1016 the Holy Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate ratified this election. From that very moment Archbishop John was installed in a definitive manner in his functions. Since then he has neither resigned nor requested retirement, and he remains—by the very definition of episcopal ministry—the instrument of the diocese’s catholicity, and the president of the Diocesan Union, the legal entity according to French law which assures the communion of all the parishes and communities of the Archdiocese. 
Read More