The hierarch of the Georgian Orthodox Church in the diaspora, Archbishop of Dmanin and Agarak-Tashir, Great Britain and Ireland Zenon wrote condolences to Patriarch Theodore and the hierarchs of the Patriarchate of Alexandria. The letter is published by SFU.
The archbishop states that “in October 2021, the ROC, contrary to canonical rules, invaded the territory of the Georgian Church and therefore he understands the brothers from the Patriarchate of Alexandria, where the ROC did the same.”
“Personally, I understand your concern, since a similar decision to create the Yerevan-Armenian diocese was made by Moscow on October 15, 2021. They appointed Archbishop Leonid (Gorbachev) to manage this new diocese, the same archbishop whom they intend to send to the blessed African continent.
As I already mentioned, my diocese covers Agarak-Tashir (Akhtala), a 1600-year-old diocese in the region of Northern Armenia. Historically, when the Moscow Patriarchate did not yet exist, the modern northern part of Armenia was led by the bishops of the Catholicosate of Georgia.
At that time, the Chalcedonians living on the territory of Armenia were under the jurisdiction of these Georgian bishops. After the restoration of the autocephaly of the Georgian Church in 1917, by a decision of December 31, 1943, the Moscow Patriarchate recognized the Armenian Chalcedonians as members of the Georgian Church.
Regardless of this historical fact, as I have already said, the Russian Church nevertheless decided to appoint its exarch for the whole of Armenia… I suffered an invasion by the Russian Church into the historical territory of the Church of Georgia, which, by the grace of the Holy Spirit, was entrusted to me.
As one of the bishops, I carry sorrow with me and seek solutions in my thoughts, because there is no end to Russian anti-ecclesiological behavior against the political borders of Georgia and in general in the South Caucasus, where the jurisdiction of the Catholicosate of Georgia has historically existed, as well as against other Local Churches.
I would like to express my solidarity and prayers for the challenges you are facing right now, in return I would also like to ask for your support and prayers.
Let us pray for the Russian brother-bishops, so that the Holy Spirit would establish in them a good grain of peace and free the Church from the consequences of imperialist ideology,” writes Archbishop Zenon.
Earlier it was reported that this hierarch was involved in the Phanar’s attacks on the Georgian Church.