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Bishop Savva of Zelenograd commented on the events in the Latvian Orthodox Church

The Deputy Head of the Moscow Patriarchate, Bishop Savva (Tutunov) of Zelenograd, commented on the events in the Latvian Orthodox Church on his own Telegram channel.

“According to the Charter of the Russian Orthodox Church, “Bishops of the Self-Governing Church are elected by the Synod from candidates approved by the Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia and the Holy Synod.” Unfortunately, this procedure was not followed, since the candidates were not submitted for approval to His Holiness the Patriarch and the Holy Synod. This gross violation of the Charter, which conflicts with the desire to preserve church unity,” the hierarch noted.

He recalled that in his report at the Bishops’ Conference on July 19, 2023, Patriarch Kirill emphasized that the secular authorities of Latvia, inspired by the situation with their neighbors, that is, in Lithuania and Estonia, where the authorities put pressure on local bishops, “decided to go even further and themselves proclaimed the false autocephaly of the Church of Latvia. Perhaps the Phanar would not have thought of such a thing, although it is precisely his example of violating canonical truth that the new persecutors of Orthodoxy imitate.”

Bishop Savva noted that at the same time, the Council of the Latvian Orthodox Church “acted correctly by submitting a request for autocephaly to the Hierarchy of the Moscow Patriarchate. As such, the canonical situation remained unchanged – this was emphasized by the fact that the Council of the Latvian Church asked His Holiness the Patriarch to continue to issue Holy Chrism to the Latvian bishops.

“Alas, the current actions of the bishops of the Latvian Orthodox Church are in conflict with the position of the Council of this Church, cause extreme concern and are not aimed at preserving the God-commanded unity of the Church,” the ROC bishop emphasized.

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