Romanian Patriarch commemorates primate of Macedonian Church as head of autocephalous Church

Romanian Patriarch commemorates primate of Macedonian Church as head of autocephalous Church

Bucharest, March 6, 2023

Trinitas TV screenshot     

The Patriarch of the Romanian Orthodox Church liturgically commemorated the Archbishop of the Macedonian Orthodox Church-Ohrid Archbishopric (MOC) on Sunday for the first time since the Romanian Synod resolved to recognize the canonicity and autocephaly of the MOC.

Meeting in Bucharest under the chairmanship of His Beatitude Patriarch Daniel on Romanian Church recognizes Macedonian-Ohrid autocephaly (updated)The autocephaly of the Macdonian CHurch is now recognized by the Churches of Russia, Poland, Ukraine, Bulgaria, and Romania, in addition to the Serbian Church.

“>February 9, the Holy Synod of the Romanian Church resolved:

To approve the recognition of the autocephaly granted to the Church in the Republic of North Macedonia under the name of “Archdiocese of Ohrid and North Macedonia, with headquarters in Skopje” by the Patriarchate of Serbia by its Synodal Tomos issued on June 5, 2022. Its Primate will be commemorated with the title “His Beatitude Archbishop Stefan of Ohrid, Skopje and North Macedonia.”

Accordingly, as can be seen in the video broadcast by the Romanian Orthodox Church’s Trinitas TV (at 2:02:10), after “Rastislav of Czechia and Slovakia,” Pat. Daniel commemorated “Stefan of Ohrid, Skopje, and North Macedonia” on Sunday.

The Macedonian outlet published a clip of the commemoration:

A few days after its initial statement about the recognition of the MOC, the Basilica News Agency published a follow-up report providing more details from the Synodal decision, explaining that the Romanian Synod recognizes the right of a Mother Church to grant autocephaly to its daughter Church [in this case, the Serbian Church to the Macedonian Church—OC], while recognition of that autocephaly belongs to the whole Church, eventually in the form of a tomos signed by all primates without distinction and issued by the Patriarchate of Constantinople.

Some outlets speculated that this second article from the Basilica News Agency showed the Romanian Church backtracking on its decision concerning the MOC, against the background of competing ecclesiologies in the Church about who has the right to grant autocephaly.

OrthoChristian was informed by the Basilica News Agency that the second article didn’t represent a change in direction or a new decision, but only provided more details from the initial Synodal decision of February 9.

And the Romanian Church’s recognition of MOC autocephaly was confirmed by Pat. Daniel’s commemoration of Abp. Stefan on Sunday.

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