MP to formulate position on universal primacy
Russian Orthodox Church to formulate her position on universal primacy
Moscow, October 5, Interfax - The Russian Orthodox Church has launched a workgroup to formulate her position on universal primacy. This decision was made during a plenary meeting of the Doctrinal Commission held in the Department for External Church Relations.
The workgroup will be chaired by the DECR deputy head, Bishop Mark of Yegoryevsk, the Moscow Patriarchate�s official website reports.
The group is charged with a task to draft a document that would reflect the Russian Orthodox Church�s view of the universal primacy in the church. It is planned that this will be the main agenda point for the next plenary of the Doctrinal Commission in December 2007.
Unlike the Roman Catholic Church, the Orthodox do not have a universal primate or a supreme pontiff. They have a concept of a primus inter pares. Before 1054 such a position was ascribed to the bishop of Rome , and after the schism it was de facto held by the patriarch of Constantinople .
Yet many Orthodox Churches hold different views of Constantinople �s primacy and role. Some believe that this primacy is purely honorable while others ascribe to Constantinople a number of coordinating functions or see it as an ultimate court of appeal.
The issue of primacy of Rome and Constantinople will be discussed during the second meeting of the Joint Orthodox-Catholic Theological Commission that will be held in Ravenna , Italy , on October 9.
Earlier, the Head of the Representation of the Russian Orthodox Church to the European Institutions Bishop Hilarion of Vienna and Austria told Interfax that the Moscow Patriarchate will defend its own position in the dispute and there will be no compromise.
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