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THEOCACNA


Statement

Orthodox lines of Apostolic Succession remain in the Orthodox Church that ordained the deacon, priest or bishop. When they leave they leave all authority to act for that Church or to pass on Orthodox sacraments.

This is the one and only Church that was canonically chartered by the Russian Synod of Bishops in North America in 1927. Archbishop Aftimios Ofiesh was appointed first Archbishop of this Church by the Synod and our Charter and Constitution were provided by the Russian Synod. Archbishop Ofiesh incorporated the Church in 1928 as a legal entity. We continue as that same Church today.

No church, jurisdiction, priest or bishop who is not an active member of this original American Orthodox Catholic Church (our short name as stated in the 1927 Church Constitution) who claims to be us under one of our names, a close name or a completely different name is a liar. They have no lines from this Church! They have no authority from this church! They have no sacramental authority from this Church and they are most likely Old Catholic/Episcopi Vagants claiming to be orthodox.

Some independents use our short name "American Orthodox Catholic Church" and one even ordains women. Some claim to be in the Aftimios or Ofiesh tradition.

This Church is the first American Orthodox Catholic Church established for the English speaking Orthodox in the "new world" and we are in our rightful jurisdiction. We are not in schism with the ethnic orthodox. They created the Schism against this Church in 1929.

Regarding Ignatius Nichols

The above was added and the following is the original text.

Truth about this Church to respond to lies and false information circulated about us.

We are the original Church - and original corporation. There are a number of liars in the independent movement who claim to be us, claim to have our lines, and who claim that the 1927 Charter issued to us by the Russian Orthodox Synod (Moscow Patriarchate) is theirs. By visiting our website you can see documentation of who we are and many legal documents and letters proving who we are. We have a court judgment from 2004 for defamation in the name of the Church. We have a letter from a Roman Catholic diocese posted and below the letter we mention one of the former clergy was accepted into the Episcopal Church (Anglican Communion) without re-ordination. Such claims by independents would be hard to prove. Ours are simple to prove.

1. THEOCACNA was canonically established, chartered in 1927

2. We continue today as the same canonically established Church

3. We are Orthodox

a. Mainly Western Rite

b. Also offer Eastern Rite services as shown on the website

c. We follow Holy Scripture, Orthodox Canons (Rudder) and Orthodox Tradition.

4. We are an 80 year old Church and next year will be an 80 year old Church corporation that has never ceased to exist.

note: From the Church files FYI -

Archbishop Ofiesh of Blessed Memory never fully retired and remained the head of this Church until his death in 1966.

Bp. Sophronius reportedly died in 1934 and later it was claimed to be in 1940. He actually died in 1940.

Bp. Ignatius left in 1934, married and became a protestant pastor. All acts he preformed later were without a mandate or the approval of this Church. He acted as an independent bishop after leaving this Church and those acts were not done with our lines of Apostolic Succession according to Orthodox canons and traditions.

Bp. Zuk left in 1933 to head the Ukrainian Church and died shortly after.

The only Synod member to survive any length of time was Archbishop Ofiesh. We view the facts as this.

Others claim Abp. Ofiesh acted contrary to the canons and wanted a tribunal to clear his name of the unfounded charges but it was never called.

No synod could canonically act against him without the tribunal. Therefore, no decree could be canonically issued against him.

Abp. Ofiesh claimed, in the newspapers, that GOD TOLD HIM TO MARRY! No synod, especially without the tribunal, could deny his claim without confronting him. Since Holy Scripture states a Bishop could and should marry and the Canons are man made Church law without a tribunal Abp. Aftimios Ofiesh of Blessed Memory was not outside the Church, deposed or excommunicated after his marriage or at the time of his death.

Abp. Ofiesh did not violate the canons when he married. He violated the canons only as they pertained to other ethnic orthodox jurisdictions who had adopted the canon of celibate bishops. As the Orthodox priest Stanley Harakas writes in "The Orthodox Church: 455 Questions and Answers" not all Orthodox Churches adopted that canon and it can be changed at anytime. According to the writers on Orthodoxwiki Bishops Joseph and Ignatius stated that the canon on married bishops was a Euopean and Asiatic canon that had no bearing on the American Church. Bishop Sophronius congratulated Abp. Ofiesha and his bride on their marriage.

No Synod or Patriarch could canonically take over this Church or close it down since it was Chartered by the Synod with Patriarchal approval, and the Charter and constitution were approved by Abp. Platon, later Patriarch of the Russian Orthodox Church (Moscow).

Continued defamation of this Church and clergy, living and dead, must cease. Continued attacks only prove how unchristian the Ecumenical Patriarch is today to allow such attacks and to show he has no intention of correcting or ending the Schism his predecessor caused.

Archbishop Victor,

By Father Paul, Secretary,

for the North American Holy Synod
American Orthodox Patriarchate (2003)
Corporate name:
The Holy Eastern Orthodox Catholic and
Apostolic Church in North America, Inc.
[Chartered Feb. 2, 1927]
Short name:
American Orthodox Catholic Church