Was Abp. Aftimios deposed or excommunicated?

It has come to our attention that a rumor exists that claims that the Most Rev. Aftimios Ofiesh had been excommunicated because he married. We have never seen, as of this date, any such documentation to support this rumor. If, in fact, such a decree does exist we have determined that the acts of the late Archbishop Aftimios did not warrant such extreme action.

The Old World Churches had no canonical authority to to take such action since they refused to hold a Tribunal and since they had no canonical ties to this Church. The false claim that a bishop of this Church attempted to depose or excommunicate Abp. Aftimios and Bp. Ignatius would violate the canons that require a council or synod to act against a bishop (1 bishop may not depose or excommunicate another bishop).

This Church did not adopt the canon on married bishops therefore no canon of this Canonically established Orthodox Church was violated. The Antiochians, who would like to be able to claim they are the American Church, and the other scoba churches created a Schism in 1929 and prior to that they violated the canons in mistreating and attacking an Orthodox Church and its clergy. As Schismatics they have no canonical sacramential authority. Also since their Metropolitan and Patriarch allowed the canons they attack us over (a clergyman marrying after ordination and a married bishop) allowed one of their widowed clergy to remarry and remain a priest it seems that they have no right or justification to attack this Church today, but they do.

A similar rumor exists about Bishop Ignatius and is false.

Since it would violate the canons to have acted as rumored such a decree, as mentioned above, cannot canonically exist.

This Synod has determined that if any unknown decree existed or was issued by anyone it wold not be a canonical decree and this Synod, to put an end to such rumors, declares it has the only canonical authority and jurisdiction to lift and remove any such attempted decree.

Metropolitan Victor
Synod President