The North American Holy Synod: Sobor, May 2002

From left to right:  Former Bishop Christopher; Former Deacon Gene; Former Bishop Cassian; Metropolitan Victor; Archbishop Peter; Bishop-Abbot Cyril (retired); Bishop Arthur. Not pictured; Bishop George, Bishop Andrew and Chorepiscopus Robert.

The Holy Eastern Orthodox Catholic and Apostolic Church in North America held their 2002 Sobor in New England May 17-19, 2002.

Bishops who were present included Metropolitan Victor of Arkansas, Fmr. Bishop Christopher of Texas, Bishop Arthur of Michigan, Fmr. Bishop Cassian of Ohio and Bishop Abbot Cyril (of blessed memory) of St. Pachomius Monastery. Bishops not present were Bishops Lawrence (of blessed memory) who recently retired due to poor health and George, Fmr. Chorepiscopus Robert of Arizona and Bp. Andrew. The Sobor was hosted by Archbishop Peter at St. Nicholas of Myra Cathedral.

The bishops of this canonically established Church follow the Sacred and Divine Canons of the Orthodox Church and profess the three confessions of faith when they are consecrated. Although we are not in formal communion with the Ecumenical Patriarch we have clergy who are recognized as canonical and who share the altar with SCOBA clergy.

Archbishop Peter is seventh in line from Saint Gregorios of the Church of the East. Metropolitan Archbishop +Victor is eighth in line from Saint Gregorios of the Church of the East as well as sixth in line from Archbishop +Aftimios.

Our Church is celebrating its 75th Anniversary in this year of 2002 and seventy five years of American Orthodoxy within its rightful jurisdiction. The Holy Eastern Orthodox Catholic and Apostolic Church in North America was founded in 1927 by the Synod of Russian Bishops outside of Russia with the blessings of the Russian Patriarch +Tikhon. The first Archbishop was +Aftimios Ofeish, a Syrian Orthodox Bishop of Brooklyn. It has continued quietly to serve its rightful jurisdiction despite the scourge of Communism, the Second World War, and the Cold War. The Church has survived through a spirit of altruism and highest spirituality and careful avoidance of political issues which have so schismed the Orthodox jurisdictions in America. Its members are small congregations in areas of high poverty and crime. We also have several consecrated hermits within our Church who are Hesychasts and in solitude meditate day and night on the Name of Jesus Christ.

The American Orthodox Catholic Church is a canonically established Metropolitanate and is a traditional Eastern Orthodox Church. It holds itself open to communicants to all the Orthodox family of Churches still united in faith and love throughout the world and throughout the centuries.

Any mandate issued by the synod on or before May 19th, 2002 and not used by May 19, 2002 by the North American Holy Synod are null and void. Anyone consecrating or ordaining after this date does so without the authority and jurisdiction of this Church and Synod.

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