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Abp Iakovos Falls Asleep in the Lord

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Written by Basil on 04/11/2005 4:49 PM. Filed under:

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Archbishop IakovosRecent converts may not recognize the name of his emminence Archbishop Iakovos (Jacob), but it was synonymous with the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of North and South America for several decades. That is, until he advocated uniting the jurisdictions of American Orthodoxy at a conference of 29 bishops at Ligonier, Pennsylvania, in 1994. At that point, he became the target of his all-holiness Patriarch Bartholomew‘s wrath, who forced him to resign in 1996.

Abp. Iakovos fell asleep in the Lord yesterday of a pulmonary ailment. It is perhaps understandable that the venerable website still has a photo of the Tome of Autocephaly. OK, it’s not really understandable at all, but the webmaster has amply demonstrated that nothing on that site is understandable any longer.

It would be interesting for the Orthodox Church in America to glorify Iakovos. I cannot imagine that the Ecumenical Patriarchate ever will.

In any case: Memory Eternal! (HT: A World of Speculation)

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11 Responses to “Abp Iakovos Falls Asleep in the Lord”

  1. matt Says:

    Memory Eternal!

    As I understand it, the OCA has a policy of not officially recognizing as Saints people in the other Orthodox churches. It would be an affront to the saint’s bishops. Also, they do not put Saints from other orthodox churches on the OCA calendar until that church asks them to do so.

  2. Paige Says:

    Matt, is that why St. John of Shanghai and San Francisco isn’t on the OCA calendar even though there are OCA churches and a monastery named after him? Are they waiting for ROCOR to email them or something? That one is beyond me. They’ve got his ancestor, the Russian bishop St. John Maximovitch, on there, but somehow they haven’t gotten around to including the 20th-century American saint. Yeesh.

  3. Josh Says:

    Memory Eternal!

  4. Jan Bear Says:

    As I understand it (and I may not understand it accurately) St. John Maximovitch precedes the hardening of the split between the Metropolia and what became ROCOR. Anyway, nobody’s trying to take ROCOR’s saintly bishop away. I hope St. John M. prays for our reconciliation.

  5. Matt Says:

    Paige, yes. That is the case. Hoever, the Moscow Patriarchate has just sent letters to other Orthodox Jurisdictions, including the OCA, on behalf of ROCOR, asking all jurisdictions to put the ROCOR Saints on their respective calendars.

  6. Paige Says:

    That still seems pretty odd. St. John has been on the GOA and Antiochian calendars for a while. What other saints qualify as ROCOR saints? I know ROCOR regards very highly, and was probably the first to glorify, Bishop NIKOLAI of Serbia, but he’s not exactly ROCOR.

    ROCOR has 20th-century saints from other jurisdictions on its calendar, and all the other jurisdictions have St. John on theirs, so if the OCA is trying to be polite they are the only ones doing so.

  7. Basil Says:

    I sent a question to Archpriest John Matusiak about this; I’ll let you know what he says.

  8. Basil Says:

    Fr John’s reply was essentially to state what Matt said earlier. He preferred I not quote him directly and paraphrase his reply.

    The glorification of saints gives a ritual blessing to the recognition of their sanctity by the faithful. It is usually the autocephalous church in which a person died which glorifies them (this brings to my mind the example of St Mary Skobtsova of Paris and her companions, glorified by the ecumencial patriarch, not Moscow). This often follows a period (sometimes long) of the perfectly legitimate recognition on a popular and informal level of someone as a saint (for which Fr. John used the example of St Herman of Alaska, who had been venerated for a very long time, especially by Alaskans, before his official glorification in 1970 by the newly autocephalous OCA). When the formal rite of glorification occurs, it is the custom for that church to notify the other autocephalous churches of the glorification. When no notification is made, the saint is considered by other churches to be a local saint, as it were. He noted that the popular veneration within the OCA of St John Maximovitch is quite appropriate and normal. However, the ROCOR did not sent letters proclaiming St John’s glorification to those churches with whom it was not in communion.

    To respond to Paige’s question, it seems to me that it is not so much a question of politeness as of good order and discipline.

    BTW, if it wasn’t obvious, I was speaking tongue in cheek in my off-the-cuff comment about glorifying his emminence. I hope it did not mar his memory in any way.

  9. A Sombra Says:

    GLORIFY Iakovos? Are you insane? The Orthodox Church does not “GLORIFY” heretics! Look at the life of Archbishop Iakovos; look at the things HE “glorified;” he was one of the most rabid ecumenists ever; he stated on more than one occasion thatthe Orthodox Church was not, simply, THE CHURCH OF CHRIST; he was a modernist in the extreme; he also went for the “Roman Catholic Church is a sister church to the Orthodox Church” nonsense! Glorify Iakovos? Why not Stalin and Rasputin while your at it?

  10. A Sombra Says:

    A BRIEF excerpt from Metropolitan Philaret’s
    “Open Letter to Archbishop Iakovos:”

    Your Eminence must be aware of the 45th Apostolic Canon which reads: “Let a bishop, presbyter, or deacon who has only prayed with heretics be excommunicated, but if he has permitted them to perform any clerical office, let him be deposed.” The renowned canonist Bishop Nikodim of Dalmatia, in his interpretation of this canon, remarks that participation in such a prayer with heterodox “… means that we not only do nothing for their conversion to Orthodoxy, but are wavering in it ourselves.”
    In this case Your Eminence has not only violated an ancient tradition of the Orthodox Church founded on canons (Apostolic 10 and 45, Laodicea 6, 32, and 33), but also in your actions and statements conforming to those of Patriarch Athenagoras, you have expressed a teaching foreign to the Fathers of our Church.
    In your sermon at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, you said that Church Unity should be understood as a call “that through such ecumenical practices and experiences as praying and working together we arrive at the full knowledge of the truth that frees the faithful from the sin of false and ungodly apprehensions.” The pathos in your sermon is not in proclaiming the truth of the Church, but in seeking something new, even a new definition “of our relationship with the Triune God.”
    The Holy Fathers, however, always regarded common public prayer as the culmination of the conversion of erring persons to the true Church—the achievement of it, not the means to it. Common church prayer is a manifestation of an already existing unity of faith and spirit. We cannot have such unity with those who teach otherwise than the Orthodox Church about the Holy Trinity (Filioque), the Mother of God (immaculate conception by Catholics, lack of veneration by Protestants), the hierarchy (Papism by the Roman Catholics; denial of the sacrament of priesthood by Protestants), etc. It is of further importance to note that the Roman Catholics and Protestants differ with us regarding the dogma of the Church.
    Orthodox ecclesiology has always been based on the understanding that there is only One Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church, and that schismatics, heretics, and persons of other religions are outside of Her. We therefore cannot accept the assertion of His Holiness Patriarch Athenagoras which was made in his Christmas Message of 1968 that, owing to a lack of love among brothers, “… the Church which was established by Christ to be glorious, without spot or wrinkle (Eph. v. 27), perfect and holy, was altered.” If our Church was altered and is not the same that was established by our Savior, then the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church against which Jesus Christ said “the gates of hell shall not prevail” (Matt. xvi. 18) exists no more, and instead there are several Churches, none of which is fully true and holy.

    I am still in shock that someone would be – I dont know what to say- ” ” enough (fill in the blank!) to even arrive at the thought of suggesting the Glorification of Archbishop Iakovos~ one would seemingly have to be completely and totally ignorant of just what Orthodoxy is, and what the Holy Orthodox Church believes! I know there are those who will be shocked atwhat I wrote, but, I am sorry, Orthodoxy is not like most American religion-it is not a “feel good cult” that you use to boost your self esteem for whatever comes in to your head! Archbishop Iakovos was more ANTI-Orthodox than he was Orthodox!
    I suppose Pariarch Athenagoras is next? Well,why not his pal Pope Paul VI alongiswed of him-the first “double glorification” of an Orthodox and a Roman Catholic – two “Popes” together! The Eastern Pope and the Western Pope! How nice! How sweet! How lovely! How very comforting and, oh, just so loving and ecumenical!

  11. A Sombra Says:

    Other “ROCOR” Saints….glorified by ROCOR …

    Saint John of Kronstadt-glorified 1964-MP later glorified Saint John
    Saint Herman of Alaska-glorified 1978-OCA glorified St Herman same year
    Saint Xenia of Petersburg-glorified 1978-MP later gloirifed Saint Xenia
    Holy New Martyrs & Confessors of Russia-glorified 1981-MP later gloirifed New Martyrs
    Saint Jonah of Manchuria-glorified 1996

    Also-cant remember the years-Saint Nicholas of Japan; Saint Innocent of Alaska; Saint Peter the Aleut; Saint Paisius
    Velichkovsky; Saint Maxim Sandovich……