The Episcopal Assembly has a website…

…and a new logo too. See Episcopal Assembly.

But more interesting is this news from the Orthodox Christian Fellowship of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia.

On the occasion of the Episcopal Assembly of all canonical Orthodox Bishops of Oceania and Asia, which will take place in Sydney from 16th-18th October 2010, there will be on Sunday 17th october 2010, from 7:30 am in the Cathedral of the Church of the Annunciation of the Theotokos, Redfern, a concelebration of the Divine Liturgy, presided by His Eminences Hierarchs Paul of the Antiochian Church, Agapit of the Russian, Irinej of the Serbian, Michael of the Romanian, Their Eminences Metropolitans Amphilochios of New Zealand, Ambrosios of Korea, Nectarios of Hong Kong, and Their Graces Assistant Bishops Ezekiel of Dervis, Seraphim of Apollonias and Nikandros of Dorylaion, assisted by Priests of all jurisdictions.


  1. George Michalopulos :

    I’ve got to hand it to the Aussies, that’s a fantastic looking logo. I know in many ways they’re even more ethno-retrograde than those of us here in America, but their design will prove to be a blessing. If nothing else, it shows (unwittingly perhaps) where their true political allegiance lies.

  2. Yeah…between the name “Episcopal Assembly” and the logo, we could really be mistaken for Episcopalians couldn’t we?

    I think they should have used ours…from the Facebook site. We’d have rented it to them..LOL

    The Australian image is question about it. Someone did some nice work with that one….must have been laity!

    I’ll be interested to hear the results from down under…have a couple of emails out to folks on the ground down there.

    Best Regards,

    PS there’s a striking lack of content on that Episcopal Assembly website. Let’s see…five months and they’ve managed to post the notice that went out the first day…and absolutely NOTHING else?

  3. The Communique of the “First Episcopal Assembly of all canonical Orthodox Bishops of Oceania” is now available at the Serbian-Austrialian diocesan website (

    It is interesting that the October 5 “Invitation” called people to the Episcopal Assembly of “Oceania and Asia” with metropolitans Ambrose of Korea and Nectarius of Hong Kong listed among the participants. What in fact took place was an Assembly for “Oceania” alone, with the above hierarchs not attending.

    This is in accordance with the Chambesy Decision, which left Asia out of discussion, and preordained an Episcopal Assembly only for the region of “Australia, New Zealand and Oceania” (

  4. George Michalopulos :

    So Ilya, what’s the upshot of this? More chicanery or just the typical ineptness that we’ve long come to expect?

    I’ve always wondered about Hong Kong. Now that it’s part of China proper, doesn’t it fall under the omorphor of the autonomous Chinese Orthodox Church? I’m sure that the Chinese gov’t will never want a foreign bishop (read: Istanbul) having jurisdiction over a diocese within its political borders.

    • As a historian, I have to catch myself from going too far in theorizing when it comes to dealing with real-time events. If with 100-year old documents you have the luxury of archives, diaries and memoirs of all sorts, which help make the picture come into focus, with real-time events we only see the tip of an iceberg.

      However, if I were to hazard a guess, there was a plan to get Asia represented, but it was going to be a lopsided representation – only the Greek Metropolitans Ambrose and Nectarius are listed in the “Invitation”. This left out the Japanese hierarchs – Metropolitan of Tokyo Daniel and Bishop of Sendai Seraphim, the only current native Asian bishops in our Church. Perhaps they couldn’t come for their own reasons – I know that at this very time there is in Japan a significant celebration of the 40-year anniversary of the Japanese Church’s autonomy, which has been long in preparation, so the Japanese hierarchs may have been unprepared to cancel their plans in favor of this Assembly. But, no doubt, part of the difficulty was the 1970 autonomy itself (granted to Japan by Moscow simultaneously with the OCA autocephaly) – since then Constantinople doesn’t deal with the Japanese because it doesn’t recognize the validity of their autonomy, even though there are no “Constantinopolitan” parishes in Japan. The Romanian Church has also recently chosen to ignore the Japanese Church, and unilaterally set up two parishes for Romanians in Japan. But Moscow upholds the Japanese Church’s authority and the overwhelming majority of Orthodox in Japan are jurisdictionally united. In other words, there is still hope that Japan won’t go the way of the rest of the “diaspora” world, where parallel jurisdictions have sprung up, but will persevere as a genuine local Church. With this issue unresolved, it proved more conciliatory to follow the Chambesy decision and restrict matters to “Oceania”, where the jurisdicitional setup is much the same as in Western Europe, – i.e. with no serious claimant to being the sole native Orthodox Church.

      As for China – if Sino-Russian relations progress well, than the restoration of the cadre of native Chinese clergy is probably a matter of near future, since a number of Chinese Orthodox for some time have been studying theology and desirous to get ordained. However, this much has been said for a few years now, so maybe things aren’t as promising. Meanwhile, there are no Constantinopolitan parishes in China except for Hong-Kong and Macau – and these two spots, as far as I know, are still special, being governed by distinctive liberal laws. The Chinese state tolerates broader religious diversity in these areas, but I doubt that Constantinople’s jurisdiction would at present be permitted in China proper.

      • George Michalopulos :

        Thank you Ilya for this fascinating analysis. My hope is that the native intransigence of the Chinese govt will actually work hand-in-hand with the traditionalist understanding of Orthodox canon law. As for the two Romanian parishes in Japan, I have a feeling that they will be brought to heel eventually.

  5. Sorry, I am yet to hear anything about the Assembly or a report on it.

    By the way, that logo is not the official one of the Assembly, I found it on the Serbian diocese website.

    And it’s the “Orthodox Christian Fellowship of the University of New South Wales” not “Orthodox Christian Fellowship of South Wales” 🙂

    Pandelis Toumbelekis

    President – Orthodox Christian Fellowship of the University of New South Wales

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