The Green Patriarch has landed

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew arrives at New Orleans’ Louis Armstrong Airport on October 20, 2009. He’s here for the RSE Symposium on the Mississippi. (HT on the video to Byzantine, TX)

The Patriarchal Private Jet

The Patriarchal Private Jet

A Patriotic Welcome

A Patriotic Welcome

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cZ6D80H-HTU[/youtube]

Comments

  1. If to “Sin against the environment is to Sin against God” …. then that private Jet qualifies as extremely sinful if you ask me. We now have a Green Patriarch who has a yacht and uses a Private Jet.

    And by the way, do kids greet Pope Benedict with German Flags when he arrives in the USA?

    On a sad note, not even good old Mayor Ray Nagin was there to Greet the EP.

  2. Fr. Johannes Jacobse :

    On the other hand, if carbon as a pollutant is questionable (and it certainly is), then there is no problem with a private jet. The flight from Greece to the USA can be grueling, especially the jet lag flying east. If someone offered me a loaner, I’d take it too. The man has a full schedule and about one day to recover from the trip. I think we should cut him a break.

    It would have been nice to see some USA flags though.

    • If carbon as a pollutant is questionable to the EP then why he making a
      big push for the upcoming Copenhagen conference and the the ratification of its proposals. If you ask me the EP buys into the Carbon as pollutant mumbo jumbo hook line and sinker.

      Sorry Father, but the Green Patriarch can’t float around on a yacht, fly on a private jet, and yuck it up on the Waldorf and then preach saving the environment.

      You know in the past I could tolerate the minimal use of the phrase “Green Patriarch” but if you look on the GOA’s press efforts online (twitter etc) you see the wholesale re-branding of the Ecumenical Patriarch as the Green Patriarch. This is disappointing because its a shift away from traditonal ministry and evangelization.

      • Fr. Johannes Jacobse :

        Yes, I get what you mean Andrew. But what else is new? Many in the environmental movement adopt the do as I say, not as I do attitude.

        More important is what you point out as the “re-branding.” Yes, it is disappointing, but more significant is the lending of authority to institutions like the United Nations, lobby groups like the Center for American Progress (CAP), and people like George Soros over such misguided policies like the Copenhagen Protocols.

        These decisions reveal the now routine confusion between moral and political authority and as a political calculation entails huge risks. For example, if implementation of the Copenhagen Protocols fails (which they probably will), or if Obama falls and CAP becomes a second tier player, all the authority the EP ostensibly brings to the table is squandered. He becomes just another voice in the chorus calling for economic redistribution through environmental legislation.

        I don’t understand why his handlers don’t see this. Either they are politically naive (a possibility), or they really believe in economic redistributionism (another possibility).

        And yes, both indicate a shift from traditional ministry and evangelization, just as you point out.

        More needful from the Orthodox is thinking that incorporates the economic and social considerations into an environmental ethic. Following Soros, the UN, CAP, and other economic redistributionists will “brand” the EP as the titular head of the religious/environmental left, which is to say largely irrelevant to most people — not a welcome development certainly but almost inevitable.

        Again, the downside is tremendous. This risk is so self-evident that I don’t understand why his advisers don’t see it.

        • What also struck me was the relatively disorganized nature of this arrival. If I was running the GOA/EP Public relations office for the Green Patriarch there is no way I have pictures of his Gulfstream jet landing and the EP popping out of the Jet. This event should have been more tightly controlled with a more pastoral and American element. When I look at the pictures it looks like a couple of yia-yias left the parish kitchen because Father took them in the parish van to the airport to see the Patriarch.

          Also, When I look at the event I see a press office who can’t even control the noise and get clear sound. The details may be inconsequential but to me they show lack of planning. Why speak outside in front of the Big Bad Jet when you can go inside and speak clearly in front of an icon, pray and have a little reception.

          Also, the GOA press office has to be a little taken back. It looks like at most they had 3rd or 4th Tier Louisiana Polticians at the airport. This shows the the declining importance of the EP in America. No Bobby Jindal, No Mary Landrieu, No Ray Nagin.

          • Bobby Jindal is too savvy intellectually and politically to fall for left wing ‘environmental’ manipulation. Landrieu & Nagin would however – however there was no political hay in this event for them…

          • George Michalopulos :

            I’d say that so far, George Soros isn’t getting his money’s worth. I guess heads are going to roll on 79th St once he finds out how poorly this has been stage-managed.

  3. Here is the coverage from the New Orleans (LA) Time-Picayune:

    Patriarch Bartholomew I, Christian Orthodox leader, opens environmental meeting in New Orleans today.

    Apparently the EP actually arrived in the U.S. on Saturday (Oct 17th) in Memphis. Was there any secular news coverage of that event? (My google skills couldn’t find any.)

  4. George Michalopulos :

    U.S. flags? Are you kidding? Don’t you know that this is a barbarian land? Do barbarians even have flags?

  5. He claims he believes that human-caused CO2 is horrible for Mother Earth, aligns himself with many of the leftist and radical environmentalists groups, and advocates all Americans to stop “polluting” the planet with CO2 and then he flies in a private jet across the world generating oodles of CO2. What was wrong with business class on a commercial airline? Good for thee but not for me is the motto for the elite! He talks the talk, but fails to walk the walk. So much for truth, ethics, and integrity. And he expects us to believe in the propaganda?

  6. How else is one to travel? Just about anything you do creates pollution (yes even walking! see here). Eat less beans, America doesn’t need the gas.

    But yes it looks mighty hypocritical. Perhaps he has bought carbon credits from fellow polluter, the inventor of the internet?

  7. or they really believe in economic redistributionism (another possibility).

    Yes they do “believe” in economic redistributionism. If you have not taken your Christian understanding of human nature to visit your ideas on how to govern the polis (and most have not) then you (largely unconsciously) suck up the prevailing and faddish ideas of the culture around you. In the modern west, that means economic redistributionism. This would be merely naive and ignorant if it were not such an affront to the Christian understanding of human nature and freedom.

    By the way friends, that is not just any old private jet. That is a GulfStream. It is the most expensive, largest, most luxuriant and least “green” private jet in existence. It is the jet that mere multi millionaires can only dream about.

  8. They now have their own “Green Patriarch Channel” on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/GreenPatriarch

  9. Regarding the GOA and the Patriarch’s handlers.

    The GOA is in my opinion a symbol of incompetance. My impression is that
    they are completely clueless.

    A case in point. A few years ago, the Turks grabbed a Monastery in
    Constantinople that was being watched over by a couple of Monks from
    Mount Athos. They confiscated the Monastery without explanation.

    I informed someone at the GOA about this an inquired as to whether they
    were planning to do anything, make any public statement etc.

    It turns out they did not even know about the seizure of the Monastery,
    and did not appear interested.

    I for one have been becoming profoundly disturbed by the behavior of the
    GOA. A case in point is after the Patriarch was treated rudely by
    the President last April.

    Several weeks later his Eminence Archbishop Demetrios and a few other
    Greek American leaders travelled to Washington where they proceeded to
    give Hillary Clinton an award !!!! for promoting religious freedom, despite
    this administration’s shutting the door on the Ecumenical Patriarchate’s
    Turkish situation.

    The GOA is appearing is appearing more and more to be serving more and
    more the interests of the Democratic Party as can be seen by the award
    given to Hillary and this secular groups the Patriarch is meeting with.

    On the bright side, I am delighted by the protests breaking out within the
    Churches of Greece and Cyprus against the Phanar. Hopefully, their
    influence will have an effect on the Phanar.

    Theodoros

    • Harry Katopodis :

      Where in the Bible does it preach hate you preach?

      • If you are referring to my comments, I am pro-Patriarchate please
        do not misunderstand. I am profoundly saddened by the lack of
        publicity given to the Patriarchal visit and to the plight of
        the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Turkey.

        The Patriarch has had his say on the environment and should leave
        it alone. It would have been better for the Patriarch to discuss
        religious freedom issues and to make a stand at this late date
        on behalf of his remaining flock in Constantinople against the
        Turks.

        As one who follows events with regard to the Patriarchate, I revere
        the Great Church and am tremendously disturbed by the fact that the
        crisis surrounding it in Turkey is not being adequately addressed or
        discussed by the GOA or anybody else. I also think it is appalling
        that the Patriarch has been completely disrespected by the White
        House, and there is not a word of protest from the Archdiocese.

        Respectfully,

        Theodoros

  10. cynthia curran :

    I don’t mean to be mean. Maybe, he is traveling in style of an emperor of old Byzantium if they had planes.

  11. Harry Katopodis :

    It saddens me to see that hateful venum spewed on this blog. The Patriarch of Constatinople has a duty to defend Orthodoxy from enemies both from within and from outside of Orthodoxy and that is what His Holiness is doing. Because converts cannot bring the Greeks around to join the religious right they are angry. We will not change Orthodoxy to promote the American Political Agenda of the religious right fanatics.

    The Partiarch is right about the environment. To pollute the earth to the degree corporations and others do is a grave sin because it destroys God’s creation. Contrary to what people write, capitalism is not perfect and one of its sins is enormous polution. To politicize this and destroy the earth will split the gates of hell wide open for those that think pollution is not serious.

    • Michael Bauman :

      Harry, communism, socialism and all totalatarian states have a far worse record on caring for God’s creation than states who operate, more or less, under a free market system.

      Also the use of the term ‘environment’ is ontologically and spiritually wrong from an Orthodox perspective.

      While it is without doubt our respsosibility to dress and keep the earth it is only as images of God and His stewards that we are able to fulfill that command. None of the organizations and folks with which the EP is allied care about man as image of God, the Incarnation of Jesus Christ or salvation as union with the living God.

      Can you actually articulate how alarmism if part of Christianity?

      Can you articulate how forcing draconian economic solutions on entire peoples has anything to do with salvation?

  12. It saddens me to see that hateful venom spewed on this blog. The Patriarch of Constantinople has a duty to defend Orthodoxy from enemies both from within and from outside of Orthodoxy and that is what His Holiness is doing sometimes. Because Christians cannot bring themselves to join the religious left the religious left is angry. We will not change Orthodoxy to promote the Euro-socialist agenda for the religious left fanatics.

    The Patriarch is wrong about the environment. To pollute the earth to the degree communists and developing countries do is a grave sin because it makes it hard for the Children of God to live in freedom. Contrary to what people write, socialism is not perfect and one its sins is enormous limitations on the children of God. To politicize this and destroy the left’s “the sky is falling” view of the earth will split the gates of sanity wide open for those that think the religious left is wrong.

  13. Harry Katopodis :

    Who said anything about socialism? Unfortunately you are a bunch of know-nothings. I cannot debate with ignorant people who serve their father -Satan (hate and evil words0.

    • You did – I quote from your post:

      “converts”, “religious right”, “American political agenda”, “religious right fanatics”, “capitalism”

      Instead of showing some modicum of respect by actually listening to what we are saying you lay out two short paragraphs where you do nothing but label us as “religious right fanatics”. This is exactly what “religious left/socialist fanatics” do. Are you saying you are not a left/socialist religious left wing fanatic? If not what are you – and how do you support the EP’s wholehearted embrace of a particular political position on the environment that just happens to be centrally planned?

    • Harry, if this blog disturbs you so much then might I suggest you pass the time playing the official Patriarchal Video Game.

      http://www.patriarchate.org/multimedia/environmental-balance

    • … you are a bunch of know-nothings… ignorant people who serve their father -Satan…

      This statement got me to thinking. At first it looked like an argumentum ad hominem except that ad hominem means “to the person.” So… can an argumentum ad hominem be directed at a group (“a bunch”), or is the phrase meant to apply to individuals?

      I know that a group of people can take offense at this, but when the statement is directed at a group is it technically an ad hominem attack?

  14. The height of indignity: I saw that yesterday the GOP pointed out to Congress passing a resolution in honor of Confusicus’ birthday and to welcome the EP to Washington as proof of a “do nothing Congress.”

    Have things chnaged, and the EP is supposed to go to the White House?

    • The three previous Patriarchal visits to America (1990, 1997, and
      2002) all featured prominent visits to the White House and honors
      by both Parties in Congress. Then House Speaker Newt Gingrich
      gave honors to the Ecumenical Patriarch in 1997, so it would seem
      strange for the Republics to criticize Congress for welcoming a
      prominent Christian leader to Washington.

      What seems to have changed is the ideology of the White House. Barack
      Obama has visited Turkey and Egypt to apologize to the Islamic world
      for every conceivable injustice they feel. This White House has no
      interest in Christianity or the interests of Eastern Christians living
      in Muslim countries.

      In addition, President Bill Clinton in his capacity as Chief Executive
      visited the Phanar on a State Visit to Turkey in 1999. In 2004, Bush
      visited the Patriarch in Constantinople, not at the Phanar but at least
      in a very public setting before the world’s media.

      The lack of a White House visit is in large part motivated by the
      favoratism Obama and the left feel for Islam over Eastern Christianity,
      as well as their desire to appease Turkey.

      Theodoros
      House.

      Theodoros

  15. Geo Michalopulos :

    Harry, “generally speaking,” I believe that those of us who disagree should have the right to speak our minds. If we’re wrong, point it out, assertions won’t do.

    • Sorry, George. As of January 20th, dissent is no longer patriotic but subversive and possibly treasonous, warranting direct repudiation and marginalization by White House staff. (Even if you are a “well-dressed” retiree worried about the future of your own medical care.) As is clearly evident, such comments exhibit the broad, “unconditional” tolerance of those whose progressive agenda is not to be questioned — not given obvious purity of their intentions.

      Any criticism of this agenda is clearly “hate” filled because we can not possibly have valid concerns or offer reasoned arguments. Our opposition is prima facie evidence of our moral bankruptcy. Because we have failed to recognize the enlightened views of our progressive betters, we are unfit (possibly sub-human – apparently demonic), and do not deserve to have our voice or concerns aired. This is why we certainly deserve to be judged as sons of “Satan” (which is just a wee bit more noxious than the title of “fool” which Jesus sanctioned) or “know nothings” (roughly the modern equivalent of “fool”). “Show trials” would be too good for those of us who clearly must represent the forces of evil.

      This, so far as I can tell, is why many of those who hold this view and are now in power feel justified in seeking to both expand and use their power in the very way that they feared the former administration might. Maybe they knew what they would do if and when they had such power. Now we know.

      Seriously, I do hope that in a less passionate moment, he might realize that those who disagree with him aren’t automatically evil – and we are, in fact, VERY concerned about protecting the great tradition of the Orthodox Church.

  16. It appears that the Ecumenical Patriarch will in fact be received
    by the President at the White House on November 3. This did not
    originally appear on the schedule.

    Theodoros

    • Hey maybe the EP pushing healthcare at the Center for American Progress helped move things along.

      All frustration aside, its nice to see the GOA secured a last minute meeting -although you do have to wonder if the GOA influence in Washington is fading. In the old days whether it was a Democrat or Republican the EP always was a sure thing to visit the president. Not so anymore.

      Now what this meeting entails and how it unfolds will be interesting given Obama’s disposition.

      • I am not sure whether it was a last minute thing or whether someone
        really screwed up the schedule.

        Whether the Patriarch’s visit is a sign of the Archdiocese’s
        declining influence or Obama’s ideological disposition is hard
        to say at this point.

        I was going through his book “Encountering the Mystery” which is
        actually very good when it discusses theology and Monasticism.

        That is what I think he should have emphasized in his talks in
        Washington.

        Theodoros

  17. George Michalopulos :

    I wouldn’t hold my breath about the WH visit. It may be on for now but I fully expect the Turks to do a full-court press to either derail it or make it insignificant, kinda like a photo of the EP in the foyer of the WH or some other touristy venue. trust me, it wont be Oval Office.

    • I think it would be very interesting from a historical perpective to review how past presidential adminstrations have treated the EP.

      Truman, Kennedy, LBJ, Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan etc.

      Who was the first president to receive the EP? Who treated him the best?
      Who treated him the worst? What were some of the defining moments in the history of these visits?

      Maybe instead of making video games the GOA internet office can come up with this little piece of info? It would be a much better use of stewardship money. And since this is unlikely since it means they have to stop twittering and start thinking, I am pretty sure the folks here at AOI can do a great job on this topic.

      So AOI readers what do we know about this history?

      • American relations with the Ecumenical Patriarchate to my knowledge
        go back to the period following the First World War when the
        Western powers occupied Constantinople (1918-1922). Meletios
        Metaxakis had been Archbishop in America when he was “elected”
        (his canonicity was disputed by many Greeks) and was welcomed to the
        White House where he was congratulated before leaving to visit
        Constantinople.

        In 1923, at the Lausanne Conference the US, Britain, and France
        pressured the Turks not to expel the Patriarchate. Meletios
        Metaxakis who was a disaster because of his modernist Church
        tendencies (adoption of the new calendar, Canon 28 etc…)
        was on the other hand quite sensitive to the plight of his flock
        and frequently lobbied the western powers to help them.

        Metaxakis advocated the removal of the Ecumenical Patriarchate to
        Greece and was subsequently pressured to remove himself by the
        Greek government. The US and the other western powers pressured
        the Turks simply to permit the Patriarchate to remain where it
        was, and did not demand that the Turks formally recognize the
        Phanar’s “Ecumenical” status. The Kemalist regime in Turkey to
        this day insists the Patriarch has no significence beyond being
        a local Bishop to the Greek community.

        Orthodox countries Rumania and Yugoslavia (Serbia) also supported
        the Patriarchate’s right to remain in Constantinople.

        Greater American involvement with the Patriarchate came with the
        election of then Archbishop Athenagoras of America to the Ecumenical
        Patriarchate. Athenagoras was supported by the Truman administration
        and flew to Constantinople on the Presidential Plane.

        In 1923 and 1948 (when Athenagoras became Ecumenical Patriarch)
        American and the British were concerned that Communist influence on
        the Moscow Patriarchate would lead to Soviet influence over the
        Eastern Orthodox Churches and wanted to build up Constantinople.

        The support given by Washington to Patriarch Athenagoras did not mean
        support for the Orthodox Greek community in Constantinople. The
        Greek community was assaulted by an infamous government sponsored
        pogrom in September 1955 when 60 Churches were violated in unspeakable
        ways, and all Greek homes and businesses were burned while ordinary
        Greeks were beaten, raped, and in some cases brutally murdered as in
        the case of a 90 year old priest who was doused with gasoline and
        burned alive, and in the case of a Metropolitan who was beaten to
        death.

        The Patriarchate lost most of its flock in Turkey following these
        events, and there are no figures as to how many Christians fled
        Turkey in the aftermath of this violence. Athenagoras lost much
        respect as a result of his failure to speak up for his flock.

        American intervention prevented the expulsion of the Ecumenical
        Patriarchate in 1964 when Turkish rulers expelled another 10,000
        Greeks and threatened the Phanar as well.

        The Turks in turn realizing that removing the Patriarchate would lead
        to diplomatic problems responded by closing the Halki theological
        school in 1971 and cutting off the Phanar’s lifeline of future priests
        and Bishops.

        At this point in history, the Phanar declined internationally as in
        the period between 1923 and 1948. It was in 1990 that Patriarch
        Dimitrios became the first Ecumenical Patriarch to visit the
        United States where he was well received by the first Bush White
        House. The Turks became aggravated by the White House visit and it
        has been reported that Dimitrios was called in by the Turkish police
        to answer questions on his return as to why he was given such a
        prominent reception by the US government.

        In 1991, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew was elected. His enthronement
        was attended by American officials and other government
        representatives.

        It was during the 1990’s that the Ecumenical Patriarchate began to
        regain some of its old international stature and prestige. The
        diplomatic community (especially the US government)became more
        conscious of the Patriarchate’s presence in Turkey. The Phanar began
        to receive American and other foreign diplomats as well as heads of
        state from Europe and some Muslim countries as well.

        Patriarch Bartholomew received Bill Clinton in his capacity as
        President in 1999 at the Phanar and met with George W. Bush in 2004
        outside the Phanar but at least in a public meeting with media
        outlets covering the event.

        Patriarch Bartholomew was received at the Clinton White House in
        1997 and at the Bush White House in 2002.

        The Patriarch’s international visibility came at a price. Turkish
        military leaders, Islamists, and violent groups such as the Grey
        Wolves targeted him asserting the fantastic and bizarre accusation
        that he was planning to revive the Byzantine Empire!!!

        In turn the Patriarchate was attacked by arsonists and bombers five
        times between 1993 and 2004. In 2007, retired Military officers were
        arrested for plotting his assasination and that of the Armenian
        Patriarch.

        The Turkish government officially insisted the Patriarch was not
        “Ecumenical” despite important Pan-Orthodox Synods that were convened
        at the Phanar in 1992, 2005, and 2008. The State Department in late
        2005 stated that it fully recognized the Patriarchate as “Ecumenical”
        and expressed support for the reopening of the Halki Seminary.

        Finally, the Obama administration seems to have reversed policy toward
        the Ecumenical Patriarchate. The Patriarch was not well received
        during Obama’s visit to Turkey last April. He was forced to meet the
        President in a private hotel room out of public view and away from
        the spotlight.

        The spotlight would have brought unwanted attention to the Turkish
        government’s historical horrors that it has wrought against all
        Christian communities. The question remains whether Obama decided
        keeping Turkey happy in the midst of an Islamic revival took
        precedence over supporting religious freedom for the Patriarchate?

        When Pope Benedict visited the Phanar in 2006, there was enormous
        coverage of the visit. The Turks were publicly criticized by
        Newsweek magazine, and the Patriarchate’s difficulties were showcased
        on CNN, FOX News, and National Public Radio in addition to being
        written about in a few American newspaper editorials and op-eds.

        The Turks took a beating there and so it is quite possible they
        pressured Obama to keep his meeting with the Patriarch out of the
        spotlight.

        Another theory for the cooling of Washington’s support for the
        Ecumenical Patriarchate could lie in the warming relations between
        Constantinople and the Russian Orthodox Church. In July 2008, it
        appeared that a crisis was imminent over the Ecumenical Patriarch’s
        visit to Ukraine which is the Canonical territoy of Moscow.

        In the end, Patriarch Bartholomew met with Patriarch Alexey and
        repaired his relations with the Russian Orthodox Church.

        This is a theory, but who knows whether the reconciliation between
        Constantinople and Moscow angered the State Department.

        Theodoros

        • Thanks Theodoros, insofar as I pretty much have Green Patriarch Fatigue these days this is a welcome discussion.

          What do we know of the treatment of the Patriarchate during the Reagan years?

          • I do not know much of the Patriarchate during the Nixon,
            Ford, Carter, and Reagan years. I presume Archbishop
            Iakovos had lobbied for the Phanar in those years.

            Theodoros

  18. Geo Michalopulos :

    Theodoros, excelllent analysis. I’m not so sure that relations between the EP and the MP have been “repaired.” I think there’s a lot less there than meets the eye. In looking back at the photographs of +Kirill and +Bartholomew at the Phanar, bsck in June, it was clear that +Kirill dominated and that the EP looked downcast. I think that the MP told the EP how the cow ate the cabbage. The cat and mouse game re Ukraine is merely a delaying tactic on the part of the Phanar. Maybe they can get a concession or two but the die is pretty much cast.

    Personally, I beieve that the MP is playing along because he realizes that in due time, the EP will be a Russian preserve with Russian incumbents. Thus, any attempt to “elevate” the status of the EP by the Russians must be viewed in this light. If however +Bartholomew does something to displease them, then watch out for some repercussion. For example, I think (and I have it on pretty good authority) that if the upcoming Episcopal Assemblies do not bear any fruit (distinct possibility) then look to Moscow to pull the plug on the offending parties.

    Sad to say (from a Greek viewpoint) but the Russians hold all the cards. They are incredibly patient but they play for keeps. The see of Constantinople is only going to exist for as long as Moscow sees any need for it. Otherwise, it’ll become extinct and/or be relocated into exile. Even in exile, the Russians control a lot of cards. Look at the recent travels of +Hilarion to Cyprus, the success of the MP in the European and British courts, and the rising Russian presence in the See of Jerusalem. (Antioch is pretty much allied with Moscow.)

    • I would hope that Moscow and Constantinople have reconciled. Patriarch
      Kyril visited many of the Churches beginning with Phanar in the
      last several months and there seems to be less of a strain in
      relations.

      It is possible that Russian pressure forced Phanar to back off on
      Ukraine, but even so it was the right thing to do, and the severing
      of communion between these two Patriarchates would have been
      disastrous for the whole of Orthodoxy.

      With regard to Greeks and Russians. I do not believe they are in
      competition with one another. I believe the Greek-Russian rivalry
      is a myth dating to the British in the nineteenth century who
      were attempting to eliminate Greek sympathies for Russia.

      I think that Patriarch Kyril’s agreement with Patriarch Bartholomew
      to bring the Russians living in Turkey under the Phanar is a welcome
      gesture, both because it conforms with the Canons and it demonstrates
      the Russians would like to help the Phanar.

      I for one would have no problem with a Russian Ecumenical Patriarch
      or Russian Bishops at the Phanar. Steven Runciman mentions in his book
      “The Great Church in Captivity” that there were even a couple of
      Serbian Ecumenical Patriarchs a few centuries back.

      The Ecumenical Patriarchate could become like Mount Athos with Bishops
      coming from all Orthodox Churches. This would certainly breathe new
      life in the Church in Turkey.

      But again for the Russians and Greeks, I do not think they are in
      competition. The Russians have had a strong presence in Jerusalem
      since Tsarist times and ROCOR always had the sympathies of the
      Patriarchate of Jerusalem since they both follow the Old Calendar
      and were suspicious of Ecumenism.

      Theodoros

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