To Pope and Patriarch of Alexandria and All Africa His Beatitude Theodoros,
To the Hierarchy of the Holy Synod of the Patriarchate of Alexandria
Your Beatitude, Pope and Patriarch of Alexandria and All Africa,
Beloved brother Metropolitans in Christ
I write to You, your brother in Christ, Archbishop of Dmanisi (Georgia) and Agarak-Tashiri (Modern Armenia), Great Britain and Ireland of the Georgian Orthodox Church.
It has caused me huge grief to hear that on the 29th December 2021, the Orthodox Church of Russia, made a unbelievable decision to establish its own Exarchy on the territory of Glorious, Holy and Apostolic Patriarchate of Alexandria and all Africa.
I personally understand Your concern, for similar decision was made on 15th October 2021 by Moscow, to establish Eparchy of Erevan and Armenia. They appointed Archbishop Leonid Gorbachev to rule this newly established Eparchy, the same Archbishop who they intend to send to the blessed continent of Africa.
As I have already mentioned, my Diocese contains Agarak-Tashiri (Akhtala), it is 1600 years old eparchy, in the region of North Armenia. Historically, when yet the patriarchate of Moscow did not exist, the modern northern side of Armenia was governed by the bishops of Katholicosate of Georgia. At that time the Chalcedonians that lived on the territory of Armenia used to be under the jurisdiction of these Georgian bishops. After the restoration of autocephality of the Church of Georgian in 1917, by the decision that was made on 31th December 1943, the Patriarchate of Moscow acknowledged the Chalcedonians of Armenia as members of the Church of Georgia.
Regardless of this historical fact, as I told, still the Church of Russia decided to appoint its own Exarch over all of Armenia.
Honourable brothers, it is clear that we are participant of one destiny and if anyone understands Your just grief, it is me, who has been invaded by the Russian Church on the historical territory that the Church of Georgia, by the Grace of the Holy Spirit has entrusted to me.
As one of the bishops, I carry with me the grief and in my thoughts I search for the solution, for there is no end to the Russian anti-ecclesiological behaviour against the political boarders of Georgia and generally in Southern Caucasus, where historically existed a jurisdiction of the Katholicosate of Georgia, as well as against other local Churches.
I would like to express my solidarity and prayers for the challenges that you are facing now, in return I would also like to ask for your support and prayers.
Let us pray for Russian brother bishops, for the Holy Spirit to establish within them the good seed of peace and to deliver the Church from the consequence of imperialistic ideology.
Archbishop of Dmanisi and Agarak-Tashiri, Great Britain and Ireland
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