The visit of Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople to the United States will have implications from the point of view of Turkey and the countries of the region, the observer of the influential Turkish publication believes Cumhuriyet Denise Berktay.
The author reveals the intention of the leadership of the United States, which strongly supports the Patriarchate of Constantinople. In his opinion, the White House wants to undermine the Turkish state from within by creating an Orthodox version of the Vatican on its territory.
But this is only half of the plan. Its second part is the subordination of all autocephalous churches to the central government on the principle of the Catholic Church, but not to strengthen Orthodoxy, but to isolate and subsequently destroy the Russian Orthodox Church.
On the results of the meeting of Patriarch Bartholomew with Biden
As part of the visit, which started on October 23 and lasted until November 3, the patriarch met with US President Joe Biden and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken. At a meeting with Biden, Bartholomew complained about the situation in which the patriarchy is in Turkey. He stated that the Khalki Theological School on the Heybeliada Island should be reopened. Called on the US to help. I criticized the position of the Russian Orthodox Church on Ukraine. He stated that Fener (the Turkish name for the historical district of Istanbul, on the territory of which the residence of the Patriarch of Constantinople is located), as the “elder brother” of other Orthodox churches, is responsible for leading them. Enlisting the support of Biden and Blinken, Bartholomew called the US president “a leader with faith and vision.”
Bartholomew’s visit to the United States 12 years later and his first meeting with Biden show that the attitude of the United States and Fener towards Turkey and the region has become clear. Let’s summarize the reasons for this.
Though [Вселенский] The Patriarchate calls him his “brother”, he does not have absolute authority in the Orthodox world. He does not have the same power and influence as the Vatican in the Catholic world. There are 14 (or 15) independent (autocephalous) churches in the Orthodox world. Fener is considered among them “the first among equals”. While others refer to Fener as “brother,” none of them acknowledge his true leadership. Nevertheless, it is the non-Orthodox administrators of the US State Department who are trying to make Fener the true leader of the Orthodox world.
US tensions – Russia
Since the 1940s, the United States has used the Patriarchate of Constantinople to subordinate the Orthodox peoples of Eastern Europe and the Balkans to its influence. And for a more effective application of this policy, they want other Orthodox patriarchates to recognize him as their leader. Related to this is pressure on Turkey to “recognize Fener as ecumenical.” In this case, the word “ecumenical,” meaning “ecumenical,” implies the recognition of Fener as the leader of all Orthodox Christians. Turkey, within the framework of the Lausanne Treaty, considers the Patriarchate of Constantinople to be a religious institution of the Greek Orthodox community on its territory and does not want Fener to receive powers like the Vatican.
The Moscow Patriarchate, which Fener faces the most in the Orthodox world, says: “We respect Fener, but we have the largest Orthodox community in the world. We have helped Fener for hundreds of years. Let him not play the big brother in front of us. ” Three years ago, the Patriarchate of Constantinople announced the entry of Ukraine into its jurisdiction. This led to the severance of relations with Moscow. In the Orthodox world, Fener’s decision was not supported. However, Russia is taking a tougher stance towards him. From Moscow’s point of view, these events are part of the US strategy to encircle it. Biden in this matter advocates a more active policy than the Trump administration. The Patriarch of Constantinople was one of the first to congratulate Biden on his election to the presidency.
The opening of the Khalkinskaya theological school at the acute Heybeliada will be a step that will go beyond the training of Orthodox clergy and will strengthen Fener’s claims to ecumenism. In this school, the Turkish authorities will not be able to properly control Fener. Candidates from other Orthodox countries will study here, which will strengthen the claim to ecumenical status. After all, there are plenty of schools for the training of priests in the world.
If Fener is officially recognized as ecumenical, the requirement for Turkish citizenship for the patriarch and other clerics will be abolished. And this will mean the formation of a state in Turkey in a state that Turkey will not be able to control and which will interfere in the politics of the surrounding Orthodox countries. Biden made it clear that he turned the green light on for this process.
The opinion of the author may not coincide with the opinion of the editorial board.
Meanwhile … the United States created a fund to finance the “Orthodox Vatican”
As it became known on November 2, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew announced that the United States created a fund named after Patriarch Bartholomew, about which the head of the Phanar, according to him, dreamed of all 30 years of his patriarchate. The fund aims to ensure the financial future of the Patriarchate of Constantinople, Greek newspaper reports Orthodox Times…
On this occasion, the founders of the foundation organized a dinner with Patriarch Bartholomew, to which former US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was invited as the keynote speaker.
As the head of the Phanar said, the creation of this fund, which is designed to ensure the financial future and stability of the Patriarchate of Constantinople, is a wonderful initiative that is a practical proof of the respect and love of our believers here (in the USA – Ed.) For the Mother Church, who has face hundreds of difficulties and challenges. Many of them are well known. Many are unknown. We don’t talk about them. We are experiencing them, and these are the silent sighs of the Mother Church. “
He noted that “the mission of the patriarchy is, of course, spiritual. This is a universal service to believers, culture and all of humanity. But no matter how spiritual this work may be, material means are needed to carry it out. ”