Synod Action to Anathematize & Depose
Regarding the Decrees issued in 1999 against former bishops of The Holy Eastern Orthodox Catholic and Apostolic Church in North America by the members of the North American Holy Synod
The North American Holy Synod voted (1999) to anathematize and depose from office four former bishops of this Church.
They are listed (named) on our excommunicated clergy page. They left this Church and have since started an independent church claiming to be orthodox and using our Church history but advertise numerous non-orthodox features such as the old roman rite, and others they state they use. After contacting those with more knowledge of the canons and much consideration and discussion with the synod we determined the former bishops of this Church were in violation of the canons and in fact must be subject to the penalties as stated for the offenses. Canon XIV of the 17 canons states when any bishop shall secede from his Metropolitan [the holy council has decreed that] "he shall be deposed from office", while Canon VI of the 21 canons says "If anyone conducts a church of his own apart from the Church and without permission [from the Metropolitan or Patriarch] the present Canon Anathematizes them". Other Canons such as Canon XXXI of the 85 Canons were also considered and found to support our action.
Former bishops of this Church have established a church independent of this Holy Church and Synod and without authority of the Metropolitan. This is in direct violation of a number of our (orthodox) canons. The Metropolitan has also been attacked both verbally and in writing in this matter and he was listed (by these same former bishops) as a former primate of their schismatic church and they proclaimed a new primate and claim to be us under a different name.
They have publicly declared their church, the orthodox catholic church in north america, to be our Church using our history and then claiming to be using the old roman rite liturgy. They also list and acknowledge recent (1999) ordinations by their own authority and communion with a celtic orthodox bishop and others. These acts continue contrary to the canons.
When 2 of these bishops resigned one stated the Metropolitan mandated a consecration without synod approval but this was not true. That individual was cut off from all synod acts by his own request and the other one had been in the hospital and unavailable and failed to reply to a request to vote on synod business. After their return they objected to the newly elected synod members [and they attacked the Metropolitan] and referred to an ongoing (pending) vote as papal irregularity or error when in fact is s a generallycceted ptice in Orthodoxy. The previously mentioned consecration took place on the mandate that bishop had issued himself.
The full synod headed by the Metropolitan declare the former "bishops" of this Holy Church to have left and acted against the canons of the Holy Fathers and to continue to act contrary to the canons by establishing an independent church and using an unauthorized liturgy.
The full synod being in agreement that the canons have been violated and that the know claim against this Church and Synod was not acted on as the canons direct the full Synod agrees to follow the canons and declare and proclaim Anathema and depose from office said four schismatic "bishops". Their actions against the canons are public, online (internet) and without repentance. The Synod finds no valid reason to justify the actions by these individuals and that their schismatic church has been ongoing for more that a year. All their acts have been determined to be contrary to the canons and we determine the canons mandate this action by the full Synod.
Note: They used our Church name without authority or permission along with their new name. We feel this act also gives us the authority to act against these individuals.
+In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
To fulfill the requirements of the Canons of the Orthodox Church we find it necessary to proclaim and publish this "Anathema" against former bishops of this Church who by their actions have created a Schism by founding and establishing a church titled "the orthodox catholic church in north america" and placing our Metropolitans name, title and photograph on internet pages claiming He (Metropolitan Victor) was a former primate of that same Schismatic entity.
These actions by our former bishops violate numerous canons against leaving the Church and Metropolitan and setting up an altar separate from the Church and without the approval of the bishop of the chief see or Metropolitan, for condemning their Metropolitan and for insulting the Metropolitan. Their schismatic church claims our history, name, clergy while on another website claim to use non-orthodox rites.
The Canons (Rudder) are clear that the Anathema be pronounced and the bishops guilty of such acts be Deposed from office. This act is not done lightly, but after much prayer, consideration and discussion with those educated in Canon Law, bishops of historic national (ethnic) Churches and our synod advisors.
WE HEREWITH PRONOUNCE THIS ANATHEMA AGAINST AND DEPOSE FROM OFFICE...
names listed here on original decree
The Canons prohibit anyone from praying with them under penalty. (original decree signed)
For the Synod,
Copies of the documents signed by the synod are in the Church archives and the original decree issued was signed as the Church constitution requires...
By the Archbishop President
c. XIV of the 17 Canons.
c. VI of the 21 Canons.
c. LXXVI of the 85 Canons decrees that no bishop shall ordain whoever he wants to the office of Episcopate - such ordinations are invalid and void.
c. XIV (any bishop who secede or apostatize from his Metropolitan).
c. LV of the 85 Canons: Clergy Insulting their Bishop. and others pertain to such cases and actions.
c. XXVIII of the 85 canons
If any Bishop, Presbyter, or Deacon, who has been justly deposed from office for proven crimes, should dare to touch the liturgy which had once been put in his hands, let him be cut off from the Church altogether.
(cc. IV, XII, XV of Antioch; c. XIV of Sard.; Basil's epistle to Gregory, which is his c. LXXXVIII.)