Established by Canonical Charter Feb. 2, 1927

Also known as
The American Orthodox Catholic Church

Statement by Patriarch

This Church and our clergy have been on the receiving end of abuse by the so called canonical orthodox churches and clergy. Some of their claims are true but more is false and misleading. They tend to bend and shape their claims of Church history to suit their desires - to one day claim they are the American Church.

It appears the idea of SCOBA is the early step towards orthodox unity. A Greek Archbishop in 1929 claimed to be over all Orthodox in America and the Greek Archbishop in America presides over SCOBA. Maybe its a view of the future when the Ecumenical Patriarch declares that his Greek Church is the American Patriarchate.

The Antiochians were given Autocephalous status by their Patriarch and many of their Churches use "American" as part of their Church name or how they explain who they are.

As for the OCA they have had problems getting the Ecumenical Patriarch to recognize them or their Metropolitan. They were chartered in 1970, 43 years after we were chartered, by the Russian Patriarch (Moscow). But they do have close ties to the other ethnic orthodox in America.

The problem we run into with all these jurisdictions is simply they have no compassion, christian charity, love for their fellow man and they violate Holy Scripture and the canons easily and with "a good excuse". Someone has decided the Ecumenical Patriarch was the only one with authority to start the American Church - which is false. They turned their back on this Church and our clergy - that was wrong. It was done out of greed for money, power, authority and territory - and this violated the canons also.

The hierarchy in Orthodoxy is not like that of the Roman Catholic Church. One Patriarch does not rule over another and he only is suposed to rule within his Patriarchate, his land. All Patriarch's are said to be equal. So where did the Ecumenical Patriarch get the canonical authority to ignore the Church started by Russia and to claim he alone had the authority to start the American Church?

And by what canonical authority did these righteous people have a canonical right to turn their back on a sister Church? A canonically established Church! By what canonical right and authority did they act to destroy this Church and to continue for over 70 years to claim this Church no longer existed and to attack long dead orthodox clergy? By what canonical authority did they establish missions in the New World and then claim it was their territory?

The answer is simple! They had no canonical right or authority for these actions! Their acts violated the Sacred and Divine Canons then and they continue today! By their continued violation of the canons and the acts mentioned they caused a Schism in American Orthodoxy. By their continued lies, referred to as perjury, about this Church, their continued attacks on the long dead clergy of this Church and the numerous identifiable violations of the canons we believe they have deposed and excommunicated themselves from the Body of Christ. The canons direct us to excommunicate all involved in Schism. Those who perjure themselves are to be deposed.

Many other acts by these ethnic clergy violated the canons and continue to violate the canons today. i.e. Bishop Germanos came to this country without authority and was fundraising, trying to take parishes away from this Church and openly accepted a suspended priest without the required letters, which in itself is sufficent according to the canons to warrant his, Bp. Germanos, being deposed. He never was! Clergy from various jurisdictions continue to defame and lie about Abp. Ofiesh, Bp. Sophronius and Bp. Ignatius and not showing respect to a bishop and perjury all violate the canons. These clergy should be treated as the canons direct. These groups moved into our canonical jurisdiction which violates the canons and continue to act within our jurisdiction. These are just some of the violations of the Sacred and Divine Canons.

As you can see above these "clergy" violated the canons and Scripture over 70 years ago and continue to do so today. We now state that if these orthodox groups within our canonical jurisdiction make no effort to repair this Schism and the damage they have done all these years that the penalties of the Canons shall befall them. We have this right since they are violating said canons in out territory and under our canonical jurisdiction, like it or not.

Since the Ecumenical Patriarch would have no superior authority over the Russian Patrarch or Synod when in Russia and the Russian Patriarch has no superior authority over any other Patriarch when outside Russia and in another Patriarch's jurisdiction. We therefore declare this Synod to be the highest canonical authority in the New World, our canonical jurisdiction. Thus by canon law this Synod has superior authority to state that those who are part of this Schism in American Orthodoxy and continue acting in a manner that is Schismatic towards us shall be viewed as suffering the fate of the Canons that have been violated constantly over the years. We pray for the time the Holy Spirit softens their hearts towards us and we begin to see changes away from those acts that have caused the Schism.

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We are the same Church that was canonically chartered as the American Orthodox Catholic Church in 1927 and incorporated in 1928. We follow Holy Scripture, The Canons and Orthodox Tradition, use the approved Orthodox liturgies, have valid canonical orders, and our Synod canonically declared this Church to be the American Orthodox Patriarchate!

We cannot be in communion with those who violate the canons, attack this Church, defame the dead and who continue to act so contrary to the canons.

Patriarch Nikon
July 17, 2007