Redefining Cyprianism: Episcopocentrism

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Redefining Cyprianism: Episcopocentrism

Postby Maria » Mon 17 July 2017 6:35 am

Below is an essay written by a lay theologian under Archbishop Kallinikos of Athens. Please feel free to give a response or ask a question about this essay.

In this essay, Mannes appears to be redefining Cyprianism. One can also see the effects of Roman Catholic teachings here, whereby the faithful attribute to their heretical Orthodox hierarch a certain infallibility arguing that these hierarchs cannot do any wrong, and thus, to separate from these heretical hierarchs would be an act of schism.

Note: This essay was published in a closed group on Facebook, but because Facebook inserts cookies that can damage computers and/or slow them down, I hesitate to link to that website. Besides, one would only be able to view this PDF document if they were a member of this closed group. Further note: I have only included the essay, not the footnotes.

Episcopocentrism: Transposing the Boundaries of the Church

Episcopocentrism, as a heresy, was expounded chiefly by Fa-
ther Epiphanios Theodoropoulos [9] and arose as a reaction to
Matthewitism (which it dubs “Zealotry,” including therein, how-
ever, other teachings that are in every way correct, such as keep-
ing one’s distance from uncondemned heretics). It is the most
dangerous ecclesiological heresy of our time, along with ecumenism,
to which it renders sterling service.

This heresy transposes the boundaries of the Church from the
Truth of the Faith to the persons who administer it, regarding
as evidence that one is “within the Church” the fact that one is in
communion with those in authority at all times, even if they are
heretics, though on the grounds that they have not been officially
cut off from the Body of the Church.

This ecclesiological heresy is in direct contradiction both to the
teaching of the Church as expressed through the Synods and
the Holy Fathers and to the practice of the latter and also of all
Orthodox at a time when heresy makes itself manifest within the
bosom of the Church.

For the Saints, evidence that one is essentially within the Church
is the Truth of one’s Faith,[10] that is, the Orthodoxy of his Confession.

Thus, Orthodox who break communion with those in authority,
when the latter have fallen into heresy, in no way regard them-
selves, and never have been regarded, as “outside the Church.” [12]

This unheard-of teaching of communion with Hierarchs who
are uncondemned heretics invalidates the entire Orthodox struggle
that always preceded the Synodal condemnation of a heresy,
which struggle delivered the Church from the divisions and
schisms that heresy inflicted on Her. [13]

This heresy has, unfortunately, incapacitated a large segment
of those who, in all other respects, have an Orthodox mentality,
but who for decades have not dared to do the obvious (that is, to
break ecclesiastical communion with those who preach heresy),
out of fear of finding themselves “outside the Church.” 14

The ever-memorable contemporary Father of the Church, Father
Theodoretos (Mavros), in particular wrote illuminating works against
this heresy.

– Nikolaos Mannes, a lay theologian under Archbishop Kallinikos of Greece
Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on me a sinner.

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Re: Redefining Cyprianism: Episcopocentrism

Postby Bishop_Irineos » Mon 17 July 2017 1:27 pm

Judging from the footnote numbers, this is not the full essay. Is it available anywhere in full for review?

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Re: Redefining Cyprianism: Episcopocentrism

Postby Maria » Mon 17 July 2017 5:12 pm

I will ask several people. I think that this is a chapter from a book Mannes wrote as it starts with footnote #9.

Here are the footnotes from this chapter.

The term “Episcopocentrism” (despotic rule by the Church’s Masters, or
Bishops) is preferable to “Epiphanism,” since it today has evolved even
further through the teachings of Metropolitan John (Zizioulas) of Pergamon
[Patriarchate of Constantinople], now its leading exponent. Through his writings,
Father Epiphanios served, and serves, this heresy very well, chiefly through his
theory concerning officers and foot soldiers in the Church, depriving the latter
of the indisputable right to resist and protest when the Faith is in crisis, and,
as well, through his blasphemous and potentially destructive view of the
Fifteenth Canon of the First-Second Synod. However, it is Metropolitan John
who has elevated the administrative jurisdiction of the Bishop in the affairs of
the Church to a “dogma of dogmas,” in conformity with the model of
Papocentric power (a recent example being the behavior of Metropolitan
Theokletos of Phlorina towards Father Paisios Papadopoulos). [The author is not
questioning, here, proper episcopal authority and oversight of the Church, but
is, rather, contrasting “Epiphanism” and “Episcopocentrism” with the
charismatic quality that empowers a true Shepherd and Master—Trans.]

“Those who belong to the Church of Christ belong to the Truth; those who
do not belong to the Truth do not belong to the Church of Christ either; and
all the more so, if they speak falsely of themselves by calling themselves,
or calling each other, holy pastors and hierarchs. For it has been instilled in
us that Christianity is characterized not by persons, but by the truth and
exactitude of Faith” (St. Gregory Palamas, “Refutation of the Letter of
Patriarch Ignatios of Antioch,” §3, in Panagiotes K. Chrestou (ed.),
Γρηγορίου τοῦ Παλαμᾶ Συγγράμματα
[The works of Gregory Palamas], Vol. II [Thessalonike: 1966], p. 627).

“[Christ called] the Catholic Church the correct and saving Faith in Him”
(St. Maximos the Confessor, Patrologia Græca, Vol. XC, col. 132A).

“Eustathians” under the Arian-minded Bishops of Antioch, Orthodox under
Nestorios of Constantinople, St. Maximos the Confessor and those with
him under Monothelitism, Iconodules under Iconoclasm, anti-unionists under
the false synods of Lyons and Ferrara-Florence, et al.

It is for precisely this reason that the Fifteenth Canon of the First-Sec-
ond Synod praises those walled off from such heretical pseudo-Bishops, for
“they have been sedulous to deliver the Church from schisms and divisions.”

Moreover, this heresy has influenced a segment of Orthodox newly walled
off from ecumenism, who think that the struggle against heresy stops simply
at walling off and that any further action, such as the consecration of Orthodox
Bishops, constitutes “schism” and “forming a new Church,” thereby accepting
as “canonical” Bishops who have fallen into heresy and from whom they are
walled off!
Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on me a sinner.

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Re: Redefining Cyprianism: Episcopocentrism

Postby Maria » Mon 17 July 2017 7:29 pm

I got your answer:

Orthodox Tradition published by Etna monastery.

The PDF below is not the same publication, but it is related, and may prove to be beneficial reading:
Originally published in Greek in 1971, and translated into English in 1992
Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on me a sinner.

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