Committee for Ecumenical Relations 2013 Report


Committee Members: Bishop Demetrios (GOA), Chair; Bishop Alexander (AOCA); Bishop Ioan Casian (Romanian); Bishop Melchisedek (OCA); Committee Liaison: Very Rev. Fr. Nathanael Symeonides; Consultants: Rev. Fr. Thomas Fitzgerald, Rev. Fr. Leonid Kishkovsky, Rev. Fr. John Morris, Anne Glynn-Mackoul, and Rev. Fr. Thomas Hopko


The Committee for Ecumenical Relations did not meet in 2013. The Orthodox-Catholic Theological Consultation in North America had a meeting on the campus of St. Vladimir Seminary on June 4th-5th.

Current Assigned Tasks:

The following three items are currently pending as tasks to be accomplished in the near future:

1. To request the addition of the following consultants: a) to the committee: Fr. Nicholas Apostola, Despina Prassas, and a representative from the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia (ROCOR); b) to the sub-committee on relations with the Oriental Orthodox: Fr. Thomas Fitzgerald and an additional member requested of Metropolitan Philip of the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese.

2. To solicit from all member bishops of the Assembly to share their views regarding ecumenical and interfaith activities, dialogues, and so forth, including perceived goals and any unique guidelines for their particular jurisdiction that are observed in addition to those developed by SCOBA by the end of September, 2012. This will permit a full review and revision of the existing guidelines to be approved by the Assembly of Bishops.

3. To request the Chair of the Assembly of Bishops appoint or suggest an Orthodox co-chair for the Orthodox-Roman Catholic Theological Consultation in North America. Fr. Thomas Fitzgerald (GOA) is to serve as the Executive Secretary and Metropolitan Methodios of Boston (GOA) has recently served as co-chair in an interim capacity.

In addition to those active dialogues and commissions inherited from SCOBA (Orthodox- Roman Catholic Theological Consultation in North America; Joint Commission of Orthodox and Catholic Bishops; Joint Commission of Eastern and Oriental Orthodox—though both joint commissions have been temporarily interrupted), the committee affirmed a desire to re-engage the Lutheran and Episcopalian traditions through the format of the previous consultations. Likewise, the Assyrian Church of the East has requested a dialogue with the Ecumenical Patriarchate; as the Assyrian Church of the East is headquartered now in the United States this may also present an opportunity for engagement at the local (national) level.