ROAC - Valentine

ROAC-V is the acronym lately applied to the recent schism in the Russian Orthodox Autonomous Church of 2004, supporting the uncanonical seizure of total power over the synod and the entire Russian Autonomous Church by Metropolitan Valentine of Suzdal and Vladimir.

Metropolitan Valentine, as an archimandrite from the Soviet Patriarchate, wisely joined the ROCOR on April 11, 1990. The ROCOR then formed the Free Russian Orthodox Church (FROC) in Russia and was in administrative union with her. On February 10, 1991, Archimandrite Valentine was consecrated a bishop by four ROCOR bishops in the Tsar-Martyr Memorial Church of Job the Much-Suffering in Brussels, Belgium.

Bishop Valentine and several other hierarchs of the newly-formed FROC later came into conflict with the ROCOR over two of its decisions: (1) to unite with the Cyprianites and adopt their ecclesiology - which meant most immediately the recognition of and union with the Soviet Moscow Patriarchate - and (2) to arbitrarily redivide and reassign the FROC dioceses in Russia, a tactic that had and would further allow the Soviet Moscow Patriarchate to reclaim FROC churches in the course of re-registration with the State (the legal owner of all church property in the old U.S.S.R./new Russian Federation.)

The ROCOR hierarchy, which now favored union with Moscow and the dissolution of the FROC, uncanonically cut off or deposed Bishop Valentine and his fellow hierarchs, who not long thereafter formed the ROAC. In 2001, Archimandrite Gregory (George) joined the rightly confessing ROAC Synod and was consecrated a bishop, and later raised to the status of Archbishop. This was the first step in re-establishing the hierarchy in America.

During a 2004 visit to Archbishop Gregory’s diocese, Metropolitan Valentine attempted to compel Archbishop Gregory to accept several canonical infractions and new ecclesiological doctrines - (1) the Metropolitan has universal and supreme jurisdiction in all dioceses and he is above the canons; (2) the Cyprianite view that the mysteries of heretics and schismatics, particularly all groups listed on these pages, are valid; (3) Baptism in a canonical form is unnecessary for Orthodox, on which basis Met. Valentine received 180 unbaptized Haitians into the ROAC; (4) refusal to curb the heretical statements or practices of priests, especially those to whom he was financially-beholden (e.g., Fr. Vladimir Shishkoff giving communion to a Greek Archdiocese priest and laity, sending ROAC people to commune in ROCOR-L, ROCOR-V, Jerusalem Patriarchate churches); and (5) the seizure by the Metropolitan of several of Archbishop Gregory’s clergy and monastics without the latter’s consent.

When Archbishop Gregory sent a protest and accusations to the Synod against these crimes, Metropolitan Valentine uncanonicaly “retired” and cut off Archbishop Gregory from the Synod, and transferred all his archdiocese and clergy to himself. No synod meeting was ever permitted to convene by the Metropolitan and hear the charges against himself. Other canonical violations followed, with a schism in ROAC being the result - on the one side, Archbishop Gregory and those who remained faithful to the canons and dogmas of Orthodoxy, and on the other, those who out of fear or ambition have sided with Metropolitan Valentine. Therefore, ROAC-V, finds a place on this page with schismatics until the canonical violations of Metropolitan Valentine are addressed and the exact position of the bishops in Russia is determined.

For further information about ROAC-V, please look at the following site: www.ROACAmerica.org


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Archbishop Gregory
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