Orthodox: What would happen...?

What would happen, if hypothetically the Eastern and Oriental Orthodox unite, to the status of Alexandria:

  1. Who would step down as Pope of Alexandria (I assume the Greek would considering it is a rival claimant erected to challenge the original Egyptian which was incorrectly deemed Monophysite )

  2. What would happen in terms of Patriarchal ranking since the Oriental orthodox see of Alexandria together with Rome rejected canon 28 of Chalcedon which elevated Constantinople above Alexandria to be the highest eastern see. Who would step down? Constantinople or Alexandria?

Hi Wandile. I’ll be interested to see if any Orthodox answer your question. But in any case, it’s interesting to me, as an ecumenically minded Christian, that you simply said

without specifying a direction.

First a union must occur, as described in Beyond Dialogue: The Quest for Eastern and Oriental Orthodox Unity Today, Rev John H Erickson, Dean Symposium on 1700th Anniversary of Christian Armenia The faith of the ancient councils - I Nicaea, I Constantinople, Ephesus, Chalcedon, II Constantinople, III Constantinople, II Nicaea - is consistent, whether one labels all seven or only the first three as ecumenical. But their terminology is not always consistent. I Nicaea, for example, used the words hypostasis and ousia as synonyms, while the later councils took great pains to distinguish them. So too, the anathemas of the ancient councils are not always consistent. Too often we have mistaken the “short-hand” of later periods for historical fact. The conclusion of the Joint Commission therefore is quite appropriate: “Both families agree that the lifting of anathemas and condemnations will be consummated on the basis that the Councils and fathers previously anathematized or condemned are not heretical” (1990 Chambesy Agreed Statement, para. 10). But will this happen any time in the foreseeable future?

I suspect that both patrirchs would continue until one or the other passed away, with the remaining patriarch assuning the responsibility of the other. On his passing, a new patriarch would be elected. Not that complex.

I don’t believe ranking would be an issue, since Moscow Patriarchate is bigger than both combined.

The pope of Alexandria is more akin to the patriarch of Constantinople. in terms of power and leadership just with a bigger home base. In any case I don’t see the union being likely. Even if they did unify the nation based confederate system would still dominate those churches.

1.) Either both resign and a single person takes their place, or what prodromos said.

2.) I don’t think the ranking would be much of an issue either. If they did reunited, I’d imagine the ranking would change from its current status anyway, although I doubt anyone would accept Moscow as the top dog.

Then we get into an issue of liturgy, calendar, etc…Coptic vs Byzantine Rite. Could the two co-exist in Orthodoxy?

Why can’t they? Oriental Orthodoxy has at least three rites within it and different calendars. Does it matter if Armenians celebrate Christmas on January 19th on the Gregorian and we celebrate it in November on theirs?

What is this, some kind of “checkmate, Orthodox!” thread?

We have two calendars coexisting in the Eastern Orthodox Church. It isn’t an ideal situation but it isn’t impossible either

If I might jump in here, I’m not too surprised by the puzzlement this question caused among two Orthodox posters. I don’t even get it, and I’m a Catholic!

Not to mention Western rite Orthodoxy.

That could be used in the arguments on either side of this discussion: WRO shows that one can be both Western and Orthodox; but then again, the whole basis for having WRO is the Orthodox belief that Catholics and Anglicans (not to mention Lutherans, Methodists, etc. ) are in error, no?

I just meant it as another example that multiple liturgies and calendars can and do co-exist within Orthodoxy.

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