There simply must be a way to understand that apart from earthly politics. It certainly does not imply or grant any sense of infallibility or inerrancy when speaking as Bishop of Constantinople as history would go to show… but how could what is written be reinterpreted in a way in which it can be accepted in a way that is useful for the future of the Church? What you have shared is helpful, and it only encourages me all the more to see what is written understood in a new way for the very purpose of restoring the understanding of the Eastern Orthodox to being required to think about ecclesiology in a solely Apostolic and non-political way. I have friends that I have grown up with who are Bosnian, whose parents and siblings had to flee their country because of a political so-called Orthodoxy… that nasty two-headed eagle. What happened there cannot be allowed to be repeated. The Church must undermine violence for the sake of peace and unity in Christ in Herself. If the city of what historically was and to some extent still is Constantinople is to be in any way “retaken“, it must be by peaceful means… or if violence is necessitated, it must not be in any way incited by Christians. I want Christians in Turkey, and in all the world, to have their basic human rights recognized. One of the best ways for this to happen is for a positive development in attitude and purpose when it comes to the Eastern Orthodox understanding of the relationship between the Church and the State in the contemporary world, understanding the needed separation of Church and State, which in their case is primarily for the benefit of the Orthodox Church… and the sanctification of the Orthodox and revitalization of their communities, not on the basis of politics or ethnicity, but upon the foundation of Faith in Christ and loyalty and service to His Kingdom… not living for any earthly city, but for the Eternal City which is to come, as they live in pilgrimage upon the earth. They are in exile in Babylon, and ought to (and indeed do) pray to the Lord our God on its behalf, for in its welfare they will find their welfare. In their doing that, the Name of Christ will be blessed forever, and they will be a blessing to all of the nations that they are in, as they strive to serve their communities, and instead of fantasizing over violent conquest, fantasizing about what good things they can do for the people around them in the charity of Jesus and the Holy Spirit in the Unity of God the Father in the Glory of God in the Trinity, a wellspring of life and love, overflowing in good things in all the world, as many are drawn to Faith in Christ and greater love of neighbor (and Eternal Life). I believe that the Book of Haggai, what is written there is a prefiguring of things to come in the Church… and that Zechariah 2-4 has yet to be fullfulled, but that it shall be fulfilled in the Church in greater glories yet to come according to the purposes of Christ who works all things for our good (Romans 8:28), and who is Author of the Metanarrative of History, and has great stories to tell in the future of impossible reconciliation and deliverance to prove that He is the God of the Impossible. Jesus Christ is worthy to receive the Reward of His Suffering — a Church, not only in fullness of Faith, but also in fullness of measure and stature—to the Stature of Christ. The Bride will be ready for the Wedding. It will be a Glorious Thing. Let us begin the preparation. The Wedding will only happen once in all of Eternity, let us spend as many centuries in preparation as we need to as we await the Blessed Hope and the Returning of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ to visibly rule and reign over all of humanity, most especially the People known by His Name, from that point forth and forever.
Now, the 28th Canon. How can this be reunderstood by Rome in order for it to be accepted? Can we speculate? For any steps towards reunion must simultaneously both be on Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox grounds. (Peter Kreeft did a good lecture on Ecumenism with Protestants… you’d have to read it yourself before making any judgements (the title of the lecture is “Ecumenism Without Compromise” [not at all meaning that Protestants wouldn’t have to come to accept all of the Teachings of the Catholic Church to be truly restored to unity with the Church… He argues that the best reason for being Catholic is for the same reason Protestants are Protestant… and that is a relationship with Christ and service of His Kingdom on earth in fulfilling the Great Commission.]