Five years ago, on June 16, began the writing of ‘a new chapter in the history of the Church’ as Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew called the meeting of the Local Orthodox Churches that took place on the island of Crete.
The Council took place from June 16 to June 26, 2016, at the Orthodox Academy of Crete under the chairmanship of His Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew.
The hierarchs of the Romanian Orthodox Church participated in the works of the Council under the guidance of His Beatitude Patriarch Daniel.
The Holy and Great Council of Crete did not formulate new dogmas or canons, nor did it bring about changes in the liturgical life. The hierarchs who participated in the Council addressed some of the topical issues and sought solutions to the problems that the contemporary man faces.
Two years after the Council, His Beatitude Patriarch Daniel noted: ‘Despite the surprising and unfortunate absence of four Autocephalous Orthodox Churches, the Holy and Great Council of Crete was a major spiritual event of Orthodoxy, which, after decades of fluctuation between preparations and delays, enthusiasm and hesitation, debated, amended and approved significant documents for the life and mission of the Orthodox Church in the complex context of the world today.’
‘Thus, the Encyclical, the Message and the six documents approved by all the Primates of the present Churches and the overwhelming majority of the hierarchs present at the works of the Holy and Great Council of Crete describe the major problems affecting the life and mission of the Orthodox Church today as well as its relations with the entire Christian world, the followers of other religions and an increasingly secularized society,’ Patriarch Daniel noted in his message to the participants at a Seminary held in Bucharest in June 2017 regarding the reception of the decisions of the Council of Crete.
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