Open letter from the Sketes, Kellia and Monastery fathers and monks of Mt. Athos:  Who up to now had commemorated Patriarch Bartholomew.  They now demand cessation of his commeration and all bishops worlwide as of November 30, 2006.

See full letter written to Patriarch Bartholomew, translated into English

Ellhnika/Greek version of the letter

Photos of Patriarch Bartholomew with the Pope of Rome 


December 30, 2006 - All Twenty Monasteries of Mount Athos sent His All Holiness, Patriarch Bartholomew, a letter listing their objections to his actions which are in direct conflict with the teachings of the Orthodox Church.  Some of the monasteries call for joining Esphigmenou Monastery in ceasing commemoration of Patriarch Bartholomew.

(Ellhnika) Click here to see the Original letter to the Patriarch, in Greek.

(Ellhnika) Click here to see the Press Release from the Twenty monasteries in Greek.

The Twenty Monasteries write: " ... we feel that we have a heavy responsibility to the faithful people . . . who see us as an uncompromising guardian of the Holy tradition . . . For this reason, with pain we declare that we do not agree with your  praying together, with your participation in  Liturgical and  in worship gatherings, which give the impression that  the Orthodox Church, accepts the Roman Catholics and the Pope as the Canonical  Bishop of Rome..." 


The letter continues "... the just concluded visit of the Pope to Fanar [neighborhood where Patriarchate is located in Istanbul] and His Beatitude the Archbishop [Christodoulos'] visit to the Vatican, was a cause of deep pain in our hearts.


Perhaps there was some worldly benefit from all these, but during these visits there took place actions which are in conflict with the practices of Orthodox Ecclesiology.  Your receiving the Pope as though he were the Canonical Bishop of Rome.  Also his presiding on the bishop's throne during the Orthodox Divine Liturgy while wearing an Omophorion; his reciting the "Our Father," the  Liturgical kiss with the Patriarch, are actions which surpass the simple praying together, which are forbidden by the Sacred Canons.


And all these happenings, when the papal tradition has not changed in anything or any of its heretical teachings and politics..."


Then they continue and make their final declaration, --- they declare the Papal Church to be bereft of Apostolic succession and without  "grace."


The fathers tell the Patriarch that they are reverting to the resolutions of the 1980 Double Meeting of the Holy Community of Athos, Esphigmenou Monastery was part of this meeting, and all agreed, which declares: ". . . we believe that our Holy Orthodox Church is the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church of Christ, having the fullness of Grace and Truth and has had the Apostolic Succession without any interruption.    Conversely, the Western "churches" and "confessions" have in many places twisted the Faith of the Bible, the Apostles and the Fathers, and are lacking sanctifying grace, they do not have true Mysteries (Sacraments) nor Apostolic Succession."