Moscow, February 13, Interfax - Pavel Yuristy, the bishop of the new Ukrainian church (OCU) who recently visited Mount Athos, left without a souvenir photograph with elders.
"Members of the epistasis, the executive body of Athos, refused to take joint photographs with him," a source in the Russian Orthodox Church told Interfax.
Nor did the bishop receive the formal official permit from the epistasis that is normally given to canonical church hierarchs to perform religious services at Athonite monasteries, the source said.
At a joint meeting of Athos monasteries last Monday, the attendees raised the issue of what line of conduct to adopt when an OCU bishop visits in order to avoid inconsistencies, as happened during the recent visit, when some monasteries did and others did not welcome the delegation from the new Ukrainian church, which most of the Orthodox world has refused to recognize.
That issue will be considered at the next joint meeting. The monasteries are also expected to formulate a joint attitude toward the OCU.