Teoctist Ar?pa?u

Here’s the third old guy, age 92, that expired on that fateful day, July 30, 2007. I promise this will the last in my string of expired-old-guy posts. As Valentin points out to me in a comment to my Ingmar Bergman post, Teoctist Ar?pa?u was the controversial Patriarch of the Romanian Orthodox Church from 1986 to 2007. He gets points for ecumenicalism, as stated in this paragraph from his wiki:

A promoter of ecumenic dialog, Patriarch Teoctist invited Pope John Paul II to visit Romania. This was the first visit of a Pope of Rome in a predominantly Eastern Orthodox country after the Great Schism of 1054.

However, he was plagued by controversy, as again stated in the wiki:

After 1989, various accusations were made in the Romanian press, including that he was a collaborator of the Securitate, the political police in Romania, that he allegedly was homosexual and that as “legionnaire” (member of the “Legion of the Archangel Michael”, an extreme-right Orthodox nationalistic movement of the interwar period, associated politically with the Iron Guard) he participated in the vandalizing of a Bucharest synagogue. The last two accusations were based on a 1950 file found in the archives of the Security. The official response of the Orthodox Church was that the file was made by the Soviets with the intent of destroying the Romanian Orthodox Church.

Nevertheless, he was still an ecumenicalist to the end, condemning the recent Vatican document on other Christians. See this excerpt from Today’s THV:

The head of Romania’s dominant Orthodox Church condemns the paper as “brutal” and says it makes inter-church dialogue difficult. Patriarch Teoctist denounces the document’s contention that other Christian communities are either defective or are not true churches and that Catholicism provides the only true path to salvation. Teoctist says such statements “do not make God happy” and pit Christian churches against one other.

Good for him!

  1. valentin’s avatar

    Thanks for link-back, Marde.

    I answered to you here :

  2. Mardé’s avatar

    Glad to do it, Valentin. I read your answer, linked to above, and will need to reread before answering your answer.


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