The Resolution of the Extraordinary Assembly of the Diocese of Sydney, Australia and New Zealand

(Held on December 22, 2005, at Holy Protection Cathedral in the God-preserved city of Melbourne)

The delegates attending this Assembly, representing the parishes, communities, monasteries and convents, heard the Epistle of His Eminence Metropolitan Laurus to the Assembly. The placid, calm and loving tone of the Epistle, and His Eminence's mentioning of the possibility of Eucharistic communion with the Moscow Patriarchate only on the condition that all questions separating us are resolved in accordance with our positions of principle, once more inspired and strengthened the trust we have in the wise leadership of our First Hierarch.

With a feeling of gratitude and loyalty, the Assembly wishes His Eminence, the Helmsman sent by the Lord God, strength and steadiness in steering the Ship of the Church Abroad to a successful goal indicated by God.

Hearing the lectures delivered by the Secretary of the Commission on talks with the Moscow Patriarchate and by the member of the Pre-Council Committee preparing the IV All-Diaspora Council, and discussing all the questions troubling the delegates themselves, after moderate debate, we found it necessary to note that the Diocesan Assembly was attended by delegates of parishes and monasteries of the Diocese of Sydney, Australia and New Zealand. Based on their opinions and statements, the Assembly expresses the hope that the process of spiritual reconciliation with the Moscow Patriarchate would develop at a moderate pace. Among the questions of spiritual principle, the first that requires resolution is the role of the active participation of the Moscow Patriarchate, through its representatives, in the World Council of Churches.

We think that unity must occur organically, naturally and in an unforced way. Without a doubt, this is possible only through the presence of zealous and loving attitude towards the duty of serving the Truth.

We appeal to the Council of Bishops of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia with the request that they not neglect our opinion and desire to avert any divisions in our Church.

We call upon our flock to pray to the Lord in earnest that His holy will for all of us be done!