NEW YORK: 12 September 2022
Archpastors of the Russian Church Abroad arrive in New York for a Council of Bishops
Having celebrated Divine Liturgy on 11 September, 2022, the feast day of the Beheading of St John the Baptist, many archpastors of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia headed for New York City to participate in its Council of Bishops. On Monday, 12 September, after divine service in St Sergius of Radonezh Chapel in the Synodal Residence, His Grace Bishop Nicholas of Manhattan, Acting Ruling Bishop of the Eastern American Diocese, will host a dinner for the Council’s participants.
The following day, after Divine Liturgy in the Synodal Cathedral of Our Lady “of the Sign” in the presence of the Kursk-Root Icon of the Mother of God, a moleben will be performed to the Most-Blessed Theotokos, to St Tikhon, Patriarch and Confessor of All Russia, and St John (Maximovich) of Shanghai and San Francisco the Miracle-worker.
After breakfast, the participants of the Council of Bishops will commence to the Synod meeting hall to open the Council, to elect a Presiding Officer, Secretary and counting committee, after which His Eminence Metropolitan Mark of Berlin and Germany, locum tenens of the Primate of ROCOR, since the repose of Metropolitan Hilarion (Kapral) of blessed memory, will deliver the keynote address. The hierarchs will then move to the Synodal Cathedral, where they will vote for a new Primate.
As explained by Archpriest Serafim Gan, Chancellor of the Synod of Bishops, the balloting will be held according to the order proposed by St John (Maximovich), in 1964, when Metropolitan Anastassy (Gribanovsky) of blessed memory, second Primate of the Church Abroad, retired. After a commemorative litiya for all the reposed leaders of the Russian Church Abroad, voting for the new Primate will begin by the submission of written ballot. A decree will then be prepared announcing the votes and an Act executed.
if one bishop receives at least 2/3 of the votes, he will be considered the victor. If no one candidate receives that majority of votes, then three of the bishops with the most votes cast for them will enter the second round of voting. "If during the second round, one of the candidates receives an absolute majority, he will be deemed the winner. If no candidate receives a majority, then the third round will include the names of the two bishops receiving the most votes," said the Chancellor.
The candidate receiving the most votes in the third round will then be considered the next Primate of ROCOR. Should the third round end in a tie, the election will take place by the drawing of lots, as occurred during the Local Church Council of 1917-1918 and during the Council of ROCOR in 1986, added Archpriest Serafim.