Christian Orthodox Category Iiib

ancient canons but were moved by 'a desire for novelty', putting in serious jeopardy proper ecclesiastical order/7 The crisis of the holy chrism delayed for three years the canonical recognition of autocephaly to which Romania, as a sovereign kingdom, was now entitled. This was only granted after the head of the Romanian Church, Kallinikos ofHungro-Wallachia, in agreement with the Romanian government, wrote to the patriarch Joachim IV, who on 25 April i885 duly acceded to their request for autocephalous status with yet another synodal tome.iS

The nationalist drive in the Romanian Church continued unabated, as scholarship attempted to re-create a distinct Romanian ecclesiastical past/9 During the period i892-ig>o5 new conflicts arose between the churches of Romania and Constantinople over ecclesiastical jurisdiction in the regions of Epiros and Macedonia. The Romanians raised claims over Vlach-speaking communities, which they wanted to bring under the control of Romanian authorities on account of linguistic affinities.2o In i925 the assumption of patriarchal status by the autocephalous Romanian Church came about after consultations, which secured the ready agreement of Constantinople. The elevation of the auto-cephalous church of Romania to patriarchal status was the last symbolic act in the articulation and assertion of the national community of the Greater Romania produced by World War I.

The Bulgarian exarchate

The most serious of the conflicts that dramatised the incompatibility between the Orthodox canonical order and the aspirations of nationalism in the Orthodox Church arose over the question of the Bulgarian Church. Although the problem came to a head in the third quarter ofthe nineteenth century and led to a painful schism that took a long time to heal, the conflict was long in the making as a by-product of the growth of the Bulgarian national movement. The intensity of the confrontation, especially after the schism was finalised in i872, was such that it coloured the whole understanding of the past and projected backwards confrontations, antagonisms and sensitivities that essentially wiped out the very meaning of Christian history in south-eastern Europe.

17 Vapheidis, 'EKKAroiaoTiKi), iii-b', 595.

18 For a general survey M. Pacurariu, Istoria Bisericii Ortodoxe Romane (Bucharest, i994), iii, i26-42.

19 See especially N. Iorga, Istoria Bisericii Romanesti si a viefii religioase a Romanilor, second edition (Bucharest: Ministry of Religions, i928), i-ii.

20 Vapheidis, 'EKKAroiaoTiKi), iii-b', i94-2o5.

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