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Greek Orthodox and Catholic church merge in Puerto Rico

San Esperidion becomes the centre of a 'Greco-Catholic Byzantine community'

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The Vicar General of the Archdiocese, father Alberto Figueroa Morales and Archimandrite Peter DiLeo explain the Community agreement document between the two churches.

18 August 2017

A lot of water has gone under the bridge since the East-West schism of 1054 that saw the separation of the 'Roman' Catholic church from the 'Greek' Orthodox one and if anyone needs proof of that, need not look any further than Puerto Rico.

There, in Trujillo Alto, the Pan Orthodox Church of San Espiridion (St. Spyridon), built in the 1930s by missionaries from by the Archdiocese of Mexico of the Greek Orthodox Church in the diaspora, merged with the Catholic church to form a 'Greco-Catholic Byzantine community'. Practically this meant a transition of authority from the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople to the Archbishop of San Juan of Puerto Rico.

The welcome ceremony was presided over by the Vicar General of the Archdiocese, father Alberto Figueroa Morales on behalf of the Archbishop Latin Archbishop, Metropolitan Roberto González, who was commemorated along with Pope Francis.

Despite being part of the Catholic church, the priests and parishioners will continue celebrating the Divine Liturgy and sacred mysteries according to the Byzantine tradition, and the continuous liturgy in the Church Slavonic language, English and Spanish. They will also keep following the old (Julian) calendar instead of the Gregorian one.

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Comments

PhotiK, the article you link to clearly says the parish was under the Ecumenical Patriarch. I could not find anywhere in the article that the pairsh was given permission to go to the RC or to any other jusrisdiction? Have you heard of Esfigmenou Monastery? The EP does not take kindly to institutions under his jurisdiction jumping ship. I'll keep my eye on the EP's web site to see if they remove San Espiridon from its list of parishes.
PhotiK, not so! Where did you get your info? The Ecumenical Patriarchate's website lists St. Spyridon in Puerto Rico as one of its parishes under the Holy Metropolis of Mexico. (see https://www.patriarchate.org/holy-metropolis-of-mexico ) The below excerpt is taken from that linked page. Πουέρτο Ρίκο 25. Ἱερός Ναός Ἁγ. Σπυρίδωνος ἐν Πουέρτο Ρίκο. St. Spyridon Greek Orthodox Mission. Ταχ. διεύθυνσις: Urb. Rio Cristal, Encantada, RJ13 Via Amazonas, Trujillo Alto, Puerto Rico. Tηλ.-Fax (787) 760.7476. Ἱερατ. Προϊστάμενος: Πρεσβ. Πέτρος Dileo.
NO, the "church" was listed as part of the Greek Orthodox Church, but has official left and become schismatic. Their is no joint agreement. This "church" is a community parish that left one jurisdiction to join another. Please see article: https://holysynergy.wordpress.com/2017/07/11/breaking-news-the-orthodox-church-of-puerto-rico-enters-into-communion-with-the-catholic-church/
This is not a "greek Orthodox Church" but a self-named church that is Roman Catholic that performs that is a Uniate "byzantine rite" of the Roman Catholic Church. They use the Greek style of worship and have all the external features f the Greek orthodox Church, but have never been with or under a Greek Orthodox Church. Confusing, yes its the Catholic way of getting converts by creating a hybrid "church" with elements of both traditions.

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