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  • January 28, 2008

    Friends:

    In December, Archbishop Vsevolod of Scopelos–a leading Orthodox Ecumenist
    and the recipient of the Consortium Ecumenism Award last spring–died after
    a bout with cancer. May he rest in peace.

    The Archbishop was a wonderful man. A festschrift in honor of his 80th Birthday–a
    book filled with scholarly articles and letters of congratulation–was completed and presented
    to him by its editor Jack Figel shortly before the Archbishop took a turn for the worse.

    In that volume I remarked:

    “Archbishop Vsevolod of Scopelos has been a prime advocate for Christian unity—particularly the unity of East and West–for the last two decades. His collected works express his interest in church history, ecclesiology, the church in Ukraine and many other topics.[1] He modestly says that he offers “thoughts and pastoral reflections that might be inspirational and perhaps food for thought for the next generation….”[2]

    The Archbishop is a man of gentle honesty. He names the problems that face us on the road to Christian unity. He does so with great respect for all.

    His approach reminds me of humility in its deepest sense. It seems to me that this virtue is crucial to attaining unity. Humility is a gift from God that we should continue to seek—as has Archbishop Vsevolod.”

    I hope that, God willing, readers of this Blog might have the humility to
    advance the cause of Christian unity.

    Peace,
    John

    [1] His works are collected in We Are All Brothers (Fairfax, Virginia: Eastern Christian Publications, 1999) and We Are All Brothers- 2 (Fairfax, Virginia: Eastern Christian Publications, 2006). 2] We Are All Brothers, vii.