Vissarion Apliaa. Photo of "Caucasian Knot"

16 September 2009, 18:00

Vissarion Apliaa: separation of Abkhazian Church from Georgian one is historically justified

Priest Vissarion Apliaa, leader of the Abkhazian Orthodox Church, believes that the decision on independence of the local church was historically motivated. "We just want to restore the historical justice; and nobody can challenge our decision. We've made a lawful canonical decision, and we've invented nothing," Father Vissarion said to the "Caucasian Knot" correspondent.

The head of the Abkhazian church has emphasized that the decision to rename the Sukhumi-Abkhazian Eparchy into the Abkhazian Orthodox Church was the decision suffered out by the orthodox laity directed "at restoration of destroyed inner world."

Vissarion Apliaa has noted that the Abkhazian Orthodox Church is going to officially address for support and help, first of all, to the Moscow Patriarchy.

"The Sukhumi-Abkhazian Eparchy is the legal successor of the Pitsunda Catholicosate. Our ancestors left the apostolic legend as their heritage to us. Our duty is to increase this spiritual wealth and hand it over to our descendants," Father Vissarion has emphasized.

Priest Vissarion Apliaa, head of the Abkhazian Orthodox Church, has treated the utterances of Georgiy Targamadze, leader of the Georgian "Christian Democratic Movement" that the decision of the Abkhazian clergy was "a result of pressure exerted by the Russian political elite" as proofless. Father Vissarion has advised Mr Targamadze "get more closely acquainted with the historical materials evidencing that the Abkhazian Church has ever been independent."

As reported by the "Rosbalt", Georgiy Targamadze, leader of the oppositional parliamentary party of Georgia "Christian Democratic Movement", had welcomed the position of the Moscow Patriarchy as to preservation of the borders of the Georgian Local Church.

The decision to rename the Sukhumi-Abkhazian Eparchy into the Abkhazian Orthodox Church with Sukhumi and Pitsunda Patriarchies was made on September, 15 at the meeting with participation of all Abkhazian clergy with the aim "to restore the Abkhazian Orthodox Church, which once had its local ecumenical value, but lost it in 1795."

In its turn, the Georgian Patriarchy has labelled the Abkhazian Church as "false" and stated that it had never existed and was an integral part of the Georgian Orthodox Church; therefore, nobody in the Orthodox world will recognizes it. As a confirmation, the Georgian party has noted that all the Abkhazian Orthodox culture has Georgian traces, and all the churches in the territory of Abkhazia are full of old-Georgian writings.

Author: Anzhela Kuchuberia; Source: CK correspondent

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