July 12, 2013
New York City: An Extraordinary Session of the Synod of Bishops was held

On Wednesday, July 10, an extraordinary session of the Synod of Bishops of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia was held, presided over by its First Hierarch, His Eminence Hilarion, Metropolitan of Eastern America & New York. Participating in the meeting were permanent members of the Synod of Bishops: His Eminence Mark, Archbishop of Berlin, Germany & Great Britain; His Eminence Kyrill, Archbishop of San Francisco & Western America; His Eminence Gabriel, Archbishop of Montreal & Canada, and His Grace Peter, Bishop of Cleveland, Administrator of the Diocese of Chicago & Mid-America.

Deliberating on the matter of Bishop Jerome of Manhattan, the Synod of Bishops made a decision as follows:

"During a meeting of the Synod of Bishops on Wednesday, July 10, 2013, presided over by the First Hierarch of the Russian Church Abroad, A DECISION WAS MADE: on the activities of Bishop Jerome of Manhattan, Vicar of the President for the Administration of Western Rite Parishes.

After exhaustive deliberation, IT WAS DECREED:

1) To halt the ordination of new clergymen for parishes adhering to the Western Rite.

2) To censure Bishop Jerome for his willfulness in administering the parishes adhering to the Western Rite, and in performing various ecclesial services not approved by the Synod of Bishops, and for criticizing his brethren in letters to clergy and laity.

3) To deny recognition of the ordination of a group of individuals by Bishop Jerome during a single divine service, and to regularize them following a thorough examination of the candidates.

4) To release Bishop Jerome from all duties, including those of Vicar of the President in administering Western Rite parishes, designating him as retired without the right to serve in the Synodal Cathedral of the Sign in New York, or to perform ordinations or award clergymen, and designating his place of residence at St. Vladimir Memorial Church of the Millennium of the Baptism of Russia in Jackson, NJ.

5) To bless Bishop Jerome to perform divine services within the confines of the Eastern American Diocese with the consent of its Ruling Bishop.

6) To release Monk Anthony (Bondi) from all of his administrative duties and from the spiritual ministry to the Vicariate of Western Rite Parishes.

7) To establish a commission to examine the means of integrating clergymen and communities of the Western Rite into the liturgical life of the Russian Orthodox Church, consisting of: Metropolitan Hilarion of Eastern America & New York, President; Bishop George of Mayfield, Vicar of the Eastern American Diocese; Archpriest David Straut of the Eastern American Diocese, and Archpriest Anthony Nelson of the Mid-American Diocese.

8) To address an epistle to the clergymen and communities of the Western Rite regarding the need for them to adopt the order of divine services of the Eastern Orthodox Catholic Church, while preserving, when necessary, certain particularities of the Western Rite.

9) To emphasize our adherence to the rules and traditions of the Eastern Orthodox Catholic Church in general and of the Russian Orthodox Church in particular.

10) To deem this decree immediately valid and to submit it to the members of the Council of Bishops in the form of a questionnaire for confirmation."

The meeting concluded with the singing of "It is Truly Meet."

Official website of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia