Presentation of the Patriarchate
The Orthodox Patriarchate of Nations does not result from the importation and implantation in a recent past of realities foreign to the ancestral customs of our country, and which remain so.
These realities are embodied in the Orthodox Churches of emigration, which have their full justification for foreigners who aspire to keep their own customs.
Our Church, on the contrary, is a "local production", a fruit that has matured for a long time over the ages. She has benefited from exactly the same influences which, in the richness of their variety, have made up the soul of our people, and she has applied them to divine service. She is par excellence, native.
The Church of the Patriarchate of Nations is in each country a local Church, like all those which have appeared in all nations, first within the Roman Empire, then outside its limits.
This local Church flourished in Gaul from the beginning of Christianity, she knew how to make prevail in its time the sound orthodox doctrine: its contribution to the fight against Arianism was exemplary. She tried to resist, on many occasions against the transformation of the duty of "presidency in charity" recognized in the Church of Rome, into a papal power which became more and more centralizing and domineering.
More recently, the trend that she embodied in spite of all obstacles led to the emergence, after several others, of Father Louis Irénée Winnaert (1880-1937), a Catholic priest who strove to rediscover the authenticity of the Church of Christ, as expressed in the writings of the Apostle Paul, and was the co-founder of the Western Orthodox Church.
She refers to the traditional Orthodoxy, to which she aspired, in the person of Eugraph Kovalesky (1905-1970), who arrived in France in 1920 with his parents after the Russian Revolution, for his part felt the fervent desire of '' find there the traces of the Undivided Church, and which undertook, thanks to the Brotherhood of Saint Photius, founded on its initiative in 1925, to restore the Orthodox Church of the Gauls with its liturgy, as it had existed in the first millennium, not as an archaeological reconstruction, which several liturgists of the 18th and 19th centuries had already achieved, but vitally, according to its spirit, its rites and its constitutions adapted to contemporary conditions.
The ancient local Church was born again in France, with the blessing of the Russian Orthodox Church, in 1936 which, as we declare it "accepts what the Orthodox Church accepts and rejects what She rejects".
The Orthodox Patriarchate of Nations, present on five continents, is therefore an Orthodox Church confessing the same faith as the Greek, Russian, Romanian, Bulgarian, Serbian Orthodox Churches, etc.
Its dogmas, its theology and its faith do not differ in any way from those of the Eastern Orthodox Churches.
Orthodoxy means righteous (or righteous) glorification, presupposing life in "true faith". She is a "Catholic" Church like all the Orthodox Churches and like the Roman Church. “Catholicity” in fact means “universal fullness of the Truth” opposed to any limitation.
It is also a Church of France, that is to say a local Church according to the principle of unity in diversity which governs the organization of Orthodox Churches. Thus, according to the same principle, she never used for her worship any language other than the mother tongue of the people: in France, French. This applies with the same principles in each country where it is present.
It applied itself to restoring certain local liturgical uses specific to the West but abandoned in recent centuries and unknown to the Eastern Churches, uses compatible with the integrity of the Orthodox faith and with the tradition of the undivided Church of the former. millennium, and which help the faithful to become more intimately aware of the liturgical mysteries.
It does not represent, as we have said, an archaeological return to a state of the Church existing in the 7th and 7th centuries in Gaul, but the visible resurgence of an underground current which has never ceased to manifest itself through various personalities, and which has its source in the patrimony of the undivided Church.