THE ERROR OF ECUMENOCLASM
Ecumenoclasm is a heresy denying the possibility of salvation to the bulk of humanity. It violates several fundamental principles not only of Orthodox and Catholic but also of core Christian theology. It denies that our Creator is a compassionate and loving God who seeks salvation for all who call upon his name (Romans 10:13). Ecumenoclasm ultimately turns God into a cruel divine caricature who creates humans, whose only final destiny can be eternal torment. This is not at all the Christian understanding of God as the lover of humankind, the merciful and compassionate one, the benefactor of our souls.
Christianity has had many forms, names, structures and traditions throughout history – all of which are equal in the heart of Christ: My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? (John 14:2). The true church is not an institution or mega-corporation. It neither consists of artificially created synods nor exclusive conferences. It is the community of all believers, transcending denominational and man-made boundaries.
Hence, all who confess to Christ are naturally identified as brothers and sisters: Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom (Luke 12:32). Thus, we neither seek nor require anyone’s recognition.
There is only one Church: the community of all believers realizing the relativity of ethnic, historical, cultural and denominational labels. We therefore must respect and honor all Christian traditions, whether they are congruent with our own inherited or adopted theology, whether they are large denominations or small jurisdictions, whether they are traditional or progressive, independent or established. Despite these differences, it is the command of our Lord to act as brothers and sisters and to treat each other as being part of the loving family in Christ: His Holy Church.