Prokopios' "suspension" notice of Haros

Prokopios’ “suspension” notice of Haros

And the saga continues… and Mr Kanavas’ response is worthy of all the accolades that a kindergarten playground might bestow.

As many of you have probably seen, Mr Kanavas’ has his response to our previous post up on various Facebook pages around the place, including Adelaide Greek Orthodox Youth (see right).

Apparently we have it all backwards. Haros didn’t suspend Prokopios – Prokopios and a couple of his friends suspended Haros! And in fact, they did this in a letter sent to Haros a couple of weeks ago!

So should we believe this letter? A letter that has:

Compare this with the suspension notice that we produced, which was signed, dated and appeared on official letterhead… there are so many things wrong with Prokopios’ letter it is difficult to know where to start, but let’s try:

  • Prokopios has exclusive control of Haros’ web site. He can put whoever he wants there and pretend that they are part of the synod. (This is quite obvious when you look at the photos page and see that 1/3 of the photos feature Mr Kanavas – this fits with his egomaniacal personality.)
  • No signatures. Who knows if Evangelos, Alexandros and Volodmyr actually support Prokopios’ action, or for that matter (given the previous point) if they are part of Haros’ synod, or in fact if they even exist?
  • There are only four “bishops” named – not enough for a majority. Supposing for a moment that they do actually support the letter & actually are on Haros’ synod, then there’s still not enough support to make their action count. According to the web site, there are eight bishops in the synod (not counting the deceased patriarch and deceased former “archbishop” Dionysios) – the four names given don’t constitute a majority of votes. Wouldn’t common sense dictate that they need at least a majority of votes to support an action as serious as suspending the president of the synod?
  • Why do we only hear about Prokopios’ suspension of Haros now? The suspension allegedly took place two weeks prior to Prokopios posting the notice on Facebook. Did Mr Kanavas really suspend his own “archbishop” and switch to another synod without thinking to tell any of his flock (ie, GOCSA) for two weeks??? This would be severe dereliction of his duty as a bishop! More likely, the reason that we didn’t hear about it until 2nd of November is because Prokopios only thought of it after he was suspended by Haros (31st of October), and so Prokopios tried to back-date it as a smokescreen.
  • The agreement was between the synod and GOCSA. It was not a personal agreement between Haros and Prokopios. What then gives Prokopios the right to act unilaterally on behalf of GOCSA to break this agreement and leave the synod, apparently without the permission or approval of the GOCSA constituency or of its executive committee?
  • How will GOCSA’s now claim to be canonical? Joining Haros’ synod was supposed to make GOCSA canonical (so GOCSA claimed, even though this claim was wrong), and now they are not even a part of that synod. What is their cover story now to claim to be canonical? What new sophistry will they come up with to try and claim that their sacraments are recognised in Greece and the rest of the Orthodox world?
Prokopios with His Beatitude Patriarch Theolphilos III of Jerusalem

Picture of Prokopios as a deacon before he was deposed, with Patriarch Theophilos III (the current Patriarch, whose  synod deposed Prokopios from the diaconate). Source:  Haros’ Prokopios’ web site photos page

The sad thing is, even if this letter was legitimate, it still doesn’t look good for Prokopios – after all, if Haros was so hopelessly and obviously corrupt that Prokopios had to suspend him after less than three months, then how did he not notice this three months ago, prior to his ordination? The only possible conclusions are that Mr Kanavas either:

  • is a complete fool for being taken in by Haros in the first place,
  • didn’t do his due diligence when checking up on Haros,
  • knew about Haros’ corruption but turned a blind eye to it so that he could get “ordained”, or
  • possibly all of the above.

None of these conclusions looks particularly good for Prokopios (nor for the GOCSA executive, who supported his move to join with Haros).

Prokopios’ misconduct

While we’re on the topic, we have some more information about some of the reasons that Haros alluded to as to why Prokopios was suspended. Haros wanted proof of Mr Kanavas’ age, ordination and tertiary education before he would ordain him. 

Of course, those who have been reading this blog since the beginning will know why this was a fatal and foolish mistake by Haros – Prokopios still hasn’t sent him the relevant documentation and in fact never intended to send it to him, because he either doesn’t have it or it would incriminate him.

  • With respect to his age, Mr Kanavas is reported in a Feb 2012 Advertiser article as being 25 years of age. That would mean he is probably 27 now. Thus he doesn’t meet the minimum age requirement for an Orthodox bishop (which is 30 years according to the canons). Why Haros is suddenly interested in the canons of the Church being followed is a great mystery to us…
  • With respect to his tertiary qualifications, we know he doesn’t have any even though he once claimed to on Facebook.
  • With respect to his official ordination papers, given that he was deposed from the diaconate and ordained to the priesthood by an uncanonical group (and then deposed from the priesthood by that same group), he again doesn’t have any.

Prokopios has responded to the above requests (which are entirely reasonable requests) with threats of legal action.

If Haros had known all of this before 11th of August he wouldn’t have ordained Prokopios. Of course, this just goes to show that Haros is a fool also, because he was in fact comprehensively warned of all this prior to the “ordination” but trusted in Prokopios’ promises to provide the information anyway.

Brothers and sisters, it is sad that this soap opera continues to drag the good name of the Orthodox Church through the mud. We pray that one day soon GOCSA wake up to this man and his cunning ways.