The Holy Synod, a council of Orthodox churches, that took place in Crete on June 20-26 ended with a declaration of unity. In its message, it states that the “key priority of the Council was to proclaim the unity of the Orthodox Church… The Orthodox Autocephalous Churches do not constitute a federation of Churches, but the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church.”
The council took place without four out of the 14 national Orthodox Churches. These were the Patriarchate of the Russian Orthodox Church, the Georgian and Bulgarian Orthodox Churches, as well as the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch and All the East. Russia’s international newsagency RIA Novosti reported on a source from the Russian Orthodox Church stating that the document with conclusions from the Holy Synod was being carefully examined.