Holy Synod; Most Holy Directing Synod

Name of the council by which the Churches of Russia and Greece, and other Orthodox churches are governed. In 1721 Peter the Great abolished the patriarchate at Moscow and established a Most Holy Directing Synod, absolutely dependent on the state, whose members were ecclesiastical and lay persons all appointed by the czar, having jurisdiction over all ecclesiastical matters. This council, which was adopted by the Greek Church in 1833, is considered a more democratic system of government, though scarcely in harmony with the strict monarchy of the Church Fathers, than the autocratic rule of the patriarch.

New Catholic Dictionary

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