The Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of Spain and Portugal (Spanish: Asamblea episcopal ortodoxa de España y Portugal) consists of all the active Orthodox bishops serving Spain, Portugal, Andorra and Gibraltar, and representing multiple jurisdictions. It is not, properly speaking, a synod. It is one of several such bodies around the world which operate in the so-called "diaspora."


The assembly began when delegates from the 14 autocephalous Eastern Orthodox churches met at the Center of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Chambésy, Switzerland, on June 6–12, 2009.[1] At that time, the conference decided to sanction the establishment of episcopal assemblies in 12 regions of the so-called Eastern Orthodox diaspora which are beyond the boundaries of the autocephalous churches. Such assemblies have the authority to propose future administrative structures for the Church in their respective regions.


The current jurisdictions in the region include the following, ordered according to diptych:

Inaugural Assembly (2010)

The first act the Assembly took place in 2010 in the Holy Church Cathedral of Saints Andrew and Demetrius, in Madrid's Nicaragua Street. After a visit to the cathedral and the recitation of the Lord's Prayer, Metropolitan Polycarp, ex officio President of the Assembly, offered offered some words. He denied the Westerners' view of Orthodoxy as divided, since there is only one Orthodox Church, united in faith, sacraments, canons and sacred tradition. The apparent division is only administrative. He added, however, that the Church is indeed moving towards a Pan-Orthodoxy, from which is born the Orthodox Episcopal Assembly of Spain and Portugal.[2]

Father Demetrio (Rogelio) Sáez Carbó, Archimandrite of the Ecumenical Throne, in his capacity as secretary, was in charge of explaining the details of the configuration of the Episcopal Assembly, composed of Metropolitan Polycarp, of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, as president; Archbishop Nestor, of the Patriarchate of Moscow and All Russia, as vice-president; Bishop Lucas, of the Patriarchate of Serbia; Bishop Timothy, of the Patriarchate of Romania; and a prelate to be designated from the Patriarchate of Bulgaria. The seat was fixed at the offices of the Orthodox Archbishopric of Spain and Portugal in Madrid. To be part of the Assembly, the canonical Churches must fulfill two requirements: to have representation -at least one parish- in the Iberian countries and territories with the authorization of their Mother Church and to be registered in the Registry of Religious Entities of the Ministry of Justice.[2]

In recent years, the Orthodox community has grown exponentially in the Iberian Peninsula. It is estimated that, at present, there are about one and a half million Orthodox belonging to the different Patriarchates.[2]

See also


  1. ^ "The Orthodox Diaspora". Retrieved 2024-01-16.
  2. ^ a b c "La Asamblea Episcopal Ortodoxa de España y Portugal". (in Spanish). Retrieved 2024-01-18.