Monastery Asked GOA to Allow Rymer to Remain a Priest?

December 5, 2008

Related Document: Doe v. Metropolis of San Francisco: Deposition of Metropolitan Gerasimos Michaleas

During the deposition of Metropolitan Gerasimos Michaleas, a portion of which was filed with the San Francisco Superior Court in the case of Doe v. Metropolis of San Francisco, the hierarch was questioned concerning a letter from the Monastery of St. John of San Francisco. According to the transcript of the deposition, which was given on November 1, 2007, the letter was sent to Archbishop Demetrios Trakatellis of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese (GOA) in New York.

The Monastery of St. John, located in Manton, California, belongs to the Orthodox Church in America (OCA). Until recently, the abbot was Archimandrite Jonah Paffhausen. Paffhausen was selected as metropolitan of the OCA on November 12, 2008.

Doe's attorney, Terry Gross, first established with Michaleas that Michael Rymer was residing at the Monastery of St. John, and that Rymer had been defrocked by the GOA. Gross also asked if the metropolitan had ever seen the letter before. Michaleas responded that he had not. Doe's attorney's requested that Michaleas read the letter.

Gross then began another question, "And in this letter the Monastery of St. John of San Francisco is requesting the Archdiocese of the Greek Orthodox Church to assist so that - and I read from the next to last paragraph -- so that Father Rymer, quote, might retain priestly faculties…."

The remainder of that question, as well as the response, was not among the testimony filed with the court. The letter was also not among the documents available for public viewing.


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