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Not to be confused with the Orthodox Catholic Patriarchate of America who merged with The Holy Eatern Orthodox Catholic and Apostolic Church in North America
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Michael Kirkland uses this Church name and claims the title of Patriarch. The "ethnic" (or SCOBA) Orthodox do not recognize him or his title since he is part of the independent movement. There had been no orthodox patriarch in America until July 2003.
Reasons to disbelieve
Kirkland is married and the ethnic or scoba orthodox would not recgnize his claimed title.
Kirkland spent time in the Ohio State Prison according to the Ohio DOC and Ohio newspapers.
Kirkland claims to be the successor of the late Archbishop Peter Zhurawetsky of Rahway and Vineland, New Jersey. Abp. Peter used (or claimed to be associated with) a variety of 'church" names in N.J. such as the Church of the Visitation, Christ Catholic Church, Christ Orthodox Catholic Patriarchate and the Byelorussian Nat'l. Catholic Church. Having previously been asociated with the "Orthodox Catholic Patriarchate of America" in N.Y. but released from that Church he had also used that name for awhile. That Corporation was closed out due to failure to file the required annual reports many years before he died.
Kirkland's Church name is close to the original named church that was incorporated in NY in 1951 (and merged with THEOCACNA) but;
a. Kirkland's Ohio Church corporation was incorporated in 1999 by Kirkland and not Chartered by any Patriarch or synod
b. Kirkland was never a member of the synod of the 1951 Church he claims was Archbishop Peters Church and
c. Kirkland was ordained by the Maravite Old Catholic Church to (I believe Deacon and) priest. He even posted this on his website but left ut the "old catholic" part of the name. We have a letter from the ordaining Bishop who stated he also "Excommunicated" Kirkland. It appears Kirkland accepts the ordination but ignores the fact he was excommunicated and continues to claim his self-proclaimed "high office" of Patriarch.
It should also be noted that Kirkland has claimed to have been invited to meet the Ecumenical Patriarch and he posts a picture to "prove" his claim. You should consider the following before "believing your eyes".
1. Ethnic bishops have stated the Ecumenical Patriarch will not allow a clean shaven priest to approach him, let alone a "bishop".
2. The Greek Orthodox Archdiocese in NY has denied knowing "Patriarch" Michael Kirkland (in writing) and deny any knowledge of his Church (name) or communion with same.
3. It appears Michael has cut and pasted more than a few photos placing his face over the face of the bishop who was in that photo. In one case he posted a picture of himself with the previous Ecumenical Patriarch and His All Holiness Bartholomaios before he became the Ecumenical Patriarch meeting former President George Bush labeled circa 1970. The problem here is the presiding Bishop of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese in the US, former Archbishop Iakovos, was not pictured in Kirklands photo but under Kirklands chin (lower right) you could see the beard of Abp. Iakovos. We saved some copies of this picture.
In fact the rightful successor to Abp. Peter was Bishp Zieger of Colorado, who received from Abp. Peter the documents and other items the successor would receive.
Zieger later retired from office without a formal successor (as far as we know) and he returned to the Church of Rome as a layman. He died as a Catholic layman. On of the Bishops Zieger was main consecrator for was Bishop Don Hugh who remained in close contact with Bp. Zieger until his death.
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