Diplomacy, Geopolitics, and Global Orthodox Christianity in the Twenty-First Century

Author: Elizabeth Prodromou

November 20, 2023

Authored by Elizabeth Prodromou, visiting professor in the International Studies Program at Boston College, this Transatlantic Policy Network on Religion and Diplomacy policy brief analyzes the historical significance and current presence of Orthodox Churches in locations of key competition between the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and Russia, and in the great power rivalries of the twenty-first century. This raises important questions about the role and impact of Orthodox Churches in contemporary geopolitics. This policy brief illustrates how Kremlin-supported challenges by the Moscow Patriarchate to the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople, the global leader of a unified Orthodox Church that endorses universal human rights and rule of law, have provoked intense ecclesiastical conflicts within Orthodoxy over institutional, normative, and material resources.

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