The Catholicate of the West has issued a Perpetual Charter to the American World Patriarchates, a historic Orthodox federation of communions with which it has enjoyed intercommunion for several decades.
The AWP has been without an Apostolic Administrator since the death of Patriarch Yuri in 2013. However, it is not a federation that is dependent on a central administration, consisting instead of a loose grouping of independent patriarchs and their churches which call upon a common identity and heritage within the AWP.
Several clergy of the AWP have joined the Catholicate of the West recently and the issuing of a Perpetual Charter is intended to support their ministries and maintain their identity and heritage. It is open to other clergy of the AWP to join the Catholicate of the West should they wish, but it is also recognized that because of the diffuse and decentralized nature of the AWP there will be other clergy of the AWP who will be outside the Catholicate.
The Catholicate wishes to make its position clear on several issues that have been the source of controversy. Firstly, it has never been the case that the AWP has been the hereditary possession of the Ryzy family.
Secondly, there is no basis for the appointment of an Apostolic Administrator other than following his election by the AWP patriarchs worldwide in synod. The position of Apostolic Administrator will be vacant until such an eventuality.
Thirdly, Michael James Kline of Independence, Missouri, of whom we have written elsewhere, was never a member or patriarch of the AWP during the lifetime of Patriarch Yuri and has no legitimate authority over the AWP or its patriarchs, nor does he have the authority to appoint an Apostolic Administrator. Kline was consecrated by Patriarch Yuri, but as the document of consecration makes clear, this was for the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church and not for the AWP.