...TNH: What is the position of the Patriarchate of Moscow on the issue of the Orthodox Diaspora?
Hilarion: In the Russian Orthodox Church we believe that in the Diaspora it is possible to establish Canonical Orthodox Churches if there is agreement in the Orthodox populations of the particular countries. On this basis we granted autocephaly to the Orthodox Church in America in 1970. But now the Orthodox churches are coming closer together and we are commonly decided that the granting of autocephaly should be a matter of Panorthodox concern and that Tomes of Autocephaly should be signed by all the Primates of All the Orthodox Churches. In fact we agreed on a different model from that which existed before. We also agreed to establish Episcopal Assemblies in the Diaspora to facilitate cooperation among the different jurisdictions.
TNH: With this new decision are you saying that the Ecumenical Patriarchate no longer has the historical and canonical privilege of being the only one to grant Autocephaly?
Hilarion: This seems to be the consensus of all the representatives of all the Orthodox churches, that autocephaly should be granted with the agreement of all the Orthodox Churches. It can be proclaimed by the Ecumenical Patriarch, but the Tome will be signed by all the Primates.
To my distant, uninformed ear, this sounds like, we should never have granted the Tome. The next step would be Moscow's agreement with the other Patriarchates that the Tome was not originally theirs to give. The persistence of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad suggests revocation is a matter of time.