Beginnings

Autocephaly was granted to the Orthodox Church of Epirus in 1915 with a Tomos by Germanos V, Patriarch of Constantinople. The historical account can be found in Claude Chaussier's book “Le Royaume d’Epire , son Historie et sa Monarchie au XXI siécle”. Claude Chaussier was a professor at the University of Leuven and published the book in Brussels in 2003.

In 1922, the Orthodox Church of Albania obtained autocephaly and annexed, with the consent of the Albanian State, the Church of Epirus. The Albanian Church imposed Albanian as the liturgical language in place of Greek, which is the language of Epirus. The aim of the Albanian government, both during the republic and the monarchy, was to make the Greek-Epirot element disappear from both civil and religious life. When communism had ended in the early 1990s and churches were being rebuilt, Albania maintained its Muslim majority with a Roman Catholic minority in the north and Orthodox in the south.


The Ecumenical Patriarchate could not put in jeopardy the Orthodox Church that was being reborn in the country. Today, the reconstituted Orthodox Church in Albania is a pro-Albanian national Church. This is why H.R.H. Prince Davide Pozzi Sacchi of Santa Sofia's predecessor, Alexander of Epirus, had already supported a Church of Epirus in exile, somewhat like the Russian Orthodox Church in exile in the United States during the communist era.