On 8 December 2016 the Synod of Bishops of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia finally relieved Archbishop Mark as ruling bishop of the Diocese of the British Isles and Ireland. In his letter, which he asked to be circulated, Archbishop Mark asked forgiveness of all for what he had said and done over the years that had hurt and aggravated his flock. He particularly regretted that his lack of pastoral oversight made two monastic communities in England turn their backs on him.
The First Hierarch of the Church, the Most Reverend Metropolitan Hilarion, is for the moment the new ruling bishop. The Diocese thus becomes stavropegic, as it had requested, and thus begins a new and dynamic period in its life.