The two jurisdictions are sometimes distinguished as '''ROCOR (V)''' and '''ROCOR (L)''', the initial in parentheses referring to the [[primate]] of each group.
The ROCE was led by Metropolitan [[Vitaly (Ustinov) of New York]], who had retired as the primate of the ROCOR, but passed away on [[September 25]], 2006. Upon the formation of the ROCE Metropolitan Vitaly was declared by the ROCE to have been retired forcibly by his enemies in ROCOR and then removed to Canada, where he governed the ROCE. It is reported by critics of this jurisdiction that the aged Vitaly was kidnapped and was essentially a figurehead, being unfit for [[bishop|episcopal]] governance. Courts in Canada and New York have rejected this claim after taking into account multiple court-mandated psychiatric evaluations.<ref>New York Supreme Court, Part 34, Index No. 500180/2001, Chemodakov
V. Oustinow, p. 11</ref>
According to its website, the ROCE currently has 8 [[parish]]es, missions and home [[chapel]]s, along with one convent, in the United States; 8 parishes, missions and chapels, along with 2 [[monasticism|monastic]] [[skete]]s, in Canada; 2 parishes and one convent in South America; 8 parishes in Europe; and a "[[deanery]]" of [[clergy]] and monastics in Russia. The ROCE also has a handful of clergy and laymen throughout the world which hold allegiance to it but may not have any parish associated with them.