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liefern
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« on: August 17, 2014, 02:09:53 PM »

Hi. Building a bit on this thread here ( http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,60201.0.html ) about the GOC et al., I wonder if any of you can help me think a bit, by and by, about this general topic. Perhaps if we avoid the typical inflammatory things it won't have to be budged over to the private area.

What do you estimate is the prognosis of the GOC, SiR, Metropolia, and other Orthodox who reject modernism, ecumenism, and use of new calendar? I ask because my experience with the Russian church in particular tells me that I could potentially be happy there. I don't think it's anything like the Novus Ordo in the Catholic church, where what you see just showing up is enough to scandalize. But I would be unable to go to the main churches if I enter through the GOC et al., because they are schismatic [or are so labeled]. So I'd be limited to those more traditional churches. On the other hand, maybe it doesn't matter. I certainly prefer the old calendar, and if I'm trying to fast e.g. for Advent I'd rather not hear in church that 'maybe for the 24 of December you could try giving up chocolate'. I'd rather be with other fasting people. Yet again, I don't want my Orthodoxy to be, shall we say, a distraction. I just want it to be something I am, as it is for normal Orthodox. If I go to these smaller groups, there is more risk of personal psychology, obsession, and so on. A further complication is that a GOC-type place is actually closer to me than the Russians. Furthermore, I dislike pews and organs, and would like very much to have the more traditional Orthodox experience, if possible!

So can you help me think about this at all?
« Last Edit: August 17, 2014, 02:11:39 PM by liefern » Logged
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« Reply #1 on: August 18, 2014, 09:14:37 PM »

I don't feel very qualified to help you here, and the forum rules say we aren't supposed to proselytize, but maybe I can say that I like Russian churches, too.

Note that the word "traditional", like "canonical" is applied differently depending on who is talking.

That said, I also like being in a jurisdiction that is "traditional" in the way you seem to be using the word. I'm not sure I understand if there is something about the Russian church you have experienced that is not traditional enough for you? Do they really have pews and/or an organ? Which calendar do they use? Do they offer chocolate on the 24 of December?

About Orthodoxy being a distraction, weird psychology or an obsession, well, even "traditional" Orthodoxy still seems pretty crazy to me sometimes, but I prefer at least to be crazy in the same way as a couple hundred million people in this life are (at least nominally), together with those departed this life and the bodiless powers  angelangelangel
« Last Edit: August 18, 2014, 09:29:54 PM by Georgii » Logged

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« Reply #2 on: August 18, 2014, 10:47:05 PM »

What do you estimate is the prognosis of the GOC, SiR, Metropolia, and other Orthodox who reject modernism, ecumenism, and use of new calendar?

More infighting and splintering.
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« Reply #3 on: August 18, 2014, 11:11:29 PM »

What do you estimate is the prognosis of the GOC, SiR, Metropolia, and other Orthodox who reject modernism, ecumenism, and use of new calendar?

More infighting and splintering.

This is a covert issues thread. Since you're not Orthodox (or an enquirer/catechumen) could you please refrain from commenting on topics such as these?
« Last Edit: August 18, 2014, 11:13:38 PM by Sam G » Logged

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« Reply #4 on: August 18, 2014, 11:15:31 PM »

Hi. Building a bit on this thread here ( http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,60201.0.html ) about the GOC et al., I wonder if any of you can help me think a bit, by and by, about this general topic. Perhaps if we avoid the typical inflammatory things it won't have to be budged over to the private area.

What do you estimate is the prognosis of the GOC, SiR, Metropolia, and other Orthodox who reject modernism, ecumenism, and use of new calendar? I ask because my experience with the Russian church in particular tells me that I could potentially be happy there. I don't think it's anything like the Novus Ordo in the Catholic church, where what you see just showing up is enough to scandalize. But I would be unable to go to the main churches if I enter through the GOC et al., because they are schismatic [or are so labeled]. So I'd be limited to those more traditional churches. On the other hand, maybe it doesn't matter. I certainly prefer the old calendar, and if I'm trying to fast e.g. for Advent I'd rather not hear in church that 'maybe for the 24 of December you could try giving up chocolate'. I'd rather be with other fasting people. Yet again, I don't want my Orthodoxy to be, shall we say, a distraction. I just want it to be something I am, as it is for normal Orthodox. If I go to these smaller groups, there is more risk of personal psychology, obsession, and so on. A further complication is that a GOC-type place is actually closer to me than the Russians. Furthermore, I dislike pews and organs, and would like very much to have the more traditional Orthodox experience, if possible!

So can you help me think about this at all?

Go to a couple of churches and see how they strike you. If you find genuine faith and piety, stick with it.
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« Reply #5 on: August 18, 2014, 11:53:36 PM »

Sam has it right...


GO.....see...


if you want the old calendar there are plenty of those, and plenty that will seem traditional enough without having to specifically decide that you want to go the 'True Orthodox' route.

Honestly, I think you have gotten bogged down in all these things, and forgotten to go, concentrate on following God, and the rest will start to take care of itself.
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« Reply #6 on: August 19, 2014, 03:45:21 AM »

This is a covert issues thread.

Yeah, if we have overt issues we should take them elsewhere  Smiley

Anyway, what others have said here reminds me that what we are for is more important than what we are against.

Happy Feast of the Transfiguration! (old calendar)
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« Reply #7 on: August 19, 2014, 06:25:54 AM »

I know of one young man who as a teen went with a group of Monastics on a pilgrimage  to Romania and Mount Athos and returned with the belief that Traditional Orthodoxy could not be lived in the United States and eventually left the Church after running through many of the "traditionalist" jurisdictions here in the U.S. He was very bitter and unhappy.

On the other hand I have been very happy everyday since my conversion to the Orthodox Faith in 1988, I  have seen thousands of Orthodox Christians, both Old and new Calendar who have such a joy in their lives at having found the true faith. In my many moves (my job has caused me to move 8 times over those years) I have had the blessings to live in towns that only had a ROCOR (Old Calendar) missions, towns the closest church was 100 miles roundtrip, and towns that had Greek and Antiochian Churches (New Calendar) and you know something? They all  have a joy of being united in ONE faith, ONE Church---be happy with what you have and look at yourself as an American who is Orthodox and attend the Orthodox Church that is where you are living---you will be much happier and gain joy that passes understanding---I know  I have!
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« Reply #8 on: August 19, 2014, 06:41:53 AM »

I know of one young man who as a teen went with a group of Monastics on a pilgrimage  to Romania and Mount Athos and returned with the belief that Traditional Orthodoxy could not be lived in the United States and eventually left the Church after running through many of the "traditionalist" jurisdictions here in the U.S. He was very bitter and unhappy.

The trouble with that unfortunate boy is he's not unique.

On the other hand I have been very happy everyday since my conversion to the Orthodox Faith in 1988, I  have seen thousands of Orthodox Christians, both Old and new Calendar who have such a joy in their lives at having found the true faith. In my many moves (my job has caused me to move 8 times over those years) I have had the blessings to live in towns that only had a ROCOR (Old Calendar) missions, towns the closest church was 100 miles roundtrip, and towns that had Greek and Antiochian Churches (New Calendar) and you know something? They all  have a joy of being united in ONE faith, ONE Church---be happy with what you have and look at yourself as an American who is Orthodox and attend the Orthodox Church that is where you are living---you will be much happier and gain joy that passes understanding---I know I have!

Sounds like your and their hearts are in the right place.
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« Reply #9 on: August 19, 2014, 08:09:30 AM »

Jurisdictional differences and disagreements, are, ISTM, family disagreements, many are anomalies of immigration patterns and unique historical circumstances. Other than those who have, for various reasons, chosen to separate themselves, we are all together in the Faith once delivered to the Apostles, no matter if we have baklava or banana pudding at potluck dinners.
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« Reply #10 on: August 19, 2014, 08:13:50 AM »

Hi. Building a bit on this thread here ( http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,60201.0.html ) about the GOC et al., I wonder if any of you can help me think a bit, by and by, about this general topic. Perhaps if we avoid the typical inflammatory things it won't have to be budged over to the private area.

What do you estimate is the prognosis of the GOC, SiR, Metropolia, and other Orthodox who reject modernism, ecumenism, and use of new calendar? I ask because my experience with the Russian church in particular tells me that I could potentially be happy there. I don't think it's anything like the Novus Ordo in the Catholic church, where what you see just showing up is enough to scandalize. But I would be unable to go to the main churches if I enter through the GOC et al., because they are schismatic [or are so labeled]. So I'd be limited to those more traditional churches. On the other hand, maybe it doesn't matter. I certainly prefer the old calendar, and if I'm trying to fast e.g. for Advent I'd rather not hear in church that 'maybe for the 24 of December you could try giving up chocolate'. I'd rather be with other fasting people. Yet again, I don't want my Orthodoxy to be, shall we say, a distraction. I just want it to be something I am, as it is for normal Orthodox. If I go to these smaller groups, there is more risk of personal psychology, obsession, and so on. A further complication is that a GOC-type place is actually closer to me than the Russians. Furthermore, I dislike pews and organs, and would like very much to have the more traditional Orthodox experience, if possible!

So can you help me think about this at all?

Go to a couple of churches and see how they strike you. If you find genuine faith and piety, stick with it.

In the Russian church here in Vienna, Austria, on Jaurèsgasse (street), today they had the Holy Transfiguration. They have a very vibrant church there. I would say about 180 people showed up, and recall that this is a normal workday. Children, infants, every age group represented. Five priests or more (not sure of all their ranks), a skilled choir, and, since I've been there about five times now, I'm starting to be recognized. I tried to mention to one of them that I'm thinking of being a catechumen in the Metropolia, that's Met. John ( http://orthodoxmetropolia.org/ ), do you know it? Anyway she didn't know what I was talking about. As a relative newcomer it's hard for me to size up the relative significance of the various disagreements. Of course some will say that the three I name above are schismatic, but everyone is somebody's schismatic. The Church has seen many conflicts and subsequent agreements reached. The three offer more insulation from ecumenism and modernism, but, what is the cost? The parishioners here, and at the Nativity in Erie PA, (to take two examples) seem quite devout and serious. At the church here in Vienna, there are long lines for confession at every divine liturgy. I don't see how a person could go wrong. And the idea that a disagreement is cause for schism (with subsequent labeling of the other side as schismatic) cuts both ways, in that the issue may well be resolved in any case. How significant is an argument? To a relative outsider the Orthodox scene seems rather chaotic. It is very tempting to find genuine faith and piety and not worry about the details, because there will always be a certain amount of chaos. Oh well, comments welcome!  Grin
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« Reply #11 on: August 19, 2014, 08:18:39 AM »

This seems like a reasonably solid history. What's wrong with attaching myself here?

http://metropolia.tekladesign.info/history/
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« Reply #12 on: August 19, 2014, 08:20:09 AM »

I know of one young man who as a teen went with a group of Monastics on a pilgrimage  to Romania and Mount Athos and returned with the belief that Traditional Orthodoxy could not be lived in the United States and eventually left the Church after running through many of the "traditionalist" jurisdictions here in the U.S. He was very bitter and unhappy.

Can you provide any sense of what made him bitter and unhappy?
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« Reply #13 on: August 19, 2014, 08:30:30 AM »

My experiences here in Vienna, with the Bulgarian, Greek, Serbian, and Russian churches, make one thing pretty clear. As soon as you put chairs (or pews) into the space, people will do much less in the way of personal assent. I mean the full bow to the ground, and the prostration. The Russians have the greatest range. Every Divine Liturgy, there are two complete prostrations: on the knees, head touches floor. Otherwise, many signs of the cross with the hand going down to the floor within the abilities of the people. Many other slight bows such as for being incensed. I haven't been to an Orthodox church in the USA yet but I've seen some liturgies on the Internet. There are always pews in the way, and the movements are much less. There is also a lot more sitting. Indeed as soon as you put a chair near someone, a 'chair magnet' in their rear attracts them to sit. For instance in the Greek and Bulgarian churches here, there are chairs, and people do a lot of sitting. (Except for the standing-room-only crowd--who indeed may prefer that.) I didn't attend a Divine Liturgy at the Serbian, only vespers, but for vespers virtually all stand the full time. And of course it's not about athleticism, it's not about showing how long you can stand, it's not proving anything. But it's a bit more of a sacrifice, and when your feet hurt a bit you just recall Jesus on the Cross. And when you prostrate yourself, you are fully in the moment. You can sit or stand on the bus, but when are you going to prostrate yourself, and how will you prostrate yourself when there is a pew or a chair in the way?
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« Reply #14 on: August 19, 2014, 08:55:25 AM »

I know of one young man who as a teen went with a group of Monastics on a pilgrimage  to Romania and Mount Athos and returned with the belief that Traditional Orthodoxy could not be lived in the United States and eventually left the Church after running through many of the "traditionalist" jurisdictions here in the U.S. He was very bitter and unhappy.

Can you provide any sense of what made him bitter and unhappy?


None of them were perfect. None of them stopped the life of the city or town around them like the monks on Mount Athos due when the service is signaled. In Roumania the small village he was in halted everything when  the bells rang for services and everything shut down. I think that what he wanted was to live in a small village in an orthodox nation. No matter where he looked in the US he could not find that and he decided that he did not want to be in a monastary either. The Old Calendar parishes were filled with imperfect people who were as unhappy as he was, they always complained about "those ecumenists and new Calendarists" he asked me "where is the joy?" but would not listen to me when I gave him my answer that you have been given earlier in my posting.
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« Reply #15 on: August 19, 2014, 10:06:57 AM »

My experiences here in Vienna, with the Bulgarian, Greek, Serbian, and Russian churches, make one thing pretty clear. As soon as you put chairs (or pews) into the space, people will do much less in the way of personal assent. I mean the full bow to the ground, and the prostration. The Russians have the greatest range. Every Divine Liturgy, there are two complete prostrations: on the knees, head touches floor. Otherwise, many signs of the cross with the hand going down to the floor within the abilities of the people. Many other slight bows such as for being incensed. I haven't been to an Orthodox church in the USA yet but I've seen some liturgies on the Internet. There are always pews in the way, and the movements are much less. There is also a lot more sitting. Indeed as soon as you put a chair near someone, a 'chair magnet' in their rear attracts them to sit. For instance in the Greek and Bulgarian churches here, there are chairs, and people do a lot of sitting. (Except for the standing-room-only crowd--who indeed may prefer that.) I didn't attend a Divine Liturgy at the Serbian, only vespers, but for vespers virtually all stand the full time. And of course it's not about athleticism, it's not about showing how long you can stand, it's not proving anything. But it's a bit more of a sacrifice, and when your feet hurt a bit you just recall Jesus on the Cross. And when you prostrate yourself, you are fully in the moment. You can sit or stand on the bus, but when are you going to prostrate yourself, and how will you prostrate yourself when there is a pew or a chair in the way?

You have answered your own question.
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« Reply #16 on: August 19, 2014, 10:32:53 AM »

None of them were perfect.

Because "they" weren't really the problem. Fallen human nature. Non-sectarian spiritual truth: wherever you go, there YOU are.
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« Reply #17 on: August 19, 2014, 10:37:28 AM »

Dear liefern,

My priest counsels that one can stand in prayer and do prostrations at home, as instructed by one's spiritual advisor.  This activity does not need to be public. 

Love, elephant
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« Reply #18 on: August 19, 2014, 10:49:50 AM »

My experiences here in Vienna, with the Bulgarian, Greek, Serbian, and Russian churches, make one thing pretty clear. As soon as you put chairs (or pews) into the space, people will do much less in the way of personal assent. I mean the full bow to the ground, and the prostration. The Russians have the greatest range. Every Divine Liturgy, there are two complete prostrations: on the knees, head touches floor. Otherwise, many signs of the cross with the hand going down to the floor within the abilities of the people. Many other slight bows such as for being incensed. I haven't been to an Orthodox church in the USA yet but I've seen some liturgies on the Internet. There are always pews in the way, and the movements are much less. There is also a lot more sitting. Indeed as soon as you put a chair near someone, a 'chair magnet' in their rear attracts them to sit. For instance in the Greek and Bulgarian churches here, there are chairs, and people do a lot of sitting. (Except for the standing-room-only crowd--who indeed may prefer that.) I didn't attend a Divine Liturgy at the Serbian, only vespers, but for vespers virtually all stand the full time. And of course it's not about athleticism, it's not about showing how long you can stand, it's not proving anything. But it's a bit more of a sacrifice, and when your feet hurt a bit you just recall Jesus on the Cross. And when you prostrate yourself, you are fully in the moment. You can sit or stand on the bus, but when are you going to prostrate yourself, and how will you prostrate yourself when there is a pew or a chair in the way?

We have benches without backs, but most people stand to the side of them in order to have room for prostrations. I've only ever seen the elderly actually sit in a chair during the services.
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« Reply #19 on: August 19, 2014, 11:42:45 AM »

This seems like a reasonably solid history. What's wrong with attaching myself here?

http://metropolia.tekladesign.info/history/


Well, what is it you're looking for?
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« Reply #20 on: August 19, 2014, 03:51:32 PM »

This seems like a reasonably solid history. What's wrong with attaching myself here?

http://metropolia.tekladesign.info/history/


Well, what is it you're looking for?

That's a very fine question, Mor.

I think what I'm looking for, is to not feel like I have to keep looking. Smiley
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« Reply #21 on: August 19, 2014, 03:54:58 PM »

Dear liefern,

My priest counsels that one can stand in prayer and do prostrations at home, as instructed by one's spiritual advisor.  This activity does not need to be public. 

Love, elephant

That is certainly true. But when the way is unobstructed and the Orthodox faith fairly normal/traditional, people just do them during the Divine Liturgy.

Re wanting to live in an Orthodox village, this is an excellent point. I have no doubt that for some a kind of angst can set in, and the grass can seem greener in a different century. But God allowed us to be born here, and now. So that's where we are. So a yearning for tradition can be checked to see whether it's really what you are describing. And they probably wouldn't like the village. Smiley Well who knows.
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« Reply #22 on: August 19, 2014, 04:31:47 PM »

Liefern--My advice would be for you to become a member of the canonical Orthodox Churches. I really do not know why you place so much importance on little things (calendar, pews, etc), but then I could never understand folks who changed jurisdictions or worse, schismed over them. I guess what I am trying to tell you is to concentrate on working out your salvation and to quit trying to deciding for yourself which local church is most (or best) Orthodox. Now, I would be lying if I did not say that there are differences in piety and active church participation and that you should not consider these two factors for they are critical because you should avoid parishes that are lukewarm. From personal experience, I can tell you, however, that the existence of pews or the use of a particular calendar had no influence on piety and active participation in most churches that I have belonged to.
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« Reply #23 on: August 19, 2014, 04:34:29 PM »

Liefern--My advice would be for you to become a member of the canonical Orthodox Churches. I really do not know why you place so much importance on little things (calendar, pews, etc), but then I could never understand folks who changed jurisdictions or worse, schismed over them. I guess what I am trying to tell you is to concentrate on working out your salvation and to quit trying to deciding for yourself which local church is most (or best) Orthodox. Now, I would be lying if I did not say that there are differences in piety and active church participation and that you should not consider these two factors for they are critical because you should avoid parishes that are lukewarm. From personal experience, I can tell you, however, that the existence of pews or the use of a particular calendar had no influence on piety and active participation in most churches that I have belonged to.

+1!
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« Reply #24 on: August 19, 2014, 04:38:23 PM »

Thank you kindly, Carl, for giving me a second chance after I squawked at you in the other thread.  angel

So your argument is, Internalize the analysis, and let that be the guide. A strictly logical reply might be, various Protestants believe they have fulfilling experiences, but we know intellectually that they are in the wrong place, in an ideal world. Maybe they get something from their experiences, but we'd like to encourage them to know Orthodoxy. So, piety per se may not be a guide.

Now of course you're speaking within the Church properly speaking, where piety is much better understood. My argument is therefore too much of a diversion. But within Orthodoxy, if we know that patriarchs are eager for ecumenism while we the faithful are not, if we know that the faithful ought to be fasting more and in church are told only to give up chokkies on December 24, and if we know that prostration is very beneficial and traditional and that building construction seems contrived to thwart it, then have we any right to want something better? When is complaint allowed?

Separate but related: Suppose you are in your church, and someone bounds in and exclaims, "Hi! I'm from the Metropolia!" What is your answer?  Cheesy

I am grateful for help in these matters.
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« Reply #25 on: August 19, 2014, 04:48:58 PM »

Thank you kindly, Carl, for giving me a second chance after I squawked at you in the other thread.  angel

So your argument is, Internalize the analysis, and let that be the guide. A strictly logical reply might be, various Protestants believe they have fulfilling experiences, but we know intellectually that they are in the wrong place, in an ideal world. Maybe they get something from their experiences, but we'd like to encourage them to know Orthodoxy. So, piety per se may not be a guide.

Now of course you're speaking within the Church properly speaking, where piety is much better understood. My argument is therefore too much of a diversion. But within Orthodoxy, if we know that patriarchs are eager for ecumenism while we the faithful are not, if we know that the faithful ought to be fasting more and in church are told only to give up chokkies on December 24, and if we know that prostration is very beneficial and traditional and that building construction seems contrived to thwart it, then have we any right to want something better? When is complaint allowed?

Separate but related: Suppose you are in your church, and someone bounds in and exclaims, "Hi! I'm from the Metropolia!" What is your answer?  Cheesy

I am grateful for help in these matters.

I'm not Carl, but I can put a few points forward:

Have you yet found an Orthodox parish where St. Philip's Fast was publicly restricted to chocolates on the eve of (New Calendar) Nativity?  I would be astonished if you did.  The Eve of Nativity is a strict fast and people are not supposed to eat until the first star appears in the sky.  Now, some people disregard this and some people (for health reasons) are not able to keep the fasts in the prescribed way (or at all), but that's why we have priests.  The fasts are a medicine and a priest can increase it or lessen it depending upon the spiritual needs of the person.  But if a person doesn't go to the priest to discuss this (and he or she should, as part of regular confession), there is not much that can be done.

I've been in churches with pews and people prostrated at the relevant times in the aisles.  They worked around the pews.  This kind of stuff is only an issue if you make it one.  Long ago, churches didn't even have iconostases, not in the form that we have them today.  Check out the old diagrams of the Hagia Sophia in Constantinople.  Even today, Greek iconostases and Russian iconostases are different in style.  Obviously, icons are important (see the Seventh Ecumenical Council).  But issues like this vary from culture to culture within the Faith, and that's OK.  If it weren't OK, a church would be reproved (as they often were by the Apostles and later various Church Fathers and Bishops) and ultimately they would be excommunicated (as happened to the Pope of Rome about 1000 years ago).

If someone walked into my church and said that they were from the Metropolia, I would first think that they had come to me in a time machine from the 1950s and that they were part of what is now the OCA.  But after I figured out that they were from an Old Calendarist Church, I would welcome them warmly.  I would perhaps be somewhat surprised that they were attending my parish at first because they would seem less likely to do so, based upon their beliefs.  They would be free to pray to the Lord in His house, as would anyone who walked through that door seeking God.





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« Reply #26 on: August 19, 2014, 04:51:12 PM »

Thank you kindly, Carl, for giving me a second chance after I squawked at you in the other thread.  angel

So your argument is, Internalize the analysis, and let that be the guide. A strictly logical reply might be, various Protestants believe they have fulfilling experiences, but we know intellectually that they are in the wrong place, in an ideal world. Maybe they get something from their experiences, but we'd like to encourage them to know Orthodoxy. So, piety per se may not be a guide.

Now of course you're speaking within the Church properly speaking, where piety is much better understood. My argument is therefore too much of a diversion. But within Orthodoxy, if we know that patriarchs are eager for ecumenism while we the faithful are not, if we know that the faithful ought to be fasting more and in church are told only to give up chokkies on December 24, and if we know that prostration is very beneficial and traditional and that building construction seems contrived to thwart it, then have we any right to want something better? When is complaint allowed?

Separate but related: Suppose you are in your church, and someone bounds in and exclaims, "Hi! I'm from the Metropolia!" What is your answer?  Cheesy

I am grateful for help in these matters.



i think you are letting a personal scruple get in the way....

you are not even orthodox and you are saying things like 'But within Orthodoxy, if we know that patriarchs are eager for ecumenism while we the faithful are not, if we know that the faithful ought to be fasting more and in church are told only to give up chokkies on December 24, and if we know that prostration is very beneficial and traditional and that building construction seems contrived to thwart it, then have we any right to want something better? '


First of all, you are applying some standards that are not true....not even of 'world orthodoxy' or whatever it is we are allowed to call it here.  

Fasting is not about 'giving up' a single luxury item like chocolate, even in the most 'lax' parishes. Not for Lent, not for Wed and Fridays, and not for Nativity.
People prostrate in churches with Pews.  I go to one. People prostrate.

You have visited one parish and jurisdiction, yes?  (and i understand that may be all that is available nearby)

If that is the case, please do not apply things you have heard on the internet to all the -other- parishes around the world that you have not seen for yourself what the practice is, and make some unreasonable standard based on what you have not experienced but rather have read in potentially propaganda laced documents.





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« Reply #27 on: August 19, 2014, 04:53:49 PM »

This seems like a reasonably solid history. What's wrong with attaching myself here?

http://metropolia.tekladesign.info/history/


Well, what is it you're looking for?

That's a very fine question, Mor.

I think what I'm looking for, is to not feel like I have to keep looking. Smiley

Forgive me, but it sounds like the problem is with the traveler and not with the destination.  I am sympathetic, but it is an entirely different problem from ecclesiastical discipline.  
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« Reply #28 on: August 19, 2014, 04:59:14 PM »

This seems like a reasonably solid history. What's wrong with attaching myself here?

http://metropolia.tekladesign.info/history/


Well, what is it you're looking for?

That's a very fine question, Mor.

I think what I'm looking for, is to not feel like I have to keep looking. Smiley

Forgive me, but it sounds like the problem is with the traveler and not with the destination.  I am sympathetic, but it is an entirely different problem from ecclesiastical discipline.  

That's well-stated. But, what about the Metropolia's history? Can it be faulted? What if a friend of yours told you, "Mor, I'm thinking about entering a Metropolia parish."
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« Reply #29 on: August 19, 2014, 05:06:11 PM »

Thank you kindly, Carl, for giving me a second chance after I squawked at you in the other thread.  angel

So your argument is, Internalize the analysis, and let that be the guide. A strictly logical reply might be, various Protestants believe they have fulfilling experiences, but we know intellectually that they are in the wrong place, in an ideal world. Maybe they get something from their experiences, but we'd like to encourage them to know Orthodoxy. So, piety per se may not be a guide.

Now of course you're speaking within the Church properly speaking, where piety is much better understood. My argument is therefore too much of a diversion. But within Orthodoxy, if we know that patriarchs are eager for ecumenism while we the faithful are not, if we know that the faithful ought to be fasting more and in church are told only to give up chokkies on December 24, and if we know that prostration is very beneficial and traditional and that building construction seems contrived to thwart it, then have we any right to want something better? When is complaint allowed?

Separate but related: Suppose you are in your church, and someone bounds in and exclaims, "Hi! I'm from the Metropolia!" What is your answer?  Cheesy

I am grateful for help in these matters.



i think you are letting a personal scruple get in the way....

you are not even orthodox and you are saying things like 'But within Orthodoxy, if we know that patriarchs are eager for ecumenism while we the faithful are not, if we know that the faithful ought to be fasting more and in church are told only to give up chokkies on December 24, and if we know that prostration is very beneficial and traditional and that building construction seems contrived to thwart it, then have we any right to want something better? '


First of all, you are applying some standards that are not true....not even of 'world orthodoxy' or whatever it is we are allowed to call it here.  

Fasting is not about 'giving up' a single luxury item like chocolate, even in the most 'lax' parishes. Not for Lent, not for Wed and Fridays, and not for Nativity.
People prostrate in churches with Pews.  I go to one. People prostrate.

You have visited one parish and jurisdiction, yes?  (and i understand that may be all that is available nearby)

If that is the case, please do not apply things you have heard on the internet to all the -other- parishes around the world that you have not seen for yourself what the practice is, and make some unreasonable standard based on what you have not experienced but rather have read in potentially propaganda laced documents.

Very fine feedback. Many thanks. My experiences so far: actual parishes visited, all in Vienna, Austria: the Serbian (for vespers only, not DL), the Greek (DL only, not vespers), the Bulgarian (DL only, not vespers), and the Russian (DL, vespers, a vigil, and office for the dead). The Russian church here has the most fruitful-seeming character. Many people line up for confession at DL, there is lots of devotion to the saints during services, but of course most people stand, make plenty of deep bows, and the two complete prostrations (that's how many I remember). On the Internet, I have seen liturgies in about four places. This was about six months ago, but I don't recall quite so much personal assent-related movement. And in one homily right before Christmas, the parishioners were duly advised to fast a bit prior to the Nativity.

What I would like to avoid is what happened to me in RCIA. Within a few weeks of RCIA I discovered that the traditionalist side was really much better. Is it your contention that such a situation doesn't exist in Orthodoxy, that it is all quite healthy and sound?
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« Reply #30 on: August 19, 2014, 05:06:57 PM »

Forgive me, but it sounds like the problem is with the traveler and not with the destination.  I am sympathetic, but it is an entirely different problem from ecclesiastical discipline.  

That's well-stated. But, what about the Metropolia's history? Can it be faulted? What if a friend of yours told you, "Mor, I'm thinking about entering a Metropolia parish."

Sure, it can be faulted: almost anyone or anything's history contains inconvenient truths.  If a friend told me he was thinking of entering a parish of this jurisdiction, I would ask why.  
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« Reply #31 on: August 19, 2014, 05:09:46 PM »

Thank you kindly, Carl, for giving me a second chance after I squawked at you in the other thread.  angel

So your argument is, Internalize the analysis, and let that be the guide. A strictly logical reply might be, various Protestants believe they have fulfilling experiences, but we know intellectually that they are in the wrong place, in an ideal world. Maybe they get something from their experiences, but we'd like to encourage them to know Orthodoxy. So, piety per se may not be a guide.

Now of course you're speaking within the Church properly speaking, where piety is much better understood. My argument is therefore too much of a diversion. But within Orthodoxy, if we know that patriarchs are eager for ecumenism while we the faithful are not, if we know that the faithful ought to be fasting more and in church are told only to give up chokkies on December 24, and if we know that prostration is very beneficial and traditional and that building construction seems contrived to thwart it, then have we any right to want something better? When is complaint allowed?

Separate but related: Suppose you are in your church, and someone bounds in and exclaims, "Hi! I'm from the Metropolia!" What is your answer?  Cheesy

I am grateful for help in these matters.



i think you are letting a personal scruple get in the way....

you are not even orthodox and you are saying things like 'But within Orthodoxy, if we know that patriarchs are eager for ecumenism while we the faithful are not, if we know that the faithful ought to be fasting more and in church are told only to give up chokkies on December 24, and if we know that prostration is very beneficial and traditional and that building construction seems contrived to thwart it, then have we any right to want something better? '


First of all, you are applying some standards that are not true....not even of 'world orthodoxy' or whatever it is we are allowed to call it here.  

Fasting is not about 'giving up' a single luxury item like chocolate, even in the most 'lax' parishes. Not for Lent, not for Wed and Fridays, and not for Nativity.
People prostrate in churches with Pews.  I go to one. People prostrate.

You have visited one parish and jurisdiction, yes?  (and i understand that may be all that is available nearby)

If that is the case, please do not apply things you have heard on the internet to all the -other- parishes around the world that you have not seen for yourself what the practice is, and make some unreasonable standard based on what you have not experienced but rather have read in potentially propaganda laced documents.

Very fine feedback. Many thanks. My experiences so far: actual parishes visited, all in Vienna, Austria: the Serbian (for vespers only, not DL), the Greek (DL only, not vespers), the Bulgarian (DL only, not vespers), and the Russian (DL, vespers, a vigil, and office for the dead). The Russian church here has the most fruitful-seeming character. Many people line up for confession at DL, there is lots of devotion to the saints during services, but of course most people stand, make plenty of deep bows, and the two complete prostrations (that's how many I remember). On the Internet, I have seen liturgies in about four places. This was about six months ago, but I don't recall quite so much personal assent-related movement. And in one homily right before Christmas, the parishioners were duly advised to fast a bit prior to the Nativity.

What I would like to avoid is what happened to me in RCIA. Within a few weeks of RCIA I discovered that the traditionalist side was really much better. Is it your contention that such a situation doesn't exist in Orthodoxy, that it is all quite healthy and sound?

On the whole, yes, that is my contention, at least.  Of course there could be exceptions in some parish or another, but if it exists, it will be rooted out by the bishop; if it is not, then that bishop will be addressed in good order by his fellow bishops.

And as you think about these things, remember, generally, the words of Our Lord:  "Beware of the scribes, who like to walk around in long robes, and love respectful greetings in the market places, and chief seats in the synagogues and places of honor at banquets, who devour widows' houses, and for appearance's sake offer long prayers. These will receive greater condemnation."  (St. Luke 20:46-47.)
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« Reply #32 on: August 19, 2014, 05:14:41 PM »

And as you think about these things, remember, generally, the words of Our Lord:  "Beware of the scribes, who like to walk around in long robes, and love respectful greetings in the market places, and chief seats in the synagogues and places of honor at banquets, who devour widows' houses, and for appearance's sake offer long prayers. These will receive greater condemnation."  (St. Luke 20:46-47.)

One irony is that these TO parishes may be among the less well-funded, and so have less glamour. Sometimes they have to rent space. Anyway I doubt that the TO people are prone to being flashy and eager to be perceived as devout. I think they want an environment in which they are encouraged to follow the faith more fully. So they don't want to be told that the Philokalia is 'too hard', they want to be with other people who try to fast, they want support for their faith, in short.

Consider your priest. Is he more likely to sponsor an ecumenical retreat with Moslems and Jews, or to declare from the pulpit that ecumenism is a diabolical deceit?
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« Reply #33 on: August 19, 2014, 05:26:12 PM »

It may be an unfair question, in that it forces you to consider your priest in an unfavorable light at least in theory.

If someone entered your parish and declared that they are of the Metropolia jurisdiction, would you say that they shouldn't have communion in your church? I think people are attracted to those parishes out of a desire to be more serious. Maybe they have some experiences, like being told they are too devoted to saints, or maybe they confess too much, who knows. In the Russian church here, people spend a lot of time kissing the icons. I don't know how they'd do that with pews in the way, but of course the argument would be, if they're wandering around they're not paying attention! But they are. They are devoted and are paying a lot of attention.

To some extent, the interiorization of the analysis can be turned on its head in the following way. The faithful coming in from the Metropolia (or some other TO) would obviously have a good life of piety, being constantly nurtured in the traditional way. But the tendency would be to say, "You're schismatic, no communion for you here." And thus would end even the conversation, because people are very cliquish, in religion especially. So yes, we should look to see where there is faith and piety, but we prioritize concerns that are harder than that, which are the concerns I'm getting at. I don't want to get part-way in and discover that it's RCIA all over again.
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« Reply #34 on: August 19, 2014, 08:43:09 PM »

The sad reality is that Orthodox Christians under the GOC-K and the Metropolia and all those Orthodox Christians in communion with the EP and MP are not in communion with each other.

So, if you were to join one of the many jurisdictions in communion with the EP and MP, and then were to attend the GOC under Met. Kallinikos or the Metropolia under Met. John, they would most likely make you wait six months to a year or more before receiving you.  Similarly, if you were to join the GOC-K or Metropolia-Met. John and then want to change to a New Calendar parish or Old Calendar parish in communion with the MP, they would also make you wait six months to a year before receiving you.

Pray, read the lives of the saints, study, and ask a lot of questions, and if in doubt, pray some more.

Know that I will be praying for you.
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« Reply #35 on: August 19, 2014, 08:52:30 PM »

I will try to reply as best I am able.  See below.

It may be an unfair question, in that it forces you to consider your priest in an unfavorable light at least in theory.

If someone entered your parish and declared that they are of the Metropolia jurisdiction, would you say that they shouldn't have communion in your church?

I wouldn't presume to tell them anything of the sort.  I am not a priest.  However, I would suspect that my priest would not commune them, because their hierarch has broken communion with our hierarch.  That much is a given.  Frankly, I would be surprised if an Old Calendarist they wanted to commune in my parish, which is in communion with the ancient patriarchates.  If they did, they would probably need to be received into our communion.  Since they share so much in common with it already, this may be by chrismation or maybe just by confession.  I don't know.  How that would be done would be up to the bishop and his delegate, the priest.

Quote
I think people are attracted to those parishes out of a desire to be more serious. Maybe they have some experiences, like being told they are too devoted to saints, or maybe they confess too much, who knows.

I have no idea.  The people here who are in Old Calendarist parishes could probably tell you why they are there.  It would be interesting to hear.

Quote
In the Russian church here, people spend a lot of time kissing the icons. I don't know how they'd do that with pews in the way, but of course the argument would be, if they're wandering around they're not paying attention! But they are.

Do you mean when they come into the church, or are they wandering around during the Liturgy?  Or are they doing this during the Hours?  There are certain times during the Divine Liturgy when a person is not supposed to be wandering around the church, period.  A lot of our people have a bad habit of coming into church late.  But when they do, they still go up and venerate the icons, place a candle, etc., and this is fine, although if the priest is in a procession, reading the Gospel, giving a sermon, etc., they should wait outside the doors to the Nave before they come in.  But the priests I've known are just glad to see these people show up and usually wave them in with a wave of the hand.  If they are chronic latecomers, that situation might be addressed privately.  And these are churches with pews.

Quote
They are devoted and are paying a lot of attention.

Wonderful!  But I wouldn't purport to judge them.  I find that I have enough trouble paying attention myself.  Sometimes venerating an icon brings me closer to God but other times, depending on my frame of mind, it can be a distraction or even prideful.  I have enough trouble worrying about my own frame of mind.  I presume my fellow worshippers are doing the same, and I leave them to it.

Quote
To some extent, the interiorization of the analysis can be turned on its head in the following way. The faithful coming in from the Metropolia (or some other TO) would obviously have a good life of piety, being constantly nurtured in the traditional way.

I wouldn't presume to judge.  They could be the most pious people in the world, walking saints, or they could be legalistic Pharisees.  It would depend upon the state of their soul.  Not my call.

Quote
But the tendency would be to say, "You're schismatic, no communion for you here."

No, the tendency would be for our priests to say, I can't judge you.  But you are under the care of a bishop who is not in communion with my bishop.  If you wish to receive communion here, you must first come under the care of a bishop who is either my bishop or is in communion with my bishop.

Quote
And thus would end even the conversation, because people are very cliquish, in religion especially.

Not if the person wished to come into the pastoral care of that congregation.  That's what communion is.  Expressing entire belief with the doctrines of the Church as expressed by that local bishop whose deputy, a priest, is serving that congregation.  I wouldn't want to go up for communion in an Old Calendarist parish because my bishop, under whose care I am, doesn't agree with everything that their bishops teach, although I would never say that those bishops or people are not holy or that I will see heaven before they do.  Far from it.  There are some instances, such as with the Oriental Orthodox, where I wish I could go to communion there, because I believe that we hold the same faith, but because my bishop has not consented to this, I must obey my bishop.

Quote
So yes, we should look to see where there is faith and piety, but we prioritize concerns that are harder than that, which are the concerns I'm getting at. I don't want to get part-way in and discover that it's RCIA all over again.

I can't speak to your latter concerns without specifics.  
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« Reply #36 on: August 19, 2014, 09:03:04 PM »

And as you think about these things, remember, generally, the words of Our Lord:  "Beware of the scribes, who like to walk around in long robes, and love respectful greetings in the market places, and chief seats in the synagogues and places of honor at banquets, who devour widows' houses, and for appearance's sake offer long prayers. These will receive greater condemnation."  (St. Luke 20:46-47.)

One irony is that these TO parishes may be among the less well-funded, and so have less glamour. Sometimes they have to rent space. Anyway I doubt that the TO people are prone to being flashy and eager to be perceived as devout. I think they want an environment in which they are encouraged to follow the faith more fully. So they don't want to be told that the Philokalia is 'too hard', they want to be with other people who try to fast, they want support for their faith, in short.

The Philokalia is not too hard, but it is hard.  And everyone is not ready for all of what it teaches.  Orthodoxy applies its tools as medicines to people.  If a person has cancer, he might not be able to undergo thirty treatments of chemotherapy and ten doses of radiation simultaneously.  It might kill the cancer but it might kill him, too.  And this is what you see with overzealous people all the time.  Some of this stuff is written for monastics, whose duty is not only to seek their own salvation but also the salvation of thousands around them.  Not everyone is called to the monastic life.  And some of it is very, very advanced. 

There is a canon of an Ecumenical Council which prohibits visiting Jewish doctors.  It is binding, it is authoritative.  But can you pick that up and decide that it is a great sin to visit Dr. Lieberman, or castigate your fellow parishioner for doing so?  No.  Because the wisdom of the Church would reveal that visiting a Jewish doctor had certain implications at the time that canon was written and the meaning behind it may no longer be applicable to modern Jewish medical practitioners.  But it may be applicable to, say, Reiki healing treatments.  If you do too much too fast you don't build up the wisdom that lets you discern these things.  You fall into error and rigidity, you burn yourself out, and you could lose your soul.

Quote
Consider your priest. Is he more likely to sponsor an ecumenical retreat with Moslems and Jews, or to declare from the pulpit that ecumenism is a diabolical deceit?

Well, we don't usually have pulpits (although the Greeks sometimes do).  I don't even know what we would do at an ecumenical retreat with Muslims and Jews.  If we were making pancakes to raise money to bring peace in the Middle East, I don't know why our parish wouldn't participate in that.  But we wouldn't be about to have some kind of service in which we try to syncretize the Hadith with the Protoevangelion of James, or some such.  That has never happened and it just wouldn't happen.  Now, be aware that some of our hierarchs live in lands where Muslims run the government, and some of those Muslims actively want to kill Orthodox Christians.  And a subset of them are doing so now, quite effectively.  It is therefore in the interest of those hierarchs to befriend the Muslim rulers of those lands (this was the case in Ottoman Turkey from 1453 to 1922, by the way), and to highlight the commonalities of faith between Orthodox Christianity and faith X with them.  That is not so that we can say "we are all the same."  It is instead to help those people see the good in us, so that they don't want to kill us.  And it is also to help our people not to hate those people, but to see that they, too, are Children of God, with at least some truth, although not the fullness of truth that we have in Orthodoxy, and to better love our neighbor as ourselves.

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« Reply #37 on: August 20, 2014, 04:09:07 PM »

Thank you kindly, Carl, for giving me a second chance after I squawked at you in the other thread.  angel

So your argument is, Internalize the analysis, and let that be the guide. A strictly logical reply might be, various Protestants believe they have fulfilling experiences, but we know intellectually that they are in the wrong place, in an ideal world. Maybe they get something from their experiences, but we'd like to encourage them to know Orthodoxy. So, piety per se may not be a guide.

Now of course you're speaking within the Church properly speaking, where piety is much better understood. My argument is therefore too much of a diversion. But within Orthodoxy, if we know that patriarchs are eager for ecumenism while we the faithful are not, if we know that the faithful ought to be fasting more and in church are told only to give up chokkies on December 24, and if we know that prostration is very beneficial and traditional and that building construction seems contrived to thwart it, then have we any right to want something better? When is complaint allowed?

Separate but related: Suppose you are in your church, and someone bounds in and exclaims, "Hi! I'm from the Metropolia!" What is your answer?  Cheesy

I am grateful for help in these matters.

Sure--Glad to be of help. As Yurispudentsiya and DeniseDenise have intimated, canonical Orthodox churches do not experience the problems that you foresee. Let me give you examples from my personal experience. I belong to Holy Apostles Orthodox Church (OCA) and my daughter to St Elias (Antiochian)--in different cities about 1200 miles apart. Both have great priests who encourage the congregation to become true disciples; great choirs that are backed up by congregational singing; great outreach and missionary work; significant contributions to the growth of Orthodoxy in their respective regions; and most importantly, congregations who have an active prayer life in church and at home. Holy Apostles does not have pews, St Elias does, but folks who want to prostrate (my preference as well) do so. Both happen to be on Revised Julian Calendar but we nonetheless observe the fasts with the same ardor we see in a sister church nearby that is on the Julian Calendar. I have got to tell you that I have brothers and sisters who are closer than me to the Lord in many respects and that I have not seen that scrupulous adherence to fasting and rubrics have made much of a difference.

If you were to come to me saying "Hi! I am from the Metropolia, I would naturally assume that you are either in a time warp or belong to a metropolis of the Greek Archdiocese. I would of course welcome you as I would in any other visitor. Now, if I find out that you are from a schismatic church, then I would rejoice and thank God that you have come to your senses. Smiley

Finally, I did not mean to squash legitimate concerns and complaints in anyone who seeks the True Faith. I agree with you that many folks who are in canonical churches have made their choices based on what I have called "little things", but isn't it great that we are starting to have choices? I myself like a congregation that prays and works hard, a priest who is always pushing and pulling us up that ladder, services in English, the Revised Julian Calendar, and no pews.  I have got to tell you that only the first two "likes" of mine are essential and the rest I can take or leave, if I do not have a choice. But, evben if I found myself faced with the choice of an Orthodox church that does not fit my list above, and no Orthodox church, I would pick the latter and try to hep it come alive in the Lord.
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« Reply #38 on: August 21, 2014, 04:08:57 AM »

liefern,

  You sound like you have many questions, and I will tell you what Yoda told Luke Skywalker...."Clear your mind of questions."


Seriously.    


I too was a Roman Catholic for many years before becoming Orthodox, and I intially came to the Church with a head full of books, memorized Canons, and intellectual musings.

It gets in the way....it REALLY does.   Brother/Sister, I speak from personal experience and implore you to not go down the path of worrying about these things.

You can't approach Orthodoxy "intellectually" and not have your head spun around like a blender.  

Forget about Calendars, Pews, Ecumenism and all of that.


Did I mention to forget about Calendars, Pews, Ecumenism and all of that?   What profit is it for the soul to engage in speculation?

Attend Divine Liturgy,  Pray....Humble yourself and embrace obedience.    

Realizing that we know nothing sets us on the path.

God save us all from Delusion.

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« Reply #39 on: August 21, 2014, 08:52:39 AM »

Hi. Building a bit on this thread here ( http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,60201.0.html ) about the GOC et al., I wonder if any of you can help me think a bit, by and by, about this general topic. Perhaps if we avoid the typical inflammatory things it won't have to be budged over to the private area.

What do you estimate is the prognosis of the GOC, SiR, Metropolia, and other Orthodox who reject modernism, ecumenism, and use of new calendar? I ask because my experience with the Russian church in particular tells me that I could potentially be happy there. I don't think it's anything like the Novus Ordo in the Catholic church, where what you see just showing up is enough to scandalize. But I would be unable to go to the main churches if I enter through the GOC et al., because they are schismatic [or are so labeled]. So I'd be limited to those more traditional churches. On the other hand, maybe it doesn't matter. I certainly prefer the old calendar, and if I'm trying to fast e.g. for Advent I'd rather not hear in church that 'maybe for the 24 of December you could try giving up chocolate'. I'd rather be with other fasting people. Yet again, I don't want my Orthodoxy to be, shall we say, a distraction. I just want it to be something I am, as it is for normal Orthodox. If I go to these smaller groups, there is more risk of personal psychology, obsession, and so on. A further complication is that a GOC-type place is actually closer to me than the Russians. Furthermore, I dislike pews and organs, and would like very much to have the more traditional Orthodox experience, if possible!

So can you help me think about this at all?
Those investigating Orthodoxy for the experience are bound to be disappointed after a few months. Find a parish with a good priest who is attentive to the needs of the faithful and don't worry about all the other accessories. One problem with modern society is our tendency to over research everything. Learning about something is good, analyzing it to death leads to paralysis and doubt.
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« Reply #40 on: August 21, 2014, 09:05:44 AM »

On some level we are discussing the extent to which resistance to the most obvious forms or appearances is needed. In my reading I keep my eyes open for confirmation of the legitimacy of resisting, as well as evidence that resistance is misguided. In Father Seraphim Rose: His Life and Works I find a few helpful lines from time to time. I have the Kindle version. Starting along about location 6910, in chapter 52:

Quote
[In a letter, Eugene wrote:] "I suspect that the very same thing, only much vaster and more complicated, is happening today: that those who feel Orthodoxy (through living its life of grace and being exposed to and raised on its basic treasures--lives of saints, Patristic writings, etc.) are battling together against an enemy, a heresy, that has not yet been fully defined or manifested. Separate aspects or manifestations of it (chiliasm, social Gospel, renovationism, ecumenism) may be identified and fought, but the battle is largely instinctive as yet, and those who do not feel Orthodoxy in their heart and bones (e.g., those who are brought up on 'Concern' and 'Young Life' instead of lives of saints!) do not really know what you're talking about and they can't understand how you can become so excited over something which no council has ever identified as a heresy."

I think that those who move toward TO have this instinctive sense, and face the same kind of problem Fr. Seraphim outlines above, that without a declared heresy to oppose one isn't understood as of yet.

Quote
"... Eugene felt that he had to bring more people into the fold of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad, which he saw as one of the last holdouts against compromise...." "...Gleb [later Fr. Herman] suggested that Fr. Panteleimon [of Boston] join the Russian Church Abroad, but Fr. Panteleimon objected that this Church was unrecognized because of its refusal to be under the authority of the Moscow Patriarchate. To this Gleb responded that one has to understand the nature of Communism in order to understand the existence of the Russian Church Abroad. ...Fr. Panteleimon was [eventually] convinced of the soundness of Eugene's views. He thanked him, saying that he would be joining the Russian Church Abroad, where he would find a stronger confession of the Faith and less opposition to his monastic endeavors."

Today's TO groups are like the Russian Church Abroad was at that time, and again today we need to understand the real nature of Communism, not the specific political expression of it in Bolshevik Russia, Twentieth Century, but the larger social aims, expressed even by Gorbachev as Communism was officially set aside, that the social aims will spread onward of their own accord: in other words it is hardly dead and gone, and needn't even be called Communism. Any sort of ideology positing man as the center, proposing all activities to be for the benefit of man because of man, with a corresponding minimization of Christ, fits the pattern. Also in the above quote we can see the importance of perceiving a stronger confession of the Faith, as a basis for making one's choice.

Quote
"In his later years Eugene [later Fr. Seraphim] would put it this way: 'The heart of Sergianism is bound up with the common problem of all the Orthodox Churches today--the losing of the savor of Orthodoxy, taking the Church for granted, taking the 'organization' for the Body of Christ, trusting that Grace and the Mysteries are somehow 'automatic'. Logic and reasonable behavior are not going to get us over these rocks; much suffering and experience are required, and few will understand.'"

Sergianism is alive and well, as a general orientation.

Again all quotes from chapter 52.

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« Reply #41 on: August 21, 2014, 09:25:44 AM »



You have clearly no need for advice here. What you really want is justification and support for a choice you have already made.

You want us to tell you that 'of course you are right, all that reading and advanced pre-homework has paid off and you have ' solved the puzzle'

Alas it doesn't work that way. You don't even know what picture the puzzle actually makes yet.
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« Reply #42 on: August 21, 2014, 12:05:45 PM »

On some level we are discussing the extent to which resistance to the most obvious forms or appearances is needed. In my reading I keep my eyes open for confirmation of the legitimacy of resisting, as well as evidence that resistance is misguided. In Father Seraphim Rose: His Life and Works I find a few helpful lines from time to time. I have the Kindle version. Starting along about location 6910, in chapter 52:

Quote
[In a letter, Eugene wrote:] "I suspect that the very same thing, only much vaster and more complicated, is happening today: that those who feel Orthodoxy (through living its life of grace and being exposed to and raised on its basic treasures--lives of saints, Patristic writings, etc.) are battling together against an enemy, a heresy, that has not yet been fully defined or manifested. Separate aspects or manifestations of it (chiliasm, social Gospel, renovationism, ecumenism) may be identified and fought, but the battle is largely instinctive as yet, and those who do not feel Orthodoxy in their heart and bones (e.g., those who are brought up on 'Concern' and 'Young Life' instead of lives of saints!) do not really know what you're talking about and they can't understand how you can become so excited over something which no council has ever identified as a heresy."

I think that those who move toward TO have this instinctive sense, and face the same kind of problem Fr. Seraphim outlines above, that without a declared heresy to oppose one isn't understood as of yet.

So basically, you are moving toward "True Orthodoxy" because it's not enough for an Orthodox Christian to oppose the "Old Adam" within yourself, to wage war with his sins and passions, to oppose all worldliness, to reject Satan and crush him underfoot in Christ...but more than that he also needs to battle Communism.  Do I have that right?  Because that's what it sounds like. 
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« Reply #43 on: August 21, 2014, 12:28:33 PM »

On some level we are discussing the extent to which resistance to the most obvious forms or appearances is needed. In my reading I keep my eyes open for confirmation of the legitimacy of resisting, as well as evidence that resistance is misguided. In Father Seraphim Rose: His Life and Works I find a few helpful lines from time to time. I have the Kindle version. Starting along about location 6910, in chapter 52:

Quote
[In a letter, Eugene wrote:] "I suspect that the very same thing, only much vaster and more complicated, is happening today: that those who feel Orthodoxy (through living its life of grace and being exposed to and raised on its basic treasures--lives of saints, Patristic writings, etc.) are battling together against an enemy, a heresy, that has not yet been fully defined or manifested. Separate aspects or manifestations of it (chiliasm, social Gospel, renovationism, ecumenism) may be identified and fought, but the battle is largely instinctive as yet, and those who do not feel Orthodoxy in their heart and bones (e.g., those who are brought up on 'Concern' and 'Young Life' instead of lives of saints!) do not really know what you're talking about and they can't understand how you can become so excited over something which no council has ever identified as a heresy."

I think that those who move toward TO have this instinctive sense, and face the same kind of problem Fr. Seraphim outlines above, that without a declared heresy to oppose one isn't understood as of yet.

So basically, you are moving toward "True Orthodoxy" because it's not enough for an Orthodox Christian to oppose the "Old Adam" within yourself, to wage war with his sins and passions, to oppose all worldliness, to reject Satan and crush him underfoot in Christ...but more than that he also needs to battle Communism.  Do I have that right?  Because that's what it sounds like. 
Don't be silly. One must also fight against gregorian calendars as well.
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« Reply #44 on: August 21, 2014, 03:06:59 PM »



You have clearly no need for advice here. What you really want is justification and support for a choice you have already made.

You want us to tell you that 'of course you are right, all that reading and advanced pre-homework has paid off and you have ' solved the puzzle'

Alas it doesn't work that way. You don't even know what picture the puzzle actually makes yet.


I agree. Liefern--I hope you are using us to resolve your internal arguments rather than to obtain approval for joining schismatic churches.


a warning to your use of the term "schismatic" due to it's meaning being used to show defamatory, slanderous, libelous intention which are against the OC.net rules.
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