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Author Topic: Challenges of Orthodoxy in America And the Role of the Ecumenical Patriarchate  (Read 30258 times) Average Rating: 0
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« Reply #45 on: March 18, 2009, 10:35:13 PM »


Without a conciliar acceptance, if one of the five Patriarchates rejects it,  then it cannot be implemented.

Proof?

Germany, Holland, Switzerland, Britain, Ireland, etc., etc.  - all barbarian lands which were evangelised by Rome.   To my knowledge Constantinople did not make the slightest attempt to use Canon 28 to claim authority over these lands.
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« Reply #46 on: March 18, 2009, 10:39:53 PM »

I believe that Fr Francis Dvornik showed in Byzantium and the Roman Primacy that Rome did in fact accept Chalcedon 28 after protesting it. It was only later that they reverted to the "we never accepted this" position. I don't have that book sitting here though. Maybe someone can cite the page if they have it, or show me if I am mistaken.

Father,

Why would the Church of Rome accept that all its missionary labours (and they were immense) in the barbarian lands such as Germany etc. was simply work done for Constantinople's benefit?   Were the Churches created by Rome in barbarian lands handed over to Constantinople?
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« Reply #47 on: March 18, 2009, 10:43:26 PM »

Hardly.  Fr. Elpidoforos is an academic invited by the school to speak, not the other way around.  This isn't his first visit (I was at the school, when he broke the news about Cyprus to a few of us sitting in the barber shop; he had just gotten the phone call), nor will it be his last - he has relationships with people there, relationships that were revisited when my class visited Constantinople.

Well, I am relieved that he did this all on his own. By the way, how about some prime real estate....

Are you a man "who sees through the facade and doesn't buy it," or "who is confronted with the truth and doesn't buy it."  Believe it or not, the EP doesn't micromanage his priests, and does allow them to go and speak as they wish.  He didn't "send him to confront the Metropolitans," and since you've decided to make the claim, you're going to have to prove it or have your statements rendered irrelevant.  Without any semblance of logic or substantiation, your cries of "lapdog" to Fr. Elpidoforos will look as pathetic to everyone else as they do to me.

And, in a decidedly ugly way.
It's a paper, rebutting comments that both Metropolitans have made recently.  How is that ugly?  If it is ugly, then shouldn't the comments that were initially made by the other Metropolitans be considered equally "ugly?"
Ugly in the sense of being condescending, accusing opponents of heresy, calling Metropolitan Phillip's considered opinion that of "circumstantial judgment of some bishop." This is not tit-for-tat, this is disrespect.

Actually, (in a common rhetorical device) he didn't actually call the Metropolitan's characterization a "circumstancial judgment of some bishop," but rather made that statement as a generality, that the Metropolitan wanted to stipulate that the Church will allow its canons to be subject to "the circumstancial judgment of some bishop."  Nice try.  How about both Metropolitans taking opportunities to pot-shot the Ecumenical Patriarchate to favorable audiences without providing balanced views or counterpoints?


I will quote from the article, but first I want to make a comment on the following claim: "At no point, the spirit of nationalism took hold of the Ecumenical Patriarchate because that is incompatible with the concepts of Hellenism and Ecumenicity (ecumenical character) as well as with the Christian Orthodox faith. The proof of this emerges in the most decisive manner throughout the 17 centuries of its history, during which it never Hellenized, not even attempted to Hellenize the nations to which it gave through its apostolic missions the undying light of Christ." This is a complete lie, the opposite of historical truth, and one which I am sure would not be presented to the non-Greek populations of the Balkans.
Bring the proof, or don't bother responding.

I was hoping you would not challenge me. But, here it goes, warts and all...
Are you familiar with the reestablishment of the Bulgarian Church in the 19th century? It was called the Bulgarian Exarchate and covered all of Modern day Bulgaria, almost all of modern day northern Greece, and the current Republic of Macedonia. A German map showing the boundaries may be found at http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/c/ce/Bulgarian-Exarchate-1870-1913.jpg. The reasons were partly the Bulgarian national renaissance and partly the insistence by the Patriarchate to suppress the national awaking/promote Hellenism or Greekness. You may remember the 1903 Ilinden Rebellion in the Macedonia and Adrinople regions against the Ottoman Turks. You may not know that it failed and was brutally suppressed by the Turks, aided and abetted by some of the Patriarchate's clergy who guided the Turkish troops to the Bulgarian villages. You know, people remember this knife in the back from a fellow Orthodox (and clergy to boot) better than any atrocity that comes from one's enemy. Do you need more evidence?

Actually, I'd like some substantiation for the above (not as a skeptic, actually - just to satisfy my interest in history).

All I can say is that this Very Reverend Doctor Archimandrite from the Phanar should have stayed in Istanbul--what a one-man wrecking crew!
And you should have stayed away from the keyboard.  You're attempting to rebut an address at a Theological school with complaints and whining; if you bring the facts to back up your statements, then fine by me, but don't presume to take the "moral/theological" high road if you can't prove you're there and aren't sure where it is on the map.

As OzGeorge says, thank you for your opinion.

I'd thank you for yours, but it's been nothing more than a waste of time and energy.
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« Reply #48 on: March 18, 2009, 10:46:26 PM »


Without a conciliar acceptance, if one of the five Patriarchates rejects it,  then it cannot be implemented.

Proof?

Germany, Holland, Switzerland, Britain, Ireland, etc., etc.  - all barbarian lands which were evangelised by Rome.   To my knowledge Constantinople did not make the slightest attempt to use Canon 28 to claim authority over these lands.

Context, dear Father.  (1) Each of those lands had been at least partially evangelized by Old Rome before Chalcedon; (2) even then, they were in the Western sphere of influence, which ceased in Orthodox eyes at the schism and was killed at the 4th Crusade; (3) when Old Rome was no longer in the Church, the expansion of the evangelization and area of responsibility of Constantinople would be natural, as it held the first-ranking place after Old Rome, and was the closest church geographically to the territories once considered Old Rome's.
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« Reply #49 on: March 18, 2009, 10:47:31 PM »

I believe that Fr Francis Dvornik showed in Byzantium and the Roman Primacy that Rome did in fact accept Chalcedon 28 after protesting it. It was only later that they reverted to the "we never accepted this" position. I don't have that book sitting here though. Maybe someone can cite the page if they have it, or show me if I am mistaken.

Father,

Why would the Church of Rome accept that all its missionary labours (and they were immense) in the barbarian lands such as Germany etc. was simply work done for Constantinople's benefit?   Were the Churches created by Rome in barbarian lands handed over to Constantinople?

The interpretation of Canon 28 has varied, and for instance we were taught that the barbarian lands were only those in the three provinces mentioned, not all barbarian lands everywhere. Here is an interesting discussion from an OCA POV:
http://www.svots.edu/Faculty/John-Erickson/articles/canon-28-english.html/

I have not read the whole article; just skimmed it and decided to post it. If it's already been mentioned in this thread I apologize. I also do not necessarily agree with everything in the article, but simply wish to provide a different perspective for those interested.
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« Reply #50 on: March 18, 2009, 11:22:45 PM »

Very much so, and I think issues such as these are much more important than the issue of multiple jurisdictions. While lamentable and uncanonical, the existence of multiple ethnic jurisdictions is not a direct impediment to the salvation of their faithful. Allowing the churches to be run by secular-minded laity, and the undermining, if not outright disdain for, orthopraxis and traditional forms of worship (it seems almost everything can be dismissed as insignificant as long as the "Big T vs. small t traditions" cliché is invoked) does create such an impediment imho.

I agree. I think one of the big issues is that as more converts join the Churches, they will bring their cultures into the Church- which is great, however, culture needs to be sanctified by the Church, and what is good retained, and what is not so good, and incompatible with Orthodox Tradition be rejected. But this isn't what is happening. What is happening is the notion that "all culture" in the "New Lands" of the Church must be absorbed and accepted as is- including such notions as "rugged individualism", "independence" etc.  But there is no such thing as complete independence in Orthodox Christianity- the Body of Christ cannot be divided. But what is happening in places where there are multiple jurisdictions is so close to denominationalism that it might as well be. But rather than using the Orthodox Church's Concilliar method of resolving such issues, the Churches in the New Lands seek to impose themselves- "We are the American Church- join us!", "No, we are the American Church, join us!"  They are using Protestant denominationalism to try and solve an issue which cannot possibly be solved that way. And not only that, it's ecclesiastical heresy.


We can thank Met. Arbish. EP Pope Meletious ? III IV II for that.

Can anyone name or point out a Greek bishop that was anywhere near America before Bp. Meletios the many numbered?

Who consecrated the first GO parish in New Orleans?  The Cathedral in New York?  Does anyone know?
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« Reply #51 on: March 18, 2009, 11:34:19 PM »

OK. Enough.
Let's take a break from insulting Orthodox Hierarchs.
I'm temporarily locking this thread so people cool down and go and check their facts.
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« Reply #52 on: March 20, 2009, 06:10:50 PM »

This thread is now unlocked.
Please stay on topic and keep things civil.
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« Reply #53 on: March 20, 2009, 09:17:15 PM »

I'll pick up where I left off:


Can anyone name or point out a Greek bishop that was anywhere near America before Bp. Meletios the many numbered?

Who consecrated the first GO parish in New Orleans?  The Cathedral in New York?  Does anyone know?
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« Reply #54 on: March 20, 2009, 10:47:02 PM »

I'll pick up where I left off:


Can anyone name or point out a Greek bishop that was anywhere near America before Bp. Meletios the many numbered?

Who consecrated the first GO parish in New Orleans?  The Cathedral in New York?  Does anyone know?

1.  Bishop Silas of Blessed Memory (founder of the then Diocese of New Jersey) in 1960 at the reconstructed original location a decade after the original building was demolished.  96 years passed between founding and consecration.

Quote
Due to the necessity for a larger church, the original building was demolished, with a new edifice constructed in its place in 1950. In 1960, the 15th Biennial Clergy-Laity Congress, supreme legislative body for the administration of the entire Greek Orthodox Archdiocese, authorized the consecration of the Holy Trinity Church as a Cathedral. On Sunday, October 9th, 1960, His Grace Bishop Silas of Amphipolis was ordained at Holy Trinity by His Eminence Archbishop Iakovos, Primate of North and South America, His Eminence Archbishop Athenagoras, Primate of Europe, and Metropolitan Polyefktos, head of the Diocese of South America. On that same day, Holy Trinity was consecrated as a Cathedral and served, until 1965, as the See of the Diocese for the Eighth Archdiocesan District. In 1961, Holy Trinity was further honored to welcome His Beatitude Patriarch Benedictos I of Jerusalem during his visit to America.

2.  Archbishop Demetrios in 2001 at the current location.

Source for both excerpts from Holy Trinity's History

Quote
Another milestone was reached on February 3rd and 4th, 2001, with the Consecration of the new Cathedral edifice.
His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios of America, along with His Grace Bishop Alexios of Atlanta and His Grace Bishop John of Amorion, presided over the weekend's events assisted, among other clergy, by the present Dean of the Cathedral Rev. Fr. Anthony Stratis, and former Deans Rev. Fr. William G. Gaines, Rev. Fr. Demetrios S. Katerlis, Rev. Fr. Nicholas Pastrikos, and Rev. Fr. Nicholas W. Jonas. Events included a luncheon at the Nicholas Benachi House, a Trisagion at the Greek Orthodox Mausoleum at St. Louis Cemetery #3 (for the souls of the departed clergy of New Orleans, including Metropolitan Silas, and of the founder Nicholas Benachi), a dialogue with the youth of Holy Trinity, the Consecration services with the entombing into the Holy Altar of the Holy Relics of St. George the Triumphant, St. Demetrios the Myyrhflowing, and the Holy Fathers Martyred in Raitho (also including the Relics from the Consecration of the original church and names of the living and departed that were offered by the faithful), receptions, the Celebration Banquet at the Hellenic Center, and a concluding dinner at the New Orleans Country Club. Chairpersons for the Consecration were Charles and Helen Malachias, and the Honorary Chairpersons were Capt. Lucas and Kay Ktistakis. The Consecration is an event which occurs once in the lifetime of a church edifice and is analogous to a service of Baptism and Chrismation.
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« Reply #55 on: March 21, 2009, 12:15:29 AM »

I'll pick up where I left off:


Can anyone name or point out a Greek bishop that was anywhere near America before Bp. Meletios the many numbered?

Who consecrated the first GO parish in New Orleans?  The Cathedral in New York?  Does anyone know?

1.  Bishop Silas of Blessed Memory (founder of the then Diocese of New Jersey) in 1960 at the reconstructed original location a decade after the original building was demolished.  96 years passed between founding and consecration.

Quote
Due to the necessity for a larger church, the original building was demolished, with a new edifice constructed in its place in 1950. In 1960, the 15th Biennial Clergy-Laity Congress, supreme legislative body for the administration of the entire Greek Orthodox Archdiocese, authorized the consecration of the Holy Trinity Church as a Cathedral. On Sunday, October 9th, 1960, His Grace Bishop Silas of Amphipolis was ordained at Holy Trinity by His Eminence Archbishop Iakovos, Primate of North and South America, His Eminence Archbishop Athenagoras, Primate of Europe, and Metropolitan Polyefktos, head of the Diocese of South America. On that same day, Holy Trinity was consecrated as a Cathedral and served, until 1965, as the See of the Diocese for the Eighth Archdiocesan District. In 1961, Holy Trinity was further honored to welcome His Beatitude Patriarch Benedictos I of Jerusalem during his visit to America.

2.  Archbishop Demetrios in 2001 at the current location.

Source for both excerpts from Holy Trinity's History

Quote
Another milestone was reached on February 3rd and 4th, 2001, with the Consecration of the new Cathedral edifice.
His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios of America, along with His Grace Bishop Alexios of Atlanta and His Grace Bishop John of Amorion, presided over the weekend's events assisted, among other clergy, by the present Dean of the Cathedral Rev. Fr. Anthony Stratis, and former Deans Rev. Fr. William G. Gaines, Rev. Fr. Demetrios S. Katerlis, Rev. Fr. Nicholas Pastrikos, and Rev. Fr. Nicholas W. Jonas. Events included a luncheon at the Nicholas Benachi House, a Trisagion at the Greek Orthodox Mausoleum at St. Louis Cemetery #3 (for the souls of the departed clergy of New Orleans, including Metropolitan Silas, and of the founder Nicholas Benachi), a dialogue with the youth of Holy Trinity, the Consecration services with the entombing into the Holy Altar of the Holy Relics of St. George the Triumphant, St. Demetrios the Myyrhflowing, and the Holy Fathers Martyred in Raitho (also including the Relics from the Consecration of the original church and names of the living and departed that were offered by the faithful), receptions, the Celebration Banquet at the Hellenic Center, and a concluding dinner at the New Orleans Country Club. Chairpersons for the Consecration were Charles and Helen Malachias, and the Honorary Chairpersons were Capt. Lucas and Kay Ktistakis. The Consecration is an event which occurs once in the lifetime of a church edifice and is analogous to a service of Baptism and Chrismation.

So, bottom line, the first Greek bishop to set foot in America, North America or the Americas was Arb. Meletios?
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« Reply #56 on: March 21, 2009, 12:23:19 AM »

And your point is...exactly what?
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« Reply #57 on: March 21, 2009, 01:16:15 AM »

So, bottom line, the first Greek bishop to set foot in America, North America or the Americas was Arb. Meletios?

Apparently, Yes.

Continuing the History Lesson from this Source:

Quote
Metropolitan of Athens Meletios Metaxakis arrived in America on October 20, 1918, an soon established the Synodical Council setting the pattern for centralized Church administration.

In effect, this was the first step towards the establishment of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of North and South America, which was incorporated in 1921, and officially recognized by the State of New York in 1922.

When Meletios was elected Ecumenical Patriarch Meletios IV in January,1922, one of his first official decrees on March 1st of that year was to restore the ecclesiastical jurisdiction of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese to the Ecumenical Patriarchate. This was formalized on May 11, 1922 when Patriarch Meletios declared the Church of America as an Archdiocese appointing the Rt. Rev. Alexander Titular Bishop of Rodostolon , as his Patriarchal Exarch here.

Regrettably, from 1922 to 1930 turbulent political events in Greece divided the Greeks in America, and the division also manifested itself here ecclesiastically. Fortunately, the necessity for religious unison and concord was quickly realized by the Greeks in this country, and this need was also understood by Ecumenical Patriarch Photios ll. Following a study of the situation of the Archdiocese, the Ecumenical Patriarch appointed Metropolitan Athenagoras of Corfu as Archbishop of North and South America on August 30, 1930. Archbishop Athenagoras arrived in New York on February 24, 1931 and began a long tenure which did not end until he was elected Ecumenical Patriarch on November 1,1948.

Archbishop Athenagoras used all of his powers of peacemaking and persuasion to bring harmony to the disunited communities. He centralized the Archdiocese, expanded the work of Clergy-Laity Congresses, established many new communities, founded St. Basil Academy and Teacher Training School in Garrison,NY, founded Holy Cross School of Theology in Pomfret, Connecticut, and in November 1931 during the Fourth Archdiocesan Clergy-Laity Congress established the Ladies Philoptochos Society, the official philanthropic organization of the Greek Orthodox Church in America.
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« Reply #58 on: March 21, 2009, 01:48:07 AM »

And your point is...exactly what?

Melotios was kicked out of Greece (having been kicked out of Jerusalem before) in 1920, having come briefly in 1918 to America, he returned.

By that time the Russian Church:
 
Had set up the sort of parishes like the ones in New Orleans and New York by the Greeks (i.e. unconsecrated) in North America for over a century and in the Continental United States couple of years shy of a century.  In fact, the Russian parishes were more canonical in that those in Alaska had priests sent by the Holy Synod and had episcopal supervision, i.e. had a valid antimens.

Had ordained an auxiliary bishop for Alaska for nearly a century and a quarter.

Had ordained an bishop who diocese included Alaska over three quarters of a century.

Had a cathedral consecrated by its bishop in Alaska nearly three quarters of a century earlier.

Had ordained an auxiliary bishop with a see in Alaska over half a century earlier.

Had ordained a bishop with a see in the continental United States, the auxiliary bishop consecrating a parish in New York nearly a half century earlier.

Nearly three decades had been receiving parishes from the Vatican, both Eastern and Western rite.

Over two decades earlier the bishop of San Francisco organized the Orthodox in another country, Canada.

Nearly two decades earlier had expanded the diocese to extend over all of North America explicitely, and elevated it to an archdiocese.

Over a decade earlier had ordained its own bishop, the first ordination in North America, for the Arab Orthodox, i.e. started its own vicarates, which were 4 with at least 4 bishops by the time Arb. Meletius came, and had diocesan bishops.

Over a decade earlier, the Archdiocese had its first Archdiocesan Synod Assembly.

Over a decade earlier it had elevated the New York parish into the Archdiocese Metropolitan Church.

Over a decade earlier had switched the commemoration in the DL from the Czar to the President of the United States, and authorized English translation of the services (Hapgood).

In short, when Arb. Meletios came to America, he chose to ignore an Archdiocese which had a long history and was fully functioning as the largest diocese of the Russian Orthodox Church, including several of its bishops becoming members of the Russian Governing Holy Synod, including the senior hierarch, the Metropolitan of Moscow, and with St. Tikhon, even Patriarch of Moscow.  And yet it was incorporating the other immigrant communities, even the Western, and establishing itself as a permanent fixture in America, i.e. NOT in diaspora.

If the author of the article in question worried about the Protestantization of Orthodoxy, there is the cure.
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« Reply #59 on: March 21, 2009, 02:13:58 AM »

Proving exactly what?

Your history is a gloss which ignores too much - too many inconvenient facts.
« Last Edit: March 21, 2009, 02:15:17 AM by Αριστοκλής » Logged

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« Reply #60 on: March 21, 2009, 02:17:56 AM »

Proving exactly what?

Your history is a gloss which ignores too much - too many inconvenient facts.

Such as....?
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« Reply #61 on: March 21, 2009, 02:46:54 AM »

Proving exactly what?

Your history is a gloss which ignores too much - too many inconvenient facts.

Such as....?
In your jihad against the Ecumenical Patriarch (any Patriarch of Constantinople apparently), you ignore the bits of relevant history, such as:
1) After 1917 the Russian Metropolia was effectively orphaned by its mother Moscow.
2) It was not in communion with any Orthodox church that I know of until 1970. Its canonical status was challenged to say the least. I was told outright in the 1950s that the "Russians" (meaning Metropolia) were "separated from us" and I was not allowed to go to their churches.
3) This cutoff from Moscow and subsequent canonical limbo could have been avoided by rapproachment with the ROCA bishops sent, but that did not happen.
4) If any precedence of the Russians existed in NA (and I think it did) THIS was the time to make the Metropolia an autocephalous church, instead of abandoning it as Moscow did.
5) All post 1917 activity happened at exactly the same time Greek immigration to the USA exploded (post WWI- Balkan Wars period + Greek/Turhish population exchange result) - several hundred thousand Greek Orthodox came through Ellis Island in a 5 year period (records online) and they wanted churches.

So, now I'm supposed to condemn my patriarch for providing for his flock with bishops and priests (and the Serbs, Romanians , and Antiochians theirs)?
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« Reply #62 on: March 21, 2009, 09:07:34 AM »

Due to Leif Ericsson, all of North America belongs to the Autonomous Church of Norway.
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« Reply #63 on: March 21, 2009, 09:33:48 AM »

Due to Leif Ericsson, all of North America belongs to the Autonomous Church of Norway.

Post of the year nomination!
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« Reply #64 on: March 21, 2009, 01:33:02 PM »

Proving exactly what?

Your history is a gloss which ignores too much - too many inconvenient facts.

Such as....?
In your jihad against the Ecumenical Patriarch
Jihad?  If I suggested that the "upcoming" Great Council demote Constantinople in the diptychs, that would be a jihad.

Quote
(any Patriarch of Constantinople apparently),

No, if there is any ire, it is against Bp. Arb. EP Pope Meletios ? III I IV II.

Quote
you ignore the bits of relevant history, such as:

I did forget one bit: the Russo-American treatises in over 50 years earlier had guarenteed the Orthodox in America retain the Church properties of the Diocese, and guarentees for its status.

Quote
1) After 1917 the Russian Metropolia was effectively orphaned by its mother Moscow.


Yes and no.  I just have time for a few points:

For starters, autocephaly had come to Moscow herself when her mother Constantinople had apostacized.

The Archbishop of North America Evdokim left America to attend the All Russia Sobor (Council) of 1917 which elected North America's former primate St. Tikhon as the (restored) Patriarch of Moscow, who in the early 1920's declared that all diocese's outside of Russia (which would have included, for instance, Finland, Ukraine, Byelorussia, Poland, Japan, etc.) should govern themselves autonomously. Arb. Evodokim could not return, so the All-American Sobor elected Bp. Alexander of Alaska (who had been so ordained in St. Petersburg, after serving as priest in PA, NJ and NY. As bishop he administrated the Archdiocese between Archb. Platon's recall to Russia and the arrival of Archb. Evodim, whereupon Bp. Alexander served as Bishop of Canada).   .  Pat. St. Tikhon's last undisputed act concerning North America before the ukaze to govern autonomously
http://www.orthodoxwiki.org/Ukaz_No._362
http://www.pomog.org/index.html?http://www.pomog.org/ukaz.htm
was his confirmation of Archb. Alexander's election, the first primate of North America elected locally.  Arch. Alexander proved overwhelmed by the chaos, and too nationalistic (he alienated the Ukraininans into setting up their own "Church," the predecessor of those Ukrainians under the EP that the speech talks about).  In 1921 the Russian hierarchs outside of Russia convened in Karlovski, including Arb. Alexander and his predecessor (and St. Tikhon's successor as Archb. of North America and the Aleutians), Arch. Platon, formed the Karlovski Synod and confirmed Archb. Alexander as primate of North America.  At the time, mind you, North America and the Aleustians was the only fully functioning diocese of the Russian Church, which was being torn by the "Living Church" schism: when the EP recognized the "Living Church" and its deposition of Pat. Tikhon, the subject of another thread
By Wireless to THE NEW YORK TIMES.
April 9, 1925, Thursday

“ . . . the Holy Synod succeeded in influencing the Ecumenical Patriarch of the Orthodox Church in Constantinople Gregory VII to endorse the decision of the Russian Conclave, which deposed and unfrocked Dr. Tikhon, thus  dealing the heaviest blow he had yet sustained.”

So, yes, the Metropolia was out of communion with the EP as they did not commune the heretical "Living Church."  It can't have been completely out of communion, though, as when Archb. Platon returned to the U.S., Archb. Alexander tendered a letter of resignation to him asking that he resume the role of primate.  This was when the Archdiocese was orphaned.  Archp. Alexander went to Mt. Athos, and then became a bishop of the EP in Brussels until 1946, when he returned under the PoM.  Archb. Platon resumed his duties for the orphaned Church.

The third All-American Council elected their former primate, Archb. Platon as Met. of All America and Canada.  While Pat. St. Tikhon confirmed the election, the Karlovski Synod questioned it.  Another All-American Council was held in 1924, confirming the election and authorizing Archb. Platon to establish temporary self government in accord with Pat. St. Tikhon's ukaze on autonomy of the dioceses outside of Russia, which his diocese was still the only fully functioning.  ROCOR condemned the move and "deposed" Arch. Platon.  So then the Metropolia was outside of communion with ROCOR, who was out of commmunion with the EP, who was in communion with the heretical "Living Church."


Quote
2) It was not in communion with any Orthodox church that I know of until 1970.

One bishop of the Metropolia dissented, Bp. Apollianary, and was expelled, and ROCOR thereupon "appointed" him primate of America while "deposing" Archb. Platon.  When Met. Platon refused to take or require loyalty oaths to the Soviet regime (by that time, the Metropolia had been praying, per the Governing Holy Synod and the Czar's directive, for the President of the United States for decades) the PoM "deposed" him, and set up the Russian Exarchate of North America, which was not in communion with the Metropolia, nor with ROCOR.  Was it in communion with the "Living Church" and the EP?

With the election of Met. Platon's successor, Archb. Theophilos (of Chicago, then) San Francisco, as Metropolitan of All America and Canada, ROCOR dropped its excommunication against the Metropolia and Met. Theophilos participated in the agreements between the Russian bishops not under the PoM brokered by Pat. Varnava of Serbia (who had participated as Serbia's representative in the All Russian Sobor of 1917, and thereafter involved in the restoration of the Serbian Patriarchate: since the EP didn't throw the usual trantrum over the restoration of abolished autocephalous and independent Churches, I assume he was in communion with the EP.  Btw, Pat. Varnave opposed the Vatican concordant which, like in Romania, gave it privledged status in a majority Orthodox country with it's own autocephaly, and excommunicated any deputy who voted for it, something of interest in view of the Council of Ravenna and all this protos talk and other nonsense coming from the EP's office: the Patriarch may have been martyred for this opposition).  Met. Theophilos insisted on autonomy, and the All American Council accepted the agreements, the ROCOR bishops participating in the Council but most of them abstaining from voting.  After WWII Met. Theophilos tried a reproachment with the again restored PoM: the All American Council petitioned the Patriarchate to accept the Metropolia as an autonomous part of the Russian Church, which caused a split again from ROCOR, while the PoM's Soviet insisted on policies that the Metropolia could not accept.

Quote
Its canonical status was challenged to say the least. I was told outright in the 1950s that the "Russians" (meaning Metropolia) were "separated from us" and I was not allowed to go to their churches.

This was the situation in the 50's, when the EP was in communion with the PoM controlled by the Soviets like he himself was controlled by the Turks, and with ROCOR, who was not in communion with the PoM nor the Metropolia.

The Metropolia was in communion with the autonomous Church of Japan: Met. Theophilos son, a military intelligence officer involved with the Manhattan Project and the Alsos Mission packed the services of Nikolai-Do, the seat of the primate of Japan, with Orthodox of all persuasions (many who were not in communion with ROCOR or the PoM) to prevent a Soviet take over of the Church of Japan, re-established the Church's hierarchy: Japan remained under the Metropolia until autocephaly, when it returned under the PoM.


Quote
3) This cutoff from Moscow and subsequent canonical limbo could have been avoided by rapproachment with the ROCA bishops sent, but that did not happen.

The Metropolia was not under the same situation as the other bishops in ROCOR: it was a diocese intact with a primate confirmed by the Holy Governing Synod and the Patriarch.  The EP bought these arguments from Met. Evlogy of Paris (whom Archb. Alexander had joined after abandoning the Metropolia), when he broke with ROCOR and joined the EP, what was the problem with Metropolia making the same arguments? except that the Metropolia was on even surer footing (Met. Platon having been first appointed primate of the Metropolia when the Church was still free, and the appointement by his successor/predecessor whose election in the intact Archdiocese as Metropolitan had been confirmed by the Patriarch and the Holy Synod before the autonomy ukaze, the source of ROCOR's authority) than Met. Evolgy.

Quote
4) If any precedence of the Russians existed in NA (and I think it did) THIS was the time to make the Metropolia an autocephalous church, instead of abandoning it as Moscow did.

Abandon it?  Moscow was kidnapped.

No, given the circumstances, it was not the time to do so.  The time to do so was when there was no question about authority, something that was not the case unfortunately under Pat. St. Tikhon, in part because of the "Living Church" schism endorsed by the EP, hence St. Tikhon's autonomy ukase.

Quote
5) All post 1917 activity happened at exactly the same time Greek immigration to the USA exploded (post WWI- Balkan Wars period + Greek/Turhish population exchange result) - several hundred thousand Greek Orthodox came through Ellis Island in a 5 year period (records online) and they wanted churches.

Funny, the Bulgarians wanted Churches in their own homeland, but the EP couldn't see fit to that.  Too busy Hellenizing them.

There were bishops interesting in helping: the Metropolia had already done so for the Arabs, Serbs and Albanians.  In fact, the Metropolia had helped found the Albania Church, when Greek priests refused to bury those who spoke Albanian. They knew where they were: the Metropolitan Church was in New York.  Had been for decades.  Ellis Island was also in New York, had been for decades.

The Greek Orthodox Church of the Holy Trinity in New Orleans doesn't have the original antimens (I can't help but have a feeling that Bp. Archp. EP Pope Meletius had something to do with that), but it does have a lovely Gospel Book, the gift of Czar Nicholas II to the parish.  They knew where they were (btw, the first priest there wasn't Greek, but Ukrainian).

In fact, Bp. Archp. EP Pope Meletius spent a good part organizing in San Francisco, far, far away from those teaming hordes of Greek in the East, but less than two miles away from the Russian Cathedral, a Cathedral since the see had been moved there a half century earlier.

Quote
Let us tell you a little bit about the history of the Annunciation Cathedral community. St. Sophia, precursor to the Annunciation Cathedral, came into being June 1921, when the parishioners of the Holy Trinity Church, sympathetic to Greek Prime Minister Eleftherios Venizelos, established a second Greek Orthodox community in San Francisco. Land was acquired at Hayes and Pierce streets, all of the lots facing Pierce street from Hayes to Fell streets, for the purpose of building a Cathedral and an adjoining school and orphanage. Ground was broken June 1921, with a ceremony where His Eminence Metropolitan Meletios Metaxakis, Archbishop of Athens, laid the cornerstone of the cathedral.

In 1962 the Annunciation was named Cathedral for the Metropolis of San Francisco.
http://www.annunciation.org/history.html

I.e. when the Metropolia Cathedral was approaching its centenary.

Quote
So, now I'm supposed to condemn my patriarch for providing for his flock with bishops and priests (and the Serbs, Romanians , and Antiochians theirs)?

Time's up. Gotta go.  But before I finish answering this last bit, are you saying that the EP provided for the Serbs, Romanians and Antiochians?
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« Reply #65 on: March 21, 2009, 01:43:03 PM »

Thanks for your more detailed reply. Of course in reading it one can't help but wonder why anyone would want their faithful involved in that Russian mess.

As to closing question: No, I am not so asserting. Each mother church provided for their own. So, while you are being critical of one, be fair, include all who are here.
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« Reply #66 on: March 21, 2009, 04:37:17 PM »

Thanks for your more detailed reply. Of course in reading it one can't help but wonder why anyone would want their faithful involved in that Russian mess.

And if the EP's mendling had started after the Bolshevik revolution, that may be point.  But it didn't: in 1908 gave juridiction over the Greek parishes in North America to the CoG. Problem, the EP didn't have jurisdiction the first place, Russia did.  And in 1908 the Russian Archdiocese of North America and Alaska had already had a long line of primates, in their own cathedral, with diocesan and auxiliary bishops with their cathedrals, including vicarates for non Russian nationalities (Antiochians/Arabs, Serbs, (and provisions for even WRO), reception of scores of those returning to Orthodoxy from the Vatican, and erected monasteries.  It had already had its first episcopal consecration, had its first All American Council, had begun the switch to the languages of the country (not only English, but the Amerindian languages too) and the commeration of the local government.  Canonized saints had already labored in her vineyard.

In contrast, nobody from Constantinople nor the CoG had been anywhere near the U.S. and wouldn't for 10 years.

Quote
THE GREEK ORTHODOX CHURCH IN AMERICA




In the United States, the first Greek Orthodox Church was founded in New Orleans, Louisiana in 1864 by a small colony of Greek merchants. The church was blessed by a Ukrainian priest, Father Agapius Honcharenko, who had immigrated to the USA via Athens, Greece in 1865. Though Ukrainian, he maintained the chapel at the residence of the Greek Consul-General in New York. After the American Civil War, immigration from Greece increased dramatically and in 1891 a church was opened in New York. In 1898, a second Greek Orthodox Church opened in Chicago.




The number of Greek Orthodox Churches in the United States continued to increase, and by 1910 there were 35 congregations around the country. Under an agreement made in 1908 between the Ecumenical Patriarchate and the Holy Synod of Athens, jurisdiction of these churches was given to the Church of Greece, but no steps were taken to organize an American diocese until 1918 when the Metropolitan of Athens himself visited the United States. Greek Orthodoxy in the USA continued at an intensified rate throughout the early part of the 20th Century, and by 1920 60% of current Greek communities and their churches were founded.

http://www.lasvegasorthodox.com/library/history/articles/history_of_the_Greek_orthodox_church.htm

{Also}
http://books.google.com/books?id=mcTvNg77kp4C&pg=PA35&lpg=PA35&dq=Church+of+Greece+1908&source=bl&ots=f8Ne0xt9s6&sig=fm0nwiH3aKMXcfWREcRH0hbmBnc&hl=en&ei=6FLFSffAB5_FtgevoYjJCg&sa=X&oi=book_result&resnum=4&ct=result

Now, that's not all bad. If the GOA had been part of the OCA recent problem could have been worse.

Quote
As to closing question: No, I am not so asserting. Each mother church provided for their own. So, while you are being critical of one, be fair, include all who are here.

Including my own Patriarchs: no, neither Antioch nor Alexandria should have ever opened up local branchs.  Antioch was particularly egregious in that regard.

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« Reply #67 on: March 21, 2009, 10:25:22 PM »

The Canonical Status of the Patriarch of Constantinople in the Orthodox Church

by Archbishop Gregory (Afonsky)

This small monograph is also useful for incorporation in this thread.  It contains a rebuttal from the 1920s of Constantinople's claims in America.

Please see

http://www.holy-trinity.org/ecclesiology/afonsky-constantinople.html
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« Reply #68 on: March 21, 2009, 10:32:49 PM »

Jihad?  If I suggested that the "upcoming" Great Council demote Constantinople in the diptychs, that would be a jihad.

Since the question of the diptychs is on the agenda for the Great Council there is no reason at all why this cannot be debated.

I think that it may be premature to legislate for such a change, since it may precipitate schism within Orthodoxy, but it can certainly be discussed as a future possibility.

Rome's authority was based on its position in the Empire - the canons more than make this clear.

Likewise Constantinople's was based on its position in the Empire.

With the demise of both the Roman and Byzantine Empires, the canons have fallen into limbo inasmuch as the underlying basis for them has been entirely removed.
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« Reply #69 on: March 22, 2009, 06:53:12 AM »

Quote
Including my own Patriarchs: no, neither Antioch nor Alexandria should have ever opened up local branchs.  Antioch was particularly egregious in that regard.

Thanks Isa. A gracious and honest answer which precludes any lengthy response by me. Of course, it does beg the question, "Why aren't you in the OCA"?  Wink

I was unaware of Alexandria having a presence in NA., btw.

Quote
In contrast, nobody from Constantinople nor the CoG had been anywhere near the U.S. and wouldn't for 10 years

This also is interesting to me. Both sides of my family were already here by 1907 and I have read a hard copy history of my baptismal parish detailing its formation in 1910. Both of my grandfathers were active in that formation. I wonder where their priest came from? The last surviving member of that founding group recently passed on (talk about long-lived) and I never thought to interview him.

I am immensely enjoying this topic. And I am beginning to glimpse the reasoning behind the patriarch's definition of 'diaspora' - not that I could succinctly word it here, yet.
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« Reply #70 on: March 22, 2009, 07:15:33 AM »

Jihad?  If I suggested that the "upcoming" Great Council demote Constantinople in the diptychs, that would be a jihad.

Since the question of the diptychs is on the agenda for the Great Council there is no reason at all why this cannot be debated.

I think that it may be premature to legislate for such a change, since it may precipitate schism within Orthodoxy, but it can certainly be discussed as a future possibility.

Rome's authority was based on its position in the Empire - the canons more than make this clear.

Likewise Constantinople's was based on its position in the Empire.

With the demise of both the Roman and Byzantine Empires, the canons have fallen into limbo inasmuch as the underlying basis for them has been entirely removed.

The canons are not in "limbo" just because there is no Roman Empire for them to remain part of the Roman Code of Laws.
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« Reply #71 on: March 22, 2009, 07:43:53 AM »

Jihad?  If I suggested that the "upcoming" Great Council demote Constantinople in the diptychs, that would be a jihad.

Since the question of the diptychs is on the agenda for the Great Council there is no reason at all why this cannot be debated.

I think that it may be premature to legislate for such a change, since it may precipitate schism within Orthodoxy, but it can certainly be discussed as a future possibility.

Rome's authority was based on its position in the Empire - the canons more than make this clear.

Likewise Constantinople's was based on its position in the Empire.

With the demise of both the Roman and Byzantine Empires, the canons have fallen into limbo inasmuch as the underlying basis for them has been entirely removed.

The canons are not in "limbo" just because there is no Roman Empire for them to remain part of the Roman Code of Laws.

You are right.  I am guilty of inaccurate expression.  Apologies.  Let me offer a correction.

1.  The "specifics" of the canons, whether for Rome or Constantinople, no longer apply.

2.  The "principle" of the canons -that the See of primary honour should be the city which holds the pre-eminence of political and spiritual power- this principle still applies.  In this instance both Rome and Constantinople do not satisfy the spirit of the criteria of the canons any longer.  We must look elsewhere in the Church.
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« Reply #72 on: March 22, 2009, 08:22:31 AM »

Of course, that is your contention.
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« Reply #73 on: March 22, 2009, 08:33:58 AM »

Of course, that is your contention.

A part of me, the untamed Irish part which enjoys a donnybrook, will enjoy the brawling which is likely to erupt when the Great Council gets to consider the diptychs.  The speech last Monday by the Very Reverend Archimandrite Elpidophoros is just one of Constantinople's opening salvos.   The other part of me trembles for the damage which the Patriarchs could do to the holy Church and her unity.
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« Reply #74 on: March 22, 2009, 09:00:39 AM »

Quote
Including my own Patriarchs: no, neither Antioch nor Alexandria should have ever opened up local branchs.  Antioch was particularly egregious in that regard.

Thanks Isa. A gracious and honest answer which precludes any lengthy response by me. Of course, it does beg the question, "Why aren't you in the OCA"?  Wink

Personal reasons (somewhere else on this thread I think Ozgeorge asked me): my then wife's confessor asked me to switch so he would have full authority to deal with the upcoming divorce.

I'll have to answer further why I don't consider it a problem, but I don't think I'll have time enough now before I have to get the boys up for Church.

Quote
I was unaware of Alexandria having a presence in NA., btw.

It has happened a couple of times.  I just came across this the other day:
Quote
List of American Bishops
American Orthodox bishops are men serving as bishops in some capacity, whether with dioceses or exercising authority of some kind in the United States and Canada. The dates following their names indicate the years during which they served as bishops in America. Church of Alexandria
Alexandrian Greek Orthodox Catholic Church in the United States, 1947-1950
Christopher (Contogeorge) of Pentapolis, 1947-1950
http://orthodoxwiki.org/List_of_American_bishops#Church_of_Alexandria

When I was in Cairo a missionary (or opportunist: I wasn't terribly impressed with the man. But then Afrocentrists try my patience) was elevated by the Pope to archimandirite.  It seemed what he said that a lot of the parishes were in the Caribbean.  I've been told Alexandria was bought off again by Constantinople and the Church of Greece (similar things happened with the Patriarchate of Jerusalem in America). The CofG funds certain parishes and things in Egypt too.  When the boy scotts came for an honor guard for the American embassador to Cyrpus (who was Greek) at a DL, their tags had the Greek, not the Egyptian, flag.

Quote
In contrast, nobody from Constantinople nor the CoG had been anywhere near the U.S. and wouldn't for 10 years

Quote
This also is interesting to me. Both sides of my family were already here by 1907 and I have read a hard copy history of my baptismal parish detailing its formation in 1910. Both of my grandfathers were active in that formation. I wonder where their priest came from? The last surviving member of that founding group recently passed on (talk about long-lived) and I never thought to interview him.

I am immensely enjoying this topic. And I am beginning to glimpse the reasoning behind the patriarch's definition of 'diaspora' - not that I could succinctly word it here, yet.

When you get the words, please post.

Not that it is related to your post, but before I forget: does any one have a copy of the Met. of Sardis' work on the EP, and could post the tome of the Council of Constantinople 1872, the "anti-Phyletism Synod"?

Is there an available text of the 1908 agreement between the EP and the CoG on America and Australia.  I think a lot of what's been going on here has its roots in what was going on there.  In 1908 Bulgaria declared its independence (the culmination of the events surrounding 1872) and the Young Turk revolution occured, which led to the CUP going from a reforminst group with lots of support from the Millets to an instrument of Turkification.
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« Reply #75 on: March 22, 2009, 09:08:54 AM »

Jihad?  If I suggested that the "upcoming" Great Council demote Constantinople in the diptychs, that would be a jihad.

Since the question of the diptychs is on the agenda for the Great Council there is no reason at all why this cannot be debated.

I think that it may be premature to legislate for such a change, since it may precipitate schism within Orthodoxy, but it can certainly be discussed as a future possibility.

Rome's authority was based on its position in the Empire - the canons more than make this clear.

Likewise Constantinople's was based on its position in the Empire.

With the demise of both the Roman and Byzantine Empires, the canons have fallen into limbo inasmuch as the underlying basis for them has been entirely removed.

The canons are not in "limbo" just because there is no Roman Empire for them to remain part of the Roman Code of Laws.

You are right.  I am guilty of inaccurate expression.  Apologies.  Let me offer a correction.

1.  The "specifics" of the canons, whether for Rome or Constantinople, no longer apply.

2.  The "principle" of the canons -that the See of primary honour should be the city which holds the pre-eminence of political and spiritual power- this principle still applies.  In this instance both Rome and Constantinople do not satisfy the spirit of the criteria of the canons any longer.  We must look elsewhere in the Church.
I'm pursuing this (painfully slowly) on the autocephaly thread.  Briefly:
1) Jerusalem didn't lose its authority, autocephaly and primacy when the city was destoryed, its original pool for the episcopacy (the Desposyni and Hebrew Chrisitans) dispersed.  Canon 7 of Nicea just reconizes that fact that the metropolis of Caesarea did not have the same authority as metropolis did elsewhere.
2) Even if it is not the capital of the Empire, it is still the See of St. Gregory Nazeanzis, St. John Chrysostom, the site of 3 (4,5) Ecumenical Councils, the Mother Church of much of Orthodoxy (at least 5 autocephalous Churches, including Russia), the Mother of the Liturgies of most of us, etc.
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« Reply #76 on: March 22, 2009, 09:11:30 AM »

Little wonder that ozgeorge wisely moved this topic into Free-For-All...
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« Reply #77 on: March 22, 2009, 11:51:00 AM »

Little wonder that ozgeorge wisely moved this topic into Free-For-All...

Seems an odd place, doesn't it, for a thread concerning a major position paper from Constantinople brought to America by its legate, the Very Reverend Archimandrite Elpidophoros, Chief Secretary of the Holy and Sacred Synod of Constantinople.   Huh
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« Reply #78 on: March 22, 2009, 11:55:44 AM »

Little wonder that ozgeorge wisely moved this topic into Free-For-All...

Seems an odd place, doesn't it, for a thread concerning a major position paper from Constantinople brought to America by its legate, the Very Reverend Archimandrite Elpidophoros, Chief Secretary of the Holy and Sacred Synod of Constantinople.   Huh

Why is Religious Topics in Free For All an odd place for it? Should it be in Non-Religious Topics?
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« Reply #79 on: March 22, 2009, 12:06:58 PM »

Little wonder that ozgeorge wisely moved this topic into Free-For-All...

Seems an odd place, doesn't it, for a thread concerning a major position paper from Constantinople brought to America by its legate, the Very Reverend Archimandrite Elpidophoros, Chief Secretary of the Holy and Sacred Synod of Constantinople.   Huh

Why is Religious Topics in Free For All an odd place for it? Should it be in Non-Religious Topics?

Well, perhaps I was mistaken and it is the right place really.   "Free For All" is intended for "hot topics that may be of a polemical nature" and I suppose you are indicating that the contentions of the Very Reverened Archimandrite Elpidophoros are polemical or possibly polemical.   They will be challenged by the faithful.
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« Reply #80 on: March 22, 2009, 12:44:41 PM »

I suppose you are indicating that the contentions of the Very Reverened Archimandrite Elpidophoros are polemical or possibly polemical.   
No, I don't think that in itself is polemical, but people on this thread want to be polemical about it hence the move, for example:
They will be challenged by the faithful.
So enjoy your polemics.
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« Reply #81 on: March 22, 2009, 02:41:14 PM »

I suppose you are indicating that the contentions of the Very Reverened Archimandrite Elpidophoros are polemical or possibly polemical.   
No, I don't think that in itself is polemical, but people on this thread want to be polemical about it hence the move, for example:
They will be challenged by the faithful.
So enjoy your polemics.

I thought you had in mind the polemical material included in the message from Constantinople to the United States.  I refer to the less than diplomatic words addressed by the Very Reverend Archimandrite to the Primates of other Orthodox Churches in America.  His words seem to lead inevitably to conflict betwen Constantinople and the OCA and the AOCNA.  Since one cannot imagine that a mere Archimandrite would be so insolent on his own authority one wonders if the message he delivered at Holy Cross was intended by Constantinople to spark controversy?
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« Reply #82 on: March 22, 2009, 02:56:20 PM »

You mean another mere monk's opinion? I guess we assume your bishop approves your stance here, good to know.
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« Reply #83 on: March 22, 2009, 09:31:01 PM »

In whose name?

Has there been any clarificiation as to whether the Very Reverend Archimandrite was speaking as a delegate of the global Primus at Holy Cross?  I  suppose that what I have in mind is whether, when he made the remarks about the Primi of the OCA and the AOCNA, he was speaking in his private capacity as a monk or was he speaking as a representative of the Sacred Synod and the global Primus?

Anybody know?    What about the forum's Holy Cross students?

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« Reply #84 on: March 22, 2009, 09:39:12 PM »

You mean another mere monk's opinion? I guess we assume your bishop approves your stance here, good to know.

Dear Aristoklis,

Apart from Fr Anastasios and Fr Chris who presumably have a blessing to be operating the forum, I do not imagine that anyone here has sought permision from their bishops before participating.

Surely it is simply taken for granted that participants are "chewing the fat" and expresing their own private opinions and not that of their Church.  I would not be surprised if that is not stated in the forum's Rules?

However, it may surprise you to know that my Patriarch issued a statemnt a few years back encouraging his clergy to take part in Internet discussions and to use the Net as a tool for educational and and missionary purposes.  In my years on CAF and now on OC.net I have found that there are opportinuties to accomplish what he suggested.
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« Reply #85 on: March 22, 2009, 10:01:08 PM »

In whose name?

Has there been any clarificiation as to whether the Very Reverend Archimandrite was speaking as a delegate of the global Primus at Holy Cross?  I  suppose that what I have in mind is whether, when he made the remarks about the Primi of the OCA and the AOCNA, he was speaking in his private capacity as a monk or was he speaking as a representative of the Sacred Synod and the global Primus?

Anybody know?    What about the forum's Holy Cross students?




Well, let's see:
Quote
Challenges of Orthodoxy in America

And the Role of the Ecumenical Patriarchate

By

Very Reverend Archimandrite

Dr. Elpidophoros Lambriniadis

Chief Secretary of the Holy and Sacred Synod

(Chapel of the Holy Cross, March 16, 2009)

It is an exceptional honor and a great joy for me to be here today, among you, with the blessing and permission of His All Holiness the Ecumenical Patriarch and the consent of His Eminence the Archbishop of America, in order to share with you some thoughts regarding the present condition of Orthodoxy in America and our Ecumenical Patriarchate’s position towards it.

 Having attempted this general evaluation of the American Orthodoxy, allow me to consider briefly the Holy Archdiocese of America, this most important eparchy of the Ecumenical Throne.

To this effect, the active participation of the lay element was, as we have seen, very important. We
"We"?  Doesn't sound like a monk.
Quote
believe that the younger generations of the omogeneia are free of the past’s prejudices and complexes, according to which, if you wish to succeed in America you have to forget your cultural patrimony and your language in order to be left naked, so to speak, in the thorny desert of the Wild West. Today’s omogeneia has overcome that denial and has come to understand that the secret of the American civilization’s success does not lie in the obliteration of one’s cultural background but rather in the free and harmonious co-existence of people and races who have come to this hospitable land seeking a life in freedom, in faith and in dignity. Our cultural heritage and our national conscience is not, by any means, an obstacle for our progress and for the successful witness to our faith, especially insofar as ecumenicity (οἰκουμενικότης) is the heart of Hellenism and by definition alien to any form of nationalism or cultural chauvinism.

Precisely because the Holy Archdiocese of America occupies such an esteemed position in this country we
there's that editorial, or is it royal? "we."
Quote
are obliged to offer a self-criticism but also to defend ourselves against the unjust accusations that target this jurisdiction of the Ecumenical Patriarchate.

On account of this canon, the Ecumenical Patriarchate has suffered the unfair and unjust criticism of two American Orthodox Hierarchs: Metropolitan Phillip and the newly elected Metropolitan Jonas.

            It is my duty to refute the injustice directed against the Mother Church of Constantinople for the sake of historical truth and for the sake of moral conscience.

Summarizing my lecture, I wish to call your attention to the following points:

As you surely know, last October the Ecumenical Patriarchate summoned in Constantinople a Synaxis of the Primates of the Orthodox Churches. The Primates accepted the proposal of Patriarch Bartholomew to move ahead with the Pan-Orthodox preparatory meetings, within 2009, so that the Holy and Great Synod of the Orthodox Church take place as soon as possible. For the record, please note that this decision was reached thanks to the concession on behalf of the Ecumenical Patriarchate which accepted that the Autonomous Churches will no longer be invited as to avoid the thorny problem of the Church of Estonia in the relations between Constantinople and Moscow.

1.   The Ecumenical Patriarchate is a Church that undergoes martyrdom, a Church that often has received unfair criticism, especially by those Churches which were most richly benefited by it. At no point, the spirit of nationalism took hold of the Ecumenical Patriarchate because that is incompatible with the concepts of Hellenism and Ecumenicity (ecumenical character) as well as with the Christian Orthodox faith. The proof of this emerges in the most decisive manner throughout the 17 centuries of its history, during which it never Hellenized, not even attempted to Hellenize the nations to which it gave through its apostolic missions the undying light of Christ. What better example than the Slavic tribes which owe even their alphabet to the Thessalonian brothers Cyril and Methodios. I, who speak to you tonight, although I am an Antiochean from my maternal side, nevertheless I serve as the Chief-Secretary of the Holy and Sacred Synod of the Church of Constantinople.

I think we have the answer to your question. Roll Eyes

Btw, I just noticed something:
Quote
I do not support the opinion that the services here in America should be done exclusively in Greek. Simply I do not understand how it is possible that any priest of the Archdiocese might not be able to serve in both languages. It is not understandable how an institution of higher education cannot manage to teach its students a language, even in the time span of four years!

Metropolitan Jonas claims that in America “there is no common expression of unity that supersedes ethnic linguistic and cultural divisions.” Does His Eminence ignore the fact that under the canonical jurisdiction of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in America belong Greeks, Palestinians, Albanians, Ukrainians and Carpathorussians? Is this not proof enough of a common structure that supersedes ethnic and cultural divisions? Does he imply perhaps that SCOBA either constitutes a common expression of unity that supersedes such divisions?



So those Palestinians, Albanians, Ukrainians and Carpathorussians might not be able to serve in both Greek and English?

I recall when the EP was here and celebrated at the Carpathorussian diocese.  Many complained that he couldn't even do a simple litany in Slavonic. It was purely in Greek.
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« Reply #86 on: March 22, 2009, 11:07:49 PM »

They aren't in "the Archdiocese."

And no, he was there on his own - all people that work for the Patriarchate refer to it in the plural, since there are quite a few people who work for the Patriarchate - they see it in terms of "Patriarch, Synod, Clergy, Deacons, and lay staff."
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« Reply #87 on: March 22, 2009, 11:55:06 PM »

Dear Cleveland,

First, I would like to give our exchange a little context. My youngest child is a bit older than you and I feel slightly disoriented by the blunt and disrespectful language you use, as shown in the quote below:

Quote
Are you a man "who sees through the facade and doesn't buy it," or "who is confronted with the truth and doesn't buy it."  Believe it or not, the EP doesn't micromanage his priests, and does allow them to go and speak as they wish.  He didn't "send him to confront the Metropolitans," and since you've decided to make the claim, you're going to have to prove it or have your statements rendered irrelevant.  Without any semblance of logic or substantiation, your cries of "lapdog" to Fr. Elpidoforos will look as pathetic to everyone else as they do to me.

I will say that I hold to my opinion that I arrived at with some knowledge of how large bureaucracies operate and the words of the esteemed Doctor himself.

You took great exception when I contradicted the Archimandrite's claim that "At no point, the spirit of nationalism took hold of the Ecumenical Patriarchate because that is incompatible with the concepts of Hellenism and Ecumenicity (ecumenical character) as well as with the Christian Orthodox faith. The proof of this emerges in the most decisive manner throughout the 17 centuries of its history, during which it never Hellenized, not even attempted to Hellenize the nations to which it gave through its apostolic missions the undying light of Christ."  I said "This is a complete lie, the opposite of historical truth, and one which I am sure would not be presented to the non-Greek populations of the Balkans."

You challenged me to substantiate my view and I reluctantly did so: "Are you familiar with the reestablishment of the Bulgarian Church in the 19th century? It was called the Bulgarian Exarchate and covered all of Modern day Bulgaria, almost all of modern day northern Greece, and the current Republic of Macedonia. A German map showing the boundaries may be found at http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/c/ce/Bulgarian-Exarchate-1870-1913.jpg. The reasons were partly the Bulgarian national renaissance and partly the insistence by the Patriarchate to suppress the national awaking/promote Hellenism or Greekness. You may remember the 1903 Ilinden Rebellion in the Macedonia and Adrinople regions against the Ottoman Turks. You may not know that it failed and was brutally suppressed by the Turks, aided and abetted by some of the Patriarchate's clergy who guided the Turkish troops to the Bulgarian villages. You know, people remember this knife in the back from a fellow Orthodox (and clergy to boot) better than any atrocity that comes from one's enemy. Do you need more evidence? [/quote]

You asked for some substantiation "just to satisfy my interest in history." I will give you two additional sources. But, before I do that I should say on the record that since the birth of nationalism, almost all nations have done very bad things in their nation-building phase. In my mind, this was particularly true in the Balkans: one's own character and qualities were exaggerated as were the faults of the "enemy." Nonetheless, it is a fantasy to maintain that the Patriarchate of Constantinople did not practice Hellenism of the "Greek Chauvinist" kind. What do I mean by that? The very reason for the re-establishment of the Bulgarian Church/Exarchate was the centuries old attempt to equate Orthodoxy with Greekness or Hellenism. The Patriarchate used many techniques, the most prominent of which was the denial to the people the use their own native language and the assignment of Greek clergy.

The answer to your question is this: For the claim that Greek clergy guided the Turks to the Bulgarian villages and fighters (chetniks) my source was my grandfather who was an eyewitness of this as a Ilinden chetnik.

However, possibly the best neutral study of the Balkan cauldron is the Report of the International Commission to inquire into the causes and conduct of the Balkan wars by International Commission to Inquire into the Causes and Conduct of the Balkan Wars.; Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Division of Intercourse and Education, 1914. If you use a global library search, you may find if it is readily available in Northern Ohio university libraries.

I hope you will delay reading this book for a month or so because it contains many sickening details. I also want to say to everybody that I regret bringing up these things--not in the middle of Lent anyway. I am truly sorry.


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« Reply #88 on: March 23, 2009, 12:08:36 AM »

However, possibly the best neutral study of the Balkan cauldron is the Report of the International Commission to inquire into the causes and conduct of the Balkan wars by International Commission to Inquire into the Causes and Conduct of the Balkan Wars.; Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Division of Intercourse and Education, 1914. If you use a global library search, you may find if it is readily available in Northern Ohio university libraries.

I hope you will delay reading this book for a month or so because it contains many sickening details. I also want to say to everybody that I regret bringing up these things--not in the middle of Lent anyway. I am truly sorry.

Another good work, thankfully, less bloody:
The Russian Presence in Syria and Palestine, 1843-1914 By Derek Hopwood
http://books.google.com/books?id=Wvy6AAAAIAAJ&q=The+Russian+Presence+in+Syria+and+Palestine,+1843-1914&dq=The+Russian+Presence+in+Syria+and+Palestine,+1843-1914&pgis=1

Gives a good summary of how the PoM liberated the Arab Orthodox in Syria from the Episcopal cartel in the Phanar.
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« Reply #89 on: March 23, 2009, 07:37:38 AM »

Dear Cleveland,

First, I would like to give our exchange a little context. My youngest child is a bit older than you and I feel slightly disoriented by the blunt and disrespectful language you use, as shown in the quote below:

Quote
Are you a man "who sees through the facade and doesn't buy it," or "who is confronted with the truth and doesn't buy it."  Believe it or not, the EP doesn't micromanage his priests, and does allow them to go and speak as they wish.  He didn't "send him to confront the Metropolitans," and since you've decided to make the claim, you're going to have to prove it or have your statements rendered irrelevant.  Without any semblance of logic or substantiation, your cries of "lapdog" to Fr. Elpidoforos will look as pathetic to everyone else as they do to me.

I will say that I hold to my opinion that I arrived at with some knowledge of how large bureaucracies operate and the words of the esteemed Doctor himself.

Well, I suppose I should also provide context to my comments as well: my comments may have been blunt, but do not presume to read into them that I do not respect you; far from it.  Anyone willing to contribute to the dialogue in a meaningful way deserves respect.  However, I do not believe that all positions and assertions deserve respect, which is why at varying points I will not respect them if I find (from my perspective) some flaw in them, especially if said flaw seems to be fundamental to their argument (rather than, say, some minor flaw in the presentation or in the periphery of the argument).

You took great exception when I contradicted the Archimandrite's claim that "At no point, the spirit of nationalism took hold of the Ecumenical Patriarchate because that is incompatible with the concepts of Hellenism and Ecumenicity (ecumenical character) as well as with the Christian Orthodox faith. The proof of this emerges in the most decisive manner throughout the 17 centuries of its history, during which it never Hellenized, not even attempted to Hellenize the nations to which it gave through its apostolic missions the undying light of Christ."  I said "This is a complete lie, the opposite of historical truth, and one which I am sure would not be presented to the non-Greek populations of the Balkans."

You challenged me to substantiate my view and I reluctantly did so: "Are you familiar with the reestablishment of the Bulgarian Church in the 19th century? It was called the Bulgarian Exarchate and covered all of Modern day Bulgaria, almost all of modern day northern Greece, and the current Republic of Macedonia. A German map showing the boundaries may be found at http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/c/ce/Bulgarian-Exarchate-1870-1913.jpg. The reasons were partly the Bulgarian national renaissance and partly the insistence by the Patriarchate to suppress the national awaking/promote Hellenism or Greekness. You may remember the 1903 Ilinden Rebellion in the Macedonia and Adrinople regions against the Ottoman Turks. You may not know that it failed and was brutally suppressed by the Turks, aided and abetted by some of the Patriarchate's clergy who guided the Turkish troops to the Bulgarian villages. You know, people remember this knife in the back from a fellow Orthodox (and clergy to boot) better than any atrocity that comes from one's enemy. Do you need more evidence?

I need not remind you, who has studied the issues that have festered within the Balkans, that the actions of one or even a number of clergy may not represent official positions of their respective churches/ Patriarchates.  I'm sure there are examples of clergy from all the different jurisdictions (Romanian, Greek, Serbian, Bulgarian, Russian) involved in the Balkans of atrocities and poor decision making on a local level that wasn't related to policy or direction on a Church-wide level.  I'm not asserting that your point isn't true, just that the evidence only points to local collusion, not systemic.

You asked for some substantiation "just to satisfy my interest in history." I will give you two additional sources. But, before I do that I should say on the record that since the birth of nationalism, almost all nations have done very bad things in their nation-building phase. In my mind, this was particularly true in the Balkans: one's own character and qualities were exaggerated as were the faults of the "enemy."

And I did mean what I said: I wasn't asking for substantiation out of some sense of skepticism, but rather because I enjoy the study of history, and am intrigued by the accounting of history in the Balkans of my ancestors.

Nonetheless, it is a fantasy to maintain that the Patriarchate of Constantinople did not practice Hellenism of the "Greek Chauvinist" kind. What do I mean by that? The very reason for the re-establishment of the Bulgarian Church/Exarchate was the centuries old attempt to equate Orthodoxy with Greekness or Hellenism. The Patriarchate used many techniques, the most prominent of which was the denial to the people the use their own native language and the assignment of Greek clergy.

Again, I don't doubt the possibility of your argument being true and valid; and certainly consider the possibility that it is completely true to be tragic - it would be better if there was clear evidence to oppose your statements in their totality, however such evidence doesn't exist, making this discussion necessary and the possible outcome of the study tragic.  But, again, collusion on the local level does not equate to a system-wide action plan in the same direction.

The answer to your question is this: For the claim that Greek clergy guided the Turks to the Bulgarian villages and fighters (chetniks) my source was my grandfather who was an eyewitness of this as a Ilinden chetnik. 

Noted.  For me, eyewitness accounts, while considered unreliable for court purposes, are generally quite valid in the understudied history of the Balkans (read: thank you, yes I believe you and your grandfather, and consider the substance of his claim to be a tragedy brought upon an Orthodox community by other Orthodox Christians).

However, possibly the best neutral study of the Balkan cauldron is the Report of the International Commission to inquire into the causes and conduct of the Balkan wars by International Commission to Inquire into the Causes and Conduct of the Balkan Wars.; Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Division of Intercourse and Education, 1914. If you use a global library search, you may find if it is readily available in Northern Ohio university libraries.

I hope you will delay reading this book for a month or so because it contains many sickening details. I also want to say to everybody that I regret bringing up these things--not in the middle of Lent anyway. I am truly sorry.

The book is actually in the Google Books library; I have downloaded it.  It will take quite a bit of time to get through it, though, and since it is scanned I cannot search it to more quickly come to the sections more germane to our discussion.
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