OK. Time for someone to play a little Devil's advocate (well, not really - I'm going to be way too balanced).
Even though I agree that the dear retired Bishop acts like an old fuddy-duddy, he has some great points.
It's nice when the brethren dwell together in unity, even "good and
pleasant". But that is as far as it goes. Is this bunch with the new
grandiose title going to DO anything BESIDES show themselves standing in unity?
What Gospel imperative related to caring for human beings motivates
their gathering? Are they founding a children's hospital? Opening a
soup kitchen? Surely someone wanting to generate some kind of "joint
Orthodox" behavior could come up with something more helpful than
another grandiose commemoration of the past to which the present has
less and less spiritual resemblance? ANOTHER Sunday of Orthodoxy
"Pan" Orthodox Liturgy? American Orthodox Hierarchs have been
putting on that sort of show since Saint Tikhon's time. That sort of
show, the way I understand it, was meant to be originally the start
of something real, not an end in itself!
How is the above incorrect? Seriously - think about it. While I agree that this doesn't mean "do nothing", he has a great point. Unless something really DOES come from it, it is really just a bunch of warm fuzzies.
Bishop Tikhon had his chance but he wasn't interested in Orthodox unity. From what I understand he lived in a delusional world of 19th century Russia while he was in charge. My bishop tried to meet with him when he first was assigned to the diocese of the west. Bishop Tikhon wanted nothing to do with him. There are rumors Bishop Tikhon has a mental disorder (a bipolar problem or depression). I would guess he has the former from his prolific writings on the internet and intelligence factor. No one should take what he says seriously. The man needs professional help. The former Greek bishop also was not interested in meeting with Bishop Joseph.
Don't you think you're being just a bit mean toward the dear retired Bishop? Yes, he has problems of depression, is on medication and has admitted this in public. Per the above, maybe he had serious legitimate disagreements with Bishop Joseph. Maybe he didn't like his modus operandi? I have to say, that I've heard several things that I've not agreed with about decisions Bp. Joseph has made. Of course, I disagree with many things Bp. Tikhon did or his methods as well. About the only (SCOBA) bishops that I've never heard a bad word about are Bps. Basil Essey and Seraphim of Ottawa. But, they're all human and sinners like the rest of us. I would say that I definitely don't think Bp. Joseph is a BAD bishop per se.
But times and bishops have changed. All the new bishops seem to be aligned in purpose and they actually seem to enjoy one another's company!
They seem to stress their goal of speaking with one voice for Orthodoxy at each meeting so I am encouraged with what may eventually come of their desire to bring us together.
Orthodox laity across the United States are very heartened by what they see these bishops doing. What they are doing could be repeated across North America if there are bishops in place who see eye to eye.
You know, I like these get togethers - I really do. It is very encouraging to the faithful (especially us younger folk), stimulates optimism for unity, etc. It makes us think that something towards unity actually COULD happen soon. BUT, it is all just for show unless something does indeed happen.