They got rid of the point system almost three years ago!
Are you stating that they brought it back? I have to check and see if I got some!
It's a different "point" system than the old "rep" system. I think it came into play after the big crash. As I understand it, it's a negative system - no rep points involved. There are warnings which come w/o points and infractions that come w/ points. Points are assessed by the mods and most have an expiration date - but they can be permanent. A total of X number will result in "account under review" status; another X number can get you suspended; still another results in banning. If you have any, they are only visible to you - on your profile, I think. There was (may still be) a thread that explained it - probably in one of the subfora in that Conceirage Desk Forum or whatever it's called.
From what I understand, it's discretionary as to whether mods use that method or just PM/e-mail warnings, and outright put people "under review", suspend, etc as they see fit. I know Joe wasn't enamored of the point process and didn't use it much, sticking mainly to a combo of the old-fashioned technique and the occasional public dressing-down broadly directed at everyone who contributed to the downhill slide of a particular thread.
BTW, what is bpbasilphx's affiliation? I do enjoy his posts.
bpbasilphx is an "independent" - what I would typically have termed a vagante
a few years ago. Since then, I've mellowed a bit and now distinguish in my mind (and reaction) between true vagante
- with all the negative connotations that usually accompany that term - and so-called "independent" Catholic/Orthodox.
To the former camp, I consign those who like to dress-up and turn their famly room (or garage) into their cathedral every Sunday for the edification of their spouse and a couple friends whose fondest wish is that they owned a cope and mitre as nice as those worn by the "patriarch", "primate", metropolitan", or whatever styling they've adopted. Others exist only on-line - the wonders of cheap websites, a digital camera, and a bit of skill at web-design. But, there are also some among the vagante
who have managed to acquire a "church" - be it a storefront or a former church of another faith, albeit the more expansive surroundings don't change what they are. (One note, vagante
used to have a short-life of about 6 months, give or take; these days, there are some whose careers I've followed for 20 years or more.) Such folk, regardless of where they garnered their episcopal orders, are usually of a strange theological bent and spiritually dangerous to those who become involved with them.
Then, there are the "independents" - it is, admittedly, an artificial distinction and one for which I'll undoubtedly take some flak. The terminology originally developed among some of the "Old Catholic-type" Churches (I use that phrasing purposefully, because there really have never been any true "Old Catholic Churches" in the US - not in the sense of being in union with Utrecht - with the exception of the Polish National Catholics, who have now broken that communion because of Utrecht's ordaining females) and was adopted by some of the "Orthodox-type" Churches (not Old Calendrists nor any of the other "non-canonical" but essentially mainstream Orthodox).
As the number of these "independents" has grown, I started to detect what I perceived as distinguishing features among them. Some were out-and-out vagante
, no matter how much they protested to the contrary or how they labeled themselves. Others adhered very closely to a theology that was difficult to distinguish from that of the Apostolic Churches, Catholic or Orthodox. These latter avoided female ordination, same-sex marriages, promoted very traditional liturgical praxis - in accordance with that of whichever Church it was with which they identified, and seemed to be genuinely seeking to pastorally serve those who came into their purview, but who (for one reason or another) could not reconcile themselves with Catholicism or Orthodoxy.
I got to personally know, through correspondence or e-mail, a few such hierarchs whom I could not honestly describe as other than well-intentioned, spiritual men, who have undoubtedly led some people to God. This despite their separation from the Churches that most of us would consider to be the likely avenues for achieving salvation. Bishop Basil, I believe, fits that mold.
He was tonsured a rassaphore monk in the late '70s, not sure what jurisdiction, but I suspect Romanian Orthodox. A decade plus later, he was ordained to the presbyterate by an "independent bishop". I think, but am not certain, that it was the same hierarch who was the principal consecrator when he was raised to the episcopate himself, a few years later. His episcopal lineage is through the so-called Duarte-Costa Line of independent Catholics who came out of Brazil.
He has a single church and a small congregation, located in Phoenix. It apparently is served by him and a single presbyter. It's a fairly common practice among such hierarchs to episcopally ordain multiple clones of themselves, thus adding to the craziness and spread of their self-styled Churches. As far as I know (and I track the genre fairly closely), Bishop Basil has not, in the 10 years since his own rise to the rank of bishop, ordained any other bishops. He formerly had a website (I don't see it out there presently), which suggested that he was not at all "off-the-reservation" in his theology and, as those who have read his posts will agree (I think), he demostrates a rather excellent grasp of Eastern spirituality. I do know that he has an interest in regularizing his status with Rome or Constantinople, although I don't know what he's done to advance that goal.
Two friends and I were discussing the situation and agreed that, under the (Catholic) Augustinian Theory of Succession, he could make a strong case for recognition by Rome and, although he'd fail the (Orthodox) Cyprianic Theory of Succession, it wasn't beyond the realm of possibility that someone somewhere in Orthodoxy would accord him recognition under oekonomia. Since then, I've elected to address him by his dignity.
My suspicion, he posts at CAF because he can do so there without reprecussion since the policy allows non-Roman Catholic clerics to post provided that it is clear from their profile or signature that they are not in communion with Rome.
Ok, I just noticed (and am bothered) by what Jetavan reported seeing on his profile. I checked and it does indeed say "Orthodox" unadorned by any qualifier or disclaimer. It seems to me that either his profile or signature was previously more forthcoming - that he termed himself either as "Catholic" or "Orthodox" - but that it was accompanied by language that made it obvious that he was neither Roman
Catholic nor Eastern
Orthodox (whichever was appropriate to how he styled himself). Father Ambrose, do you remember?
As I was about to say before discovering that his profile isn't quite up-front, I think he'd be disinclined to post here or at ByzCath, because I suspect that he'd be concerned about being slammed for his unconventional affiliation. Which is too bad, because I do think he's well-intentioned and a good person.