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Seeker73
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« on: April 23, 2008, 06:45:28 PM »

Hello everyone,

I'm an ordained Protestant pastor who has spent several years researching Church history, and this has brought me (after a lengthy faith journey) to the Orthodox Church.  I've been attending an OCA parish for a little while now, and I'm planning to become a catechumen soon.  I'm wondering if anyone knows of any Orthodox groups (whether in person or online) that are targeted towards Protestant pastors who convert to the Orthodox faith?  I would like to get in touch and communicate with other pastors who have left their denominations and joined the Church as I am in the process of doing. 
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« Reply #1 on: April 23, 2008, 07:16:50 PM »

I noticed your bio said N. Carolina. Where abouts? I am 5 mi south of Murphy, across the state line (in GA). From this forum's perspective, we're neighbors, even if you are in the far north.  laugh

As far as your question,  I know I've run into more than a few across the years, but matching up the Minister part to the specific people is eluding me at the moment. It seems to my memory that several of the Priests that I met actually were Ministers prior to converting. But it is just a fuzzy memory at best.

I'm sure someone can steer you in the right direction.
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« Reply #2 on: April 23, 2008, 07:43:48 PM »

Check out http://media.www.ntdaily.com/media/storage/paper877/news/2005/02/22/UndefinedSection/Reverend.Speaks.On.His.Conversion-1892984.shtml

and http://fatherstephen.wordpress.com/2006/10/30/lutheran-pastor-to-convert-to-orthodoxy/
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« Reply #3 on: April 23, 2008, 11:38:07 PM »

I'm wondering if anyone knows of any Orthodox groups (whether in person or online) that are targeted towards Protestant pastors who convert to the Orthodox faith?

I would highly recommend reading Becoming Orthodox by Father Peter Gillquist.  He was part of a group of Protestant ministers who all researched church history.  Eventually, they and many in their congregations all became Orthodox together.  I read this book a few years ago... it really goes into the worries, concerns and frustrations they all had... as well as the answersSmiley

Read the customer reviews of the book here:
http://www.amazon.com/review/product/0962271330/ref=dp_top_cm_cr_acr_txt?%5Fencoding=UTF8&showViewpoints=1


I would like to get in touch and communicate with other pastors who have left their denominations and joined the Church as I am in the process of doing. 

You could probably obtain Father Gillquist's contact information from OC.net

God bless you in your journey!  Smiley
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« Reply #4 on: April 23, 2008, 11:50:16 PM »

I noticed your bio said N. Carolina. Where abouts? I am 5 mi south of Murphy, across the state line (in GA). From this forum's perspective, we're neighbors, even if you are in the far north.  laugh

As far as your question,  I know I've run into more than a few across the years, but matching up the Minister part to the specific people is eluding me at the moment. It seems to my memory that several of the Priests that I met actually were Ministers prior to converting. But it is just a fuzzy memory at best.

I'm sure someone can steer you in the right direction.

I'm in Hertford, which is in the northeastern corner of the state.  I'm actually near the NC/VA line.  Thanks for your reply, it's nice to see a neighbor here.   Grin
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« Reply #5 on: April 23, 2008, 11:52:19 PM »


Interesting articles, thank you for sharing them with me.  It's nice to know that I'm not alone in leaving the denomination that ordained me in order to convert to the Church.
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« Reply #6 on: April 23, 2008, 11:54:28 PM »

I would highly recommend reading Becoming Orthodox by Father Peter Gillquist.  He was part of a group of Protestant ministers who all researched church history.  Eventually, they and many in their congregations all became Orthodox together.  I read this book a few years ago... it really goes into the worries, concerns and frustrations they all had... as well as the answersSmiley

Read the customer reviews of the book here:
http://www.amazon.com/review/product/0962271330/ref=dp_top_cm_cr_acr_txt?%5Fencoding=UTF8&showViewpoints=1


You could probably obtain Father Gillquist's contact information from OC.net

God bless you in your journey!  Smiley

Thank you for this information.  I would love to exchange emails with him if he would be willing.  I've placed an order for the book, too.  It sounds like something I will want to read.
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« Reply #7 on: April 24, 2008, 12:18:16 AM »

It's an amazing book....even for a convert kid like me, not being of a Protestant background.

Also you might want to try Coming Home: http://www.amazon.com/Coming-Home-Protestant-Becoming-Orthodox/dp/0962271322/ref=pd_bbs_sr_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1209010313&sr=8-2

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« Reply #8 on: April 24, 2008, 01:19:27 AM »

Dear Seeker,

Fr. Kevin Scherer was a Baptist youth minister before he joined the Orthodox church. He is now in charge of OCF (Orthodox Christian Fellowship), our college ministry program. He is a priest in the Antiochian Archdiocese.

Contact info for OCF is:   http://www.ocf.net/about/contact.html

My priest was a Vineyard youth minister before becoming Orthodox. Another Antiochian Orthodox priest in Washington state (who I am honored to have as a friend and advisor) was also a Baptist minister before joining the Orthodox church. And there are many others. Some of these men brought a number of their parishioners with them in the faith.

sincerely, Tamara
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« Reply #9 on: April 24, 2008, 06:12:09 PM »

Another Antiochian Orthodox priest in Washington state (who I am honored to have as a friend and advisor) was also a Baptist minister before joining the Orthodox church.
Are you in Washington state?  What parish do you attend?  Washington is my home state, and it is where I will be returning to when I get out of the Army later this year.
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« Reply #10 on: April 24, 2008, 07:23:15 PM »

Are you in Washington state?  What parish do you attend?  Washington is my home state, and it is where I will be returning to when I get out of the Army later this year.

No, I am in California but the priest in Washington state is our diocesan spiritual advisor. I have gotten to know him at diocesan events. He is wonderful. Let me know if you want any other info.
+ Thank you for serving our country. God bless you and keep you safe till you are discharged.+

  Smiley Tamara
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« Reply #11 on: April 24, 2008, 09:20:20 PM »

Dear Seeker,

Fr. Kevin Scherer was a Baptist youth minister before he joined the Orthodox church. He is now in charge of OCF (Orthodox Christian Fellowship), our college ministry program. He is a priest in the Antiochian Archdiocese.

Contact info for OCF is:   http://www.ocf.net/about/contact.html

My priest was a Vineyard youth minister before becoming Orthodox. Another Antiochian Orthodox priest in Washington state (who I am honored to have as a friend and advisor) was also a Baptist minister before joining the Orthodox church. And there are many others. Some of these men brought a number of their parishioners with them in the faith.

sincerely, Tamara

I felt silly when I started investigating Church history and felt the desire to leave my denomination for the historic Church.  It's comforting to know that other Protestant clergy have done the same thing that I'm in the process of doing.  Thank you for your post.
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« Reply #12 on: April 24, 2008, 09:21:11 PM »

It's an amazing book....even for a convert kid like me, not being of a Protestant background.

Also you might want to try Coming Home: http://www.amazon.com/Coming-Home-Protestant-Becoming-Orthodox/dp/0962271322/ref=pd_bbs_sr_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1209010313&sr=8-2



Thank you.  I'll be ordering this soon. 
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« Reply #13 on: April 24, 2008, 10:55:56 PM »

Hello Seeker73 God Bless You! I am a former Free Will Baptist Minister. I was just Chrismated on March 30 08. If you would like to talk just send me a PM. I think our stories will be very similar.
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« Reply #14 on: April 27, 2008, 06:49:30 PM »

Free Will Baptist? My favorite heterodox tradition; always wondered if the step to Orthodoxy would be a big one for them. I'm sure you have good advice for Seeker73.
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« Reply #15 on: April 27, 2008, 07:34:18 PM »

My story is very similar to others entering the Church. Mine was a search for absolute Truth. It really can't be found in 100,000+ Denominations. Absolute seems to suggest ONE source, not thousands upon thousands. This was the first step for me.
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« Reply #16 on: April 28, 2008, 02:36:12 AM »

Hello Seeker73 God Bless You! I am a former Free Will Baptist Minister. I was just Chrismated on March 30 08. If you would like to talk just send me a PM. I think our stories will be very similar.

Thank you, I would like a chance to talk to you.  We probably do have some things in common.
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« Reply #17 on: April 28, 2008, 02:42:26 AM »

My story is very similar to others entering the Church. Mine was a search for absolute Truth. It really can't be found in 100,000+ Denominations. Absolute seems to suggest ONE source, not thousands upon thousands. This was the first step for me.

That's exactly what I've searched for.  I searched for several years and thought I found absolute Truth in the Roman Catholic Church, but that was not the case.  After learning about all the doctrines in the RCC that were actually later innovations (as opposed to the Orthodox Church, which has preserved the Faith) I had to leave.  I could not even think of staying.  Although I am disappointed and frustrated to some degree because of all the time I've spent in heterodox churches over the years, I do thank God that I've finally found the True Church that Christ established.  I'm so thankful that the Orthodox Church has preserved the original Christian faith since the time of the Apostles. 
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« Reply #18 on: April 28, 2008, 02:42:56 AM »

Free Will Baptist? My favorite heterodox tradition; always wondered if the step to Orthodoxy would be a big one for them. I'm sure you have good advice for Seeker73.

I was a Church of Christ minister, which does have some things in common with the Free Will Baptists.
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« Reply #19 on: April 28, 2008, 02:44:49 AM »

That's exactly what I've searched for.  I searched for several years and thought I found absolute Truth in the Roman Catholic Church, but that was not the case.  After learning about all the doctrines in the RCC that were actually later innovations (as opposed to the Orthodox Church, which has preserved the Faith) I had to leave.  I could not even think of staying.  Although I am disappointed and frustrated to some degree because of all the time I've spent in heterodox churches over the years, I do thank God that I've finally found the True Church that Christ established.  I'm so thankful that the Orthodox Church has preserved the original Christian faith since the time of the Apostles, and I'm equally thankful that the Orthodox Church made its way to North Carolina!    Smiley 
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« Reply #20 on: April 29, 2008, 12:39:32 AM »

Although I am disappointed and frustrated to some degree because of all the time I've spent in heterodox churches over the years, I do thank God that I've finally found the True Church that Christ established.  I'm so thankful that the Orthodox Church has preserved the original Christian faith since the time of the Apostles. 

Please don't be disappointed or frustrated. Your years spent in Protestant churches were not a waste of time. God has taken you on a journey and He knew when you would be ready to enter the Orthodox Church. Your Protestant years were your preparation time. Be grateful to all of those Christians who helped you become that man you are and who helped you along the way.

sincerely, Tamara
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« Reply #21 on: April 29, 2008, 02:24:20 AM »

Please don't be disappointed or frustrated. Your years spent in Protestant churches were not a waste of time. God has taken you on a journey and He knew when you would be ready to enter the Orthodox Church. Your Protestant years were your preparation time. Be grateful to all of those Christians who helped you become that man you are and who helped you along the way.

sincerely, Tamara
This is a very true saying. Thank you Tamara! I would never had made it to Orthodoxy if it weren't for my years in the FWB Church. Do I regret preaching and teaching heresy? Yes. And I will never stop repenting for that. But it was certainly a time of preparation for me. I know full well the frustration you are feeling. One of the many things that comforted me in my journey into Orthodoxy was the phrase" You are a good God that Lovest Mankind!" I knew that if my heart was humble, and my repentance sincere that God would forgive my past. It can be painful to think of all the time we have lost with Orthodoxy. Just focus on the time you have now, and struggle like you have never struggled before. God Bless You All!
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« Reply #22 on: April 29, 2008, 09:37:13 AM »

The Church needs people just like you, with your experiences and knowledge.  I am sure your background is going to help many seekers and who better to answer questions than someone who lived and preached in that circle. 

Keep your mind focused on an eternity with Christ in his heavenly Kingdom and a few years off the earthly path won't seem so long.  As I get older I sometimes regret that I won't be able to read everything about the Orthodox Church, or travel to all the shrines, monasteries, and holy sites in the world, and how much more I could have done if I hadn't found the Orthodox Church until I was 30.  However, I am still amazed at the tiny little things God did to bring me into the Church. No lightning bolts, no miracles, just coincidences, acquaintances, and timing.  It was in his own time and I don't think I would have understood or accepted the Church if things hadn't played out the way they did. 
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« Reply #23 on: April 29, 2008, 01:31:33 PM »

My father's family is all CoC -- you may want to read a friend of mine's blog -- http://notesfromacommonplacebook.blogspot.com/ -- he's former CoC, if I remember right, and may have some encouragement for you, as well.
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« Reply #24 on: April 29, 2008, 02:23:59 PM »

The timing of your life is most certainly part of a plan. If for no other reason than to give you the ability to help people like me. I really only know Orthodoxy, having been Chrismated at the age of 10. I really, simply do not understand or comprehend the Protestant mind. Not in theology, nor really in outlook on life. But it happens that I am deeply in love with the husband God gave to me, who just happens to be and come from a long line of Methodists. He doesn't understand my world very well. The confusions and misunderstandings that develop are vast, usually petty, and usually simply fixed if someone can explain the little details. Soooo, I depend on well-learned Orthodox who were previous well-learned Protestants to help me find the bridges to connect with my husband. Assuming that you follow through your path to Orthodoxy, and find the answers to ordinary questions, would you be nearly as well able to offer advice to someone in my position, if you hadn't spent so much time as a Protestant Pastor? Trust. Your past has a purpose in the future.
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« Reply #25 on: April 29, 2008, 02:33:46 PM »

I would not lament too much the time in the protestant world, though I know this is difficult. I spent many many years in Falwell's schools and town, as my parents moved us to this coast so my father could be ordained in the seminary there. God chose His time for you to be shown the truth, enlightened if you will. Whatever time you spent elsewhere was preparation, and you will have that much more familiarity for any converts that come your way later. It is difficult for us converts to find understanding in some ways, when we enter an ethnic parish. Granted we were accepted completely, but they cannot fathom what we come from. some of the stuff I was taught for over 30 years leaves my pastor and godparents aghast with shock.
I think you would like Fr. Gilquist's book, it seemed to really resonate with my dh when we converted. I didn't like it as much as he did by a long shot, might be a male/female thing there. I did like Coming Home as well as a few others.  More Spirited than Lions as given me more than an uncomfortable line into my own thinking in regards to feminist thought versus ORthodox doctrine. I had no idea as I never considered myself a feminist...
You aren't too far from me at the VA line either.  Tis nice to see someone else on this side of the country!!

I hope your search for others that converted as pastors is fruitful, I am sure there are many out there.  I would also suggest reading some of Frank Shaeffer's stuff, he minces no words about the likes of Falwell, Graham and others and has a distinct understanding of the protestant world before his conversion. Just read his crazy for God, but I think I had read a couple of other things by him when dh brought them home.
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« Reply #26 on: April 30, 2008, 08:08:08 PM »

Please don't be disappointed or frustrated. Your years spent in Protestant churches were not a waste of time. God has taken you on a journey and He knew when you would be ready to enter the Orthodox Church. Your Protestant years were your preparation time. Be grateful to all of those Christians who helped you become that man you are and who helped you along the way.

sincerely, Tamara

Thank you for your post.  It was encouraging.  Over the past few years, I have felt exactly like that, that my years in evangelical churches were a waste of time.  I don't know what God's purposes were for the circumstances regarding my faith journey, but I must trust Him. 
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« Reply #27 on: April 30, 2008, 08:09:47 PM »

This is a very true saying. Thank you Tamara! I would never had made it to Orthodoxy if it weren't for my years in the FWB Church. Do I regret preaching and teaching heresy? Yes. And I will never stop repenting for that. But it was certainly a time of preparation for me. I know full well the frustration you are feeling. One of the many things that comforted me in my journey into Orthodoxy was the phrase" You are a good God that Lovest Mankind!" I knew that if my heart was humble, and my repentance sincere that God would forgive my past. It can be painful to think of all the time we have lost with Orthodoxy. Just focus on the time you have now, and struggle like you have never struggled before. God Bless You All!

This brings me to a question that's been on my mind for a while.  Did I sin by preaching evangelical Protestant doctrine in the past?  Do I need to repent for it?
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« Reply #28 on: April 30, 2008, 08:13:59 PM »

The Church needs people just like you, with your experiences and knowledge.  I am sure your background is going to help many seekers and who better to answer questions than someone who lived and preached in that circle. 

Keep your mind focused on an eternity with Christ in his heavenly Kingdom and a few years off the earthly path won't seem so long.  As I get older I sometimes regret that I won't be able to read everything about the Orthodox Church, or travel to all the shrines, monasteries, and holy sites in the world, and how much more I could have done if I hadn't found the Orthodox Church until I was 30.  However, I am still amazed at the tiny little things God did to bring me into the Church. No lightning bolts, no miracles, just coincidences, acquaintances, and timing.  It was in his own time and I don't think I would have understood or accepted the Church if things hadn't played out the way they did. 

That is a good point that you make.  Ten years ago, I never would ahve considered the possibility of stepping one foot inside an Orthodox church.  My disillusionment with Protestantism evolved gradually over a period of years, and I spent four years in the Roman Catholic Church before I began to learn about the Orthodox faith.  Even though it is still frustrating at times, I must keep in mind that God knows what He's doing.  Thank you.
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« Reply #29 on: April 30, 2008, 08:16:28 PM »

My father's family is all CoC -- you may want to read a friend of mine's blog -- http://notesfromacommonplacebook.blogspot.com/ -- he's former CoC, if I remember right, and may have some encouragement for you, as well.

This looks intriguing, thank you.  I'll read it later tonight when I have more time.
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« Reply #30 on: April 30, 2008, 08:21:05 PM »

The timing of your life is most certainly part of a plan. If for no other reason than to give you the ability to help people like me. I really only know Orthodoxy, having been Chrismated at the age of 10. I really, simply do not understand or comprehend the Protestant mind. Not in theology, nor really in outlook on life. But it happens that I am deeply in love with the husband God gave to me, who just happens to be and come from a long line of Methodists. He doesn't understand my world very well. The confusions and misunderstandings that develop are vast, usually petty, and usually simply fixed if someone can explain the little details. Soooo, I depend on well-learned Orthodox who were previous well-learned Protestants to help me find the bridges to connect with my husband. Assuming that you follow through your path to Orthodoxy, and find the answers to ordinary questions, would you be nearly as well able to offer advice to someone in my position, if you hadn't spent so much time as a Protestant Pastor? Trust. Your past has a purpose in the future.

You are correct.  Most Protestant divisions and disagreements are petty.  They, of course, view them otherwise.  If anything good came out of my years as an evangelical, I can say that I do understand the Protestant mindset.  If you have any questions. feel free to PM me and I'll do my best to answer them.
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« Reply #31 on: April 30, 2008, 08:25:04 PM »

I would not lament too much the time in the protestant world, though I know this is difficult. I spent many many years in Falwell's schools and town, as my parents moved us to this coast so my father could be ordained in the seminary there. God chose His time for you to be shown the truth, enlightened if you will. Whatever time you spent elsewhere was preparation, and you will have that much more familiarity for any converts that come your way later. It is difficult for us converts to find understanding in some ways, when we enter an ethnic parish. Granted we were accepted completely, but they cannot fathom what we come from. some of the stuff I was taught for over 30 years leaves my pastor and godparents aghast with shock.
I think you would like Fr. Gilquist's book, it seemed to really resonate with my dh when we converted. I didn't like it as much as he did by a long shot, might be a male/female thing there. I did like Coming Home as well as a few others.  More Spirited than Lions as given me more than an uncomfortable line into my own thinking in regards to feminist thought versus ORthodox doctrine. I had no idea as I never considered myself a feminist...
You aren't too far from me at the VA line either.  Tis nice to see someone else on this side of the country!!

I hope your search for others that converted as pastors is fruitful, I am sure there are many out there.  I would also suggest reading some of Frank Shaeffer's stuff, he minces no words about the likes of Falwell, Graham and others and has a distinct understanding of the protestant world before his conversion. Just read his crazy for God, but I think I had read a couple of other things by him when dh brought them home.


I grew up in Falwell's town.  I also have a roommate who is currently enrolled in a distance program at that university.  I know the church and the area well.  I moved to NC as an adult.
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« Reply #32 on: April 30, 2008, 09:54:28 PM »

well whadaya know bout that!?  What is the likelihood?  I am usually the only Falwellville survivor on the forum.  Grin
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« Reply #33 on: April 30, 2008, 09:57:06 PM »

well whadaya know bout that!?  What is the likelihood?  I am usually the only Falwellville survivor on the forum.  Grin

Well, I have to say that I didn't expect to find another one here.  I know "Falwellville" very well.   Smiley
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« Reply #34 on: May 02, 2008, 11:17:01 AM »

Ancient Faith Radio has a podcast called:

The Illumined Heart

which might be of some benefit.

The very week I decided to convert to Orthodoxy after being a Lutheran all of my life they broadcast a show:

From Wittenberg to Antioch
Posted Sunday, September 16, 2007

which can be found on:
http://ancientfaith.com/podcasts/illuminedheart/P32/

This is a talk with a former Lutheran Church Missouri Synod pastor who converted to Orthodoxy and is now a priest.

I was amazed at the timing -- just when I needed it!

It seems to me as if a large number of Lutheran clergy have converted to Antiochian. (Because it is exclusively English in the USA maybe?) You might be able to find something relating to converted clergy in some Antiochian "outreach program."
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« Reply #35 on: May 02, 2008, 05:18:23 PM »

Dear Dave,

There are also a few podcasts from a Lutheran Colloquium given by St. Andrew's House of Orthodox Study archived on Ancient Faith Radio at:

http://ancientfaith.com/specials/lutheran_colloquium

You may find it interesting to listen to the Orthodox clergy, many of whom were former Lutherans.

God Bless you on your journey,

Tamara
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« Reply #36 on: May 02, 2008, 06:13:30 PM »

I was raised Lutheran but I had a pit stop in the Catholic Church before becoming Orthodox.
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« Reply #37 on: May 04, 2008, 03:01:43 AM »

Ancient Faith Radio has a podcast called:

The Illumined Heart

which might be of some benefit.

The very week I decided to convert to Orthodoxy after being a Lutheran all of my life they broadcast a show:

From Wittenberg to Antioch
Posted Sunday, September 16, 2007

which can be found on:
http://ancientfaith.com/podcasts/illuminedheart/P32/

This is a talk with a former Lutheran Church Missouri Synod pastor who converted to Orthodoxy and is now a priest.

I was amazed at the timing -- just when I needed it!

It seems to me as if a large number of Lutheran clergy have converted to Antiochian. (Because it is exclusively English in the USA maybe?) You might be able to find something relating to converted clergy in some Antiochian "outreach program."

Thank you, that was fascinating. 

There aren't any Antiochian parishes where I live, but I'll do a search online for information.
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« Reply #38 on: May 06, 2008, 02:05:56 AM »

It sounds like you have many good resources here, but I did want to say something. My priest converted from Lutheranism, and had been a Lutheran pastor for several years before he and his family converted. When I was an inquirer it was very comforting to me to know that my priest had been in my shoes before. Because of his experiences he was able to better guide me and answer my questions about becoming Orthodox.

And personally I try not to be too hard on my protestant upbringing, even though I sometimes wish I had discovered Orthodoxy earlier. I know that my experiences there taught me to recognize the true church when I saw it. Smiley
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« Reply #39 on: May 06, 2008, 02:11:09 AM »

Howdy!

We Lutherans seem to be infiltrating on all fronts...
OCA
Antiochian
GOA
and who knows where else?
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« Reply #40 on: May 06, 2008, 09:22:39 AM »

Ditto, ex-Lutheran (ELCA).  I think though that I wouldn't have been as open to becoming Orthodox if I hadn't been raised in a liturgical environment like the Lutheran church.  It was exactly my exposure to that kind of worship that reinforced my desire for more traditional and conservative services. 

This goes way back, but I got more interested in my Lutheran faith during college.  Along the way I had a summer romance with a guy that provided me with my one exposure to the world of hard core, country, Holy Ghost pentecostalism.  His parents owned a dairy farm in deep East Texas.  So I go home one weekend to meet his folks.  Nice country people, very country.  The next day we went to church.  And even though I wasn't a very knowledgeable Lutheran, I knew this was so totally out of my league.   When they started speaking in tongues, and hollering and carrying on, I thought I'd landed on some kind of alien world and I was the alien.  All I could think was, Lutherans don't act like this, and church should be reverent and ordered.  Needless to say, that was the one experience that told me this relationship wasn't going anywhere, and it kept me on the path of liturgical churches.
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« Reply #41 on: May 06, 2008, 09:39:03 AM »

well whadaya know bout that!?  What is the likelihood?  I am usually the only Falwellville survivor on the forum.  Grin

I'm another one.  I've been most flavors of Baptist that there is, including Independent Baptist (Falwellville).  Thank goodness we're free from that now.
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« Reply #42 on: May 06, 2008, 11:54:03 AM »

You know I still live in that area and many of the hs groups use that facility for meetings, and of course I still know many people that attend. They think I am in a cult if they happen to find out. But my problem is that I literally get sick to my stomach when we have a meeting up there for some reason. Or they meet up at the nice indoor playground and I have to beg off.  Should I still feel this way after 4 years?  Our priest and one of our kids godparents had never seen the Christmas Tree production and we had free tickets from a family member that still works for the Godparent home.  Fr. and our friends absolutely loved the production, said it was as professional as any they had ever seen. but I cringed the whole time because still KNEW these people and KNEW what they believed.
I must be wierd, but just being around them still upsets my spirit and physical being.
Does anyone else feel this way about what they left behind?  OR did you guys remove yourselves far enough that you don't have to orbit in the same places?
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« Reply #43 on: May 06, 2008, 01:36:47 PM »

I still feel that way too.  I don't even want to experience another altar call.  I still remember trying to explain what an altar call was to my first priest, who is cradle Orthodox.  He is very involved in missions and evangelization, but he didn't have a clue about altar calls.  I was going to visit my brother who is Baptist and the shortest altar call I've seen in his church on Sunday morning is 15 minutes--they can go on much longer.  After I did my poor best trying to explain one to him, he didn't want me going either.  I have to admit, though, that I was never really comfortable with those.

The sad thing about the Independent/Fundamentalism is the legalism.  It can do so much damage.  I feel so sorry for teens who are raised in those homes.  They are not even allowed to listen to Contemporary Christian music (much less rock music), or do the other things that most kids are doing.  I can see why so many totally rebel and go off the deep end.  I was Southern Baptist when I converted to Orthodox, and they are nowhere near as bad.

It made me sick to hear Mr. Falwell say that the terrorist attacks on 9/11 were the result of our sin, talking about the homosexuals and abortionists.   It was mentioned on one of the Orthodox lists that I belong to, and one of the cradle Orthodox priests said that we should look at ourselves to see if we have some of the blame for what happened.  I told him that, unfortunately, I didn't think Mr. Falwell's comments were doing that.  My experience of having been in that movement is that you blame it all on the homosexuals and abortionists (and fill in the blank with any other groups you feel like including) so that you don't have to look at yourself.
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« Reply #44 on: May 06, 2008, 02:20:01 PM »

It sounds like you have many good resources here, but I did want to say something. My priest converted from Lutheranism, and had been a Lutheran pastor for several years before he and his family converted. When I was an inquirer it was very comforting to me to know that my priest had been in my shoes before. Because of his experiences he was able to better guide me and answer my questions about becoming Orthodox.

And personally I try not to be too hard on my protestant upbringing, even though I sometimes wish I had discovered Orthodoxy earlier. I know that my experiences there taught me to recognize the true church when I saw it. Smiley

The lay warden at the mission I've been attending told me that the OCA and the Antiochian church have a high number of priests who are converts.  We don't have a priest yet, but the priest who comes every Wednesday night to teach the inquirer's class used to be an Assembly of God pastor.  (I recently discovered this fact.)  Maybe I can talk to him about his experiences while converting.  I agree, it is a comfort to me to know that this priest is a convert.  I don't feel so alone now.  Even though I haven't spoken to him about it, I'm sure he would understand what I've experienced.
« Last Edit: May 06, 2008, 02:20:38 PM by Seeker73 » Logged
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