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Offline Orthodoc

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The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« on: September 22, 2008, 04:47:16 PM »


Our priest, Fr Victor, included this in the Sunday Church Bulletin.  I think it is well worth the read and should bring in some comments and observations -

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The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow

There is an interesting phenomenon occurring in Orthodox Christianity in America today, and reflected powerfully in our seminaries. Seminaries are loaded almost exclusively with converts, reverts (cradle Orthodox who left the faith, and were re-converted to it again), and the sons and grandsons of clergy.
I believe we are looking at the future of the American Orthodox Church -- today.

The notion that traditionally Orthodox ethnic groups (the group of 'our people' we hear so much about from our primates and hierarchs) are going to populate the ranks of the clergy, and therefore, the Church in the future is, frankly, a pipe dream. Orthodoxy, despite the failings of its leadership, has actually lived up to its own press. The truth of the Orthodox faith, as presented on paper, is actually being believed - by those who have no familial or historical connection with the Orthodox. These poor deluded souls (of which I count myself) actually believe what they are reading about the Orthodox faith, and expect the Church to act like, well, the Church. They refuse to accept the Church as a club of any kind, or closed circle kaffeeklatsch. No old world embassies will be tolerated for much longer - they will go the way of the dodo. No one will have to work against them; they will simply die from atrophy and neglect. The passing away of the Orthodox Church as ethnic club is already taking place. It will come to fruition in a short 10 years, 15 years in larger parishes.

This is a well known problem. Statistical studies taken a mere seven years ago predicted that within 10 years the Orthodox Church in the United States would for all practical purposes, no longer be viable. If nothing was done within five years (that's two years ago) the decline would be irreversible. Demographics determine destiny, as they say. As you may have imagined, not only was "nothing done," such reports were surreptitiously filed away, while the calls for a solution from clergy and laity alike only increased. Larger jurisdictions will, of course, have a little more time, but not a different result.

What we are looking at, of course, is of the highest concern to the hierarchy. They know, in their heart of hearts, that they cannot reverse this trend. Yet they fight a rearguard action, hoping against hope to forestall the historically inevitable movement toward an American Orthodox Church.

The laity has already moved on. Americans, generally, don't fall for very much strong arm intimidation or brow beating, don't go for bullying by insecure leaders, and certainly don't see the value of taking on and promoting someone else's ethnic culture. They care about the Gospel, and the Gospel does not require Slavonic or Koine Greek, or even English for that matter. The Gospel requires context, which is why it cannot be transmitted in any language unknown to the listener.

When we look at our seminaries, we are looking at the Church of Tomorrow, the Church twenty years from now. Indeed, this is the Church we are building today.

Twenty years from now, I anticipate we will see the following:

Vastly diminished parishes, both in size and number. There will be a few exceptions, (and they will be exceptional!) but for the most part, most current Orthodox parishioners will age and die, and have no one to replace them. Why? Because as they have taught the context of their culture, instead teaching the context of their faith. Some parishes will simply be merged with others. Many will close outright. A few will change how they do ministry, with a new vision of parochial ecclesiology. These newer parishes will be lighthouses of genuine Orthodox piety and experience. Some parishes, I believe, will actually be formed specifically, in the old fashion, by purchasing land, building a chapel or Temple in the midst of it, and parishioners building or buying homes around it. The Church will be the center of their lives, and many will come from far and wide to experience their way of life.


Publicly renowned Orthodox media and apologetic ministries. These ministries are the ones providing a living and powerful apologetic for the Orthodox faith in our culture (that is, our 21st Century life in the United States), and actually providing the Gospel in its proper context - engaged in society and the public arena. These will succeed in visibility and public awareness more than all the speeches before the U.N. and odd newspaper stories about Orthodox Easter or Folk Dance Festivals could ever do. In other words, the Orthodox Christian faith will become that most dangerous of all things - relevant to the lives of Americans, and known to all Americans as a genuinely American Christian entity.


More (and younger) bishops. If our current slate of bishops has been mostly a disappointment, reducing their number will only tighten this closed circle, making the hierarchy less and less accessible, and more and more immune to things like, oh, the needs and concerns of their flock. The process of selection for the episcopacy will contain a far more thorough investigation, and men with active homosexual tendencies, psychological problems, insecurities, or addictions will simply not make the cut. We aren't far from open persecution of Christians by secularists in this country, and we need bishops who know the score. With better bishops, no one will be able to 'buy' a priest out of a parish with a gift of cash. Conversely, parish councils will no longer be able to bully priests into staying out of their affairs, and will be required to get out of the restaurant/festival business and get into the soul saving business.


A very different demographic of clergy. Our priests will be composed of converts, reverts, and the sons and grandsons of venerable, long-suffering clergy. These men all know the score. They won't tolerate nonsense like homosexual clergy (especially bishops), women's ordination, or financial corruption. They will not tolerate the Church being regularly and unapologetically dishonored by her own clergy. Twenty years from now, these convert and revert priests will be sending life-long Orthodox men, a new cradle generation, en masse to our seminaries. They will be white, black, Asian, Polynesian, Hispanic, and everything in between. Fewer will be Russian, Greek, or any other traditionally Orthodox background.


Orthodox Biblical Studies. Orthodox Biblical scholarship will flourish, and will actually advance Biblical Studies, rather than tag along for the latest trends, staying a minimum safe distance back in case the latest theory tanks unexpectedly. Septuagint studies are already on the rise and Orthodox scholars will usurp the lead in this arena, establishing a powerful and lasting influence in Biblical Studies for decades to come. Orthodox higher education -- specifically in Biblical Studies in the Orthodox tradition -- will finally have a place at the doctoral level in the Western hemisphere, and it will become a thriving academic entity. The whole Church will feed on the gleanings of this new scholarship and Scriptural knowledge, preaching, and Biblical morality will invigorate the Church for generations.


A much higher moral standard from all clergy. The next twenty years will see a revival of practical ethics. Instead of trailing military or business ethics, the Church will, once again, require the highest standard of ethical and professional behavior from her clergy -- and they will respond! The clergy will not tolerate lying, cheating, or stealing and hold to account those who practice these vices. They will vigorously defend the honor of Christ's priesthood, and Christ's Church. I dare say, even the clergy will finally respect their own priesthood.


Vocations will explode. As a result of the elevated ethical standard publicly expected from the clergy, candidates in far greater numbers will flock to the priesthood. There will be very full classes, distance education, self-study and continuing education going on in every location. Education at a basal level will disappear, except in introductory parish classes. Clergy will powerfully articulate Orthodoxy to the faithful and to the culture around them. Personal opinion will no longer be the standard for clergy when articulating Orthodox ethics and morality. Our seminaries must become beacons for this teaching, and give up "training culture" once and for all. We will finally begin to penetrate our society, rather than go along for the ride like a tick on a dog's back.


Philanthropy will flow like the floodgates of heaven. Finally, the many Orthodox Christian philanthropists who annually give millions of dollars to secular institutions will finally find their own Church completely transparent, completely accountable, and worthy of their faith-building support. Let's face it, there is more than enough money in Orthodoxy right now to build hospitals, clinics, schools, colleges, universities, and a new Hagia Sophia right here in the United States. The reason this is not being done is because these philanthropists are intelligent men and women who do not trust the hierarchy to do the right thing with their millions. This will change in short order once it is shown that transparency doesn't destroy the Church, but strengthens it immeasurably. Frankly, I don't anticipate every jurisdiction to do this in the next twenty years, but those that are practicing transparency will emerge as the leaders in every arena of Church existence.
Hope

This all may seem unlikely today, but it is coming.

How do I know this? For one thing, the last holdouts of corruption, Byzantine intrigue and phyletism (a fancy theological term for ethnic preference) are clinging desperately to a vision of the Church that is, quite frankly, dying fast. Oh, they are doing everything to shore up their power and influence, and busy serving their own needs, but their vision is dying. And where there is no vision, the people perish (Proverbs 29:18).

As frightening and disconcerting as it may seem to our leaders, they will learn that emerging from a cocoon, even a Byzantine cocoon, is not a bad thing. Orthodoxy is about to take flight on new beautiful wings. These are the birth pangs of a new era for Orthodoxy. God is giving us a time of freedom and light.

This new Orthodox Church will have a different face, will be ready for contemporary challenges, and will have begun to penetrate American society at every stage and on every level. This Church is the one that will be ready for the challenges of open persecution, fighting for the soul of every American, regardless of their genetic affiliation. This Church will be the one our grandchildren and great grandchildren will grow up in, looking back on the late 20th-early 21st century as a time of sentimental darkness from which burst forth the light of the Gospel. Let it begin.

Fr. John A. Peck is pastor of Prescott Orthodox Church in Prescott, Ariz.

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Orthodoc
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Offline Tallitot

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #1 on: September 22, 2008, 05:00:30 PM »
I'm just curious...I've never seen an Orthodox Church not named in honor of a saint or doctrine of the church. Why did they chose the name?
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Offline Orthodoc

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #2 on: September 22, 2008, 05:16:13 PM »
I'm just curious...I've never seen an Orthodox Church not named in honor of a saint or doctrine of the church. Why did they chose the name?


That's an excellent question.  Their website states they are within the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese.  In the parish directory of the GOC it is also listed as the Prescott Orthodox Church.  Could it be that it's a mission parish at this time?  Perhaps someone from the GOC can explain.

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Offline Anastasios

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #3 on: September 22, 2008, 05:17:58 PM »
"The whole Church will feed on the gleanings of this new scholarship and Scriptural knowledge, preaching, and Biblical morality will invigorate the Church for generations."

Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

It's hard to take people seriously when they say things like this.

And Orthodox converts have been in seminaries for decades. They've been more than half of the membership for a long time.  Converts are not immune to their problems, and I think this article insults the many good Orthodox priests who are cradles.
« Last Edit: September 22, 2008, 05:19:26 PM by Fr. Anastasios »
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Offline SolEX01

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #4 on: September 22, 2008, 05:51:09 PM »
There is also the Greek Orthodox Parish of Loudoun County, VA.  The community has yet to decide on what to name themselves and the Church is not listed in the GOA Parish directory for whatever reasons.

Sts. Mary Magdalene and Markella Greek Orthodox Church has existed for 4 years in Harford County, MD and has not been listed in the GOA Parish directory for whatever reasons.

The Prescott Church website is very scant on its history, which leads me to suspect that they could be a Mission Church from St. Anthony's Monastery.  Because St. Anthony's Monastery/Church is a canonical GOA Church, any Mission from said GOA Church is also canonical; hence, quick inclusion in GOA directories and the like.  Given the controversy and legal issues pertaining to clergy associated with St. Anthony's, a low profile helps minimize the risk of people asking too many questions.

Offline SolEX01

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #5 on: September 22, 2008, 05:54:22 PM »
"The whole Church will feed on the gleanings of this new scholarship and Scriptural knowledge, preaching, and Biblical morality will invigorate the Church for generations."

Does not sound like canonical Orthodox teaching to me.  Whatever that is supposed to be, I just want to run as far away from it as possible.

With all due respect, I know more about Father A.'s Jurisdiction than I know about the entities associated with the Elder Ephraim from Athos and His Spiritual Descendents.

Offline Alveus Lacuna

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #6 on: September 22, 2008, 07:09:16 PM »
I honestly do not understand this sort of thing at all.  There is obviously a total disrespect for the authorities of the church in place.  What does not make sense to me is why a person would want to join the Orthodox Church if they just want to revolutionize everything? 

Is not Orthodoxy about preservation of the faith as it has been handed down to us?  Is not Orthodoxy about the authority of the Bishops and priests as given to them through the authority of the apostles?

As a non-Orthodox person myself who is strongly considering joining the church, this sort of horse crap is not going to get me to sign up.  Because the Orthodoxy I read about in books wasn't full of smarmy revolutionaries who know better than those in authority above them and the Fathers of the Church in the past.

A great measure of appeal for me in joining the One True Church is just that; the ability to believe that the faith is wholly in tact and preserved.  That nothing has prevailed against the Church.  The Protestant world is full of self-important egoists.  Protestantism is all about making your own claims, and deciding what is true for yourself in every instance.  So armed alone with our Bibles, we Protestants are forced to construct our own faith-realities.  This is the thing that is leading me home to the true Church.

The protestant paradigm has to construct the faith for each individual, and through one's personal interpretation form God in one's own image.  In this reality we worship ourselves alone.  We are God.  But in the Orthodox faith, you are not alone in your battle for truth.  Truth is revealed by Christ and preserved by his apostles and their successive authorities.  I can let go of the battle to "decide" on what is right and wrong.  I can turn to the Ancient Church and they will reveal to me the collective wisdom of millennia gone past.

So for these people, I'm not certain why they are involved if they think everything needs to be "statistically viable."  Why are they the enlightened ones who can save the dying faith?  The Ancient church cannot compromise herself.  America doesn't know about her, so he has not had the opportunity to rape her of all that is pure and good.  I say this because I know there are those who will want to come in and "renovate" everything.  Away with the icons and up with the big screens.  Why aren't their acoustic guitars with the choir?  Don't they want to be relevant?

Sorry, that was kind of a tangent, but it was just the way the whole thing made me react.  I am open to reproach and repentance on my behalf if I have appear arrogant or ignorant.
« Last Edit: September 22, 2008, 09:47:15 PM by Alveus Lacuna »

Offline SolEX01

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #7 on: September 22, 2008, 07:21:42 PM »
I honestly do not understand this sort of thing at all.  There is obviously a total disrespect for the authorities of the church in place.  What does not make sense to me is why a person would want to join the Orthodox Church if they just want to revolutionize everything?

Greedy and ambitious people are looking for new realms to conquer.  The Orthodox Church is the final realm because Satan knows that nothing can bring down the Orthodox Church as long as Christ is supporting the Church.  Remove Christ from the Church and Satan is emboldened with his task.
 
Is not Orthodoxy about preservation of the faith as it has been handed down to us?  Is not Orthodoxy about the authority of the Bishops and priests as given to them through the authority of the apostles?

Yes to both.  The laity also has a responsibility to ensure that the Hierarchy is maintaining the authority of the Apostles.

As a non-Orthodox person myself who is strongly considering joining the church, the sort of horse crap is not going to get me to sign up.  Because the Orthodoxy I read about in books wasn't full of smarmy revolutionaries who know better than those in authority above them and the Fathers of the Church in the past.

Goes back to what I said about Satan operating against the Orthodox Church.  Satan wants to turn people away from Christ.

A great measure of appeal for me in joining the One True Church is just that; the ability to believe that the faith is wholly in tact and preserved.  That nothing has prevailed against the Church.  The Protestant world is full of self-important egoists.  Protestantism is all about making your own claims, and deciding what is true for yourself in every instance.  So armed alone with our Bibles, we Protestants are forced to construct our own faith-realities.  This is the thing that is leading me home to the true Church.

I don't see anything which warrants changing the above view.

We do not have to construct the faith for ourselves, and through our personal interpretations form God in our own images.  In this reality we worship ourselves alone.  We are God.  But in the Orthodox faith, you are not alone in your battle for truth.  Truth is revealed by Christ and preserved by his apostles and their successive authorities.  I can let go of the battle to "decide" on what is right and wrong.  I can turn to the Ancient Church and they will reveal to me the collective wisdom of millennia gone past.

Stick to it - sounds like you know what you are practicing.  The Priests and Hierarchs are not perfect; they never were and they never will.

So for these people, I'm not certain why they are involved if they think everything needs to be "statistically viable."  Why are they the enlightened ones who can save the dying faith?  The Ancient church cannot compromise herself.  America doesn't know about her, so he has not had the opportunity to rape her of all that is pure and good.  I say this because I know there are those who will want to come in and "renovate" everything.  Away with the icons and up with the big screens.  Why aren't their acoustic guitars with the choir?  Don't they want to be relevant?

Sorry, that was kind of a tangent, but it was just the way the whole thing made me react.  I am open to reproach and repentance on my behalf if I have appear arrogant or ignorant.

You made some very good points.  I hope you continue on your path to the one true Faith.   ;D

Offline Alveus Lacuna

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #8 on: September 22, 2008, 09:45:20 PM »
The laity also has a responsibility to ensure that the Hierarchy is maintaining the authority of the Apostles.

I was just wondering if you could clarify what you meant by this statement.  Did you mean that the laity are responsible in the sense that they have to keep corrupt leadership accountable, or that they have to be respectful and reverent of the authorities so that they have some "authority" to claim to the world?  If this is the case then I would guess you mean that if none of the laity respect their superiors, then the church is dead and the authority of the apostles is lost.  I had not considered that angle, but I would totally agree.

Offline SolEX01

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #9 on: September 23, 2008, 01:09:38 AM »
The laity also has a responsibility to ensure that the Hierarchy is maintaining the authority of the Apostles.

I was just wondering if you could clarify what you meant by this statement. 

In the Orthodox Church, the Clergy and Laity are equal since Ordained Clergy used to be laity (just as the 12 Apostles had different careers/vocations).  Because of the Apostolic Succession of the Orthodox Church, any Clergyman can trace his ordination back to any of the 12 Apostles.  If the laity are voting with their feet by not attending Church, they are failing in their role as co-celebrants of the Liturgy with clergy.  However, there are Orthodox laity who perform the work of Christ without setting foot in an Orthodox Church.  If a Clergyman errs, someone has to point out the error and find ways to rectify error.

Did you mean that the laity are responsible in the sense that they have to keep corrupt leadership accountable,

The term "corrupt leadership" is somewhat misleading when applied to Orthodoxy.  There are lay people serving on Councils who govern the day to day operations of an Archdiocese, a Metropolitanate, etc.  The Hierarch is not CEO of His see nor is a priest CEO of a Church.  A Parish Council cannot remove a Priest - only the Synod can reassign Clergy.  If a Priest decides to take matters into his own hands, only the Hierarch, by way of Communication from the laity, can deal with an errant Priest.  Using the context I just described, the laity is responsible for ensuring proper Orthodox praxis with the decision vested in the Hierarchs via Synod.

or that they have to be respectful and reverent of the authorities so that they have some "authority" to claim to the world?

There's a saying that anything in darkness sees the light of Truth.  The only authority comes from God.  There are many examples in the OT where the Jewish kings took their own authority and defied God - each of them received their just punishment for apostasy including Kings David and Solomon who were the only 2 to repent of those who were unrighteous. 

If this is the case then I would guess you mean that if none of the laity respect their superiors, then the church is dead and the authority of the apostles is lost.  I had not considered that angle, but I would totally agree.

I never said the statements in bold.  The Orthodox Church will prevail against Satan and will never reach the state described in bold.

Offline PeterTheAleut

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #10 on: September 23, 2008, 01:21:04 AM »
There's a saying that anything in darkness sees the light of Truth.  The only authority comes from God.  There are many examples in the OT where the Jewish kings took their own authority and defied God - each of them received their just punishment for apostasy including Kings David and Solomon who were the only 2 to repent of those who were unrighteous. 
You sure you're not talking about King Manasseh rather than King Solomon?  2 Chronicles 33:10-17 details how King Manasseh repented of his sins of idolatry, and this repentance produced what we know as the Prayer of Manasseh (found in the OSB immediately after 2 Chronicles and prayed by Orthodox Christians during the service of Great Compline).
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Offline SolEX01

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #11 on: September 23, 2008, 01:27:03 AM »
^ OK, Make it 3 Kings of Israel who repented from apostasy.   Thank You! ;)  Manasseh's son, Amon, went back to his father's wicked ways and then some.

Holy Tradition has King Solomon repenting in Hades which was why I went from 2 to 3; Hence, King Solomon's depiction in one of the Resurrection icons.  I've seen King Josiah used as the reference to the second Israelite King except that King Solomon built the Temple whose curtain was torn in half at the Crucifixion.
« Last Edit: September 23, 2008, 01:30:26 AM by SolEX01 »

Offline serb1389

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #12 on: September 23, 2008, 08:49:17 AM »
My first question to this priest would be:  What seminaries are you TALKING ABOUT!  If he is talking about Holy Cross (which is the seminary of his jurisdiction) I would have to say:  WRONG!  I would say MAYBE around a third of the SEMINARIANS are strictly converts.  As for the other MAJOR seminaries (ie Vlads and Tikhons) he might have a case, but even there I would argue that there are many more parents who converted to orthodoxy and now sent their kids to seminaries, thereby making them CRADLE orthodox, not convert (in a strict sense).  Holy Trinity is of course almost all Russians FROM Russia.

Also, I am not sure if he knows that there are actually 14 orthodox seminaries, including schools under the OO churches, which would mean that he would need to make a study of all of the OTHER seminaries (beyond the big 3/4).  I can tell you right now, offhand I know of 5 other seminaries which are almost COMPLETELY cradle, FROM the country which they are associated with.  His entire premise is based on a surmising, sweeping, unfounded perception. 

Offline Anastasios

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #13 on: September 23, 2008, 09:34:34 AM »
My first question to this priest would be:  What seminaries are you TALKING ABOUT!  If he is talking about Holy Cross (which is the seminary of his jurisdiction) I would have to say:  WRONG!  I would say MAYBE around a third of the SEMINARIANS are strictly converts.  As for the other MAJOR seminaries (ie Vlads and Tikhons) he might have a case, but even there I would argue that there are many more parents who converted to orthodoxy and now sent their kids to seminaries, thereby making them CRADLE orthodox, not convert (in a strict sense).  Holy Trinity is of course almost all Russians FROM Russia.

Also, I am not sure if he knows that there are actually 14 orthodox seminaries, including schools under the OO churches, which would mean that he would need to make a study of all of the OTHER seminaries (beyond the big 3/4).  I can tell you right now, offhand I know of 5 other seminaries which are almost COMPLETELY cradle, FROM the country which they are associated with.  His entire premise is based on a surmising, sweeping, unfounded perception. 

But you know it's easier to make grand claims and paint big strokes...
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Offline Amdetsion

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #14 on: September 23, 2008, 11:24:03 AM »
Orthodoc

Thanks for posting this article.

It is quite shocking to read. I had to read some things a few times to make sure I was understanding what he was saying.

I have not drawn any conclusions yet and do not want to 'react' to 'this-point' or 'that-point' as so many others have done so far. Its easy to rip apart or "throw rocks" at a word or phrase.

Also as this is a "cold-slap in the face" to many cradle OC's this subject certainly is quite scarey and as I have noticed many have reacted in this fear already so far. This to me helps to justify the point that is being proposed. I see alot of posts of a defensive nature.

Of course we do not need to defend what is not offended!

So defense is proof that the offense is real and that is exactly what the article seems to be proposing.

I think the article is well intentioned and speaks to us very honestly if not truthfully.

It is one of the most important posts I have read since I started following Orthodox Church Forums on line. I am not saying that I agree with all he is saying but that what he is 'proposing' is massive and vital....well worth exploring.

I work exclusively with converts in the Ethiopian Orthodox Church. I have a lot in common with what the article is saying. I was shocked at how exact he is on key points. I mean right on point.

After I have had a chance to ponder his idea and get the full picture of his point I will probably post a more decisive opinion about this issue.

Again Thanks.
« Last Edit: September 23, 2008, 11:34:47 AM by Amdetsion »
"ETHIOPIA shall soon stretch out her hands unto God".....Psalm 68:vs 31

"Are ye not as children of the ETHIOPIANS unto me, O children of Israel"?....Amos 9: vs 7

Offline SolEX01

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #15 on: September 23, 2008, 12:23:41 PM »
Forgive me for the length of this post except that I saw one passage from the sermon cited by the OP which raised the red flags....

Quote
How do I know this? For one thing, the last holdouts of corruption, Byzantine intrigue and phyletism (a fancy theological term for ethnic preference) are clinging desperately to a vision of the Church that is, quite frankly, dying fast. Oh, they are doing everything to shore up their power and influence, and busy serving their own needs, but their vision is dying. And where there is no vision, the people perish (Proverbs 29:18).

Proverbs 29:18 in KJV differs greatly from Proverbs 29:18 found in the Orthodox Study Bible.  The Priest in the above Sermon cited the KJV.  The Orthodox Study Bible has the passage as follows:

There shall be no interpreter of the law for a lawless nation, But he who guards the law is very blessed.

The KJV has Proverbs 29:18 as:

18Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.

No consistent translation of Proverbs 29:18.  Did this Priest find a passage to create doubt or perhaps did he cite from somewhere else and misattributed the quoting to Proverbs 29:18?

The Greek Septuagint, quoting Proverbs 30:18, has the passage as:

18 ου μη υπαρξη εξηγητης εθνει παρανομω ο δε φυλασσων τον νομον μακαριστος

παρανομω = lawless
εθνει = nations
μακαριστος = blessed

Where the above passage, translated to English, is consistent with the one found in the Orthodox Study Bible.

For someone who would say the following:

Quote
The laity has already moved on. Americans, generally, don't fall for very much strong arm intimidation or brow beating, don't go for bullying by insecure leaders, and certainly don't see the value of taking on and promoting someone else's ethnic culture. They care about the Gospel, and the Gospel does not require Slavonic or Koine Greek, or even English for that matter. The Gospel requires context, which is why it cannot be transmitted in any language unknown to the listener.

shows a lack of respect for language and knowledge.  I would ask Met. Gerasimos how He feels about the Gospel requiring context without any understanding of language.

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #16 on: September 23, 2008, 12:38:39 PM »

I know Fr. John personally so perhaps I am being a little sensitive, but do you not think that you are casting your own aspersions on Fr. John's intentions by saying the following:

Quote
Did this Priest find a passage to create doubt or perhaps did he cite from somewhere else and misattributed the quoting to Proverbs 29:18?

Perhaps Fr. John is fond of the KJV and therefore used that as a source for his quote?  He's certainly not the only native Anglophone Orthodox priest to use the KJV. 

Quote
For someone who would say the following:

Quote
The laity has already moved on. Americans, generally, don't fall for very much strong arm intimidation or brow beating, don't go for bullying by insecure leaders, and certainly don't see the value of taking on and promoting someone else's ethnic culture. They care about the Gospel, and the Gospel does not require Slavonic or Koine Greek, or even English for that matter. The Gospel requires context, which is why it cannot be transmitted in any language unknown to the listener.

shows a lack of respect for language and knowledge.  I would ask Met. Gerasimos how He feels about the Gospel requiring context without any understanding of language.

I believe you are missing Fr. John's point.  The Gospel is something that is lived and experienced.  No language, not even Koine Greek, can take the place of an experiential Gospel.  Language is a tool to help people understand the Gospel, but ultimately theosis is achieved through living the Gospel, not just talking/writing about it.
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #17 on: September 23, 2008, 12:58:52 PM »
I know Fr. John personally so perhaps I am being a little sensitive, but do you not think that you are casting your own aspersions on Fr. John's intentions by saying the following:

Quote
Did this Priest find a passage to create doubt or perhaps did he cite from somewhere else and misattributed the quoting to Proverbs 29:18?

I know that some of the Chapters in Proverbs were rearranged by various translators.  While I found the accurate passage for Proverbs 29:18 in the Orthodox Study Bible, that passage didn't bear any resemblance to the passage quoted from the KJV.  Father John basically said in his sermon that Orthodoxy in America, as we know it, lacks vision and will die off and only His proposal can save Orthodoxy from its "fate."

Perhaps Fr. John is fond of the KJV and therefore used that as a source for his quote?  He's certainly not the only native Anglophone Orthodox priest to use the KJV.
 

I like the KJV as well except that if I see a passage which says that those without vision will perish while other translations neither mention visions nor death, I have a huge question mark.

Quote
shows a lack of respect for language and knowledge.  I would ask Met. Gerasimos how He feels about the Gospel requiring context without any understanding of language.

I believe you are missing Fr. John's point.  The Gospel is something that is lived and experienced.  No language, not even Koine Greek, can take the place of an experiential Gospel.  Language is a tool to help people understand the Gospel, but ultimately theosis is achieved through living the Gospel, not just talking/writing about it.

Why is it necessary to keep mentioning Koine Greek?  What did they speak during Christ's time?  What conqueror left that language behind?

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #18 on: September 23, 2008, 01:24:58 PM »
If he is talking about Holy Cross (which is the seminary of his jurisdiction) I would have to say:  WRONG!  I would say MAYBE around a third of the SEMINARIANS are strictly converts. 

I think in my incoming class we had over 1/3 (I think it was close to 1/2); in the classes I saw graduate while a student (2004, 05, and 06) the number was over 1/3.  Heck, I think the school even admits that nearly 1/2 of the students admitted to the SOT became Orthodox later in life (i.e. after childhood).
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #19 on: September 23, 2008, 01:33:41 PM »
I know that some of the Chapters in Proverbs were rearranged by various translators.  While I found the accurate passage for Proverbs 29:18 in the Orthodox Study Bible, that passage didn't bear any resemblance to the passage quoted from the KJV.  Father John basically said in his sermon that Orthodoxy in America, as we know it, lacks vision and will die off and only His proposal can save Orthodoxy from its "fate."

I really fail to see how Fr. John puts for this observations on how he sees things heading as the "only proposal".  He is merely commenting on trends that he has observed.  By all means, disagree with his observations.  I just think you're reading into Fr. John's intentions.

Quote
Why is it necessary to keep mentioning Koine Greek?  What did they speak during Christ's time?  What conqueror left that language behind?

It gets mentioned because of the oft-heard exhortation to "go back to the Greek" when discussing the meaning of the written Gospel.  Fr. John's point, once again, is that the Gospel transcends language, but it is very easy, and very human, to go back to the old "This translation is faulty" canard.
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #20 on: September 23, 2008, 02:24:50 PM »
I thought the subject (and this thread) was about the very moving article Fr. John wrote?

Any thoughts?

I am very interested in what we all have to say about what he is 'intending' to put across.

We should not try to avoid the point by barking (maybe even semantically) about his choice of words and scripture and how many people 'we' see at seminary and so on.

I think regardless (although the points being made are valid indeed and have some part how we view the point at hand)..never-the-less the subject of his article is clear.
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #21 on: September 23, 2008, 04:16:48 PM »
I really fail to see how Fr. John puts for this observations on how he sees things heading as the "only proposal".  He is merely commenting on trends that he has observed.  By all means, disagree with his observations.  I just think you're reading into Fr. John's intentions.

I don't believe I'm reading anything more into what was said.

It gets mentioned because of the oft-heard exhortation to "go back to the Greek" when discussing the meaning of the written Gospel.  Fr. John's point, once again, is that the Gospel transcends language, but it is very easy, and very human, to go back to the old "This translation is faulty" canard.

So, when Christ said not to add or subtract one iota from the Gospel, I guess He wasn't thinking about language translation issues?

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #22 on: September 23, 2008, 04:24:00 PM »
I thought the subject (and this thread) was about the very moving article Fr. John wrote?

Any thoughts?

I am very interested in what we all have to say about what he is 'intending' to put across.

I don't agree with much of what he was saying.

Quote
We should not try to avoid the point by barking (maybe even semantically) about his choice of words and scripture and how many people 'we' see at seminary and so on.

No, we should not avoid that! That was one of his points, and it was wrong!

Quote
I think regardless (although the points being made are valid indeed and have some part how we view the point at hand)..never-the-less the subject of his article is clear.

Yes, and the author is wrong.
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #23 on: September 23, 2008, 10:20:55 PM »
If he is talking about Holy Cross (which is the seminary of his jurisdiction) I would have to say:  WRONG!  I would say MAYBE around a third of the SEMINARIANS are strictly converts. 

I think in my incoming class we had over 1/3 (I think it was close to 1/2); in the classes I saw graduate while a student (2004, 05, and 06) the number was over 1/3.  Heck, I think the school even admits that nearly 1/2 of the students admitted to the SOT became Orthodox later in life (i.e. after childhood).

I am willing to grant you this point, because I never really got into the nitty gritty of what exact background people were.  HOWEVER, I would wager that most of the people you are refering to were born into orthodox parents, who probably converted.  I got that sense more than anything. 

IN general though, my statement still stands.  He is making an assumption based on a refutable claim.  If he wants to talk about trends in his parish or community, perhaps even his metropolis, then maybe his claims would have more credance.  However, when was the last time he was AT a seminary, much less did any kind of stat work?  I just think it's unfounded. 

My first question to this priest would be:  What seminaries are you TALKING ABOUT!  If he is talking about Holy Cross (which is the seminary of his jurisdiction) I would have to say:  WRONG!  I would say MAYBE around a third of the SEMINARIANS are strictly converts.  As for the other MAJOR seminaries (ie Vlads and Tikhons) he might have a case, but even there I would argue that there are many more parents who converted to orthodoxy and now sent their kids to seminaries, thereby making them CRADLE orthodox, not convert (in a strict sense).  Holy Trinity is of course almost all Russians FROM Russia.

Also, I am not sure if he knows that there are actually 14 orthodox seminaries, including schools under the OO churches, which would mean that he would need to make a study of all of the OTHER seminaries (beyond the big 3/4).  I can tell you right now, offhand I know of 5 other seminaries which are almost COMPLETELY cradle, FROM the country which they are associated with.  His entire premise is based on a surmising, sweeping, unfounded perception. 

But you know it's easier to make grand claims and paint big strokes...

Was this a little banter at the way I was talking, or were you just adding fuel to my fire?  I have no problem admitting i'm wrong or a hypocrite, just trying to keep myself in check Padre.  lol.  Seriously though, i'd love an answer.  Always was a big fan of public admonition (seriously).  Thanks! 

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #24 on: September 23, 2008, 10:32:13 PM »
I thought the subject (and this thread) was about the very moving article Fr. John wrote?

Any thoughts?

I am very interested in what we all have to say about what he is 'intending' to put across.

We should not try to avoid the point by barking (maybe even semantically) about his choice of words and scripture and how many people 'we' see at seminary and so on.

I think regardless (although the points being made are valid indeed and have some part how we view the point at hand)..never-the-less the subject of his article is clear.

That's just it.  In my opinion, what he is INTENDING to put accross is that all pro-Greek, anti-english, non-progressive, non-liberal seminarians/theologians/people are not progressive enough, or "with the program" or "with the gospel" or whatever you might want to call it, and therefore not really Orthodox Christians, and therefore are making huge mistakes in every aspect of life, and need to come to the light and be enlightened by the new and best way of understanding everything. 

ABSOLUTELY I am being ridiculous i that statement (above), yet at the same time I would say that this is how I felt reading his sermon.  I felt like there was no way out for cradle orthodox except to accept his theology and his gospel, and that's it.  It left no room for dialogue nor hope, nor a way out.  It felt like "change or be changed" which I do NOT believe is orthodox. 

I also felt like he was saying:  when are we finally going to change as a church to the real understanding of church.  And I would say, how do YOU know what the real understanding of church is?  However, I follow that statement IMMEDIATELY up with the fact that we have discussed this topic AD NAUSIUM, so I hope that the discussion does not disintegrate to that. 

Anyway, I believe that the subject of the article is NOT clear, and that he is hiding behind big wording and circular reasoning, in order to convolute how he actually feels.  (again being a little blatant).   We are barking at his words because his premiss is based on these words.  they are not just nit-picking or semantics.  He says that seminaries are teaching in a phyletist manner to non-cradle students.  This begs OBVIOUS questions like:  which seminaries, how do you know, who are you talking about, and CAN YOU JUST MAKE A STATEMENT LIKE THAT WITHOUT VALIDATING IT?  I submit that he cannot.  However, if you want to talk about his INTENT, I have laid out some thoughts in my opening remarks.  I hope you DO take them seriously on the level that:  you never know, he might actually be THINKING these things, and how do I know that he is not?  (beyond calling him and asking...which you never know, might be a good idea). 

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #25 on: September 23, 2008, 11:21:23 PM »


Was this a little banter at the way I was talking, or were you just adding fuel to my fire?  I have no problem admitting i'm wrong or a hypocrite, just trying to keep myself in check Padre.  lol.  Seriously though, i'd love an answer.  Always was a big fan of public admonition (seriously).  Thanks! 


I was agreeing with you and saying that it's easier for the author to make up generalizations than to actually do what you did and lay out some stats ;)
« Last Edit: September 23, 2008, 11:22:43 PM by Fr. Anastasios »
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #26 on: September 25, 2008, 03:26:09 PM »


Was this a little banter at the way I was talking, or were you just adding fuel to my fire?  I have no problem admitting i'm wrong or a hypocrite, just trying to keep myself in check Padre.  lol.  Seriously though, i'd love an answer.  Always was a big fan of public admonition (seriously).  Thanks! 


I was agreeing with you and saying that it's easier for the author to make up generalizations than to actually do what you did and lay out some stats ;)

::whew::  Thanks for that. Sorry about waylaying the discussion. 

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #27 on: September 25, 2008, 07:05:20 PM »
If he is talking about Holy Cross (which is the seminary of his jurisdiction) I would have to say:  WRONG!  I would say MAYBE around a third of the SEMINARIANS are strictly converts. 

I think in my incoming class we had over 1/3 (I think it was close to 1/2); in the classes I saw graduate while a student (2004, 05, and 06) the number was over 1/3.  Heck, I think the school even admits that nearly 1/2 of the students admitted to the SOT became Orthodox later in life (i.e. after childhood).

Being one of those 'converts' in the classes being discussed, I can vouch that well over a third of the incoming seminarians were converts.

And it is unknown the proportion of those who were 'stealth converts'---people like myself who were converts but very often even 'cradles' thought I belonged with them, and were surprised when they found out I actually was not Greek.

But, my thoughts on the article is that Fr John contradicts himself repeatedly...I mean, why will there be 'less and smaller' parishes, but more and younger bishops along with an explosion of vocations? he needs to argue more persuasively for these conclusions.
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #28 on: September 25, 2008, 08:52:38 PM »
If he is talking about Holy Cross (which is the seminary of his jurisdiction) I would have to say:  WRONG!  I would say MAYBE around a third of the SEMINARIANS are strictly converts. 

I think in my incoming class we had over 1/3 (I think it was close to 1/2); in the classes I saw graduate while a student (2004, 05, and 06) the number was over 1/3.  Heck, I think the school even admits that nearly 1/2 of the students admitted to the SOT became Orthodox later in life (i.e. after childhood).

Being one of those 'converts' in the classes being discussed, I can vouch that well over a third of the incoming seminarians were converts.

And it is unknown the proportion of those who were 'stealth converts'---people like myself who were converts but very often even 'cradles' thought I belonged with them, and were surprised when they found out I actually was not Greek.

But, my thoughts on the article is that Fr John contradicts himself repeatedly...I mean, why will there be 'less and smaller' parishes, but more and younger bishops along with an explosion of vocations? he needs to argue more persuasively for these conclusions.

I'm willing to settle.  Plus, I got overruled anyway..lol.   ;D

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #29 on: September 25, 2008, 10:14:52 PM »
Does anyone have any idea why Fr. John Peck's article has been removed at his request from the  originating website and all the other sites that had linked it?  I just tried doing a search and it's gone.  That article, whether you agree with it or not, was the hottest thing to hit American Orthodoxy in a good long while.  I can't understand why it has been taken out of the public sphere.
« Last Edit: September 25, 2008, 10:15:47 PM by TinaG »
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #30 on: September 25, 2008, 10:36:52 PM »
Does anyone have any idea why Fr. John Peck's article has been removed at his request from the  originating website and all the other sites that had linked it?  I just tried doing a search and it's gone.  That article, whether you agree with it or not, was the hottest thing to hit American Orthodoxy in a good long while.  I can't understand why it has been taken out of the public sphere.

Maybe his bishop was offended.
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #31 on: September 26, 2008, 05:03:51 AM »
I'm just curious...I've never seen an Orthodox Church not named in honor of a saint or doctrine of the church. Why did they chose the name?


That's an excellent question.  Their website states they are within the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese.  In the parish directory of the GOC it is also listed as the Prescott Orthodox Church.  Could it be that it's a mission parish at this time?  Perhaps someone from the GOC can explain.

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Well, their website does say the "Mile High Mission"  :)
And the photo gallery looks like a mission parish too.
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #32 on: September 26, 2008, 09:23:42 AM »
I'm just curious...I've never seen an Orthodox Church not named in honor of a saint or doctrine of the church. Why did they chose the name?


That's an excellent question.  Their website states they are within the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese.  In the parish directory of the GOC it is also listed as the Prescott Orthodox Church.  Could it be that it's a mission parish at this time?  Perhaps someone from the GOC can explain.

Orthodoc
Well, their website does say the "Mile High Mission"  :)
And the photo gallery looks like a mission parish too.

What does them having a mission parish have to do with ANYTHING?!?!?

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #33 on: September 26, 2008, 01:03:59 PM »
I'm just curious...I've never seen an Orthodox Church not named in honor of a saint or doctrine of the church. Why did they chose the name?


That's an excellent question.  Their website states they are within the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese.  In the parish directory of the GOC it is also listed as the Prescott Orthodox Church.  Could it be that it's a mission parish at this time?  Perhaps someone from the GOC can explain.

Orthodoc
Well, their website does say the "Mile High Mission"  :)
And the photo gallery looks like a mission parish too.

What does them having a mission parish have to do with ANYTHING?!?!?

Ask person I was replying to...the side question was on odd name. Testy, aren't you?
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #34 on: September 26, 2008, 01:26:22 PM »
Well, their website does say the "Mile High Mission"  :)
And the photo gallery looks like a mission parish too.

What does them having a mission parish have to do with ANYTHING?!?!?

I've heard of more than a couple of Orthodox mission parishes referred to as the [insert town name] parish.  Also, one of the mission parishes from my Ruthenian Catholic parish goes by the name of the "Hagerstown misson". 
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #35 on: September 26, 2008, 01:52:49 PM »
Well, their website does say the "Mile High Mission"  :)
And the photo gallery looks like a mission parish too.

What does them having a mission parish have to do with ANYTHING?!?!?

I've heard of more than a couple of Orthodox mission parishes referred to as the [insert town name] parish.  Also, one of the mission parishes from my Ruthenian Catholic parish goes by the name of the "Hagerstown misson". 
I think the point of the aside was to verify the status of the origin of the OP's article - whether it came out of a canonical parish or not.
« Last Edit: September 26, 2008, 04:06:30 PM by Αριστοκλής »
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #36 on: September 26, 2008, 03:43:43 PM »
Does anyone have any idea why Fr. John Peck's article has been removed at his request from the  originating website and all the other sites that had linked it?  I just tried doing a search and it's gone.  That article, whether you agree with it or not, was the hottest thing to hit American Orthodoxy in a good long while.  I can't understand why it has been taken out of the public sphere.

I am not sure of the term "hottest" but I feel that it has something very important to offer the orthodox universe in America.

It seems worth thinking about, talking about and praying about.

The experessions he uses and how he tailored his back-up and examples are rather challenging leaving his main point open to 'blasts of vehement, redicule and outrage'. That is unfortunate for Fr. Peck and those he is trying to reach. 

I think he is trying to paint a very simple picture of a very broad landscape. That is not easy to do at all.

The way he wrote it it seems that the reader would have to be open to his logic and perspective before reading the article to fully appreciate the intended point. Which is OK as long as such persons are the only ones who will be reading the article. But for the general population the article needed to be focused in a very different way in my opinion.
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #37 on: September 26, 2008, 04:58:03 PM »
I think the point of the aside was to verify the status of the origin of the OP's article - whether it came out of a canonical parish or not.

Answer to first question: The mission is canonical since it is listed on GOA's directories

Jackpot, the Church's photo directory gives away St. Anthony's Monastery as origin of said Church.  Look at the final set of pictures and notice that the ground breaking takes place at a location in the middle of nowhere.
Prescott Orthodox Church Picture Gallery

The second question is: where did they come from?  Well, the Church property is owned by a couple who lives in Bullhead City, AZ.  The couple paid $700K for the property in March 2005.  Said couple owes $7,300 in property taxes for a non-profit religious institution.
« Last Edit: September 26, 2008, 05:06:05 PM by SolEX01 »

Offline Anastasios

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #38 on: September 26, 2008, 05:10:37 PM »
I think the point of the aside was to verify the status of the origin of the OP's article - whether it came out of a canonical parish or not.

Answer to first question: The mission is canonical since it is listed on GOA's directories

Jackpot, the Church's photo directory gives away St. Anthony's Monastery as origin of said Church.  Look at the final set of pictures and notice that the ground breaking takes place at a location in the middle of nowhere.
Prescott Orthodox Church Picture Gallery

The second question is: where did they come from?  Well, the Church property is owned by a couple who lives in Bullhead City, AZ.  The couple paid $700K for the property in March 2005.  Said couple owes $7,300 in property taxes for a non-profit religious institution.

I wouldn't be so quick to suggest they are under the spell of St Anthony's--most of the stuff that comes out of St Anthony's is vastly different than the feel I get from this guy.
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Offline SolEX01

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #39 on: September 26, 2008, 05:21:45 PM »
I wouldn't be so quick to suggest they are under the spell of St Anthony's--most of the stuff that comes out of St Anthony's is vastly different than the feel I get from this guy.

I cited two examples of Mission parishes in the GOA Metropolis of New Jersey which have yet to be included on GOA directories while this Prescott Church, in existence less than 2 years, has a GOA directory listing and the funds to build a Church?

When a priest quotes that ethnic Orthodoxy (e.g. the kind of Orthodoxy emulated by St. Anthony's and her 16 like minded entities) is dead in 10-15 years and his "solution" bears a striking resemblance to the St. Anthony's campus (note, I'm restraining myself from using more sinister religious figures for comparison), what is my Jurisdiction thinking and if ethnic Orthodoxy is truly on life support, let AHEPA support all the Hellenic functions like parades, politicizing, et al.   >:(

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #40 on: September 26, 2008, 05:22:27 PM »
I think the point of the aside was to verify the status of the origin of the OP's article - whether it came out of a canonical parish or not.

Answer to first question: The mission is canonical since it is listed on GOA's directories

Jackpot, the Church's photo directory gives away St. Anthony's Monastery as origin of said Church.  Look at the final set of pictures and notice that the ground breaking takes place at a location in the middle of nowhere.
Prescott Orthodox Church Picture Gallery

The second question is: where did they come from?  Well, the Church property is owned by a couple who lives in Bullhead City, AZ.  The couple paid $700K for the property in March 2005.  Said couple owes $7,300 in property taxes for a non-profit religious institution.

I wouldn't be so quick to suggest they are under the spell of St Anthony's--most of the stuff that comes out of St Anthony's is vastly different than the feel I get from this guy.

I would also note that until recently, Fr. John was a priest in the OCA and only recently moved to Arizona.  Previously, he was the pastor at Holy Assumption Orthodox Church in Canton, OH.
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Offline SolEX01

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #41 on: September 26, 2008, 05:30:04 PM »
I would also note that until recently, Fr. John was a priest in the OCA and only recently moved to Arizona.  Previously, he was the pastor at Holy Assumption Orthodox Church in Canton, OH.

I wonder why Father John went west....

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #42 on: September 27, 2008, 02:11:05 PM »
I wouldn't be so quick to suggest they are under the spell of St Anthony's--most of the stuff that comes out of St Anthony's is vastly different than the feel I get from this guy.

I cited two examples of Mission parishes in the GOA Metropolis of New Jersey which have yet to be included on GOA directories while this Prescott Church, in existence less than 2 years, has a GOA directory listing and the funds to build a Church?

Prices are vastly cheaper in AZ than NJ. I am not trying to be argumentative, but that could be a factor.

Quote
When a priest quotes that ethnic Orthodoxy (e.g. the kind of Orthodoxy emulated by St. Anthony's and her 16 like minded entities) is dead in 10-15 years and his "solution" bears a striking resemblance to the St. Anthony's campus (note, I'm restraining myself from using more sinister religious figures for comparison), what is my Jurisdiction thinking and if ethnic Orthodoxy is truly on life support, let AHEPA support all the Hellenic functions like parades, politicizing, et al.   >:(

I'm sorry, I don't get what you are saying?

Are you saying that the guy is influenced by St Athony's, or, are you saying he wants to become the next "St Anthony's" but for converts? Or something entirely different?
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Offline serb1389

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #43 on: September 27, 2008, 02:42:05 PM »
I'm just curious...I've never seen an Orthodox Church not named in honor of a saint or doctrine of the church. Why did they chose the name?


That's an excellent question.  Their website states they are within the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese.  In the parish directory of the GOC it is also listed as the Prescott Orthodox Church.  Could it be that it's a mission parish at this time?  Perhaps someone from the GOC can explain.

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Well, their website does say the "Mile High Mission"  :)
And the photo gallery looks like a mission parish too.

What does them having a mission parish have to do with ANYTHING?!?!?

Ask person I was replying to...the side question was on odd name. Testy, aren't you?

Sorry, I didn't mean to come accross testy, I was not at all.  I wasn't thinking/typing/feeling all that great when I wrote it.  I DEFINITELY apologize.  You did not deserve my mental mistakes. Forgive my brazenness. 

All I was really trying to get at was the concept that just because it is a mission parish, does not mean that it necessarily thinks, acts, behaves or is run in a certain or particular way.  Missions does not equal thinking a certain way, and thinking a certain way does not equal missions.  I should have just said that in the very beginning, but as I explained above...it was a bad day for me. 

Again, please forgive me, I really didn't want to disrupt you or the thread.  Just had a bad day...sorry for taking it out on you.   

Offline PeterTheAleut

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #44 on: September 28, 2008, 02:59:08 AM »
The tangent regarding Elder Ephraim's monasteries split off and moved here:  Concerned about Elder Ephraim's Monasteries
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #45 on: September 29, 2008, 02:43:52 PM »

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #46 on: September 29, 2008, 04:20:02 PM »
BTW, "Essay and Priest Deleted"

http://members5.boardhost.com/STANDREWHOUSE/msg/1222695816.html

Is there any evidence of a causal relationship (i.e. because he wrote the essay he was removed), or is it mere speculation?
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #47 on: September 29, 2008, 04:29:55 PM »
... Priest Deleted"
Hmmm... :-\  Sounds like the work of the Cybermen (see Doctor Who:  "Rise of the Cybermen" and "The Age of Steel").
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Offline Elisha

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #48 on: September 29, 2008, 05:16:32 PM »
BTW, "Essay and Priest Deleted"

http://members5.boardhost.com/STANDREWHOUSE/msg/1222695816.html

Is there any evidence of a causal relationship (i.e. because he wrote the essay he was removed), or is it mere speculation?

No clue - just reporting what I found elsewhere.

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #49 on: September 29, 2008, 05:20:28 PM »
... Priest Deleted"
Hmmm... :-\  Sounds like the work of the Cybermen (see Doctor Who:  "Rise of the Cybermen" and "The Age of Steel").

If the Greek metropolia are the Cybermen, who are the Daleks? ;)
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #50 on: September 29, 2008, 11:15:40 PM »
... Priest Deleted"
Hmmm... :-\  Sounds like the work of the Cybermen (see Doctor Who:  "Rise of the Cybermen" and "The Age of Steel").

If the Greek metropolia are the Cybermen, who are the Daleks? ;)
Don't know.  I just like to think there isn't a priest bad enough that we'd actually want to EXTERMINATE him.  (Sorry, bad joke that only a Doctor Who geek could understand. :-[)

Okay, time for us to put all this silliness aside and get back to discussing the OP. :P
« Last Edit: September 29, 2008, 11:25:47 PM by PeterTheAleut »
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Offline Philothei

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #51 on: October 06, 2008, 05:54:52 PM »
What is there to "discuss"? Some random opinion of a priest who judges the Church's progress by the means of sociology?

For one thing he accuses his ligurgic's prof of not be "God centered" and then goes on to say that sociology "disproves" that the GO church will survive... Contradictions on his thoughts run ramprant... phew...

IMO nothing worth while to discuss.... Just another confussed priest who was propably prematurely ....ordained. If he thinks that abuses that are taken place are NOT trials from the devil... then how is he going to deal with his ministry? He will tell his parishioners that they are not worthy "perfect" chiristians and thus cannot be taking communion or other insteresting kerygma that has nothing to do withatso ever with Christ..... and his Church???
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Offline serb1389

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #52 on: October 07, 2008, 07:42:56 AM »
I have heard from a source who knows the priest, and they told me that he is actually on loan to the GOA from the OCA, and he was speaking about the church in reaction to all of the OCA issues that are going on. 

I think this is an important light to shed on the issue.  Gives us a different perspective as to where he's coming from. 

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #53 on: October 07, 2008, 08:40:31 AM »
What is there to "discuss"? Some random opinion of a priest who judges the Church's progress by the means of sociology?

For one thing he accuses his ligurgic's prof of not be "God centered" and then goes on to say that sociology "disproves" that the GO church will survive... Contradictions on his thoughts run ramprant... phew...

IMO nothing worth while to discuss.... Just another confussed priest who was propably prematurely ....ordained. If he thinks that abuses that are taken place are NOT trials from the devil... then how is he going to deal with his ministry? He will tell his parishioners that they are not worthy "perfect" chiristians and thus cannot be taking communion or other insteresting kerygma that has nothing to do withatso ever with Christ..... and his Church???

I appreciate your comments.

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Offline OrthodoxPilgrim

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #54 on: October 07, 2008, 11:08:05 AM »
Sorry if I sound rude, but I have read this thread and aside from questioning its authenticity and its source, there hasn't been a serious discussion on the nature of the ideas set in this article. And I wonder why?. What did this person state that was so wrong (besides stepping on the toes of a few Greek hierarchs)?

As a transitioning convert into Orthodoxy, I find his article quite refreshing. I am not a big proponent of revolutionary change myself, but I do believe the Orthodox Church of the future will indeed change from the cultural club that it occassionally been depicted as to a more universal body. We see that happening in the United States. I am slowly seeing it happening in a few churches in Canada as well. And logically, most churches that only cater to their own people may possibly experience some form of decrease in its membership down the line due to its staunch unwillingness to deeply indulge in the meltiing pot cultural milleau of contemporary America. This should be of serious concern to any Orthodox Christian who takes his/her faith seriously.

Also, another point that I find that is worthy of discussion and dialogue (which I myself raised but was found fruitless and am hoping that it may get an audience here) is found in Fr. Peck's article as he stated:

Quote
Orthodox Biblical Studies. Orthodox Biblical scholarship will flourish, and will actually advance Biblical Studies, rather than tag along for the latest trends, staying a minimum safe distance back in case the latest theory tanks unexpectedly. Septuagint studies are already on the rise and Orthodox scholars will usurp the lead in this arena, establishing a powerful and lasting influence in Biblical Studies for decades to come. Orthodox higher education -- specifically in Biblical Studies in the Orthodox tradition -- will finally have a place at the doctoral level in the Western hemisphere, and it will become a thriving academic entity. The whole Church will feed on the gleanings of this new scholarship and Scriptural knowledge, preaching, and Biblical morality will invigorate the Church for generations.

What is wrong with this? I frankly see nothing but positive things coming out of Orthodoxy in this regard, but yet no one is enthusiastic enough about this. As someone who is a staunch academic and finds the intellectual pursuit of faith very exciting, I find Orthodox scholarship on fields such as Second Temple Judaism, Dead Sea Scrolls, Intertestemental literature to be either non-existant or on life support. For example, it is hard to find scholarly Orthodox education in the city of Toronto among its major universities (considering that there is no active Orthodox seminary within the University of Toronto), while one is not in hardship to find the best of the best in Catholic and Anglican scholarly education. Something is surely wrong here...either most of the Priests and hierarchs get their M.Div or Counselling degree and then, get a church to look after and never see the gates of a college ever again. Or the scholarly and educated Orthodox communities aren't doing enough to get their men and women out in the public to interact with. Yes, I am quite aware of Jaroslav Pelikan's works but Orthodoxy needs to do more than that....In this dismal condition, I find Fr. John Peck's words to be quite refreshing in that many former Evangelicals who place a lot of stake in the intellectual understanding of faith may/will indeed contribute to Orthodox scholarship in the many decades to come and provide the Orthodox Church, alongside its aged, timeless and priceless spirituality which remains unmatched, with a new, invigorated and intellectual scholarly life within the Church which will only complement the spiritual life of the Church.

For me, ultimately it is these two concerns: Cultural bigotry and lack of a strong intellectual life  (which I do believe causes a serious and disturbing case of intellectual insularity), that trouble me the most within Orthodoxy. Would anyone here, be willing to address these two issues (or atleast pick one) and try to come up with a serious discussion on this instead of disreputing the source of or the person who has written the article?

Thanks.

In Christ,

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« Last Edit: October 07, 2008, 11:11:38 AM by OrthodoxPilgrim »

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #55 on: October 07, 2008, 12:24:11 PM »
OrthodoxPilgrim, I am the farthest thing from  an academic, but I believe you raise some very good points here. Your thoughts on the article are very similar to my own. Why can't we seek after some more depth, some improvement, some freshness in theological studies- I think this would be a great opportunity to witness to many  around us.  I am very often discourged by the spirit of anti-intellectualism regarding the Church, and yet so many people in the Church place an enormous emphasis on getting a good secular education. Why the discrepancy?  ??? I've asked questions about spiritual matters/ Biblical passages, and have often received no answers at all and at other  times been told to "stop reading/ stop thinking".  ::) And yet, so often when I am with groups of Orthodox, all I hear about is whether they got their PhDs from Harvard, Yale, or Princeton...seems to me these folks weren't told to "stop reading/stop thinking"! Or am I missing something?
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #56 on: October 07, 2008, 12:58:12 PM »
Quote
I am very often discourged by the spirit of anti-intellectualism regarding the Church, and yet so many people in the Church place an enormous emphasis on getting a good secular education.

I hope some Orthodox priests are listening in on this....because sooner or later, this may indeed become a very popular sentiment within American Orthodoxy, if this is not taken care of. Americans, and most North Americans, who are quite the questioning lot, will find the rabid anti-intellectualism whcih is sadly present in many Orthodox churches to be a problem.....just give it some time.


Quote
Why the discrepancy?  ??? I've asked questions about spiritual matters/ Biblical passages, and have often received no answers at all and at other  times been told to "stop reading/ stop thinking".  ::) And yet, so often when I am with groups of Orthodox, all I hear about is whether they got their PhDs from Harvard, Yale, or Princeton...seems to me these folks weren't told to "stop reading/stop thinking"! Or am I missing something?

I am going to make an observation here, which I am sure I am going to be attacked for in some way or fashion, but I feel this needs to be said. This increasing reliance on apophatic theology, which relies solely or primarily on a more mystical (and might I say emotional) communion with the Divine within Orthodoxy does have a very disturbing similarity to another movement within Protestant Christianity - Pentecostalism. Pentecostalism, also relies heavily on a more mystical, emotional relationship with God and is rabidly anti-intellectual, in its overall character and feel. Try speaking to a Pentecostal by bringing about references from Hebrew and Koine Greek lexicons and intertestemental literature in trying to show them their doctrinal errors, their reply is typically one that is very unsympathetic to an intellectual pursuit of Truth. This is the same sentiment I get within Orthodoxy as well (or to be more precise, some quarters of Orthodoxy)......sad, but true.

Also, those Ph.D's you mention....were they in the fields of Early Christian History or Historical/Dogmatic Theology or NT/OT studies or Second Temple Judaism or anything pertaining to Christianity or the Church ?....I mean, a Ph.D can be obtained in anything these days...perhaps, they are encouraged by their religious leaders to think in the various secular fields that they belong to, but when it comes to that of the religious, all thinking hats must be taken off.  :-[

+
« Last Edit: October 07, 2008, 12:59:37 PM by OrthodoxPilgrim »

Offline Philothei

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #57 on: October 07, 2008, 01:06:59 PM »
Quote
Sorry if I sound rude, but I have read this thread and aside from questioning its authenticity and its source, there hasn't been a serious discussion on the nature of the ideas set in this article. And I wonder why?. What did this person state that was so wrong (besides stepping on the toes of a few Greek hierarchs)?

it goes deeper than toes.... it is about a priest "knowing better" than his hierarchy ...if he truly cared he would have gone to them instead of slandering the Church he was under. His letter hardly solves as he is pretty inconsistant as to what he says...

There is no "decline" of the GOA. If he believes there is he could have brought forth proof but ....that is too much work instead he just "claims" to know... and that should be enough to steer contraversy and make an impression against the GOA...

Second it is about not fully comprehending what Orthodoxy is all about and taking the faith out of context.
Quote
As a transitioning convert into Orthodoxy, I find his article quite refreshing. I am not a big proponent of revolutionary change myself, but I do believe the Orthodox Church of the future will indeed change from the cultural club that it occassionally been depicted as to a more universal body. We see that happening in the United States. I am slowly seeing it happening in a few churches in Canada as well. And logically, most churches that only cater to their own people may possibly experience some form of decrease in its membership down the line due to its staunch unwillingness to deeply indulge in the meltiing pot cultural milleau of contemporary America. This should be of serious concern to any Orthodox Christian who takes his/her faith seriously.


Culture in America is a tapestry of different colors... let's see when the Russians converted to Orthodoxy did they accept also the byzantine culture yes for the longest time they did but it did not last long as they had ONE culture and that sipped through the byzantine that ultimately became a 'melting pot" for both cultures... what we have today of russian orthodox experience and church. What culture are we talking about in America??? Spanish, native american, anglosaxon?? you decide... I do not see it any ONE culture in America since I have been here.. Kicking out the 'clubs" maybe a solution to what? Fr. Peck is lost in space and he is too premature to think that it is the cultural problem that does not enable "converts" to enter the Church... In his frustration about his phenomenological "decline" he attributes all evils to that... How sad the immigrant church that nurtured and brought orthodoxy here in the new land to be faced with eviction.... of its own members... The child church saying to its mother.. go away you are old and ugly and I do not need you anymore. Trully a good example for the EO church in proclaiming its message of Christ as "more" christian and loving a true gem.. .to treasure for the future generation... Where is the humility of Christ here? Where is the love? Sorry but I only see retribution... in Fr. Peck's words...


Quote
pursuit of faith very exciting, I find Orthodox scholarship on fields such as Second Temple Judaism, Dead Sea Scrolls, Intertestemental literature to be either non-existant or on life support. For example, it is hard to find scholarly Orthodox education in the city of Toronto among its major universities (considering that there is no active Orthodox seminary within the University of Toronto), while one is not in hardship to find the best of the best in Catholic and Anglican scholarly education. Something is surely wrong here...either most of the Priests and hierarchs get their M.Div or Counselling degree and then, get a church to look after and never see the gates of a college ever again. Or the scholarly and educated Orthodox communities aren't doing enough to get their men and women out in the public to interact with. Yes, I am quite aware of Jaroslav Pelikan's works but Orthodoxy needs to do more than that....In this dismal condition, I find Fr. John Peck's words to be quite refreshing in that many former Evangelicals who place a lot of stake in the intellectual understanding of faith may/will indeed contribute to Orthodox scholarship in the many decades to come and provide the Orthodox Church, alongside its aged, timeless and priceless spirituality which remains unmatched, with a new, invigorated and intellectual scholarly life within the Church which will only complement the spiritual life of the Church.


Where is the scholarship? Whereever you are willing to look... Are you sure that most priests do not have a second masters or a PhD. ? At least half I would dare say of the GOA priests own another or a doctorate degree. If you live inToronto then boston would be your place to look. Plenty of professors in major Academic institutions are teaching and witnessing there... Just a quick mention that our Arch Demetrios is a harvard graduate of Ancient Christian origins and was teaching that in Harvard as well as at Holy Cross i am proud to be his student of years past... :) While in Harvard two of very prominent Harvant proffessors (a couple) converted to Orthodoxy. In their testimony they refered to Metropolitan (then) Demetrios for their conversion. They are both in the Ancient Judaism scholars. Just because we do not know people or the GOA does not "advertize' it that does not mean we do not have people either hierarchy, clergy or lay who are involved with scholarship .... There goes the generalization again .... wow...
Anyhow all the patristics as writings are not "enough' proof to you or anyone that the EO church is scholarly then nothing else will do.... Modern scholarship also has nothing to do with belief and faith... and I think the EO church has plenty to offer through its spirituality that it does not need to be 'competing ' with any other secularly minded religious expression....or it will be giving in to scholasticism of the west and we know very well where that would lead our church......
Quote
For me, ultimately it is these two concerns: Cultural bigotry and lack of a strong intellectual life  (which I do believe causes a serious and disturbing case of intellectual insularity), that trouble me the most within Orthodoxy. Would anyone here, be willing to address these two issues (or atleast pick one) and try to come up with a serious discussion on this instead of disreputing the source of or the person who has written the article

let so be it then... if "bigotry" in your 'unsubstantiated" standards and experience is your ONLY concern then I feel that Orthdooxy or any other faith will nto do then...As my guess will be that if you enter any parish in this land....guess what bigotry will be there one way or another... because guess what people are not perfect... and they are weak...How is this GOA problem? has GOA in its official site anything you think it teaches such bigotry? no... Then you are battling with people's weakensses and we are all guilty of not only GOA parishes but all... parishes.

The church is not a "school of thought" or a philosophical or historical informal schooling battle ground... it is faith, spritual knowledge personal growth and devotion... "intellectual life" is an academic term and belongs to the academic world.... not a church expression.

The issues Fr. peck brings forth are not worth the time of the day as they are just examples of immaturity and shallow thinking. The reason why it makes it relevant is to know why would a priest would be moved to write something like that to his parishioners ... hoping that his parishioners will do what? Anger them? make them close the doors of the church to the craddle orhtodox in punishment??? one is left but to wonder ....
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Offline Heracleides

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #58 on: October 07, 2008, 01:12:53 PM »
Quote
I am very often discourged by the spirit of anti-intellectualism regarding the Church, and yet so many people in the Church place an enormous emphasis on getting a good secular education.

I hope some Orthodox priests are listening in on this....because sooner or later, this may indeed become a very popular sentiment within American Orthodoxy, if this is not taken care of. Americans, and most North Americans, who are quite the questioning lot, will find the rabid anti-intellectualism whcih is sadly present in many Orthodox churches to be a problem.....just give it some time.


Quote
Why the discrepancy?  ??? I've asked questions about spiritual matters/ Biblical passages, and have often received no answers at all and at other  times been told to "stop reading/ stop thinking".  ::) And yet, so often when I am with groups of Orthodox, all I hear about is whether they got their PhDs from Harvard, Yale, or Princeton...seems to me these folks weren't told to "stop reading/stop thinking"! Or am I missing something?

I am going to make an observation here, which I am sure I am going to be attacked for in some way or fashion, but I feel this needs to be said. This increasing reliance on apophatic theology, which relies solely or primarily on a more mystical (and might I say emotional) communion with the Divine within Orthodoxy does have a very disturbing similarity to another movement within Protestant Christianity - Pentecostalism. Pentecostalism, also relies heavily on a more mystical, emotional relationship with God and is rabidly anti-intellectual, in its overall character and feel. Try speaking to a Pentecostal by bringing about references from Hebrew and Koine Greek lexicons and intertestemental literature in trying to show them their doctrinal errors, their reply is typically one that is very unsympathetic to an intellectual pursuit of Truth. This is the same sentiment I get within Orthodoxy as well (or to be more precise, some quarters of Orthodoxy)......sad, but true.

Also, those Ph.D's you mention....were they in the fields of Early Christian History or Historical/Dogmatic Theology or NT/OT studies or Second Temple Judaism or anything pertaining to Christianity or the Church ?....I mean, a Ph.D can be obtained in anything these days...perhaps, they are encouraged by their religious leaders to think in the various secular fields that they belong to, but when it comes to that of the religious, all thinking hats must be taken off.  :-[

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Not to be contrarian, but it sounds to me as if you might be advocating an Orthodox version of Latin Scholasticism?  Is this true?  If so, then God preserve us from such a 'spiritually desolate' (I am being polite) movement.
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Offline Philothei

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #59 on: October 07, 2008, 01:16:56 PM »
 
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hope some Orthodox priests are listening in on this....because sooner or later, this may indeed become a very popular sentiment within American Orthodoxy, if this is not taken care of. Americans, and most North Americans, who are quite the questioning lot, will find the rabid anti-intellectualism whcih is sadly present in many Orthodox churches to be a problem.....just give it some time.




again generalization upon generalizations and accusing a whole church of not doing their homework... it would be helpful to bring forth some evidence that testifies to that... i did with Boston that is the largest Ivy league city in the US ..and truly the EO presence is so prominent there from all kinds of scholarly activity. just because people do not see that that does not mean necessarily that it is not... sorry.
Actually I have been in Christian forums quite frequently and my experience has been that we as Orthodox are shiny examples of explaining and deepening conversations in faith as our background esp those who are native greek, able to translate the hellenistic Greek of the bible.... I do not see how our theologians luck any scholarly capability compaired to those of other faiths.... The inability of past generations to communicate the faith orally due to the lack of the english language might have led to the belief that ethnic churches are somehow 'suppresng" intellectual questioning but nowadays it is hardly the case.
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Offline OrthodoxPilgrim

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #60 on: October 07, 2008, 01:41:50 PM »
Finally, a discussion!! (yaaaay!!)



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it goes deeper than toes.... it is about a priest "knowing better" than his hierarchy ...if he truly cared he would have gone to them instead of slandering the Church he was under.

Perhaps my wording didn't stress this enough. I will put a bit more emphasis on this a little bit more now: I mentioned that aside from stepping on the toes of a hew Greek hierarchs, what did he do wrong? Meaning, I have, albeit quite impassionately but nonetheless, affirmed that he did indeed commit a wrongdoing in stepping on the proverbial toes (thereby, disrespecting) of his own hierarchs, instead of respecting authority and going to them first instead of spewing things out. Just wanted to get that point across....


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Culture in America is a tapestry of different colors... let's see when the Russians converted to Orthodoxy did they accept also the byzantine culture yes for the longest time they did but it did not last long as they had ONE culture and that sipped through the byzantine that ultimately became a 'melting pot" for both cultures... what we have today of russian orthodox experience and church. What culture are we talking about in America??? Spanish, native american, anglosaxon?? you decide... I do not see it any ONE culture in America since I have been here..

Actually, technically speaking, America is the melting pot, and Canada is the mosaic wherein Every culture has its own identity and is not forced to accomodate to some pan-Canadian culture of sorts. Since America is a melting-pot, the staunch culturalism in some Orthodox circles may turn off individuals who are looking into Orthodoxy, that is all I am saying. This may not be as strong of a road block within Canada since its "mosaic" type of culture enables people to be better accomodated to different cultures than Americans.

 
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Kicking out the 'clubs" maybe a solution to what? Fr. Peck is lost in space and he is too premature to think that it is the cultural problem that does not enable "converts" to enter the Church... In his frustration about his phenomenological "decline" he attributes all evils to that... How sad the immigrant church that nurtured and brought orthodoxy here in the new land to be faced with eviction.... of its own members... The child church saying to its mother.. go away you are old and ugly and I do not need you anymore. Trully a good example for the EO church in proclaiming its message of Christ as "more" christian and loving a true gem.. .to treasure for the future generation... Where is the humility of Christ here? Where is the love? Sorry but I only see retribution... in Fr. Peck's words...

As an Indian who is proud of his Indian cultural heritage and is quite happy in seeing it in the religious life, let me say this one thing: I do not belong to Fe. Peck's opinion that the solution to the problem of cultural bigotry in the church is to complete eradicate the cultures that brought about Orthodoxy into America. I believe the Orthodox Church can indeed balance both the Universal calling given to it by her Lord and the preservation of its local cultures. I bleieve both can indeed live in harmony...however, my criticism is laid on the extreme focus of certain Orthodox quarters on the preservation of its local cultures and not enough on the universal aspect of the Church whatsoever. This is my problem....




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Where is the scholarship? Whereever you are willing to look... Are you sure that most priests do not have a second masters or a PhD. ? At least half I would dare say of the GOA priests own another or a doctorate degree. If you live inToronto then boston would be your place to look. Plenty of professors in major Academic institutions are teaching and witnessing there... Just a quick mention that our Arch Demetrios is a harvard graduate of Ancient Christian origins and was teaching that in Harvard as well as at Holy Cross i am proud to be his student of years past... :) While in Harvard two of very prominent Harvant proffessors (a couple) converted to Orthodoxy. In their testimony they refered to Metropolitan (then) Demetrios for their conversion. They are both in the Ancient Judaism scholars. Just because we do not know people or the GOA does not "advertize' it that does not mean we do not have people either hierarchy, clergy or lay who are involved with scholarship .... There goes the generalization again .... wow...

I assure you, that this isn't a generalization but a serious problem within Orthodoxy. It may not be the problem within your quarter of the GOA (my criticism is not towards the GOA but the entirety of Orthodoxy, both Oriental and Eastern...when looked at its entirety, it is not doing as good of a job as it ought to be)

Also, I am quite happy to see that you are providing me with names and people who do not fit the above criticism. I am humbled and happy by their presence. If you can provide me with more information with them, I would greatly appreciate it.

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Anyhow all the patristics as writings are not "enough' proof to you or anyone that the EO church is scholarly then nothing else will do.... Modern scholarship also has nothing to do with belief and faith... and I think the EO church has plenty to offer through its spirituality that it does not need to be 'competing ' with any other secularly minded religious expression....or it will be giving in to scholasticism of the west and we know very well where that would lead our church......

This is the crux of the problem righ here. Many Orthodox feel that there is no need to pursue serious scholarly studies since the Fathers "did it all". Might I remind you that the Orthodox Church, being the Church of the Apostles and the Fathers, boasts an immense patristic tradition, founded by Fathers who were highly educated in the fields of Theology, Sciences and Philosophy. It is becuase of the very same Patristic tradition you boast about that I am concerned about the life of the Church. Unlike Latin Scolasticism, the scholarly pursuits of the Fathers did indeed involve using the best of the best of secular knowledge that was made accessible to them at the time, but they used it for the glory of Christ and his Church...to succumb and defeat all heresies and put it under the trampling foot of the resurrected Christ. This is my wish....that Orthodoxy rediscover the pursuit of scholasticism - ONLY within the sphere and greater context of glorifying Christ and his Church....Latin scholasticism, while pursuing a scholastic pursuit of Christ, was completely devoid of God and his guidance, which eventually resulted in the falling, confusion and destruction of the ancient scholastic pursuit of Truth within Scripture and Tradition, using the very reason and intellect our God has bestowed upon us.

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let so be it then... if "bigotry" in your 'unsubstantiated" standards and experience is your ONLY concern then I feel that Orthdooxy or any other faith will nto do then...As my guess will be that if you enter any parish in this land....guess what bigotry will be there one way or another... because guess what people are not perfect... and they are weak...How is this GOA problem? has GOA in its official site anything you think it teaches such bigotry? no... Then you are battling with people's weakensses and we are all guilty of not only GOA parishes but all... parishes.

hehe...a concern is different from a roadblock to faith, my brother. My roadblocks to faith were entirely doctrinal (and most of them have been dealt with). These are legitimate concerns....as an Anglican friend of mine once said recently when he learnt about my dissatisfaction with Anglicanism and a slow progression into Orthodxy: "Whereever you go in life, you must learn to commit to one set of problems...it depends on which set of problems you wish to be committed to."....The scriptures itself show that bigotry and problems existed from the very beginning of Christ's Church....my reason for outlining the problems within Orthodoxy is to not malign it and to depict these challenges as a sort of "road blocK" to my journey into Orthodoxy. Rather, they are challenges, that must and will be met by the new generation of ORthodox faithful, both laymen and clergy. I was simply trying to get a discussion going on some of Orthodoxy's challenges...that is all.


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The church is not a "school of thought" or a philosophical or historical informal schooling battle ground... it is faith, spritual knowledge personal growth and devotion... "intellectual life" is an academic term and belongs to the academic world.... not a church expression.

Sure...I never said it was a "school of though". But our spiritual fathers must be equipped to fight the battles that lay before us in the future. As Orthodoxy expands into Protestant America, Protestant theologians who see their classes slightly diminishing will take on the cause of fighting against Orthodoxy (as it has already started). I only wish for Orthodoxy to do well in this regard...whcih is why we must be well equipped with the knowledge, available to us today and stop relying too heavily on apophaic theology and try to keep the mystical life of the Church in balance with a sober and vibrant Christ and Church centred, intellectuality.

Another Prodigal Son

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Offline Philothei

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #61 on: October 07, 2008, 01:43:46 PM »
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I am going to make an observation here, which I am sure I am going to be attacked for in some way or fashion, but I feel this needs to be said. This increasing reliance on apophatic theology, which relies solely or primarily on a more mystical (and might I say emotional) communion with the Divine within Orthodoxy does have a very disturbing similarity to another movement within Protestant Christianity - Pentecostalism. Pentecostalism, also relies heavily on a more mystical, emotional relationship with God and is rabidly anti-intellectual, in its overall character and feel. Try speaking to a Pentecostal by bringing about references from Hebrew and Koine Greek lexicons and intertestemental literature in trying to show them their doctrinal errors, their reply is typically one that is very unsympathetic to an intellectual pursuit of Truth. This is the same sentiment I get within Orthodoxy as well (or to be more precise, some quarters of Orthodoxy)......sad, but true.


There is no "increase"  on apophatism. EO was partly based on it due to both depending on the Revelation of God which is Judaism and also the kataphatism of the Platonic idea of God... there is a balance... We cannot go too kataphatic as we narrow God's essence and we cannot be too apophatic as we become agnostics... And there will never be attack on theology although new would like to say that we are all learning here ... It is when people make sweeping generalizations that usually is pretty disturbing to me... What you are saying I understand but it is off topic ... I hear you though as you want a clarification to what is "emotional" and what is mystery... hmmm big converstation for we are in the middle of another topic.

Fr. Peck's article i think does not even goes that far...

I would agree with you on that laity of the old country is not so versed with the Bible. They know theology through the hymns and reading of the Church and through the 'repetition' they recall and can defend ... sometimes more than a knowledgable theologian. Hm... compairing Pentacostals to Orthodox?

Well, they are waaaay different I think.. .Pentacostals have no tradition no formal worshiping trad. we do. They rely on scripture we do not. Mystery is the way that the gifts are "changed" into body and blood of Christ... there is no mystery in Pentacostalism ONLY emotion... and "illusion" that speaking the tongues is a command from God to do...I am trying hard but cannot see how the two can be similar somehow....sorry.

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an intellectual pursuit of Truth.
Where in your bible it talks about that? that we have to be pursuing the intellect? I sense there is a source on the frustration you feel.... what is it? In Orthodoxy we are told to progress in our spiritual life instead. Evagrius the pontikos said" He who prays is a theologian" you think that he was wrong to say that? We use our intellect to communicate information but we are not gnostics we do not believe that gnosis saves... We can 'know' God by our intellect ONLY to a point... then we have to experience Him in prayer.


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Also, those Ph.D's you mention....were they in the fields of Early Christian History or Historical/Dogmatic Theology or NT/OT studies or Second Temple Judaism or anything pertaining to Christianity or the Church ?....I mean, a Ph.D can be obtained in anything these days...perhaps, they are encouraged by their religious leaders to think in the various secular fields that they belong to, but when it comes to that of the religious, all thinking hats must be taken off.  


yes, they were theology dept not history... etc. Do not understand your point  here.. First you say they do not have education then I present to you with evidence since I am grad of a seminary myself and happen to know many who have went on to study Theology...and then you are saying they get off their 'hats" why? no one is asking them to do that... You think that a person cannot discern how sound Orthodox theology relates to their subject of study? Most do know how to do that. IMO you need to understand that your struggles (as expressed here) is with they laity and with the clergy... because you are looking for answers to your questions as you are approching Orthodoxy... and they are valid questions...

still does not justify Fr. Pecks' as he should have already be aware of the answers.
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Offline OrthodoxPilgrim

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #62 on: October 07, 2008, 02:14:19 PM »
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Well, they are waaaay different I think.. .Pentacostals have no tradition no formal worshiping trad. we do. They rely on scripture we do not. Mystery is the way that the gifts are "changed" into body and blood of Christ... there is no mystery in Pentacostalism ONLY emotion... and "illusion" that speaking the tongues is a command from God to do...I am trying hard but cannot see how the two can be similar somehow....sorry.

The ONLY similarity I see between (again: I emphasise this, certain quarters of) Orthodoxy and much of Pentecostalism is the complete abandonment of the intellectual pursuit of Truth...which leads me to the next point.

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Where in your bible it talks about that? that we have to be pursuing the intellect? I sense there is a source on the frustration you feel.... what is it? In Orthodoxy we are told to progress in our spiritual life instead. Evagrius the pontikos said" He who prays is a theologian" you think that he was wrong to say that? We use our intellect to communicate information but we are not gnostics we do not believe that gnosis saves... We can 'know' God by our intellect ONLY to a point... then we have to experience Him in prayer.

I agree with you 100%. Our Lord himself REASONED with the Pharisees daily in the Temple as he himself outlines plenty of times in Scripture, especially during his trial. The Lord Jesus Christ himself says, "Thou shall love the Lord your God, with all your Heart, with all your soul, and with all your MIND, and with all your Strength" (Mark 12:30)...this holistic spiritual love of God is what I am trying to stress. You are either creating a false distinction (or are, rather assuming that I am creating a false distinction) between the Love of God through the mind and the Love of God through the Heart, Soul and Strength (since Christ himself alongside his Apostles, reasoned with the Jews and the Pagans to prove the centrality of Christ's authority in human salvation using both scripture and Pagan sources, and early Fathers such as St. Justin Martyr and post-Nicene fathers such as St. John of Damascus, St. Isaac the Syrian, who REASONED from scripture and the available sources of their time to prove the truth of the usage of Icons and the truth of the Christian faith (vs. the Judaic and/or the Islamic faith)) or have incorrectly assumed that I am stressing the need of Latin Scholsticism within Orthodoxy. There are great examples of Church fathers, who THROUGH their spiritual life, used their intellect to glorify God and His Church......OF COURSE, the intellect, on its own, cannot ever understand the length and breadth of God...never did I state such a thing. I am simply stating AGAIN....that the long lost tradition of pursuing the intellectual path towards God (within the context of Spirituality and the Glorifying of Christ and his Church) be rediscovered in several quaraters of the Orthodox Church...

My heart leaps for joy and happiness in reading (and hearing of the prsence of) intellectuals within Orthodoxy....but sadly, I have no access to them, have either heard very few accounts, or have never heard of them at all. And I do agree with you that just becuase I haven't heard them, does not in anyway mean that there is none whatsoever. In time, I hope that Orthodox intellectualism doesn't remain this unheard of and in time, will be given more time in the sun.

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yes, they were theology dept not history... etc. Do not understand your point  here.. First you say they do not have education then I present to you with evidence since I am grad of a seminary myself and happen to know many who have went on to study Theology...and then you are saying they get off their 'hats" why? no one is asking them to do that... You think that a person cannot discern how sound Orthodox theology relates to their subject of study? Most do know how to do that. IMO you need to understand that your struggles (as expressed here) is with they laity and with the clergy... because you are looking for answers to your questions as you are approching Orthodoxy... and they are valid questions...

My reason for posing that question was that, simply put, there are other fields, besides Theology and Philsophy that people can earn tehir dictorate. My question was innocent in its intent, in that, I simply was wondering if their Ph.D's were in a subject of interest in Theology and Church History.....since there is indeed (within some quarters of Orthodoxy) less of a stress on the intellectual pursuit of Truth (as outlined above i.e. not Latin Scholasticism), I was simply wondering if the particular poster (i.e. Rosehip) was aware if their doctorate stuies was in Theology, Church history or any subject that is IMMEDIATELY connected to the life of the Church....and if it was, I was actually wondering if I could get some access into some of it....that was my intent....my intent was NOT to say that other people who study other subhects cannot relate to Orthodoxy (wow.....that was indeed an interesting take on my words) but rather, to simply dig more and try to connect with Orthodox intellectuals.....nothing more, nothing less.

I do humbly apologize if I have offended anyone. Please take note, that I did not mean to offend anyone it in anyway whatsoever. I see the Orthodox Church (both Oriental and Orthodox) as true gems and would hate to see it being mistreated....that is why, I raised certain questions....so, for the record, if a discussion needs to take place, please try not to be aggressive or frustrated with my questions (as my questions are only intending to edify and not to destroy).

In Christ

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« Last Edit: October 07, 2008, 02:36:48 PM by OrthodoxPilgrim »

Offline OrthodoxPilgrim

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #63 on: October 07, 2008, 03:46:04 PM »
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that we have to be pursuing the intellect? I sense there is a source on the frustration you feel.... what is it?

I didn't say that we should be pursuing intellect.....I said that we should be pursuing God, using our intellect. We ought to be using the minds and brains that our Lord has given us to pursue Truth....Just to clarify, pursuit is different from attainment. I can pursue something..but that does not directly or indirectly mean that I will attain what I am pursuing. God wants us to question, think, ponder upon and ask questions....if he didn't want us to think and use our intellect, he simply would have made us as brain-dead automatons who are simply following orders. He has given us the faculty of thought to use it to glorify him....My frustration stems from the fact that (some quarters of) Orthodoxy isn't doing what it used to do before (again: this may not be the case in the GOA, but it is certainly the case when looking at the immense size of Global Orthodoxy)....While I see this as deeply frustrating, I take this as a challenge as well (since clergymen within Orthodox circles who notice the same problem as I do have only applauded my efforts in trying to contribute to its change...so I take that as a step in the right direction).
« Last Edit: October 07, 2008, 03:47:30 PM by OrthodoxPilgrim »

Offline Amdetsion

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #64 on: October 07, 2008, 03:55:24 PM »
OrthodoxPilgrim, I am the farthest thing from  an academic, but I believe you raise some very good points here. Your thoughts on the article are very similar to my own. Why can't we seek after some more depth, some improvement, some freshness in theological studies- I think this would be a great opportunity to witness to many  around us.  I am very often discourged by the spirit of anti-intellectualism regarding the Church, and yet so many people in the Church place an enormous emphasis on getting a good secular education. Why the discrepancy?  ??? I've asked questions about spiritual matters/ Biblical passages, and have often received no answers at all and at other  times been told to "stop reading/ stop thinking".  ::) And yet, so often when I am with groups of Orthodox, all I hear about is whether they got their PhDs from Harvard, Yale, or Princeton...seems to me these folks weren't told to "stop reading/stop thinking"! Or am I missing something?

Well said!
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Offline Veniamin

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #65 on: October 07, 2008, 06:51:00 PM »
Quote
hope some Orthodox priests are listening in on this....because sooner or later, this may indeed become a very popular sentiment within American Orthodoxy, if this is not taken care of. Americans, and most North Americans, who are quite the questioning lot, will find the rabid anti-intellectualism whcih is sadly present in many Orthodox churches to be a problem.....just give it some time.




again generalization upon generalizations and accusing a whole church of not doing their homework... it would be helpful to bring forth some evidence that testifies to that... i did with Boston that is the largest Ivy league city in the US ..and truly the EO presence is so prominent there from all kinds of scholarly activity. just because people do not see that that does not mean necessarily that it is not... sorry.
Actually I have been in Christian forums quite frequently and my experience has been that we as Orthodox are shiny examples of explaining and deepening conversations in faith as our background esp those who are native greek, able to translate the hellenistic Greek of the bible.... I do not see how our theologians luck any scholarly capability compaired to those of other faiths.... The inability of past generations to communicate the faith orally due to the lack of the english language might have led to the belief that ethnic churches are somehow 'suppresng" intellectual questioning but nowadays it is hardly the case.


There's one glaring problem with your reference to how Orthodox on internet fora act as being some sort of reflection of how we are as a whole.  Quite simply, you're ignoring the self-selection factor.  The people who participate in an internet forum are highly likely to be people who are the most interested in such a subject and thus, the most likely to be knowledgeable about it (with the rest being those wanting to learn more and seeking out those who are more knowledgeable).  It's not a representative sample of Orthodox faithful as a whole, where you will have a much more pronounced mix of those who are knowledgeable, those who are less so, and those who have no idea what's going on.  If you want to take issue with someone making "generalization upon generalizations," you should be very careful to make sure that you don't turn around and do the same thing in rebuttal.
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Offline SolEX01

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #66 on: October 11, 2008, 11:02:10 PM »
Terry Mattingly publishes article about the fallout from Fr. John Peck's sermon: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow.  Key excerpts as follows (quoting Fr. Peck): 

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"The notion that traditionally Orthodox ethnic groups (the group of 'our people' we hear so much about from our primates and hierarchs) are going to populate the ranks of the clergy, and therefore, the Church in the future is, frankly, a pipe dream," he wrote. The reality is that many American clergy and laity -- some converts, but many ethnic leaders as well -- refuse to "accept the Church as a club of any kind, or closed circle kaffeeklatsch. No old world embassies will be tolerated for much longer.

Offline SolEX01

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #67 on: October 26, 2008, 06:32:48 PM »
Is it unusual for a GOA Church to be listed without any times for services even though the Church is now served by Metropolis Clergy?

GOA listing for Prescott Orthodox Church

Offline John of the North

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #68 on: October 26, 2008, 06:45:39 PM »
Is it unusual for a GOA Church to be listed without any times for services even though the Church is now served by Metropolis Clergy?

GOA listing for Prescott Orthodox Church

Not if the same listing links to the website with the schedule...
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Offline SolEX01

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #69 on: October 26, 2008, 07:09:20 PM »
Not if the same listing links to the website with the schedule...

Good point even though the implicit assumption is that the Church's website is maintained and there are clergy available to serve Liturgy.  Thanks for the clarification.   :)

Offline GiC

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #70 on: October 26, 2008, 07:31:07 PM »
Is it unusual for a GOA Church to be listed without any times for services even though the Church is now served by Metropolis Clergy?

GOA listing for Prescott Orthodox Church

They probably just dont want to go to the trouble of submitting times whenever things change to update the archdiocese website, but they do provide a link to their website which has their schedule: http://www.prescottorthodox.org/schedule.html

Offline SolEX01

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #71 on: October 26, 2008, 07:52:37 PM »
They probably just dont want to go to the trouble of submitting times whenever things change to update the archdiocese website, but they do provide a link to their website which has their schedule: http://www.prescottorthodox.org/schedule.html

I was reading more into the exclusion of service times (e.g. something happened regarding the Church's status) than warranted.   :-[

Offline AMM

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #72 on: October 28, 2008, 12:11:17 PM »
They should shamelessly rip off the Colonel and put up a "We do Orthodoxy right!" sign.

What could be a good exploration of some legitimate topics gets totally lost in the numerous exaggerations, over-generalizations, and some just plain old wishful thinking ("feed on the gleanings"...).  Convert screeds are convert screeds, all just as tiresome to read as the last one.

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« Last Edit: October 28, 2008, 03:52:22 PM by AMM »

Offline SolEX01

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #73 on: October 28, 2008, 12:16:12 PM »
^ Huh?   ???

Offline tuesdayschild

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #74 on: October 28, 2008, 12:58:30 PM »
Convert screeds are convert screeds, all just as tiresome to read as the last one.

When somebody invites you to their house, you don't defecate on their carpet.

There's nothing quite like being made to feel like a guest in my own house::)

Or did I misunderstand the priest who chrismated me when he said, "Welcome home"?
« Last Edit: October 28, 2008, 02:08:04 PM by PeterTheAleut »

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #75 on: October 28, 2008, 03:56:30 PM »
Quote
Or did I misunderstand the priest who chrismated me when he said, "Welcome home"?

That's just an exaggeration, just as a good deal of what's in the "Orthodox Church or Tomorrow" essay is.

Offline tuesdayschild

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #76 on: October 28, 2008, 04:20:13 PM »
Quote
Or did I misunderstand the priest who chrismated me when he said, "Welcome home"?

That's just an exaggeration, just as a good deal of what's in the "Orthodox Church or Tomorrow" essay is.

Please clarify, because this reads as though you are saying that the priest who said "Welcome home" was exaggerating.
« Last Edit: October 28, 2008, 04:20:47 PM by tuesdayschild »

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #77 on: October 28, 2008, 04:45:37 PM »
To take myself as an example, - as a person of Northern European extraction and nominal Protestant familial lineage; Byzantine Chalcedonian Orthodoxy in its various cultural and ethnic incarnations is to me as much "home" as Zen Buddhism.  It (Orthodoxy) is my adopted home, but it would be a ridiculous exaggeration to say I had "come home".

Maybe as a convert it is my right to perceive that the whole system would come apart without me, that the people who have been Orthodox for generations are clueless (or worse), or that my being in the church will introduce a new golden age in its life.  I think those would be more ridiculous exaggerations though.  It's convert fantasy world.


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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #78 on: October 28, 2008, 05:03:46 PM »
To take myself as an example, - as a person of Northern European extraction and nominal Protestant familial lineage; Byzantine Chalcedonian Orthodoxy in its various cultural and ethnic incarnations is to me as much "home" as Zen Buddhism.  It (Orthodoxy) is my adopted home, but it would be a ridiculous exaggeration to say I had "come home".

Thank you for clarifying.  I do not believe the priest meant to welcome me home to Russian culture.  Insofar as I come to Orthodoxy, as we all do, by the mysteries, the Church is as much my home (one facet of his intended meaning) as it is that of any other Orthodox.

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #79 on: October 28, 2008, 09:02:46 PM »
Quote
I do not believe the priest meant to welcome me home to Russian culture.

Yet it is now part of your home.

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #80 on: October 28, 2008, 09:35:21 PM »
Yet it is now part of your home.

I think the notion of a "cultureless" Church is a pipe dream. The Church is flesh and blood, not some ethereal, unconnected ideal floating in mid space. Indeed, the article by Fr. Peck quoted in the OP shows his own heterodox cultural baggage, since he quotes the KJV to an Orthodox Christian audience (as pointed out by SolEX01).
Russian culture has been infused with Orthodoxy for a thousand years, Fr. Peck's "KJV Christianity" has not. I'd rather incorporate Russian culture into my Greek-Australian Orthodox Christian home than Fr. Pecks KJV culture.
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #81 on: October 28, 2008, 10:31:39 PM »
Quote
I do not believe the priest meant to welcome me home to Russian culture.

Yet it is now part of your home.

If it were as you say, I think I would have been compelled to take a Slavic saint as my patron.  But at least we agree I am at home.  :)

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #82 on: October 28, 2008, 10:47:40 PM »
They should shamelessly rip off the Colonel and put up a "We do Orthodoxy right!" sign.

What could be a good exploration of some legitimate topics gets totally lost in the numerous exaggerations, over-generalizations, and some just plain old wishful thinking ("feed on the gleanings"...).  Convert screeds are convert screeds, all just as tiresome to read as the last one.

When somebody invites you to their house, you don't...
tell me I can't sing in Church Slavonic or Ukrainian?

Fixed your quote tags - Cleveland, GM
« Last Edit: October 28, 2008, 11:36:11 PM by cleveland »

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #83 on: October 28, 2008, 10:50:30 PM »
Yet it is now part of your home.

I think the notion of a "cultureless" Church is a pipe dream. The Church is flesh and blood, not some ethereal, unconnected ideal floating in mid space. Indeed, the article by Fr. Peck quoted in the OP shows his own heterodox cultural baggage, since he quotes the KJV to an Orthodox Christian audience (as pointed out by SolEX01).
Russian culture has been infused with Orthodoxy for a thousand years, Fr. Peck's "KJV Christianity" has not. I'd rather incorporate Russian culture into my Greek-Australian Orthodox Christian home than Fr. Pecks KJV culture.

Post of the Month nominee!!!!!!

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #84 on: October 28, 2008, 11:42:08 PM »
Post of the Month nominee!!!!!!

This has been noted.
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #85 on: October 28, 2008, 11:44:33 PM »
Post of the Month nominee!!!!!!

This has been noted.

Thank you Cleveland.  Ozgeorge's post sums up so much in one paragraph.  It is many arguments answered in a skillfully written post.  Thank you OzGeorge for the awesome post.

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #86 on: October 28, 2008, 11:50:53 PM »
^ Can I be co-nominated with ozgeorge since he quoted my post as reference?   :)

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #87 on: October 29, 2008, 01:31:43 AM »
Quote
I do not believe the priest meant to welcome me home to Russian culture.

Yet it is now part of your home.

If it were as you say, I think I would have been compelled to take a Slavic saint as my patron.  But at least we agree I am at home.  :)

All Saints of the Orthodox Church are saints in the Slavic tradition or any other Orthodox tradition. I don't where people get this idea that somehow their tradition defines the Church. Every Sunday we celebrate the Divine Liturgy together on the bones of the martyrs who have walked before us. Ours is a large community....it doesn't matter where you are in the world....we all commune from the same cup, no matter what language it is served in...together with all the saints, the Cherubim, Seraphim, other angels....
“Find the door of your heart, and you will discover it is the door to the kingdom of God.” - St. John Chrysostom

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #88 on: October 29, 2008, 04:59:23 AM »
^ Can I be co-nominated with ozgeorge since he quoted my post as reference?   :)

I will nominate you.
Your post was well written and researched.
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #89 on: October 29, 2008, 11:22:08 AM »
^ Thanks for the nomination and for including my post.   :)

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #90 on: October 29, 2008, 11:32:54 AM »
I think the notion of a "cultureless" Church is a pipe dream. The Church is flesh and blood, not some ethereal, unconnected ideal floating in mid space....

All Saints of the Orthodox Church are saints in the Slavic tradition or any other Orthodox tradition. I don't where people get this idea that somehow their tradition defines the Church....

The Church is flesh and blood and Spirit.

If the priest had welcomed me home to Russian culture, I have no doubt that I would be referred to by the name of a "proper" saint and struggling to learn Old Slavonic in order to follow the Liturgy.  As it happens, my patron is not from a culture one typically thinks of as Eastern Orthodox (yet he is Orthodox, consistent with what Ukiemeister says), and the Liturgy, save for a few terms, is in my native English.

If the Church were merely flesh and blood, I would agree with AMM.  I would not feel at home at my parish.  But because the Church is Spirit, as well, I am at home.  If the Church were merely flesh and blood, how could I call these strangers, with whom I share neither flesh nor blood, my brothers and sisters?  But because the Church is Spirit, as well, they are my brothers and sisters; we are sons and daughters of the same Father.

So, I agree, there is one Orthodox Tradition, and I am grateful for the Russian immigrants who brought it to my town.  I find I prefer the three-barred cross typically associated with Russian Orthodoxy, not because of where it came from, but because of what it means.

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #91 on: October 29, 2008, 11:40:35 AM »
Forgive me, but I still don't quite understand why we as converts with possibly Protestant or Evangelical roots, must entirely give up our "KJV Christianity", whilst the Russian peasants were permitted to cling (to the present day) to many of their pre-christian customs. Is paganism to be preferred to a godly heritage?  I thought one aspect of Orthodoxy was its ability to "baptise" any culture...including, I would think, a Protestant culture.

I guess I can't bring myself to say that everything about my Evangelical cultural exposure was bad. In fact, some aspects were to a certain degree, better than what I am encountering in Orthodoxy. I'm thankful to the Evangelicals for teaching me the importance of a sober, christian life and for their love and knowledge of the Scriptures. To a certain degree, I still agree with the emphasis on adult baptism.

Fortunately, for myself, it was relatively easy to accept many aspects of my borrowed, Russian, culture, because I've had a fair bit of exposure to that culture even as a child. For others who did not have this opportunity, it is much, much more difficult. However, to simply discount "KJV Christianity", well, I don't think that is fair. I think it is a godly culture.
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #92 on: October 29, 2008, 11:45:12 AM »
The KJV is valid Scripture ... until the Scripture is twisted to satisfy a particular agenda.

A Priest should not use Scripture to tell his flock that the current state of Orthodoxy is doomed to perish because that creates division in the Body of Christ, the Church.

Televangelists generally do not cite from the KJV, preferring the more "modern translations" like the NIV and others.

Even the Gospel read in Orthodox Churches uses the RSV rather than the NKJV or the KJV.

PS: Anyone know what happened to Fr. Peck assuming that the November 2008 Orthodox Observer is unlikely to publish his status?

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #93 on: October 29, 2008, 11:49:58 AM »
I've heard plenty of Orthodox priests (likely from more traditional jurisdictions of course) defending the KJV! And what is wrong with it? I grew up with the beautiful language of the Authorized Version, and deeply appreciate it to this day, although I do read other versions for study purposes.
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #94 on: October 29, 2008, 12:54:20 PM »
And what is wrong with it?
The KJV Old Testament is based on the Vulgate which is based on the Masoretic text.
When quoting the Scriptures, Christ quotes the Septuagint (e.g. Mark 7:11), the Apostles quote the Septuagint, the Fathers quote from the Septuagint, and we liturgically use the Septuagint only.
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #95 on: October 29, 2008, 01:01:30 PM »
Thank you, Ozgeorge. However, I still do not feel guilty about reading the AV.
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #96 on: October 29, 2008, 01:07:20 PM »
Thank you, Ozgeorge. However, I still do not feel guilty about reading the AV.

There's no need to feel guilty for reading it. It's a classic text. It's just not authorized for liturgical use in the Orthodox Church.
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #97 on: October 29, 2008, 01:21:43 PM »
Quote
Forgive me, but I still don't quite understand why we as converts with possibly Protestant or Evangelical roots, must entirely give up our "KJV Christianity", whilst the Russian peasants were permitted to cling (to the present day) to many of their pre-christian customs.

I don't think anyone is saying that, nor do I think you would find a priest or layperson (a sane anyway) who doesn't appreciate and welcome the addition of converts to the church.  I think the issue as presented in the OP is exactly the opposite though, the problem is the existing people in the church and the need to have a major round of ethnic cleansing in order to set things straight.  "We're converts, we're better, we know what to do, things will die and go down the toilet without us, blah, blah, blah".  Converts can be like consultants, and in this case the worst kind.


Vulgarity replaced  -PtA
« Last Edit: October 29, 2008, 10:29:16 PM by PeterTheAleut »

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #98 on: October 29, 2008, 01:42:53 PM »
Thank you, Ozgeorge. However, I still do not feel guilty about reading the AV.

There's no need to feel guilty for reading it. It's a classic text. It's just not authorized for liturgical use in the Orthodox Church.


Yes, because the NKJV is what is used. ::) What's used in your parish, ozgeorge or are all readings done in Greek?  I'm sure your priest/bishop must have some existing version for the non-greek speaking to read.

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #99 on: October 29, 2008, 01:51:10 PM »
Thank you, Ozgeorge. However, I still do not feel guilty about reading the AV.

There's no need to feel guilty for reading it. It's a classic text. It's just not authorized for liturgical use in the Orthodox Church.


Yes, because the NKJV is what is used. ::) What's used in your parish, ozgeorge or are all readings done in Greek?  I'm sure your priest/bishop must have some existing version for the non-greek speaking to read.

If I read OzGeorge's post correct he's not simply referring to the translation of the bible.  The words are merely the colors of the bigger picture he is painting.  The following arguments only build up what OzGeorge has said.  While certainly we can argue about which version of the bible is to be used we can not overlook the underlying meaning of the post. 
« Last Edit: October 29, 2008, 01:54:21 PM by username! »

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #100 on: October 29, 2008, 02:00:12 PM »
Whichever translation is least ethnic is the best one.

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #101 on: October 29, 2008, 02:01:29 PM »
Yes, because the NKJV is what is used. ::)

Not where I'm from, it isn't.  The OT translations used are unique and done from the Septuagint texts contained in the various books.  The NT might have the NKJV as a basis (I haven't checked), but it has been modified to align with the Greek text.
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #102 on: October 29, 2008, 02:02:07 PM »
Whichever translation is least ethnic is the best one.

"Least ethnic?"  Which ones are Ethnic to begin with?
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #103 on: October 29, 2008, 02:21:41 PM »
Whichever translation is least ethnic is the best one.

"Least ethnic?"  Which ones are Ethnic to begin with?

And I would have thought "the most Orthodox" would be the criterion to use....
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #104 on: October 29, 2008, 02:30:16 PM »
Yes, because the NKJV is what is used. ::) What's used in your parish, ozgeorge or are all readings done in Greek?  I'm sure your priest/bishop must have some existing version for the non-greek speaking to read.

Does the OCA use the NKJV for it's Liturgical Old Testament readings?
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #105 on: October 29, 2008, 02:32:26 PM »
Yes, because the NKJV is what is used. ::)

Not where I'm from, it isn't.  The OT translations used are unique and done from the Septuagint texts contained in the various books.  The NT might have the NKJV as a basis (I haven't checked), but it has been modified to align with the Greek text.

NT:  That's what I meant.

OT:  in English?  I haven't really paid attention to the book we use for OT readings (the gold bounding of the Gospels and Apostol rather set them apart), so I have no idea what we use or is authorized by the bishop/synod.  If in English, then were they used for the new OSB or do you have any idea why not?

Sorry ozgeorge, it seemed to me as if your didn't think any English version of the Bible was read in church.

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #106 on: October 29, 2008, 02:38:50 PM »
Sorry ozgeorge, it seemed to me as if your didn't think any English version of the Bible was read in church.

I thought I was pretty clear when I said
The KJV Old Testament is based on the Vulgate which is based on the Masoretic text.
When quoting the Scriptures, Christ quotes the Septuagint (e.g. Mark 7:11), the Apostles quote the Septuagint, the Fathers quote from the Septuagint, and we liturgically use the Septuagint only.
But may be I wasn't. Sorry.
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #107 on: October 29, 2008, 02:39:54 PM »
Whichever translation is least ethnic is the best one.

"Least ethnic?"  Which ones are Ethnic to begin with?

Whichever ones are used by the mendacious, phyletist hierarchy® who as studies have shown would lead the church in to utter ruin within 15 years if left unchecked.  Those ones.

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #108 on: October 29, 2008, 02:48:14 PM »
Whichever ones are used by the mendacious, phyletist hierarchy® who as studies have shown would lead the church in to utter ruin within 15 years if left unchecked.  Those ones.

How can "studies show" what will happen in the future? Numerical models? Well, we should also remember that a variation of those self same numerical models that the those who try to predict future trends rely on also predicted we would all get filthy rich just by passing bits of paper around and around amongst ourselves.
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #109 on: October 29, 2008, 03:29:34 PM »
Whichever ones are used by the mendacious, phyletist hierarchy® who as studies have shown would lead the church in to utter ruin within 15 years if left unchecked.  Those ones.

On the one hand, you're still being coy enough to not be clear.  In fact, I think the fact that you assert that phyletist hierarchy would use a translation of the Bible is laughable (unless we're talking about Pro-American-phyletists, who do indeed exist).

On the other hand, I don't think I really want to ask you to be more clear, as I have the feeling it will lead to some statement that is possibly libelous, or at least quite nasty.  So I'll leave it alone.
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #110 on: October 29, 2008, 03:33:10 PM »
How can "studies show" what will happen in the future? Numerical models?

I quote from the article.

"Statistical studies taken a mere seven years ago predicted that within 10 years the Orthodox Church in the United States would for all practical purposes, no longer be viable."

As you and I both know, statistics do not lie.

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #111 on: October 29, 2008, 05:13:55 PM »
Yes, because the NKJV is what is used. ::) What's used in your parish, ozgeorge or are all readings done in Greek?  I'm sure your priest/bishop must have some existing version for the non-greek speaking to read.

Does the OCA use the NKJV for it's Liturgical Old Testament readings?
Depends on the diocese/parish.  I know of only one English version of the Bible that is explicitly rejected for liturgical use in the OCA, and that is the NRSV.  I'm not sure every parish/diocese uses an English translation of the Septuagint for its OT readings, or has even had one available prior to the recent attempt to publish the Orthodox Study Bible as such a translation.  Most OCA parishes very probably make use of the best English versions available, even though most of them are derived in some way from the Authorized (King James) Version--the [old] RSV is, in fact, such a KJV derivative.
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #112 on: October 29, 2008, 05:19:37 PM »
As you and I both know, statistics do not lie.
"There are three kinds of lies:  lies, damned lies, and statistics."  -Samuel Clemens  ;D
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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #113 on: October 29, 2008, 05:39:37 PM »
Saw this on a sig line from someone on another board recently and liked it:

There are 10 types of people in the world:  those who understand binary and those who don't.

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #114 on: October 29, 2008, 05:42:15 PM »
Saw this on a sig line from someone on another board recently and liked it:

There are 10 types of people in the world:  those who understand binary and those who don't.
I love this!
"For, by its immensity, the divine substance surpasses every form that our intellect reaches. Thus we are unable to apprehend it by knowing what it is. Yet we are able to have some knowledge of it by knowing what it is not." - St. Thomas Aquinas, Summa contra gentiles, I, 14.

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #115 on: October 29, 2008, 06:21:49 PM »
On the one hand, you're still being coy enough to not be clear.  In fact, I think the fact that you assert that phyletist hierarchy would use a translation of the Bible is laughable (unless we're talking about Pro-American-phyletists, who do indeed exist).

On the other hand, I don't think I really want to ask you to be more clear, as I have the feeling it will lead to some statement that is possibly libelous, or at least quite nasty.  So I'll leave it alone.

I retract my previous statements; now that I'm more aware, the sarcasm of AMM's post is more evident.
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Offline ozgeorge

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #116 on: October 29, 2008, 07:10:16 PM »
How can "studies show" what will happen in the future? Numerical models?

I quote from the article.

"Statistical studies taken a mere seven years ago predicted that within 10 years the Orthodox Church in the United States would for all practical purposes, no longer be viable."

As you and I both know, statistics do not lie.

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« Last Edit: October 29, 2008, 07:10:45 PM by ozgeorge »
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Offline AMM

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #117 on: October 29, 2008, 07:52:43 PM »
I retract my previous statements

Why, you no longer believe the next things I would say would be libelous and nasty?

I'm offended!

Offline Fr. George

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Re: The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow
« Reply #118 on: October 29, 2008, 08:47:06 PM »
Why, you no longer believe the next things I would say would be libelous and nasty?

I'm offended!

I'm Rusty... Nice to meet you, Offended.
« Last Edit: October 29, 2008, 08:47:21 PM by cleveland »
How in Mor's good name
one hundred fifty four posts
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Selam