I would like to see all members' religious affiliation listed and kindly ask that all non-EO's refrain from posting in the first three sections of the moderated forums; Convert Issues, Faith Issues and Liturgy (I would like to see the Oriental Orthodox and Roman Catholics removed from Liturgy and relegated to their own sections (The OO's already have their own section and to be fair, the RC's should be given their own as well).
I'm afraid that you are under the misapprehension that this is specifically an Eastern Orthodox forum. That is not correct. This is simply an Orthodox forum, which does not take an explicit position on whether OO's, or EO's, or both, are Orthodox. The admins, moderators and posters may all have their own beliefs on the matter. However, there is not an official position taken by the board.
OCnet was founded six years ago by two Eastern Catholics (Fr. Anastasios and Robert) and an Oriental Orthodox (Mor Ephrem.) Over time, Mor Ephrem left and Fr. Anastasios and Robert converted to the EO Church. However, the above policy never changed. EO's and OO's are free to post everywhere on the board and to give their opinions equally, as long as they are polite.
If OCnet were to become an EO forum which just tolerated OO "guests," restricting what we could say, how we identified ourselves, or shoved us into some "Inquirer's Corner" ghetto, I have no doubt that OCnet would lose much, if not all, of its OO posters (including myself.) I've seen this happen to other Orthodox forums on the internet.
Of course I don't understand why the other forums felt the need to restrict the OO posters the way they have. I can only imagine that they were somehow threatened by what we have to say. As pointed out above, it can be nice to be able to mischaracterize the beliefs of others without fear of them being able to challenge you about it.
Fr. Anastasios is the sole owner of OCnet now, and I respect him tremendously for allowing such freedom of expression here. I know he is an Old Calendarist EO, and I have no illusions about what his opinion of my Church must be. However, he treats me and the other OO's here with much more courtesy than do many World Orthodox EO's whose patriarchs are on good terms with my catholicos. This, among other things, tells me that Fr. Anastasios is secure in his faith and is not at all threatened by what I or other OO's have to say, even though he doubtlessly disagrees with us. One wonders if the World Orthodox EO's who own the other sites have a faith in their Church as strong as Fr. Anastasios'. The restrictions they put on the OO's makes me believe they don't, but I could be wrong.
I'm trying to understand where you are coming from, Gabriel. Can you give me an example of a thread about a specifically EO issue where the OO's have butted in and ruined things?
I and other OO's have stayed out of the many EP vs. MP threads where the EO's here viciously rip into each other's patriarchs. We've stayed out of the threads where the Antiochians have aired their Church's dirtly laundry. We made a point of staying out of this horrible thread about Christology, which had to be put into the private forum:http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,19081.0.html
We could have gotten involved in that one. We could have come in and started playing a game of "Name That Heresy," and could have been very uncharitable toward the EO's participating there. However, we didn't. We chose, rather, to stay out of it and just watch in horror.
And now you want us to stay out of the Convert, Faith, and Liturgy sections. I guess I just want to know why. Is it that we don't have converts, faith, or liturgy? Is what we have to say about those topics completely outside of the Orthodox faith? I noticed that in a recent thread about homosexuality in the Faith section, you asked an Ethiopian poster to state his affiliation:http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,24174.msg371521.html#msg371521
Was what he had to say there that offensive to our EO members? I'll bet that his opinion in that thread is more in line with traditional EO beliefs on the topic than the opinions expressed by some of our EO posters. Perhaps you think that homosexuality is a purely EO issue and that there are no gay OO's? (OK, my mother would probably tell you there are no gay Armenians, but believe me when I say they exist.)
I guess I just want an example of a thread on an exclusively EO issue where an OO came in and ruined things. If you could provide an example, I think that would help tremendously.