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Author Topic: Mass Migrations to Orthodoxy?  (Read 4057 times) Average Rating: 0
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88Devin12
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« on: February 25, 2010, 01:12:37 PM »

Yesterday, Archpriest Chad Hatfield visited our Parish and co-served the Presanctified Liturgy with our Priest. He spoke with us after the service at dinner about St. Vladimir's Seminary and answered many of our questions.

I'd been aware of several mass-migrations to Orthodoxy such as the Evangelical Orthodox Church in the 1970s (or was it 80s?), as well as other instances of many individual parishes from groups like the Anglicans that have entered the church en-masse.

However Fr. Chad Hatfield informed us that there are multiple groups out there looking to enter the Church. Specifically he mentioned a group of about 40,000-70,000 in Guatemala that are looking to convert. Our Priest (and Fr. Chad) also mentioned a group of hundreds to thousands who want to enter the Orthodox Church in the Midwest.

We also know of the ACNA and other Anglican groups who eventually could be interested in joining the Orthodox Church. (hopefully fulfilling the statement by St. Tikhon)

I was just wondering, are there many recent examples of groups like this coming to join the Orthodox Church?
« Last Edit: February 25, 2010, 01:17:03 PM by 88Devin12 » Logged
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« Reply #1 on: February 25, 2010, 02:05:32 PM »

The Mexican Exarchate of the OCA was largely formed by mass conversions from the Mexican National Catholic Church. If the Central American prospects pan out, the OCA could be majority Native American.
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« Reply #2 on: February 25, 2010, 02:35:07 PM »

These groups don't always stay, e.g. ECOF in France.
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« Reply #3 on: February 25, 2010, 02:58:30 PM »

These groups don't always stay, e.g. ECOF in France.


I think it just depends on how we act and how we treat them. If they come into the Church with fanfare, then are relatively ignored, then they will probably leave.
We can't just say "oh it's typical for large groups like this to fall away eventually". It isn't entirely on them, we really need to look at ourselves, how we act, and how we treat others.

Example, why are ethnic parishes dying? They are closed off to others, even if people do join their Church, they are either melded into the ethnocentrism, or they leave because of how exclusive the Church is. This is why so many new, younger and non-ethnic parishes are thriving. They don't just ignore a demographic because they are or aren't ethnic.

Especially after hearing from Fr. Chad Hatfield, I feel that the OCA is not looking to make the mistakes others have made in the past. I feel like we won't just ignore a group after they enter the Church. In fact, one could argue this is how the OCA is being treated at the moment, we are the new kids on the block, and are not looked upon as favorably by some. Yet I think this makes us stronger.

Hopefully these groups will stay, and I have faith that they will. Not because we are any better than other jurisdictions, but because hopefully we will be Christians to these people and not an exclusive cult.
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88Devin12
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« Reply #4 on: February 25, 2010, 03:02:10 PM »

The Mexican Exarchate of the OCA was largely formed by mass conversions from the Mexican National Catholic Church. If the Central American prospects pan out, the OCA could be majority Native American.
Then more power to us. It isn't about race or ethnicity, but about souls... (I'm sure everyone here would agree with this) Whether we are majority Native America, majority Russian, majority Greek, majority Arabian etc... Doesn't matter, we are Orthodox, we are all the same. In the end, it's our souls that will be in control, not our flesh. God doesn't judge us on what our skin color or racial makeup is, but on how good of a Christian we are.

It isn't about 40,000-70,000 Guatemalans, but about 40,000-70,000 souls coming into the Church, who are welcome no matter what their fleshly appearance is.
« Last Edit: February 25, 2010, 03:05:01 PM by 88Devin12 » Logged
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« Reply #5 on: February 25, 2010, 03:15:22 PM »

These groups don't always stay, e.g. ECOF in France.


I think it just depends on how we act and how we treat them.

Sometimes people who convert en masse are looking to maintain an identity they subsequently find isn't compatible with what they've converted to.

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« Reply #6 on: February 25, 2010, 03:49:58 PM »

Mass conversions much more reliable to last when the church had the secular authorities at their disposal to actually ensure that the union will last.
These groups don't always stay, e.g. ECOF in France.


I think it just depends on how we act and how we treat them. If they come into the Church with fanfare, then are relatively ignored, then they will probably leave.
We can't just say "oh it's typical for large groups like this to fall away eventually". It isn't entirely on them, we really need to look at ourselves, how we act, and how we treat others.

Example, why are ethnic parishes dying? They are closed off to others, even if people do join their Church, they are either melded into the ethnocentrism, or they leave because of how exclusive the Church is. This is why so many new, younger and non-ethnic parishes are thriving. They don't just ignore a demographic because they are or aren't ethnic.

Especially after hearing from Fr. Chad Hatfield, I feel that the OCA is not looking to make the mistakes others have made in the past. I feel like we won't just ignore a group after they enter the Church. In fact, one could argue this is how the OCA is being treated at the moment, we are the new kids on the block, and are not looked upon as favorably by some. Yet I think this makes us stronger.

Hopefully these groups will stay, and I have faith that they will. Not because we are any better than other jurisdictions, but because hopefully we will be Christians to these people and not an exclusive cult.
To tell you the truth I don't see any of the Greek or Serbian  etc parishes around here dying any time soon. Besides they are larger and more people attend on a Sunday morning than all of the "thriving young parishes" you talk about.
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88Devin12
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« Reply #7 on: February 25, 2010, 04:30:23 PM »

Mass conversions much more reliable to last when the church had the secular authorities at their disposal to actually ensure that the union will last.
These groups don't always stay, e.g. ECOF in France.


I think it just depends on how we act and how we treat them. If they come into the Church with fanfare, then are relatively ignored, then they will probably leave.
We can't just say "oh it's typical for large groups like this to fall away eventually". It isn't entirely on them, we really need to look at ourselves, how we act, and how we treat others.

Example, why are ethnic parishes dying? They are closed off to others, even if people do join their Church, they are either melded into the ethnocentrism, or they leave because of how exclusive the Church is. This is why so many new, younger and non-ethnic parishes are thriving. They don't just ignore a demographic because they are or aren't ethnic.

Especially after hearing from Fr. Chad Hatfield, I feel that the OCA is not looking to make the mistakes others have made in the past. I feel like we won't just ignore a group after they enter the Church. In fact, one could argue this is how the OCA is being treated at the moment, we are the new kids on the block, and are not looked upon as favorably by some. Yet I think this makes us stronger.

Hopefully these groups will stay, and I have faith that they will. Not because we are any better than other jurisdictions, but because hopefully we will be Christians to these people and not an exclusive cult.
To tell you the truth I don't see any of the Greek or Serbian  etc parishes around here dying any time soon. Besides they are larger and more people attend on a Sunday morning than all of the "thriving young parishes" you talk about.

I'm not talking about just any OCA, GOA, Antiochian parishes. I'm talking about the ones that are equivalent to ethnic ghettoes. There are plenty of stories of these churches dying off.

Example, Holy Trinity in Overland Park, KS is a large parish. It has a pretty good number of converts as well as cradle Orthodox, and from what I can tell, it's been growing; it is far from an ethnic ghetto. Same for other Churches in the Kansas City area. I haven't heard many bad things about any of the Churches there.
However from what I've heard, decades ago some Churches used to be ethnic enclaves which weren't friendly to outsiders, and those churches either started dying, or started splitting. Now from what I've heard, most of them are pretty open and welcoming, and they are growing.

At our Church, it's certainly no ethnic enclave, and although we aren't huge, we still have something like 200 members or so, with 40-60 every Sunday, and we've been receiving new catechumens regularly over the past several years.

I heard a story yesterday about a parish that was so ethnic, it wouldn't even let people from the same continent join their church, it was exclusively of the ethnicity of their specific home country. They started dying and it was almost dead, then they had a change of heart and they are letting people in and are growing and is becoming a much healthier parish for it.

However augustin, I don't think we disagree on this. I'm sure everyone here would agree that the church that is an ethnic ghetto is both unhealthy and unorthodox; not to mention it's also doomed.
« Last Edit: February 25, 2010, 04:34:50 PM by 88Devin12 » Logged
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« Reply #8 on: February 25, 2010, 04:34:40 PM »

Mass conversions much more reliable to last when the church had the secular authorities at their disposal to actually ensure that the union will last.
These groups don't always stay, e.g. ECOF in France.


I think it just depends on how we act and how we treat them. If they come into the Church with fanfare, then are relatively ignored, then they will probably leave.
We can't just say "oh it's typical for large groups like this to fall away eventually". It isn't entirely on them, we really need to look at ourselves, how we act, and how we treat others.

Example, why are ethnic parishes dying? They are closed off to others, even if people do join their Church, they are either melded into the ethnocentrism, or they leave because of how exclusive the Church is. This is why so many new, younger and non-ethnic parishes are thriving. They don't just ignore a demographic because they are or aren't ethnic.

Especially after hearing from Fr. Chad Hatfield, I feel that the OCA is not looking to make the mistakes others have made in the past. I feel like we won't just ignore a group after they enter the Church. In fact, one could argue this is how the OCA is being treated at the moment, we are the new kids on the block, and are not looked upon as favorably by some. Yet I think this makes us stronger.

Hopefully these groups will stay, and I have faith that they will. Not because we are any better than other jurisdictions, but because hopefully we will be Christians to these people and not an exclusive cult.
To tell you the truth I don't see any of the Greek or Serbian  etc parishes around here dying any time soon. Besides they are larger and more people attend on a Sunday morning than all of the "thriving young parishes" you talk about.

This old debate between the "anti-ethnic" versus the "ethnic" adherents within our Church is tiresome. I truly believe that there is room in American Orthodoxy for both points of view.The use of the term ' ethnocentrism' is offensive to many of us from old line parishes. Yes, we respect the traditions of our founders with their chants, Paschal customs, wedding customs to some degree and food, but I can assure you that we are a Christ Centered house of worship.  I can also assure you that if you "ethnically cleansed" my parish and made it culturally neutral, rather than see an explosion in growth, you would alienate those who have spent generations nurturing and growing the faith. Likewise, if I presumed to make your parish 'ethnic', be it Hellenistic, Ukrainian, Serb or whatever, such actions would  probably chase away your congregation.  The predecessors of those who now are the OCA, were not the 'new kids on the block' but were those hard-working and earnest pioneer priests and bishops who helped bring the Church to these shores, like Greeks, Syrians, Ukrainians, Serbs and all of us. True Orthodox unity in the US will only come from the flowering of diversity in the reflection of the unity and universality and true teachings of the Church - not by words or by force.
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« Reply #9 on: February 25, 2010, 04:35:29 PM »

Being Romanian myself, I sometimes find all-English /mostly convert/mostly white churches to be quite ethnic and off-putting to me. I've heard a few other Eastern European friends say the same.
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« Reply #10 on: February 25, 2010, 04:46:01 PM »

Mass conversions much more reliable to last when the church had the secular authorities at their disposal to actually ensure that the union will last.
These groups don't always stay, e.g. ECOF in France.


I think it just depends on how we act and how we treat them. If they come into the Church with fanfare, then are relatively ignored, then they will probably leave.
We can't just say "oh it's typical for large groups like this to fall away eventually". It isn't entirely on them, we really need to look at ourselves, how we act, and how we treat others.

Example, why are ethnic parishes dying? They are closed off to others, even if people do join their Church, they are either melded into the ethnocentrism, or they leave because of how exclusive the Church is. This is why so many new, younger and non-ethnic parishes are thriving. They don't just ignore a demographic because they are or aren't ethnic.

Especially after hearing from Fr. Chad Hatfield, I feel that the OCA is not looking to make the mistakes others have made in the past. I feel like we won't just ignore a group after they enter the Church. In fact, one could argue this is how the OCA is being treated at the moment, we are the new kids on the block, and are not looked upon as favorably by some. Yet I think this makes us stronger.

Hopefully these groups will stay, and I have faith that they will. Not because we are any better than other jurisdictions, but because hopefully we will be Christians to these people and not an exclusive cult.
To tell you the truth I don't see any of the Greek or Serbian  etc parishes around here dying any time soon. Besides they are larger and more people attend on a Sunday morning than all of the "thriving young parishes" you talk about.

This old debate between the "anti-ethnic" versus the "ethnic" adherents within our Church is tiresome. I truly believe that there is room in American Orthodoxy for both points of view.The use of the term ' ethnocentrism' is offensive to many of us from old line parishes. Yes, we respect the traditions of our founders with their chants, Paschal customs, wedding customs to some degree and food, but I can assure you that we are a Christ Centered house of worship.  I can also assure you that if you "ethnically cleansed" my parish and made it culturally neutral, rather than see an explosion in growth, you would alienate those who have spent generations nurturing and growing the faith. Likewise, if I presumed to make your parish 'ethnic', be it Hellenistic, Ukrainian, Serb or whatever, such actions would  probably chase away your congregation.  The predecessors of those who now are the OCA, were not the 'new kids on the block' but were those hard-working and earnest pioneer priests and bishops who helped bring the Church to these shores, like Greeks, Syrians, Ukrainians, Serbs and all of us. True Orthodox unity in the US will only come from the flowering of diversity in the reflection of the unity and universality and true teachings of the Church - not by words or by force.

I don't think I was arguing against those parishes. I think it's simply a misunderstanding between us. We aren't against any ethnic/cultural diversity. Heck, our parish has a Greek Festival every year to draw people to the Church. We are Orthodox, and we should celebrate the cultures of our brothers & sisters.
Ethnocentrism only arises when someone excludes others from their group based on ethnicity. There is a big difference between a Church that is willing to have cultural diversity and one that isn't.
It isn't about whether a Church is Greek, American, Russian or culturally "neutral", it's about how that Parish receives outsiders and newcomers. Any church that remains exclusive because it wishes to retain it's ethnic identity is in the wrong. It's okay to celebrate your culture and your ethnicity, but it should not get in the way between you and the people that are different from you.

It isn't about being ethnically neutral, it's about including others into your Parish regardless of ethnicity. I'm not saying that if you perform Byzantine Chant in Greek that you should change if non-Greeks start coming. However, they should be allowed to come and feel welcome no matter their ethnicity.

Being Romanian myself, I sometimes find all-English /mostly convert/mostly white churches to be quite ethnic and off-putting to me. I've heard a few other Eastern European friends say the same.
Then those parishes are equally ethnocentric. As I said, we should not let a difference in ethnicity or culture get in the way of being brothers and sisters in Christ. There is no room for exclusivity within Christ's Church.

For instance, if I go to a Serbian Church (just for example, not making a point) then they should make me feel welcome, then if they came to my Church, then they should get the same treatment.

It isn't about us vs. them, but us and them. We are in this together. A liturgy celebrated in Greek or Slavonic is the same as one celebrated in English. The language and culture doesn't matter, it's the people that matter. I'm doing the same thing whether I attend a Greek or Russian Church or whether I attend an American Church. It's all the same.

In our Parish, we celebrate all services in English. But our Priest recognized that many of the Eastern European parishioners may not understand English that well, so he made arrangements to have Russian/Slavic liturgical books (and other books for the library) to be available. We have to be accommodating to others. That doesn't mean changing everything in our Church, but it just means we have to be mindful of others around us. It's not about the individual but the community.
_______________

I don't really understand what this conversation is about, because we are all agreeing on the same thing. There isn't really a disagreement.
« Last Edit: February 25, 2010, 05:00:45 PM by 88Devin12 » Logged
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« Reply #11 on: February 25, 2010, 05:03:36 PM »

Mass conversions much more reliable to last when the church had the secular authorities at their disposal to actually ensure that the union will last.
These groups don't always stay, e.g. ECOF in France.


I think it just depends on how we act and how we treat them. If they come into the Church with fanfare, then are relatively ignored, then they will probably leave.
We can't just say "oh it's typical for large groups like this to fall away eventually". It isn't entirely on them, we really need to look at ourselves, how we act, and how we treat others.

Example, why are ethnic parishes dying? They are closed off to others, even if people do join their Church, they are either melded into the ethnocentrism, or they leave because of how exclusive the Church is. This is why so many new, younger and non-ethnic parishes are thriving. They don't just ignore a demographic because they are or aren't ethnic.

Especially after hearing from Fr. Chad Hatfield, I feel that the OCA is not looking to make the mistakes others have made in the past. I feel like we won't just ignore a group after they enter the Church. In fact, one could argue this is how the OCA is being treated at the moment, we are the new kids on the block, and are not looked upon as favorably by some. Yet I think this makes us stronger.

Hopefully these groups will stay, and I have faith that they will. Not because we are any better than other jurisdictions, but because hopefully we will be Christians to these people and not an exclusive cult.
To tell you the truth I don't see any of the Greek or Serbian  etc parishes around here
Where's "here?"
Quote
dying any time soon. Besides they are larger and more people attend on a Sunday morning than all of the "thriving young parishes" you talk about.
How many second generation?  Third?
Being Romanian myself, I sometimes find all-English /mostly convert/mostly white churches to be quite ethnic and off-putting to me. I've heard a few other Eastern European friends say the same.
Are you in Eastern Europe?
« Last Edit: February 25, 2010, 05:04:43 PM by ialmisry » Logged

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« Reply #12 on: February 25, 2010, 05:45:15 PM »

Mass conversions much more reliable to last when the church had the secular authorities at their disposal to actually ensure that the union will last.
These groups don't always stay, e.g. ECOF in France.


I think it just depends on how we act and how we treat them. If they come into the Church with fanfare, then are relatively ignored, then they will probably leave.
We can't just say "oh it's typical for large groups like this to fall away eventually". It isn't entirely on them, we really need to look at ourselves, how we act, and how we treat others.

Example, why are ethnic parishes dying? They are closed off to others, even if people do join their Church, they are either melded into the ethnocentrism, or they leave because of how exclusive the Church is. This is why so many new, younger and non-ethnic parishes are thriving. They don't just ignore a demographic because they are or aren't ethnic.

Especially after hearing from Fr. Chad Hatfield, I feel that the OCA is not looking to make the mistakes others have made in the past. I feel like we won't just ignore a group after they enter the Church. In fact, one could argue this is how the OCA is being treated at the moment, we are the new kids on the block, and are not looked upon as favorably by some. Yet I think this makes us stronger.

Hopefully these groups will stay, and I have faith that they will. Not because we are any better than other jurisdictions, but because hopefully we will be Christians to these people and not an exclusive cult.
To tell you the truth I don't see any of the Greek or Serbian  etc parishes around here dying any time soon. Besides they are larger and more people attend on a Sunday morning than all of the "thriving young parishes" you talk about.

This old debate between the "anti-ethnic" versus the "ethnic" adherents within our Church is tiresome. I truly believe that there is room in American Orthodoxy for both points of view.The use of the term ' ethnocentrism' is offensive to many of us from old line parishes. Yes, we respect the traditions of our founders with their chants, Paschal customs, wedding customs to some degree and food, but I can assure you that we are a Christ Centered house of worship.  I can also assure you that if you "ethnically cleansed" my parish and made it culturally neutral, rather than see an explosion in growth, you would alienate those who have spent generations nurturing and growing the faith. Likewise, if I presumed to make your parish 'ethnic', be it Hellenistic, Ukrainian, Serb or whatever, such actions would  probably chase away your congregation.  The predecessors of those who now are the OCA, were not the 'new kids on the block' but were those hard-working and earnest pioneer priests and bishops who helped bring the Church to these shores, like Greeks, Syrians, Ukrainians, Serbs and all of us. True Orthodox unity in the US will only come from the flowering of diversity in the reflection of the unity and universality and true teachings of the Church - not by words or by force.

I don't think I was arguing against those parishes. I think it's simply a misunderstanding between us. We aren't against any ethnic/cultural diversity. Heck, our parish has a Greek Festival every year to draw people to the Church. We are Orthodox, and we should celebrate the cultures of our brothers & sisters.
Ethnocentrism only arises when someone excludes others from their group based on ethnicity. There is a big difference between a Church that is willing to have cultural diversity and one that isn't.
It isn't about whether a Church is Greek, American, Russian or culturally "neutral", it's about how that Parish receives outsiders and newcomers. Any church that remains exclusive because it wishes to retain it's ethnic identity is in the wrong. It's okay to celebrate your culture and your ethnicity, but it should not get in the way between you and the people that are different from you.

It isn't about being ethnically neutral, it's about including others into your Parish regardless of ethnicity. I'm not saying that if you perform Byzantine Chant in Greek that you should change if non-Greeks start coming. However, they should be allowed to come and feel welcome no matter their ethnicity.

Being Romanian myself, I sometimes find all-English /mostly convert/mostly white churches to be quite ethnic and off-putting to me. I've heard a few other Eastern European friends say the same.
Then those parishes are equally ethnocentric. As I said, we should not let a difference in ethnicity or culture get in the way of being brothers and sisters in Christ. There is no room for exclusivity within Christ's Church.

For instance, if I go to a Serbian Church (just for example, not making a point) then they should make me feel welcome, then if they came to my Church, then they should get the same treatment.

It isn't about us vs. them, but us and them. We are in this together. A liturgy celebrated in Greek or Slavonic is the same as one celebrated in English. The language and culture doesn't matter, it's the people that matter. I'm doing the same thing whether I attend a Greek or Russian Church or whether I attend an American Church. It's all the same.

In our Parish, we celebrate all services in English. But our Priest recognized that many of the Eastern European parishioners may not understand English that well, so he made arrangements to have Russian/Slavic liturgical books (and other books for the library) to be available. We have to be accommodating to others. That doesn't mean changing everything in our Church, but it just means we have to be mindful of others around us. It's not about the individual but the community.
_______________

I don't really understand what this conversation is about, because we are all agreeing on the same thing. There isn't really a disagreement.

Thank you, your sentiments align with mine after all!  We have been an (allmost) all English parish for many years and we have been blessed to receive new members from all denominations and races. I guess that I have heard over the years comments about the hard nosed ethnic parish that is cold and unwelcoming to newcomers. Some of those tales are, I suspect, in the category of 'urban legend'; some are true and some come from the heart of the person seeking to join the community - not from the heart of the community itself. It goes both ways. We all are charged to work together and to work harder so that all who truly seek salvation through Orthodoxy are welcome in our midst.
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« Reply #13 on: February 25, 2010, 07:22:15 PM »

Quote
Are you in Eastern Europe?
No. I'm in America, currently.
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« Reply #14 on: February 25, 2010, 07:54:40 PM »

Hello

Actually the Guatemalan group you probably refer to, wanted (or wants) to be received in the Coptic Orthodox Church. They were currently in talks with the Coptic priest in Mexico, the Coptic Church was evaluating how they would be received (in case this was accepted).

I don't know what happened then but as far as I know they had no intention to join the Eastern Orthodox Church for several reasons (one of them the EOC being less open to other peoples than the Copts given the fact that the Copts brought Christianity to the indigenous people in Ethiopia, etc.).

I frankly see the Copts to be more mission oriented than the EOC jurisdictions. However I see they're very careful of not engaging in what could be seen as proselitysm.
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« Reply #15 on: February 25, 2010, 08:42:01 PM »

These groups don't always stay, e.g. ECOF in France.


I think it just depends on how we act and how we treat them. If they come into the Church with fanfare, then are relatively ignored, then they will probably leave.
We can't just say "oh it's typical for large groups like this to fall away eventually". It isn't entirely on them, we really need to look at ourselves, how we act, and how we treat others.

Example, why are ethnic parishes dying? They are closed off to others, even if people do join their Church, they are either melded into the ethnocentrism, or they leave because of how exclusive the Church is. This is why so many new, younger and non-ethnic parishes are thriving. They don't just ignore a demographic because they are or aren't ethnic.

Especially after hearing from Fr. Chad Hatfield, I feel that the OCA is not looking to make the mistakes others have made in the past. I feel like we won't just ignore a group after they enter the Church. In fact, one could argue this is how the OCA is being treated at the moment, we are the new kids on the block, and are not looked upon as favorably by some. Yet I think this makes us stronger.

Hopefully these groups will stay, and I have faith that they will. Not because we are any better than other jurisdictions, but because hopefully we will be Christians to these people and not an exclusive cult.



I agree
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« Reply #16 on: February 25, 2010, 08:43:21 PM »

I don't know what happened then but as far as I know they had no intention to join the Eastern Orthodox Church for several reasons (one of them the EOC being less open to other peoples than the Copts given the fact that the Copts brought Christianity to the indigenous people in Ethiopia, etc.).

Well, there was an interview this year with a Guatemalan Orthodox nun who specifically said that a large group of Guatemalans wanted to join the Russian Church. http://www.pravoslavie.ru/english/31235.htm

As for the EOC being "less open to other peoples than the Copts", that's pretty absurd. Christianity was established in Ethiopia in the 4th century. If you want to talk about recent history, the Copts haven't done much missionary work at all compared to the EOC.



Quote
I frankly see the Copts to be more mission oriented than the EOC jurisdictions. However I see they're very careful of not engaging in what could be seen as proselitysm.

Huh? Proselytism = mission.
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« Reply #17 on: February 25, 2010, 08:57:19 PM »

Hello
Actually the Guatemalan group you probably refer to, wanted (or wants) to be received in the Coptic Orthodox Church. They were currently in talks with the Coptic priest in Mexico, the Coptic Church was evaluating how they would be received (in case this was accepted).

I don't know what happened then but as far as I know they had no intention to join the Eastern Orthodox Church for several reasons (one of them the EOC being less open to other peoples than the Copts given the fact that the Copts brought Christianity to the indigenous people in Ethiopia, etc.).

I frankly see the Copts to be more mission oriented than the EOC jurisdictions. However I see they're very careful of not engaging in what could be seen as proselitysm.
I could be wrong but I think they contacted the OCA as well. Last year I heard Metrapolitan Jonah talk about a group of 50,000 from South America that contacted them. You can find it on Ancientfaith radio.

He mentioned several things about it. Including the need to have people learn the language so that they can bring them in.

http://ancientfaith.com/specials/orthodox_conference_on_missions_and_evangelism_2009/met_jonah_on_unity_chambesy_and_the_gospel_-_q_a (Met Jonah on Unity, Chambesy, and the Gospel - Q & A)

This may be the wrong link because it's been months since I last heard it. But it's on one of them.



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« Reply #18 on: February 25, 2010, 09:09:49 PM »

I don't know what happened then but as far as I know they had no intention to join the Eastern Orthodox Church for several reasons (one of them the EOC being less open to other peoples than the Copts given the fact that the Copts brought Christianity to the indigenous people in Ethiopia, etc.).

Well, there was an interview this year with a Guatemalan Orthodox nun who specifically said that a large group of Guatemalans wanted to join the Russian Church. http://www.pravoslavie.ru/english/31235.htm

As for the EOC being "less open to other peoples than the Copts", that's pretty absurd. Christianity was established in Ethiopia in the 4th century. If you want to talk about recent history, the Copts haven't done much missionary work at all compared to the EOC.

The Copts have not been in the position as the EO to do missions.  But they have: they have had a number of missions throughout Africa, and the British Orthodox Church and in France IIRC, in addition to their diaspora.

Btw, their are many who go down for the Orthodox convent and orphanage in Guatamala from the States.



[/quote]



Quote
I frankly see the Copts to be more mission oriented than the EOC jurisdictions. However I see they're very careful of not engaging in what could be seen as proselitysm.

Huh? Proselytism = mission.
[/quote]
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« Reply #19 on: February 25, 2010, 09:28:31 PM »

Yes, it was a group of nuns that contacted Fr. Chad Hatfield, and the OCA has been sending missionaries and others down to Guatemala for the past year or so, the OCA is currently planning on increase their efforts.
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« Reply #20 on: February 26, 2010, 04:05:12 PM »

Being Romanian myself, I sometimes find all-English /mostly convert/mostly white churches to be quite ethnic and off-putting to me. I've heard a few other Eastern European friends say the same.
I'm currently attending  an all-English and multi-racial OCA parish. It's the furthest thing from an ethnic parish that I've seen.

And if you showed up, you'd find several Romanian (and Bulgarian, Serb, Ukrainian, etc.) families who've been there for years.
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« Reply #21 on: February 26, 2010, 04:06:37 PM »

Yes, it was a group of nuns that contacted Fr. Chad Hatfield, and the OCA has been sending missionaries and others down to Guatemala for the past year or so, the OCA is currently planning on increase their efforts.
Bishop Benjamin (OCA) recently visited our parish after a visit to Guatemala. He was clearly moved by the faith of the people that he'd met there.
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« Reply #22 on: February 26, 2010, 05:02:34 PM »

This is just my opinion so don't get upset because this:

How does the Russian Orthodox Church feel about having Catholic missionaries on their homeland? And isn't Latin America predominantly Roman Catholic? So I see this as a double standard. It seems to me as if the attitude maintained is," keep your missionaries out of our turf but we'll go onto yours".


That's how I see it, and it's just my opinion.
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« Reply #23 on: February 26, 2010, 05:08:46 PM »

This is just my opinion so don't get upset because this:

How does the Russian Orthodox Church feel about having Catholic missionaries on their homeland? And isn't Latin America predominantly Roman Catholic? So I see this as a double standard. It seems to me as if the attitude maintained is," keep your missionaries out of our turf but we'll go onto yours".

I don't see anything wrong with this "double standard"- it's a bias for truth against heresy. I'd say the same thing when people compare Western Rite Orthodoxy with Uniatism. 
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« Reply #24 on: February 26, 2010, 05:12:42 PM »

This is just my opinion so don't get upset because this:

How does the Russian Orthodox Church feel about having Catholic missionaries on their homeland? And isn't Latin America predominantly Roman Catholic? So I see this as a double standard. It seems to me as if the attitude maintained is," keep your missionaries out of our turf but we'll go onto yours".


That's how I see it, and it's just my opinion.
This is the consequence of both a fragmented Christianity and relativism. They ("they" being anyone) play the relativism card whenever ecumenism pops up and then play the OHCA* Church card whenever sheep stealing--excuse me--evangelism pops up.




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« Reply #25 on: February 26, 2010, 05:30:49 PM »

To be truthful, as a Latin American I'm very sure that the number 50,000 is quite exagerated, I doubt any uncanonical or break-away group from the RC would have such a large following.

I think this is the group which attempted union with the Coptic Church:

http://ortodoxoshispanos.galeon.com/album2046160.html

There's also another Guatemalan organization, coming from the line of Aftimios Ofiesh and Ignatius Nichols offering the "Rite of the Americas" which mixes Orthodox and Novus Ordo elements:

http://iglesiaortodoxalatina.org/

It's my personal belief that these groups must have at most 500 commited followers each of them (not counting those who ocassionally attend a service or receive a mission priest from the group and who are most likely not instructed in the Orthodox faith at all).

You know this is the problem when obscure groups want to be received into Orthodoxy and one of the reasons why this kind of mass reunions have not taken place very often (at least in Latin America).
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« Reply #26 on: February 26, 2010, 06:05:13 PM »

You know this is the problem when obscure groups want to be received into Orthodoxy and one of the reasons why this kind of mass reunions have not taken place very often (at least in Latin America).

I think that these groups are often poor candidates because usually their breaking away is a sign of obstinacy.  They don't like to submit to authority.  Sometimes this is about Truth, but so often it seems to be about political/cultural autonomy from the powers that be.  The Melkite schism comes to mind...
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« Reply #27 on: February 26, 2010, 06:25:04 PM »

I don't see anything wrong with this "double standard"- it's a bias for truth against heresy
Its all relative; you rightly feel that you have the fullness of truth and so do others that don't confess the same faith as yours. I am sure the Baptist missionaries in Russia feel the same way
Quote
. I'd say the same thing when people compare Western Rite Orthodoxy with Uniatism.  
That's not a good comparision. The Western Rite was created for those converts coming from a Western Tradition.
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« Reply #28 on: February 26, 2010, 07:10:38 PM »

This is just my opinion so don't get upset because this:

How does the Russian Orthodox Church feel about having Catholic missionaries on their homeland? And isn't Latin America predominantly Roman Catholic? So I see this as a double standard. It seems to me as if the attitude maintained is," keep your missionaries out of our turf but we'll go onto yours".


That's how I see it, and it's just my opinion.
The Vatican used the force of arms.  The Russian Orthodox Church did not.
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« Reply #29 on: February 26, 2010, 07:58:50 PM »

This is just my opinion so don't get upset because this:

How does the Russian Orthodox Church feel about having Catholic missionaries on their homeland? And isn't Latin America predominantly Roman Catholic? So I see this as a double standard. It seems to me as if the attitude maintained is," keep your missionaries out of our turf but we'll go onto yours".


That's how I see it, and it's just my opinion.
The Vatican used the force of arms.  The Russian Orthodox Church did not.
So the Catholic missionaries went into Russia through military force? When did this happen? And why can't you say 'Roman CAtholic Church' instead of saying 'The Vatican'? Just curious.
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« Reply #30 on: February 26, 2010, 08:23:51 PM »

This is just my opinion so don't get upset because this:

How does the Russian Orthodox Church feel about having Catholic missionaries on their homeland? And isn't Latin America predominantly Roman Catholic? So I see this as a double standard. It seems to me as if the attitude maintained is," keep your missionaries out of our turf but we'll go onto yours".


That's how I see it, and it's just my opinion.
The Vatican used the force of arms.  The Russian Orthodox Church did not.
So the Catholic missionaries went into Russia through military force? When did this happen?
We have discussed some of this before:
I stopped watching before it was halfway done.  I find it to be typical Western propaganda rooted in strict opposition to Orthodoxy. After hearing repeatedly of the Orthodox Church and Patriarch ALEXY II of blessed memory being collaborators with the communist despite NO proof of that, it was assumed that such was the case.

Now, I will certainly grant that Russia is not  a free democratic society.  But the Christianity of Russia has always been Orthodox. It is the Russian Orthodox's Church responsibility and only her responsibility to minister to the spiritual needs of the people. 

Benedict XVI will say one thing with his mouth and do another thing.  He should do the right thing and disband the dioceses.  Creating more dioceses will only create more tension.  If the Russian catholics love their catholicism that much, they can move.  Russia is Orthodox.
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Well, I wouldn't go that far, I like that the bishops have to work for their flock. But yeah, all about Nazi invasions but nothing about the Teutonic Knights or the forced submission to the Vatican and Latinization at the point of the Szczerbiec
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Szczerbiec
split when the Polish king invaded Kievan Rus in support of Svetpolk, murderer of SS. Boris and Gleb, fighting against Yaroslav the Wise.

The epitomy of it was the rather dogmatic statement made as a matter of fact, that the "Catholic Chruch and the Russian Orthodox Church are sisters Churches....virtually identical in theology," and the reference to the Latin bishops as "brother priests" to the Orthodox bishops.  The PoM response to the Horos of the council of Ravenna says otherwise.  Russia has seen what the Vatican has done to the sister Churches of Serbia, Czech Republic etc.  They aren't stupid.
Quote
The sound principles of Catholicism, however, were maintained and propagated by the Jesuits who, suppressed by the Holy See and exiled from the Catholic nations, found an asylum and the centre of their future revival in Russia. In 1779 Catharine II invited the Jesuits to exercise their ministry in White Russia, and in 1786 they had in Russia six colleges and 178 members. Their number increased so much that Pius VII re-established their order for Russia, where it returned to life under Father Gruber. In 1801 the society had 262 members, and 347 in 1811. The Jesuits retained a lively gratitude for the hospitality that they had received in Russia, and worked with zeal to convert it to Catholicism.
http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/13253a.htm
hasn't changed.

Heck, the Russian Imperial Army was many times worse than the Inquisition and the Papal States combined.

LOL. Spoken like a Latin centric Pole.

The only part of the regalia of the king of Poland to survive (and preserved like a Holy Relic in the Wawel) you call Szczerbiec "knicked (sword),"  the king's sword.  And what is the explanation of how it got it's "knick?"  Duke Boleslaw, first king of Poland, struck the Golden Gate of Kiev with it. What was he doing in Kiev?  Invading to help put his son-in-law, Sviatopolk the Accursed, the murder of Saints Boris and Gleb, on St. Vladimir's throne. The Polish princess came with the Vatican bishop Reinbern of Kolberg, who of course acted as the agent of the Germanic suppressor of the Eastern Rites.  Russians have memories too.

Care to elaborate with what "atrocities" you are accusing the Russian Imperial Army of?
The holy army of long bearded holy warriors defending the Holy Tsar and the Holy Church, in its sacred function of holy and all blessed policeman of the world, in its holy fury raped, pillaged and murdered thousands.

That's a rather vague accusation.  Can you supply some details.


Quote
Well, one example, there is a church about 15 minutes walk from where I am writing. In 1794,the Cossacks came here to establish the Tsar's rule. In fear, the local peasantry moved out of their homes deep into the forests. The Russians searched the local villages and burnt down many homes. After breaking down the church door, the Cossacks came in and stole the chalice, ciborium and tabernacle which they later sold in Russia. Sacrilege!

Of course, if the Polish king hadn't been so hell bent on forcing the Orthodox into submission to the Vatican, the Cossacks wouldn't have had to turn to the Czar.  Met. St. Peter Movila/Mohyla formed an Orthodox ethos loyal to the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, but the Polish king would have none of it.  I don't know where you are: are you sure that the Church wasn't one of the many, MANY that the Polish king confiscated from the Orthodox?

Btw, your sword was saved from being melted down, with the rest of your crown jewels, by being sold in Russia.



Quote
This and similar incidents were repeated throughout the country.

Do tell us.



Quote
But the holy Tsar and the Holy Holy Russian Army, made up of holymen, who were always holy in their holiness, in their fidelity to holiness, in their sanctity murdered hundreds of Orthodox priests in 1915. It is weird how the immaculate Tsarist army became a part of the Bolshevik Soviet machine. Do you forget that the officially Tsarist army was the main mode of revolution in Russia.
But not the Bolshevik Revolution: the army was White.  Interesting how the Bolsheviks and Piłsudski depended on the Socialism of the minorities.  Isn't he the one who got your sword back?

Quote
And why can't you say 'Roman CAtholic Church' instead of saying 'The Vatican'? Just curious.
That Vatican isn't part of the Catholic Church.
Rome lived on in New Rome when Old Rome fell, and the Romanians are Orthodox.
The Vatican is not a local Church.
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« Reply #31 on: February 26, 2010, 08:41:49 PM »


Quote
And why can't you say 'Roman CAtholic Church' instead of saying 'The Vatican'? Just curious.
That Vatican isn't part of the Catholic Church.
Rome lived on in New Rome when Old Rome fell, and the Romanians are Orthodox.
The Vatican is not a local Church.
What?!! That is your own private interpretation. You formulize it to suit your own terminology The canons say Rome maintains precedence over the new Rome. But I won't get into any further. Anyway, I was talking about the present missionary work, not the past.
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« Reply #32 on: February 26, 2010, 09:09:47 PM »

This is just my opinion so don't get upset because this:

How does the Russian Orthodox Church feel about having Catholic missionaries on their homeland? And isn't Latin America predominantly Roman Catholic? So I see this as a double standard. It seems to me as if the attitude maintained is," keep your missionaries out of our turf but we'll go onto yours".


That's how I see it, and it's just my opinion.
I'm not sure the big problem in Russia is Catholic missionaries so much as it is the proliferation of Protestant missionaries representing sects that had no presence in Russia prior to the Bolshevik persecutions.  I could be wrong, though, since I'm only speaking from hearsay.
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« Reply #33 on: February 26, 2010, 09:20:24 PM »


Quote
And why can't you say 'Roman CAtholic Church' instead of saying 'The Vatican'? Just curious.
That Vatican isn't part of the Catholic Church.
Rome lived on in New Rome when Old Rome fell, and the Romanians are Orthodox.
The Vatican is not a local Church.
What?!! That is your own private interpretation. You formulize it to suit your own terminology The canons say Rome maintains precedence over the new Rome. But I won't get into any further. Anyway, I was talking about the present missionary work, not the past.
Just an observation:  You brought up the subject of the apparent double standard of Orthodox missionary work in traditionally Catholic lands, a legitimate concern to you, since you identify yourself as Roman Catholic.  I'm having trouble understanding, though, how this relates to the original topic of mass migrations to the Orthodox Church and am thus led to believe that something on this thread has provoked your Catholic sensitivities and that you're fighting back against this.  I'm concerned that such a reaction as I see from you may derail this thread and run against the purpose of the Faith Issues board, so I think that maybe Faith Issues isn't the best place for your line of questioning.  You may find that the Orthodox-Catholic board will work better for you.  Just a thought.
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« Reply #34 on: February 26, 2010, 09:27:12 PM »


Quote
And why can't you say 'Roman Catholic Church' instead of saying 'The Vatican'? Just curious.
That Vatican isn't part of the Catholic Church.
Rome lived on in New Rome when Old Rome fell, and the Romanians are Orthodox.
The Vatican is not a local Church.
What?!! That is your own private interpretation. You formulize it to suit your own terminology The canons say Rome maintains precedence over the new Rome. But I won't get into any further. Anyway, I was talking about the present missionary work, not the past.
Just an observation: You brought up the subject of the apparent double standard of Orthodox missionary work in traditionally Catholic lands, a legitimate concern to you, since you identify yourself as Roman Catholic. I'm having trouble understanding, though, how this relates to the original topic of mass migrations to the Orthodox Church and am thus led to believe that something on this thread has provoked your Catholic sensitivities and that you're fighting back against this. I'm concerned that such a reaction as I see from you may derail this thread and run against the purpose of the Faith Issues board, so I think that maybe Faith Issues isn't the best place for your line of questioning. You may find that the  board will work better for you. Just a thought.
You are correct and that is why I said I would not get into this any further. I didn't mean to possibly provoke a derailment. I just thought I'd give my opinion since someone included  in the mass migrations to the Orthodox Church. That's all and I apology for any inconvenience.
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« Reply #35 on: February 26, 2010, 09:38:38 PM »


Specifically he mentioned a group of about 40,000-70,000 in Guatemala that are looking to convert.

Tha's interesting because I had a message from an OCA priest about 10 days ago and he was speaking of 50,000 Guatemalans coming into the OCA before the Fall.   He was speaking of how their parish is already preparing for Spanish services.
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« Reply #36 on: February 27, 2010, 01:23:26 AM »


Quote
And why can't you say 'Roman CAtholic Church' instead of saying 'The Vatican'? Just curious.
That Vatican isn't part of the Catholic Church.
Rome lived on in New Rome when Old Rome fell, and the Romanians are Orthodox.
The Vatican is not a local Church.
What?!! That is your own private interpretation.
No, that is the judgement of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church.

Quote
You formulize it to suit your own terminology

No, just the Church's terminology.

Quote
The canons say Rome maintains precedence over the new Rome.

Not while Rome remains in schism and heresy she doesn't.

Quote
But I won't get into any further. Anyway, I was talking about the present missionary work, not the past.
Yes, how convenient the selective memory works for the Vatican.  I can see why indulgences are so popular.
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« Reply #37 on: February 27, 2010, 01:44:36 AM »


Quote
And why can't you say 'Roman CAtholic Church' instead of saying 'The Vatican'? Just curious.
That Vatican isn't part of the Catholic Church.
Rome lived on in New Rome when Old Rome fell, and the Romanians are Orthodox.
The Vatican is not a local Church.
What?!! That is your own private interpretation.
No, that is the judgement of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church.

Quote
You formulize it to suit your own terminology

No, just the Church's terminology.

Quote
The canons say Rome maintains precedence over the new Rome.

Not while Rome remains in schism and heresy she doesn't.

Quote
But I won't get into any further. Anyway, I was talking about the present missionary work, not the past.
Yes, how convenient the selective memory works for the Vatican.  I can see why indulgences are so popular.
O.k. I am not going to debate with you. We are supposed to be charitible and respectful, signs of our christian faith. I know you are a very intelligent person and wondered why you opted for the term Vatican rather than Roman Catholic whenever you referred to my church. That's all, I don't want to derail the thread with any more comments. Maybe you can start a new thread in the Orthodox-Catholic section?
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« Reply #38 on: February 27, 2010, 01:52:49 AM »

How does the Russian Orthodox Church feel about having Catholic missionaries on their homeland?

So the Catholic missionaries went into Russia through military force? When did this happen? And why can't you say 'Roman CAtholic Church' instead of saying 'The Vatican'? Just curious.

This is an image from an Italian Catholic magazine "30 Giorni"  in 1990.

Perestroika had hardly begun and Pope John Paul is already leading his troops into Russia  to "CONQUER Holy Mother Russia" for the Catholic Church.

You must see why the Orthodox are wary of the Catholics?

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« Reply #39 on: February 27, 2010, 03:54:59 AM »

Whoever chose the photo for the campaign to "conquer Holy Mother Russia" must have missed the onion domes topped with crosses. How ironic.  Tongue Wink laugh
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« Reply #40 on: February 27, 2010, 11:21:27 PM »

You must see why the Orthodox are wary of the Catholics?

Orthodoxy is the only other Christian Church which poses a serious threat to their claims.  Conquering is imperative.
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« Reply #41 on: December 20, 2011, 02:32:51 AM »

How does the Russian Orthodox Church feel about having Catholic missionaries on their homeland?
.
The Orthodox prepare for defensive operations....  laugh




This is an image from an Italian Catholic magazine "30 Giorni"  in 1990.

Perestroika had hardly begun and Pope John Paul is already leading his troops into Russia  to "CONQUER Holy Mother Russia" for the Catholic Church.

You must see why the Orthodox are wary of the Catholics?


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« Reply #42 on: December 20, 2011, 02:40:42 AM »

This is just my opinion so don't get upset because this:

How does the Russian Orthodox Church feel about having Catholic missionaries on their homeland? And isn't Latin America predominantly Roman Catholic? So I see this as a double standard. It seems to me as if the attitude maintained is," keep your missionaries out of our turf but we'll go onto yours".


That's how I see it, and it's just my opinion.

Because, that's why!  Sad

You're right, but nobody's going to admit it.
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« Reply #43 on: December 20, 2011, 02:45:29 AM »

/\ Even if that shot is Photoshopped, I still LOVE IT!!  laugh laugh

But it needs a vanguard of indomitable babushki to make it complete - the twin prongs of defense, capable of repelling any threat. Have at them!!  laugh
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« Reply #44 on: December 20, 2011, 02:47:17 AM »

Because, we Orthodox are right, that's why!

Fixed it for you.  Wink
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