Is racism a problem in the Orthodox church? I've heard, in Greek churches especially, that if you aren't Greek, Russian, etc. you will be looked at as an outsider. My fiance said, when I told her I was going to check out the Greek church down the street, that I would be the whitest and blondest guy in the room. Turns out she was right. It seemed as if everyone was Greek! And after the service an old Greek man came up to me and said I needed better clothes. I said "OK.... me and the family are kinda broke right now ha ha" (trying to laugh it off). He says "Well you need to find some money" and walked off. I was wearing black slacks, dress shoes and a button down.
Just a thought that came to me
The Orthodox are a mixed bag, and so they are just like everyone else in this regard. You will find racists everywhere......including here, but you will also find non-racists as well. I'm an African American, and I attend an Arabic parish, and if I can fit in, then surely you can.
At the end of the day you have to look at people as individuals and go from there. You also have to have thick skin, for you will run into someone from time to time that will rub you the wrong way. You can't allow such things to stop you, and eventually in alot of cases, even those people will turn around or change their view about you once they get to know you better. Relationships is key! It has been my personal experience that you will find way more Orthodox Christians that will like you and embrace you. But you will find some that won't, but don't let that get you down......don't allow that to stop you.
I'm not gonna share my personal thoughts about the GOA, but the OCA, ROCOR, and maybe some convert Antiochian, Serbian, and Ukranian missions and parishes.......might be a better fit. I am only saying this because some within the GOA have an idea of "mission" as something similar to what I saw within some protestant and Roman Catholic groups. You know, they only want to reach the rich and wealthy in America.....the brightest minds in America.........etc. (the top down method.....when it comes to reaching nonOrthodox Americans)
You know, it's the same old stuff we saw in some sectors in protestant and Roman Catholic land. Nothing new. So hold on, and don't let such things stop you from becoming Orthodox. Like I said.......if I can do it, then you can too. I'm a bottoms up type of guy when it comes to missions for there are more poor and middle class than rich, and it is todays poor and middle class that will be tomorrows rich and famous.......especialy in a classless, and free market society. Also the poor and middle classes produce more kids than the rich and wealthy, and so todays rich will die out tomorrow, but todays poor and middle class will be tomorrows future.
The Orthodox are a mixed bag. ......just like everyone else. Keep your head up, and don't give up!
Christ is Ascendent!