Is it not true that monks live sheltered lives and hide from any sort of exposure of the world that contains both goodness and wickedness? And doesn't that mean they are ineffective in representing the Orthodox faith by not letting their light shine before men?
This is a good question, Achronos. My answer stems mostly from my readings, but also from my interaction with the EO nuns in my area.
Although from an exterior perspective, it may at first seem as though monastics are sheltered from the troubles of the world, in truth the same troubles that afflict you and I, Achronos, also afflict the monastics; lust, greed, power, pride, etc... there is no hiding from these illnesses of the heart. In fact, I would assert that rather than being sheltered, the opposite is true; because monastics have fewer distractions than those of us in the world have, they fight the spiritual warfare like true warriors. You and I can turn on the TV or computer, read a book, call up a friend. You and I can get drunk, take a pill, get in our cars and go for a drive. Monastics do not have these distractions. As has been pointed out, monastics can be mean spirited, lazy, foul-mouthed, etc. And why not? They are human and suffer from ancestral sin just as you and I do. In fact, they are under constant attack from the Evil One because he can't stand for anyone to be saved. If we aren't fighting the good fight, the Evil One doesn't need to focus on us. Have a look at the icon of the Ladder of Divine Ascent.
Monastics do not become monastics to represent Orthodoxy; they do so to repent and pray. Some achieve what they set out to do and some do not, just like we in the world.