Author Topic: Top Reasons People Leave Orthodoxy  (Read 4268 times)

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Offline primuspilus

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Re: Top Reasons People Leave Orthodoxy
« Reply #45 on: October 22, 2012, 10:18:46 AM »
They don't kiss icons or use incense in the WR?
No.
I dont know what WRO parish you went to, but mine sure does. We use incense, kiss and venerate the icons, do the occasional prostration...heck we even use the occasional greek phrase during feast days (Pascha was the last time I believe).

My priest was an Anglican bishop, so I dont think it has to do with where the said priest came from.

PP

Quote
Unrealistic expectations based on too much heady reading coming into the Church.
+ whatever we're up to now.

PP
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Offline Αριστοκλής

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Re: Top Reasons People Leave Orthodoxy
« Reply #46 on: October 22, 2012, 11:06:34 AM »
Some leave due to intensive Internet self-catechizing.
"Religion is a neurobiological illness and Orthodoxy is its cure." - Fr. John S. Romanides

Offline Tallitot

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Re: Top Reasons People Leave Orthodoxy
« Reply #47 on: October 22, 2012, 11:57:18 AM »
I dont know what WRO parish you went to, but mine sure does. We use incense, kiss and venerate the icons, do the occasional prostration...heck we even use the occasional greek phrase during feast days (Pascha was the last time I believe).

My priest was an Anglican bishop, so I dont think it has to do with where the said priest came from.

PP
Not surprising, Anglicans come in 2 varieties- 'Low'n'Lazy" and "High'n'Crazy". My sig-o is the organist at an Episcopal church and they're using the EO setting of the Beatitudes as a communion hymn on All Saint's.
« Last Edit: October 22, 2012, 11:59:00 AM by Tallitot »
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Offline Orthodox11

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Re: Top Reasons People Leave Orthodoxy
« Reply #48 on: October 22, 2012, 12:10:43 PM »
WRO comes accross as very DIY in this thread. Is there really so little uniformity on matters so basic as the use of incense and icons?

Offline primuspilus

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Re: Top Reasons People Leave Orthodoxy
« Reply #49 on: October 22, 2012, 01:27:00 PM »
WRO comes accross as very DIY in this thread. Is there really so little uniformity on matters so basic as the use of incense and icons?
Well, WRO has only been instituted for about 30 or 40 years. I think thats one reason that for Antiochians, they now have a Bishop of contact. Hopefully, it'll bring about some uniformity, because there is a bit of confusion. There is alot of variations in everything from Liturgy (St. Tikhon, St. Gregory, Sarum, heck, I even heard of someone using St. Germanus), sign of the cross, incense, etc.

PP
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Gregory the Great

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Offline HabteSelassie

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Re: Top Reasons People Leave Orthodoxy
« Reply #50 on: October 22, 2012, 01:56:29 PM »
Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!


The bigger question to ask is why are cradle Orthodox, and not just in the US, all over the world, leaving Orthodox?  We have a very active youth program here at my parish, and I am proud at what God has accomplished through our efforts, but alas, there are twice as many youth that got away and we can only pray in a few years when they settle down to start their families God brings them back.  So why are the top reasons folks leave Orthodoxy?

From my experience interacting with ethnic youth who've left their parishes (Ethiopians, Copts, Greeks) the biggest beef I always interpreted as being a kind of culture clash.  A lot of these young folks, even if outside of the US, feel like they are a different generation, a different culture than the Old World of Orthodox.  Here in the America it is exceptionally accentuated by the fact that all Americans kind of feel this way about life. Is the shove it (censored for mods :) ) approach to conflict.  The first instinct of being an American is to either fight a conflict or misunderstanding, or simply abandoned in for ego-boosting alternatives. Unfortunately it seems through our pop-culture we are exporting this caustic attitude across the world :(

The second issue I'd say is personality clashes.  I'm willing to wager that when ANYONE cradle or convert, youth or elder, leaves a parish either to go to a different parish or to leave the Church entirely, there are contributing personality conflicts with somebody.  Maybe they are beefing with the priests, maybe its the council, maybe its some body they ran into in the halls, maybe it is some kind of committee beef, but I have seen this happen several times. Further whenever I mediate conflicts for our teenagers and young adults at my parish, these personality conflicts are the number one issue.  "They said this.." or "He did that.." or "She said we can't do this.." or "They told us one thing and now they're telling us another thing.." are the biggest complaints I hear and the majority of conflicts I have to help solve.  Even among elders and leaders, I am on several committees at our parish, I have seen quarrels between priests, between bishops (!!), between gray-haired elders, between men and men, between women and women, between men and women, deacons, kids, everybody.  The Church is real life, we bring our real lives with us, and life is on the line daily for a lot of matters.  It is a struggle that reflects the human experience, and we are being healed by the Holy Spirit as we work it out together.  Sometimes some folks just can't deal with the strife, either because they have idealistic expectations or they just don't have the patience.  Some folks again leave to other parishes, others leave the Church for good.  We can only pray about all these kinds of matters, but we should be addressing them in our discussions.

So to summarize all that blah blah I typed above

(1) Culture Shock

(2) Personality conflicts and personal misunderstandings

This is for cradles and converts alike, but young folks in particular.


There should be strict enforcement of the canon requiring a catechumen to attend 3 parish council meetings before chrismation.

Then they'll never come back ;)

Speaking of which, I have a committee meeting on Sunday I am begrudgingly looking forward too  :angel:

stay blessed,
habte selassie
"Yet stand aloof from stupid questionings and geneologies and strifes and fightings about law, for they are without benefit and vain." Titus 3:10

Offline podkarpatska

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Re: Top Reasons People Leave Orthodoxy
« Reply #51 on: October 22, 2012, 02:01:05 PM »
How about never ending passionate arguments among Orthodox about the 'proper' way to pronounce dead languages?

Offline Alpo

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Re: Top Reasons People Leave Orthodoxy
« Reply #52 on: October 22, 2012, 02:54:23 PM »
WRO comes accross as very DIY in this thread. Is there really so little uniformity on matters so basic as the use of incense and icons?
Well, WRO has only been instituted for about 30 or 40 years. I think thats one reason that for Antiochians, they now have a Bishop of contact.

Antiochians have WR bishop? Who is he? ROCOR has bishop Jerome on Manhattan but I haven't heard of Antiochian counterpart.
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Offline Shiny

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Re: Top Reasons People Leave Orthodoxy
« Reply #53 on: October 22, 2012, 03:00:36 PM »
They don't kiss icons or use incense in the WR?
No.
I dont know what WRO parish you went to, but mine sure does. We use incense, kiss and venerate the icons, do the occasional prostration...heck we even use the occasional greek phrase during feast days (Pascha was the last time I believe).

My priest was an Anglican bishop, so I dont think it has to do with where the said priest came from.

PP
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Offline Αριστοκλής

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Re: Top Reasons People Leave Orthodoxy
« Reply #54 on: October 22, 2012, 03:08:29 PM »
How about never ending passionate arguments among Orthodox about the 'proper' way to pronounce dead languages?

There would be no debate if the language was dead. It is not.
"Religion is a neurobiological illness and Orthodoxy is its cure." - Fr. John S. Romanides

Offline podkarpatska

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Re: Top Reasons People Leave Orthodoxy
« Reply #55 on: October 22, 2012, 03:23:54 PM »
How about never ending passionate arguments among Orthodox about the 'proper' way to pronounce dead languages?

There would be no debate if the language was dead. It is not.

As to Koine - the debate is really for academics no matter how much folks try to justify it's relevance in  the daily lives of the average lay person here in the US and as to Church Slavonic - have you ever been in the middle of a pan-Orthodox Choir when the Ukies and the Russians are yelling it out over Gospodi or Hospodi?  ;)
« Last Edit: October 22, 2012, 03:24:13 PM by podkarpatska »

Offline Αριστοκλής

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Re: Top Reasons People Leave Orthodoxy
« Reply #56 on: October 22, 2012, 03:54:43 PM »
How about never ending passionate arguments among Orthodox about the 'proper' way to pronounce dead languages?

There would be no debate if the language was dead. It is not.

As to Koine - the debate is really for academics no matter how much folks try to justify it's relevance in  the daily lives of the average lay person here in the US and as to Church Slavonic - have you ever been in the middle of a pan-Orthodox Choir when the Ukies and the Russians are yelling it out over Gospodi or Hospodi?  ;)

LOL! No, but the topic has been debated at trapeza.  :D
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Offline celticfan1888

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Re: Top Reasons People Leave Orthodoxy
« Reply #57 on: October 22, 2012, 06:10:37 PM »
WRO comes accross as very DIY in this thread. Is there really so little uniformity on matters so basic as the use of incense and icons?

Well, I think it depends on the jurisdiction, as much as anything.
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Offline Orthodox11

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Re: Top Reasons People Leave Orthodoxy
« Reply #58 on: October 23, 2012, 05:18:16 AM »
Well, WRO has only been instituted for about 30 or 40 years. I think thats one reason that for Antiochians, they now have a Bishop of contact. Hopefully, it'll bring about some uniformity, because there is a bit of confusion. There is alot of variations in everything from Liturgy (St. Tikhon, St. Gregory, Sarum, heck, I even heard of someone using St. Germanus), sign of the cross, incense, etc.

I would have thought the fact that the WRO is so recent would have led to greater uniformity, greater caution by Church authorities, and greater reluctance to allow individual priests or parishes to experiment in such a pick-and-chose fashion. I get that there is a basic difference between Antioch using the revised BCP and ROCOR reconstructions of pre-schism rites, but surely its desirable for parishes under a single diocese to use a single rite (and what is mentioned above isn't even a question of rite, but of incense and iconography). I sincerely hope that the bishop you mentioned will help to solve the problem.

Offline primuspilus

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Re: Top Reasons People Leave Orthodoxy
« Reply #59 on: October 23, 2012, 06:10:36 AM »
Well, WRO has only been instituted for about 30 or 40 years. I think thats one reason that for Antiochians, they now have a Bishop of contact. Hopefully, it'll bring about some uniformity, because there is a bit of confusion. There is alot of variations in everything from Liturgy (St. Tikhon, St. Gregory, Sarum, heck, I even heard of someone using St. Germanus), sign of the cross, incense, etc.

I would have thought the fact that the WRO is so recent would have led to greater uniformity, greater caution by Church authorities, and greater reluctance to allow individual priests or parishes to experiment in such a pick-and-chose fashion. I get that there is a basic difference between Antioch using the revised BCP and ROCOR reconstructions of pre-schism rites, but surely its desirable for parishes under a single diocese to use a single rite (and what is mentioned above isn't even a question of rite, but of incense and iconography). I sincerely hope that the bishop you mentioned will help to solve the problem.
I know my priest has shown some irritation because of 2 big issues. One is communication. Alot of folks are left in the dark about alot of things going on for the WRO, and changes that happen take a "X has been done, and that's that" approach. Secondly, is that the budget for the entire WR is less than just the office budget of the headquarters of the archdiocese. Thats just the office itself, not the entire headquarters....

PP
"I confidently affirm that whoever calls himself Universal Bishop is the precursor of Antichrist"
Gregory the Great

"Never, never, never let anyone tell you that, in order to be Orthodox, you must also be eastern." St. John Maximovitch, The Wonderworker

Offline Basil 320

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Re: Top Reasons People Leave Orthodoxy
« Reply #60 on: October 23, 2012, 06:58:17 AM »
People West of Eastern Europe, including the Western Hemisphere, will find the Orthodox Church foreign and strange, and they will experience an emptiness, if they do not have an understanding of the history of the Eastern Orthodox Church and a basic understanding of the purpose and meaning of the Divine Services of the church.
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Offline LizaSymonenko

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Re: Top Reasons People Leave Orthodoxy
« Reply #61 on: October 23, 2012, 09:02:45 AM »

I would never have thought anyone could experience "emptiness" in the Orthodox Church.  It's so alive and vibrant - full of color, sound, motion....to the point of overstimulating the senses.

I would think they would suffer more from being overwhelmed by what they see, hear, smell and experience, rather than from a sense of emptiness.

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Offline LBK

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Re: Top Reasons People Leave Orthodoxy
« Reply #62 on: October 23, 2012, 09:30:15 AM »

I would never have thought anyone could experience "emptiness" in the Orthodox Church.  It's so alive and vibrant - full of color, sound, motion....to the point of overstimulating the senses.

I would think they would suffer more from being overwhelmed by what they see, hear, smell and experience, rather than from a sense of emptiness.


I'm with Liza on this. Countless times I've heard non-Orthodox visitors to my church say to me, or to others, that they were indeed blown away by all that they experienced. More than once, I've heard this: There were times I didn't know which century I was in.
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Offline katherineofdixie

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Re: Top Reasons People Leave Orthodoxy
« Reply #63 on: October 23, 2012, 09:35:08 AM »

I would never have thought anyone could experience "emptiness" in the Orthodox Church.  It's so alive and vibrant - full of color, sound, motion....to the point of overstimulating the senses.

I would think they would suffer more from being overwhelmed by what they see, hear, smell and experience, rather than from a sense of emptiness.


I'm with Liza on this. Countless times I've heard non-Orthodox visitors to my church say to me, or to others, that they were indeed blown away by all that they experienced. More than once, I've heard this: There were times I didn't know which century I was in.

Indeed. My husband and I tend to nudge each other when we see visitors with that stunned but nevertheless sort of happy look on their faces. You learn to spot it after awhile.
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Offline Knee V

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Re: Top Reasons People Leave Orthodoxy
« Reply #64 on: October 23, 2012, 02:03:19 PM »
While this won't apply to all who leave Orthodoxy - and it may only apply to a small handful - there are many who leave for the same reason that people leave other churches: spiritual apathy and allowing the soil of our hearts to become hazardous to the seed of the Word which was planted in them.

I just want to note that I appreciate your posts on this forum and sometimes (not often) I disagree with them.

Thank you for the kind word.

Offline choy

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Re: Top Reasons People Leave Orthodoxy
« Reply #65 on: October 23, 2012, 02:43:50 PM »

I would never have thought anyone could experience "emptiness" in the Orthodox Church.  It's so alive and vibrant - full of color, sound, motion....to the point of overstimulating the senses.

I would think they would suffer more from being overwhelmed by what they see, hear, smell and experience, rather than from a sense of emptiness.



The reality is some Orthodox churches aren't as vibrant of others.  I've never personally visited one but I've met people with stories about such places.  I don't know how prevalent they are, but I can see the issue as we are facing the same thing in the Eastern Catholic Church.