Look a little deeper. Even in the most ethnic Russian "hyperdox" church I've ever visited, this wouldn't be the ratio I would've come up with. If you hope to learn this people's language and move to their country one day, you'd do well to actually get to know them better than this.
Okay, if you insist? I'll dig a little deeper if the moderators will allow it? I have 2 examples:
I once studied the bible with a group of people who had the same experience in every meeting place throughout the entire world.
No matter where you attended; they all studied the same material during the same time period.
There came a time where they decided to rearrange the territories and split up the group I attended, and send 80% of them to a
different location. I didn't necessarily like the new group of people that much, and I missed my friends from the old group.
Technically, I was supposed to attend the group that I lived in; but I instead decided to attend the group further away, where my friends were.
Now, this was never regarded as a "faith issue" because all the meetings were the same no matter where you went.
It could only be regarded as a "personal preference"; and had no bearing on matters of faith at all.
My 2nd example, with the RC church. You have Irish Catholic, Italian Catholic, Lithuanian Catholic, Polish Catholic, ect...
Let's say I'm raised in a Lithuanian Catholic church; and I move to a new neighborhood;
and now my choices are to go to either a Polish Catholic or an Irish Catholic Church.
I say, well maybe I'd rather go to the Irish Catholic Church, than the Polish Catholic Church;
so I go to that one instead.
Now, honestly, I cannot see how deciding to attend an Irish Catholic Church over a Polish Catholic Church;
could ever be regarded as a matter of faith; since all Roman Catholic Masses are mostly the same;
at least with where I've attended. So, this would only be seen as a personal preference.
So, now you tell me the following:
When people say that "Orthodoxy is the same everywhere, in all jurisdictions", what they primarily mean is that the faith is the same. All sorts of cultural differences are there, differences in how we celebrate the services, languages, etc., but they don't touch upon the essence of the faith. In that sense, Orthodoxy really is the same everywhere. That's why some of us wondered why it was that you were so insistent that it's "this jurisdiction or nothing".
Really??? Are you sure??? You don't sound too convincing here. If Orthodoxy truly was the same everywhere, in all jurisdictions; like you say it is; then why would you ever regard my desire to attend a specific jurisdiction as anything other than a personal preference?
How on earth does it become a matter of faith (or lack thereof) to prefer one jurisdiction over another?
Do you see the logical hole you've dug for yourself here?
"In that sense, Orthodoxy really is the same everywhere."
In what sense could it "really be the same everywhere";
if my preference for a specific jurisdiction causes you to question my reasons for converting?
Do you understand what's going on here? You are doubting me because you don't seem to believe that yourself.
What are you hiding here? Why does a personal preference for a certain location or language of services;
cause you to doubt my reasons for wanting to convert; if they truly are the same and jurisdictions really don't matter?
Are you able to see the logical fallacy in your arguments here?
so if the most you want to say is that you have an interest in the language and in emigrating to the country represented by the jurisdiction you're interested in, that's fine. But understand that if that's all you want to tell us about your motives, then people are naturally going to wonder, for example, if you're choosing "Serbia" over "Jesus", or "educational and travel opportunities" over "Jesus". And if that's the case, then your priorities are messed up.
Oh really? And why are they going to wonder that? What are YOU choosing over Jesus?
Are YOUR priorities messed up? Honestly, I don't understand where you come up with this stuff;
just because I prefer to attend a specific type of church.
And this in response to telling me I should leave this church and move to another one?
If they were really all the same; then it wouldn't matter if I moved or not, would it?
How does wanting to attend a specific jurisdiction lead to negative accusations about my motives and beliefs?
How do you even define having a belief in Jesus?
How can you have a belief in Jesus, if you don't know anything about him?
Where do you get information about Jesus except from the bible?
Do the Orthodox have a monopoly on the bible, or can anyone read it?
How much do you have to read, to have the background for an accurate belief in Jesus?
Have you read the bible enough to have an accurate understanding of Jesus?
How much does it take?
Every scripture I've ever heard quoted in an Orthodox Church, I've already read hundreds of times before.
I honestly don't think you need to study every scripture 1000's of times to express a belief in Jesus.
Don't the Orthodox know anything about the bible at all?
How can it be possible to attend the Orthodox Church and NOT believe in Jesus?
What are you saying here, by accusing me of this?
Does nobody in the Orthodox Church believe in Jesus?
When someone says to me: "One should be converting because one recognizes Orthodoxy as the true apostolic faith"
my response is: Well, they'd better be or else why would I be converting?
But, how is that called into question by my desire to attend a specific jurisdiction?
It does't sound to me like the person who said that, believes it himself?
Do you understand what I'm saying? This doesn't sound good.
Why is your default position to assume that people converting don't recognize Orthodoxy as the true apostolic faith?
Why is your default position to assume that someone expressing a jurisdictional preference, has no belief in Jesus?
What difference does it make to the country whose language and culture I want to learn; what church I attend?
Why are you being so judgmental about everything I post here?
I'm only asking for information and I don't know very much about Orthodoxy.
What are you hiding from me?
What are you not telling me about Orthodoxy, to have such a negative set of default assumptions about people
who are already attending an Orthodox Church and are just asking for more information about it?
I'm starting to get very nervous about where these questions are going?
Why are you passing such a negative judgement on me for desiring to attend a specific jurisdiction?
Are you sure all jurisdictions are the same, because it doesn't sound like it by what you've said so far?
Can you please tell me what the Real issues are with jurisdictions, then?
I'd really like to know if I could, okay?
Also, I apologize if what I've said here might sound a bit harsh. I honestly don't mean it that way.
But, it seems like my motives for converting are being endlessly accused of something;
and I do not know what; but the initial assumptions of the accusers are more of a concern
than ANY possible motive I could ever have to convert; so please explain yourselves, okay?