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Author Topic: Problems for Orthodox in non-orthodox countrys  (Read 1187 times) Average Rating: 0
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Justionios
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« on: April 23, 2005, 04:57:19 AM »

In the town were I live we are about 700 Greeks. Of these greeks that are not many that are going to orthodox church :- .

Many of them see orthodoxy as something cultural, and the ones that belive in God see us all as Christians.
We are only a few that belive's that orthodoxy is the only true, I my self are an old-calendarist but I actually like and are happy when many people are gathering in the church wich is under the EP.

But I'm kind troublled , With the last events that have happend it have become even more difficult to tell peole that they should prefer the Orthodox church in front of the protesant or Catholic church. Because all of them have seen our Patriatate in Rome at the Popes funereall. So how can I tell these people to go to church, (only orthodox church) without beeing seen as fundamentalist and nationalist ??

Yes I could tell them that the Patriarch is heretic, but that's not my mission, I want to tell people to go to the orthodox church to the easter without them telling me that i am an greek fundamentalist, and hear them telling me that I should follow the Patriates example my self.

I am postive to all sugestion of how I could send people to church.

In Christ
« Last Edit: April 24, 2005, 01:32:49 PM by Justionios » Logged

ΧΑΙΡΕ ΑΝΟΡΘΡΩΣΕΙΣ ΤΩΝ ΑΝΘΡΩΠΩΝ , ΧΑΙΡΕ Κ
eleni
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« Reply #1 on: April 23, 2005, 05:43:17 AM »

Hi Justionios,
It is the same here in Australia......although many do not have any knowledge of what is happening besides the few gossips here and there...of which we should not listen or pay any attention to...be attentive to what is around us, but not slander anyone(of course I am guilty of this sin and many others)

My car has been at the mechanics now for 1 month nearly and I find it hard to get around.....I have churches close by but the atmosphere there is not right for me.....

Nikolaos it is very hard to tell someone about political stuff in the church....on the hand it affects all  of Orthodoxy because people just out of habbit go to church and cannot see what is happening.....if church becomes like a social event, then it ceases to have any truth in it...
I remember going to church when young(Im 37) and up until a few yrs back understood it all...but we all fall and I got up again.....only this time I am understanding more of what Life and Christ is about.....to follow Him and pick up Your CROSS means....
To struggle (as someone pointed out to me in another thread)is to live in Christ and accept all with good cheer.....This of-course is not easy.....we get upset and we fight back.....
sorry for going on a bit too much.....
All we can do is to use prayer .....whenever we can ..in our thoughts and simply involve our time with people that want to listen about Christ and avoid idle talk(this is hard,again its ''struggle'' or ''suffering'' to avoid passionate thought of whatever they may be)
I know what im saying is right, but to actually do this, we all need each others prayers ......alone we dont stand a chance because we live in a society that tell us otherwise....
have mercy on me a sinner......helen
Glory be to God and the  Theotokos and His Saints.....
Today is LAZARUS .....

O Christ, Thou who knowest all things,
Thou hast asked to learn where the tomb of Lazarus is,
And arriving there, Thou hast raised him up on the fourth day,
O All-powerful One,
Taking pity, Merciful One,
On the tears of Mary and Martha.

the rest....
http://www.monachos.net/great_lent/lazarus_saturday.shtml
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lpap
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« Reply #2 on: April 23, 2005, 05:51:40 AM »

I postive to all sugestion of how I could send people to church
In Christ

I would suggest that you stop concerning of what others do.

As long as you asking this question because you are interested in them, rather in their actions, there is only one answer: pray and you shall receive.

You can not sent people to church. No sir, you can not. You may however pray for them from your heart, regardless of their preffered church, and that is all that you can do.
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Michael
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« Reply #3 on: April 23, 2005, 06:03:47 AM »

I agree with lpap. there is only so much that anybody can do do convince another of his point of view without coming acros as closed-minded/fundamentalist. Justionios' post has made me realise that it is even more difficult for certain people. If a particular viewpoint/religion is often associated with a particular group or particular groups of people (in this case, ethnicity), then it becomes even more difficult for somebody of that group not to come across as fundamentalist, even though (s)he may not be.

The only thing that you can do, in addition to prayer, is to share with people the joy that you find in your faith. It may not be beneficial to actively make a point of mentioning it, but when people ask what you're doing on any given evening, a simple "oh, I'm off to church", often sparks off a series of questions, which shows that there is interest there - it just has to be tapped into properly. People tend to react against anything forceful.

I have certainly found this. I am very trad English in most things, although my ethnic background is a blend of French, Irish and West Indian. Because of sterotypes, I am not the sort of person people (even Christians) expect to be giving serious thought to conversion to Orthodoxy.  Also, Anglicans of my tradition often go to Rome if they decide to leave Anglicaism - it is less common for Anglo-Catholics to swim the Bosphorus.  Because of this, I perhaps get approached more often than others would, out of interest. This offers good opportunities for evangelism, and I think that effective evangelism comes with the ability to discern these situations. I am nowhere near perfecting it, but am getting closer day by day, by the help of God.
« Last Edit: April 23, 2005, 06:06:45 AM by Michael » Logged
Justionios
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« Reply #4 on: April 23, 2005, 09:42:39 AM »

God bless you and thank you all for spending time on my inquiry,

Thank you Eleni , for your advice that all we can do is use prayers, Unfurtunatly that is the most dificult way for a sinner like me, I would love to have group so that we can pray together, if you got time over please pray for me the sinner and my nearby so that we can create an orthodox praying group in the town were I live.

Micheal I likes your sugestion an I do it when I am in Greece, but still in Sweden it is Usles though people will continue to belive that all churches are quite the same.

Ipap You are also right , I can not sent people by force to church and that is not what I meant , what i mean is to help them understand that they must go to orthodox church , many of them thinks that as long as it is christian it is the same, Many of the children is beeing baptised in protestants churches. Yes I now that the EP accepts protestand baptizes and Maybe I should care only for my self as you are telling Ipap, but I can't do it because evry time I hear that an orthodox is loosing his path, I fill it as that you put I knife in me.

In christ

« Last Edit: April 23, 2005, 09:44:38 AM by Justionios » Logged

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lpap
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« Reply #5 on: April 23, 2005, 04:52:35 PM »

Brother Justionios,

Do you see in the people you are referring to, that they become worst or better persons by entering in foreign churches?

First you have to start from the worst ones. Try to be their servant. Make them feel that you love them, not by words but by your actions. It may take years before they realize that you love them with the Love of Christ.

All that I wanted to tell you in my last post was that you must stop being in a hurry. Give God and people the time they need to come together. That is what I mean by saying that you can't force people into church. Christian faith is contagious and I understand your passion to “infect” It to others.

I see that you are living in a very personal way. I admire your zeal to make others feel the embracement of mother Church. Instead of that if you press too hard people may feel that you squeeze them.

It’s like saving a baby that is falling over from a window. If you grasp it too hard you may make more damage than good.

I do not blame your intentions, I just call your attention to absolutely respect other's freedom.
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choirfiend
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« Reply #6 on: April 23, 2005, 06:22:19 PM »

You can teach them that by living a Christian lifestyle in all ways. When someone states to you that they think the EOC thinks all churches are the same (or that it doesnt matter what church they go to) you will have the authority in their eyes as a practicing, loving, obediant, meek, non-combative Orthodox Christian to speak about what the Orthodox Church says about being a member of her. (P.S. Try to know the scriptures, attend every church service you can, and know about why the Orthodox Church believes what she does, too.)  But there is no reason to believe you over someone else (like there is no reason to believe any one Protestant interpretation over another) when you are not in the position of a truly practicing believer.


ps. I'm not saying you're not a believer...this is my opinion on how to lead people to the Church, however.
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Justionios
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« Reply #7 on: April 24, 2005, 06:05:41 AM »

Thank you for your advice both choirfiend and Ipap.

How is orthodoxy , in the part of the world that you live in ? Is it they same , as here ? Does people go to all churches. Iis it like in many place of the world where it is most the nationalist that goes to the orthodox church not because of their big faith but because it is Greek ,Serbian or Rumanian traditon.

How do you see that the church becomes something nationalistic ? I belive it is god that at least the greek and serb nationalist goes to church every easter, but what picture does this give to Swedes or other people that wan't to enter the church ?
Should we fight nationalism in church ? Or do you think that nationalism saves more souls than it looses ? I'm intrested of all views that this intrestant topic has ?

In Christ
« Last Edit: April 24, 2005, 01:40:32 PM by Justionios » Logged

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