Author Topic: Parish Priest Behavior and Church Disenchantment  (Read 13703 times)

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Offline Saxon

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Re: Parish Priest Behavior and Church Disenchantment
« Reply #135 on: March 09, 2019, 12:56:56 PM »
I can't dispute any of that, I don't have the experience to and likely wouldn't want to even if I did, but the question I want to ask you is- is there anywhere better?

Is there any denomination, any religion, any worldview that doesn't often wind up putting cultural or political aspects ahead of its loftier teachings and aspirations? Isn't that just part of life among frail humanity?

I don't know, that's the question I'm asking myself right now. I'm disgusted and livid. I'm waiting until I calm down before I start making decisions on how to go forward, but at the moment, I would like to take every icon I have in my home and snap it in half. The problem isn't isolated to this parish and the cretins who attend it. Archbishop Gabriel and several other people in the ROCOR hierarchy are well aware of what happened (and is continuing to happen) and won't act. Useless, spineless bunch. If I wanted to be part of a church that ignores degenerate priests who ruin peoples' lives, then I'd turn to Catholicism. But apparently it makes no difference wherever one is in the Christian milieu.

Offline PorphyriosK

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Re: Parish Priest Behavior and Church Disenchantment
« Reply #136 on: March 09, 2019, 01:08:47 PM »
I can't dispute any of that, I don't have the experience to and likely wouldn't want to even if I did, but the question I want to ask you is- is there anywhere better?

Is there any denomination, any religion, any worldview that doesn't often wind up putting cultural or political aspects ahead of its loftier teachings and aspirations? Isn't that just part of life among frail humanity?

I don't know, that's the question I'm asking myself right now. I'm disgusted and livid. I'm waiting until I calm down before I start making decisions on how to go forward, but at the moment, I would like to take every icon I have in my home and snap it in half. The problem isn't isolated to this parish and the cretins who attend it. Archbishop Gabriel and several other people in the ROCOR hierarchy are well aware of what happened (and is continuing to happen) and won't act. Useless, spineless bunch. If I wanted to be part of a church that ignores degenerate priests who ruin peoples' lives, then I'd turn to Catholicism. But apparently it makes no difference wherever one is in the Christian milieu.

If you want freedom and peace for your soul, forgive them all, then forget the whole thing and move on.  You've done all you can and made everything known to the right authorities.  It's all on them now.  Relieve yourself of the burden to make everything right.  God will do that, in His own way and His own time.  Ignore hypocrites and leave all those people to God's mercy and justice and focus on your own sinfulness and need for Christ.  You'll recover your peace.
"When you don’t live with Christ, you live in melancholy, in sorrow, in anxiety and in worry. You don’t live properly… The best medicine is to devote yourself to the worship of Christ. Everything is cured. Everything works properly."

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Offline Volnutt

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Re: Parish Priest Behavior and Church Disenchantment
« Reply #137 on: March 09, 2019, 01:13:20 PM »
I can't dispute any of that, I don't have the experience to and likely wouldn't want to even if I did, but the question I want to ask you is- is there anywhere better?

Is there any denomination, any religion, any worldview that doesn't often wind up putting cultural or political aspects ahead of its loftier teachings and aspirations? Isn't that just part of life among frail humanity?

I don't know, that's the question I'm asking myself right now. I'm disgusted and livid. I'm waiting until I calm down before I start making decisions on how to go forward, but at the moment, I would like to take every icon I have in my home and snap it in half. The problem isn't isolated to this parish and the cretins who attend it. Archbishop Gabriel and several other people in the ROCOR hierarchy are well aware of what happened (and is continuing to happen) and won't act. Useless, spineless bunch. If I wanted to be part of a church that ignores degenerate priests who ruin peoples' lives, then I'd turn to Catholicism. But apparently it makes no difference wherever one is in the Christian milieu in organized religion in human culture.

Fixed it for you (twice).

Regardless though, I'm so sorry you have to go through this and for what it's still worth, I'm praying for you.
Christ my God, set my heart on fire with love in You, that in its flame I may love You with all my heart, with all my mind, and with all my soul and with all my strength, and my neighbor as myself, so that by keeping Your commandments I may glorify You the Giver of every good and perfect gift. Amen.

Offline Alpha60

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Re: Parish Priest Behavior and Church Disenchantment
« Reply #138 on: March 09, 2019, 03:05:48 PM »
I can't dispute any of that, I don't have the experience to and likely wouldn't want to even if I did, but the question I want to ask you is- is there anywhere better?

Is there any denomination, any religion, any worldview that doesn't often wind up putting cultural or political aspects ahead of its loftier teachings and aspirations? Isn't that just part of life among frail humanity?

I don't know, that's the question I'm asking myself right now. I'm disgusted and livid. I'm waiting until I calm down before I start making decisions on how to go forward, but at the moment, I would like to take every icon I have in my home and snap it in half. The problem isn't isolated to this parish and the cretins who attend it. Archbishop Gabriel and several other people in the ROCOR hierarchy are well aware of what happened (and is continuing to happen) and won't act. Useless, spineless bunch. If I wanted to be part of a church that ignores degenerate priests who ruin peoples' lives, then I'd turn to Catholicism. But apparently it makes no difference wherever one is in the Christian milieu in organized religion in human culture.

Fixed it for you (twice).

Regardless though, I'm so sorry you have to go through this and for what it's still worth, I'm praying for you.

+1

There are other Orthodox churches.  The OCA probably has the most advanced safeguards against abuse of any North American Orthodox Church.

Council of Nicea:
Εθη ἀρχαῖα κρατείτω. 
Mores antiqui obtineant.
The ancient ways shall prevail.

The sentiment of Nicea in Greek and Latin, translated into English.

Offline Saxon

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Re: Parish Priest Behavior and Church Disenchantment
« Reply #139 on: March 09, 2019, 03:40:04 PM »
I can't dispute any of that, I don't have the experience to and likely wouldn't want to even if I did, but the question I want to ask you is- is there anywhere better?

Is there any denomination, any religion, any worldview that doesn't often wind up putting cultural or political aspects ahead of its loftier teachings and aspirations? Isn't that just part of life among frail humanity?


I don't know, that's the question I'm asking myself right now. I'm disgusted and livid. I'm waiting until I calm down before I start making decisions on how to go forward, but at the moment, I would like to take every icon I have in my home and snap it in half. The problem isn't isolated to this parish and the cretins who attend it. Archbishop Gabriel and several other people in the ROCOR hierarchy are well aware of what happened (and is continuing to happen) and won't act. Useless, spineless bunch. If I wanted to be part of a church that ignores degenerate priests who ruin peoples' lives, then I'd turn to Catholicism. But apparently it makes no difference wherever one is in the Christian milieu in organized religion in human culture.

Fixed it for you (twice).

Regardless though, I'm so sorry you have to go through this and for what it's still worth, I'm praying for you.

+1

There are other Orthodox churches.  The OCA probably has the most advanced safeguards against abuse of any North American Orthodox Church.

I’m not disputing that, and full credit to the OCA parish I’ve been attending for the past few months - almost without exception, everyone has been great. But I cannot get past my experience at the ROCOR parish. Virtually everyone from the priest on down at that church is the definition of a scumbag. Even when I met with the junior priest, he was more interested in telling me that I’m now no longer allowed to be ordained as I’m the product of a failed marriage (I also wil not accept any faith with a rule like that). I can’t become a priest because I’m divorced, and ironically in large part because of what a priest did, but a priest who steals money and beat people is allowed to carry on, and people who know what he does still hang out and drink with him? I almost can’t get my head around what a trainwreck the Orthodox Church is.

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Re: Parish Priest Behavior and Church Disenchantment
« Reply #140 on: March 09, 2019, 04:27:59 PM »
Which is why it’s a bloody miracle that the Church has survived all the persecutions it has.

It’s a ship run by fools and morons who can’t see three feet in front of them, but whose Captain is Christ.
"I go to seek a Great Perhaps."

Offline Sethrak

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Re: Parish Priest Behavior and Church Disenchantment
« Reply #141 on: March 09, 2019, 04:47:28 PM »
Greeting Saxon ~ what an experience you've had ~ could be made into a movie ~ the people of the parish want to stay below the radar ~ would like to have the animal checked ~ don't want to run out front ~ I guess you have to expect that ~ takes a certain amount of courage ~ not everyone has that ```

Glad you came by to update ~ I don't think there are any limitations on you as far as the Church is concerned ```

I'm going to read a bit more of this thread ~ just read a couple snips before posting ```

I know you feel like you've been pulled backwards through a hedge ~ but ~ don't let the insane shade your closeness to the Lord or the Church ~ we run into some strange ones who have somehow gotten in a position of control ~ if we let ourselves recoil from their ugliness and spite ~ where can we go ```

Gather together Christians and worship Our Lord is the Orthodox Custom where the wicked are not ~ of course you could help those parish members who would like to have that rotten bully of a now priest censured or removed ~ that sounds like what they would like ~ or if you've tried and there is no response ~ move on ~ I know it's hard ```

Lord strengthen our brother ~ hold him close ~ heal ```
Իմաստութիւն Հոր Յիսուս՝ տո՝ւր մեզ իաստուփին՝ զբարիս խորհել եւ խոսել եւ գործել առաջի Քո յամենայն ժամ : եւ ի չար խորհրդոց ի բանից եւ ի գործոց   փրկեա  զմեզ՝ ամէն:
Jesus, Wisdom of the Father, give us wisdom, to think, speak and do what is Good before you at all times. And save us from evil thoughts, words and deed, amen.

Offline rakovsky

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Re: Parish Priest Behavior and Church Disenchantment
« Reply #142 on: November 18, 2019, 02:53:15 AM »
I’m not disputing that, and full credit to the OCA parish I’ve been attending for the past few months - almost without exception, everyone has been great. But I cannot get past my experience at the ROCOR parish. Virtually everyone from the priest on down at that church is the definition of a scumbag.
I don't know the situation there. Maybe sometimes it happens that everyone at a church is a scumbag, but I'd like to think it is rare. A church in a way is a religious microcosm of a broader community or even population. I don't know if one can generalize about every person like that. Maybe sometimes big groups really can be bad to a man. That was God's impression about Sodom and Gomorrah it seemed.
The ocean, infinite to men, and the worlds beyond it, are directed by the same ordinances of the Lord. ~ I Clement 20

Offline IreneOlinyk

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Re: Parish Priest Behavior and Church Disenchantment
« Reply #143 on: November 19, 2019, 07:58:58 PM »
Saxon, it has been over 6 months since you posted in this thread.  How are you doing?  How are the people in your new OCA parish treating you?  Are you singing in the choir or other activity in your parish.
Hoping all is well with you.

Offline SolEX01

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Re: Parish Priest Behavior and Church Disenchantment
« Reply #144 on: November 19, 2019, 08:10:10 PM »
Every church has its malcontents.  When I attend the Russian Festival, I cringe at having to deal with drunken Russians.  Having a shot of vodka usually relaxes the nerves.

When I worked at my church's festival, I cringed when I had to hand out warm beers to customers.  For my sanity, I stopped working at the church festival.

Offline isxodnik

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Re: Parish Priest Behavior and Church Disenchantment
« Reply #145 on: November 19, 2019, 08:23:00 PM »
When I attend the Russian Festival, I cringe at having to deal with drunken Russians.  Having a shot of vodka usually relaxes the nerves.

Thanks for reminding me, man! ))
нечестивый да сквернится ещё

Offline Jude1:3

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Re: Parish Priest Behavior and Church Disenchantment
« Reply #146 on: November 20, 2019, 11:07:29 AM »
  For my sanity, I stopped working at the church festival.

^^^ This ^^^

I had to work with a really jerky person while grilling the lamb during Pascha last year.

 I forgive the person but I don't want to be around him or have any interaction with him.
« Last Edit: November 20, 2019, 11:09:56 AM by Jude1:3 »

Offline Alpha60

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Re: Parish Priest Behavior and Church Disenchantment
« Reply #147 on: November 20, 2019, 07:52:33 PM »
Every church has its malcontents.  When I attend the Russian Festival, I cringe at having to deal with drunken Russians.  Having a shot of vodka usually relaxes the nerves.

When I worked at my church's festival, I cringed when I had to hand out warm beers to customers.  For my sanity, I stopped working at the church festival.

ROFL!  I love the irony of you drinking vodka due to being annoyed by drunk people.  Doubtless one person initially drank a vodka and it sort of spread through the festival like a contagion...  :P

Seriously though I myself have no qualms about church festivals and have not seen any bad behavior at them.

Council of Nicea:
Εθη ἀρχαῖα κρατείτω. 
Mores antiqui obtineant.
The ancient ways shall prevail.

The sentiment of Nicea in Greek and Latin, translated into English.

Offline SolEX01

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Re: Parish Priest Behavior and Church Disenchantment
« Reply #148 on: November 20, 2019, 10:58:45 PM »
Every church has its malcontents.  When I attend the Russian Festival, I cringe at having to deal with drunken Russians.  Having a shot of vodka usually relaxes the nerves.

When I worked at my church's festival, I cringed when I had to hand out warm beers to customers.  For my sanity, I stopped working at the church festival.

ROFL!  I love the irony of you drinking vodka due to being annoyed by drunk people.  Doubtless one person initially drank a vodka and it sort of spread through the festival like a contagion...  :P

Seriously though I myself have no qualms about church festivals and have not seen any bad behavior at them.

When in Rome ... or when attending a Russian Festival....

I attended a picnic which used to have beer trucks.  One year, things got out of hand with fights and brawls and the township refused to give the picnic organizers a license to sell beer.  That doesn't stop them from bringing in all kinds of canned beer although the number of participants has dwindled throughout the years.

Offline sheep100

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Re: Parish Priest Behavior and Church Disenchantment
« Reply #149 on: November 26, 2019, 09:19:53 PM »
Focus on your own salvation.....forgive and stop judging . Alot of your posts seem to be how can I be in a Church with such a sinner. I know you've been offended but you need to forgive.
Please forgive my sins brothers and sisters especially anything hateful I have said about anyone or any group!

Offline Saxon

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Re: Parish Priest Behavior and Church Disenchantment
« Reply #150 on: November 28, 2019, 11:51:27 AM »
Saxon, it has been over 6 months since you posted in this thread.  How are you doing?  How are the people in your new OCA parish treating you?  Are you singing in the choir or other activity in your parish.
Hoping all is well with you.

Hello Irene,

I'm doing well thanks, relatively speaking. My OCA parish has been wonderful and very supportive from the top-down. A place to learn and grow in the faith. It's the Orthodox milieu I wish I had to begin with.

I still deal with intense bitterness/anger towards my former priest. The realization that that blow to the head could have killed me doesn't create much incentive to forgive, let alone what came after for me personally largely as a result of it. I still have friends in ROCOR and occasionally see photos of him at various church events. Unfortunately the ROCOR community here in Ontario is very tight-nit, so he gets around. I met with some ROCOR clergy from the area and was surprised to learn that he's universally regarded as a drunken oaf and a problem, but as long as the Archbishop lets him get away with it, he can keep showing his face in clerical garb. He was recently at the 70th anniversary celebration for Holy Trinity Cathedral in Toronto. He still has a few friends and sycophants, but the majority of people who continue to associate with him or go to his parish do it because it's the church they're familiar with, rather than out of any personal devotion to him as a priest or as a friend.

My current parish priest contextualized it very effectively, essentially telling me not to conflate the Orthodox faith with the institution of ROCOR, as the latter doesn't speak for Orthodoxy. He also asked point blank what benefits are brought to me by remaining in contact with people who continue to associate with him (yet denigrate him behind his back). The answer was none. So I severed contact with those in question and feel like I removed a toxic element from my life, which has also been helpful. I still deal with episodes where I'm tempted to abandon the Church, largely whenever the old priest's face or name comes up, but those episodes are fewer and further between and I feel better equipped to deal with them now.

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Re: Parish Priest Behavior and Church Disenchantment
« Reply #151 on: November 28, 2019, 12:05:41 PM »
Quote
those episodes are fewer and further between and I feel better equipped to deal with them now.

Glory to Our God.
Happy shall he be, that shall take and dash thy little ones against the rock. Alleluia.

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Re: Parish Priest Behavior and Church Disenchantment
« Reply #152 on: November 28, 2019, 01:03:18 PM »
Saxon, it has been over 6 months since you posted in this thread.  How are you doing?  How are the people in your new OCA parish treating you?  Are you singing in the choir or other activity in your parish.
Hoping all is well with you.

Hello Irene,

I'm doing well thanks, relatively speaking. My OCA parish has been wonderful and very supportive from the top-down. A place to learn and grow in the faith. It's the Orthodox milieu I wish I had to begin with.

I still deal with intense bitterness/anger towards my former priest. The realization that that blow to the head could have killed me doesn't create much incentive to forgive, let alone what came after for me personally largely as a result of it. I still have friends in ROCOR and occasionally see photos of him at various church events. Unfortunately the ROCOR community here in Ontario is very tight-nit, so he gets around. I met with some ROCOR clergy from the area and was surprised to learn that he's universally regarded as a drunken oaf and a problem, but as long as the Archbishop lets him get away with it, he can keep showing his face in clerical garb. He was recently at the 70th anniversary celebration for Holy Trinity Cathedral in Toronto. He still has a few friends and sycophants, but the majority of people who continue to associate with him or go to his parish do it because it's the church they're familiar with, rather than out of any personal devotion to him as a priest or as a friend.

My current parish priest contextualized it very effectively, essentially telling me not to conflate the Orthodox faith with the institution of ROCOR, as the latter doesn't speak for Orthodoxy. He also asked point blank what benefits are brought to me by remaining in contact with people who continue to associate with him (yet denigrate him behind his back). The answer was none. So I severed contact with those in question and feel like I removed a toxic element from my life, which has also been helpful. I still deal with episodes where I'm tempted to abandon the Church, largely whenever the old priest's face or name comes up, but those episodes are fewer and further between and I feel better equipped to deal with them now.

Hey I hope you OVERCOME and that this Works out in your favor.
Holy and God-bearing father, Macarius, through the Power of the All-pervading prayer - Pray to God for us. Amen

Offline Ainnir

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Re: Parish Priest Behavior and Church Disenchantment
« Reply #153 on: November 28, 2019, 02:07:12 PM »
Glory to God.  Lord, continue to have mercy.
Is any of the above Orthodox?  I have no idea, so there’s that.

Pray for me, a sinner.