Monday, June 22, 2009

culture warrior

The culture of Orthodoxy-- 'Culture Warrior’

I feel for converts both lay and clergy who find themselves in the OCA. It makes a forum for authentic objectivity or reasonable thought a virtual impossibility and improbable for sure. It is the big tent mentality of progressivism where everyone is welcome to the OCA and together with a splinter group from the GOA laity they wish to do away with anything ethnic or any ties to the traditional church replacing it rather with a culture of nihilism.
It is an awkward place where words like perogy (sorry for misspelling) are whispered and baklava may even be banned. Ok I jest but there is truth to this story. When you sign up emotionally and faithfully to the one true faith in an organization which from its inception unilaterally declared its autonomy from its own mother church and continues to claim it is the only venue for the convert or new believer is a difficult place for sure. The autonomy of the OCA is hardly recognized let alone legitimate. You cannot legitimize what is counterfeit. It should find itself a more humbler more grateful community which has not been cut off as it were.
Now somehow emboldened by its cleaning up after the old guard’s debacle of misappropriation of funds which spanned decades this regime disassociates itself from such wrong doings and with new arrogance perceives itself incorrectly as anointed. The leadership and various vocal laity and clergy are drafting carefully worded speeches to right the wrongs and discount their shady past. They are claiming their 'rights' are not being addressed and they are not being ministered to. They whine incessantly about being unfairly treated. They want leadership status for a group in many ways unsanctioned leadership plagued with defiance and controversy. Rebellion the great sin hidden behind a veil of false piety. They perceive themselves as the last great hope for the indigenous peoples and all catecumens alike.
The OCA do not claim to bear any responsibility in assisting the struggling churches abroad as they attempt to take the new world for themselves. Their finger wagging serves to distract from their unsubstantiated claims. They choose rather to attack the likes of me unable to take on the true debate with more capable official advocates. This doesn't keep their leadership and splinter groups from publicly ridiculing other jurisdictions, more powerful jurisdictions, as the OCA falters between attack and apology. They attempt to publicly diffuse the situation while the other hand is drafting more rhetoric.
There well may come a time a day when there is an America Patriarch when the OCA will be invited perhaps to play a role in that process but it will not come as a result of pressure or rhetoric. It will not come from some group who decided of themselves what they can or cannot do. The clerical leadership belong to an order and obedience is rule one.
The Ecumenical Throne will not be some trophy they can claim in their quest to be legitimate. Ishmael will never have the birthright of Isaac. In the unlikely event that the church decides to establish patriarchates I petition patriarchs for Cuba, Nicaragua, Canada, Texas gets their own, and let’s give one to Cameroon and Uganda.


jcoolio said...

So where does all this (supposing that what you have written is true) leave myself, an Orthodox Catechumen in an OCA Church? Am I branded a heretic? Am I to forsake my bishop (bishop Job) or my Priest (Father Joshua)?

I most likely do not understand at all what is going on or what is at stake. I apologize for my ignorance and forgive any tone that may appear in my comments. But like I said, what am I to do in the midst of all this?


elgreca262 said...

First, welcome as you embark on you spiritual journey. Orthodoxy as you are learning is the most complete understanding of instruction on the truth and Christian living that has been revealed. Stick close to our ancient church fathers St. Gregorty the Theologian, St. Basil the Great, St. John Chrysostomo, St Gregory Palamas, etc.and the lives of saints. The more ancient the text the more time tested. Man brought corruption into the world and the church every church and organization has its challenges. Trust that God has chosen you out as one of his own and will lead you to the correct path. I will worship in any canonically orthodox church. If the status of the church changes then I don't return. I am not interested in a parody of the truth but the truth. In the Orthodox Church remember the creed One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. I pledge my allegiance the Eucmenical Patriarchate which can trace back its apostolic succession to Andrew the First Called. I trust in the succession of the five original churches. This is were history becomes invaluable. Stick close with your priest and move ahead with your quest for the crown of salvation. Discernment about what is true will come as one of the gifts which is already at work in you. If you would like to talk more privately drop me an email at