Saturday, March 1, 2014

Revisionist History, Religious Freedom and Whistleblowing

Greetings and salutations.  It seems as if it’s been in eons since my last blog entry.  In some ways so much is changed and yet  still the same.  Quite by chance yesterday I received an email referring to a blog entry that I wrote in 2011. I had the opportunity to revisit some of the entries and consider the on going debate which considers the universal fight for religious freedom especially for our Ecumenical Patriarchate in Constantinople. On the home front much of my effort was spent challenging the warring against Hellenism, anomalies and innovative protocols and the revisionist history of “American Orthodox Churches” or the “Evangelical Orthodox”. Much of their continued propaganda has been to disparage and attack the sacred and holy traditions regarding administration and order of Orthodoxy. I willingly expended much effort along with many greater then I,  state-side and abroad, to fight the constant undercurrent of bashing those leaders, ministries and great churchmen and women who paved the way and who have become targets by such Johnny come lately types who view those ‘ethnics’ as  a mar on Orthodoxy and an inconvenience to the “great American orthodoxy” in their ineffectual and uncanonical power grab.

On a personal note since my last writings I have been busy with raising my wonderful children together with my husband;  advancing the cause of religious freedom through awareness locally, dispelling myths of superstition with this new orthodox fanaticism at one end and the protestant infection at the other. I have had the ability and continued blessing of growing my professional ministry specializing in marriage therapy, co dependence and public service work aimed at destigmatizing depression and providing educational resources for raising families in this ever encroaching digital era.  Orthodox Psychotherapy as a specialty has been my focal point and paradigm in dealing with such sensitive matters as sexual abuse and trauma.  I have been afforded the great opportunity to provide seminars and workshops to reach a broader community and to assist the under served Orthodox families in a manner which is holistic and mindful of the Neptic teachings. Lastly to my clients I consider it my great privilege work with individuals, couples and families in my private  clinical practice as they answer the more fundamental question of cause and purpose.

Such work has been a blessing unto itself but it has become clear to me that my work here on this blog affectionately called the Phanar District is not yet done.  There been several instances where I have been called on in a clinical capacity and subsequently as a mandated reporter I find myself uniquely poised to serve as a watchdog and whistle blower. This integrated approach with its micro and macro features requires some measure courage and attention to detail.

Unfortunately abuse and misconduct effects every community including our Orthodox community and therefore it necessitates a vocal advocate for victims of abuse even when perpetrators are among clerical ranks. Admittedly and thankfully such instances are far between but nonetheless have occurred.  

Most recently concerns are drawn closer to home. I am willing and compelled by compassion and love to have their stories told to voice what  may be considered unpopular or unseemly.  I am not deterred by the opinions of the mob or the polite sensibility of those who choose to look the other way while brother and sisters are potentially trampled.  I will not be silenced for all those who are lacking or maybe uncomfortable or frightened to speak out.

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