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An Open Letter to Orthodox Monasteries From The Faithful Children of The Orthodox Church of Jerusalem

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  • Bill Samsonoff
    http://theorthodoxchurch.info/blog/news/2013/06/an-open-letter-to-orthodox-monasteries-from-the-faithful-children-of-the-orthodox-church-of-jerusalem/ An Open
    Message 1 of 1 , Jun 26, 2013
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      http://theorthodoxchurch.info/blog/news/2013/06/an-open-letter-to-orthodox-monasteries-from-the-faithful-children-of-the-orthodox-church-of-jerusalem/

      An Open Letter to Orthodox Monasteries From The Faithful Children of The
      Orthodox Church of Jerusalem

      22/6/13

      “O Lord, O Lord, look down from heaven and behold, and visit this vine,
      and perfect that which Your right has planted”

      “In the world you will have tribulation;

      but be of a good cheer,

      I have overcome the world” (John 16:33)

      Our Fathers and Mothers in Christ; the Blessed Abbots and Abbesses,

      On the feast of the Holy Pentecost, we, the Faithful Children of the
      Orthodox Church of Jerusalem convey to you our greetings on this blessed
      feast, beseeching the Lord to keep you in good health and grant you
      grace and holiness.

      The Blessed Elder Paisios the Athonite points out in one of his letters
      that the monk distances himself from the world, not out of hatred, but
      out of love to the world. In this sense, through his prayer he will
      present more help to the world to resolve issues, that can’t be resolved
      by human effort, but only through divine intervention; and thus God
      saves the world. The monks, through their prayers, are steered by divine
      power, not by their illusive individual power. In view of our current
      time where evil prevails, we are in absolute need for divine
      intervention in our lives.

      Therefore, we write to you in the midst of this turbulent world and
      specifically, from the afflicted Middle East. Our hearts are grieving
      from the conflict, destruction and persecution that surround us
      constituting a threat to Christian existence in the region. Nonetheless,
      in view of our consciousness to the Church role in the salvation and
      sanctification of man and the entire universe, we deemed appropriate to
      address you and address all the Orthodox monasteries in the world, our
      messengers to God, holding onto the unity of our faith and love and
      communion in the Body of Christ. We ask you reverently to help us with
      your prayers to our Lord Jesus Christ for the sake of the Christians in
      the Middle East in general and our Orthodox Church of Jerusalem in
      particular.

      The status of our Greek Orthodox Church of Jerusalem, the sole national
      Church in Jordan and Palestine, has declined to an extreme degree of
      neglect and deterioration due to the cumulative lack of spiritual
      guidance and care, as well as the absence of any indicator of a
      spiritual renaissance; this has resulted in stagnation of the Church’s
      pastoral, spiritual, institutional and social activity. Throughout the
      years, this has also caused the departure of large numbers of Orthodox
      parishioners from their Mother Church to join churches, sects and
      heresies contrary to the spirit, doctrine and teachings of the Orthodox
      Church.

      Accordingly, there is an urgent need in our Church to nourish the
      monastic life by founding new monasteries and convents as well as
      admitting new male and female candidates to be tonsured in the monastic
      order in their respective countries, Jordan and Palestine, instead of
      travelling to other countries for such a monastic tonsure. Moreover, the
      existing monasteries of Palestine should be revived as several of these
      monasteries are without abbots, even without monks, and neither
      liturgical services nor spiritual activities are held in them, whereby
      most of such monasteries have only become places for selling souvenirs!
      How we hoped that such sacred places would become a beacon of spiritual
      and theological enlightenment in service of the Church members.

      Furthermore, our Church lacks having diocesan bishops heading their
      Churches with full ecclesiastical, pastoral and episcopal authorities.
      Therefore, there is an imperative necessity to implement the diocesan
      system in our Church, as foreseen in the Holy Canons, following the
      example of all other Orthodox Churches around the world. And to grant
      the bishop in each diocese his full ecclesiastical authority to carry
      out his obligations towards the faithful parishioners, and to enable him
      to represent his flock before the Holy Synod so that he may express
      their sufferings and needs and fulfill their expectations and demands.

      May your love and devotion allow us to place in your hands this message,
      which reflects our painful reality after having exhausted all
      ecclesiastical means to make our voice and the voices of many other
      priests, who were persecuted for speaking out the truth, heard by our
      ecclesiastical leadership but all in vain. However, our faith in God’s
      justice along with our justified spiritual ecclesiastical demands, which
      are of the ecclesiastical leadership obligation towards their entrusted
      souls of the faithful by virtue of the Holy Canons in our Holy Orthodox
      Church, has motivated us to write to you, reverently requesting your
      prayers in order to attain a full spiritual renaissance in our Greek
      Orthodox Church of Jerusalem.

      We also reverently request from you to pray to our Lord to protect and
      preserve the first and sole Orthodox Monastery in Jordan which was
      established twelve years ago, Monastery of the Theotokos The Life-Giving
      Spring for nuns, along with the sisterhood and the spiritual father: the
      founder of the monastery. And for the recognition and confirmation of
      the internal bylaws of the monastery, in order, to continue the monastic
      journey on the principles and regulations of cenobitic life and to keep
      this Holy Monastery as a beacon radiating its spirituality to all believers.

      We all uphold the faith that your constant prayers shall surround us
      like a protective barrier against the visible and invisible enemies, so
      that we may surpass with prayer, faith and hope the path of the cross to
      the resurrection of our Orthodox Church of Jerusalem with our Lord, God
      and Saviour Jesus Christ who has risen from the dead. Thus, enjoy the
      prospective spiritual renaissance so that our Church may regain its lost
      ecclesiastical and monastic brilliance, and its distinguished position
      as the Mother Church, and as source of spiritual enlightenment for the
      entire world.

      We thank your love and support, raising our hearts in prayers with you!

      Asking for your blessings and prayers

      The Faithful Children of the Orthodox Church of Jerusalem

      in Jordan and Palestine

      The Feast of the Holy Pentecost – 2013
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