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  • Issac K Joseph
    Dear Moderators Let me share what I read today in one of the Christian forum. In Christ Isaac K Joseph Mar Thoman Church Mulanthruthy Member ID - 0917
    Message 1 of 3394 , Aug 21, 2005
      Dear Moderators

      Let me share what I read today in one of the Christian forum.

      In Christ
      Isaac K Joseph
      Mar Thoman Church
      Member ID - 0917

      Dear List:

      I know that we have it right as Orthodox Christians, and I want everyone to come to Orthodoxy. However, I think that coming to Orthodoxy because you are fed up with the shenanigans of your particular Church is very, very wrong. If you followed the actions at the Antiochian Church in Ben Lomond you'll understand what I am talking about.

      I have seen Protestants particularly come into the Orthodox Church dragging steamer trunks of incorrect thinking and attempting to overlay that methodology on an already complete Dogma. Why does this happen? It is because many outside the Church see us as the last stand of conservatism against the "women priests", "homosexual marriage", etc. Yes, we are against these ideas, but there is a whole basket full of concepts far more important that raging social issues of the time.

      Orthodoxy s not just a list of laws and regulations. Orthodoxy isn't "conservative", it is "traditional". We don't bash people with the Pedalion, as Protestants Bible bash. For that matter, the Pedalion wasn't written for lay folk, and its not a guide for the average, everyday Orthodox Christian. Yet. I have seen Pedalion Bashing on many lists, and always by converts. That's because they see the Pedalion as a Rule Book, like the RC Code of Canon Law, which it is not.

      I said that Orthodoxy was more than a rigid list of laws and regulationsÂ… because it is a way of thinking and a way of living much like the Japanese concept of "Do", or "Way". The worst Pharisees
      seem to come from amongst the convert crowd. My wife is a convert(former Protestant) and had a lot of difficulty with the lack of hard definitions. I remember her reading a book about "Toll Houses"
      written by a famous Orthodox author and telling me it was "doctrine" because Fr. "So and So" wrote it. When I tried to explain that such ideas were "theological speculation" she didn't really understand. We discussed how Orthodox Concepts were held captive by a western mindset. She had a hard time with the Orthodox concept of sin NOT being a failure, but rather a "missing the mark". I know that cradle Orthodox often know less about the Truths of their Faith, than do converts, but they have more of an Orthodox Spirit than those carrying a lot of Western Baggage.

      In discussions with my Priest, I have often expressed the idea that a very long catechumenate would be a good idea. It's the only way to be sure that non-Orthodox interpretations are going to be used by those coming into our Faith. He agrees, and in our parish it is not uncommon to see a year catechumenate with some going 18 months.

      It is difficult to grow up with one way of thinking and expect that in a few months, we can change those old patterns, because we can't. I grew up in the Faith, (GOA) but the Church that my Yiayia taught me about was different than the reality of the Church as I learned later. It was the overlay of her "superstitions" that clouded the issues. I have seen whole parishes made up of convert laity and convert clergy where there is an unhealthy mix of Orthodox Thought and Protestant, Ben Lomond is the classic example.

      It rough when the laity are not Ortho-minded, but its worse when the clergy have the steamer trunks of baggage attached to their Epitrachilion. Often times their sermons sound more like Jimmy Swaggart than an Orthodox Priest. I actually had one Priest in an Antiochian Church come to give his homily with a bible tucked under his arm, and he even spoke with that "tone"Â… Do You have a personal relationship with Jeeezus? Again it is this lack of Orthodox Thought Process that brought about the mess at Ben Lomond.

      Joining the Orthodox Church because you are upset at the actions of your particular Church is simply wrong. Join us because we have the fullness of Faith, the Perfection of Liturgy, but not because we have what appears to be a conservative social agenda.

      Eli Stamos
    • SOCM-FORUM@yahoogroups.com
      Dear honorable members Greetings in HIS name To keep the forum debate s authenticity, we the moderators of this forum, have decided to implement a new
      Message 3394 of 3394 , Oct 31
        Dear honorable members

        Greetings in HIS name

        To keep the forum debate's authenticity, we the moderators of this forum, have decided to implement a new guideline.

        As per the new guideline from 26th of October 2004, we will not publish any messages without proper signature. Your signature should contain full name, family name, home parish, present parish attending along with proper references like that of the parish priest's; name, e mail address and telephone number, where we can verify the genuineness of the e mails.

        After the verification of your identity, we will provide a member ID Number which can be used as your signature for future postings and by member ID numbers we can verify your mails. However, If you want your name to be withheld from the messages published, we will comply to your request and then only the ID number will be published.

        These personal contact details will be stored in our database and will not be published in the forum.

        However, if you are hesitant to reveal the name and identity, you can still be a member of the forum and get the daily digests in your e-mail id supplied, if you wish so.

        This new guideline is applicable to all members, regardless of their Christian denomination.

        We hope our members will appreciate it and cooperate with us.

        Be with us and be part of us.

        In Our Lords Love
        For & on behalf of
        SOCM-FORUM Moderators

        Chev. Thomas Daniel (Reji)
        St.George Jacobite Syrian Orthodox Church
        Cheppaud, Alleppy Dist, Kerala, India.
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