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Re: [orthodox-synod] The Mission of the Church Abroad?

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  • Stephen Reske
    ... Indeed He is Risen! Thank you for your reply, father. I do have a few questions though. ... Yes, of course. I wonder though...are liturgical language,
    Message 1 of 19 , May 1, 2004
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      --- "Fr. John R. Shaw" <vrvrevjrsxexecpcom> wrote:
      >
      > X.B.!

      Indeed He is Risen!
      Thank you for your reply, father. I do have a few
      questions though.

      >
      > JRJRSTo begin with, remember that ROROCORoes stand
      > for "Russian
      > Orthodox Church Outside Russia".

      Yes, of course. I wonder though...are liturgical
      language, Russian sermons, and a seeming lack of
      desire to engage with your neighbors all
      nenecessitiesf being part of the Russian Church? St.
      Herman seemed to do a decent job of remaining
      perfectly in the Russia tradition while preaching to
      his neighbors and communicating in their language.

      > ROROCORs not simply an American Church: it is an
      > international Church,
      > and Russian roots are what bind it together.
      >

      Fair enough. The Russian Church which, in reality,
      has no real ties to Russia anymore.

      > Yes, Russians only half-understand Church Slavonic,
      > *unless they have
      > been taught Slavonic*.


      > Before the revolution, all primary and secondary
      > schools in Russia
      > taught at least the beginnings of Church Slavonic,
      > just as Slavonic
      > used to be taught in schools in Serbia and Bulgaria,
      > before the
      > communist period.

      Father, when I woke up this morning I couldn't help
      but notice I'm living in the year 2004 and that my
      neighbors primarily speak English here in America. Are
      you suggesting American and European converts should
      learn Church Slavonic in order to fully participate in
      Divine Services?

      > But people who are active in the Church usually do
      > have some knowledge
      > of Slavonic. Thus for example many Slavonic
      > expressions have been taken
      > over into modern Russian, such as "VoVorvremjanono
      > (the usual beginning
      > of Gospel readings).

      Yes, in Russian...and not many expressions, at that.



      > But then, the King James Bible is much more recent
      > than Church
      > Slavonic, is still considered "modern English", but
      > people have to get
      > used to it also.

      Indeed they do, but it is still recognizable
      English. Russians can understand what, 60% of Slavonic
      services? How about not Russian speakers, 0%?

      > And again, the actual *content* of our liturgical
      > texts is neither
      > simple nor easily understood, in any language. Quite
      > often hearing
      > these texts in English only gives a feeling that the
      > language is
      > English -- not any immediate insight into the
      > meaning!

      If the services are that difficult to comprehend in
      English, why make it more difficult with Slavonic?

      > Furthermore, Western people, including Americans, of
      > non-Orthodox
      > background, have no problem following a service in a
      > book. This was the
      > general practice among Roman Catholics when the Mass
      > was in Latin!
      > Russians, on the other hand, do not feel at home
      > trying to use books in
      > church.

      What do the former practices of the Roman Catholic
      Church have to do with the Orthodox idea of mission?
      SS Cyril and MeMethodiusSt. Herman, et alalwere not
      creating bi-lingual prayer books and telling converts
      to "make do".


      > JRJRSMany? That means you are aware he does
      > sometimes use English too.
      > The answer to the question is that many of the
      > listeners speak Russian
      > as a first, or perhaps only, language.

      Quite frankly, many Russians in America and Europe
      can speak English. If they are living and working
      here, chances are they are able to grasp the language.
      If sermons are given in Russian though because a
      clergyman believes it will be more edifying for his
      primarily Russian speaking flock, that clergyman
      should understand that it is the equivalent to putting
      a "not welcome" sign on the door for inquirers.

      > Our churches today are packed with new people from
      > Russia. These people
      > are often like children in their approach to the
      > Church. The American
      > converts and "interested non-Orthodox" usually have
      > an entirely
      > different psychological outlook, and come already
      > prepared to hear
      > another language.

      I know many Russians in the OCOCAho have no problem
      with English as a liturgical language. Like I said
      before, they are living, working, and raising families
      here and are learning or already able to understand
      the language. Should Americans "be prepared" to hear
      another language in the Orthodox Churches, or should
      the Russians/Greeks, etc. be prepared to hear the
      language of their new countries? If you believe
      Russians won't come to a church with non-Slavonic
      services, I can't agree- I've seen many, many Russians
      at all English parishes doing just fine. Why the fear
      of Russians not being interested, but not of
      Americans/Europeans not being interested in foreign
      language services?

      >
      > They know where they have come -- and why!

      Yes, and that may be why you get some strange birds
      and rurussophilesttending all Slavonic services, while
      it seems some more "adjusted" folk have the good sense
      to attend services they can understand.


      > That is why even non-Orthodox seminaries teach New
      > Testament Greek to
      > their students: because a translation never gives
      > you every nuance of
      > the original!

      That is fine for academia, and should be
      encouraged. But, when has this ever been the norm for
      the average Orthodox parishioner? What enenlightenersf
      new lands have told the people "learn the
      Greek/Slavonic, after a 10 years you'll really
      appreciate the nuances!" Also, if you're saying that
      translations don't give the correct "nuances", perhaps
      the Russian parishes should start using Greek, as they
      are only working from translations.
      >
      > But remember this, that before Vatican II, Roman
      > Catholic seminarians
      > had to learn to speak and write Latin fluently.

      Again, what do the practices of the Roman Church
      have to do with the Orthodox?

      > Latin is not a modern spoken language. Nobody speaks
      > it except
      > scholars.

      > But it was (to some extent may still be) a valuable
      > "lingua frfrancafor
      > priests.

      If priests want to learn it, that's fine. The average
      "Joe" or even "Ivan" shouldn't be required to take up
      linguistics classes of a 9th century Bulgarian dialect
      in order to worship properly.



      > Perhaps some day you will take a vacation to Europe.
      > Munich may be
      > Munich to you, but if you go to the Russian churches
      > there, you will
      > feel that you are at home.

      Yes, I have felt at home in Russian churches, in
      Russia. This is true. But why don't Russians in
      Western Europe and America feel at home then with
      English services?

      > The truth is that due to its international
      > character, ROROCORses
      > Russian as a "lingua frfranca and in my days at
      > JoJordanvillewe had
      > students from other countries who did not speak
      > English, or only spoke
      > it poorly -- but who were at home conversing with
      > one another in
      > Russian.

      This does make sense to me.


      > Fr. John R. Shaw

      Thank you father for your response. I do not mean to
      come across as rude or confrontational, but this is an
      issue that I have personally been wrestling with.




      __________________________________
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    • Stephen Reske
      ... Indeed He is Risen! Thank you for your reply, father. I do have a few questions though. ... Yes, of course. I wonder though...are liturgical language,
      Message 2 of 19 , May 2, 2004
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        ---- "Fr. John R. Shaw" <vrvrevjrsxexecpcom> wrote:
        >
        > X.B.!

        Indeed He is Risen!
        Thank you for your reply, father. I do have a few
        questions though.

        >
        > To begin with, remember that ROCOR stands
        > for "Russian
        > Orthodox Church Outside Russia".

        Yes, of course. I wonder though...are liturgical
        language, Russian sermons, and a seeming lack of
        desire to engage with your neighbors all
        nenecessitiesf being part of the Russian Church? St.
        Herman seemed to do a decent job of remaining
        perfectly in the Russia tradition while preaching to
        his neighbors and communicating in their language.

        > ROCOR is not simply an American Church: it is an
        > international Church,
        > and Russian roots are what bind it together.
        >

        Fair enough. The Russian Church which, in reality,
        has no real ties to Russia anymore.

        > Yes, Russians only half-understand Church Slavonic,
        > *unless they have
        > been taught Slavonic*.


        > Before the revolution, all primary and secondary
        > schools in Russia
        > taught at least the beginnings of Church Slavonic,
        > just as Slavonic
        > used to be taught in schools in Serbia and Bulgaria,
        > before the
        > communist period.

        Father, when I woke up this morning I couldn't help
        but notice I'm living in the year 2004 and that my
        neighbors primarily speak English here in America. Are
        you suggesting American and European converts should
        learn Church Slavonic in order to fully participate in
        Divine Services?

        > But people who are active in the Church usually do
        > have some knowledge
        > of Slavonic. Thus for example many Slavonic
        > expressions have been taken
        > over into modern Russian, such as "VoVorvremjanono
        > (the usual beginning
        > of Gospel readings).

        Yes, in Russian...and not many expressions, at that.



        > But then, the King James Bible is much more recent
        > than Church
        > Slavonic, is still considered "modern English", but
        > people have to get
        > used to it also.

        Indeed they do, but it is still recognizable
        English. Russians can understand what, 60% of Slavonic
        services? How about not Russian speakers, 0%?

        > And again, the actual *content* of our liturgical
        > texts is neither
        > simple nor easily understood, in any language. Quite
        > often hearing
        > these texts in English only gives a feeling that the
        > language is
        > English -- not any immediate insight into the
        > meaning!

        If the services are that difficult to comprehend in
        English, why make it more difficult with Slavonic?

        > Furthermore, Western people, including Americans, of
        > non-Orthodox
        > background, have no problem following a service in a
        > book. This was the
        > general practice among Roman Catholics when the Mass
        > was in Latin!
        > Russians, on the other hand, do not feel at home
        > trying to use books in
        > church.

        What do the former practices of the Roman Catholic
        Church have to do with the Orthodox idea of mission?
        SS Cyril and Methodius, St. Herman, et al were not
        creating bi-lingual prayer books and telling converts
        to "make do".


        > Many? That means you are aware he does
        > sometimes use English too.
        > The answer to the question is that many of the
        > listeners speak Russian
        > as a first, or perhaps only, language.

        Quite frankly, many Russians in America and Europe
        can speak English. If they are living and working
        here, chances are they are able to grasp the language.
        If sermons are given in Russian though because a
        clergyman believes it will be more edifying for his
        primarily Russian speaking flock, that clergyman
        should understand that it is the equivalent to putting
        a "not welcome" sign on the door for inquirers.

        > Our churches today are packed with new people from
        > Russia. These people
        > are often like children in their approach to the
        > Church. The American
        > converts and "interested non-Orthodox" usually have
        > an entirely
        > different psychological outlook, and come already
        > prepared to hear
        > another language.

        I know many Russians in the OCA who have no problem
        with English as a liturgical language. Like I said
        before, they are living, working, and raising families
        here and are learning or already able to understand
        the language. Should Americans "be prepared" to hear
        another language in the Orthodox Churches, or should
        the Russians/Greeks, etc. be prepared to hear the
        language of their new countries? If you believe
        Russians won't come to a church with non-Slavonic
        services, I can't agree- I've seen many, many Russians
        at all English parishes doing just fine. Why the fear
        of Russians not being interested, but not of
        Americans/Europeans not being interested in foreign
        language services?

        >
        > They know where they have come -- and why!

        Yes, and that may be why you get some strange birds
        and rusophiles attending all Slavonic services, while
        it seems some more "adjusted" folk have the good sense
        to attend services they can understand.


        > That is why even non-Orthodox seminaries teach New
        > Testament Greek to
        > their students: because a translation never gives
        > you every nuance of
        > the original!

        That is fine for academia, and should be
        encouraged. But, when has this ever been the norm for
        the average Orthodox parishioner? What enenlighteners
        of new lands have told the people "learn the
        Greek/Slavonic, after 10 years you'll really
        appreciate the nuances!" Also, if you're saying that
        translations don't give the correct "nuances", perhaps
        the Russian parishes should start using Greek, as they
        are only working from translations.
        >
        > But remember this, that before Vatican II, Roman
        > Catholic seminarians
        > had to learn to speak and write Latin fluently.

        Again, what do the practices of the Roman Church
        have to do with the Orthodox?

        > Latin is not a modern spoken language. Nobody speaks
        > it except
        > scholars.

        > But it was (to some extent may still be) a valuable
        > "lingua frfrancafor
        > priests.

        If priests want to learn it, that's fine. The average
        "Joe" or even "Ivan" shouldn't be required to take up
        linguistics classes of a 9th century Bulgarian dialect
        in order to worship properly.



        > Perhaps some day you will take a vacation to Europe.
        > Munich may be
        > Munich to you, but if you go to the Russian churches
        > there, you will
        > feel that you are at home.

        Yes, I have felt at home in Russian churches, in
        Russia. This is true. But why don't Russians in
        Western Europe and America feel at home then with
        English services?

        > The truth is that due to its international
        > character, ROROCORses
        > Russian as a "lingua frfranca and in my days at
        > JoJordanvillewe had
        > students from other countries who did not speak
        > English, or only spoke
        > it poorly -- but who were at home conversing with
        > one another in
        > Russian.

        This does make sense to me.


        > Fr. John R. Shaw

        Thank you father for your response. I do not mean to
        come across as rude or confrontational, but this is an
        issue that I have personally been wrestling with.







        __________________________________
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        Win a $20,000 Career Makeover at Yahoo! HotJobs
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      • vkozyreff
        Dear Father John, bless. What I mean is that the communist would never have chosen a language that was not clear to all Russians. Moreover, the Slavonic
        Message 3 of 19 , May 2, 2004
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          Dear Father John, bless.

          What I mean is that the communist would never have chosen a language
          that was not clear to all Russians. Moreover, the Slavonic language
          has a "torzhestviennost" (majestic-ness) that the Russian language
          does not have. The Communists wanted to take advantage of it. This
          topic was discussed here, about the various types of English
          languages (St James's etc.)

          The majestic character of the language is also among the reasons why
          it is so precious to the orthodox and so loved by them. As one
          knows, the communists wanted to replace our faith by theirs (anti-
          Christ, instead of Christ).

          In addition, the Slavonic language is used to create new Russian
          words, like "mlekopitayuscheye" (mammal).

          The Slavic languages are very close to one another, like the
          Scandinavian ones. In my previous work, I used to speak in Russian
          to Bulgarians and Macedonians, while they would reply in their
          language and everything was clear. The Slavonic language is
          particularly close to the Bulgarian-Macedonian languages. The
          Slavonic language is a perfect common language for the Slavic
          orthodox.

          In some liturgical books for Russians, for instance, the Slavonic
          text is accompanied by footnotes, for places that would supposedly
          not be clear for Russians. Actually, most of those notes are
          superfluous.

          In French speaking countries, the French language of many past
          centuries ("vieux fran├žais"), in spite of being significantly
          different from the present French, is nevertheless perfectly
          understandable by prent French speaking people.

          In God,

          Vladimir Kozyreff





          --- In orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com, "Fr. John R. Shaw"
          <vrevjrs@e...> wrote:
          > Vladimir Kozyreff wrote:
          >
          > > For the List, let me mention that the well known USSR slogan so
          many
          > > million times repeated "Da zdrazstvuyet Kommunisticheskaya
          partiya"
          > > (Long live the communist party) is in Slavonic, not Russian.
          >
          > JRS: Are you saying that the language used would make any
          difference in
          > such a case?
          >
          > Although, in Egyptian hieroglyphs, at least not everyone would
          have to
          > know what it said...
          >
          > In Christ
          > Fr. John R. Shaw
        • DDD
          Just some thoughts here, Stephen. As a convert, I used to think like that when I first came to Orthodoxy. I initially came in through a NC Greek parish (the
          Message 4 of 19 , May 2, 2004
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            Just some thoughts here, Stephen. As a convert, I used to think like that when I first came to Orthodoxy. I initially came in through a NC Greek parish (the only church labelled Orthodox in that city). They asked, "You Grik?" I asked, "Why don't you have the services in English?" They asked, "Why don't you Americans build yourself a church like we did?"

            1) In all humility, we Americans need to think about that a lot. There are *two* contexts in America or anywhere:
            1) Churches built by Russians for Russians
            2) Missionary churches built by Russians or by Americans for Americans.

            2) The Russian churches built here *by Russians* were mainly built as Diaspora churches--not missionary churches, to serve the Russians in the Diaspora. Therefore, the Russians have every right to have their services in Slavonic, as they are accustomed, and as they would have them if they were in Russia. We Americans need to respect that.

            3) *In that context,* as Fr. John pointed out, an American will never really (fully) understand the Russian Church Abroad unless he learns Russian, first, because there are so many publications that have not been translated into English, second, so as to communicate with Russians better and not have a "church within a Church" that has no contact with or understanding of its main Church (Russian OCOR), The latter is very, very important.

            4) In that context, Russians are very welcoming to Americans joining their Church.

            5) As far as missionary parishes go, I think the ideal would be to have the priest, at least, be fluent in both Russian and English--the former so he could be thoroughly acquainted with all the literature and goings on and spirit of the Church Abroad, and the latter so he could effectively communicate that to his parishioners, who could then just speak English.

            6) It would be very good, even in missionary English parishes, if there were Russian/Slavonic classes held, so that there would not be the large gap between English-speaking converts and native Russians. If Russians can learn English, why can't we learn Russian?

            7) It would be good for us to take a good look at exactly what St. Patriarch Tikhon (before he was Patriarch and while he was Bishop in America) was dealing with that situation. For example, I know he had blessed a Western-Rite-modified to be completely Orthodox-for America. He was doing bona fide missionary activity in America before the Revolution broke out, and we could learn a lot by finding out how he dealt with the issue.

            Got to go now, but if anyone has more information on #7, I'd be interested.

            --Dimitra

            On 1 May 2004 16:42:15 -0000, orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com wrote:
            From: Stephen Reske <stephen_reske@...>
            Subject: The Mission of the Church Abroad?

            One often sees the mission of the Church Abroad
            defined by these two principles:

            #1 To keep intact the Orthodox faith and tradition of
            the historically autocephalous Russian Orthodox
            Church.
            #2 To carry the Orthodox faith to all countries where
            Russians have emigrated.

            Now, being that 1/3 or more of the Church Abroad is
            comprised of converts to the Orthodox faith, and
            probably another third are children and grandchildren
            of Russian/Slavic immigrants; coupled with the
            fact that according to many in ROCOR the Russian
            Church in Russia is being revived in a patristic
            manner, shouldn't these
            principles be revised somewhat? Not that they should
            be scrapped completely of course, but perhaps a third
            should be added stating something like: "To bring the
            Gospel to the non-Orthodox..." etc. This mission of
            bringing the Orthodox faith to the non-Orthodox, which
            all Orthodox are called to do, is already underway in
            the Church Abroad...but who can say this is happening
            as fully as it could be, or as fully as some of
            ROCOR's neighbors are doing it? I suppose what I'm
            leading up to is a question- is ROCOR (perhaps I mean
            the hierarchy?) as concerned as they should be with
            ministering to the people they find as their
            neighbors?

            Does ROCOR want the non-Orthodox to become members of
            ROCOR? If so, why do the majority of the larger ROCOR
            parishes/cathedrals conduct services almost entirely
            in Church Slavonic(which the Russians don't even fully
            understand!), with the sermon sometimes being
            in Russian? Why does the
            Metropolitan give many of his sermons in Russian? How
            are American priests expected to be trained at a
            seminary, in the tradition of the Church Abroad, where
            classes are conducted primarily in Russian? As
            faithful followers of St. Tikhon and St. Herman, why
            does the missionary fervor of these saints sometimes
            appear to be put on the "back burner" in ROCOR? How
            does ROCOR, which still sees itself as a "church in
            exile" from Russia, expect to respond to the
            missionary call of the Church in a dynamic way? How
            can a Church of the "diaspora" which sees its true
            motherland as Russia(though a huge number of ROCOR's
            faithful have never lived in Russia) ever not be a
            static Church, hearkening back to bygone days- afraid
            to confront a pluralistic modern world? The modern
            world will not be spiritually satisfied with a
            re-created facade of Holy Rus or Byzantium. ROCOR has
            been outside Russia for nearly 100 years. The original
            goal of the first members of the Synod was to return
            to Russia in their lifetimes, as they did not expect
            the Communist regime to last. How then, 80 years
            later, can ROCOR still be using the same terminology
            of "motherland" and "in exile", which reveals a
            certain mindset. There will be no great return to
            Russia for the vast majority of ROCOR's faithful- why
            not accept this and begin to more fully engage with
            the various countries where the "diaspora" finds
            itself?

            I wonder if the restoration of relations between ROCOR
            and the MP will help make ROCOR more concerned with
            the responsibility of preaching the Gospel to their
            non-Orthodox neighbors... I certainly hope so. Maybe
            after communion is established ROCOR will see that
            they have in fact maintained the traditions of the
            pre-revolutionary Russian Church and kept them in tact
            for the Post-Soviet Russian faithful. They may see
            that part of their mission has been accomplished and
            now new steps can be taken to broaden their horizons a
            bit. If
            ROCOR were to take up this mission more fully, I'm
            sure America and Europe would see ROCOR blossom and
            grow like never before. Westerners are hungry for the
            Orthodoxy of the Church Abroad, but the way it is
            currently presented many places in ROCOR
            makes it largely inaccessible to Westerners: Slavonic
            services, seminaries and colloquia which teach in
            Russian, Russian sermons, the "silvered glance" to the
            old days, etc. If ROCOR is solely for Russians and
            those who wish to "become" Russian, this should be
            made more evident. If this is not the case, then ROCOR
            should be opening its arms to the non-Orthodox more
            fully.
            It seems a good number of convert and "cradle" ROCOR
            priests frequent this list, perhaps they could speak
            on this.

            In Christ,
            Stephen
          • Paul O. BARTLETT
            ... I presume, then, that western Orthodox priests should know Latin? After all, the heritage of western Orthodoxy was transmitted in Latin, not Greek or
            Message 5 of 19 , May 2, 2004
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              On Sat, 1 May 2004, Joachim Wertz wrote:

              > [much trimmed] Personally I think that
              > all priests of any liturgical tradition should at least be able to read the
              > respective liturgical language of their Churches and traditions.

              I presume, then, that western Orthodox priests should know Latin?
              After all, the heritage of western Orthodoxy was transmitted in Latin,
              not Greek or Slavonic. There are Orthodox Christians (in ROCOR itself,
              if my information is correct) who celebrate a western Liturgy (which
              some of them may even call Mass, horror of horrors) rather than the
              Liturgies of St. John Chrysostom and St. Basil. The Latin Liturgy of
              St. Gregory the Great and Gregorian and Ambrosian chant have ancient
              Orthodox roots. For all I know, there may be Orthodox monks who
              follow the Rule of St. Benedict, who as nearly as I can tell was a
              great Orthodox saint.

              --
              Paul Bartlett
              bartlett "at" smart "dot" net
              PGP key info in message headers
            • frvboldewskul@aol.com
              In a message dated 5/2/04 7:35:49 PM Pacific Daylight Time, ... This question was posed to Fr. John, but I wish to give my two cents on this one point. As
              Message 6 of 19 , May 2, 2004
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                In a message dated 5/2/04 7:35:49 PM Pacific Daylight Time,
                stephen_reske@... writes:

                > .
                >
                > Father, when I woke up this morning I couldn't help
                > but notice I'm living in the year 2004 and that my
                > neighbors primarily speak English here in America. Are
                > you suggesting American and European converts should
                > learn Church Slavonic in order to fully participate in
                > Divine Services?
                >
                >

                This question was posed to Fr. John, but I wish to give my two cents on this
                one point. As noted by someone else in a post this afternoon, many of our
                parishes were founded by individuals with the intent that the language used be
                Church Slavonic. For example, in my parish in Cleveland, my people would have
                become members of one of the other 29 Orthodox Churches here, if it wasn't for
                this question (more so than calendar). We are a Church Slavonic parish that
                serves parts in English. This means we lose good people, and gain good people.
                But in a parish that I am starting in Sandusky OH, that parish will probably be
                at least 90 percent in English. In my parish in Columbus, we use a mix of
                50/50, although that depends on who is serving. (When Liturgy is not served, the
                Reader services are nearly all in English). So the issue is parish make-up. St.
                Sergius Parish in Cleveland is not made of 33 percent of converts, although I
                am pleased that in the last few years I have baptized three American converts
                who are faithful to the Church. I doubt that this answers the question, but I
                suggest considering this one point: each parish is different with its own
                history, for better or for worse. This history cannot be ignored and each priest
                needs to know his parish. There is no common formula that works in all places.

                Priest Victor Boldewskul


                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • Fr. John R. Shaw
                ... itself, ... JRS: Quite so. But the more you know, the better off you are! So, even for Western Rite priests, a little familiarity with things Slavonic
                Message 7 of 19 , May 3, 2004
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                  Paul Bartlett wrote:

                  > I presume, then, that western Orthodox priests should know Latin?
                  > After all, the heritage of western Orthodoxy was transmitted in Latin,
                  > not Greek or Slavonic. There are Orthodox Christians (in ROCOR
                  itself,
                  > if my information is correct) who celebrate a western Liturgy...

                  JRS: Quite so.

                  But the more you know, the better off you are! So, even for Western
                  Rite priests, a little familiarity with things Slavonic can't hurt...

                  In Christ
                  Fr. John R. Shaw
                • Joachim Wertz
                  I have myself attended a Western Rite Liturgy in a church that is in ROCOR, and there were parts of the Liturgy (Mass) that were read in Latin. I would say
                  Message 8 of 19 , May 3, 2004
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                    I have myself attended a Western Rite Liturgy in a church that is in ROCOR,
                    and there were parts of the Liturgy (Mass) that were read in Latin. I would
                    say that it would not be a bad idea if these Western Rite ROCOR clergy did
                    know how to read Latin. I suspect that some at least, do. It wouldn't hurt.
                    In my previous posting I wrote merely "read" the traditional liturgical
                    language. I should have said "read for comprehension", and not just
                    pronounce the services in said language. I can pronounce the Greek services,
                    but my comprehension of the Greek liturgical language is less than 20%. It
                    is my opinion that it is in a priest's best interest to know the traditional
                    liturgical language (and even the modern language spoken by his Bishop), at
                    least for his safeguarding against misunderstandings. No, I am not proposing
                    that clergy be re-educated or that clergy wishing to join another
                    jurisdiction should be subjected to a linguistic "litmus test". I was only
                    speaking of an ideal and pointing out that there still is much work to be
                    done in translating texts into languages that are not traditionally
                    Orthodox. Then we could go into the issue of *which* translations should be
                    standard!

                    Christ is Risen!

                    Joachim Wertz


                    From: "Paul O. BARTLETT" <bartlett@...>
                    Organization: SmartNet Private Account
                    Reply-To: orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com
                    Date: Sun, 2 May 2004 19:35:24 -0400 (EDT)
                    To: orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com
                    Subject: Re: [orthodox-synod] The Mission of the Church Abroad?


                    On Sat, 1 May 2004, Joachim Wertz wrote:

                    > [much trimmed] Personally I think that
                    > all priests of any liturgical tradition should at least be able to read the
                    > respective liturgical language of their Churches and traditions.

                    I presume, then, that western Orthodox priests should know Latin?
                    After all, the heritage of western Orthodoxy was transmitted in Latin,
                    not Greek or Slavonic. There are Orthodox Christians (in ROCOR itself,
                    if my information is correct) who celebrate a western Liturgy (which
                    some of them may even call Mass, horror of horrors) rather than the
                    Liturgies of St. John Chrysostom and St. Basil. The Latin Liturgy of
                    St. Gregory the Great and Gregorian and Ambrosian chant have ancient
                    Orthodox roots. For all I know, there may be Orthodox monks who
                    follow the Rule of St. Benedict, who as nearly as I can tell was a
                    great Orthodox saint.

                    --
                    Paul Bartlett
                    bartlett "at" smart "dot" net
                    PGP key info in message headers



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                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  • Paul O. BARTLETT
                    ... How many day to day (non-specialist) Russian or other Slavic Orthodox priests know Greek? After all, Slavonic ritual books themselves were translated
                    Message 9 of 19 , May 3, 2004
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                      On Mon, 3 May 2004, Fr. John R. Shaw wrote:

                      > Paul Bartlett wrote:
                      >
                      > > I presume, then, that western Orthodox priests should know Latin?
                      > > After all, the heritage of western Orthodoxy was transmitted in Latin,
                      > > not Greek or Slavonic. There are Orthodox Christians (in ROCOR itself,
                      > > if my information is correct) who celebrate a western Liturgy...
                      >
                      > JRS: Quite so.
                      >
                      > But the more you know, the better off you are! So, even for Western
                      > Rite priests, a little familiarity with things Slavonic can't hurt...

                      How many "day to day" (non-specialist) Russian or other Slavic
                      Orthodox priests know Greek? After all, Slavonic ritual books
                      themselves were translated originally from Greek. (Of course, later
                      services may have been composed in Slavonic, but I am not aware that
                      the Divine Liturgies themselves were.) "So, even for [Eastern] Rite
                      priests, a little familiarity with things [Greek] can't hurt".

                      --
                      Paul Bartlett
                      bartlett "at" smart "dot" net
                      PGP key info in message headers
                    • Fr. John R. Shaw
                      X.B.! ... JRS: It would be hard to determine how *well* they know Greek, but nevertheless, Greek is a required subject in the seminary. When I was a student at
                      Message 10 of 19 , May 4, 2004
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                        X.B.!

                        Paul Bartlett wrote:

                        > How many "day to day" (non-specialist) Russian or other Slavic
                        > Orthodox priests know Greek? After all, Slavonic ritual books
                        > themselves were translated originally from Greek. (Of course, later
                        > services may have been composed in Slavonic, but I am not aware that
                        > the Divine Liturgies themselves were.) "So, even for [Eastern] Rite
                        > priests, a little familiarity with things [Greek] can't hurt".

                        JRS: It would be hard to determine how *well* they know Greek, but
                        nevertheless, Greek is a required subject in the seminary.

                        When I was a student at Jordanville, not only were we required to learn
                        Greek, but once a year, on the feast of the Three Hierarchs, the Divine
                        Liturgy was sung in Greek (but following the Russian Typicon).

                        When there are Greek-speakers in church, I sometimes say certain
                        prayers in Greek for their benefit (e.g. the prayers before communion).
                        Our chanter, who knows both Slavonic and Greek, will also sometimes
                        sing chants in the original Greek.

                        Everything depends on who attends a given service.

                        In Christ
                        Fr. John R. Shaw
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