undermining our metropolitan & hierarchs
- In a previous post from Fr John Shaw there was a remark to the
effect that certain misinformation serves to undermine the efforts
of our metropolitan & hierarchs towards reconciliation. This point
about 'undermining' helps clarify for myself at least the point Fr
David Moser was making about 'loyal opposition'.
As members of our church (and especially as priests and those in
positions of responsability within the church) we have a
responsability concerning obedience. Of course this does not mean
mindless agreement with everything told us. But I think we should
agree on the proper nature of disagreement and how this is expressed.
Disagreement within the Church must always be grounded in obedience,
humility and above all faith or else it will verge towards self-
will. In other words behind disagreement should be the
understanding that at the end of the day, all is in God's hands.
Many times the members of the Church have been purified by difficult
trials: on the other hand extreme efforts towards
achieving 'correct' ends at times expresses human desires for
a 'perfect' and indeed 'safe' world in which one is not tempted and
there is little suffering over the issues. Of course one does not
want to go too far in either direction here- we do not want an
attitude of 'anything goes'; but equally we do not want attitude
of 'I'm in control'.
So much the more does all of this apply in regards to our rightful
hierarchs whom we owe obedience and honour. I must say that at times
I have seen in our church a most egregious example of disobedience
and self-will. My spirtual father used to call this, "taking the
reins into our own hands."
Our metropolitan & hierarchs have set before us the course they wish
for us to go- reconciliation. Of course they do not mean
reconcilitaion at all costs. Of course we may have our own
reservations and of course we may express this. But certain things
presently being said by those against reconciliation imply that i)
our hierarchs are leading us astray in the most fundamental way-
almost or tantamount to heresy; & ii)that those in schism are the
ones who have chosen the correct path. This I believe to be 'un-
First of all we have a responsability to provide an example of
humble leadership to our people (I am talking mainly of priests; but
this applies to the laity who are also called to be an example to
others also). Statements that give the impression that following or
not following our bishops is not so important compared to what we
think correct are deeply pernicious for they encourage self-will;
the same self-will that usually ends up biting the very person who
taught such things in the first place. We cannot expect humility of
our people unless we express this ourself in our own attitudes.
Some of those who are most adamantly in oppositon to our hierarchs
are trying to 'skate on both sides of the pond.' They claim a great
loyalty to the principles of our church and then stand in
fundamental opposition to her hierarchs. Even when our hierarchs try
to explain that these are not really the principles of our church
this is still not accepted. Having known quite well those who have
already left our church I now I think recognise the pattern at work.
Trying to take 'the reins of control' into their own hands their
hearts & minds are already slipping into schism from the rest of the
Church. All of these groups we tragically see now around us are the
fulfillment of this already occuring 'inner schism'.
About these things I feel we must all be extremely careful.
In Christ- Fr Raphael Vereshack
- I'm glad Fr.John agrees with the rest of the post.
"Fr. John R. Shaw" <vrevjrs@...> wrote:
> The ROCOR was founded in 1920, in accordance with a directive ofPatriarch
> Tikhon.JRS: In his polemical exchange of articles with Fr. Joseph Pishtey, in
the aftermath of the 1970 Autocephaly of the OCA, Fr. George Grabbe
denied that 1920 was technically the correct date for the formation of
The correct year was 1921, which is why ROCOR celebrated its 50th
anniversary in the fall of 1971 -- following the Montreal Sobor of that
Fr. John R. Shaw
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