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RE:Epistle of ROAC Synod to ROCA Sobor

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  • Michael Nikitin
    Reader Constantine writes in harmony with Metr. Vitaly. Why is it that you and other priests on this list do not defend Metr. Vitaly when others say that he is
    Message 1 of 18 , Oct 3, 2000
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      Reader Constantine writes in harmony with Metr. Vitaly. Why is it that you
      and other priests on this list do not defend Metr. Vitaly when others say
      that he is erroneous , but come to the defense of someone who disagrees with
      Metr.Vitaly? Metr. Vitaly status is higher than anyone in ROCOR.


      Daniel Lieuwen wrote:

      Reader Constantine:

      Please quit pretending to speak for the ROCOR. Go join your chosen group of
      the "last fourteen true Russian Orthodox Christians"
      if you want to, but quit pretending that your tirades against clergymen
      who have been in ROCOR far longer than yourself represent anything other
      than a small group of schismatic-wannabees. If you cannot be respectful to
      those whose status in the church is higher than yourselves, then if you
      "cannot learn to speak, learn to keep silence" (to paraphrase St. Jerome's
      _Against Helvidius_).

      Fr. John Shaw does not speak for all of us. I am disgusted that these
      words come from one who will, nevertheless, grace the Sergianist
      Anti-religious Organization with the designation "church" and its head,
      Agent Drozdov, with the title "Patriarch."


      I am disgusted by your attack on Fr. John.

      As Fr. Seraphim Rose of blessed memory tells us, "It is later than we
      think."


      I believe Fr. Seraphim would be deeply distressed to see you using him to
      justify the poison that you spew on these lists. He was firm, but he did
      not spit venom against those he disagreed with. Rather, he encouraged
      people
      to choose a better path and disagreed with great civility. His arguments
      with clergymen like Fr. Alexander Schmemann in other jurisdictions show
      a restraint that you do not apply to _anyone_ with whom you disagree,
      whatever
      their ecclesiastical rank and whatever jurisdiction. His treatment of
      Buddhism is kinder than your treatment of your Orthodox opponants in your
      same jurisdiction. This is the mark of a sectarian, not of an Orthodox
      traditionalist.

      I apologize for not remonstrating with you privately as was my Christian
      duty previously. Having failed in that duty and seen to what levels you
      have sunk in public, I am forced to take the dispute to the next level.

      Reader Daniel Lieuwen
      (also in ROCOR and disgusted by the reputation you give it)


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    • Rev. John R. Shaw
      ... This thread seems to be widely cross-posted. As I said on a parallel list--Metropolitan Vitaly, contrary to the claims of M. Nikitin, in fact *presided*
      Message 2 of 18 , Oct 4, 2000
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        On Tue, 3 Oct 2000, Michael Nikitin wrote:

        > Reader Constantine writes in harmony with Metr. Vitaly. Why is it that you
        > and other priests on this list do not defend Metr. Vitaly when others say
        > that he is erroneous , but come to the defense of someone who disagrees with
        > Metr.Vitaly? Metr. Vitaly status is higher than anyone in ROCOR.
        >
        This "thread" seems to be widely cross-posted.

        As I said on a parallel list--Metropolitan Vitaly, contrary to the
        claims of M. Nikitin, in fact *presided* over the Synod as it decided to
        depose Valentine--therefore it is I whose remarks are "in harmony" with
        his position.
        In Christ
        Fr. John R. Shaw
      • Michael Nikitin
        How about the issue of the M.P.? Fr.John Shaw wrote: As I said on a parallel list--Metropolitan Vitaly, contrary to the claims of M. Nikitin, in fact
        Message 3 of 18 , Oct 4, 2000
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          How about the issue of the M.P.?


          Fr.John Shaw wrote:

          As I said on a parallel list--Metropolitan Vitaly, contrary to the
          claims of M. Nikitin, in fact *presided* over the Synod as it decided to
          depose Valentine--therefore it is I whose remarks are "in harmony" with
          his position.
          In Christ
          Fr. John R. Shaw




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        • Joseph Digrande
          The real issue in this post is not Reader Constantine but rather does ROAC have legitimate concerns about the road that ROCA has taken in the last 5 years.
          Message 4 of 18 , Oct 4, 2000
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            The real issue in this post is not Reader Constantine
            but rather does ROAC have legitimate concerns about
            the road that ROCA has taken in the last 5 years.
            There have been attacks on Vladimir Moss and Father
            Stephen of Denver on the Indiana list but the Synod
            through the priests who have responded have not been
            able yet to present a valid rebuttal to essays of Moss
            (e.g. Do the Heretics Have Grace?) I think this list
            is an excellent place to debate the ecclesial
            positions of Met. Cyprian of Fili in that the Synod
            has swallowed them hook, line and sinker. Neither the
            Synod nor Met. Cyprian is infallible. The beauty of
            Orthodoxy is that one can question policies and
            ecclesial positions without being silenced, threatened
            or excommunicated. Reader Constantine has every right
            to question these policies and remain in the Synod. He
            has a right to question them publically and privately.
            In a sense it is more than a right, it is a
            responsibility that no one should shirk. Ecumenism and
            Sergism need to be seen like Arians were and discussed
            in the marketplace (as St. Gregory Nyssa said the
            Byzantine Romans used to do). The marketplace is the
            Internet and Reader Constantine has the responsibility
            to throw his two cents in and not be hammered for it.
            Ad hominen attacks have been made by priests on this
            list too and they have been given a lot of room to
            make those attacks.
            Joseph Digrande
            --- Michael Nikitin <mikeniki@...> wrote:
            > Reader Constantine writes in harmony with Metr.
            > Vitaly. Why is it that you
            > and other priests on this list do not defend Metr.
            > Vitaly when others say
            > that he is erroneous , but come to the defense of
            > someone who disagrees with
            > Metr.Vitaly? Metr. Vitaly status is higher than
            > anyone in ROCOR.
            >
            >
            > Daniel Lieuwen wrote:
            >
            > Reader Constantine:
            >
            > Please quit pretending to speak for the ROCOR. Go
            > join your chosen group of
            > the "last fourteen true Russian Orthodox Christians"
            > if you want to, but quit pretending that your
            > tirades against clergymen
            > who have been in ROCOR far longer than yourself
            > represent anything other
            > than a small group of schismatic-wannabees. If you
            > cannot be respectful to
            > those whose status in the church is higher than
            > yourselves, then if you
            > "cannot learn to speak, learn to keep silence" (to
            > paraphrase St. Jerome's
            > _Against Helvidius_).
            >
            > Fr. John Shaw does not speak for all of us. I am
            > disgusted that these
            > words come from one who will, nevertheless, grace
            > the Sergianist
            > Anti-religious Organization with the designation
            > "church" and its head,
            > Agent Drozdov, with the title "Patriarch."
            >
            >
            > I am disgusted by your attack on Fr. John.
            >
            > As Fr. Seraphim Rose of blessed memory tells us,
            > "It is later than we
            > think."
            >
            >
            > I believe Fr. Seraphim would be deeply distressed to
            > see you using him to
            > justify the poison that you spew on these lists. He
            > was firm, but he did
            > not spit venom against those he disagreed with.
            > Rather, he encouraged
            > people
            > to choose a better path and disagreed with great
            > civility. His arguments
            > with clergymen like Fr. Alexander Schmemann in other
            > jurisdictions show
            > a restraint that you do not apply to _anyone_ with
            > whom you disagree,
            > whatever
            > their ecclesiastical rank and whatever jurisdiction.
            > His treatment of
            > Buddhism is kinder than your treatment of your
            > Orthodox opponants in your
            > same jurisdiction. This is the mark of a sectarian,
            > not of an Orthodox
            > traditionalist.
            >
            > I apologize for not remonstrating with you privately
            > as was my Christian
            > duty previously. Having failed in that duty and
            > seen to what levels you
            > have sunk in public, I am forced to take the dispute
            > to the next level.
            >
            > Reader Daniel Lieuwen
            > (also in ROCOR and disgusted by the reputation you
            > give it)
            >
            >
            >
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            >


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          • rjmanz
            Dear List, I quite agree with Joseph. It seems that whenever one comes from a conservative view and brings up issues on this List, there is typically an
            Message 5 of 18 , Oct 4, 2000
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              Dear List,

              I quite agree with Joseph. It seems that whenever one comes from a
              "conservative" view and brings up issues on this List, there is typically an
              immediate backlash with personal criticisms against that person, making this
              a very unsafe place to dialogue at times.
              I also agree that in most cases, not all, the points presented are not
              discussed or rebutted with facts, but instead are replied with personal
              attacks, or labels of being a schismatic, sectarian, or fanatic.
              I am very troubled about recent things, including the epistle from the
              ROAC, as well as our clergy commemorating the Jerusalem Pat., and the Serbs
              who are very ecumenical despite the slant presented on this list.
              It would be welcomed for the clergy on this List to help us out with some
              of these issues and what these things mean in light of the 1983 Anathema.
              Can this be discussed without stirring up a hornets nest?

              Nectarios Manzanero
              St John Maximovitch Mission, Austin
              --
              Sincerely, An iPhone User
            • byakimov@csc.com.au
              Dear Nectarious I have asked some of our Bishops to bring the 1983 Anathema and other issues at the coming SOBOR of Bishops and for the SOBOR to make a clear
              Message 6 of 18 , Oct 4, 2000
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                Dear Nectarious

                I have asked some of our Bishops to bring the 1983 Anathema and other
                issues at the coming SOBOR of Bishops and for the SOBOR to make
                a clear statement in regard to these issues - so that we can all ROCA can
                interpret
                the statement only in one way and not be confused as we seem to be
                at times.

                Unworthy Deacon Basil from Canberra



                "rjmanz" <smartcats@...> on 10/05/2000 02:06:54 PM

                Please respond to orthodox-synod@egroups.com

                To: orthodox-synod@egroups.com
                cc: (bcc: Basil Yakimov/AUST/CSC)
                Subject: Re: [orthodox-synod] RE:Epistle of ROAC Synod to ROCA Sobor



                Dear List,

                I quite agree with Joseph. It seems that whenever one comes from a
                "conservative" view and brings up issues on this List, there is typically
                an
                immediate backlash with personal criticisms against that person, making
                this
                a very unsafe place to dialogue at times.
                I also agree that in most cases, not all, the points presented are not
                discussed or rebutted with facts, but instead are replied with personal
                attacks, or labels of being a schismatic, sectarian, or fanatic.
                I am very troubled about recent things, including the epistle from the
                ROAC, as well as our clergy commemorating the Jerusalem Pat., and the Serbs
                who are very ecumenical despite the slant presented on this list.
                It would be welcomed for the clergy on this List to help us out with
                some
                of these issues and what these things mean in light of the 1983 Anathema.
                Can this be discussed without stirring up a hornets nest?

                Nectarios Manzanero
                St John Maximovitch Mission, Austin
                --
                Sincerely, An iPhone User

                Archives located at http://www.egroups.com/group/orthodox-synod
              • Rev. John R. Shaw
                ... And as I said on the other list--I do not recall the MP ever having entered the discussion. The issue was ROAC .
                Message 7 of 18 , Oct 5, 2000
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                  On Wed, 4 Oct 2000, Michael Nikitin wrote:

                  > How about the issue of the M.P.?
                  >
                  And as I said on the other list--I do not recall the MP ever
                  having entered the discussion. The issue was "ROAC".
                  >
                  > Fr.John Shaw wrote:
                  >
                  > As I said on a parallel list--Metropolitan Vitaly, contrary to the
                  > claims of M. Nikitin, in fact *presided* over the Synod as it decided to
                  > depose Valentine--therefore it is I whose remarks are "in harmony" with
                  > his position.
                  > In Christ
                  > Fr. John R. Shaw
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  > _________________________________________________________________________
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                  >
                  > Share information about yourself, create your own public profile at
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                  >
                  >
                  >
                  > Archives located at http://www.egroups.com/group/orthodox-synod
                  >
                  >
                  >
                • Rev. John R. Shaw
                  ... They would like, for obvious reasons, to portray ROCOR as having deviated from its former positions , and to portray themselves as true bearers of the
                  Message 8 of 18 , Oct 5, 2000
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                    On Wed, 4 Oct 2000, Joseph Digrande wrote:

                    > The real issue in this post is not Reader Constantine
                    > but rather does ROAC have legitimate concerns about
                    > the road that ROCA has taken in the last 5 years.

                    They would like, for obvious reasons, to portray ROCOR as having
                    "deviated from its former positions", and to portray themselves as true
                    bearers of the tradition of the Russian Church.

                    > There have been attacks
                    on Vladimir
                    Moss and Father > Stephen of Denver on the Indiana list but the Synod
                    > through the priests who have responded have not been
                    > able yet to present a valid rebuttal to essays of Moss
                    > (e.g. Do the Heretics Have Grace?) I think this list
                    > is an excellent place to debate the ecclesial
                    > positions of Met. Cyprian of Fili in that the Synod
                    > has swallowed them hook, line and sinker.

                    In fact, Met. Cyprian of Fili is not the object of much attention
                    in ROCOR circles, aside from a few clergy that are friends with his
                    followers. His views are not talked about--except by a few that disagree
                    with them. Consequently it seems strange to me that we should hear all
                    this talk about "Cyprian of Fili having converted ROCOR to his teachings".
                    99% of our laity have never even heard of him or his Synod.

                    However, it is a clear enough fact that the Church Abroad has
                    traditionally *not* denied that the other Orthodox Churches have grace.
                    This has been amply documented by Fr. Alexander Lebedeff.

                    The beauty of > Orthodoxy is that one can question policies and
                    > ecclesial positions without being silenced, threatened
                    > or excommunicated. Reader Constantine has every right
                    > to question these policies and remain in the Synod. He
                    > has a right to question them publically and privately.
                    > In a sense it is more than a right, it is a
                    > responsibility that no one should shirk.

                    It is interesting that we should hear so much about C's "right and
                    obligation to speak out", yet he makes a habit of treating the ROCOR
                    clergy who disagree with him in a disrespectful and rude manner. I do not
                    recall seeing anyone--clergy or laity--reply to Rd. Constantine in the
                    kind of tone that he himself seems to favor.

                    Be that as it may, the rest of us also have a right to speak out
                    about these matters that concern us; and if we see that misinformation
                    (let alone *dis*information!) is being propounded, day after day, on the
                    internet, and that outsiders are starting to believe and repeat it,--then
                    we too have a duty to speak up for our Church.

                    Ecumenism and
                    > Sergism need to be seen like Arians were and discussed
                    > in the marketplace (as St. Gregory Nyssa said the
                    > Byzantine Romans used to do). The marketplace is the
                    > Internet and Reader Constantine has the responsibility
                    > to throw his two cents in and not be hammered for it.
                    > Ad hominen attacks have been made by priests on this
                    > list too and they have been given a lot of room to
                    > make those attacks.

                    "Ad hominem" means that instead of saying that Joseph DiGrande is
                    the victim of disinformation, I say that "Joseph Digrande is
                    such-and-such, therefore he is discredited adn disqualified; therefore his
                    words should be ignored and his testimony rejected".
                    Whom do you know that talks in this manner?

                    But what I agree with in Mr. DiGrande's posting is that we should
                    discuss the issues frankly--and courteously.
                    Unfortunately there are several issues (such as church schisms)
                    that have become inseparable from their central personalities; just as
                    there are some personalities (e.g. Rd. Constantine) that are hard to view
                    apart from their "positions".

                    In Christ
                    Fr. John R. Shaw
                  • Rd. Constantine Wright
                    Glory to Jesus Christ! Glory Forever! ... That document, and the thoughts contained in it, *are* blasphemy, and I will always continue to proclaim that. But I
                    Message 9 of 18 , Oct 5, 2000
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                      Glory to Jesus Christ! Glory Forever!

                      >Poster: Ascension Monastery <mga@...>
                      >Subject: Rdr Constantine's views of HOCNA and ROCOR
                      >
                      >He accused our Archbishop Mark of blasphemy. ... He accuses the >ROCOR of
                      >moving recklessly toward Moscow.

                      That document, and the thoughts contained in it, *are* blasphemy, and I will
                      always continue to proclaim that. But I am not the only one who sees this.
                      Here are the words of Vladyka Kyrill of Seattle:

                      "It was with great sadness that I read the "statement" of the participants
                      in the ninth meeting between clergy of the ROCOR and
                      the MP on the territory of Germany. This statement, I am deeply convinced,
                      is an irresponsible collection of demagogic phrases, containing not even one
                      healthy thought that could lead to the resolution of the myriad
                      ecclesiastical problems of the Russian Orthodox Church at the end of the
                      20th century.

                      Recently, more than ever before, the question of the unification of the MP
                      and the ROCOR is being trumpeted. Very sadly, these statements most often
                      issue from the mouths of people for whom yearning for ecclesiastical truth
                      is foreign, and who sow discord into the minds of their spiritual children.
                      ....

                      And if "unification" with the MP, which Archbishop Mark is trying to
                      accomplish, has become so timely, then why are there so many pastors within
                      Russia who are struggling to find a way out of the spiritual dead-end that
                      the post-Soviet church administration is ardently trying to lead them into?
                      (We know well that the price of searching for the truth is very high -
                      sometimes it even costs lives - for example, take the threats that were
                      received by the recently murdered Archpriest Alexander Zharkoff in St.
                      Petersburg just before his transfer under the omophorion of the Russian
                      Church Abroad)."


                      >From: "Michael Nikitin" <mikeniki@...>
                      >Subject: [orthodox-synod] Re:Epistle of ROAC Synod to ROCA Sobor
                      >
                      >How about the issue of the M.P.?

                      The position of our ROCOR, as expressed by our First Hierarchs, is clear:

                      From the founding First Hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad,
                      Metropolitan Antony of Kiev (quoted by Vladyka Philaret):

                      "A quotation from a Paschal encyclical of Vladyka Anthony's (1934): 'The
                      present age is rich not in ascetical feats of piety and
                      confession of faith, but in cheating, lies, and deceits. It is noteworthy
                      that several hierarchs and their flocks, for the most part
                      Russians, have already fallen away from Ecumenical unity, and to the
                      question: 'What dost thou believe?', reply with references to
                      self-proclaimed heads of all sorts of schisms in Moscow, America, and
                      Western Europe. It is clear that they have ceased to believe in the unity of
                      the Church throughout the whole world and do not wish to admit it,
                      attempting to bear calmly the refusal of the true Church to have relations
                      with them, and imagining that one can supposedly save ones soul even without
                      communion with Her. . . Those who have cut themselves off from Her deprive
                      themselves of the hope of salvation, as the Fathers of the Sixth Ecumenical
                      Council teach concerning this, having recognized the renegades as being
                      totally devoid of grace,
                      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ according
                      to the word of Christ: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto
                      thee as an heathen man and a publican."

                      From the sainted Metropolitan Philaret:

                      The so-called Moscow Patriarchate is "*outside of the true Church*.

                      What then is the "Soviet church"? Archimandrite Constantine has often and
                      insistently stated that the most horrible thing that the God-hating regime
                      has done in Russia is the creation of the "Soviet church," which the
                      Bolsheviks presented to the people as the true Church, having driven the
                      genuine Orthodox Church into the catacombs or into the concentration camps.

                      This pseudo-church has been twice anathematized. His Holiness Patriarch
                      Tikhon and the All-Russian Church Sobor anathematized the Communists and
                      *all their collaborators.* This dread anathema has not been lifted till this
                      day and remains in force, since it can be lifted only by a similar
                      All-Russian Church Sobor, as the canonical supreme ecclesiastical authority.
                      And a terrifying thing happened in 1927, when the head of the Church,
                      Metropolitan Sergius, by his infamous and apostate Declaration, subjected
                      the Russian Church to the Bolsheviks and proclaimed collaboration with them.
                      And thus in a most exact sense was fulfilled the expression in the prayer at
                      the beginning of Confession: "having fallen under their own anathema"! For
                      in 1918 the Church anathematized all the confederates of Communism, while in
                      1927 she herself joined the camp of these collaborators and began to laud
                      the red, God-hating regime - to laud the red beast spoken of in the
                      Apocalypse.

                      As if that is not enough. When Metropolitan Sergius promulgated his criminal
                      Declaration, then the faithful children of the Church immediately separated
                      themselves from the Soviet church, and thus the Catacomb Church was formed.
                      And she, in her turn, has anathematized the official church for its betrayal
                      of Christ."

                      And from our current First Hierarch Metropolitan Vitaly:

                      "The last four patriarchs of the Moscow Patriarchate have been chosen by the
                      communist state * , which has suddenly declared itself to be a democracy.
                      This senior administration of the Moscow Patriarchate is simply a government
                      institution, devoid of Divine grace, and those who comprise it are no more
                      than government officials in cassocks. There are "clever" people who will
                      tell you that this entire letter is just the Metropolitan's own personal
                      opinion. But here I will reply that I have been compelled to write this
                      letter by endless protests from throughout our great Russian diaspora."

                      And from His Eminence's most recent pre-conciliar epistle:

                      "We must ourselves understand, and also declare for all to hear, that since
                      1927, when Metropolitan Sergius signed his lamentable "declaration," and up
                      to the present day, our Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia has not had
                      and does not have any communion in prayer with the Moscow Patriachate, which
                      is nothing other than the uncanonical creation of the former Soviet regime."

                      I think this amply shows the true position of ROCOR on the Sergianist
                      organization. I could close with words of my own... but I think it far
                      better to end with the admonition of our First Hierarch:

                      "And so I, as First Hierarch, am calling upon all of you to remain forever
                      faithful to our Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia and not to be
                      confused by those appeals which we are all hearing more and more
                      often that we should unite and concelebrate with others in the name of a
                      loudly proclaimed "brotherly love." Where is our "brotherly love" when we
                      are living, in that which is most important to us - our Divine Services -
                      according to different calendars, and living a different spiritual life? Let
                      us ponder the meaning of that most important phrase "Divine Service," which
                      is to say, "serving God" and then we will understand that in fact we are
                      serving God Himself in different ways."

                      With Christ's love,
                      Rd. Constantine

                      #############################################################
                      # Reader Constantine Wright PO Box 774, Athens, GA 30603 #
                      # constantinew@... constans@... #
                      # Personal Page- http://members.tripod.com/~constans_wright #
                      #-----------------------------------------------------------#
                      # Joy of All Who Sorrow Eastern Orthodox Church (ROCOR) #
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                    • Joseph Digrande
                      This seems crystal clear to me. So what happenned in our Church between the Decolaration of 1927 when the Met. of Moscow became uncanonical and Alexi I who was
                      Message 10 of 18 , Oct 5, 2000
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                        This seems crystal clear to me. So what happenned in
                        our Church between the Decolaration of 1927 when the
                        Met. of Moscow became uncanonical and Alexi I who was
                        termed a rightful Patriarch according to Father
                        Alexander (I assume that all these quotes I read are
                        accurate). It seems that Archbishop Mark held talks
                        with the MP under the assumption that he was dealing
                        with a canonical institution with a legitimate
                        hierarchy. If ROCA thinks that their hierarchy and
                        orders are valid (of the Synod and its Patriarch),
                        then ROCA disagrees with the position of Met. Joseph
                        and Peter at the time of the emergence of the catacomb
                        church. That is what is so confusing about our Church.
                        I hope the Sobor will address this as well as the 1983
                        anathema.
                        Joseph Digrande
                        --- "Rd. Constantine Wright"
                        <constantinew@...> wrote:
                        > Glory to Jesus Christ! Glory Forever!
                        >
                        > >Poster: Ascension Monastery
                        > <mga@...>
                        > >Subject: Rdr Constantine's views of HOCNA and
                        > ROCOR
                        > >
                        > >He accused our Archbishop Mark of blasphemy. ...
                        > He accuses the >ROCOR of
                        > >moving recklessly toward Moscow.
                        >
                        > That document, and the thoughts contained in it,
                        > *are* blasphemy, and I will
                        > always continue to proclaim that. But I am not the
                        > only one who sees this.
                        > Here are the words of Vladyka Kyrill of Seattle:
                        >
                        > "It was with great sadness that I read the
                        > "statement" of the participants
                        > in the ninth meeting between clergy of the ROCOR and
                        > the MP on the territory of Germany. This statement,
                        > I am deeply convinced,
                        > is an irresponsible collection of demagogic phrases,
                        > containing not even one
                        > healthy thought that could lead to the resolution of
                        > the myriad
                        > ecclesiastical problems of the Russian Orthodox
                        > Church at the end of the
                        > 20th century.
                        >
                        > Recently, more than ever before, the question of the
                        > unification of the MP
                        > and the ROCOR is being trumpeted. Very sadly, these
                        > statements most often
                        > issue from the mouths of people for whom yearning
                        > for ecclesiastical truth
                        > is foreign, and who sow discord into the minds of
                        > their spiritual children.
                        > ....
                        >
                        > And if "unification" with the MP, which Archbishop
                        > Mark is trying to
                        > accomplish, has become so timely, then why are there
                        > so many pastors within
                        > Russia who are struggling to find a way out of the
                        > spiritual dead-end that
                        > the post-Soviet church administration is ardently
                        > trying to lead them into?
                        > (We know well that the price of searching for the
                        > truth is very high -
                        > sometimes it even costs lives - for example, take
                        > the threats that were
                        > received by the recently murdered Archpriest
                        > Alexander Zharkoff in St.
                        > Petersburg just before his transfer under the
                        > omophorion of the Russian
                        > Church Abroad)."
                        >
                        >
                        > >From: "Michael Nikitin" <mikeniki@...>
                        > >Subject: [orthodox-synod] Re:Epistle of ROAC Synod
                        > to ROCA Sobor
                        > >
                        > >How about the issue of the M.P.?
                        >
                        > The position of our ROCOR, as expressed by our First
                        > Hierarchs, is clear:
                        >
                        > From the founding First Hierarch of the Russian
                        > Orthodox Church Abroad,
                        > Metropolitan Antony of Kiev (quoted by Vladyka
                        > Philaret):
                        >
                        > "A quotation from a Paschal encyclical of Vladyka
                        > Anthony's (1934): 'The
                        > present age is rich not in ascetical feats of piety
                        > and
                        > confession of faith, but in cheating, lies, and
                        > deceits. It is noteworthy
                        > that several hierarchs and their flocks, for the
                        > most part
                        > Russians, have already fallen away from Ecumenical
                        > unity, and to the
                        > question: 'What dost thou believe?', reply with
                        > references to
                        > self-proclaimed heads of all sorts of schisms in
                        > Moscow, America, and
                        > Western Europe. It is clear that they have ceased to
                        > believe in the unity of
                        > the Church throughout the whole world and do not
                        > wish to admit it,
                        > attempting to bear calmly the refusal of the true
                        > Church to have relations
                        > with them, and imagining that one can supposedly
                        > save ones soul even without
                        > communion with Her. . . Those who have cut
                        > themselves off from Her deprive
                        > themselves of the hope of salvation, as the Fathers
                        > of the Sixth Ecumenical
                        > Council teach concerning this, having recognized the
                        > renegades as being
                        > totally devoid of grace,
                        >
                        ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                        > according
                        > to the word of Christ: but if he neglect to hear the
                        > church, let him be unto
                        > thee as an heathen man and a publican."
                        >
                        > From the sainted Metropolitan Philaret:
                        >
                        > The so-called Moscow Patriarchate is "*outside of
                        > the true Church*.
                        >
                        > What then is the "Soviet church"? Archimandrite
                        > Constantine has often and
                        > insistently stated that the most horrible thing that
                        > the God-hating regime
                        > has done in Russia is the creation of the "Soviet
                        > church," which the
                        > Bolsheviks presented to the people as the true
                        > Church, having driven the
                        > genuine Orthodox Church into the catacombs or into
                        > the concentration camps.
                        >
                        > This pseudo-church has been twice anathematized. His
                        > Holiness Patriarch
                        > Tikhon and the All-Russian Church Sobor
                        > anathematized the Communists and
                        > *all their collaborators.* This dread anathema has
                        > not been lifted till this
                        > day and remains in force, since it can be lifted
                        > only by a similar
                        > All-Russian Church Sobor, as the canonical supreme
                        > ecclesiastical authority.
                        > And a terrifying thing happened in 1927, when the
                        > head of the Church,
                        > Metropolitan Sergius, by his infamous and apostate
                        > Declaration, subjected
                        > the Russian Church to the Bolsheviks and proclaimed
                        > collaboration with them.
                        > And thus in a most exact sense was fulfilled the
                        > expression in the prayer at
                        > the beginning of Confession: "having fallen under
                        > their own anathema"! For
                        > in 1918 the Church anathematized all the
                        > confederates of Communism, while in
                        > 1927 she herself joined the camp of these
                        > collaborators and began to laud
                        > the red, God-hating regime - to laud the red beast
                        > spoken of in the
                        > Apocalypse.
                        >
                        > As if that is not enough. When Metropolitan Sergius
                        > promulgated his criminal
                        > Declaration, then the faithful children of the
                        > Church immediately separated
                        > themselves from the Soviet church, and thus the
                        > Catacomb Church was formed.
                        > And she, in her turn, has anathematized the official
                        > church for its betrayal
                        > of Christ."
                        >
                        > And from our current First Hierarch Metropolitan
                        > Vitaly:
                        >
                        > "The last four patriarchs of the Moscow Patriarchate
                        > have been chosen by the
                        > communist state * , which has suddenly declared
                        > itself to be a democracy.
                        > This senior administration of the Moscow
                        > Patriarchate is simply a government
                        > institution, devoid of Divine grace, and those who
                        > comprise it are no more
                        > than government officials in cassocks. There are
                        > "clever" people who will
                        > tell you that this entire letter is just the
                        > Metropolitan's own personal
                        > opinion. But here I will reply that I have been
                        > compelled to write this
                        > letter by endless protests from throughout our great
                        > Russian diaspora."
                        >
                        > And from His Eminence's most recent pre-conciliar
                        > epistle:
                        >
                        > "We must ourselves understand, and also declare for
                        > all to hear, that since
                        > 1927, when Metropolitan Sergius signed his
                        > lamentable "declaration," and up
                        > to the present day, our Russian Orthodox Church
                        > Outside Russia has not had
                        > and does not have any communion in prayer with the
                        > Moscow Patriachate, which
                        > is nothing other than the uncanonical creation of
                        > the former Soviet regime."
                        >
                        > I think this amply shows the true position of ROCOR
                        > on the Sergianist
                        > organization. I could close with words of my own...
                        > but I think it far
                        > better to end with the admonition of our First
                        > Hierarch:
                        >
                        === message truncated ===


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                      • Joseph Digrande
                        This seems crystal clear to me. So what happenned in our Church between the Decolaration of 1927 when the Met. of Moscow became uncanonical and Alexi I who was
                        Message 11 of 18 , Oct 5, 2000
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                          This seems crystal clear to me. So what happenned in
                          our Church between the Decolaration of 1927 when the
                          Met. of Moscow became uncanonical and Alexi I who was
                          termed a rightful Patriarch according to Father
                          Alexander (I assume that all these quotes I read are
                          accurate). It seems that Archbishop Mark held talks
                          with the MP under the assumption that he was dealing
                          with a canonical institution with a legitimate
                          hierarchy. If ROCA thinks that their hierarchy and
                          orders are valid (of the Synod and its Patriarch),
                          then ROCA disagrees with the position of Met. Joseph
                          and Peter at the time of the emergence of the catacomb
                          church. That is what is so confusing about our Church.
                          I hope the Sobor will address this as well as the 1983
                          anathema.
                          Joseph Digrande
                          --- "Rd. Constantine Wright"
                          <constantinew@...> wrote:
                          > Glory to Jesus Christ! Glory Forever!
                          >
                          > >Poster: Ascension Monastery
                          > <mga@...>
                          > >Subject: Rdr Constantine's views of HOCNA and
                          > ROCOR
                          > >
                          > >He accused our Archbishop Mark of blasphemy. ...
                          > He accuses the >ROCOR of
                          > >moving recklessly toward Moscow.
                          >
                          > That document, and the thoughts contained in it,
                          > *are* blasphemy, and I will
                          > always continue to proclaim that. But I am not the
                          > only one who sees this.
                          > Here are the words of Vladyka Kyrill of Seattle:
                          >
                          > "It was with great sadness that I read the
                          > "statement" of the participants
                          > in the ninth meeting between clergy of the ROCOR and
                          > the MP on the territory of Germany. This statement,
                          > I am deeply convinced,
                          > is an irresponsible collection of demagogic phrases,
                          > containing not even one
                          > healthy thought that could lead to the resolution of
                          > the myriad
                          > ecclesiastical problems of the Russian Orthodox
                          > Church at the end of the
                          > 20th century.
                          >
                          > Recently, more than ever before, the question of the
                          > unification of the MP
                          > and the ROCOR is being trumpeted. Very sadly, these
                          > statements most often
                          > issue from the mouths of people for whom yearning
                          > for ecclesiastical truth
                          > is foreign, and who sow discord into the minds of
                          > their spiritual children.
                          > ....
                          >
                          > And if "unification" with the MP, which Archbishop
                          > Mark is trying to
                          > accomplish, has become so timely, then why are there
                          > so many pastors within
                          > Russia who are struggling to find a way out of the
                          > spiritual dead-end that
                          > the post-Soviet church administration is ardently
                          > trying to lead them into?
                          > (We know well that the price of searching for the
                          > truth is very high -
                          > sometimes it even costs lives - for example, take
                          > the threats that were
                          > received by the recently murdered Archpriest
                          > Alexander Zharkoff in St.
                          > Petersburg just before his transfer under the
                          > omophorion of the Russian
                          > Church Abroad)."
                          >
                          >
                          > >From: "Michael Nikitin" <mikeniki@...>
                          > >Subject: [orthodox-synod] Re:Epistle of ROAC Synod
                          > to ROCA Sobor
                          > >
                          > >How about the issue of the M.P.?
                          >
                          > The position of our ROCOR, as expressed by our First
                          > Hierarchs, is clear:
                          >
                          > From the founding First Hierarch of the Russian
                          > Orthodox Church Abroad,
                          > Metropolitan Antony of Kiev (quoted by Vladyka
                          > Philaret):
                          >
                          > "A quotation from a Paschal encyclical of Vladyka
                          > Anthony's (1934): 'The
                          > present age is rich not in ascetical feats of piety
                          > and
                          > confession of faith, but in cheating, lies, and
                          > deceits. It is noteworthy
                          > that several hierarchs and their flocks, for the
                          > most part
                          > Russians, have already fallen away from Ecumenical
                          > unity, and to the
                          > question: 'What dost thou believe?', reply with
                          > references to
                          > self-proclaimed heads of all sorts of schisms in
                          > Moscow, America, and
                          > Western Europe. It is clear that they have ceased to
                          > believe in the unity of
                          > the Church throughout the whole world and do not
                          > wish to admit it,
                          > attempting to bear calmly the refusal of the true
                          > Church to have relations
                          > with them, and imagining that one can supposedly
                          > save ones soul even without
                          > communion with Her. . . Those who have cut
                          > themselves off from Her deprive
                          > themselves of the hope of salvation, as the Fathers
                          > of the Sixth Ecumenical
                          > Council teach concerning this, having recognized the
                          > renegades as being
                          > totally devoid of grace,
                          >
                          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                          > according
                          > to the word of Christ: but if he neglect to hear the
                          > church, let him be unto
                          > thee as an heathen man and a publican."
                          >
                          > From the sainted Metropolitan Philaret:
                          >
                          > The so-called Moscow Patriarchate is "*outside of
                          > the true Church*.
                          >
                          > What then is the "Soviet church"? Archimandrite
                          > Constantine has often and
                          > insistently stated that the most horrible thing that
                          > the God-hating regime
                          > has done in Russia is the creation of the "Soviet
                          > church," which the
                          > Bolsheviks presented to the people as the true
                          > Church, having driven the
                          > genuine Orthodox Church into the catacombs or into
                          > the concentration camps.
                          >
                          > This pseudo-church has been twice anathematized. His
                          > Holiness Patriarch
                          > Tikhon and the All-Russian Church Sobor
                          > anathematized the Communists and
                          > *all their collaborators.* This dread anathema has
                          > not been lifted till this
                          > day and remains in force, since it can be lifted
                          > only by a similar
                          > All-Russian Church Sobor, as the canonical supreme
                          > ecclesiastical authority.
                          > And a terrifying thing happened in 1927, when the
                          > head of the Church,
                          > Metropolitan Sergius, by his infamous and apostate
                          > Declaration, subjected
                          > the Russian Church to the Bolsheviks and proclaimed
                          > collaboration with them.
                          > And thus in a most exact sense was fulfilled the
                          > expression in the prayer at
                          > the beginning of Confession: "having fallen under
                          > their own anathema"! For
                          > in 1918 the Church anathematized all the
                          > confederates of Communism, while in
                          > 1927 she herself joined the camp of these
                          > collaborators and began to laud
                          > the red, God-hating regime - to laud the red beast
                          > spoken of in the
                          > Apocalypse.
                          >
                          > As if that is not enough. When Metropolitan Sergius
                          > promulgated his criminal
                          > Declaration, then the faithful children of the
                          > Church immediately separated
                          > themselves from the Soviet church, and thus the
                          > Catacomb Church was formed.
                          > And she, in her turn, has anathematized the official
                          > church for its betrayal
                          > of Christ."
                          >
                          > And from our current First Hierarch Metropolitan
                          > Vitaly:
                          >
                          > "The last four patriarchs of the Moscow Patriarchate
                          > have been chosen by the
                          > communist state * , which has suddenly declared
                          > itself to be a democracy.
                          > This senior administration of the Moscow
                          > Patriarchate is simply a government
                          > institution, devoid of Divine grace, and those who
                          > comprise it are no more
                          > than government officials in cassocks. There are
                          > "clever" people who will
                          > tell you that this entire letter is just the
                          > Metropolitan's own personal
                          > opinion. But here I will reply that I have been
                          > compelled to write this
                          > letter by endless protests from throughout our great
                          > Russian diaspora."
                          >
                          > And from His Eminence's most recent pre-conciliar
                          > epistle:
                          >
                          > "We must ourselves understand, and also declare for
                          > all to hear, that since
                          > 1927, when Metropolitan Sergius signed his
                          > lamentable "declaration," and up
                          > to the present day, our Russian Orthodox Church
                          > Outside Russia has not had
                          > and does not have any communion in prayer with the
                          > Moscow Patriachate, which
                          > is nothing other than the uncanonical creation of
                          > the former Soviet regime."
                          >
                          > I think this amply shows the true position of ROCOR
                          > on the Sergianist
                          > organization. I could close with words of my own...
                          > but I think it far
                          > better to end with the admonition of our First
                          > Hierarch:
                          >
                          === message truncated ===


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                        • Joseph Digrande
                          Everyone has a right and responsibility to speak out wherever they see fit. There have been times when ROCA hierarchs has considered the MP devoid of grace.
                          Message 12 of 18 , Oct 5, 2000
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                            Everyone has a right and responsibility to speak out
                            wherever they see fit. There have been times when ROCA
                            hierarchs has considered the MP "devoid of grace."
                            This belief exists amongst many of the clergy. Reader
                            Constantine has posted several quotes to this effect.
                            I don't see the logic of denying one thing to Met.
                            Sergius and then giving it right back to a Met.
                            Nikodim, Alexi II or even Alexi I. By doing so, it
                            breaks theological unity with the Catacomb Church,
                            whose basic thesis was that the Soviet Church has no
                            grace. This is the position that ROAC has taken over.
                            Their view of the ecumenical activity of both the
                            Serbs and Mp is also consistent with the view of the
                            Catacomb Church of 30/40 years ago.
                            Father Alexander has not answered Vladimir Moss's
                            lengthy essay in my mind (and I am not alone). It will
                            take more than just posting to this site. It requires
                            as long and as detailed and scholarly an essay,
                            something our ROCA theological journals have not taken
                            on.
                            As far as insulting language- I have heard the
                            conservatives on this list termed "fanatics- followers
                            of Panteleimon (without the slightest evidence) and
                            Father Stephen's decision considered "�diocy", when in
                            fact he moved from the Synod for reasons of
                            conscience. If every controversial subject here is met
                            by the rebuttal of �diocy or fanatics"- how will this
                            help us understand the real facts here?
                            Again the Synod is not consistent in my mind on
                            ecumenism and grace of heretics. My spiritual father
                            was certain that the MP had no grace. To prevent
                            confusion, I would pray that our Synod would speak out
                            on this issue in a clear voice.
                            Recognizing Met. Cyprian as the only Synod in Greece
                            means that the Synod accepts their theology hook, line
                            and sinker. It also negates the Anathema of 1983.
                            There are Bishops and priests in our Synod who
                            encourage laity to attend, confess and commune in OCA
                            and Antiochian parishes when there is no Synod
                            parishes close by. My spiritual father forbid me from
                            entering or taking a blessing from any New Calendar
                            priest as well as the Serbs and MP. My spiritual
                            father was in the Synod well into his 90's. This
                            division is in the Synod and needs to be healed.
                            Polite dialogue on this subject is needed.
                            Joseph Digrande
                            --- "Rev. John R. Shaw" <vrevjrs@...> wrote:
                            > On Wed, 4 Oct 2000, Joseph Digrande wrote:
                            >
                            > > The real issue in this post is not Reader
                            > Constantine
                            > > but rather does ROAC have legitimate concerns
                            > about
                            > > the road that ROCA has taken in the last 5 years.
                            >
                            > They would like, for obvious reasons, to portray
                            > ROCOR as having
                            > "deviated from its former positions", and to portray
                            > themselves as true
                            > bearers of the tradition of the Russian Church.
                            >
                            > > There have been attacks
                            > on Vladimir
                            > Moss and Father > Stephen of Denver on the Indiana
                            > list but the Synod
                            > > through the priests who have responded have not
                            > been
                            > > able yet to present a valid rebuttal to essays of
                            > Moss
                            > > (e.g. Do the Heretics Have Grace?) I think this
                            > list
                            > > is an excellent place to debate the ecclesial
                            > > positions of Met. Cyprian of Fili in that the
                            > Synod
                            > > has swallowed them hook, line and sinker.
                            >
                            > In fact, Met. Cyprian of Fili is not the object of
                            > much attention
                            > in ROCOR circles, aside from a few clergy that are
                            > friends with his
                            > followers. His views are not talked about--except by
                            > a few that disagree
                            > with them. Consequently it seems strange to me that
                            > we should hear all
                            > this talk about "Cyprian of Fili having converted
                            > ROCOR to his teachings".
                            > 99% of our laity have never even heard of him or his
                            > Synod.
                            >
                            > However, it is a clear enough fact that the Church
                            > Abroad has
                            > traditionally *not* denied that the other Orthodox
                            > Churches have grace.
                            > This has been amply documented by Fr. Alexander
                            > Lebedeff.
                            >
                            > The beauty of > Orthodoxy is that one can question
                            > policies and
                            > > ecclesial positions without being silenced,
                            > threatened
                            > > or excommunicated. Reader Constantine has every
                            > right
                            > > to question these policies and remain in the
                            > Synod. He
                            > > has a right to question them publically and
                            > privately.
                            > > In a sense it is more than a right, it is a
                            > > responsibility that no one should shirk.
                            >
                            > It is interesting that we should hear so much about
                            > C's "right and
                            > obligation to speak out", yet he makes a habit of
                            > treating the ROCOR
                            > clergy who disagree with him in a disrespectful and
                            > rude manner. I do not
                            > recall seeing anyone--clergy or laity--reply to Rd.
                            > Constantine in the
                            > kind of tone that he himself seems to favor.
                            >
                            > Be that as it may, the rest of us also have a right
                            > to speak out
                            > about these matters that concern us; and if we see
                            > that misinformation
                            > (let alone *dis*information!) is being propounded,
                            > day after day, on the
                            > internet, and that outsiders are starting to believe
                            > and repeat it,--then
                            > we too have a duty to speak up for our Church.
                            >
                            > Ecumenism and
                            > > Sergism need to be seen like Arians were and
                            > discussed
                            > > in the marketplace (as St. Gregory Nyssa said the
                            > > Byzantine Romans used to do). The marketplace is
                            > the
                            > > Internet and Reader Constantine has the
                            > responsibility
                            > > to throw his two cents in and not be hammered for
                            > it.
                            > > Ad hominen attacks have been made by priests on
                            > this
                            > > list too and they have been given a lot of room to
                            > > make those attacks.
                            >
                            > "Ad hominem" means that instead of saying that
                            > Joseph DiGrande is
                            > the victim of disinformation, I say that "Joseph
                            > Digrande is
                            > such-and-such, therefore he is discredited adn
                            > disqualified; therefore his
                            > words should be ignored and his testimony rejected".
                            > Whom do you know that talks in this manner?
                            >
                            > But what I agree with in Mr. DiGrande's posting is
                            > that we should
                            > discuss the issues frankly--and courteously.
                            > Unfortunately there are several issues (such as
                            > church schisms)
                            > that have become inseparable from their central
                            > personalities; just as
                            > there are some personalities (e.g. Rd. Constantine)
                            > that are hard to view
                            > apart from their "positions".
                            >
                            > In Christ
                            > Fr. John R. Shaw
                            >
                            >


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                          • elias
                            Joseph: There are also those ROCOR members, I have heard, that are allowed to commune in an OCA parish which is practicing the Julian Calendar. There are a few
                            Message 13 of 18 , Oct 6, 2000
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                              Joseph:

                              There are also those ROCOR members, I have heard, that are allowed to
                              commune in an OCA parish which is practicing the Julian Calendar. There are
                              a few of those around the U.S. That would entail that those Old Calendar OCA
                              priests also periodically partake of the Eucharist from New Calendar priests
                              at conventions, parish visits, etc. Is this a gray area? Or do these
                              situations even exist?

                              elias

                              There are Bishops and priests in our Synod who
                              encourage laity to attend, confess and commune in OCA
                              and Antiochian parishes when there is no Synod
                              parishes close by. My spiritual father forbid me from
                              entering or taking a blessing from any New Calendar
                              priest as well as the Serbs and MP. My spiritual
                              father was in the Synod well into his 90's. This
                              division is in the Synod and needs to be healed.
                              Polite dialogue on this subject is needed.
                              Joseph Digrande
                            • Joseph Digrande
                              elias: these situations do exist. I live in Alaska and the priest who visits our village celebrates the services in the Old Calendar. He then flies back to
                              Message 14 of 18 , Oct 7, 2000
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                                elias: these situations do exist. I live in Alaska and
                                the priest who visits our village celebrates the
                                services in the Old Calendar. He then flies back to
                                Juneau, Sitka or Anchorage and does New Calendar
                                services. When he comes to our village, I don't attend
                                or even receive his blessing. I have explained to him
                                why this is. He is conservative (for the OCA) and is
                                opposed to ecumenism in theory. He says he agrees with
                                "95% of what I believe. "We discuss books and he is
                                welcome in my house- there is no hatred or bad
                                feelings between us but like everything else nowadays-
                                the theological situation requires contortions that
                                would make Houdini proud.
                                Wouldn't it be so simple for the Synod of the MP to
                                just confess publically (their relations with the
                                KGB), disavow ecumenism, become simple monks and I am
                                sure all of us would forgive them gladly. Who could
                                judge them in that situation. But they don't and so we
                                have to continue contorting ourselves. But it is all
                                about money and power unfortunately at the top of the
                                MP.
                                --- elias <h2o@...> wrote:
                                > Joseph:
                                >
                                > There are also those ROCOR members, I have heard,
                                > that are allowed to
                                > commune in an OCA parish which is practicing the
                                > Julian Calendar. There are
                                > a few of those around the U.S. That would entail
                                > that those Old Calendar OCA
                                > priests also periodically partake of the Eucharist
                                > from New Calendar priests
                                > at conventions, parish visits, etc. Is this a gray
                                > area? Or do these
                                > situations even exist?
                                >
                                > elias
                                >
                                > There are Bishops and priests in our Synod who
                                > encourage laity to attend, confess and commune in
                                > OCA
                                > and Antiochian parishes when there is no Synod
                                > parishes close by. My spiritual father forbid me
                                > from
                                > entering or taking a blessing from any New Calendar
                                > priest as well as the Serbs and MP. My spiritual
                                > father was in the Synod well into his 90's. This
                                > division is in the Synod and needs to be healed.
                                > Polite dialogue on this subject is needed.
                                > Joseph Digrande
                                >
                                >


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