Even Our Once Great Parishes Are Affected!

By dogcatcher on December 1st, 2017
  [Editor’s Note: We will comment on this letter to the editors at the bottom of the email that was sent to us] “To The Editors: GoTruthReform I am an infrequent visitor to your site. This is the first-time I’m writing to you. I am writing to you because I witnessed an unbelievable performance by a flock of sheep and their self-proclaimed “shepherd” at a recent Parish Council meeting. I didn’t hear Christ (our only Shepherd) mentioned once. One word kept coming into my head: “obsequious”. * I saw a “cult of personality” performing right before my eyes. I couldn’t wait to leave. One council member’s almost trance-like, whispered questions directed to the Priest : .. “what could they do to you?.. “you would be taking a bullet for us” … “how would you feel, if the parish voted against your wishes?”…it was surreal .. and “the shepherd’s” response: “I must stand in front of my flock and protect it”.. “I will not allow my flock to cross the line..” was discomfiting. I was surprised that I didn’t notice any of the other Council members squirming uncomfortably. Was their silence acquiescence? Was it embarrassment? I couldn’t tell from where I was sitting. I imagined that meeting being video recorded and shown to a group of psychiatrists. I kept thinking: “At Jonestown would any of these people refuse to drink the kool-aid?” This is much worse than I imagined.. if this can happen at a parish that was once the paradigm parish of the entire Archdiocese .. there is no escape from the Ephraimite influences creeping into parishes. I have spent my entire life in the Orthodox Church. I have met with Priests, Bishops, Archbishops and Patriarchs. I know the deference that lay people show to the ordained clergy. I have felt and shown that deference myself. What I saw at the recent Council meeting went way beyond deference. What I saw was blind obedience to a Priest being expected, and offered. What I witnessed was, in my opinion, unhealthy…although I am not a psychiatrist or an expert in cults and cult behavior. This has nothing to do with financial problems currently embroiling the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese. I believe that this is much more serious. I have looked at your website from time to time and read the anecdotal evidence of this cult infecting parishes. This is the first time I have witnessed anything like this. Definition of Obsequious * American Heritage Dictionary: “1. Full of servile compliance; fawning. 2. Archaic. Submissive and obedient; dutiful.” * Random House Dictionary:”1. servilely compliant or deferential. 2. Characterized by or showing servile compliance.” * Oxford English Dictionary: “trying too hard to please someone; excessively obedient or respectful.” Editor’s comments: How sad for our Church that we keep receiving these emails from disheartened members of our Greek Orthodox Faith. We published this one because we continue to receive reports that once vibrant Parishes are now being subjected to the “theology” of Elder Ephraim. Early on we observed the effect on adherents whose healthy deference to a priest was turned against them and into a weakness that is exploited by the very priest who should be offering assistance and protection. We noticed a pattern of behavior emerging. We remarked on the coping mechanism used by Parishioners when they stayed at the newly affected Parish. In our Article entitled “Gameplan” (here is the link: http://gotruthreform.org/gameplan ) we described these Parishioners and categorize them as follows: “Now that an Ephraimite Priest controls the parish, who is left: 1. The Old While many of the older Parishioners do understand the changes that have occurred, the majority clearly do not. They have grown accustomed to the “bricks & mortar” and cannot find the will to leave or are often unable to leave. They have spent a lifetime in the parish. They chose to stay even though they are conflicted. 2. The Uninformed The members of this group are those that either never understand the faith or lack the will to read anything that will shed light on the Ephraimite cult. They continue to attend their parish unaware of any change. 3. The “I Just Don’t See It” Parishioners These people include some who are highly intelligent. This group either really likes the new Ephraimite Priest or his family or are wed to the idea that “there is nothing wrong with the Priest”. Remember that the Priest has already taken action to remove or marginalize those Parishioners he anticipates will fight the movement. Their personal feelings for the Priest or his family do not allow them to remain objective. These Parishioners are like the character “Sergeant Schultz” on the Hogan’s Heroes television show. They will not agree with anyone else’s observations about the Ephraimite Priest. They put themselves in a state of mind which allows nothing to penetrate their misguided image of the Priest. No matter what you tell them, they will never change their position. 4. The Egocentric This is an interesting group. These were the people at the parish who were never universally respected. They had some limited responsibility or position before the arrival of the Ephraimite Priest. They may have been Parish Council members or even held offices of different organizations. Some of these people even had some support among the Parishioners. However, they begin defending the actions of the Priest at any cost. They become his most ardent defenders and will damage any relationship in order to keep him in power and thereby preserve and increase their own positions. The Ephraimite Priest also understands the psyche of the Egocentric Supporter. This group is like putty in his hands. Soon he convinces this group to take over leadership roles within the parish. These people work for the parish as the Priest’s minions. They work tirelessly, never publicly or privately questioning the Priest. Instead, they carry out his plans with the zeal of converts. These people should be approached with caution for they are on a blind mission. Their egos (and insecurities) never allow them to self-reflect or question their new “spiritual father”. 5. The “I only go there and light my candle” Parishioners This mindset is true in those Parishioners who go to church but do not actively participate in the administrative duties of a church. It is very sad if you have this approach to church. It is sad because our ancestors made many sacrifices when they immigrated to this country to open churches so that they could continue practicing their faith. Now these Parishioners find it inconvenient to their life or lifestyle to vest emotionally in their parish. They chose not to care what is going on because they believe they do not have the time or energy to help. However, if you donate money to any parish that harbors, promotes or protects an Ephraimite Priest, you are aiding in the destruction of the institution of our faith as it has existed in North America since the latter part of the 1800’s. These Parishioners need to take a stand against the destructive control which has taken over so many churches by Ephraimite Priests. Conclusion It has been reported to us that the Ephraimites and their followers have stewards, members or observers at every single parish in the Metropolis of Chicago. They have developed an information network that has damaged the peace of our Church. We too have a plan. We now have observers in every parish. We will document the actions of those who support this destructive movement in our Church. When the time is right, those that have aided and abetted this destructive movement will be identified. Are you affected or victimized by their gameplan? Where do you fit in? Remember that every dollar you put in the tray, the check you write for the smoker ticket or the ad you buy for the parish fundraisers may help keep an Ephraimite Priest in place. The point is you have a responsibility to determine what is going on at your church and what your role is in the game plan to take over your parish.”