READER’S RESPONSES TO OUR RECENT ARTICLE “Is the Greek Orthodox Church a Church of God’s Laws or is it a Church of Men?”

By dogcatcher on November 6th, 2016

We have selected two emails that were in response to our last article. This first email came to us from a son of a Greek Orthodox Priest. He has degrees in both Theology and Law. His thoughts are well defined and he makes a keen observation which we have taken the liberty of setting off in bold type. The second email came to us from a Greek Orthodox Priest who has a clear and defined view of the issue of the Ephraimite problem in North America. We hope you enjoy these two emails as much as we did. They serve to reinforce the mission of this website. Both emails clearly state a positon concerning the current conditions of the Church. Here are the emails:

FIRST EMAIL:

“My dear friend, it is enlightening to read one express, as you do in this article, the present-day state of our church and need for some reawakening. Our Church through the ages has been many times in an upward and downward spiral, periods of development and periods decay. Surely if the Church were not an institution of God and it were an institution of man, it would not have lasted through the ages as it did. Sadly, though it seems today that we are in a period of decay and this because we are not coherent to the truth, the logos of God and his laws. We have gone astray a bit, following religious notions that are comfortable and suitable without giving much thought to what God is truly asking of us, He is a loving God asks very little in return. The true servants and defenders of God’s “epigaea ekklesia-earthly Church” I believe are those who seek the truth without any biased condition and or fear thereof of retaliation for just action. The true servants of God are those that follow his Word, His Church and Commandments and not some newly formed extremist movement and or condition that in all ends can only separate God’s children (He truly dislikes this and is saddened and angry when this occurs because it goes against the very essence of God which is love, respect). If movements and people who follow in them do not love and respect their fellow Christians and other human beings, then they cannot love God and cannot as such express the truth. The truth mends, protects and cleanses. The Church must express the truth even if some come against her. We as “pistoi-believers of the the truth” must also be truth bearers as surely the truth will always bring a promising end for the Church. By the word Church I do not only refer to the men in black, the word Church I believe refers to the whole of people who are in communion with Almighty God. The Church must always express the truth and never fear criticism for doing so will help to avoid a state of decay and help us reach a higher state of development. One of my Theology professors said years ago that the Soviet Union fell because it was not able deal with criticism… everything he said was built around a lie and the truth was hidden from citizens at all cost…, though the truth cannot remain hidden forever… when the truth finally came to light the Soviet system crumbled like a castle made of sand.”

SECOND EMAIL:

“I pray this message finds you and your family well and clothed in the grace and peace of God despite the struggles of our endless fight against this present darkness. Your most recent email prompted me again to recall the words of Jesus as He said; “The eye is the light of the body but if your eye be full of darkness how great is that darkness.”

That our world is filled with darkness is manifest enough many would glibly state this this has always been the case. We seem forever consigned to relive the trials of the past, unable and unwilling to reform, to excise hatred, racism, bigotry, and ignorance from our body politic and from society as a whole.

Jesus (and I prefer to call Him by His given name if for no other reason than that Orthodox Christians today seem to have willfully forgotten it!) also told Nicodemus “and this is the condemnation, that Light has come into the world but mankind preferred the darkness because his deeds were evil.” I think of these passages of Holy Scripture quite frequently as I survey on the one hand the last involuntary muscle spasms of the dead American Empire and the dumpster fire that is the tragedy of Orthodoxy, or more accurately Pseudodoxy in America on the other.

What possible hope can there be for a dying world when the Light-bearers have themselves become enslaved by the darkness? To whom will the souls of perishing men turn when the Gospel of Jesus Christ is neither proclaimed or demonstrated? If the few remaining parishes strewn across the continent themselves become Ichabod how can the flame of Faith be rekindled?

Most of us feel that we are fighting a vain rear-guard action against the forces arrayed against as much (if not more so) from within our own ranks as without. And our beleaguered faithful have, like concentration camp survivors, been so malnourished for so long, locked in a perpetual state of institutionalized apathy, that they lack the context or the vocabulary to grasp even the simplest Gospel message preached to them, not that that is an everyday concern since it so rarely occurs.

Sigh… there’s more to say too dangerous to write. Perhaps we can talk soon but I have a gnawing sense that the end is upon us and there will be no lifeboats offered the drowning. I am weary of ingesting the pablum as one generation races the next out the door of our parishes.”