Monday, September 13. 2010
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Perhaps include with the letter your resignation from the Order of St Ignatius as there has been no external audit.
Why support an administration which is completely unaccountable to anyone?
1. We still have felons serving as board of trustee members despite the resolution made a the general assembly in Palm Desert.
2. The Constition has not been reconciled with the patriarchate and now will need to be completely revised as self-rule has been surrendered. ( The Holy Synod was to have no further involvement in the internal administrative affairs of the North American Archdiocese per the irrevocable resolution of 2003). I guess it was not revoked, but surrendered.
3. MP at this point beleives the church is himself and the Balamand Glee Club + felons with fat checkbooks. The rest of us do not matter.
4. Where is the audit?
5. The Board of trustees is not functioning legally according to our articles of incorporation in the state of NY.
6. Regardless of how the people vote MP continues to do as he pleases. If he continues to suggest we have self-rule let him first learn to rule himself, I'm gone!
#1 anonymous on 2010-09-13 21:05
I understand your concerns, I have a question for you and others:
Is it right to punish the programs that The ORder funds for your per agenda?
The Order of St. Ignatius fund various programs which benifits the ORthodox faith, by you withdrawing your membership and askign others to do the same will just hurt these programs!
Check your Ego at the Door!
#1.1 Member of the ORder of st. Ignatius on 2010-09-14 09:33
Without an external audit, how can we be sure that the money is going where they say it is going?
Get an external audit and transparent acounting practices, and then see the money flow in. People are willing to give......they just want to know for sure their money is used for God's work and not for bribing Syrian politicians and bishops.
#1.1.1 Antionymous on 2010-09-14 12:16
Well done for both by Archm Touma (a real spiritual leader of the Middle East and by thye Anonymous Priest. Every word meaningful as we read it three times!
Few will follow the suggestions given you can be certain" Afraid of their own "places in the Sun". The Metr. has charming influences and who wants to be ignored or transferred for the "truth"? You can be certain our AEOM (silent) friends. Ever silent with the many who do not want their places "shaken". Yes, most are spineless but for good reason as my Khouryie reminds me. (Priest's wife.) Or, well whatever makes the Metr. happy! reread the articles, yes, three times. Then pray.
#2 Anonymous Antiochian Priest on 2010-09-13 21:53
Viva la Revolucion!
#3 Che on 2010-09-14 03:54
To all you state a revolt within the archdiocese, may I remind you the Antiochian archdiocese is an Archdiocese under the PAtriarch of Antioch who resides in damacus, if you do not like that or do not respect MEtropolitan PHILIP as your Metropolitan then do not let the hiot you on the way out; I think the archdiocese need to clean house and thrown all of these converts out with the Garbage!
#3.1 Plummer on 2010-09-14 09:38
". . .if you do not like that or do not respect MEtropolitan PHILIP as your Metropolitan then do not let the hiot you on the way out; . . ."
Dear sir, it is as much my church as it is yours....you have no special claim because you were "born into it." Nay, it is neither of our Church. It is not Metropolitan Philip's Church. It is CHRIST"s Church. And need I remind you of his warning (for all of us)? "The Kingdom of God will be taken from you and given to another." Tread carefully my brother in Christ. Do not call unclean what God has decalred clean.
#3.1.1 Antionymous on 2010-09-14 12:23
As the writer of the previous post! I agree with you the Church is for everyone, and I have no problemwith a difference of opinion. However calling for a revolt or revoultion sounds to me like the Protestant Reformation! If you do nto agree or respect the church Hierarchy then go to a different Jurisdiction, do nto force AOCA to change on yor account, you are kidding yourself if you thihink that will occur!
#22.214.171.124 Anonymous on 2010-09-15 10:01
Nobody's asking the AONA to change, unless change means doing things with transperancy and accountability. I love my bishop and pray no one "changes" things by disenthroning him with out a spiritual court!
#126.96.36.199.1 Antionymous on 2010-09-15 19:06
Many people makes the comments that the Bishops were "dethrowned" - I disagree, All of the diocean Bishops are still functioning Bishop, just some differences in their responsibilities
Lets wait and see what is the practually difference between diocean bishops and Auxilaries Practually speaking once the Hierarchs duties is presented at the fall archdiocese Board Meeting!
(Editor's note: "Dethrowned" is priceless, even if unintentional. I think you can make a good case that the Archdiocese as a whole has been "thrown", and "dethrowning" may be just what it needs. LOL.
#188.8.131.52.1.1 Anonymous on 2010-09-16 08:26
Re-read Fr. George Aquaro's article. We are not an Archdiocese.
We are the DIOCESE of North America and Met. Philip is only a diocesan bishop. Met. Philip was deceiving us when he said we have self-rule. We are just another ethnic diocesan jurisdiction which will never have autonomy but will probably die a slow death like all the other ethnic jurisdictions.
The converts should not have to put up with the Arab debacle.
All Antiochian converts please find the nearest OCA parish and join it. The Antiochian Diocese of North America is not set up to take care of you because it is a corrupt ethnic jurisdiction. The OCA isn't perfect but the bishops are all chosen here in North America and you won't have to deal with having governance papers written in a foreign language and then translated into English. The OCA Holy Synod is located in North America and answers to the clergy and laypeople here. The bishops of the OCA are REAL Diocesan bishops with real Dioceses. Each Diocesan bishop as his own budget and cannot avoid audits like Metropolitan Philip does. Met. PHil's way of doing business resembles the Mafia and even the patriarch is unhappy about that but he is powerless to remove him.
#3.1.2 Iskandra on 2010-09-14 20:15
With all respect 23 years ago when the greek, or OCA would not accept the EOc in their Archdiocese Metropolitan PHILIP accepted them as a whole woth open arms; If he is so connected to Arabic thinking why would he accept a few thousand of American Evengalics - because Both Meropolitan PHILIP saw that they were ORthodox int heir Teaching and the potiential to expand the Church and welcome them with open arms!
IF he is so conencted to Arabi thinkign would he have done this?
#184.108.40.206 Anonymous on 2010-09-15 21:21
Because the former evangelicals would add to Metropolitan Philip's wealth.
I grew up in an Arab church and I now attend a church started by former evangelicals. These converts give 10% to the church. The Arab church had twice as many families but a about half the budget of the church I now attend. And most of these Arab families are very wealthy (live in middle eastern palatial estates and drive really expensive cars) but they give very little to the church.
I had admired Metropolitan Philip when I was young and naive but what I saw happen in Palm Desert sickened me. Absolute power corrupts.
So I think these very generous converts need to go to a church that will appreciate them and where their money will be used to evangelize North America, and not be used to line the pockets of middle eastern clergy or politicians.
#220.127.116.11.1 Iskandra on 2010-09-16 21:31
Is the word 'muqam' better translated "Chosen" rather than assigned?
I believe the earlier decision that appeared on the Patriarchal website said:
"Muqam Allah" Chosen of God exactly as is in a Bishop's Phimi read at the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy, i.e., Philip chosen by God, Archbishop of NY and all North America.
Has the Holy Synod simply chosen to believe God has nothing to do wit the process. Or perhaps, MP believes he alone elects and appoints?
What a horrible idea to think we may marinalize God from the election, appointment and over sight of Dioceses.
So is Philip no longer chosen by God as well?
#4 anonymous on 2010-09-14 06:20
To the anonymous clergyman who wrote the reflection, I'm afraid that the only part I completely agree with you on is the part about prayer.
Your citations of the canons was admirable but as Fr. George Aquaro pointed out in his reflection, there do appear to be significant misunderstandings as to what constitutes a diocese.
I may be in the minority, but I oppose the ideas of separate dioceses where bishops "run the show" on their own with no true accountability. I saw firsthand what Archbishop Peter did to the OCA's diocese of New York. By his complete inattention, he drove it into the ground. How about Bishop Nikolai of Alaska? Is that your model for good episcopal oversight as well? How about Bishop Demetri Khouri of the Antiochian Archdiocese? Without Metropolitan Phillip's "meddling" he would probably still be there today. Shall I continue? These are just a few. What about Metropolitan Herman and his handling (or lack thereof) of the financial affairs at St. Tikhon's monastery?
Somehow we need to find a happy medium between a benevolent dictator and dioceses that can be run with literally no accountability to anyone but God.
(Editor's note: Having some experience in the instances you note, it does need to be pointed out that in each case you mentioned ( with the exception of Archbishop Peter, who died) the bishops in question were all dealt with by their Synod. That's the point of a real Synod, with authority, and the courage to use that authority. In every one of the cases you mentioned it was not the Bishop's authority which was the problem, but the failure of the Synod to act decisively when those problems first manifested themselves. Eventually, however, to their credit, they did. Better late than never, I guess.)
#5 Anon. on 2010-09-14 09:45
OUr editor's fine reply not withstanding, what are we to do when the primate of the "Archdiocese" "runs the show" with no "accountability" because his brother bishops on his synod have been reduced to underlings?
(Editor's note: That was my point, which I will repeat. Without a Synod, there is no accountability at all for any Bishop. That is not good for such a bishop, most of all, as Lord Acton's observation concerning the papacy in 1870 is as valid today as then: power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. ( BTW: Lord Acton was a devout Catholic - not some revolutionary.) So I appreciate and understand your concern.)
#5.1 Antionymous on 2010-09-14 12:26
Agreeing with Mark, we need to understand that we Orthodox are doing a pretty horrible (and just about non-existent) job of being who we say we are as the Church. And that starts with our bishops. Too often, they have proved they would rather be little Popes in their own diocese/archdioce, rather than brothers in a true synod. All one needs as proof is the scene of Abp Job bowing to ask forgiveness of the reprehensible bp of Alaska, while the other bishops sat there and let that happen. Or watch the machinations of Englewood. The problem is not real diocesan bishops. It's us!
God help us and protect us from ourselves!
(Editor's note: Or, as Pogo so brilliantly observed forty years ago paraphrasing Cmdr. Perry: "We have met the enemy and they are us." So, what should we all be doing, each in our own way according to our charism, to make it better? Just being "sad" about it is understandable, but insufficient. God did not tell us to be just "sad" about our sins, but turn from them, and live.)
#5.2 Anonymously sad about it all on 2010-09-15 06:37
Fr. Touma for Metropolitan of the Antiochian "Eparchy" of North America!
#6 Antionymous on 2010-09-14 12:27
To "Plummer," who should stop using various monikers to suggest multiple people share his views, when his propensity to capitalize the first two letters of words gives him away: I wonder how you will respond when Christ asks you why you suggested the Faithful be thrown out with the garbage. I suspect you will finally be at a loss for words. Wish I could be there to see it, but God willing, I won't be anywhere near the vicinity.
With respect to the letter writing campaign suggested by the anonymous priest, isn't it a bit absurd to suggest that people stand up an be counted, when the man leading the charge isn't willing to give his own name? Why should the laity take all the risks? Is it reasonable to expect the sheep to chase the wolf away?
#7 Gail Sheppard on 2010-09-14 16:30
For the record, I only made one post on this page the one signed by "Plummer"I did not other names.
With regards to my point, when individuals calll for a revolt or revoultion with the Church, I take exception tot hat. As soemone raised in the Antiochian Archdiocese I am respectful to all Bishops and Metropolitan! Reading how many call Metropolitan PHILIP corrup and vile I take personally. That was why I stated if you do nto liek the AOCA then leave with the garbage, ti was crude illistration .
I support U.S Constitution and the Bill of Rights, I think evewryone on this sight to to show some restraint on how they post comments abotu the Hierachy who represent the Church by callign a Metropolitan Corrupt you are call the entire Church corrupt since they represent the Church.
LEts remember all the good Metropolitan PHILIP ahve done for the Archdiocese in the past 44 years as MEtropolitan, he have devotted his entire life to the Church and have open the Church to anyone who wish to partake in the ORthodox Faith, please show him the respect he have earned!
#7.1 Plummer on 2010-09-15 21:31
And may he respect us by honoring our desire for integrity by allowing an external audit and by allowing our beloved bishops to BE bishops.....
#7.1.1 Antionymous on 2010-09-16 07:03
You are asking us to show considerable restraint where Metropolitan Philip has shown none. He has no respect for our bishops, our priests, the laity, our laws, the canons or even the Holy Synod, whom he manipulates. "Come, let us reason together," means nothing to him. In the beginning he promoted unity, but now he is fostering a dictatorship and look at the result! He has torn our Archdiocese asunder. He lit the match that started this war between us (cradle vs convert). A couple of years ago, we would have embraced in fellowship, but now we are at each others throats; not because of who you are or who I am, but because we are forced to choose sides. - Yes, Metropolitan Philip has done many good things, but he has marred his reputation through his desperate need to control. Had he retired, his legacy would have remained in tact, but sadly, he will be remembered as a foolish, arrogant man who exercised considerably poor judgment in his final days. - I pray for Metropolitan Philip daily, as we all should. ....
#7.1.2 Gail Sheppard on 2010-09-16 11:07
Here we go again. It is clear that after all the wrangling of the previous year, MP who HATES to lose has triumphed once again. Those naive converts who expected justice to prevail should accept the situation and find some place where there is peace (and it won't be in this archdiocese where fraud and corruption rule). The Troy types have triumphed, and there is absolutely nothing that the rank and file can do. Ethnicity reigns. Accept it, find a place, either buried in a safe parish where the priest is true and not subservient or groveling toward MP, or find an OCA parish. Believe me, the Arab contingent will be happy to see converts leave--witness the frequent statements of Bishop Antuun who is quite publicly vocal in his distain for converts. This is reality. MP never wanted anything from converts except their money.
#8 weary on 2010-09-16 13:47
Some of us Arab-Americans will probably leave too. I don't want my money used
so a few corrupt Troy clergy and some of our bishops can live a lavish lifestyle while they control the patriarchate with the money we give them.
Enough of that nonsense! Let us move and join the OCA. We can work toward a united Orthodox Church here in North America.
Let the dead bury the dead! Their corrupt ways will lead to the demise of the Antiochian DIOCESE of North America.
#8.1 Iskandra on 2010-09-20 01:50
Let's face it: If you agree with Met. Philip, he is a benevolent father. If you disagree with him you see him as a controlling mega-tyrant who allows no one access to information or any control over their local church or region beyond what he gives and can take away. Many of you have suggested it: As long as he retains total unaccountable control over the funds of the Antiohcians in North America, then no one can effectively question anything. He controls the funds of the Order, and he decides how it is spent. Some of it is spent wisely, but the remainder? No one knows. He decides which clergy receive retirement benefits, and how much. He is the sole arbitor of who receives what, and it has nothing to do with the service of the clergy or their worthiness (or lack thereof).
I have just one thing to say, truly, and I don't see it reflected anywhere else ... Met. Philip is mortal and the day is coming soon when he will pass beyond our praise or criticism; he will be beyond controlling any bishops or any finances. The REAL question the Antiochians have to worry about is ... who will be the NEXT metropolitan. If shenanigans are being pulled now ... just wait for what is to come.
#9 Sean O'Clare on 2010-09-16 15:35
Hey Antiochian clergy and people-
Can anyone say "power grab?" I sympathize and am in solidarity with those of you who find the actions of your primate and Holy Synod reprehensible. ( For those of you don't, well I hardly know what to say, other than, WAKE UP!) Remember St. John Chrysostom! Speak the truth to "authority." If God had wanted us all to submit to his "authority" He would not have come to us in the person of Jesus Christ. Stand up! Your brother clergy and the people of God are are with you.
In Christ, DJ
#10 Dn. Jeremiah Crawford on 2010-09-17 17:30
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