Monday, October 26. 2009
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It's pretty clear that the forces pushing the Romanians to unite under the Romanian Patriarch are strong. However, the fact remains, according to Orthodox Canon Law, "Local churches are under the rule of local bishops." There is nothing in canon law giving foreign bishops control over "local" established churches in other countries. The current Romanians under the OCA, correct according to canon law, rule themselves and run their own churches. This is how Christ & His Apostles organized the Church. There is no need to be under foreign bishops - WHY?
So, if the patriarchal Romanians wish to obey Orthodox Canon Law, they too would embrace the Romanian diocese under the OCA!
#1 Anonymous on 2009-10-26 09:32
One has to wonder: why all the spite? Hate, insults, words such as "pathetic" -- is this written by a truly rational man, or is this something else? Mr Nemoianou's piece is, in at least this ROEA parishioner's opinion, the worst that we Romanians in America have to offer. Is this Christian behavior? I believe not.
The title of the article indicates a consideration of what the author calls "Circular Logic" in regard to this Romanian unity issue. However, he quickly abandons any discussion of that expressed subject after just the 2nd paragraph and goes on to preach about his personal views on negotiation, church order, racism, Romanian-American history, American patriotism, friends and enemies, Orthodox "tenets", Cold War politics, and, of course, his judgment that the JCD clergy are neither ethical nor intellectual enoough to serve in this capacity. (It should be noted that congresses and councils, as well as Archbishop Nathaniel, have offered numerous statments of support and thanks to the JDC members for all their efforts over the past years. Honest and sincere debate of topics can be healthy, but this tactic of demonizing and attacking clergy unfairly is what is truly "pathetic".)
Aside from the tone, looking at specific accusations, the author outright lies about fact. For example, he accuses the JDC committee of being "secretive" (an old-country communist trick). But, how can any rational person, indeed even a historian and scholar, be oblivious to the fact that, at the past two ROEA congresses, the JDC explained the proposal at great length, point by point, and opened the floor for HOURS of questions and debate. Even when directly insulted, they still responded in a respectful way. (The JDC's demeanor can best be described as sober , even in the face of those who are not.) I understand that the episcopate council receives updates and has lengthy discussion at every meeting. They even traveled to a parish for a town hall type meeting for interested parishioners when invited to do so by the parish council. But alas, such open discussion is still considered "secretive" by those who refuse to accept any of the answers.
After getting questions answered by the JDC clergy, I have actually heard with my own ears people say "I don't care what you say, I will never accept those people." And so there it is. Therein lies our shame as Romanian-Americans. I personally am born in America and accept all people to join our church, and yet a few of my fellow Orthodox Christians have nothing but hate for people even of our own blood. How could I not be at least a little ashamed for my church?
#2 Anonymous on 2009-10-26 11:08
In my opinion, those that support a unification of Romanians under the Patriarchate might as well spit upon the graves of Archbishop VALERIAN the thousands of others who were harassed by the Communists and the Patriarchate's jurisdiction even after settling in the New World.
For years Archbishop NATHANIEL has supported OCA autocephaly and a united American Church. Why the sudden change of heart? Is this kind of phyletism embedded that deep within the Old World and the bishops of "ethnic" jurisdictons and/or dioceses?
#3 Anonymous on 2009-10-26 14:03
Why Nathaniel's change of heart?
Assets, and CYA. With the unresolved and denials of Clergy Sexual Abuse, it is handy to have the transferal of assets to somewhere the courts will have less means to garish the payments due those who have been harmed by neglect and willfil intent of abuse in the OCA.
Where did the sexual abusing priest Nicholas Katinas of Texas run to ..GREECE.
There is an immediate need to stash the cash out of reach or at least allude to its being out of the country.
I made attempts for our small Romanian parish to get a mission planting grant to find out the Romanians of Nathaniel don't support the OCA Mission Planting Grant. For years the Romanians of the OCA have not bothered to send a representative to the Metropolitan Council meetings.
In any case there is a lack of significant openness on all sides to non ethic Romanian relationships.
A man who says that a faithful should not warn about bad things in progress in his Episcopate until those bad things are over,is not worth answering inteligentlly.He is sayng that no good son should warn his mother of a cliff until she has fallen over.
#5 Alexandru Nemoianu on 2009-10-27 05:56
The Romanian Episcopate has very limited involvement with the OCA administration because of the nature of their agreement when the Romanians associated themselves with the OCA. The agreement is clear that the association is strictly spiritual and canonical in nature, and not administrative. The Romanian Episcopate does offer an annual voluntary contribution to the OCA. Otherwise, it and its parishes are not obligated to contribute funds, nor do they receive any funds. (Parishes and individuals are free to make free-will offerings in response to various appeals, but it is their decision.) The Romanian Episcopate has all of its own departments -- missions, religious education, etc -- and supports them completely with its own funds, receiving no assistance from the OCA.
As for representation, the only representation provided for in the agreement is that the bishops of the Romanian Episcopate sit on the OCA synod, and the Romanian Episcopate parishes are invited to send delegates to the sobor only for the purpose of voting to elect the Metropolitan. No administrative decisions made by either of these two bodies (synod and sobor) are binding to the Romanian Episcopate.
Hopefully this offered some clarification to Christmas Monastery.
#6 Anonymous on 2009-10-27 09:24
The above comment uses such emotional imagery of "spit(ting) upon the graves of Archbishop Valerian", et al, but what gives us the right to continue to spit on our fellow man, on our fellow Orthodox Christians?
Archbishop Valerian and others fought against communism not because they wanted something to fight forever, but because they wanted to overcome it, defeat it, and build an even better and stronger church and world after it. Today, we can say that they won the good fight!
I do not understand why people cannot accept this fact, and why they dishonor the memory and actions of people such as Archbishop Valerian by continuing to deny them the deserved recognition that they ultimately won. Now it is time to move on and build up the church, not to still fight a battle that has already been won.
#7 Anonymous on 2009-10-27 10:20
And "moving on" would appropriately be the Romanian Patriarchate realizing that those who have been here 100 years are NOT "diaspora" Romanians who need to relinquish the Church built on this soil to a foreign bishop again! "Moving no" is much better understood as realizing the future of the Church on this continent is the diocese as part of the autocephelos Orthodox Church in America. Then we will relate to the Patriarch of our ethnic roots as an equal sister church, respectful of traditions and Tradition.
#8 Child of Romania, but an American Orthodox on 2009-10-27 17:55
Mr. Nemoianu asserts that:
"First of all, it should be repeated that the JDC is "negotiating" something that it has no mandate to negotiate. The JDC has no legal authority to "negotiate" a separation of the Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America from the Orthodox Church of America. With such a "proposal" the JDC is totally 'out of order". That should be enough reason to put an end to its activity. "
Though that might have been true at one point, it is no longer, for the Episcopate Congress voted to support the work of the JDC and its proposal for reunion as the basis for further discussion. This it has a mandate and is in order.
I concur with #2's description of the JDC proceedings as an eye-witness.
Those who are against the reunion should spend more time on actual reasons to be against it instead of personal attacks and circular reasoning. (Yes, it goes both ways!)
#9 Fact Check on 2009-10-28 08:31
The JDC is to negotiate. But WHAT? What kind of unity? There has been this grand assumption by the Episcopate's JDC members that going back under Bucharesti is the only option. Why??? Did they ever put forth the concept of having the Patriarch do the right thing and release his parishes to the Episcopate? Why not?
And by the way, I think signing some letter of intention WITHOUT any kind of mandate shortly after the Patriarchate put the "offer" on the table was really presumptuous.
#10 Child of Romania, but an American Orthodox on 2009-10-28 18:07
NOTE: Not a member of any Romanian jurisdiction.
Thank you for the education in the relationship between the Romanian Episcopate (ROEA) and the OCA.
If the minimalistic connection between the ROEA and the OCA is apparently based solely on political considerations from the Cold War, and not the Orthodox "Tradition" of a locally governed Church, why the concern over whether or not the ROEA returns to the Patriarchate of Romania?
#11 Mark C. Phinney on 2009-10-29 03:50
Colonialism is the building and maintaining of colonies in one territory by people from another territory. Sovereignty over the colony is claimed by the metropole. Social structure, government and economics within the territory of the colony are changed by the colonists. Colonialism normally refers to a period of history from the 15th to the 20th century when people from Europe built colonies on other continents. The reasons for the practice of colonialism at this time include: The profits to be made. To expand the power of the metropole. To escape persecution in the metropole. To convert the indigenous population to the colonists' religion. Some colonists also felt they were helping the indigenous population by bringing them Christianity and civilization. However, the reality was often subjugation, displacement or death.
There are four common characteristics of colonialism: 1) political and legal domination over an alien society, 2) relations of economics and political dependence, 3) exploitation between imperial powers and the colony and 4) racial and cultural inequality.
#12 Anonymous on 2009-10-29 05:54
The legality of the Joint Commission of Dialoge(JDC)
The JDC has no legal authority to move toward a separation of the "Vatra" Episcopate from OCA.More than that the "Vatra" Episcopate Congress can not confer such a mandate to the JDC.
On December 17,1970 "Vatra" Episcopate was accepted under the canonical jurisdiction of the OCA.An agreement,previously and unanimously approved by the "Vatra" Congress,on July 4th,1970,was signed.The article III,#d of that greement said;"The Congress of the Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America is the sole legislative body of the Romanian Orthodox Episcopate,having the right to approve and amend the Constitution and By-Laws of the Episcopate,provided that such amendments do not conteradict any of the terms of this agreement".
This agreement is today in full force.
The first,necesary and elementary,step in passing new legislation is to reconcile and make it consistent with the existing legal order.Consequently,until the mentioned paragraph will be rescinded,under the United States lawas governing agreements, any step toward the separation of the ROEA from the OCA are mute.Again consequently the JDC propoasals for a separation of the ROEA from OCA are null and void,out of order and out of legal order.
The members of the JDC should be under no illusion.Traspassing,in group or individually,has consequences ,especially after a warning was issued.
#13 Alexandru Nemoianu on 2009-10-29 06:45
Because, Mr Phinney, there are many, if not a majority of ROEA laity and American born ROEA clergy, sans Fr Lazar, who want to be part of an local church and not an appendage of a foreign one. And also, it is a cause worth fighting for as opposed to your "what's the big deal attitude." How self-serving.
#14 Anonymous on 2009-10-29 08:44
Over time, there have been many of us who have hoped that the Episcopate (Romanian diocese) would become more woven into the fabric of the OCA. That is part of the process of becoming rooted here in America and the OCA, participating more and more in the life of the autocephalos Church here. Others took advantage of growing numbers of immigrants to move things backward, which makes no sense if the people coming here today plan to stay in America. Their motives raise questions about how they understand the Church, beyond ethnic enclaves.
#15 Anonymous on 2009-10-29 10:14
So some Romanians are hotheads and prone to hyperbole -- I know that first hand --ahem .
But the issue is not about "blood," but unity in Christ. You are confusing blood ties with eccleasiology. We are all one in Christ, in Whom there is neither Jew nor Greek, free or bond -- and for that matter neither American, Romanian, Bulgarian, Albanian or Slav... We are citizens of no lasting city, but of paradise, and sojourning in this world. We must grow where we are planted. Those who strongly desire to by under the mother church/sub biserica mama, should move to the motherland/tara mama. Those who live here in America and build churches here in America, are part of the Church in America, not the Church in Romania. Why is that do hard to understand?
If they truly desire unity of the Romanians here, let BOR really show itself to be forward looking and fully recognize the ROEA/OCA and unite its small number of parishes with it -- that would be truly visionary. Instead, finally, they are asking the ROEA to repudiate its 80 year history here and to renounce the OCA. In the end it is nothing more than a diocese/real estate/financial/land/people grab -- the same goal they have been trying to attain for 80 years. But now they want you to hand it to them on a silver platter.
It seems shameful to me. Nu ti rusine?
Forgive me for any offense in expressing my opinion on this matter.
#16 Fr. Christopher Calin on 2009-10-29 10:25
Mr Nemoianu's obvious legal threat at the conclusion of his comment, which has already been used publicly by a few individuals as a means of intimidation toward the JDC commission members (again, an old-country communist trick), is weak at best. The JDC was given a charge by the Romanian Episcopate congress to formulate a proposal for unity and to present it back to the congress for consideration. It is the congress who makes decisions, not a JDC committee or any other committee. If the congress decides to accept a unity proposal, who then would he or others take to court? Each and every delegate and clergyman? He is entitled to his opinions as are all of us, but I do not believe that such threats have any merit in an intelligent, respectful conversation, especially when talking about the Church.
Furthermore, I wonder just how excited the United States courts are to rule on issues of ecclesiastical jurisdiction. Don't they usually just refer back to the highest executive body of the congregation in question?
#17 Anonymous on 2009-10-29 11:34
I'd like to know which parishes actually do receive funds from the OCA??
#18 Fr. Christopher Calin on 2009-10-29 12:45
Wow, sounds like the OCA in Alaska...
#19 Moses on 2009-10-29 15:11
Of course, any proposal the JDC develops has no legal authority by itself. It would have to be ratified by an Episcopate Congress which has the authority. No one has ever denied that. Just like any piece of legislation, the proposal is developed in committee to come up with a document that reflects a solution for the larger body to decide upon. There is nothing nefarious about that.
If ratified, that proposal then goes to the Holy Synod which is the final authority. The Holy Synod has the right to effectively "veto" such a proposal, particularly if such a proposal violates canonical order (which it may in fact do). Whether the Synod has the backbone (and resources) to enforce a veto is entirely another matter. If they accept the proposal it would likely require a mutal rescinding of the Dec. 17, 1970 agreement by both parties.
Thus the JDC's work is not out of order, nor illegal.
#20 Fact Check on 2009-10-30 07:15
The Romanian-American Orthodox Episcopate of America (ROEA),as part of the Orthodox Church of America (OCA),has been given the precious gift of freedom to grow and flourish in North America, without the religious and political hindrances so prevalent in the Old World
The ROEA and OCA are native organically established and developed institutions,as American as apple pie. After over one hundred years,most Romanian Americans/Canadians and their families,including those newer immigrants from Romania and adjacent countries are here to stay and establish roots here in North America.Why should the ROEA exchange fresh organic apple pie for imported stale mamaliga (corn meal mush)?
For those Romanian Americans/Canadians who desire to be subjugated both religously and thus politically to the dictates of a former treacherous fascist ,later communist and now neo-communist state,they have several options including membership in the Romanian Orthodox Archdiocese of America (ROAA), which is already under the jurisdiction of the Romanian Patriarchate.
By attacking a well known respected and published Romanian-American historian and scholar, Alexander Nemoianu, the anonomously signed comments by sycophants both within and outside of the ROEA , do a great disservice to both the Romanian-American church and community as well as the OCA.
(Mr.) Carmen D. Valentino
Member, Descent of the Holy Spirit Romanian Orthodox Church(Elkins Park/Philadelphia.Founded 1913)
Vice-President & Museum Curator Societatea Banatiana-V.Alecsandri. (Founded 1906)
Fulbright Scholar and Researcher, (Vienna,1968-9;Bucurest,1971-2)
Romanian-AmericanCommissioner,Pennsylvania Ethnic Heritage Commission (1990-94)
#21 (Mr.)Carmen D. Valentino on 2009-10-30 08:22
I would respectfully suggest that we refrain from such assumptions that "many" or "most" clergy and laity want or don't want something. The fact that the lay and clergy delegates to the ROEA congress (in a 2 lay to 1 clergy proportion) overwhelmingly approved the unity proposal as a basis to continue discussions would indicate the exact opposite of your assumption.
So unless you can produce written notes from a majority of ROEA parishioners (and I mean actual paid members, not outsiders) indicating they are in agreement with your position, I do not think that you can accurately make such general statements.
P.S. As a matter of fact, 26 out of approximately 146 ROEA clergy are American-born (US or Canada). And less than 10 of the 26 are priests actually produced by the ROEA in all these years.
#22 Anonymous on 2009-10-30 09:34
Reading these comments, I feel I should write something positive about a Romanian Orthodox person... a man... a priest... someone who is good, in the midst of all of these difficult comments. I visited Dormition Monastery a few years ago, and had the opportunity to be in the presence of Father Roman Braga. Even now, though I have been discouraged to the breaking point by people in the Orthodox Church, I think of him, and remember his smiling face, and my soul is comforted and joyful. This is the influence a good and holy man can have on those who have contact with him, no matter how small that contact may be. I hope that this post brings him to others' thoughts and prayers as well, and cheers you up, and reminds us that all is not bad. This is only a little window of time in the long history of Orthodoxy. There is still much good here, too.
#23 Anonymous on 2009-10-30 12:02
I am well aware of blood ties and eccleasiology. That is why I firmly believe we should accept all people. But why is it that many of those who are against such unity are the same people who I have heard speak about "those people" and "they should just go back to Romania, we don't need them here" and who really treat our immigrants as 2nd class citizens. I see it with my own eyes and hear it with my own ears. And it disgusts me. Are we supposed to set-up some kind of exclusive "American Church" where only people who are "apple pie" are allowed? I know you don't advocate this concept, but there are those who do and I wish it would stop.
#24 Anonymous on 2009-10-30 12:14
Calling white black!
. The tactic of "turning the tables" and of calling white black is the new weapon of the partisans of the subordination of the ROEA to the Romanian Patriarchate. The tactic, obviously, was the result of collusion between them and the "movers and shakers" of the Romanian Patriarchate.
These individuals(fierce partisans of the anonymous letters) are calling, those who oppose the idea of subordination ,...communists and accuse them of making 'incendiary" declarations.. Such" logic" is typical for the totalitarian sycophantic mentality; it is the tactic of calling white black and vice versa. It is also a classic example of an oxymoron (the combination in one expression of terms that contradict themselves.).It is obvious that those who are for the status quo, for the existing and legal existing situation, can not make "incendiary" appeals;" incendiary" meaning to be for a violent and radical change, consequently, exactly those who plan to change the status of the "Vatra" are incendiary.
Promoting a return to the situation that existed before WWII is absurd.
The Romanian-American community is not, in form and in spirit, what is was before WW II and the Romanian Patriarchate is not, in form and most definitely in spirit, what it was before WW II.Between what the Romanian American community was before WW II and what it is now it is a difference of category and the same is true in regard to the Romanian Patriarchate. It is unacceptable, according to any intellectual standards, to compare things that belong to different categories. It is like saying that children who move, when mature, from their parents's house, in order to have their own family, are...against the idea of family.)But this tactic will not work.
Since 1939, when Bishop Policarp returned to Romania and never came back, the Romanian-American community gained its historical identity, as part of the American Nation. Subordination to a foreign entity, i.e.the Romanian Patriarchate, would be against the historical evolution of the Romanian-American community, it would amount to a voluntary marginalization, to a voluntary gettoization.Such a giant step backward would amount to a historic catastrophe for the Romanian-American community.
The Romanian Patriarchate today, in form and spirit, is but a cleptocratic entity. (Cleptocracy being a system where the leaders use their position to forward their personal interests.) The so called Romanian Orthodox "missionary" eparchy in America is but a relic of the cold war. The attempt to subordinate "Vatra" to the Romanian Patriarchate is a continuation of the Romanian communist policy; it is contrary to the historical interests of the Romanian-American community, it is, in form and spirit, contrary to the promotion of Orthodoxy and Orthodox unity in America, it is, in form and spirit, un-American.
This attempt will not pass!
#25 Alexandru Nemoianu on 2009-10-30 15:45
In the spirit of Christian charity, the ROEA (Vatra) co-operated in an avenue of cordial and ecumenical relationships,via the JDC (Joint Dialogue Commission) with both the Romanian Patriarchate and its "missionary" branch in the USA/Canada . AND THAT IS WHERE THE MATTER SHOULD HAVE STOPPED,considering a near sixty year long history of divisive problems and lawsuits with these Romanian entities.
Archbishop Nathaniel for years "talked the talk and walked the walk" for the OCA and North American Orthodox unity.
The question which now begs to be answered is why there is a recent change of attitude by many in the ROEA -especially amongst the clergy-sworn to Vatra fidelity- away from the OCA? Hmmmmmmmm,perhaps new vestments and travel grants to Romania??
(Mr.) Carmen D. Valentino
#26 (Mr.)Carmen D. Valentino on 2009-10-30 20:56
A few basics about communist tricks
One of the basic tactic employed by the communists in undermining the legally existing order was the creation of "commissions" ,with a semblance and trappings of legality. The purpose of those commissions was to work toward the destruction of the legally existing order.
In my opinion, in a typology of subversion, the tactics of the communist "commissions" and that of the JDC ,as per modus operandi,are not similar, they are identical. What is equally identical, again in my opinion, are the openly displayed disdain for what is legal order, what are rules, what is the experience of the past and especially for what is right.
Saying otherwise would be like saying that it is OK to have, in a Republic ,a state sanctioned "commission" working to install a monarchy.
For the fierce and brave "anonymous #2" that may be Ok but for any rational person it should be not. In addition.
In 2009 the parish general assemblies of the ROEA were instructed that they can not debate the proposals of the JDC .If that is not secretive what can be. The fact that the election of at least one delegate to the Congress was rigged and pushed through administrative means can be fully documented.
Attempts to intimidate and threaten administratively, through members of the JDC, the signer of this entry, who is neither clergy nor an employee of the ROEA,for the opinions he expressed, including the present one, can be equally fully documented.(And those who are responsible may still be slapped with a case of creating an hostile working environment.)
If a priest, working to undermine the canonical order of the canonical body he is part of, that is the OCA,is not in a state of canonical rebellion what should be done to be there?
#27 Alexandru Nemoianu on 2009-10-31 07:09
There has been a feeling for decades that the Episcopate is being taken over from within by the influx of clergy from Romania. This is not to make excuses for bigots who may treat the newcomers as interlopers or 2nd class citizens. That is dead wrong and worthy to be renounced.
All members of the Episcopate are equal, but the newcomers need to learn respect for the history of the Episcopate, and for the sacrifice and hard work that provided them with churches to come to and to attend here in the US. That is often sadly lacking. They sneer and jeer when English is used in the Liturgy (I experienced this first hand), they reject a progressive Eucharistic theology, they distance themselves from other Orthodox churches based on political or historical rivalries brought with them from Romania. I am tired of being accused of "going to the Russians" by some of these very people, as if I should be ashamed of myself. It was these close-minded, ethnocentric attitudes that drove me out of the Episcopate years ago. Out of a church school of 60 children at St. Mary Church in Chicago, only 5 of them remain in the Church! There was no pastoral care for them after from Vatra camp -- it became irrelevant to them and their lives.
i do not propose an "American pie" Orthodoxy -- far from it, but i do advocate that we be realistic. The newcomers here have no intention to return to Romania to live.They are here. There is a Church here. The BOR has no business directing/controlling/supervising/providing chrism/approving episcopal candidates for Church life here. The Romanian church here has grown and thrived in this land under the OCA. The union of the ROEA & ROAA would create yet another anti-canonical entity, where parishes are foreign embassies, or as i see it, ethnic cultural clubs with a cross on the roof. The promise of granting it "maximal autonomy" is a mirage as witnessed by recent threats of the BOR toward it's own ROAA recently ("Unite with the ROEA or we will create another Diocese there to supplant you both"). The incentive of raising it to the status of a "Metropolia" and endowing its Primate with the title Metropolitan is a meaningless bit of flattery that only feeds the lowest desires of our passions.
The BOR is rich, they can and have offered great "incentives" -- the same ones they offered to Archbishop Valerian time and again, and which he refused.
It is not just about communism and militant atheism anymore. A greater matter of eccleasiology is at stake.
Let's see common work between the two Dioceses, a manifest unity rather than a administrative one. Jointly held Congresses, joint efforts in publications, internet and mission building. Joint charitable outreach here and in Romania... but not a capitulation to the outmoded demands the BOR have been making since 1950.
#28 Fr. Christopher Calin on 2009-10-31 12:01
Fr. Roman Braga is my spiritual Father.
#29 Alexandru Nemoianu on 2009-10-31 16:49
Did they ever put forth the concept of having the Patriarch do the right thing and release his parishes to the Episcopate? Why not?
Excellent questions. I'm unclear as to why this is a negotiation , as opposed to a planning process implementing explicit ecclesiological principles.
What explicit principles rule the day here?
#30 A Fellow Orthodox Christian on 2009-11-01 12:00
The JDC was "commended" by Archbishop Nathaniel
The fierce and brave Anonymous#2 flatters himself saying,' Archbishop Nathaniel commended the JDC".In fact Anonymous #2 is totally wrong in spirit and he put words in Archbishop Nathaniel's mouth and attributed him intentions he never had.
In fact what Archbishop Nathaniel said was that the JDC did a good job. That was an expression of Archbishop Nathaniel' good heart. Archbishop Nathaniel did what a good hearted teacher does when interacting with, let say so, a less gifted student. A good hearted teacher will not say about the work of such a student what would be the crude truth," you did a lousy job".No,he will say ," I trust you did your best". That doesn't mean the job is good. It might mean that in the rather poor judgment of that 'less gifted student".
That is what Archbishop Nathaniel did. He told to the members of the JDC,who in my opinion are those less gifted students, "you did a good job". In fact and in effect that is to say, I know that better can not be expected from your lot. But by any stretch that doesn't mean that Archbishop Nathaniel said that the product of JDC' job, their "proposals", are good and even less that he approves them. That might be in the rather unpredictable imagination and wishful thinking of the fierce and brave Anonymous #2,but that doesn't amount to very much. In my opinion the words of Archbishop Nathaniel rather displayed an intention to ease out the JDC.
#31 Alexandru Nemoianu on 2009-11-01 16:07
You attack people for putting "words in Archbishop Nathaniel's mouth", but then the rest of your comment is spent putting words in Archbishop Nathaniel's mouth. I think that the Archbishop is more than capable of stating his own positions and does not need your reinterpretation or translation or whatever on this website. How about we all stick to the topics for a healthy debate and please, stop with all the personal insults too. I'm starting to get flashbacks of ALL CAPS GUY.
#32 Anonymous on 2009-11-02 09:05
This may be one of the most significant bits of information. I constantly hear the ROEA lauded as a thriving, American oriented church. The Reality is that it does not sustain itself except by the inclusion of new immigrants, including immigrant clergy. The bulk of the current Episcopate has no nostaligc ties to the Trifa era and naturally feels more kinship with BOR. If the episcoate could demonstrate how many American clergy and parishes it has actually produced there might be something to talk about.
#33 Fact Check on 2009-11-02 16:19
One should recall that the JDC began as a diplomatic effort between the ROEA and the ROAA, not the ROEA and the Patriarch. Part of the reason the JDC proposal does not include what you are suggesting is that the JDC is also composed of 5 members of the ROAA, who have something to say about their destiny. They do not necessarily wish to be removed from their Mother Church. Thus the proposal to release the ROAA to the ROEA under the OCA was not put on the table. The ROAA must consent to any proposal as well.
#34 Fact Check on 2009-11-02 16:26
The problem with putting words in Abp Nathaniels' mouth stems from his own speaking problems - he either doesn't say anything, or he speaks out of both sides of his mouth! Neither of these ways have been helpful the past 25 years, but when it comes to the whole "reunification" mess, it has only made things worse, He is a man with a good heart, but feeling he doesn't have to communicate honestly with his flock does not well serve anyone involved. The machinations of the JDC prove that.
#35 Another anon on 2009-11-03 05:21
The JDC members from each jurisdiction are to represent their own diocese. So to say that there are JDC members who don't want to leave their mother church as if it is ONE unified body and not a commission comprised of two jurisdictions shows a true lack of understanding of the Episcopate as part of the OCA, and not some vestige of the BOR.
#36 Anonymous on 2009-11-03 11:14
Congratulations to Fr. Christopher Calin - not only for signing his full name - but also for his careful analysis of the numerous problems inherent in the proposed union of the two Romanian-American dioceses, ROEA and ROAA. Such a "union" would indeed create anti-canonical ethnocentric religious nightmare which is to be avoided at all costs by all parties involved.
Why would any Romanian-American(or convert) either new immigrant or 'old timer' desire the canonical tutelage of a Romanian patriarch who uses bullying threats even to his own underlings in America?
His insidious offer of creating a metropolia here with Archbishop Nathaniel at its head is in reality a demonical temptation to the curse of power. A neo-communist offer of"maximal autonomy" is a mere illusion of grandeur, it being simply an extension of the of the religious and political satrap system created by the Romanian kleptocratic church-state.
The Romanian-American Orthodox Church flourished here in the USA, because the majority of Romanian-Americans,their offspring,converts and new immigrants learned to appreciate the blessings inherent in the highly cherished American constitutional guarantee of separation of church and state.Any move away from the canonical protection of the OCA by the Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America would be an unmitigated disaster for all concerned parties.
(Mr.) Carmen D. Valentino
#37 (Mr.)Carmen D. Valentino on 2009-11-05 13:31
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