Wednesday, October 19. 2011
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How do you consecrate three bishops on the same day?
(Editor's note: Not the first time. Several previous bishops for the American Archdiocese were consecrated at the same liturgy some years ago. It appears this is a local Antiochian tradition. )
#1 Dmitry on 2011-10-19 19:01
This was done in 2004 with Bishop Alexander, Mark and Thomas in Damacus as well; and the Patriarch of Antioch has also done this when he have conscrated 3 bishops earler this year as well.
#2 Anonymous on 2011-10-20 12:54
Boy, am I glad they're all being consecrated in the "Old Country." The Holy Spirit works better there, don't ya' know!
#3 anonymous on 2011-10-20 13:53
I have a few questions:
a. Is the PAtriarch of Antiochis the Ranking Hierarch of the Antiochian Patrichate?
b. If so dose he have the right and honor to Conscrate a new Bishop for one of its archdiocese? No different than MEtropolitan Jonah to Conscrate a new Bishop for the OCA?
c. Finally what is the big deal where they are conscrated, It hink ti will be an honor for them to be conscrated by their Patriarch?
Finally it is safe to go to Lebanon now, if I had the time I would be going ont his trip.
#4 Anonymous on 2011-10-20 15:16
The Antiochians in the US love to promote themselves as an "autonomous" church. So, why are these fellows being consecrated outside the US? The truth is, the Pat. in Damascus, Syria still wants ALL the bishops under his omophor, to be known by him & their Synod. Ultimately, the Antiochian Archdiocese in the US is not really an American church. And although + Philip wants tight control over all his priests & bishops here, Damascus still has lots to say about what goes on in America. Once + Philip is replaced, for whatever reason, Damascus will have more to say about what goes on in America. Ultimately, all of this is NON-CANONICAL. Foreign bishops have no authority outside their immediate diocese, even Patriarchs. So, all the Orthodox who aren't under an autocephalous church in America, are really NON-CANONICAL; Antiochians, Greeks, Russians, etc. Yet, these churches continue to ignore Orthodox Canon Law and pretend their operations are normal - they aren't!
#5 anonymous on 2011-10-21 10:20
I have been curious since news first broke of the Church of Antioch electing 12 new auxiliary bishops many months ago. Including the three from the North American archdiocese, 15 new Antiochian bishops will have been consecrated this year. This increases the number of bishops within the Patriarchate by more fifty percent, with almost all of them being placed in Europe and North America. Is it because these dioceses were under-served by the present Metropolitans? Is it because the membership rolls of the churches there have blossomed and multiplied? If this truly is a response by the Patriarch and the Holy Synod of Antioch to better administer the church in these areas of the world then may God bless them and grant them all many years!
If however, this is a disguised effort to swell the ranks of the Antiochian bishops to have greater influence in the Episcopal Assemblies in the United States and Europe, or an effort to have greater influence on the agenda and composition of the future Great and Holy Council, or both, then it is nothing but empty politics. We already know that the auxiliary bishops in North America do very little in terms of helping to administer the archdiocese other than making occasional pastoral visits, so please pardon my skepticism that this is anything more than an effort to pad votes in certain areas. If that is the case, then I hope the results are far from the intent. I hope and pray that these new bishops prove themselves to be good and faithful stewards of the Church, worthy overseers of the dioceses and archdioceses to which they are assigned, examples of the servants in Christ we are all called to be and followers of no political agenda other than Christ.
Praying for the best from all of them, I'll place my skepticism and any canonical questions regarding the consecrations aside and offer my long-distance (since I won't be in Lebanon this December) Axios!
(Editor's note: While one can join in the Axios, keep that skepticism nearby. It is not by accident that the Antiochians, and Russians, have both created 13 more bishops each in the past few years: others are following along, if more slowly. Its an episcopal arms race - just like the race in battleships in the 1920's. A formula, like then, will have to be developed lest we end up awash in mitres as more and more are created for a council that most likely will never be held in our lifetimes.)
#6 Anonymous on 2011-10-21 11:26
We a fr form canical normality in the US and I agree the PAtriarch of antioch and the Holy Synod in antioch have their own Agenda's
The Antiochian archdiocese in US have Self Rule, we are allowed to nominate and elect our own bishops the only condition is they must be conscrated byt he Patriarch. It is a improvement since the early 1990's when Bishop BASIL was elected.
#7 Anonymous on 2011-10-21 11:42
If you say it is uncanonical, so is your preferred OCA no matter how you try to explain it. We all are no matter what, so just hope for unity and continue to go to church.
#8 Happy on 2011-10-21 11:50
The AOCANA's charter from the Antiochian Patriarchate specifies that episcopal consecrations are performed at the Patriarchate. Although their charter does establish an autonomous church (referred to as "self-ruled" at the Patriarch's insistence), I think the consecration practice is a way of demonstrating their spiritual connection with the Patriarchate.
Also, you really should refrain from calling these consecrations "non-canonical." North America is an extraordinary situation canonically. There are those who would call the OCA non-canonical, due to the secretive manner in which a Church, controlled by an atheistic, Communist government, granted unilateral autocephaly, while existing along side other canonical ecclesial jurisdictions; I'm not making that claim, but that claim is just as incorrect as your assertion. Orthodox Christians in North America should work together toward a administratively unified church, and not attack and arrogantly question the canonicity of their fellow jurisdictions, jurisdictions which maintained communion with the Metropolia for the 46 (+/-) years it was under anathema from its mother church, the Church of Russia. (I am not in the OCA or the AOCANA.)
#9 B.W. Trakas on 2011-10-22 03:19
"If you say it is uncanonical, so is your preferred OCA no matter how you try to explain it."
OK Happy, explain! Remember, there are no canon laws stating who can or cannot grant autocephaly. The OCA is in Holy Communion with ALL the canonical Orthodox Churches around the world, de facto, recognized & canonical. Formal recognition by Istanbul of autocephaly is bogus!
#11 Anonymous on 2011-10-23 08:52
OK, the Episcopal Assembly, formerly SCOBA...the Pat. of Istanbul thought is wise to organize all of these Episcopal Assemblies around the world according to the "ancient" DIPTYCHS of the Church. Diptychs, an arcane liturgical term that describes the order in which Orthodox churches commemorate each other at their services: 1) Constantinople (Istanbul); 2) Alexandria; 3) Antioch 4) Jerusalem; 5) Russia....From this, Istanbul wants to extend it's authority over the entire world as an "Eastern Pope." While ignoring Canon Law that foreign bishops have no authority outside their immediate territory, these old country bishops wish to usurp authority around the world which isn't theirs! On the Episcopal Assembly in the U.S., the Bishop of the Greeks is 1st; the Bishop of the Arabs (Damascus/Antioch) is 2nd; Russia's Bishop is 3rd - UTTERLY RIDICULOUS! Totally ignoring the OCA which was the first established Orthodox Church in America in 1794 established by the Russian Mission. Then in 1970, granted AUTOCEPHALY by it's mother church of Russia. The ancient DIPTYCHS have no bearing outside the ancient Roman/Byzantine Empire. Certainly not establishing territorial authority around the world. According to Orthodox Canon Law, the head of the OCA is the 1st in order in North America; not Greek, Antioch (Damascus), Russia or any other church. In the same manner, in Russia, the Pat. of Moscow is the 1st. Etc.
#12 Any Moose on 2011-10-23 09:23
Those who have the money rule the so-called church of Antioch. They sold out their bishops a year ago. Now with the problems in Syria the church of Antioch may soon be dropped from the dyptychs.
(Editor's note: That is absurd and ridiculous.)
#13 Anonymous on 2011-10-23 13:05
Work together toward administrative unity? Pleeeese; the Pat. of Istanbul wants this ONLY if it is under him. Read Orthodox Canon Law - he has no authority outside his immediate territory. This is why the Episcopal Assemblies are bogus. Every church in a territory must organize under themselves and their own bishops ruling over their own churches without foreign interference - this is Orthodox Canon Law. There is only one autocephalous Orthodox Church in America and all Orthodox are required to organize under her - not the Greeks, Russians or other. Insistence on non-canonical structures as "normal" or "acceptable" only keep all the Orthodox in North america continually divided. We don't believe in an "Eastern Pope" and the Orthodox have no "Ecumenical Patriarch" - this is false terminology. It could have been acceptable during the Roman/Byzantine Empire, but even Rome rejected the title.
#14 Anonymous on 2011-10-23 15:53
Absolutely CORRECT and WHY dispute it. For too many years all we heard is recognize your Mother Church. Did so .. Autocephaly resulted! Why swhould other4 juris. join? Too convenient to belong to a far off See. Someday, someday .... the TRUTH shall make you FREE!
#15 Anonymous Mid West on 2011-10-23 21:27
New Bishops only ceremonial with no local clergy councils allowed, no budeget, no say as to transferring clergy. Mostly so Metr. Philip can assign 8 Bishops to cover the events he won't attend (or want to attend).
As to MidWest5 Conf. he rebuked Bishop Mark for poor attendance at 400. Then his appearance gave BUT 200 more this year. What a gain? Skip thev economy, high room and activity bk rates, etc. Too many a grand wqaste of time. Clergy enjoy as time away from parish and all and every expense paid by the local church. Way to go as my parishioners say!
#16 Anonymous Priest on 2011-10-23 21:33
Actually, Bishop Basil was nominated by the General Assembly of the Archdiocese in a manner similar to the nominations that have occurred since "self-rule" was adopted in 2004. A better example for your point would be the arrival of Bishop Joseph and Bishop Demetri in the mid-1990s, when nothing resembling any public input whatsoever preceded their assignment to the Archdiocese.
#17 David Najjar on 2011-10-23 22:11
---Here's the Damascus & govt supported by the Antiochian Archdiocese.---
U.S. Ambassador Leaves Syria Due To 'Credible Threats'
October 24, 2011
by MARK MEMMOTT
"The U.S. has pulled its ambassador out of Syria over security concerns, blaming President Bashar Assad's government for the threats.," The Associated Press writes. "State Department spokesman Mark Toner said Monday that Ambassador Robert Ford returned to Washington this weekend after 'credible threats against his personal safety.' "
The wire service adds that "Haynes Mahoney, the Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Embassy in Damascus, confirmed that Ford was out of the country but emphasized that Washington has not formally recalled him."
"At this point, we can't say when he will return to Syria. It will depend on our assessment of Syrian regime-led incitement and the security situation on the ground.
"We hope that the Syrian regime will end its incitement campaign against Ambassador Ford."
Reuters reported earlier that according to "Western diplomats," the ambassador "left Syria over the weekend."
As we reported on Sept. 29, Ford has gotten considerable attention for his meetings with opposition figures as protests against the Assad regime have continued over recent months. His efforts have not gone over well with the Assad regime. Government supporters at one point threw stones, eggs and tomatoes at Ford's convoy as he went to meet with an opposition leader. They also surrounded the building where the ambassador was meeting with that opposition figure.
Ford has become known for the condemnations of the Assad regime that he's posted on Facebook. In one, he wrote that:
"Perhaps the biggest difference now between the Syrian regime and most of the international community is that the regime has not acknowledged that its forces are often killing unarmed protesters. Unfortunately some Americans in Iraq and Afghanistan committed violations and were imprisoned for their actions. Have any Syrian security members been punished for killing unarmed protesters or torturing prisoners? Changing the mentality of the security forces might take time, but a government that wants to build credibility on human rights and reform has to start sometime and somewhere with concrete steps."
Ford has been the ambassador in Syria since January. Other posts he has filled include deputy chief of mission at the U.S. embassy in Baghdad and ambassador to Algeria
#18 anonymous on 2011-10-24 05:54
It is sad you see it that way.
#19 Happy on 2011-10-24 06:26
Not sure where to put this, but has anyone else seen this...?
My piont was When Bishop BASIL was Con scerated was the Antiochian archdiocese nominated hima nd the Holy Synod had to Elect him, now we can enominated and our Lcoal synod can elect him howerver the Patriarch have to pribiliage as head of the Antiochian Church to conscrated.
We have seen here many comments on Canons and the issue of Foreign Bishop, keep in mind we are unconical in the US sicne we have overlapping Jurisdiction, how can someone say Foriegn Bishops is unconical when they have overlapping jurisdictions in the US.
#21 Anonymous on 2011-10-24 10:30
I heard this this morning ont he news!
My only comment, if a US Ambassador is causing internal problems for the country he is ambassador he is the U.s did the right think to ahve him, leave. Ambssador Ford and come close to crossing the line and interferring with internal syrian matters and some people in Syria as citizens have addressed their concerns, perhaps in not the right manner. Myabe Ambassador Ford should think how his actions could effect a solution,w hich he now see the affects of it.
#22 Anonymous on 2011-10-24 11:59
Go visit Syria and see for yourself. I know at least 2 dozen that have gone safely and returned...it is very localized and exactly the same as Fr. Reardon explained from his journey. These are people that were born there too. I'm not saying it's 100% safe, but then again is it safe when people come over here to visit us. Not really either if you go to the ruff neighborhoods. We wish to live in an idealistic world but Assad is really not as bad as he appears to be on western media. If anything, he protected my ancestors there who are Christians. Let's hope it doesn't go back to the way it was when my great grandparents fleed for in order to survive in the early 1900's due to their religion. Thank God Assad allows my other relatives to express themselves religiously through the Orthodox Faith TODAY and hopefully tomorrow unlike what will happen just like in Egypt to the Copts. God bless them all, those who are innocent in all this.
(Editor's note: No disagrees that the Middle East is a rough neighborhood. I am curious about your moral algebra however. You liked the senior Assad because he kept religious minorities ( such as Orthodox) "safe", although in Homs alone in the 1980's he ordered 25,000 people killed. Now the son is doing it throughout Syria and 3,000 have died so far. Does this make the son better than the father, since fewer people have to die to keep Orthodox "safe"? Is this really how Jesus would approach the situation? Really? Is that going to persuade people in and outside of Syria that the Church is worthy - that it can only exist if others are killed to protect it? Is that really the Orthodox moral tradition? Just asking.)
#23 Antiochian on 2011-10-24 13:49
My point was not to discuss the canonicity of multiple consecrations or consecrating bishops in someone else's Cathedral. I'll leave that to others more qualified. I would agree with you, Anonymous, and simply say that pointing out such matters in a land of overlapping multiple jurisdictions seems to me very much like the pot calling the kettle black.
My point was that we have lost a tremendous opportunity to have a meaningful connection with our bishops as true shepherds of the flock. To return to your example of Bishop Basil, my parents were delegates to the Convention where he was nominated and cast their ballots for him. Although it was the Holy Synod that formally elected him in Damascus, he was consecrated a bishop at his Cathedral in Wichita. I felt blessed to attend that wonderful event, as did a great many others from this country. Similarly, my father attended the consecration of Bishop Antoun in New York. As a result, a real connection is developed that goes beyond "foreign" or "domestic" bishops. The laity of the Archdiocese got to proclaim Axios for its own bishops. There is no substitute for that.
When self-rule was being drawn up, it was a trade-off to consecrate the bishops in Syria or Lebanon, but then to enthrone them within their respective dioceses on this continent. Under the new interpretation of self-rule, it wouldn't make sense to have any more enthronements here, so the opportunity to allow the people of this Archdiocese to come together and be instrumental in the making of these new bishops is lost. I don't think it makes them any less of bishops, but it is a missed opportunity that need not be so. Part of the devotion that so many in our Archdiocese feel for St. Raphael of Brooklyn is that connection that he had to our parishes, by visiting our ancestors, baptizing, marrying and burying them, consecrating their churches, and by being consecrated a bishop for them in front of them in their new homeland. Perhaps these new hierarchs will develop that connection with the people after they take up their new ministries, but they--and we--are denied the opportunity have such a meaningful start to their ministry.
Regardless of my opinion or the opinions of others, these are the rules we have, and we must live with them and pray for the best. God willing, someday soon there will be true unity in the Orthodox Church in this country, where American bishops and priests will minister to American parishes, building up the body of Christ here, and by extension, everywhere.
#24 David Najjar on 2011-10-24 14:25
To be honest it's the better of the 2 evils to say. It's never at this moment in time nor after Assad be the way Jesus wanted it because their faith does not permit it, however Assad does permit it. The reason people who have died so far in the uprising is because of they were being violent first. I am for democracy and freedoms from dictators, however this is not the dynamic in the middle east. They do not know how it works and it was not built that way so if you think that removing Assad will make it more Christ like than I pray you are right but realistically you are wrong because Christians will not be able to pray freely anymore there. If I were to live there I would allow Assad to stay there so I can pray freely without the threat of being persecuted. Else I would need to live in secret much like the Russians did in order to practice the Orthodox Faith.
The only reason the Assad is being painted in the wrong color is because he looks the weakest in terms of an ally to Iran. I'm not stupid. The western media is totally making this man look like a tyrant when in fact he is not. I really feel sorry for him for not getting the at least decent picture that he is. If you really want to see for yourself, i suggest you order Al Jazeera in Arabic and just watch the tv rather...even if you can not understand the language. Pictures paint the true story, much like our icons do for those that can not hear or read.
#25 Antiochian on 2011-10-25 06:35
Plkease accept my apology for typing errors still getting adjusted to my tablet.
#26 Anonymous on 2011-10-25 12:47
David I agree with you 100% regarding the personal connection by witnessing the conscration. I wish these Bishop-Elects were conscrated here, I feel they should be here, howevr the PAtriarch is exercising his right which we must respect.
#27 Anonymous on 2011-10-25 12:52
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