Comments Posted By Carl Kraeff
Displaying 31 To 60 Of 1,742 Comments
Dear James–Please tell me if that is your baptismal name so that I can add it to my prayer list.
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On May 13, 2013 @ 11:03 am
Nate–George has graciously invited any and all persons to post on his blog, including those who do not identify themselves. I do not think that CQ is to be criticized for obliging our gracious host.
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On May 6, 2013 @ 5:02 pm
My idea is that we were once a confederacy and should be organized along the same principle in the future. I base my idea on the following principles:
1. The Ignation model of an ontologically complete Church: One bishop, surrounded by his priests, deacons and laity.
2. Apostolic Canon 34 that defines the relationship between these bishops: everybody operates on the principle of unanimity on matters that affect all. The Presiding Bishop presides but is bound by the same rule of unanimity: “The bishops of every nation must acknowledge him who is first among them and account him as their head, and do nothing of consequence without his consent; but each may do those things only which concern his own parish, and the country places which belong to it. But neither let him (who is the first) do anything without the consent of all; for so there will be unanimity, and God will be glorified through the Lord in the Holy Spirit.”
3. The involvement of the entire laos in some aspects of the church’s ministries in line with the New Testament. We have yet to figure out what the role of the laity should be in those nations where there is a separation of church and state.
4. While there is no question that a ruling bishop is the highest authority over his own diocese, I would hesitate to characterize him as a monarch. It may well be a good term but humanity’s experience with monarchs and bishops who act in an autocratic fashion are a hindrance to using that term without qualifications. I would think that “servant-leader” would be a better term instead, based on the Lord’s instructions at the Last Supper in John 13: “12 So when He had washed their feet, taken His garments, and sat down again, He said to them, “Do you know what I have done to you? 13 You call Me Teacher and Lord, and you say well, for so I am. 14 If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. 15 For I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you. 16 Most assuredly, I say to you, a servant is not greater than his master; nor is he who is sent greater than he who sent him.”
Added: I just noticed Michael’s comment that follows. I guess that we are in agreement. Here is another thought that I had posted elsewhere: “We are so stuck on models that were developed for reasons of state that we cannot see a simple solution. Let’s look past the Roman, Ottoman, Russian Empire models, as well as the nation/state models that came about in the 19th Century. Let’s look back to the Holy Scriptures and to the Apostolic Church instead. What we have is the Great Commission that tells us to bring into Christ’s Body all nations, as well as city-churches that were ontologically complete (Ruling bishop surrounded by his priests, deacons and laity). You go forward in time a bit and in the Apostolic Canon 34 we see the principle of how to get organized beyond the city-church level (today’s equivalent being a diocese). You have a Metropolitan or senior bishop, a primate (first among equals) whose job is to make sure that unanimity of the ruling bishops is required to change anything affecting all dioceses.”
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On May 6, 2013 @ 4:29 pm
It is far from a “glowing” endorsement. Why don’t you read one more time?
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On May 13, 2013 @ 12:52 pm
Dear Albert–I was initially going to agree with you that I have been inconsistent. OTOH, one individual was the Metropolitan of my church and the other is a person whom I do not know. In the case of +Jonah, I was affected by my feelings for him, turning from adoration and respect to bitter disappointment. I was also affected by the vicious, evil and unconscionable attacks by his supporters against, what seemed to had been, the rest of the church. Nonetheless, I see that I was indeed judgmental in the former case, for which I am indeed sorry but, as my remark above about his supporters shows, I am unable to shed completely. I clearly have work to do. In Christ, Kyrill
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On May 12, 2013 @ 6:30 pm
I have no fondness whatsoever for some of the ancient practices where adulterers, murderers, thieves, and sodomites were made to stand outside the doors for certain amount of time, then permitted into the narthex for another period of time, etc… I prefer a kinder and gentler approach, where sinners are met where they are (a counseling term/tactic that actually works) instead of met by the back of one’s hand. I have the feeling that some folks who advocate the stricter approach are doing so for their own benefit and not for the benefit of the sinners. I am not going to go chapter and verse about the plank in one’s eye, the publican and the pharisee, the woman being stoned, etc. for you know them all. I am happy for my priest to handle sinners of whom I am first.
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On May 9, 2013 @ 10:12 am
Dear Albert–It is precisely because I have no knowledge about what steps you took before posting your accusation that I posted what actions I would have taken IAW Biblical principles. You have obviously concluded that it is right for you to go to “entire church.” I am not going to judge you. I also refuse to judge Father Jillions, the man in question (whom I do not know), or Metropolitan Tikhon, not only because I do not have direct knowledge of the situation and have not proceeded through the steps that are required, but also because it is not my place to do so. The only thing that I can do is to affirm the traditional Orthodox position on homosexuality. I have done so repeatedly and publicly in more than one forum. I have also talked in private with folks about this issue but those conversations are none of anyone’s business.
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On May 9, 2013 @ 10:00 am
This is truly a strange conversation.
You say: Sexual minority does not exist
I say: I agree with you that the notion of sexual minority should not exist
You say (in effect): Why don’t you agree with me?
You and I agree. Period.
Any difference between us is about the approach.
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On May 9, 2013 @ 7:23 am
Dear Albert–Here is what I would have done:
Not being a fly-on-the-wall during this man’s confessions, I would not have assumed that he is an unrepentant, public sinner. Thus, I would not have assumed, as you have done, that his active homosexual lifestyle has been condoned by Fr Jillions or Metropolitan Tikhon. I certainly would not have concluded that these two OCA leaders’ position on homosexuality has softened. Finally, I would not have brought this up into the public square until I exhausted the steps spelled out in the Holy Bible.
(1) I would have asked this man is he is an unrepentant active homosexual.
(2) if the answer were in the affirmative, I would have taken this matter with Fr. Jillions and given him sufficient time to do his thing.
(3) If Fr Jillions did nothing after a while, say three months, I would have written my complaint to Metropolitan Tikhon.
(4) If the Metropolitan did not do anything after a while, say 12 months, then I would bring it up to the entire church, to include what you have done on Monomakhos after less than a handful of days since this event.
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On May 8, 2013 @ 3:06 pm
Dear Michael, Christ is risen!
While I agree with you that the notion of a sexual minority should not exist, the term itself does in fact exist, most importantly by those who believe themselves to be part of a sexual minority. It would be hard to talk to them productively if we are to confront them with a crude rejection of their identity. It seems to me that an element of civilized discourse is not to offend unnecessarily. That does not mean that we need to give up our convictions; it means that we should value saving souls more than we value not being squishy. Frankly, I am surprised with the hyper-Orthodox attitudes about the stance that our church officials must take regarding homosexuality. At one time I had believed that it was a smokescreen to defend +Jonah. I am coming to believe that some folks are truly terrified by the prospect that our Holy Orthodox Church will go squishy on this issue and become another ECUSA. Either way, they react way too strongly to any indication that this may be happening. Father Jillions’ case is a good example. Folks are ready to tar and feather the man based on the fact that one his academic interests when he was employed as a professor was “sexual minorities.” I am not going to go into what makes a good strong indicator, but I will say that it is a very flimsy one, even for a man whose attitude is “the glass is half full.”
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On May 8, 2013 @ 10:59 am
Dear Albert–I have two answers for you.
First, as a general proposition, we have a huge problem in the West with defining deviancy down. On another occasion I said this “Defining down deviancy is a huge problem indeed and goes hand in hand with defining down the human potential of sanctification. Thus, the focus to feeling good, to getting along, to eschew criticism, to become warm, instead of hot, Christians. I believe the Lord had the last say on this. So, the problem with most “liberal” or “enlightened” Christians is the Lord’s promise that He will spit them out. They live in delusion indeed.” So, it is incumbent on the Orthodox Church to continue to maintain that homosexual conduct is a sin, as are a number of other sexual sins, such as adultery, pedophilia, bestiality, polygamy. It is the job of the Church to proclaim the truth and the job of each one of us to accept this truth. Such acceptance does not guarantee that one does not sin, of course. But, I would think that any serious Orthodox would at least have to start from such basic premises. If an Orthodox person continues not to believe such premises, then they have separated themselves from the Body.
The second answer is more nuanced. The example you gave is obviously one from experience and not a figment of your imagination. Thus, anything that I say in relation to what happened at the Paschal procession would be judging real persons; the person carrying the Holy Bible and the person in authority (priest or bishop) who allowed it to happen. Since I am not in a position to judge, my answer to you is to present your case to the person immediately above whoever made this decision. If your case was hypothetical, however, I would agree with you that it was not right. And, I would repeat my argument against defining deviancy down.
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On May 7, 2013 @ 3:41 pm
Dear Professor, Christ is risen!
In the off chance that “Cyrill” above refers to me (for you know that my baptismal name is indeed Kyrill), I must say that I derive a certain guilty pleasure of being alluded to as the Grand Inquisitor for Schismatic Activities and Statements. Besides, I have no doubt whatsoever that all Orthodox Churches, to include the Orthodox Church in America, have a common position on homosexuality, which boils down to “hate the sin but love the sinner.” In addition, I am not bothered by anybody misinterpreting Mr. Stankovich’s sarcastically on point remark. That is, I do acknowledge that some will inevitably misinterpret Mr. Stankovich even if he were an angel sent to us by the Lord Himself. Indeed, there are some here who would disagree and criticise the Lord Himself if He did not agree with their narrow POV and agenda.
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On May 6, 2013 @ 4:53 pm
I will respond next week. In the meantime, please repent before this thing eats your soul. Please.
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On May 2, 2013 @ 10:43 am
A few corrections for the record.
1. Orthodox Christianity.Net is owned by Anastasios Hudson, whose diocesan bishop is Metropolitan Pavlos of the Church of the Genuine Orthodox Christians of America, an autonomous eparchy of the Church of the Genuine Orthodox Christians of Greece. These people can hardly be considered liberal or moderate.
2. Orthodox Christianity.Net is administered by Father George Callos, who is the Chancellor of the Metropolis of Pittsburgh, the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America. I think that Father George is as mainline as one can get. I would classify him properly as a conservative Orthodox Christian priest.
3. I am but one of many moderators on Orthodox Christianity.Net. My section is Free For All-Religious Topics. The moderators include clergy and laity from a variety of Orthodox jurisdictions: GOAA, OCA, AOCA, Ukrainian, Polish, as well as one from the Armenian Church. In addition to those jurisdictions, our Forum members come from ROCOR/ROC, the churches of Romania, Serbia, Bulgaria, Macedonia, Greece, Constantinople, Poland, as well as from Oriental Orthodox Churches, such as the Coptic Church, etc. We do have posters who are atheistic, agnostic, searching, inquiring, helpful, as well as those who have chips on their shoulders and make life difficult for the moderators.
4. The position of the OrthodoxChristianity.Net on the Oriental Orthodox is expressed in two sections of the Rules Page:
“EO/OO/RC Pejoratives — Please do not use the following terms in your discussions as they are considered to be pejorative by other members of this forum: Uniate: please use Eastern Catholic. Monophysite: Please use Oriental Orthodox or Non-Chalcedonian. Obviously, if you are discussing these terms in their true and historical sense then there is no problem using the term. What is being rejected is using this as a label to counter other members of the forum. As always, this does not imply that the board takes a position itself on these positions; this is merely a request to use civilized terminology & academic discussion standards in dialog on this forum.”
“Forum Purpose & Place of the Non-Orthodox
To be clear, this site exists as an Orthodox Forum where people who identify themselves as Orthodox are given a place to discuss things pertinent to the Orthodox Faith. In practicality, this means that there is a broad approach to allowing people from the Eastern Orthodox “Majority”, the Eastern Orthodox “Traditionalists”, and the Oriental Orthodox “Non-Chalcedonians” to post on topics relating to Orthodoxy. It should be emphasized that it is the policy of this site that no one is required to affirm that any of the other groups are canonical or Orthodox, but rather the purpose of the broad approach is to allow broad discussion on topics that in academic discourse are labeled “Orthodox studies.”
People who do not fit this broad, academic definition of Orthodox, such as Roman Catholics, Protestants, non-Christians, and others, are permitted to post here and to offer positive contributions to the site and corrections when their faith traditions are misrepresented. They are not, however, permitted to attempt to bring people to other faiths.”
5. The issue of whether the Oriental Orthodox (OO) are monophysites is one that is in transition. Certainly the OO are non-Chalcedonian, but a Joint Commission of the Theological Dialogue between the Orthodox Church and the Oriental Orthodox Churches has been working on the issues separating our two communions. On our side, this commission has included representatives from Constantinople, Antioch, Alexandria, Russia, Bulgaria, Romania, and Greece, among others. See http://www.coptic.net/articles/OrthodoxUnityDialog.txt
It appears that perhaps a better term is “Miaphysite.” Now, it is equally true that the hyper-conservative Orthodox folks of the Orthodox Christians Information Center are up in arms. See http://orthodoxinfo.com/ecumenism/mono_2.aspx
6. I consider myself to be a conservative in politics as well as religion. Said another way, if I am a moderate as claimed by Ladder, then he must be so far to the right of me that it would be hard for me to place him in any recognizable Orthodox faction.
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On May 2, 2013 @ 10:37 am
What you say is true but his use of the term is completely unrelated to our esteemed host’s libelous accusation. I myself have used, indeed signed, a statement that talked about abortion and same-sex marriage. That does not make me pro abortion or pro same-sex marriage (surely a cause of sexual minorities); indeed, the statement I am referring to is the Manhattan Declaration. I am not saying that Father Jillions’ Birmingham statement expressed opposition to the causes of sexual minorities. However, it did not express any support for sexual minorities/homosexuals whatsoever. Here it is in context:
“Today there are a number of causes and groups competing to inherit the mantle of that movement. Is it still blacks? Or is it Latinos? Immigrants? The poor? Sexual minorities? Women seeking abortions? The unborn? Or should we be looking outside the US to the rest of the world and focusing on relieving suffering and promoting basic human rights in much worse conditions elsewhere? As people of faith should we be especially concerned about the rights of religious minorities around the world?”
Note: Father Jillions went on without mentioning the term again, nor expressing any thoughts that may be supportive of them. The question remains: When will the slanderers of this Orthodox priest apologize for their great sin?
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On April 27, 2013 @ 8:53 am
I just scanned it and thus may not be doing it justice, but the dissertation appears to be largely about theological heresies and ecumenism. I did run a search on “homosexual” and “sexual minorities” and I got 0 (zero) return.
The question remains: the author of this serious accusation against this priest must back it up or apologize.
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On April 26, 2013 @ 3:50 pm
The article you posted is not consistent with the following accusation against Father Jillions. This accusation is not made with any backup or argumentation–it is just a bold assertion that is as serious as one can make against an Orthodox priest. What gives?
“I draw the term “sexual minorities” from Fr. John Jillions, the OCA Chancellor who uses it (promiscuously as it turns out) as a euphemism for the normalization of homosexual activity within the Church without explicitly saying so. The term is irresponsibly broad however and supports all manner of relationships as morally legitimate as the article below explains. Fr. Jillions needs to explain himself and come clean on where he stands and what he teaches.”
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On April 25, 2013 @ 5:33 pm
A small glitch in your theory Father John: the canons of the Holy Apostles were written after the Apostles appointed successors. If you recall, Canon 5 forbade deacons, priests and yes bishops to put away their wives on account of piety. Also, at the time of the Council in Trullo, there were indeed married bishops.
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On April 20, 2013 @ 7:09 pm
Harry–In the context of Council in Trullo, celibate bishop means both “a bishop who was not married at his ordination and will never marry as long as he is a bishop” ” and “married man who ceased co-habitating with wife before his ordination, or whose wife has passed on before his ordination, and who will never remarry as long as he is a bishop.” For example, St Innocent was a married priest whose wife passed on; when he was ordained to the episcopate, he did not cease being married to his departed wife, did he? We do not have the Western idea that a marriage lasts until one partner’s death, do we?
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On April 20, 2013 @ 7:05 pm
Dear Father Patrick–It has been a very long time indeed if you are talking about a married bishop with a living wife who cohabitates with her husband the bishop–that would be the Council in Trullo or 692 AD. (I am discounting the unfortunate experience in Russian with the Renovationist Church). As we know, the Fathers at Trullo decreed that married bishops of that time would have to put away their wives and that in the future candidates would have to do likewise before consecration. No divorce, but still married but henceforth celibate.
If you are talking about married bishops, whose wives have passed on, we have some even today: Archbishop Nikon of Boston comes readily to mind. Of course, we just celebrated St. Innocent.
I do agree with you that because the post-Trullo practice has been even stricter than the relevant ecumenical canons, any change–even back to Trullo–would cause scandal, particularly among those who are uneducated and/or hyper-conservative.
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On April 18, 2013 @ 5:55 pm
Just a question: Why the quotation marks in “Bp. Matthias “Voluntarily” Retires”?
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On April 15, 2013 @ 1:51 pm
One could conceivably read the letter as you have, other folks may not. Again, not to argue but to provide information and context, I direct readers to the Letter:
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On April 11, 2013 @ 12:48 pm
Dear Professor–I do not mean to get into an argument before Pascha, but I do want to pose my question to you so that you might remember to reply to me after Bright Week.
Am I right in perceiving that there is a disconnect between your criticism of folks who are “mean” on line and your approval of Colette’s post, which may be considered “mean” by some folks? I am referring to these words: “the immaturity and ill-will of others here.”
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On April 20, 2013 @ 7:18 pm
Just for the record, here is what Metropolitan Tikhon said after going over unfruitful negotiations before and after the AAC:
“During this time, I was in conversation with members of the Russian Orthodox Church, including correspondence with Patriarch Kirill, and personal discussions with Metropolitan Hilarion (Alfeyev), Archbishop Justinian and Metropolitan Hilarion of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia. I mention this because one of the options under discussion was the possibility of a release of Metropolitan Jonah to another jurisdiction. This was his request at several points of our negotiation, but at this moment there has not been a request for his release from any jurisdiction.”
In analyzing the above passage, i think reasonable folks will draw the following conclusions.
1. It is probable that +Jonah requested to be released.
2. It is probable that +Jonah requested to be released specifically to ROC/ROCOR.
3. The possibility of release of +Jonah to ROC/ROCOR was discussed.
4. A formal request for release from another jurisdiction is necessary for a canonical release to happen.
5. There has been no request for release of +Jonah from ROC/ROCOR.
6. There has been no request for release of +Jonah from any other jurisdiction.
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On April 15, 2013 @ 4:35 pm
Sue–I do not know how you have come to the conclusion that I “maintained that (+Jonah) was on medication.” If you would just reread what I posted on this thread (April 12, 2013 at 10:40 am), you would see that what I maintained was vastly different. Once again, it was Nikos who said that +Jonah was diagnosed with OCD, something that has been acknowledged by Jesse Cone on this thread (with the caveat that Nikos believed it was a misdiagnosis because the clinicians misunderstood the Metropolitan’s use of the Jesus Prayer). I then said that if that is the case, it can be controlled by medications. For the record, I do not know what the diagnosis was. I have no idea if any medicines were prescribed, nor do I know if any were used.
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On April 15, 2013 @ 4:16 pm
His Grace Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) has indeed posted under other names. It is my distinct impression however that he has done so transparently and in order to register his disapproval of those who also post anonymously. I am posting this with the hope that it will be considered informative and not argumentative.
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On April 12, 2013 @ 11:42 am
For the record, here is what I posted back in 2012:
Carl Kraeff says:
February 2, 2012 at 5:18 pm
George–If it is true, as alleged by one who is on your side, that +Jonah was diagnosed with OCD, it was a good thing that he was evaluated, no? Would you rather his OCD is not controlled? I would not wish that on anybody.
Carl Kraeff says:
March 26, 2012 at 3:41 pm
I think you worry too much. Even if the main culprit in the mishandling of clergy sexual misconduct cases was +Jonah, there is no reason to do anything but say “the past is past,” make structural improvements, and to move on. The Metropolitan owned up to his failings, went to a clinic that specializes in clergy with problems and is being treated for what ever ails him. It was one of your team (I forget who) who said that it was OCD, which should be great news for all of us because, as long as he is on his medications, +Jonah will be a fine Metropolitan. I wish he would never again listen to the wrong advisors, like Father Fester for one.
I cannot find the post of Nikos, the existence of which was confirmed by Jesse and I think Helga, when she came to my defense against folks who accused me of making this up.
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On April 12, 2013 @ 10:40 am
Jane Rachel–I also Googled your search term and found out that It is not only an alcoholic that will indulge in the blame game. I do not want to go any further because I am not a behavioral health clinician, just a planner who is familiar with behavioral health. I suggest that we leave diagnoses to qualified individuals.
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On April 12, 2013 @ 8:38 am
Jesse–Yes, I believe it was Nikos. I do not recall his words but I do remember writing that I was happy that it was something that would be controlled by medications. I am not a person who thinks that having health issues, physical or mental, is something that automatically disqualifies folks from doing what they want to do. Obviously, there are some basic caveats here, such as not being allowed to pilot a plane if you have certain vision impairments, etc. That is why I remember being taken aback when folks would not even entertain the possibility that +Jonah had a mental health issue. I agree that a posting by an anonymous poster is not definitive but I also feel that some folks here guilty of socially stigmatizing mental illness, something that is plain wrong and hurtful to millions of folks who suffer from such illness.
To all others–I am sorry that I have stirred up the pot again. I posted this to provide some context to the discussion.
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On April 11, 2013 @ 10:14 am
Back To Stats Page
FYI. We had a poster here (who usually posted as a friend of +Jonah) who told us that this facility had diagnosed +Jonah with a mental health condition that can be controlled by medication. Indeed, +Jonah then continued to function as the Metropolitan until he reigned.
» Posted By Carl Kraeff On April 10, 2013 @ 3:07 pm