Dokos to Face Charges

[Editor’s note: yesterday, Monomakhos published a post the title of which was factually incorrect. We regret that error. In the meantime, we hope that this affair comes to a just and merciful resolution for all concerned, Fr Dokos and his family especially. Perhaps we can hope that the exposure of such financial schemes and the giving of honoraria to bishops to curry favorwill come to an end.]

Source: Chicago Tribune

Glenview priest to be charged with stealing from trust fund

By Alexandra Chachkevitch and Lisa Black

james-dokos-2A Greek Orthodox priest in Glenview will be charged with felony theft amid allegations that he took more than $110,000 from a church trust fund to pay personal expenses including shopping trips, upscale dining and Christmas decorations for his home, according to Wisconsin authorities and a criminal complaint.

The Rev. James Dokos is accused of improperly writing tens of thousands of dollars in checks to himself and to pay a personal credit card bill from a trust fund that he controlled, but which was set up primarily to benefit a Milwaukee church where Dokos was the longtime pastor, according to the complaint. He transferred to Saints Peter and Paul Church in Glenview in 2012.

The Tribune reported in October that documents the newspaper obtained also showed that Dokos, while serving as pastor of Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church in Milwaukee, wrote checks from the trust to several high-ranking Greek Orthodox church leaders, including at least $6,750 sent to Bishop Demetrios of Mokissos, the No.-2 ranking official at the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago, which oversee dozens of churches in several Midwestern states.

Upon learning of the criminal investigation into Dokos’ handling of the fund, members of the lay leadership of the Glenview church sought to have Dokos temporarily removed from their ministry until the probe’s completion. They were rebuked by Metropolis officials, who instead removed the parish council president from his position. Demetrios, who could not be reached for comment Thursday, also sent a letter to the Milwaukee church in August stating that the Metropolis’ own investigation determined that the funds from the trust were spent properly.

Saints Peter and Paul, which was established in the 1960s, has about 1,300 members. Located in an affluent northern suburb, the church has suffered from dwindling financial support since news of the Dokos investigation broke, lay leaders have said.

The priest will be charged with a Class G felony theft for allegedly misappropriating an amount of money exceeding $10,000, said David Feiss, assistant district attorney for Milwaukee County.

The criminal complaint — which authorities said will be formally filed after they schedule a hearing date with Dokos’ attorney — did not address the checks written to church leaders. Most of the priest’s spending in question occurred between 2008 and 2012, after Dokos signed over the bulk of the trust fund — $1.1 million — to Annunciation Church, according to the complaint.

Milwaukee church leaders, however, told investigators that they were not aware that there was money left over, according to the complaint. The trust called for Dokos to receive $5,000, an automobile and property, and for $20,000 to be distributed among several charities. After that, the “rest, remainder and residue of the Trust Assets were to go to the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church to be used exclusively for the construction and maintenance of a Cultural Center,” the criminal complaint states.

Instead, “a great deal of this money was spent on clearly personal expenditures,” the complaint states, detailing checks that Dokos wrote to his daughter and mother and toward his cable bill and medical expenses.

Dokos, 62, who lives in Chicago’s Gold Coast neighborhood, could not be reached Thursday. His lawyer described Dokos as the innocent target of Milwaukee church members upset after his transfer to Glenview.

“It is my view that Father Dokos is the victim of a vigilante action by a number of people at the Annunciation church who are unhappy with the archdiocese and Bishop Demetrios because Father Jim was replaced at the Annunciation Church by a different priest,” said Franklyn Gimbel, based in Milwaukee. “They have been pressuring the district attorney’s office overwhelmingly to bring this case. There is absolutely going to be a battle to the conclusion of this case.”

Gimbel said Dokos has not resigned and that his fate will rest with church leaders.

A Metropolis spokesman issued a statement saying it will continue to work with the district attorney’s office and that “we will continue to monitor developments in this case and administer our parishes in accordance with our Archdiocesan Charter and Regulations.”

The Milwaukee County district attorney’s office began investigating Dokos about a year ago after being contacted by officials at the Milwaukee church where Dokos served as a pastor for about 20 years before coming to Glenview.

Annunciation officials told investigators that they first became concerned in early 2013, when they said they found possible discrepancies with the trust fund, which was left by longtime Annunciation parishioners Ervin and Margaret Franczak.

The criminal complaint quotes an email from Dokos, who wrote in response to the questions raised by church leaders at the time: “I STOLE NO MONEY.”

The parish leaders turned to authorities after Bishop Demetrios told members there was no wrongdoing.

The criminal complaint “is total vindication,” said Emmanuel Mamalakis, an attorney for the Milwaukee church who is also a longtime member.

He said church officials could have handled the matter internally if Metropolis leaders had been more responsive to the concerns of Milwaukee church members over the fund.

“We don’t wish for any other church to go through this,” Mamalakis said.

The controversy surrounding the investigation led to tensions between the Metropolis of Chicago and the Glenview church parishioners.

In fall 2013, Metropolitan Iakovos, the leader of the Metropolis of Chicago, denied the church’s request to place Dokos on temporary leave while the investigation continued. He also removed the church’s parish council president, James Gottreich, who had asked for Dokos to be placed on leave, from his post.

“I’ve said the truth will come out, and it obviously has,” said Gottreich, vice president of the parish council. “It’s sad for our church.”

The 20-member parish council will likely gather for an emergency meeting soon, he said, adding he believes Dokos should be removed or at least be put on a leave of absence.

“It’s been a very troubling time for our parish for many months,” said James Santos, president of the Glenview parish council. “The criminal complaint doesn’t come as a surprise.”

achachkevitch@tribune.com

lblack@tribune.com

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Comments

  1. Bishop Tikhon Fitzgerald says:

    Do you mean "Breaking News?" That was long before yesterday; in fact, it was In March!

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    • old article with more information says:

      http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2013-10-29/news/ct-met-greek-orthodox-church-controversy-20131029_1_trust-fund-milwaukee-church-metropolis

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  2. Constantina Alex says:

    Just to make it clear I'm not against priests, church or God. I'm extremely faithful. I support and admire caring priests that do their job right.!...Pou etrwge tosa lefta kai den itan kan dika tou! Oi papades kanoun PARA POLLA LEFTA! Egw stin Ellada ta exasa otan eida oti se oles tis Ekklisies kathe mera exoun MENU gia na trone oi ftoxi. They would give them to go boxes with Pastichio, moussaka, ntolmades...whatever was the special of the day. This papa was too busy filling his own pockets, he was making over 200,000 year and tax free (trust me, I know, anything that is church related in Illinois is tax free). This chain effect of thefts is definitely going to go down... I remember an incident; I will never forget it; we went to a Greek restaurant in Greek Town, I'm not going to mention the name of the restaurant in order to protect the innocent; the priest was celebrating and he had his whole family and friends (unfortunately I was one of the "kalesmenous"). At the end of dinner, the bill was brought to our table and it was about 1,500$. The priest left the waiter 10.00$ saying he didn't do much, all he did was take the order and bring plates to the table he also accused the poor kid of being too feminine (gay). In addition to that, the priest grabbed the owner/manager and complained about the service and food. The poor owner was so embarrassed because the priest's "fat ass" was not satisfied and gave the table a 50% discount. Quite few of us at the table pulled out money and secretly tipped the waiter apologizing for the priest's ignorant behavior. Some of these priest are greedy mother fuckers that are hiding behind their RASA! They control people by creating guilt and criticizing, gays, lesbians, unwed mothers with children, divorcees, old people that can't use modern technology, people with tattoos and piercings, people that drive bikes, people that smoke cigarettes, people that go out to have fun at night, people that go to bars to have a beer, people that have sex, poor people, old people, young boys/girls. These are the FUCKERS that create stereotypes and create guilt so they can get what they want. I hope he rots in jail and they put him in the same cell as Jeremy Meeks! Let's not confuse that priests represent church and religion, they are not God and they don't make Gods rules. LOSERS! FTOU!

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  3. Mono--not quite sure what your message is. Be clear and factual or be quiet when it comes to legal matters. Was there an arrest or was there the filing of a civil suit? There's a huge difference. If you reported an arrest and there was none, you are exposed to liable and slander. I am an reformer with the gloves off when it comes to church corruption (the norm not the exception), but you can't run around half-cocked. What is it?

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  4. Melanie Jula Sakoda says:

    The Chicago Tribune reported on June 20th that Dokos will be charged.

    http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/suburbs/glenview/chi-glenview-priest-to-be-charged-with-theft-20140619,0,2367623.story

    Melanie Jula Sakoda

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    • George Michalopulos says:

      Thank you for pulling my chestnuts out of the editorial fire.

      To all: last weekend was a doozie for me: a total of 36 hours spread over three days. I didn't get to bed til midnight and then up at 6. Also, my editor was out of town on a mini-vacation. Anyway, the Trib story has now been posted twice.

      I'm sorry for any confusion.

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  5. Fr. George Washburn says:

    Hi friends:

    I thought the Trib article was pretty balanced all in all. If I am reading it correctly, and I think I am, the Wisconsin authorities will be charging him over the self-dealing but *not* over the checks to bishops.

    If that is true, I believe George is doing us and himself a disservice by heading the whole thread with the picture of a bishop who has not even been accused, let alone found guilty, of even one wrong. It is at odds with his expressed hope that the outcome will be "just and merciful" for all. Use of that picture is neither.

    sincerely,

    Fr. George

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    • George Michalopulos says:

      Actually, Fr, it's not only Metropolitan Nikita Lulias who's pictured but Bishop Demetri Kantzavelis (as far as Fr Dokos).

      The reason I'd like to keep the bishops pictured (metaphorically as well as literally) is because they are not peripheral to this financial scheme. I realize that Fr Dokos is probably going to be the only one to take the fall here, but it cannot be forgotten that the greasing of palms is a well-established norm in many of our jurisdictions.

      This must stop.

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      • Fr. George Washburn says:

        Well George:

        What is the difference between the "greasing of palms" that "must stop "(George said so) and the support of chanceries through donations from people or churches with money? No quid pro quo, presumably?

        What new system of fool proof funding for chanceries do you propose to replace monetary gifts from well to do individuals or parishes? What sort of memory altering procedures to go with it so as to make sure that as soon as the check has been cashed the bishop completely and permanently forgets where the money came from?

        inquisitively,

        Fr. George

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        • George Michalopulos says:

          Quick answer: no honoraria or big donations (unless the latter are for specified things like a hospital wing, new parish hall, etc.)

          So how to fund the Church and all its ministries? Answer: tithing.

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          • Fr. George Washburn says:

            More borrowing from the thinking of our secular political arena if you ask me, George. This time the illusion of campaign finance reform and a dream world where little donations mean than the voice of the common man, not big unions or big business, will be loudest.

            If I may, and even if I may not, let's spell out what your answer implies but fails to state clearly: "Although the doctrines of the Orthodox Church state that the bishop has absolute authority over a) safeguarding the doctrinal and sacramental purity of the Deposit of Faith, b) the temporal funds and properties of the Church, and c) the ministries of the local clergy who serve the people, we should put him on a financial short leash so that he can only get money to do his job if the people tithe for it.in amounts less than ___"

            That's the same kind of thinking that produces the Sex Czar system you so roundly criticize, George.

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            • steve knowlton says:

              Only time I've ever agreed with Fr. George, at least with respect to campaign finance "reform."

              The honoraria should be banned. I used to be our parish's treasurer and every time the bishop visited I was asked quietly and outside of any budgetary framework or council decision to cut a check for $500, not sure why the bishop needed an extra $500. No one had any say in it, it was simply a humiliating annual ritual. I finally just put it in the budget for all to see. No priest wanted to head up a parish that gave the bishop nothing, I guess. One of the many dumb habits that are difficult to eradicate.

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          • Pere LaChaise says:

            Tithing is the answer to a lot of problems in church life. But try getting 'cradle Orthodox' to do it – you will face frustration. We are stuck with the people we have in church and their habitual perceptions.
            Do Greek bishops weigh in very heavily in favor of such reforms? But I seriously doubt any clergy can really change minds and habits of parishioners. We need a sea change, not a new rhetoric. God help us!

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        • Gail Sheppard says:

          Lovely day.

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  6. Bishop Tikhon Fitzgerald says:

    George, is that the Metropolitan Nikita(s) that used to live with ever-memorable Fr. George Gladky? I thought he'd be older, or maybe he colors his hair?

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    • G Sheppard says:

      RE: "George, is that the Metropolitan Nikita(s) that used to live with ever-memorable Fr. George Gladky? I thought he’d be older, or maybe he colors his hair?"

      Only his hairdresser knows for sure.

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      • Karen Menounos says:

        Gladky the smooth? There is another OCA winner light in the cassock!

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        • M. Stankovich says:

          Ms. Menounos,

          I can only wonder the difference should you invest the time reading our Father John Climacus, rather than in such ugly gossip:

          Fire and water do not mix, neither can you mix judgment of others with the desire to repent. If a man commits a sin before you at the very moment of his death, pass no judgment, because the judgment of God is hidden from men. It has happened that men have sinned greatly in the open but have done greater good deeds in secret, so that those who would disparage them have been fooled, with smoke instead of sunlight in their eyes. So listen to me, all you accountants of other people's faults, listen well; for if, as is certain, it is true that "you shall be judged with the judgment you have used yourselves" (Matt. 7:2), then whatever sin of body or spirit that we ascribe to our neighbor we will surely fall into ourselves. Those who pass speedy and harsh judgments on the sins of their neighbors fall into this passion because they themselves have so far failed to achieve a complete and unceasing memory of and concern for their own sins. Anyone untrammeled by self-love and able to see his own faults for what they are would worry about no one else in this life. He would feel that his time on earth did not suffice for his own mourning, even if he lived a hundred years, and even if a whole Jordan of tears poured out of his eyes. Mourning of that kind has, as I know, no trace in it of slander or harsh judgment.It is the murdering demons who push us into sin. If they are balked here, they get us to pass judgment on those who are sinning, thereby smearing us with the stain we are denouncing in others.

          You can always recognize people who are malicious and slanderous. They are filled with the spirit of hatred. Gladly and without a qualm they slander the teaching, the doings and the virtues of their neighbor. I have known men who secretly had committed very grave sins and had not been found out, yet cloaked in their supposed goodness they lashed out against people who had done something minor in public.

          To pass judgment on another is to usurp shamelessly a prerogative of God, and to condemn is to ruin one's soul.Self-esteem, even when there are no other attendant vices, can bring a man down. Similarly, if we have got into the habit of passing judgments, we can be destroyed completely by this alone, for the Pharisee was condemned for this very thing. A good grape picker chooses to eat ripe grapes and does not pluck what is unripe. A charitable and sensible mind takes careful note of the virtues it observes in another, while the fool goes looking for faults and defects. It is of such a one that it was said, "They have searched out iniquity and died in the search'' (Ps. 63:7). Do not condemn. Not even if your very eyes are seeing something, for they may be deceived.

          My opinion: take your trash to some other yard.

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          • Karen Menounos says:

            The writings of this Saint are not intended for the likes of me. This is for monks, nuns and spiritual athletes like yourself. I will have to be happy with NATGEO and my ole Sunday Skoul Books.
            Thanks anyway!
            Love,
            Your Best Troll For Ever YBTFE

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          • Bishop Tikhon Fitzgerald says:

            Interesting that 7 out of 11 denizens of Monomakhos give thumbs down to St. john of the Ladder, no? They don't really object to St. John, though, it's just their idea of sticking their tongues out at M. Stankovich when they are struck dumb by something he posts, even advice of the Saints.

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            • Michael Bauman says:

              Denizen:

              1. an inhabitant; resident.

              2. a person who regularly frequents a place; habitué: the denizens of a local bar.

              3. British . an alien admitted to residence and to certain rights of citizenship in a country.

              4. anything adapted to a new place, condition, etc., as an animal or plant not indigenous to a place but successfully naturalized.

              Interesting, I'd always given the word a darker meaning somehow in my mind. But since surely your Grace would not insult people just because of a particular association, I looked it up.

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          • Ladder of Divine Ascent says:

            "I can only wonder the difference should you invest the time reading our Father John Climacus"

            "Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted Me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept My saying, they will keep yours also." (John 15:20)

            http://a.disquscdn.com/uploads/mediaembed/images/1106/5788/original.jpg

            Meanwhile:

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KWHv6xsCpj4&list=UUDATi9UrhqjfVNxIKNizOiQ

            Soundtrack:

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yb5uvF7hwMQ

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            • M. Stankovich says:

              And you recall, as you stood by, doing and saying nothing; only offering anonymous internet castigation of the anointed of God, of those whose calling is greater than that of the angels and the archangels; berating with ignorance and shallowness those whose minds and God-given talents set them apart as fathers and teachers of our generation; and gloating at the Google-enabled "wisdom" of schizotypial childishness. And what has Jonah and your beloved STINKBOMB earned you? Your own empty hotbed. Rest and enjoy.

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              • Anonymous by Necessity says:

                Stankovich came out the barn braying "We are the Legacy! We are the Legacy!" along with John Jillions, Eric Wheeler and Robert Arida on a brand spanking new website he unveiled days after +Jonah was pushed out.

                When the people resisted, Jillions, Wheeler, and Arida ran for cover leaving Stankovich to bray alone.

                This sordid business contributed to the STINKBOMB letter where +Jonah was accused of shielding a rapist. It was debunked in a week but the damage to +Jonah's reputation was done. They never apologized.

                Stankovich has yet to condemn the letter.

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                • M. Stankovich says:

                  I have corrected your purposeful, imbecilic baiting of distorted information individually over a period of several years. Why not we settle settle these points, once and for all, should you post this identical crap again.

                  Stankovich came out the barn braying “We are the Legacy! We are the Legacy!” along with John Jillions, Eric Wheeler and Robert Arida on a brand spanking new website he unveiled days after +Jonah was pushed out.

                  1) As I've corrected you 25 times if I corrected you once, cafone, the title was, "We Are THEIR Legacy," Get it? Madonna mia! If you intend to mock me, at least use the correct title!

                  2) The first post of the "brand spanking new website [was] unveiled" on September 22, 2011. Met. Jonah resigned on Friday, July 6, 2012. Any dumbass who vaguely knows the internet - or is stupid enough to proffer some "conspiracy" correlation between my former website and Jonah's "removal" - would have verified this with the Wayback Machine. Please, take a victory lap, but only wear one sneaker, and run as fast as you can, backwards. Strike One.

                  3) At the time I invited Fr. John Jillions to join my project, he told me that he had applied for the position of Chancellor of the OCA, and that his acceptance of joining my website as a contributor was "tentative" until he was notified of the Holy Synod's decision. When he was selected as Chancellor, he notified me and I removed his name and photo from the site, several weeks before the official announcement of his selection on October 21, 2011. Strike Two.

                  It seems to me, Inspector Clouseau, that you have at least eight months of no one but me, "braying alone," upon which to build your case:

                  This sordid business contributed to the STINKBOMB letter where +Jonah was accused of shielding a rapist. It was debunked in a week but the damage to +Jonah’s reputation was done. They never apologized.

                  Who are "they?" I took your statement, "When the people resisted, Jillions, Wheeler, and Arida ran for cover leaving Stankovich to bray alone," to undermine both my integrity and my trustworthiness among my peers, and I was "abandoned." "Sordid business" and "they" never apologized.

                  This is where this ends. You are anonymous because of rank, pitiful cowardice. This issue was never debunked, because there is only one man walking this earth who knows the truth. Your +Jonah has my number. When he calls me and tells me, before God and man, that he did not shield that man, I will apologize and I will repent. And not until. Then let him answer why he has allowed this divisiveness to continue for so long.

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                  • George Michalopulos says:

                    I'm sorry, Dr S, but you've overstepped your bounds or at least not carefully considered your assertions. I will concentrate my correction on only one assertion at present, towit that of Jonah "shielding a rapist." Jonah as you know did no such thing. Nor was he accused of it in the Stinkbomb. Nor has it been proven that the man was a rapist. One of the ladies who was a supposed victim came forward on this blog and said that the priest did no such thing. Leave that last assertion aside for now.

                    What did the Stinkbomb say? Clearly that Jonah "unilaterally" took into the OCA the priest in question. Not "shielded" him. Regardless, he did not incardinate the priest into the OCA although according to the statutes of the OCA he could have. And yes, unilaterally --which is the prerogative of the Primate.

                    As far as your esteemed friend Fr Jillions is concerned, the question is not the timeline are whether he is part of "their legacy" but his fidelity to the Christian moral tradition. His CV and the ouvre of other priests in the OCA is shall we say "interesting" in this regard.

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                    • M. Stankovich says:

                      Mr. Michalopulos,

                      I have no intention of debating the merits of "veracity" revealed on this site, when I have contended that it would take a decent climbing rope to repel down to the new threshold. I do, however, resent anonymous creeps and jackasses attempting to drag me into their warped fantasies - I never used the word "rape," but rather attribute it to the anonymous-because-he-is-a-moron. I do, however, maintain, that +Jonah needs to answer to the OCA for why he has not ended this divisive chapter, as is his duty, by following the directive of St. Paul to address and resolve conflict directly. It was immature and a reflection of his character.

                      As to your second point regarding Chancellor Jillions and his "his fidelity to the Christian moral tradition," I would suggest to you that this is a disingenuous accusation created for no other reason than to bolster the myth of the "hitman." If we use your silly logic, we must find "interesting" as well the CV and ouvre of Fr. Georges Florovsky, full professor at both Harvard and Princeton Divinity; Fr. John Meyendorff, full professor at the (Jesuit) Fordham University in the Bronx (and instrumental for my studying bioethics); Veselin Kesich, full professor at Columbia Univesity, and so on. Interesting in what regard, Mr. Michalopulos? This is a sad, pointless, and offensive demonstration of internet spite that should have never been raised, considering that, if the books produced by these authors and fathers of our generation are not on your nightstand, Mr. Michalopulos, they should be.

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                    • George Michalopulos says:

                      Ok, now I'm not really following you. You're all over the map on this one. The Stinkbomb made a horrible accusation against HB. It's what was used as an excuse to drag the entire OCA (my church, not your's) through the mud and make us the preeminent laughing-stock of Orthodoxy.

                      Why does Jonah "owe" Syosset anything? Don't they owe us the truth?

                      As for Fr Jillions, I'm just a simple man. If I see a priest talk about "sexual minorities" that sends off alarm bells. You don't have to be a rocket scientist to see where that leads.

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                    • I do, however, maintain, that +Jonah needs to answer to the OCA for why he has not ended this divisive chapter, as is his duty, by following the directive of St. Paul to address and resolve conflict directly. It was immature and a reflection of his character.

                      You have made this accusation before, and it was answered already.

                      You have railed at us many times about how irrelevant and uninteresting we are, that everyone has "moved on". If that were true, you would have left us long ago to stew in our delusions.

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                    • M. Stankovich says:

                      You are irrelevant and uninteresting, for heaven's sake, and you continue to demonstrate it without any assistance from me! Did I interject myself into some otherwise "moment of revelation to the nations?" No. A correspondent from your Anonymous Team Jackass again thought it necessary to drag me onto Fantasy Island. And only in the ikky-thump, la-di-da world of Momomahkos are you just some average white lady with a need for justice. "Mom, is it stew yet?" I believe you need to feed Anonymos Because His Head Rattles Like a Mexican Maracas because he was up all night looking for a quote in Scripture where he could call me a fool without facing eternal damnation. If I am not mistaken, there plenty of good reasons to participate here without ever thinking about you and yours. There's the cumulative wisdom of Misha, for example. So, you can go back to whatever it is you do when not rehashing irrelevance, awaiting the call from Commissioner Gordon, and accept my gratitude for a job well done.

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                    • So, you can go back to whatever it is you do when not rehashing irrelevance

                      If you don't want to take it from me, take it from Mrs. Louise Paffhausen. She posted a direct response to you in February. You ignored her, but had time to post comments after hers.

                      "accept my gratitude for a job well done."

                      You're welcome.

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                  • Bishop Tikhon Fitzgerald says:

                    N.B. Tomorrow is the first of JULY. It was announced here in MARCH and never corrected, that Metropolitan Jonah had been released by the OCA and received by ROCOR.
                    I suppose Metropolitan Jonah didn't want to leave the residence the OCA continues to give him, no? I know that Archbishop Seraphim (Storheim), though retired, still gets his monthly SALARY from the OCA's Canadian Archdiocese----perhaps whatever "pittance' the OCA has been giving Metropolitan Jonah is still better than just the UNKNOWN that might be coughed up by ROCOR for....

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                    • Your Grace, the OCA does not give Metropolitan Jonah any residence. The house he lives in is owned by a non-church entity, and the OCA's stipend is less than the usual monthly rent for a house of its size and location.

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                    • Bishop Tikhon Fitzgerald says:

                      Sounds like a really good deal, no? Talk about "fat-cattin' it!"

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                • Bishop Tikhon Fitzgerald says:

                  "Anonymous by necessity," who are these "people" that resisted, and how did they demonstrate resistance?

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              • "internet castigation of the anointed of God, of those whose calling is greater than that of the angels and the archangels"

                "And what has Jonah and your beloved STINKBOMB earned you?"

                Has it ever occurred to you that Metropolitan Jonah is just as "anointed of God" as His Grace Bishop Tikhon here?

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                • Anonymous by Necessity says:

                  Helga, only they (the Legacy boys) are the anointed. They are judge, jury and executioner. That is why Stankovich writes:

                  When he calls me and tells me, before God and man, that he did not shield that man, I will apologize and I will repent.

                  Proverbs 26:12: See you a man wise in his own conceits? There is more hope of a fool than of him.

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                  • What isn't getting through to Mr. Stankovich is that no one who understands any part of what went on is ever going to shrug it off. It was shameful and wrong anyway you dice it. No one should just drop it. Especially since they can't even bring themselves to finalize his release.

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                    • M. Stankovich says:

                      What isn't getting through to Ms. colette is I don't care. Get Jonah tattoos, walk like Egyptians, develop your own secret language, fabricate bobble-head dolls of Jonah for the dashboards of your cars. I don't care.. But kindly instruct your temple guards to refrain from dragging me into your "special dicing." You are the fifth commentator to bitch about me not "getting it." Here's a thought: don't drag onto your bus, because I don't care. Are we clear, colette?

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                    • colette says:

                      Mr. Stankovich ,

                      It appears you really care.

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  7. J. Maropoulakis Denney says:

    I'm not privy to the dealings from this trust fund, but as a fiduciary, Fr Dokos has a legal responsibility to to carry out the dictates of those who established the fund. Since I have never seen them in print, I would be very curious to know what the actual parameters of the distribution of the fund are. It is unlikely they included permission for self-dealing and such. As for distributions to the others, it depends on the parameters for which the fund was established, and whether the Bishops' use of the monies they received fit those legal parameters. If this fund is an exempt 501(C)3, some of the documents might be available on line, perhaps at the IRS non-profit web site. I am quite tired of this type of questionable activity by Church hierarchs and Priests. A thorough accounting/audit/investigation should be made, preferably by an outside entity. Hopefully, the criminal investigation and process will shed some light on this. BTW, when was the last time anyone saw a published financial statement from the Archdiocese? You know, a simple annual detailed income & expenditures print out, listing salaries, expenses, etc., Please post a link if there is such a thing.

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    • Johnny Barbarakis says:

      Did Father Jim's attorney really say that this whole investigation is the act of a vigilante group upset that Father Jim was replaced? If they are so angry at the bishop(s) why on earth would they pursue a criminal investigation of Father Jim? Maybe then the first thing Father Dokos should do is get a new attorney.

      Or is the attorney hinting that the whole mess is actually an elaborate scheme by the vigilante group to bring down the bishops?

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    • Tom Kanelos says:

      Actually the audited financial statements through 2012 are on the Archdiocese website. It is my understanding that 2013 will be completed sometime later this year.

      http://www.goarch.org/archdiocese/departments/finance/statements

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      • J. Maropoulakis Denney says:

        Thank you, it's great. Do you know if there is a separate break-out for salaries and for the Saint Nicholas ground zero rebuilding fund contributions? I couldn't find these.

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        • Tom Kanelos says:

          I don't know, but if you will be at the Clergy Laity Congress in Philadelphia Starting July 6 that would be a good place to ask. Otherwise ask your parish delegates or priest to ask. I believe the Finance Committee meets on Monday July 7. The schedule is online.

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          • timothy says:

            This is the problem with the GOA: lack of transparency. Tom K refers us to the conference or our parish priest, while lots of money is being diverted to and raised for the Twin Towers church site. Why shouldn't that be on the website for all to see? I have seen requests for monies all the time.

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  8. johnkal says:

    An overview of the postings dedicated to church issues, strongly suggests that Orthodoxy is in dire need of inspired, prophetic leadership. No longer can we continue doing things the same old way and think they are going to work better as some traditionalists would have us believe. In no way am I suggesting that Orthodoxy should change its fundamental apostolic teachings but rather we should evaluate our presentation. The best case in point is the the GOA in America. The GOA is in a moribund state and few are willing to accept that fact. Just look at the statistical facts.

    I strongly believe the first step that needs to be taken is the restoration of married bishops. Jesus surely did not use celibacy as the acid test for choosing his disciples, followers and leaders. Not only were most of the apostles married, but there is a strong historical precedent from the early church supporting married bishops. Many of the bishops in the first 2-3 centuries were married. Look at St Paul's qualifications for bishops in the epistles to Timothy and Titus, the first being "the husband of one wife". Do I believe this will solve the church's problems, no.
    However, I believe that drawing candidates for the episcopacy from a broader pool opens the door for the prophetic and inspired leadership needed. Also, it will help root out some of the celibates who are celibate for the wrong reasons. I refer to those celibates who are uncomfortable around women and unsure of their own sexual proclivities.

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    • Johann Sebastian says:

      Inspired, prophetic leadership will only develop from an inspired laity. Effective catechesis and evangelism is the answer. Greek festivals and balalaika concerts do nothing to enrich the spiritual life of the faithful and do little to reach out to the surrounding community.

      Steep the laity in the Faith. Engage the unbelievers with practical tools that will make them want to investigate further.

      Episcopal celibacy is irrelevant.

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      • The author of proverbs says, "my people perish because of lack of vision". I agree that we need inspired laity but the general direction of the church is guided and determined by the hierarchy. It is the hierarchs who determine the vision of the church.Only they can place catechesis and evangelism in the forefront of parish ministry. They discourage the church from being in the restaurant/concert business and eventually the sheep will follow. Better hierarchy will lead to inspired laity and inspired laity will lead to better hierarchy. Episcopal celibacy is an issue but should not be so. Remember celibacy was not an issue for Jesus.

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