First Monomakhos. Arida claims copyright over his Wonder Blog essay. No problem there. But after republishing his essay here, Arida went after our web host who shut us down for about 25 minutes until the offending essay was removed.
Strange. The essay was fine for a ‘youth blog’ but not okay for adults. It means, I think, that even though Syosset was able to return to its secularist/humanist mindset with the removal of Metropolitan Jonah, they’ve lost control of the narrative. The temporary taking down of this blog by Arida shows desperation, not confidence.
Getting back to his original essay, Arida wrote “All history is destined for the future” which in fact is revolutionary Marxist-Hegelian idea. Orthodoxy doesn’t see history in service to revolutionary ideas — and the moral sanctioning of sodomy is a revolutionary idea.
This explains why any discussion with Arida about the language of the moral tradition will be impossible until his presuppositions about how the tradition functions in the Church are first examined.
In the meantime, the essay is still posted on Arida’s Holy Trinity site so you might want to download and save a copy before he tries to scrub history altogether.
Arrogance dulls perception and we know the Arida-Syosset crew is arrogant. But how arrogant are they? Arida’s new essay “How to Expand the Mission” posted on the Holy Trinity site was written to ready the OCA for the All-American Council. But how should the OCA be readied? Has Syosset learned anything?
Consider these two paragraphs (considered fair use) where Arida writes that the Church must…
…expand its mind and heart. The task is formidable for it demands a reassessment of how to speak and act in a culture that, while infused with religious pluralism, continues to turn a critical eye towards Christianity. By no means is the Orthodox Church in America spared this public scrutiny. In spite of our small numbers, our Church has assumed a noticeable posture in the public square that varies little from that of Christian fundamentalists.
And then this:
If the Church is to “expand its mission” it can no longer turn away from, ignore or condemn questions and issues that are a priori presumed to contradict or challenge its living tradition. Among the most controversial of these issues are those related to human sexuality, the configuration of the family, the beginning and ending of human life, and care for the environment. If the Church is to “expand its mission” then, in and through the Holy Spirit, it must be able to expand the understanding of itself and of the world it lives in.
Sound familiar? Arida and his enablers are the visionaries. Those who maintain the moral tradition are knuckle dragging troglodytes.
Critics of Monomakhos shout from the roof tops that Arida did not say the things we claim he says. In a sense they are right. ‘Studied ambiguity’ is Arida’s stock in trade and it allows Arida and his enablers to deny the obvious trajectory of their ideas.
No wonder they hated +Jonah. He called them on it early. Now we understand why they needed to destroy his reputation with the Stinkbomb letter.
Arida needs to be called out by the Bishops to explain what he really means by “human sexuality, the configuration of the family, the beginning and ending of human life.” Be specific Father about how you want to change the moral tradition.
In the meantime look to his behavior as rector of Holy Trinity Cathedral until he comes clean. What he does is the template for what he means.
Arida and Syosset tried to sneak their secularist fueled ideas about sodomy through the back door on the Wonder Blog. They were shouted down. Now they want to use the All American Council for another try.
Bishops, where are you? It’s becoming ever more evident that Arida and his enablers in Syosset (and elsewhere) are prepping the battle-space for the upcoming All-American Council next year. If they succeed in doing so — even if they don’t win decisively — they will still have won, especially if these teachings get a thorough sounding and no censure.
At that point, the OCA will be in schism for all practical purposes. Why? Because liberal priests like Arida will continue what they do while traditionalists are put in the untenable position of communing with those who flout the plain teaching of the Church.
I imagine that this latest kerfuffle is the last thing the OCA needs right in the middle of the Syosset delegations “pilgrimage” to Russia. (Sources tell me it’s more a trip to the woodshed than a meeting of two co-equal primates.) Be that as it may, the only way to avoid this unpleasant scenario from being played out is to censure Arida — immediately and decisively.
Taking down his essay from the OCA Wonder blog site is not enough. Neither was Metropolitan Tikhon’s tepid rebuttal satisfactory (which was authored by Fr. John Jillions). Otherwise we are left with more confirmation that ever since the unjust removal of +Jonah, the OCA is incapable of doing anything resolute.
Doing nothing solves no problems. It only makes them worse.