Damage Control at Team Stokoe

In an earlier post I baited Mark Stokoe to see what he had that could possibly be so “damaging” to +Jonah. He took the bait and he (or one of his minions) hacked into Fr Joseph Fester’s computer somehow in order to come up with something. This is a serious charge. Many correspondents said that this is a criminal action. Commentators on OCAN pointed out the same thing. Stokoe bit and is now caught in a trap. What follows is damage control:*


Those look like e-mails sent between two people, not e-mails sent to multiple persons. Clearly neither person would have forwarded those e-mails to anyone else. So those are not leaked e-mails but stolen e-mails. How sad that its come to this.


(Editor’s note: I appreciate and share your outrage. However, your outrage is misplaced in this instance. These emails were indeed “leaked” to me, not stolen from the senders. I know this for a fact from my source, for I would not deal in stolen goods, and made that clear. What profit is there to gain the world, but lose your soul? No, the answer is very simple, and involves no hacking, stealing, or otherwise nefarious acquisition. It is up to my source to reveal the how-it-came-to-be to others, should he/she decide that is necessary. Until then I will not say more on the topic without their permission. You may choose not to believe me. Your choice. But when the truth is revealed – and I have no doubt that one day it will be please know I accept your apology for the aspersion. I realize it must be hard to accept. )
#2 takealeak on 2011-04-30 10:18 (Reply)”

(Emphasis added.)

Stokoe provides an interesting interpretation of how he received the e-mails. He obviously knows that it would be illegal for him (or anyone) to “deal in stolen goods.” He categorically denies doing anything illegal at all — whether the act was perpetrated by him or by a third party. He is quite emphatic about it.

This is typical Mark: high-minded, moralistic, a trainload of self-assured sanctimony. It is also complete BS.

Take a look at the screen shots below. They were taken from Fr. Fester’s computer. They show forwarded emails from Fr. Fester’s gmail account (not the same thing as Fr. Fester’s computer) forwarded to Mark Stokoe. Note the gmail account, recipient, and the date the email was sent.

Click to enlarge.

Now look at this one. Again, note the gmail account, recipient, and the date the email was sent.

Click to enlarge.

I have a bone to pick with Fr Fester, however. Why wasn’t I included on his buddy list?

P.S. I will be accepting apologies from all of Stokoe’s groupies –at least any of them who have any integrity left–at this point.

*Due to grammatical and syntactical ambiguities which I made last nite because of sleepiness, I have updated the first paragraph. The P.S. I threw in because I felt especially snarky.


  1. Gmail keeps a log of the IPs that log into my account. At the bottom of the screen, there’s a thing that says, “Last account activity: 2 hours ago on this computer” and a link for more details. Mine go back to April 29th. Fr. Fester should have access to the IP address of whomever logged into his account.

    • My Gmail has the access information going back for three weeks by date and time. If his account was hacked across state lines, the FBI should be able to access the owner of the IP.

      • Further, M. Stokoe says he got the emails on the Wednesday before, not on the Friday that Fr. Fester says his account was hacked. Let’s take everything said by both M Stoke and Fr. Fester as true – it actually happened just the way they said it did.

        The only way Stokoe could have gotten them before Friday was that someone had the power (password) to log on to Fr. Fester’s email account. Where was Fr. Joseph employed before he moved to DC? What computer did he use at that location? We all assume that Gmail is very secure (and it is); and Stokoe says that the way he came to receive the emails was very simple.

        I can’t think of anything more simple than someone walking up to Fr. Fester’s former computer, clicking on gmail, and noticing that he/she was automatically logged into his account and there were the emails. If that computer was in an OCA office somewhere, and Fr. Fester used that gmail as his business account while working for the OCA, then +Mel as chancellor or Fr. Alexander as his employee would have the legal right to the emails.

        Follow the “money”. Who does this act of sabotage benefit? Follow the timing. Why now? You have to give Stokoe one thing – he has good timing and good conncections – or else he is the luckiest guy on earth the way he continually seems to come up with inside information that only the most senior bishop would know.

        • Lola J. Lee Beno says

          Fr. Joseph was employed as the dean at St. Seraphim Cathedral in Dallas before he came here. In other words, he was NOT working in an OCA office.

        • Mark from the DOS says

          The possibility of a login froma computer the DOS chancery was posted here yesterday. It is still illegal.

          Stokoe’s latest post includes a gmail “chat” between Bishop Mark and Fr. Joseph. This is outrageous. Either Bishop Mark sent it, or someone lifted it directly from Fr. Joseph’s computer. Given where all these other e-mails came from, I have to believe that Fr. Joseph’s e-mail was accessed without his permission and items forwarded to Stokoe.

        • The last time Fr. Fester worked in an OCA office would have had to be at least three years ago. That would be far too long for login information to last. If the leaker/hacker wanted to argue he had a work-related purpose for going through the emails, he’d have a tough time arguing that after it’s been this long, and especially since his only apparent use for the information was forwarding them to be published by a blogger.

        • Mark from the DOS says

          Quoting from above:

          If that computer was in an OCA office somewhere, and Fr. Fester used that gmail as his business account while working for the OCA, then +Mel as chancellor or Fr. Alexander as his employee would have the legal right to the emails.

          That is not quite correct. The business would have the right to information stored on the computer (which could include the stored password). This is why most businesses use an Outlook typre program or maintain their own e-mail server accounts. However, unless the OCA/DOS created the e-mail account in its name, it would not have the right to USE the stored password to access e-mail’s contained on a server owned by Google, unless they also had Fr. Joseph’s permission.

        • Harry Coin says

          If you’re a history buff or just old enough to have lived through it: reading all these posts recalls how the staff members of U.S. President Richard Nixon were obsessed with finding the one leaking private accounts of their collective misdoing. Not making amends and owning their stuff.

          What is the primary virtue: loyalty or truth?

          With truth first the concepts ‘mercy’ and ‘justice’ have their own meaning and can be called rightly ‘virtues’ in themselves.

          With loyalty first, all concepts are subordinate, as is the word ‘is’.

          The Christian Gospel is quite clear about which to prefer.

          • George Michalopulos says

            how about loyalty to the Truth? One thing’s clear: Stokoe is not truthful so you can stop being loyal to him.

        • Dizzi-n-Dallas says

          Just FYI…

          Fr. Joseph Fester officed out of the DOS Chancellery. The computer that Fr. Joseph used (in addition to his laptop) while in Dallas is still there and currently being used by Fr. David Moretti under the direction of Bp Mark Maymon.

          Now everyone at SSOC knows that good-o-mark doesn’t have much of a like for Fr. Joseph. So, I’m not saying anything about the smell…but you must admit it’s a bit fishy!

          Dizzi-n-Dallas (My friends call me Dizzi)

    • Geo Michalopulos says

      Helga, all, I forgot to mention one important point that shows the weakness of Stokoe’s case. In his reply, he states “…I would not deal in stolen goods…” Well, that’s a matter of opinion. If nothing else, it violates the well-known legal maxim that a man cannot be a judge in his own case.

      Many criminals when caught deny that they committed any crime. And in their mind, they’ve come up with neat justifications for what they did, or they were simply ignorant that what they did was illegal.

      Regardless, why should we believe MS when he states that he would “never” do anything illegal? Can’t you or I (or Joseph Fester) say the same thing? It’s all matter of opinion, isn’t it?

  2. Although they were never meant to be read by me or anyone else, good is coming of it… I am just now reading the latest stolen emails posted on ocanews. Finally, some news on Bishop Nikolai’s health. I am so glad that his cancer is in remission. Glory to God for All Things!

    • Still reading… and in between the lines, honestly, that Stokoe is such a spin monger.

  3. Who had the “cancer in his mouth” that +Nikolai refers to? Was that Metropolitan Jonah?

    Stokoe refers to “Robert Kondratick, who although he has been defrocked for more than 3 years, continues to serve a parish in the Diocese of the South”. That gives the false impression that Kondratick actually serves divine services there, which as far as I know he does not, being a defrocked priest and all. He “serves” there in the sense that he works there, but Stokoe’s wording gives a deliberate false impression. That’s more spin cycle from the spin doctor.

  4. Seraphimista says

    Whether or not you agree with Fr. Fester and Rod Dreher, or approve of the language in this private e-mail exchange (it makes me cringe I have to say), it’s obvious that this was an exchange between those two men alone, and that Stokoe got this and other e-mails, eg from Morbey, because someone accessed Fester’s gmail account and forwarded them to Stokoe. There was no middleman, as Stokoe claims, who could have leaked these and claimed in a believable way that he was copied on them. THAT IS A LIE. You don’t have to like Fester & Dreher or approve of their methods to recognize in plain sight that Mark Stokoe is party to a crime, and that he is LYING to his readers about how he got these stolen e-mails.

    I hope Fr. Fester is talking to the FBI about this. I hear that he is. I hope he goes after Stokoe with everything he’s got, and knowing his reputation, he will. The bishops better realize that they have thrown in with a man who is so determined to destroy his enemies that he will use stolen e-mails to succeed in that mission, and then lie about it. If they keep Stokoe around, they will deserve it when he steals their e-mails and uses information from them to bring them down.

    WAKE UP GENTLEMEN, YOU HAVE A PIRATE SETTING THE AGENDA OF THE OCA! I don’t care if you don’t like His Beatitude, you better realize what kind of man you are dealing with in Stokoe. What more proof do you need? OK so you hate Fester, and are happy to see him exposed. What do you do when Stokoe puts you in his crosshairs, and uses your own stolen emails to destroy you in public? You cant say you were not warned.

    I would lie like Stokoe too if I knew I was guilty of receiving and making use of stolen merchandise. Are there any lawyers who read this blog who know if Stokoe is at risk of criminal charges here? If everybody who published information got illegally could go to jail, the New York Times publisher would be in jail now for publishing the Wikileaks documents. Those were goverment documents, though, not private e-mails. I just dont know how this all works legally. I would not want to be in Stokoe’s shoes though. If he had just said that he knows who the OCAtruth bloggers are and that Fr. Fester was helping them, he would have served his purposes and probably been on the safe side of the law. Publishing the contents of those e-mails I think crossed a legal line.

  5. Lola J. Lee Beno says
    • Mark from the DOS says

      There is a federal law covering this – even if Fr. Fester left his password stored on a computer somewhere, unauthorized access is still not legal! Many states also have similar laws. Worried yet, Stokoe?

      The Stored Communications Act (“SCA”) subjects to criminal liability any person who intentionally accesses without authorization a facility through which an electronic communication service is provided [and] thereby obtains, alters, or prevents authorized access to a wire or electronic communication while it is in electronic storage in such system.

      18 U.S.C. 2701, et seq. The statute defines an “electronic communication service” as “any service which provides to users thereof the ability to send or receive wire or electronic communications.” 18 U.S.C. § 2510(15) (incorporated by reference in 18 U.S.C. § 2711(1) of the SCA). “Electronic storage” is defined as “any temporary, intermediate storage of a wire or electronic communication incidental to the electronic transmission thereof; and [] any storage of such communication by an electronic communication service for purposes of backup protection of such communication.” 18 U.S.C. §§ 2510(17)(A), (B). The SCA provides that a civil action may be brought “by any provider of electronic communication service, subscriber, or other person aggrieved by a violation … in which the conduct constituting the violation is engaged in with a knowing or intentional state of mind.” 18 U.S.C. § 2707.

  6. Ivan Vasiliev says

    Khristos Voskrese!

    Perhaps OCA News’ biggest coup will be shutting down OCA Truth because Mr. Dreher will no longer publish there? I sent a comment to OCA News with a wish for a “plague on both your houses” (Mercutio’s speech in Romeo and Juliet). I would re-iterate that here, especially if OCA Truth shuts down because of OCA News’ “exposure”. The fact is that this kind of fight is in a whole different league than the well mannered (but equally nasty) battles fought in western denominations. We Byzantines (and especially we Russians) don’t like unnecessary pretenses (necessary ones are another story). One only talks nice to an enemy when 1) one is losing and is hoping to cut the losses, or, 2) when duplicity/diplomacy is in order. Stockoe is playing by the rule book in our ancient tradition (NOT to be confused, God forbid !, with Holy Tradition).

    I’m quite convinced that this is the death knell for the OCA. The “ethnics” (Romanians, Albanians, Bulgarians(?) will probably go to their “home” jurisdictions–the Romanians have already voted to do so (a couple of years ago) in their Diocesan Assembly), the DOS, if it is wise, will run to the MP before it is murdered (it is the only really growing part of the OCA) and the rest will either form a rump OCA not recognized by anyone, or latch onto who knows what. Plan B is that both the monstrosities in this civil war will continue to fight within the OCA until all the above is accomplished–except that whatever healthy growth we now have is killed (i.e. DOS–turned into the lunarscape of so much of the rest of this poor carcass).

    The OCA is NOT the Church “in esse”; it can die and Orthodoxy will remain. But if it can either die to rise again (and I still think that the MP is the best route for this to happen–but I am willing to admit a certain naivete here, after all I believed in the OCA until this crisis finally cured me), or it can just die. I think we shall know rather sooner than later.

    • George Michalopulos says

      Ivan, regarding the entire Dreher/OCAT thing, I wouldn’t worry too much about it. The truth can come out under whatever guise whatsoever, I think the guys at OCAT proved that. What’s interesting is that now MSNBC has been reduced to skullduggery to expose –what? That some people like +Jonah? Is that a crime?

      What IS a crime is hacking into somebody’s computer. The fact that MSNBC has now been reduced to doing that is the story now, not whether Fester communicated via e-mail to a bishop who had cancer.

      I’m more interested in exploring your final point. I don’t think that the ECUSA wing of the OCA really thought this through. Maybe this will in fact be the death knell of the OCA in which its ethnic eparchies go back to Mama overseas and the traditionalist wing merges with the MP and ROCOR. I would be all in favor of that BTW. (As I’ve said dozens of times: “let the liberals go!”)

      From what I understand, the ROC will continue to recognize +Jonah and those bishops who have not acted uncanonically as the OCA. At that point, they would allow their two eparchies in North America to finally join the OCA, because if nothing else, there would no longer be a Lavender problem. As for the Eastern Rite Episcopalians gathered around BB/Mel? Who cares?

      • Dixie Dixit says

        Amen to that, George! Let us create a truly ORTHODOX Church of America! As painful as this is, maybe some real good can come out of it.

      • As for the Eastern Rite Episcopalians gathered around BB/Mel? Who cares?

        You may want to start caring, George. My fear is that the traditionalist part of the OCA will go MP, but the Bp. Benjamin/Melchisedek part will go EP.

        • Ian James says

          I wouldn’t about this too much either, Helga. Being lavender is virtually a job requirement for bishop these days in the GOA (they are all appointed by the EP). Some of them will feel right at home. (I don’t know if Bp Ben and Mel prefer the lavender life-style and I am not implying that they do.)

          Lavender leadership always implodes one way or another (it’s in the pathology; Stokoe will too). I’m not saying this is a good thing because lavenders can do great damage (witness the Romans and Episcopalians) and people will get hurt. I’m saying that just as nature decrees that lavender relationships are sterile making propagation impossible, so it works with the institutions they take over. In the end the institution devours itself. That’s one reason why moral corruption is so dangerous.

          • Lavender, if unchecked or better even eradicated, will kill the OCA. If, after this all has played out, there is only a whiff off lavender left in the OCA, people will walk.
            My friends and I refuse to be obedient to bishops and priests who live in sin and follow a secular agenda…

        • George Michalopulos says

          Assuming that’s correct, then we can surmise that MSNBC was never all that big on the vaunted autocephaly of the OCA. Imagine the crap on the faces of all his groupies if this is how it plays out.

          Having said that, if the EP wants more Lavenders in his ranks, he can have them. This battle we’re fighting in the OCA at present is going to be fought in the GOA in the near future. Personally, I don’t think that +Bartholomew will take them. We’ve had our disagreements over policy, but one thing primates don’t like is bishops who gang up on primates. BB and BM massively screwed the pooch on this one.

          • Hey, Finland is an autonomous church under the EP, and you know what’s going on there. And the EP may not mind what BB and BM did to their primate since they did it to somebody he really doesn’t like.

            If it’s true that the MP threatened the other bishops with no longer being recognized, do you really think they would be content to go vagante? I doubt it. They have surely come up with a contingency plan and my best guess would be that they at least hope to involve the EP. Remember Bishop Melchisedek’s attempt at getting an audience with Archbishop Demetrios? Remember someone telling Romfea, a Greek website, that Metropolitan Jonah had resigned?

      • “Eastern Rite Episcopalians”
        Very good, George.

    • Volodya says

      Yes, Ivan, I agree with you. I do not see how the OCA survives this. It is so disgusting what has happened. With God anything is possible, but how do you put something like this back together again? I can’t be part of a jurisdiction controlled by such people as this. No there is no perfect church, but there is no longer any basis for trust in the OCA. The dream of Schmemann and his generation is dying in Chicago as we speak. When I see what Stokoe has done (using stolen e-mails to destroy Jonah), I think of that saying about war, “They destroyed the village in order to save it.”

      I can see the DOS going to Moscow, somehow. What about those of us who live in other dioceses? What will become of us?

      The God of history is judging the OCA. If anybody thought the Americans were capable of running their affairs, they have been proved wrong. What a tragic day.

      • Ivan Vasiliev says

        I wonder whether, “they destroyed the village in order to save it”, isn’t actually better than “they made a desert and called it peace” (Tacitus). Better the village be destroyed, if it is so full of sickness than to make peace out of a demon infested desert!

        I firmly believe that the Orthodox Church will survive on this continent and that something good will emerge out of this horrific little civil war, though not without even greater suffering. If I put my naive hopes in the MP, it is only because it really is our Mother Church and it has produced saints not only in Russia (by the thousands under the god-haters in the last century) but also here. It is also big enough not to need us. The same cannot be said for the EP–whose very existence, for what it is worth, depends on its cash cow on this continent. By not needing us, it can actually see us for who we are and show the compassion and guidance we need to get well again. I think an autonomy which will (hopefully) lead back to an autocephaly that is more carefully put together than the one created under the Soviets is the way to go at this point.

        What I don’t think can happen is a return to the status quo ante. While the bulk of our membership may not really know what is going on, that is bound to change soon. I’m hoping and praying that the MP has been preparing for that event. I would be astonished if it isn’t.

        • Volodya says

          You speak truth, brother. +Hilarion is no dummy. While I know, and you probably know too, that the Moscow Patriarchate has many problems of its own, moral confusion over homosexuality is not one of them. This is the main issue dividing churches in the West today. We would do very well to have strong leadership from Moscow on this front.

          Chicago may end up being the OCA’s wheat and the tares moment. Each side will look like tares to the other, but the point is that the time of harvest of 40 years of the OCA is at hand.

      • Harry Coin says

        The OCA ‘survives this’ simply by noticing the bishops and their squabbles are a fraction of the whole. That, and parish life quite plainly is the best thing we have — and that predominates what it is that goes on!

        The obsessive focus on the leaders and their squabbles as ‘all’ and ‘the reason for schisms’ serves only overseas interests and is the enemy of growth here.

        The notion that those here ‘seeming to support Met. Jonah’ have.. that the ‘lavender’ problems (specifically ongoing living not reflecting the preaching) will go away if ‘their man’ carries the day is not in evidence, it is a wish only.

        For crying out loud look at the histories of those ‘allied’ via Fr. Fester and so forth ‘For +Jonah’. You think these who served ‘team lavender’ as it were for years are suddenly not going to put up with it? Really? What? Hello?

        Which appear to care for those in the parishes first? Their futures? What’s best for growth? Look in all those ‘leaked’ documents– not a trace of what ‘shepherds’ are supposed to care about first for there, not even in one.

        And, look here at what all the anonymous and more honest supporters are urged to focus upon– was it a leak or were they stolen? Sure, and Mrs. Lincoln really enjoyed the first part of the play. Focus people.

        • Oh Harry,

          I bet if you ask Stokoe for all of Fester’s emails you might find that the strategy sessions and pep talks were only a small part of a pastor’s day. Unless you think that is all a priest does all day. Do you want us to conclude as to who you are just by what you write here and on various other forums?

          Now go back to your Greek parish and grow it.

        • George Michalopulos says

          Harry, a wish is better than the present reality, which is to keep the Lavender Mafia well-entrenched. Then your wish that we will someday stop having “ordained young/never married” men as bishops will be even more delusionanal.

          The present rear-guard action being waged against +Jonah –if successful–will prevent him (or his sucessor) from ever clearing out the Augean Stables.

      • Ian James says

        The OCA can survive this with decisive leadership. You remove the morally compromised, the addicts, the lavenders, the people with checkered histories and appoint men who have a stable track record. They don’t have to be geniuses or saints, but they have to be past the adolescent conflicts that drives the addictions, same-sex attractions, and other impediments that delay and/or deny mature manhood.

        Moscow can help if necessary. They aren’t bound to Western ideas of political correctness that hampers the Western Churches, including the Orthodox Church especially concerning addictions and homosexuality.

        • Harry Coin says


          So long as we understand ‘team lavender’ as specifically those in ongoing living in ways quite contrary to the preaching and not ‘license to witch hunt’, then I agree.

          Sadly in Russia we see the life expectancy still less than in other parts of the world, much to do with widespread disease later in life related to lifelong tobacco smoking. What that does, however, is give some credence to the idea there is less toleration of ongoing mis-living in high places because there are many more widower clergy serving as decision makers, and also those never married who have actually spent a decade or better in a monastery that is not, ah, shall we call them ‘unhealthy’ places.

          However do not doubt that demography is destiny– unless rules to do with senior empty nester clergy being allowed to be also bishops along with the proven never married– once life expectancy improves in Russia, which it will we all hope do in a few short decades, their problems will be the same as elsewhere unless they act to forestall them first.

          That’s why you see in Episcopal and Latin places fewer problems in countries with shorter lifespans. That’s how the church operated for its entire life — with working age widowers well represented in the clergy population as well as the more proven actually monastic-lived-there more than a couple years (or weeks) monastics.

          (Often overlooked in ‘lavender’ discussion, and what should be first in my view, is compassion. The fact #1 on my list is living in that way leads generally to a shorter life and often with a great deal of stress of all sorts, not least for those who care as for the person her/himself. While not living in that way for some can be quite hard, the alternative makes the effort worth it I think.

          In the same way a person doesn’t pick his family and they don’t pick you.. making the best of the situation that is– that’s the way to go. If you have to cross a desert, take an umbrella, suntan lotion, an ice chest… maybe a air conditioned buggy.. some friends who care (who are not enablers of shorter life) and make it all work. Nobody who wants to try to do better is ‘out’ in my book.

          • George Michalopulos says

            Harry, I was wondering when you were going to start your tired cliches about single men in the episcopate. Do you see the illogic of your argument, that you always decry these “celibate” men because of the damage they do but your kow-towing before Stokoe who’s various narratives have done REAL harm to the Church.

            It’s personal with me now Harry. Stokoe sold us a bill of goods with +Mark. We fell for his narrative hook, line, and sinker. You think I’m being excessive when I say “real damage.” OK, let’s put pen to paper: Last Friday, the Feast of the Life-Giving Fountain, NO ONE showed up to Church at St Seraphim’s for Liturgy. REPEAT: NOT ONE SINGLE SOLITARY SOUL. Only the Priest. The very next day, a grand total of THREE people showed up for Liturgy. On Sunday (that’s yesterday), attendance was down 20 percent.

            Now, maybe you’ve never been to Dallas, but I have. It’s the Cathedral of our Diocese. It takes a real genius to run a church into the ground in less than three months. Thank you Mark Stokoe. Harry, please tell me NOW how you feel about your idol, the guy who always got his facts straight.

            (Please forgive my rant but I’m so pissed I can’t see straight right now.)

            • That is quite a tragedy for the Cathedral in Dallas. But wasn’t +Mark sent there by Metropolitan Jonah? Why isn’t +Jonah speaking on behalf of the people and doing something to help and restore unity and peace? Hopefully that community can receive some support and guidance from him and the entire Synod.

              • George Michalopulos says

                Chris, we can’t have it both ways. Why wasn’t +Jonah doing anything? Maybe because when he tonsured a dying nun the Stokovites called him a “Defiant Bastard.” Sorry for the rant, I meant nothing personal against you, but maybe we all picked up +Mark (the Holy Synod, the OCA, everybody) because we thought he was a stand-up guy. But now we know that it was +Mark who was the primary source of information to Stokoe during his tussle with +Philip. We were ALL played for fools.

                Please forgive my intemperate tone.

                • Harry Coin says

                  ‘Met. Jonah can do no wrong, and if he does, see rule #1 and blame the guy we don’t like for it’.

                  Overlooked so soon in the AOA that diocesan bishops *presto* were made, the lot of them, into hirelings to be sent wherever and whatnot. Who can credibly buy into that happening all because of a disagreement with one bishop and not because of larger she-nan-i-gans? So focused on ‘the guy we don’t like’– everything we don’t like must be his fault. It doesn’t stand the ‘reality check’.

                  Drawing a map, the problems seem to center around the locations recently vacated by Fr. Fester, leaving whoever shows up next to encounter a mess and take the heat.

                  A hopeful Rod Dreher is received into the church and makes friends, with the hopes and earnestness of a convert, and, basically, got played.

                  Get this, if you get nothing else, and be really clear about it: Fr. Fester knew from day 1, day 1 of OCA Truth that it was a matter of when, not if, the whole anonymous thing was going to blow up. Anyone watching this Byzantine world with a pink Slavic twist for more than five years knew that.

                  Can a mess in D.C. be far behind?

                  If the bishops focus on what’s good for the people in the parishes, and put their squabbles into that perspective, their plan will be well received by most.

                  The schism mongers, many here whether knowingly or not, serve overseas interests and not local growth.

                  • George Michalopulos says

                    Harry, there’s only one thing wrong with your chronology about Fester —the facts. Fester was in Dallas for 2 years as Sr Pastor and that place was spinning like a top. He’s gone and bam! down the drain. He goes to DC, a contentious place and in less than three months, it seems to have been stabilized.

                    How exactly did Dreher “get played”? I still am waiting for OCAT’s detractors to state what exactly they said that was ever wrong. (I’ve long given up hope trying to get out of the Stokoe Set what exactly it is that +Jonah did wrong.)

                • Prospective Nomad says

                  Mr. Michalopoulos,

                  I am deeply saddened, but not surprised, to read of what is happening in Dallas. I write as a member of the Antiochian Diocese of Toledo who believes that +MARK was right about the canonical prerogatives of diocesan bishops and right to try to halt rampant financial shenanigans in some of his parishes. By mid-2009, however, the way that he and his supporters waged their battle through OCANews made it clear to me that he had to go–even if he had ultimately prevailed in Damascus. Private correspondence between +MARK and Fr. Joseph Antypas ended up on OCANews, to the benefit of +MARK.. (I am no apologist for Fr. Antypas. I think he should have been suspended for his role in the “captivity letter,” charged with forgery for signing a dead woman’s name to parish checks, and investigated by the Justice Department for the allegedly missing $1 million+ in his parish’s HUD-financed nursing home. But even he, as a priest, is entitled to assume that his private communications with his bishop will not end up on the Internet.) Members of the Archdiocesan Board of Trustees were induced to keep cell phone lines open in private meetings, synopses of which appeared on OCANews, shaped in +MARK’s favor. Someone on the board was induced to leak the chancellors’ report that favored +MARK’s position–again, a position with which I agree. The leak, however, was a clear breach of fiduciary duty, because its disclosure could have subjected the Archdiocese to adverse legal action. In short, it has been abundantly clear for two years that +MARK feeds information to OCANews or causes it to be so fed and cannot be trusted to keep a confidence. Metropolitan PHILIP was wrong on the merits, but no one can blame him for wanting +MARK gone after the events of 2009. The Eparchial Synod could not have functioned with the lack of trust and lack of expectation of privacy that +MARK’s actions and those of his supporters had created. That Metropolitan JONAH either didn’t understand this or didn’t appreciate its gravity was a mistake for which he, regrettably, is paying dearly.

                  Please understand that I am not blaming you for being bamboozled. As a member of the OCA, there would have been no reason for you to follow every detail of the Antiochian train wreck. The current travails in Dallas represent the latest compounding of numerous mistakes that, on the Antiochian side, go all the way back to the manner in which the EOC was received into canonical Orthodoxy. As to the compounding of mistakes on the OCA side, I am grateful, if saddened, to have learned so much from you.

                  • Dn Brian Patrick Mitchell says

                    Thank you for your insight, Prospective Nomad. Curiouser and curiouser . . .

                  • Members of the Archdiocesan Board of Trustees were induced to keep cell phone lines open in private meetings, synopses of which appeared on OCANews, shaped in +MARK’s favor.

                    Dear Nomad,
                    Can you please clarify who have Members of Board of Trustees induced to keep cell phone lines open? Was it + Mark’s idea?

                    • Prospective Nomad says


                      You make a valid point. To the best of my knowledge, no one has ever publicly disclosed which board members compromised the confidentiality of the meeting. The meeting in question was covered by OCANews at
                      Note that only board members were present at the meeting.

                      The specific tidbit about cell phones may have appeared on the now-defunct TheAntiochian.com. To the best of my knowledge, it was never denied.

                      In my post I tried to make clear that I objected to the tactics of +MARK and his supporters in the 2009 period. It may well be the case that zealous defenders of +MARK took some actions without his knowledge and of which he disapproved. To the best of my knowledge, however, he never condemned any leaks to OCANews that benefited him, even when they put the Archdiocese in legal jeopardy. I want to be very careful not to speak evil of dignitaries. For all I know, +MARK may never have personally corresponded, sub rosa, with OCANews. But if he didn’t, people on his “team” did–people with access to privileged information and with a corresponding duty to the Archdiocese. As far as I can tell, he never did anything public or efficacious to restrain them (although I admittedly wouldn’t know what he prevented from being made public.). I would love to be proven wrong about this, because I believe that he was right on the merits, and I know him to be a man of deep prayer and moral conviction.

                  • If what you say in Comment #40 is true, then the comments made in #10 (above) are even more germain:

                    Just FYI…

                    Fr. Joseph Fester officed out of the DOS Chancellery. The computer that Fr. Joseph used (in addition to his laptop) while in Dallas is still there and currently being used by Fr. David Moretti under the direction of Bp Mark Maymon.”

                    There’s your Federal case right there. I believe that every email sent electronically has the sending computer’s MacAddress, Internet IP, Gateway, provider, and time-stamp in the long form of the details section in the header of the message.

                    Fr. Fester should get a court injunction on that Dallas computer pronto for the purposes of discovery, and have the FBI forensic guys – or even a private foreensics investigator – do a scan for pertinent IP addresses on the drive that were contacted through each email. You need a sender, a sent, and a received @. If that checks out, then impound Stokoe’s computer too. Then you got the two harddrives who talked to each other.

                    We’re not talking about a mountain of data here folks. This happened last week. But – then again – on Stokoe’s harddrive is probably a LOT of other interesting I.P.s and contact information too, wouldn’t you say?

                    I hope Fr. Fester has thought of this, otherwise they could wipe that Dallas drive to zeros before the Feds get to it.

                • Hi George,

                  I could not agree with you more…What is Vladyka jonah to do? It is a matter of being stuck between a rock and a hard place. Damned if he does…and damned if he does not…I truly believe he is doing the best a person can given the situation he is in…on top of it all, from his photos, he looks healthy, as if he has taken off some weight.

                  I believe he (Jonah) was led with misinformation about BOTH +Mark and Moretti – perhaps being told they come with “a good reputation,” …a good reputation for what? Not to mention, those who criticize Met. Jonah not being as experienced as some would like…look at Moretti…a priest for ONLY 3 YEARS and already removed from one jurisdiction for talking out against his bishop/disobedience and now adding to the mess in the OCA. I really believe he is a chamellion and will do and say what is necessary for self comfort and preservation.
                  It appears that HB has been used and abused by +Mark and Moretti…they are given Vladyka Jonah’s condo to live in for the time, they can cook- but continue to eat out and post it to facebook and tag each other as if flaunting how “high on the hog” (pardon the pun) they are living…Both were disrespectful in the Antochian Church and now just blatently using Metropolitan Jonah and the OCA as a meal ticket…this has to personally be a slap in the face to Met. J.

                  Furthermore, has anyone seen the photos from Pascha for SS and SN (DC)? I saw both. SS had a caption of “it being the most bitter Pascha in the last 10 years…only the priest and Archbishop Dimitri were smiling…” As for the St. Nicholas DC photos, the people look very prayerful and it looked as if it were a packed house…the ocean of candles for the procession was quite striking…If a picture paints a thousand words…

                  For now, I believe we do need to be mindful of ourselves (and patient) as we allow things to be worked out in the ranks…I personally have been praying a prayer I found in my prayer book “A Prayer in Time of Trouble” the most appropriate for the situation.

                  Christ is Risen!

                  • Indeed He is Risen!

                    I would like to respectfully say that you do not know anything about the Fr. David situation in Terre Haute. I was in Fr. David’s parish for nearly the whole time he was in Terre Haute (I was there until May 2010). Fr. David is a principled man and he was removed for supporting his bishop against the pseudo-papist ecclesiology being put forth by Met. Phillip. Fr. David also complied with the directive from Met. Phillip in order to begin wearing a “clergy shirt” outside of the parish, and was removed anyways. He also realizes that God does not need him to be a priest, and he is not afraid of suffering for the Truth. Please do not talk about things you do not understand.

                    Have a Good Day,

                    • Furthermore, I have not read of any complaints about Fr. David from folks at Dallas Cathedral. Bp. Mark is in a category all of his own it seems.

                    • I have to say that personally I have had nothing but great interactions with Fr. David. He is a great example of a man who is actually trying to reach out and become a part of our community! I see in him great potential as an excellent shepherd. The only complaints I have heard are things about “rookie priest mistakes.” Well thats fine with me. I am at least seeing an effort to love the people around him. Maybe he just needs a little extra help from an experienced priest or Bishop (somebody who is not +Mark).

                      Also, as far as the gossip about eating out and such it is true, both of them have eaten out a lot, but I also know that Fr. David grocery shops and also cooks for himself when he is able to as well, the same could not be said for +Mark. Also, as far as Fr. David and eating out goes, what do you expect from a man who has previously relied on the support of his wife for home cooked meals? I know many (if not most men) who if separated from their wives for any extended period of time would have to live off of fast/restaurant food until they are reunited with their wife! How is that odd? Also, if by “flaunting” it you mean “checking in” on facebook then you must fail to understand what he is using that for. Communication with his family! He wants them to know what he’s up to, facebook seems to be filling that medium.

                      I wish people would focus more on the real issues here and not start nit picking a new priest because of his “rookie mistakes” and because he is associated with +Mark.

            • Antonia says

              The Cathedral does not normally have much, if any attendance, at weekday morning services. (Showing up for weekday paid employment at ones office is customary.) Same for Saturday morning services. A few people have (had) been attending the regular Tuesday morning services. Attendance at every Orthodox church with which I have been familiar drops radically following the major feasts of Pascha and Nativity. The “statistics” offered are not useful. It is true, however, that attendance for Pascha was sharply reduced from the past, as was attendance this past Sunday. That makes a better barometer.

              • Dizzi-n-Dallas says


                Sorry, but I completely disagree with you and here’s how. The bodies that showed up at weekday and Saturday Divine Liturgies did so because they wanted to be there. Today there are no bodies that want to be there and that’s the reason I disagree with you.

                It’s not about the body count; it’s about body count! Get it? The Body Count?

                Dizzi-n-Dallas (My friends just call me Dizzi)

                • Antonia says

                  Tried repeatedly, but still can’t discern that you understood what I wrote.

                  • I think that what Dizzi means is that while there was never a huge crowd for weekday liturgies, there were people who wanted to be there, and that number has dropped down to practically nil.

                    • George Michalopulos says

                      Helga, agreed. The attendance at weekday liturgies is and always has been sparse, but it’s never been zero. One of the things that impressed me about St Seraphim’s was the fact that even during the weekday Reader’s Vespers, lilke on a Tues night, with no priest officiating, you could always count on a dozen or so people being there. Great Vespers/Vigil Sat nght more like 50. Astounding.

                  • not the OCAT parishioner says


                    Could you enlighten us as to why you no longer attend services at St. Seraphim? The rest of your family do. Your sons serve on the altar. Why are you elsewhere? And being elsewhere, why do you feel the need to minimize conditions that you have not been there to see of late?

  7. Heracleides says

    On a previous thread Joseph said: “I would like to know whom MS has in his pocket. What is the dirt he has on them.”

    Exactly. I certainly think that Benjamin has plenty of skeletons in his closet – if even half the things intimated by Nikolai are factual (and who is more likely to have the dirt on a fellow bishop than Nikolai?), then Benjamin is very susceptible to being blackmailed. That this mess came to a head after +Jonah initiated an investigation of Benjamin for allegations of a sexual nature (homosexual in fact) is telling in my view. After all, the adage that the ‘best defense is offense’ remains true. Not that it is likely that Benjamin needed much prompting to attack, but I am sure that Stokoe could see that if Benjamin went down for homosexual acts, then he, as a member of the MC, might be next in line for scrutiny. Stokoe has recently claimed that Benjamin (and the entire Synod in general) have no love for him – then the fact that the agenda of these two men is identical at this point is telling – the ‘enemy of my enemy is my friend’ and all that. Blackmail or not – Benjamin and Stokoe have taken the lavender velvet gloves off – and it appears that this will not end until there is blood on the Synod (Senate) floor.

    • George Michalopulos says

      Heracleidis, do your remember my posting from five or so weeks ago “Cui Bono”? I intimated the exact same thing. That even if the Holy Synod wanted to bury the hatchet for the good of the Church, certain men on it are compromised by our Fearless Scribe. He’s got dirt on them, he won’t let them let the matter go down. In doing so however, he overplayed his hand, big-time.

  8. A. Rymlianin says

    From “Pуccкaя Прaвocлaвная Цеpков O.В.Ц.С.” Paschal Greetings to the heads of Orthodox National Churches, including Met. Jonah.

  9. Anonymous says

    mark.stokoe@irongaterealtors.com eh?

    Seems to me like a well placed letter from a lawyer to irongaterealtors.com notifying them that the trafficking of illegally obtained data by their employees through their servers opens them up to significant liability. It is likely that this constitutes a violation of their employee technology use policy and would have personal ramifications for Stokoe.

    Further, the courts have in the past interpreted the the publication of illegally obtained information as legal only in the narrowest of senses. The fact that Stokoe is receiving this data at irongaterealtors.com is indicative that he is not acting as a journalist in the reception of the data. This may be grounds for criminal charges, even if he has nothing to do with the theft itself.

    If *I* were Fr Fester, I would find a way to subpoena both gmail.com and irongaterealtors.com as fast as possible (before evidence is “lost”).

    At the very least, ethics charges should be brought against Stokoe on the MC, including his conflict of interest and the publication of illegally obtained information.

    • Seraphimista says

      The co-owner of Irongate Realtors is Steve Brown, Mark Stokoe’s “husband.” I wonder if the e-mails Stokoe used on his site that came through his Irongate address somehow implicate Irongate in any possible crime? I wonder if the other owner or owners of Irongate care about this?

      • Dizzi-n-Dallas says


        For God’s sake don’t say “husband”. That ain’t right at all!

        Then again, the MC is obviously AOK with it! I wonder if hubby…oh nevermind!

        Dizzi-n-Dallas (My friends just call me Dizzi)

    • Anonymous says

      Just to be clear on my post above, without the access logs from gmail.com, the only evidence that we have is that an email was sent from Fr Fester’s account to MarkS. Sending an email is not illegal. The only evidence that we have of hackery is that FrFester claims he didn’t send the email. We need the access logs from gmail.com to show that someone was authenticated from a different IP address during the alleged hack.

      • Dn Brian Patrick Mitchell says

        We’re not talking about one or two emails accidentally sent to Stokoe by Fr. Joseph. We’re talking about “scores” of emails embarrassing to Fr. Joseph “obtained” by Stokoe, who won’t say how he obtained them. At least some of these emails were sent directly to Stokoe from Fr. Joseph’s gmail account while Fr. Joseph was in a meeting with a parish committee. But if you need the IP address, Fr. Joseph is working on obtaining it.

        • Anonymous says

          Don’t get me wrong, I think his testimony is damning. However, without objective technical proof, Stokoe can just attack Fr Fester’s credibility, which I suspect he has no qualms doing.

          • Ian James says

            One of the annoyances of Stokoe’s site is that he forces his narrative on the reader. The emails he displays are self-selected. Then he offers commentary between the selections to interpret their significance for us.

            So what’s the problem Mark? Can’t we read? Do we need you to do our thinking for us? Or is your spin the de-facto truth? It sure comes across that you want us to see it that way.

            Since he has the emails, why not publish them all without comment? He’s a journalist, right? He should lay off the editorializing, or at least offer his spin properly labelled outside of the emails themselves.

            Team Stokoe puts a lot of faith in their captain. Are they sure he is calling the right plays? Seems to me he is prone to fumbles.

  10. Ian James says

    If Fr. Fester decides on legal action, the MC must suspend Stokoe from all MC activities until the case is decided. They cannot afford the hit to their credibility that would result if if it is proven that one of their members purloined clergy emails. MC credibility is already suffering because of their inaction after the leaked emails revealed that Stokoe and a handful of cohorts were engaged in back-room dealings. Stokoe has yet to explain his involvement with that group.

    Like George M. posted in another post, OCAT exists to challenge OCANews. OCANews exists to blacken and remove +Jonah. Big difference. It is very important to keep this in mind.

    • Elizabeth says

      Stokoe MUST be removed from MC.

      • Dallas Texas says

        Clearly Stokoe must be removed immediately, as well as others. I guess we will see this week what the new bishop of the Midwest is made of. It’s on him, now.

        • Ivan Vasiliev says

          It appears that Fr. Fester has been removed (according to OCA News) at the request of the Metropolitan. And OCA Truth has backpedaled (or so it seems) regarding the “illegally” acquired emails. Finally, according to the insider, Mark Stockoe, the Politburo and Metropolitan Soviet have overruled the Metropolitan regarding the status of the DOS. Bishop Nikon remains locum tenens there. All in all, it looks as if the the battle is over and the Soviets have one.
          Here’s my prediction: the Metropolitan may (just may) be allowed to briefly remain as head of the Church while all real authority is divested to the Politburo and Metropolitan Soviet. In a relatively short period of time he will “retire” (perhaps even of his own accord, out of disgust with the situation). The MP will be forced to accept this classic Soviet style maneuver.
          So, where to for the dissenters?

          • I hope Mat. Kathy is able to keep her job somehow – I think she was staying behind in Dallas to finish out the school year or something.

            • Nope, sorry.

              She left early for D.C, and unfortunately has a ringside seat for this debauched mess.

        • George Michalopulos says

          Absolutely. My sources told me that Bishop +Matthias (Stokoe’s new bishop) went to him and told him that he could not release any further information about the e-mails and that his continued “investigative journalism” (my quotes) would be incompatible with his continued service on the MC. Looks like MS screwed that pooch.

          The onus is now upon +Matthias. We’ll see what mettle he is made of.

          • What else should be incompatible with Stokoe’s continued service on the MC? Conspiring to remove the Metropolitan without canonical due process? His domestic arrangement? Releasing information from a confidential report?

            If Stokoe is never punished for publishing the names of the people in the SMCAP report, then I really hope OCAT will consider publishing the entire thing plus the response. Some would argue that this would make OCAT as bad as Stokoe, but I assume OCAT has withheld from publishing it out of respect for its confidentiality. If the OCA refuses to assert that confidentiality by taking Stokoe to task for breaking it, I think it would be right for OCAT to publish the report.

            If someone’s going to only feed us part of the story – naming the names, making the people involved look bad without actually presenting any evidence against them – someone needs to tell the whole story.

            • George Michalopulos says

              Totally in agreement Helga. I think that it would be condign punishment for the uber-conciliarists who supposedly believe in lay leadership of the OCA to have the entire contents dumped into the laps of the entire laity. Let the MC answer questions about the miscreants who are not mentioned in the report. Heck, let’s ask why certain bishops are not named.

      • Agreed!!!

        Remove Stokoe!!

  11. “”Chilling” because what other Chancellor would keep a defrocked priest in charge of one of his parishes; one that was suing the Church for $26 million? And if he denies it was his decision, then it would be the decision of the man, +Jonah, he is fighting to protect.”
    STOKOE response to #5 Displaced Lemming on 2011-05-01 21:13 Article “The Forces behind Jonah” (Reply)

    My understanding is that Kondratick was retained by his parish (not by +Jonah or Fester) as administrator. My question is what are the options of either the chancellor or the Metopolitan in telling the parish that they could not employ Kondratick? Can they remove their Antimension? Fire the priest? Just what is it that Stokoe expects the “church administration” to do to the parish?

    I can’t believe that this parish knows nothing about Kondratick’s past. And I believe that he was a priest down there for a while before he was deposed. (Please correct me if I’m wrong on this, I thought that +Dmitri allowed that.) So, what does this parish know that Stokoe does not? It seemed the parish decided this, and they thought enough of the man to keep him even after he was defrocked.

    It seems to me that the administration/Synod has done what was available to it, whether the punishment was appropriate or not. (I hear you, George, about rethinking Stokoe’s trials by Internet…)
    I also am seeing a pattern that Stokoe is not interested in justice (or even accountability or transparency.) He seems more interested in destroying people, and maybe even the church he claims to serve.

    • Fr. Yousuf Rassam says

      You can’t even be on the parish council if the bishop refuses to bless your appointment. Whatever one makes of it the employment of an adminstrator in that parish has at least the tacit blessing of the hierarchical authority.

      • Dn Brian Patrick Mitchell says

        Ref #51, to Fr. Yousuf: The “tacit blessing” of Kondratick to serve as parish administrator seems to bother you greatly. But what about Stokoe’s blessing to partake of the Body and Blood despite his live-in, “in-law” relationship with another man? Does that not count as at least a tacit blessing of gay marriage? Should that not bother you more?

      • Dn Brian Patrick Mitchell says

        Re: 51, to Fr. Yousuf: Does a “tacit blessing” for Kondratick to serve as parish administrator bother you? What about Stokoe’s blessing to partake of the Body and Blood, despite his live-in, “in-law” relationship with another man? Is that not at least a tacit blessing of gay marriage? Should that not bother you more?

        • Fr. Yousuf Rassam says

          Dear Father Deacon,

          Christ is Risen!

          If I admitted that the Kondratick situation bothered me, would I be obligated to enumerate even the top 10 other things that bother me and try to evaluate which bothers me more? Would you really want to take your time reading such extensive musings if I wrote them? I doubt it.

          As for the specific situation you would like me to include in those musings, I have no reason to doubt that Bp. Matthias can handle it, and do so well, and do so with out my help.

          • Maybe we can start an office pool and take bets on whether Stokoe abides by the admonition of his bishop. You know, what day he’ll start leaking –I mean publishing–again. We could also start another pool at that point and speculate on whether he remains on the MC.

            Personally, it’s all going to be moot in a couple of years time. There’s no way that the OCA as presently ruled by the MC/HS hybrid is going to survive.

      • You can’t even be on the parish council if the bishop refuses to bless your appointment.

        That depends on the statutes of the parish and its incorporation. Our PC is elected by the people and does not depend on the bishop. Although we would like him to bless us… all of us.

      • George Michalopulos says

        So Fr Yousef, I assume you will be writing letters to the Locum Tenens of the South asking that Archdeacon Burke be removed forthwith? And that Fr Reese answer for his allowing this grave situation in the first place? Sauce. Goose. Gander. Etc.

        • Fr. Yousuf Rassam says


          Christ is Risen!

          Um, seeing as how I haven’t passed out that sauce to any goose, in that I haven’t written to any hierarch to have Kondratick removed from anything, why would I be obligated to so “sauce” any other gander in Florida?

          What I did do was point out that Kondratick’s situation had to have the approval of the hierarchical authority, and did so because someone was confused or misinformed. I refused, explicitly, to evaluate in that post the situation itself. “Whatever one makes of it

          Is there anybody out there who is confused or misinformed about that the other situation to which you refer?
          If so, I would point out that Archdeacon Burke, like every other deacon and priest, only serves with the blessing of the bishop. For most of the period in question that bishop has been either Arbp. Dmitri, whom you call the gold standard, (with good reason, I agree he is a very good man and one of our very best of arch-pastors), and Met. Jonah (also a good man).

          There, ganders sauced as geese.

  12. Nicholas The Greek says

    Is Moscow the Only potential option for Jonah, and those allied with him? I have always thought highly of ROCOR and maybe Jonah and those bishops who might chose to side with Jonah could become part of the ROCOR Synod. Now I know that ROCOR is part of the MP, but it would seem to me more efficient to put Jonah and who ever might come with him in ROCOR than to be directly under Moscow. Now I might be wrong, but I like the Idea of Jonah being part of ROCOR. This is Just me thinking out loud. Is this too outragous an Idea?

    • If things come completely off the tracks, that is where I will go….. hoping to follow +Jonah and the good bishops.
      May the “episcopalians” rot in their stew…

      • George Michalopulos says

        Nicholas, as I understand it, once the ‘Piscies are gone the OCA will still be here. Then the MP parishes and ROCOR could join the faithful remnant (which will probably be a majority).

        Harry: do I want schism? No, absolutely not. But neither to I want a Church that’s morally compromised, modernist, worldly, and non-evangelical. I don’t believe in divorce but there’s only so much battering a wife can take.

        Look at what happened to ECUSA: they ordained priestesses back in 1976, then mitigated the Gospel, then became openly pro-gay, all the while the traditionalists bent over backwards to accomodate the liberals, hoping that they’d come to their senses. Instead, the rot only spread further until it’s destroyed ECUSA. Unfortunately, the Archbishop of Canterbury is trying to hold together the Anglican Communion using the same tactics, allowing the American tail to wag the Anglican dog, hoping against hope that ECUSA will come to its senses. The African and Asian provinces of the Anglican Church are beggint Dr Williams to let ECUSA go its own way but Williams wants to avoid “schism” at all costs. So where will it end? Eventually the toxins of ECUSA will contaminate the orthodox Anglicans.

        • Chris Plourde says


          How do you understand the term “modernist” and how do you see it working in the OCA?

          I’d like to be clear about these things, because that term has been subject to much abuse in the past 50 years and so has come to mean, for many, “anything I don’t like,” whereas it does have a formal philosophical meaning.

          • George Michalopulos says

            Fair question Chris. Basically a “modernist” in my view is someone who thinks that Dr Phil and Oprah are smarter than the Holy Fathers.

            This reminds me of a quote from an early Desert Father: “In the last days, evil will be so prevalent that those whoever merely abstain from it will be considered heroic.”

            How far we have fallen: in my grandfather’s generation, heroism was defined by a soldier charging machine guns, in my father’s generation by an astronaut being strapped into the nose cone of a rocket. Today, if a bishop doesn’t resist arrest and throw up in the paddy wagon, he’s considered heroic.

    • Ivan Vasiliev says


      I think that the ROCOR set up is not too different from the OCA vis a vis Moscow. I’m of the opinion that something more akin to autonomy would be good right now (elect our own hierarchs, Metropolitan, with ROCA oversight to be sure that they are, in fact, Orthodox in doctrine and behavior). It might also be a good first step towards creating a truly pan Orthodox autocephalous church in the future. But, I am willing to admit on this last issue (a truly pan Orthodox autocephalous church) I may be naive. It is hard to imagine the EP ever letting go of full control over the North American cash cow. At that point it would be reduced to a declining Greek village in the midst of an ever more hostile Islamic sea.

  13. …also am seeing a pattern that Stokoe is not interested in justice (or even accountability or transparency.) He seems more interested in destroying people, and maybe even the church he claims to serve.

    Hm, just the right type of person to have on the Metropolitan council and mincing about in the affairs of the church. He really must have some delicious dirt on quite a few of our “superiors” since he is been around these hallowed halls for years. Or are they now hollowed?

    I don’t know if I should cry, throw-up or be happy that all this comes into the day-light. We have however, a great opportunity to clean-house and then could have a church resurrected from the abuse. Maybe, this is the manure we have to wade through in order to mature. If we can come out of this cleansed and repenting then we will, invigorated, grow again… and become a guide for the other jurisdictions here in NA who suffer similarly.

  14. Prefer to stay hidden says

    I live in the middle of nowhere theres a cathedral just down the road from me and I havent been to it nor have I had communion in over a year. I havent lost my faith nor have I left Orthodoxy but because of sin (mine and others). I regret the way things have gone and unfortunately the other parties involved do not wish to be reconciled. I was even told by the priest (one of the ones involved) that I am incapable of being reconciled with my brother and that I just need to move on with my life because they all have. The sin is pride and vanity. In my particular situation I see and understand what is going on I need pastoral counsoling but dont know who to turn to and I need to be reconciled with my brothers and sister but I need help I need a mediator to stand in who has no agenda except salvation. I have been approached by members of the community at large (non Orthodox) and they have heard the spin that has been put on the situation, and they are angry and I havent said anything to them.

    I say this for two reasons; 1) to ask for pastoral help and 2) to make a feeble observation. Being in the middle of nowhere I end up reading OCA News and OCA Truth and this blog, I have meet +Johna and +Benjamin on a couple of ocassions and I dont have a relationship with either one of them so I am neither a supporter nor a detractor to either one of them. That being said I find what I read to be a he said she said argument, I dont know who is telling the truth or who is lying. What I do see however is the similarity to the situation I am going through locally.

    I see alot of pride (the bad kind), self centerdness, vanity and the humanistic (religious) ideology of I want to be at the top and I dont care who gets hurt. I also see genuine love and concern for the good order of the Church and wanting to defend her and the Shepherds that are to lead the flock. Also I see those who Love the Church and seek to defend it under their own power. Just a feeble observation as I have said, I have no inside knowledge. But I was just thinking that just as I am now reaching out for help maybe we as the OCA need to reach out for help and spiritual guidance and trust in that guidance for our salvation. I dont mean give up being the OCA and become part of another Jurisdiction but to reach out so healing can start to happen.

    Just like with my local problem fear and distrust and hurt and pain makes it diffucult to reach out, So I will continue to pray and seek after reconcilliation and healing. Its just my two cents worth chock full of nievaty (and bad spelling). I dont know if reaching out on a national level can be done or even should be done but I do know I need to do it on a local level.

    Forgive me.

    • Prospective Nomad says

      Mr. Michalopulos,

      Would you be so kind as to provide Prefer to stay hidden with my e-mail address? His experience reminds me of my own, and I would like to make his acquaintance privately. If he does not wish such contact, he can simply ignore the information and his privacy will not have been compromised.

      Forgive me for misspelling your name in an earlier post.

  15. I don’t believe MP can add any parishes in the US which was part of the OCA autocephaly. If any parishes wants to leave it has to go to a jurisdiction other than MP. Yes, it could go to ROCOR, Antioch, Greek, etc but not MP.

    • Pravoslavnie says

      It’s true that the Tomos of Autocephaly forbids the MP to recreate its exarchy here, however the agreement preceding the Tomos required all Metropolia parishes to ‘opt-in’ to OCA by parish vote, with those declining becoming MP by default. The opt out proviso applies to those remaining MP parishes which can only join OCA and not go over to another jurisdiction. I think the agreement is vague over the issue of OCA parishes reverting to MP jurisdiction other than the “no exarchy’ clause, which could leave an unlocked door if a rump OCA consisting of loyal bishops needed protection. The MP already has a handful of parishes, plus the ROCOR in North America, all which exist within the agreement that preceded autocephaly. In fact, the ROCOR is not mentioned at all in that document, and it may provide an opportunity.

      If the OCA goes into schism, and the MP parishes exercise their residual rights to petition for admission into a +JONAH led/MP recognized rump OCA, it’s not utterly impossible for the OCA to petition ROCOR for admission, and have the MP essentially reconstitute a new ROCOR led OCA which would gain MP protection by default.

      The recent reconciliation of ROCOR with the MP means that the ROCOR should become more fully integrated with the MP and likely merge with it at some point. ROCOR status is now similar to that of Hong Kong after the British handover. Some guarantees of self-rule during a transition period, but eventually the two bodies should come back together. Perhaps a North American merger of ROCOR, MP parishes, and a rump OCA recognized by MP could checkmate the anti +JONAH faction and serve as a reason to preserve the ROCOR in North America as a self governing autonomous church under MP protection.

  16. Solovej says

    Rod Dreher is to be commended for his participation in OCAT. He risked his personal and professional reputation by contributing to that site. The forces trying to ostracise Met. Jonah are nefarious in the extreme. From my reading, it is a perverse cabal that has attempted to beseige him. May His Beatitude triumph over his enemies. Да Патриарх Кирилл eго поддержит!

    I am aware of the dual sense of the English “perverse”. Ὃ γέγραφα γέγραφα.

    • Ivan Vasiliev says

      Yes, indeed, may Patriarch Kirill encourage/support him! I think that is his only hope for surviving this mess. If His Holiness does NOT support him, then I pray we will know the reason quickly. Up until now there seems to be no vacillation on the part of the MP.

  17. What a joke the OCA has become. Hierarchs who can’t stop acting like children, a Metropolitan that does whatever he wants. The OCA moves past its financial scandal only to find itself embroiled in another because its bishops can’t behave. This whole thing has got to be one of the most unchristian things I have ever seen.

    Thank god I’m an atheist now.

    • Peter A. Papoutsis says

      Atlas. If this made you an atheist you need to get off the internet, get away from gossiping and get back into prayer, fasting and the Word of God. Never put your trust in men, Only in God. I bid you peace.


      • This did not make me an atheist. I’m just finding all of this stuff out now. I have been an atheist for a while, much longer than this scandal. I would even dare to say that a scandal within the church would in no way have any baring on my faith (though it would leave me very embarrassed that my spiritual leaders can’t behave themselves). I left for completely different reasons.

    • Thank god I’m an atheist now.

      I am so happy for you. And precisely, what was your point again?

      • My point, 67, is that you have men (the bishops, Jonah included) who have the fullness of the priesthood, yet still can’t act any better than this. You would honestly think that the grace of the sacrament of ordination would make them a little better than scheming politicians, which is what they remind me of. I say “thank god I’m an atheist now” because I no longer have to sit there like a parent who has a child throwing a temper tantrum in the grocery store, embarrassed out of my mind, but still having to say “but this really is the real church of god, even though our leaders fight like toddlers.” How are the leaders of the church expected to accountable for all of you in front of god when they can’t even be accountable to each other over their own actions?

        • Dn Brian Patrick Mitchell says

          The great thing about atheism is that you don’t have to argue about who’s right and who’s wrong, because there is no such thing as right or wrong, and so you can just do anything you please and say anything you please, no matter how selfish or nonsensical.

          • Atlas, I hear you, believe me. Does “Turtles all the way down” ring a bell? I love that story.

            Deacon Brian. Not at all. The facts don’t support your statement.

            Many clergy and laity in the Orthodox Church are atheists, right now, right before our eyes. They deny God while reciting the Creed. While these holy words are coming out of their mouths, they state to us that they are atheists openly, publicly, by their words and deeds. By their actions, they deny God. They do whatever they please, absolutely selfishly. They do not make sense. If they knew the difference between right and wrong, and did wrong, at least they would only be hypocrites. Here we have people who must not know the difference between right and wrong, because they say they believe in God, and yet they openly do wrong and openly justify it, saying it is right.

            Many atheists, agnostics and skeptics have come to their convictions honestly and after a lot of struggling. It’s not hard to do what is right because doing right is what human beings need to do. It works better and feels better and is better to do right than wrong. It comes naturally to be good and kind and work hard and live here on earth in peace, if you are not constantly thinking about yourself.

            What galls me, is that the jist of the words I just wrote, about doing what is right and being against those who do wrong, have also been written by the very people who are denying God to justify their own actions.

            Compare what is being said about Metropolitan Jonah, ocatruth and those who support what is being said by George and others on this blog, to what we KNOW is true about Mark Stokoe and Steve Brown, the retired Bishop Mark and the deacon (people I’m sure of), and also the others about whom I’ve heard about but I’m not sure of, and also the one I’m sure of but ain’t gonna talk about. You think their lifestyles ain’t a big deal? Not only that, but you think there is not even more bad stuff hiding underneath that first layer of what we see or suspect? Okay, let’s go down that road. Nope. Can’t. Big fat wall. You can’t be Orthodox and go down that road. It’s not possible.

            Compare, and decide.

            Yuk. I feel sick.

        • You would honestly think that the grace of the sacrament of ordination would make them a little better than scheming politicians

          I think you may have a misunderstanding of how sacramental grace works. It only works to the extent that one strives to live the Lord’s commandments and teaching in the Holy Gospel. It lays dormant in those who don’t and is taken away at the moment of their death.

          How are the leaders of the church expected to [be] accountable for all of you in front of god when they can’t even be accountable to each other over their own actions?

          You are exactly right there, and if they don’t “straighten up and fly right” before it’s too late they are individually in big trouble.

          • A. Rymlianin says

            Nikos, remember what St. John Chrysostomos observed, that ” the road to hell is cobbled on the heads of priests , standing on the shoulders of bishops’. Let us simply contemplate what his fellow bishops did to him as well as to St. Nektarios.
            Enough said.

            • Yes, and Atlas obviously knows nothing about the history of our Church from the very beginning.
              He talks like he is now morally superior since becomming an atheist.
              Well, supposed and proclaimed moral superiority is the distinguishing feature of atheist thinking.

              • Nikos, as I have experienced on many blogs, Atheists are ALWAYS morally, ethically and especially intellectually superior to us believing troglodytes…

                That is what they think.

                I think, however, most of them are humourless, conceited pricks with authority issues… but then, I am a believing troglodyte.

        • How does an atheist thank God, anyway?

    • Elizabeth says

      Oh, Atlas. :”( There are none that are sinless in any church, but God is real and He sent His Son to teach us to love one another. Sadly, we are all too full of sin to follow the Creator’s instructions. I will pray that you will begin to see God’s love and know He exists despite our disrespect for His instructions. Sending a hug to you, Elizabeth. (hug)

  18. Mark from the DOS says

    Am I reading the newest post on OCA Truth correctly to state that Fr. Joseph has been released by the OCA?

    • Heracleides says

      Certainly reads that way to me. Makes me wonder what exactly did transpire at today’s Synod meeting.

      • Lola J. Lee Beno says

        This is a real shock, if indeed true. The whole thing is just so ridiculous. Shame on them!

        • Anonymous says

          Or worse, that now we are looking at *yet another* wrongful termination suit. Someone needs to send these bishops to a “how not to fire people” class.

          • Someone needs to send these bishops to a “how not to fire people” class.

            …. or take away whatever they are smoking.

        • OCAT has edited that line out of their article. So, it may either have been a misunderstanding, or they are not ready to announce it.

          • “Just flailing, desperate nonsense”

            You’re talking about your own comments, right?

          • Utterly pathetic.

            Is this referring to you postings here, lately?

          • because it was easier than answering me

            No, he said something to the effect that it was because of your incessant, repetitive ranting and he wanted to protect the rest of us from it further.

            • George Michalopulos says

              Niko, I’ve decided to let ASIATR have more rope. Since he can’t string two cogent sentences together, he clarifies the issues in ways that make it easier to understand. “Experience keeps a dear school, but fools will learn in no other.” (Ben Franklin).

              Two ways lie before the OCA, both ironic:

              1. it continues is moribund decline into absurdity in which case the traditionalist parishes, dioceses, individuals join the MP/ROCOR, or

              2. the bishops realize that they are just as conservative as +Jonah and take their future cues from him.

              The latter to me would be more delicious, not only because it would stop its continued degredation and possibly turn around, but the Lavender Mafia would itself become moribund.

              I could live with either one.

          • Ivan Vasiliev says


            Right or wrong, they have lost. You understand how it works. The Politburo requested that the Metropolitan remove a troublesome (and embarrassing) priest. The Metropolitan Soviet concurs. It is becoming rather clear who has “won” in this ugly little charade. The question is, will Metropolitan Jonah play Khrushchev and be allowed to hang around for another year or two (or twenty if they feel they’ve really tamed him) or, will he be gone before the end of the week….or, will he just retire in disgust?

            I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again…. we are Byzantines and Russian Byzantines to boot (in the OCA). This is a classic…. the whole thing. It would be laughable if it weren’t so sad.

          • This really is a ball game to you, isn’t it? I’d be fearing death if I were you.

            • George Michalopulos says

              Colette, you’d have to have fear of God to do that though. Clearly the Stokoe Set (and the toxic culturists) don’t.

          • George Michalopulos says

            ASIATR, God always has the last laugh. “Be sure your sins find you out.”

  19. Janet Kirby says

    Christos Anesti! Save, O Lord, and have mercy on all of us sinners. I wanted to comment on email password hacking. I’ve heard that it is easy to hack someone’s facebook account and password. Three of my friends have had their facebook accounts hacked in the past 6 months. And unfortunately, some people use the same password for facebook as they use for emails and bank accounts! So please everyone; be sure that your passwords are not the same as you use on facebook.

  20. It is obvious here what happened. Stokoe claimed to have knowledge of the emails before they were “leaked.” This means that his confidant who had Fr Joe’s password had been perusing his Gmail account and passing on the information to MS. When Stokoe felt it was prudent to offer the proof (during the meeting of the Holy Synod in Chicago), the confidant accessed Fr Joe’s email and “leaked” (completely laughable) the emails by forwarding them to MS. Hours later they were laid bare on OCANews. Someone’s having a field day with semantics around here. It is obvious that neither Fr Joe nor Rod Dreher would have leaked these emails which were private between solely those two. Thus, a crime has been committed.

    This will backfire. Sadly, Fr Joe is now out of a job..

    • George Michalopulos says

      Regardless of whether we are talking about hacking or leaking, if it’s point of origin is not Fr Joe, then it’s illegal –to say nothing about immoral or unethical. What kind of man reads e-mail exchanges between priests and penitents?

      That’s bad news. The good news is that we got the Stokoe Set fighting about semantics rather than fighting +Jonah. If that’s where they want to spend the rest of their lonely little lives, fighting minutiae, fine by me.

  21. Mark from the DOS says

    If Fr. Joseph has indeed been released, I am sad but not surprised. The publication of the e-mails would make him a liability to Metropolitan Jonah and would make it difficult for him to work with a new bishop. I believe it will be our loss and wish him well. However, if that was cause for releasing a faithful priest who has done good things both in the south and in his new assignment, at what point does someone stand up and say that Stokoe must go from the Metropolitan Council?

    Let’s be clear, the e-mails and gmail chats published could only have come from Fr. Fester’s account. Nobody else would have been copied on all the documents. Does anyone here believe that Fr. Fester sent them to Stokoe, or authorized their transmission.

    Even if Fr. Fester left his password saved on a computer, that does not justify logging in, perusing the e-mails and sending them on. It certainly doesn’t justify it from a moral perspective. I am fairly sure it is not legal either, but I would have to check in more detail on the case law. Regardless, the decision to publish them was morally reprehensible. Somebody actually wrote “I can see why he rushed to publish them — to be sure the HS knew what they were dealing with” or something to that effect. I call shenanigans. If all Stokoe cared about was informing the HS, I am certain he could have re-directed the curiously obtained e-mails to a bishop of his choosing. No, he wanted to shame and embarrass a priest and three laymen who do not meet his standards. And read the first release, notice how there is one correspondent that Stokoe does not name. He refers to him only as a correspondent. Why do you think that is? Is it a sudden pang of humanity come over Stokoe, or is it possibly someone he has future use for and withholds his name for later advantage?

    The public airing of this hue and cry over nothing canonical is nothing short of sickening. That the man throwing it all out there for passion-driven sinners like me to read sits on a governing body of my jurisdiction is disgusting.

    Lord have mercy on us all!

    • Dn Brian Patrick Mitchell says

      Re: #67. Mark from the DOS writes:

      The public airing of this hue and cry over nothing canonical is nothing short of sickening.

      Unfortunately for Fr. Fester, there are canons against clergymen plotting against and speaking contemptuously of bishops. I can’t name the canons, but I have read them. He might have been “released” in lieu of being deposed, but who knows at this point?

      • Mark from the DOS says

        I apologize for not being more clear. The hue and cry I was referring to is the OCASpews campaign against the metropolitan. As I said, I am saddened but not surprised by Fr. Joseph’s release. I am still sickened by the public airing of private e-mails for the purpose of embarrassing someone.

    • Dn Brian Patrick Mitchell says

      Unfortunately for Fr. Joseph, there are canons against clergymen plotting against and speaking contemptuously of bishops. I can’t name the canons, but I have read them and remembered them.

    • George Michalopulos says

      Actually, I was told from two different sources (Crestwood and Dallas) that as early f our weeks ago “They” were going to defrock Fr Joe. If he was granted a release then that means several things:

      1. they had no canonical case against him,
      2. they didn’t have a majority of the Holy Synod to go along with this, and
      3. Fester’s enemies overplayed their hand.

      since this came from two different sources (the one in Dallas received this from Bishop Mark himself) I can believe that there was indeed a movement to defrock Fester. Obviousl they’re not as powerful as they thought they were.

  22. Michael Bauman says

    Psalm 12 (11) New King James Version

    Help, Lord, for the godly man ceases!
    For the faithful diappear from among the sons of men,
    The speak idly everyone with his neighbor;
    With flattering lips and a double heart they speak.

    May the Lord cut off all flattering lips,
    And the tongue that speaks proud things,

    Who have said,
    With our tongue we will prevail;
    Our lips are our own;
    Who is lord over us?

    For the oppression of the poor, for the sighing of the needy,
    “Now will I arise”, says the Lord;
    “I will set him in the safety for which he yearns.”

    The words of the Lord are pure words,
    Like silver tried in a furnace of earth,
    Purified seven times.

    You shall keep them, O Lord,
    You shall preserve them from this generation forever.

    The wicked prowl on every side,
    When vileness is exalted among the sons of men.

  23. The Dumping Ground: The Toxic Culture of Clerical Homosexuality

    You need to run this again or try putting it on Mark’s web site. People don’t seem to realise this stuff . . . .

    • George Michalopulos says

      good idea, Rachel!

      • Elizabeth says

        I totally agree. Some may wish to sink the ship if they cannot steer it.

        Please know that if you or your priest is posting on OCANews, your IP is known to MS. From your IP address, he can obtain your latitude and longitude. From google maps, he can see a close proximity of where posts originated. Please warn your priest that his comments are not anonymous.

  24. A. Rymlianin says

    If Fr. Fester has been suspended ,then what has been done to Stokoe?

    • It’s unfortunate but true, Fr Joe has been removed. And I get that from a source that I would trust. Let’s see how long it will take for it to hit the “news”. What sad, sad news…..Fr Joe is a very wonderful man and I feel absolutely horrible for him and his family.

      • That had to be the primary reason for Stokoe to publish and comment on the stolen emails
        because otherwise they weren’t of much benefit to him.
        Well, let’s see; for Stokoe:
        two down (Fr.s R.K. and J.F.)
        and one to go (HB+Jonah).
        And after them, who ????? (Watch behind your backs everyone on the HS, MC, and Syosset Adm.!)

  25. https://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Im-Praying-for-Metropolitan-Jonah-and-the-OCA/

    I hope to see more people pressing “Like” for this, as well as committing to the requested action.

  26. Ashley Nevins says

    All circular without solution by the solution applied being circular without solution. The side that wins gets the grand prize. The ashes. Choosing sides in this is like choosing between bad options. I bet none of you who support Jonah ever expected him to hook up with Nikolai and I bet all of you who support Mark never expected him to be found out to be living in a gay marriage relationship. The rationalizations both sides make for their arguments in the face of this scandal are amazing to listen too from the outside listening in. I believe there about 85 of them posted here.

    If you step out of this with objectivity you can see the Orthodox solution is power vs. power and when Christ in the Gospels was humility vs. power. Yes, I know each of your particular sides is the humble side and the other side is the power side. Power vs. power cannot find a humility solution. Power vs. power is circular without solution. Power vs. power is political solution. Humility vs. power is spiritual solution.

    I love it when the Orthodox say, somebody ought to do something about this. You know, like someone call the FBI. If you leave it to someone else you will never take personal responsibility for your church, but you will have a great time gossiping on a forum about the continual failures of your church. Just think what all of this gossip could be transformed into if Christ was Lord of your church. Evangelism that shares the salvation of Christ through mission and evangelism vs. scandal that gossips about the death of mission and evangelism in your church?

    Humility throws power out. That is what God did in heaven when Satan tried his power play and it is what God did with the Sanhedrin in the Gospels. Humility threw out power. If your church is based upon power and not humility it will only provide itself with a power solution. Power vs. power is power vs. power because power has killed humility and taken over. It’s really simple, kill Christ humility and you kill you church. You have to kill Christ dead in your church first to then be able to kill your church dead second. This is all very difficult and sad to watch. The solution is right in front of all of you and you cannot see it for your power blinding you to it.

    I could tell you what the cause of power vs. power is, but not a one of you would believe me. You would only want to throw me out if I did. I am very troubling for an Orthodox read. I confront its failure by power that is not humility that leads to relevancy. I know the difference between power vs. power and humility vs. power. It goes to structure and system of church. It goes to basis of church and the basis of a church is the thinking of a church. If a church thinks power it has particular outcome. If a church thinks humility its outcome is different than the power thinking outcome. Is the Orthodox basis power or humility? What does it outcome tell you it is based upon?

    I look at who your claim to be to see if you are power or humility based. Who do the Orthodox claim to be? I am sure one of you will soon be telling me, and it will not provide you with the humility solution or you would be found in solution and not in failure. I look at your hips more than I do your lips. Your hips prove your lips, but all of you believe your lips prove hips. There is a lot of lip on this forum and not much hips on this forum. I see it in continual corrupt failure state of the EOC. Your lips move, but not your hips.

    Power vs. power cannot throw power out or it would throw itself out. Power vs. power throws itself out and the church goes into a death spiral. Only humility vs. power can throw power out in this context. I read that in the Gospels. The Gospels are a clear warning to a church not to become power based or tradition based and because that only leads to power vs. power and therefore no solution. A humility based church is humility vs. power that can throw power out and replace it with humility. That is solution. Yes, I know, power disagrees with me.

    If you replace power with power you only go circular without solution by your power. If you replace power with humility you will find solution. Oh, BTW, when humility throws power out its throws out the structure and system of power or power remains in power. If the structure and system of power does not change nothng changes and you remain circular without solution.

    After WW 2 we threw out both the Nazi and Imperial Japanese power leaders and their structures and systems of power. They were top down and closed structures and systems of absolute power and control. They were dictatorships of POWER. We replaced them with bottom up and open systems of freedom. If we had not we would have only ended up in world war with one or the both of them again. They were based upon power that wants control over all. They were based in power thinking for you and you not thinking for yourself in freedom. What replaced them was based upon humility. Freedom is humility compared to dictatorship. Humility threw them out. It only makes sense when you throw out dictatorship of power that you throw its structure and system of power out with the dictators.

    Christ threw Satan and the Sanhedrin out by humility and not power. He threw their structures and systems of power out. They are dictatorships with dictatorship structures and systems of power and control rule. Christ is humility vs. power. Orthodoxy is based upon power vs. power. That is what is going on in the OCA Synod this week. It is not humility vs. power. It is power vs. power and I am sure one side or the other will tell me how humble it is to the other and when both sides are imploding the church by power vs. power.

    Humility vs. power divides. Power vs. power erases. The EO believes division is wrong. They are power vs. power. Christ is divison from power. He is humility vs. power. One erases itself into irrelevant insignificance and the other divides to take mission and evangelism forward. Yes, I know no Orthodox has ever looked it quite like this. Power vs. power does not really understand humilty vs. power. Power really only understand power whereas humility can see right through power. I am like really scary to an Orthodox. I know the difference between good and evil. I know the difference between humility vs. power and power vs. power. I read that to understand that in Genesis chapter 3 and in the Gospels. I read it with the mind set of humility vs. power and not with mind set of power vs. power. You see, I understand the difference between how power thinks and how humility thinks. I know how a structure and system of power thinks in comparison to how a structure and system of humility thinks.

    God is not above throwing your structure and system of power out and replacing it with a structure and system of humility that can take the Misson of the Gospel forward to places like China. God is not going to wait for the Orthodox. He will simply bypass you like He did the Sanhedrin to get the mission and evangelism job done before He comes. God is a straight line to solution and solution is who and what He uses to take mission and evangelism forward. He cannot use circular without solution to move mission and evangelism forward. That only makes sense.

    Yes, I know the Orthodox are right in their power and since I am not under the power and control of Orthodoxy as my salvation I am wrong. I believe I will stick with humility vs. power as my salvation rather than convert to power vs. power as my salvation. I know the difference between them. I see the salvation outcome of power vs. power and it not salvation that I have that is humility vs. power. Yes, I know. It is not humble of me to tell you this and because it is humility vs. power telling power vs. power that its got God wrong. Power vs. power cannot be wrong or its loses all of its power to claim itself right.

    I am sure some of you will want to show me how wrong that I am. Please do. I will not be responding. The post stands on its own. Your responses will tell the story of how well you understand the differences between humility vs. power and power vs. power. They will tell the story of how well any of you really understand what is really going on in the Synod of power vs. power this week. This has been the short version of power vs. power vs. humility vs. power. The longer version can be found in the Gospels.

    I do not believe that the OCA is going to have a humility vs. power outcome. I believe it is going to have the outcome that is the basis of the EOC. POWER. The coming weeks will either prove me right or wrong. It will not be what any of you say that might agree or disagree with me. The OCA stands on its own. It speaks for itself by its outcome. It will either be a humility outcome or a power outcome. It will either be a worldly outcome or a Christian outcome. I promise, and all of my promises to the EO come true. All of them.

    Just in case any of you are wondering I am a western rational evangelical organic Christian. I am a bottom up and open system Christian. I am because that is how I believe Christ came to us in the Gospels. I believe He came as humility vs. power. I believe He came as a bottom up and open system.

    I really like that books Pagan Christianity, Toxic Faith and The Subtle Power of Spiritual Abuse. You might say they give away my Christian DNA.

    They are books that power vs. power cannot write. I have only seen humility vs. power writes such books. If power vs. power has written a book close to these I would just love to read it.

    Ashley Nevins

    • Heracleides says

      Sheesh! I thought you had departed forever….(at least that’s what you said); knew it was to good to be true.

    • Oh shoot…! That is all we need, that you show up here, again, and pee into the soup. Go in peace, but go!

      “…I am a western rational evangelical organic Christian” Just wondering, are you bio-degradable as well?

      • “western rational evangelical organic Christian”

        I can’t find or recognize that mentioned or alluded to anywhere in Holy Scripture

        • I can’t find or recognize that mentioned or alluded to anywhere in Holy Scripture

          Nikos, it is written in the constitution of “The only real, duotarian, first and only true tabernacle of the followers of Ctulhu and the two semesters of holiness cinquecostal unity fellowship…”

    • George Michalopulos says

      Ashley, zZZZZZZZZZZZ……

    • Peter A. Papoutsis says


  27. Very nice site! is it yours too