Dokos: The Net Widens or is it. . . More Bishops, More Checks?


Earlier, we reported on developments in the alleged embezzlement scheme of Fr James Dokos and three GOA bishops who were beneficiaries. It appears now that another bishop, Metropolitan Gerasimos of San Francisco has also been the recipient of Dokos’ largesse.

Again, for me the takeaway is why are bishops (who are bachelors) given money from trust funds in the first place? Aren’t they salaried? Sure looks like baksheesh to me.

Stay tuned for more developments…

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  1. Why they’re not just bachelors, they’re *chosen from the ranks of the monastics*. Don’t you see the funny hat? Therefore they have taken vows of poverty. There is obviously some mistake.

  2. Reality check. The checks total $2100. Big hairy deal. Now if it was ten times that amount there might be a story.

    • Exactly how much money are we talking about? Based on the checks you post, I don’t see a smoking gun.

    • How do you know it was missappropriarion? Generally large amounts (tens of thousands) should be well accounted for and if they’re not it’s suspicious. A few hundred here and there, even the check for $1500, is fairly small. The value of the dollar isn’t what it was and the $100 bill has become the new fifty. My company, for example only requires reciepts for airfare, car rental, and hotel. Everything else is either per diem or reimbused without reciept. Tracking every penny is too much of a hassel and a waste of time. Anyone who thinks total transparency and accountability is a good thing should try reading the FAR (Federal Aquisition Rules). It was put together by people who had the good intention to stamp out corruption. But that’s also why the military pays $500 each for hammers (that’s a bulk rate mind you) and the government seems like it wastes so much money. The cost of stamping out frausd has probably far outstipped what would have happened if the FAR had never been addopted.

      My point in all this is mind your own business.

  3. Fr. George Washburn says

    George tells us the “takeaway” for him is “why are bishops given money from trust funds in the first place?”

    George gives us a clue to what is really going on in his choice of the word “takeaway?” Facts and/or the conclusions that follow from them are properly said to be “takeaways,” but a question, with no answer or supporting facts given, is not a takeaway.

    That is, not unless you are committing the logical fallacy of assuming the conclusion, and trying to get the careless reader to join you. We can imagine (there’s that darn word “imagine” again) that the bishop is doing all kinds of bad things with the money, but there is no evidence of it. We can imagine that Fr. Dokos had bad reasons for sending the money too, but there is no evidence of that either. All we have is checks with amounts and cryptic words in the memo line that give no indication whatsoever what good, bad or indifferent purpose was to have been served.

    The lack of evidence of any wrong so far does not stop our intrepid editor from smearing by innuendo, however. Why? Because, generally speaking, he has become an opponent of the Orthodox episcopacy and considers it his political right or duty to treat any one of them as guilty until proven innocent.

    And to the extent that George’s otherwise well-oiled imagination really can’t come up with any beneficial and decent uses the Metropolitan might put such checks to, I can suggest a few off the top of my head : camp scholarships, support of mission parish work, seminarian subsidy, continuing ed gatherings for parish clergy, medical treatment for himself and/or retired or needy clergy, travel and honoraria for visiting speakers, costs of oratorical and folk arts contests, etc.

    Fr. George

  4. big hairy deal says

    Hi dan

    It is at least ten times more. Check out the links in the following webpage and connect the dots. As to why the bishops aren’t doing anything about the Ephraimite monasteries mentioned, I was under the impression that they are all stavropegial and thus under the omophor of the patriarch of Constantinople. He would have to oversee them, or am I mistaken?

    • j. phillips says


      I followed the link you offered to see what it was all about and in reading the most recent post, I noticed a great error. The site seems to confuse Elder Ephraim (current abbot of Vatopedi monastery) who is the subject of the post and the Elder Ephraim (former abbot of Philotheou monastery) who founded the Greek monasteries in North America. The site seems suspect to me if it can’t get it’s story straight on who it’s actually talking about.

    • Christopher Jones says

      According to the GOA charter and the Eparchial Synod’s canonical regulations concerning monasteries, the Ephraimite monasteries in the US, like all monasteries, are 

  5. Fr. George Washburn says

    Good morning friends:

    I’d like to further the flagging dialogue over George’s *most* revealing question “Why are bishops given money from trust funds in the first place?” There are several answers that we haven’t discussed yet.

    1. Because group enterprises in our modern world, whether charities, corporations, churches, or countries, have to have someone hold the money.

    2. Because Orthodox ecclesiology says that the person to trust with final power over money and property is not the Treasurer or Secretary of the Treasury or a committee, but rather a single individual, the bishop.

    3. Because our legal/tax/financial system allows, even encourages, large sums of money to be concentrated in “legal fictions” such as trusts which disburse to charity through whatever number of trustees are designated.

    4. Because Orthodox laity do not give as readily or steadily as their evangelical counterparts to the work of the Church, and the services people expect bishops to deliver take way more than other revenue sources provide.


    Fr. George

  6. Johnny Babarakis says

    The amount of the checks is irrelevant. My understanding is that the trust documents specified how the money was to be spent. I believe the money was to be used for construction and upkeep of the church’s cultural center. Not sure that as reported, fancy dinners, health club memberships, credit card bills and salon/spa visits were in the mix. Also not sure if gifts to different bishops was part of the plan either when the trust was created.

    NO ONE has offered up an explanation as to why the funds from the trust were used for purposes seemingly in conflict with the trust declarations. I think this is a fair question.

  7. Fr. George Washburn says

    As of the writing of this message, Johnny, you have 5 “thumbs up” – and one is from me. Trustees, especially clergy, should act in accord with the trust documents until/unless relieved of those strictures in some officially approved way – such as an amendment to the trust or a court order, for example.

    But let’s not forget that trust documents may or may not include such limits. You “understand” that, Fr. Dokos violated the terms of trust, and you “believe” it specified a narrow range of permissible expenditures, but that still suggests some form of hearsay (somebody you like, trust, respect, said so, perhaps.) and not your own direct observation and interpretation of the documents. And even if you had, they sometimes are worded in such a way that, under the laws of that particular state, even trained lawyers will disagree as to how much or little leeway the trustee has.

    My point is why rush into print to condemn bishops, or even Fr. Dokos, until more is known? Is the internet (and its manipulators) SO divinely sanctioned (“the powers that be are ordained by God,” after all, and boy is the internet gossip/smear powerful!!) or are we so stupid and lacking in experience that we have to ring alarm bells (that cannot be effectively “unrung”) posthaste before the facts are in?

    And while your statement “The amount of the checks is irrelevant” is true in the strictest sense, there is such a thing as a sense of proportion, of not making mountains of molehills. And it is indeed a fair set of questions to have asked if the trust is as specific as you think, or even if it isn’t.

    Isn’t today the day Fr. Dokos must respond to the AG? Time should tell what his mistakes were, and it seems like there probably were some. I can wait, and you sound like you can too. Meanwhile I get to repent …and pray … some more.

  8. Johnny Barbarakis says

    Just to be clear, I am not condemning anyone at this point. My use of the words understand and believe were purposeful to draw the line between inference and fact. I based my comments off of information quoted in the Chicago Tribune, but willfully leave open the option that these are not accurate statements.

    What I can say is that in our world of internet, texting, etc. perception in many cases is reality. While in no way condemning Father Dokos and/or the bishops, the fact that no one has offered a simple explanation after 9 months of this is troubling. Occam’s Razor roughly states that given “The explanation requiring the fewest assumptions is most likely to be correct.” Given the denials of wrongdoing without any plausible reasoning behind the actions, people have little recourse but to connect the dots and draw the conclusion of bad behavior here.

    The unfortunate side effect here is the collateral damage to Sts. Peter and Paul as the parish twists in the wind with the net effect that attendance, participation and fundraising are down dramatically. I find it hard to comprehend that given the withering of this once strong and vibrant parish that the diocese has not stepped in to offer an explanation.

    I hope and pray that this is all a huge misunderstanding and that healing and renewed faith can begin.

    • Fr. George Washburn says

      Good morning friends:

      I believe Johnny is spot-on with this comment: “What I can say is that in our world of internet, texting, etc. perception in many cases is reality.”

      What I think he means is “perception becomes reality ….regardless of the actual facts.” Why is this true?

      Because the people using the technology are unwilling to look carefully at how it is being misunderstood and misused … folks like us. We have been conditioned by TV and secular politics to live like Pavlov’s famous dogs, salivating on cue when hot-button bells are rung. Friends, the compulsive engagement in premature allegation-swapping, speculation, blaming and flaming and quarreling, based on people like George mistakenly trumpeting rumor and assumption as fact – i.e. Bishop Melchizedek as the new Metropolitan or the release of Met. Jonah to ROCOR – is nothing more than the sin of gossip in a very, very thin disguise.

      Of course the actual, egregious wrongdoing of some significant leadership figures has been very damaging. It tempts us into a pessimistic, self-exalting rush-to-judgment mentality that jumps on bandwagons (and people) before the facts are even close to in. What is wrong with waiting a while for reality, not perception, to be reality? Must we enslave ourselves and others to ego? Pride? Fear? Crappy church politics in mufti?

      Love for Christ and the Church ought to constrain us but doesn’t oftentimes. Where is doesn’t self-interest should, based on Christ’s promise that people will be measured by God by the same measure they use on other people. Ouch for me and many others!


      Fr. George

      • Friends, the compulsive engagement in premature allegation-swapping, speculation, blaming and flaming and quarreling, based on people like George mistakenly trumpeting rumor and assumption as fact – i.e. Bishop Melchizedek as the new Metropolitan or the release of Met. Jonah to ROCOR – is nothing more than the sin of gossip in a very, very thin disguise.

        Fr. George, does that mean that you have confirmed that Metropolitan Jonah has not been released?

        If it turns out Metropolitan Jonah has actually been released, and it is simply not yet public for some necessary reason, you would be falsely accusing George of “trumpeting rumor and assumption as fact” in the matter.

        • Fr. George Washburn says


          The only good rejoinder to this piece of sophistry I can think of for now requires me to directly quote Albert Alligator from Walt Kelle’s wonderful old comic strip, Pogo: :”Bazz Fazz.”

          When and if it turns out I am mistaken about the release, I will own it, and if I am slow to do it we can count on Helga to remind. In the interim, on the public record, release hasn’t been consummated.

          Bazz Fazz again! And may the Lord give rest to the soul of Walt Kelly. And our departed soldiers.

          Fr. G

          • Fr. George, please watch and listen to the first two minutes and thirty seconds of this video before continuing to comment on the matter of the release.

            If this is still nothing but wild rumors and baseless speculation, George went really far this time!

            • Fr. George Washburn says

              I did watch what he asked me to, friends, and for a full 2:35 just to be sure! It seems clear that at that point both Met. Jonah and the priest depicted (whose name I do not know) believed that a letter Met. Hilarion had just received constituted Met. Jonah’s release. No doubt this belief spread quickly. The officially published lists of ROCOR hierarchs do not include his name as of today as far as I can see..

              They were either correct or incorrect, and the time in between (without what might be expected to be an official, full confirmation) seems to suggest that the actual interpretation of the letter was less simple and straightforward than they believed at the time. (I think ROCOR would be the best fit realistically available and hope that it happens on good terms soon.)

              • That priest is Fr. Victor Potapov. He and Metropolitan Jonah had their information from the addressee of the letter. Yet you want to fault George for spreading “rumors and innuendo” because he drew the same conclusion that Met. Jonah and Fr. Victor did?

                I’ve asked you before to contact Met. Jonah yourself if you want to engage in more than speculation, and you clearly haven’t. You only seem to want to give George and other commenters a hard time based on your limited understanding of the situation. I would hope an Orthodox priest could find better uses for his time.

                • Fr. George Washburn says

                  Helga imagines that I haven’t tried to contact Met. Jonah, but is wrong. He has a very full life.

                  And yes, I do fault George for dealing in unconfirmed rumors. I don’t believe they help the Church, Met. Jonah or those of us who find ourselves paying attention to them.

                  • I am not following you on this-George stated what was annuonced from the pulpit. Why would you call that a rumor? It could be mis-information or the like, but you chose to use an inflammatory word about something you don’t know with the intend on attacking your brother. I’m with Helga on this, I can think of better things for you to speak up about. The facts are these; all paper work has been completed, mailed, received between both parties. All are waiting for the OCA to announce it. That’s it. Why it is taking so long-I’m going to assume it’s because the OCA is very busy.

                    • Fr. George Washburn says

                      Until a marriage ceremony is conducted the parties are still single, even though a ring has been given, the cake has been baked, the champagne is on ice and a license issued. If George was only reporting an engagement, I would/should be silent, but it sure seemed to me he was telling us a wedding had happened.

                      And why should we believe the Colette version any more than anyone else’s?

                      As for Colette’s question about delay, what an irony it would be if the premature announcers had actually delayed the wedding!

                    • Fr. George writes, “What an irony it would be if the premature announcers had actually delayed the wedding!”

                      What an irony for the critic of “unconfirmed rumor” and “speculation” to engage in it himself.

                    • Bishop Tikhon Fitzgerald says

                      collette and “Helga”. This is a link to the official website of the OCA, where all retired hierarchs IN the OCA are listed; A simple check on this link will show you that His Beatitude, Most Blessed Metropolitan Jonah, formerly the Firat Hierarch or “Primate” of the OCA, is STILL in the OCA as of today, May 31st, 2014.

                      Maybe the ROCOR doesn’t have a pension plan or maybe His Beatitude has no intention of going anywhere or doing anything that would cause him to risk having to move away from wonderful D.C. or not live in the style to which he has become accustomed, so nobody’s pushing it. Just think! What if he were to be received into ROCOR and then be sent to Australia!!!!! or South America! no no no no. He’s not pushing this at all, that is to say, he and the OCA are in agreement that he’s not going anywhere unless he can stay where he is and do what he’s doing without having to administer or oversee anything!

                      By the way, some people are going all to pieces upon learning that Archbishop Seraphim is retired and on pension. They don’t understand that even if he were deposed by the Holy Synod and jailed by the authorities in Canada, he’d still get the pension in which he is invested; it’s the LAW.

                    • Bishop Tikhon, I know Metropolitan Jonah personally and am very close to him. You are talking out of your neck and way off base, you have no idea what you’re talking about. The OCA Holy Synod is holding his release up, for whatever reason, not him. He will leave DC as soon as he finds a good property on which to found his monastery. And as to, “the lifestyle to which he is accustomed” that is so stupid I won’t even dignify it with a response. I hope people know enough about you to know you don’t really know half of what you claim to know. I’ll send Vladyka your best, fyi. Why don’t you contact him and ask him yourself rather than spreading rumors? Gossip and lying is a sin, you of all people should know that.

                    • Your Grace, in the very last part of the second video of the lecture (starting at 1:23:40), Metropolitan Jonah discusses his future plans within ROCOR.

                    • “What if he were to be received into ROCOR and then be sent to Australia!!!!!”
                      Goodness, Your Grace, you really haven’t travelled much outside the US, have you? Australia is hardly a third world country, you know! Why, the GFC which impacted the US so negatively hardly registered a ripple here, where there has not been an economic recession since 1990-91. Further, in ROCOR circles the archdiocese of Australia and New Zealand, which remains under the omophor of the Most Reverend Metropolitan Hilarion has long been regarded as the jewel in ROCOR’s crown. You really shouldn’t let Nikolai’s jaundiced views, based upon his somewhat unhappy sojourn here, shape your views on the subject. As for ROCOR’s South American eparchy, they already have a bishop, an Australian by birth, as it happens, of Latvian parentage, the erudite Bishop John of Caracas.

                    • Bishop Tikhon Fitzgerald says

                      Basil, you’re so far off base that I hardly know where to start, but I’ll try:.. First, I LOVE Australia and the idea of Australia and always have! . If I weren’t so old I’d look into moving there. Second, I believe I know Metropolitan Jonah better and longer than you. MY POINT was about HIM and HIS aspirations. HE’s the one who would think he’d be sacrificing his great accomplishments of (1) getting out the monastery and (2) getting to live in DC if he was “stuck” in Australia, rather than living in NW DC on Edmunds building up a legend while having no responsibilities. HE would rather be in DC or Russia than in Australia. Do you get it now? Same with S America. Bishop Nikolai never said a negative or unkind word about Australia. I think he conferred with Metropolitan Hilarion there when the latter visited and remembers it fondly since it was a step on his entrance into ROCOR.

                    • Bishop Tikhon Fitzgerald says

                      Matthew, I’ve known Metropolitan Jonah for a long time. You wrote this rebuke to me:
                      “Bishop Tikhon, I know Metropolitan Jonah personally and am very close to him. You are talking out of your neck and way off base, you have no idea what you’re talking about. ” Have you known Metropolitan Jonah since the time he was doing secretarial work as a layman for a CSB concern in San Francisco? Have you discussed with him several times wheher he would become a monk or not before he was ordained. Have you had a personal conversation with his former mentor at SVS, ever-memorable Fr. John Meyendorff, as to his future? Did Metropolitan Jonah call you, as he did me, after his resignation and say ‘After all is said and done, i DID become a Bishop and I did, finally, as Metropolitan, serve in Russia as such, and I even stood on the very same eagle as Patriarch Alexi had stood on! How cool is THAT?””” (I didn’t find words to answer that one, Matthew!)
                      As for his release to ROCOR being “held up”. where I went to school, that would mean it hadn’t happened. You, George, “Helga” and his other fans, however, say it happened. IN WHAT SENSE HAS METROPOLITAN JONAH BEEN RELEASED TO ROCOR? Answer, in no sense whatsoever…in other words, “nonsense.” I think Romney’s election to the presidency has also been held up.

          • Thomas Mathes says

            Such a release cannot be canonical. First, because Metropolitan Jonah is still Primate of the OCA in America. His resignation was made under duress and so null and void. Second, even if he had legitimately resigned (and he mostly certainly did not), the members of the OCA Synod cannot release Metropolitan Jonah. They have lost their canonical authority due to their conspiracy against Metropolitan Jonah, their primate, and due to various other violations of the canons as pointed out by the Sons of Job. The release of Metropolitan Jonah to ROCOR is a canonical impossibility.

            • Fr. George Washburn says

              Good morning friends:

              Fortunately for us, the Church, and Met. Jonah, I doubt that Mr. Mathes is correct on any of these points – points that if true would have the effect of consigning Met. Jonah to some sort of permanent limbo where he was excluded from ministry in the OCA and couldn’t serve as a bishop elsewhere until and unless the Emperor should intervene.

              Secular courts in the US hate internal religious disputes over power and would almost certainly refuse to intervene without some clear wrong **cognizable in secular courts** as a basis for relief. “Duress”.is an ambiguous term which does not furnish a basis for such relief as Mr. Mathes seems to be using the term.

              How is he using it? To stand for piling a lot psychological pressure on someone to make him want to comply. In effect there were people saying “we are going to give you a hard time at every turn until you go away” – at least according to the sum of the publicly known stuff I have seen. I do not doubt that influential people were saying essentially that to him (and that was a major influence on his decision) ….any more than I doubt that he made the right decision for the future of the OCA and his own ministry as an Orthodox leader.

              Secular courts intervene on the grounds of duress a) only when a victim asks them to and b) generally speaking only when there has been a crudely physical form of harm or threat of physical harm to the victim or someone close. “We are gonna make you and your relatives miserable by mean and petty things” does not qualify. “We are gonna cut your nose or your brother’s nose off if you don’t” does qualify.

              But only when asserted. Met. Jonah clearly isn’t asserting, and the sheer length of time that has elapsed since the event makes it all the more likely he won’t. That is not “how he rolls.”

              And the longer one waits to invoke secular courts the weaker the case becomes if one even has one in the first place.

              And what if he did? Could he possibly rule the OCA effectively if restored? No. Would he want to try again on the very off chance it might work, risking all the damage it would cause to go there? Of course not. Neither his own health nor the Church would withstand that.

              Mr. Mathes doubtless operates from some commendable core of idealism, but his comments and counsel are the equivalent of all the crypto-royalists in various countries who plot and fume for decades or centuries over restoring the latest scion of a dethroned dynasty. If he imagines that the actual tale of 20 centuries of Apostolic Succession under all the emperors, czars and sultans who picked and removed them was pristine canonicity incarnate, he is a pipe-dreamer. This was nothing compared to the way those guys played ball.


              Fr. George

            • Bishop Tikhon Fitzgerald says

              Thomas Mathes obviously has never seen the English comedy series “Are You Being Served.” If he had, he would have known to add the phrase “And I am unanimous in that” to his irrational outcry which was totally Mrs. Slocum!. I hate it when people like him attribute base cowardice or immature hysteria to Metropolitan Jonah by saying he was ‘forced” to resign.

              • Thomas Mathes says

                Bishop Tikon and Fr. George, my logic is impeccable, not irrational. Helga has pointed out before that “what you describe as ‘pressure’ was duress, designed to obtain the resignation under false pretenses.” (April 9, 2013) She reiterates that Metropolitan Jonah “didn’t simply resign, he was forced to resign, under uncanonical and possibly illegal circumstances.” (July 9, 2012) Since his resignation was not canonical, it “is as phony as a three-dollar bill” (July 12, 2012) and so no others can be considered as “potential Metropolitans because we already have one” (August 2, 2012). Therefore, she refuses to recognize Archbishop Tikon as “Metropolitan” and OCA Primate since his “purported election as Metropolitan was uncanonical” (March 31, 2013). But therein lies the problem. Given that Metropolitan Jonah is still the OCA Primate, he cannot become a retired bishop in ROCOR even though Helga believes that is in his best interest.

                I notice that neither one of you dared to attack my point that the OCA Synod has lost its canonical authority. Once again, Helga supports me. On July 8, 2012, she wrote that “the OCA Synod” was no longer “legitimate” because “they forced Met. Jonah to resign.” On the next day, she indicted them for violating the canons in as much as “ALL the bishops of the OCA conspired against him.” You yourselves can also look at the indictment of the OCA Synod presented on this website in the article “Sons of Job: The Canons Prohibit the Bishops from Voting at Parma.” The canonical violations listed there prohibit the bishops from exercising any authority for as the Sons of Job point out: “The canons state that anytime an allegation of malfeasance is made against a bishop, he is required to withdraw from active service until the veracity of the allegation is determined.” (October 29, 2012) Therefore, since the Synod conspired against their Primate, and have violated other canons, they have no authority to transfer Metropolitan Jonah to ROCOR.

                P.S. I have seen the show ““Are You Being Served,” but I found it too silly to take seriously.

                • Fr. George Washburn says

                  Please notice the way in which Mr. Mathes replies, friends. Purporting to be a canonist of a higher order, he actually quotes none of them, let alone the Church’s consensus as to how they should be interpreted and applied. That may be how **he rolls** (if he exists and is not another pseudonym) but it ain’t how Orthodoxy does.

                  I recall discussing this subject with the late Archbishop Peter L’Houllier, one of the foremost Orthodox canonists of our times, at King Chwan Chinese Restaurant on Ocean St. in Santa Cruz in August 1998. He pointed out how former evangelicals (like me) who convert to Orthodoxy are used to facile proof-texting from scripture with little if any reference to the consensus of Church Tradition as to interpretation.

                  This habit then is unconsciously, but sometimes oh so smugly, carried over into **imagined** Orthodox purity and correctness. Mr. Mathes is Exhibit A of this sort of blindness – for in addition to omitting any exact reference to the canons he simply makes conclusory statements and then refers seriatim to the past pronouncements of Helga and Colette as if they were canonical authorities or quoting Tradition’s consensus.

                  What an absolutely ridiculous argument Mr. Mathes makes in suggesting that any bishop who has been accused by someone of a serious offense is automatically deprived under the canons of the right and duty to exercise his ministry until the claims have been dispelled.

                  First flaw – bishops treated as guilty until proved innocent, something the Church has never taught.

                  Second – accusations without formal charges count to disqualify? Another ridiculous statement. There were no formal charges pending, let alone any that had been determined to have sufficient merit to disqualify.

                  Third – a great deal of the clamor came from the anonymous. Scripture says not to consider an accusation against a bishop except from the mouths of two or three witnesses, does it not? Why? Because even then gossips were prepared to trash the hierarchy carelessly. How much more in this day of anonymous internet assassination?

                  The scriptures (Proverbs) say that the fool is wiser in his own conceit than seven men who can render a reason. Mr. Mathes has demonstrated that he is not the latter and bears a very close resemblance to the former.


                  Fr. George

                • Bishop Tikhon Fitzgerald says

                  Are “Helga” and Thomas Mathes the same person? The same brain seems to be ‘at work’, no?

                  Yes, ‘Are You Being Served is wonderfully silly; and Mrs. Slocum’s favorite and wonderfully silly pontification, i.e., “And I am UNANIMOUS in that,” had never been surpassed until today. We now have Mr. Mathes’s “My logic is impeccable!” Oh, ‘sometimes the days are just too short!

                • Who to blame says

                  You ended by saying “P.S. I have seen the show “Are You Being Served,” but I found it too silly to take seriously.” The same can be said of your “impeccable logic.” A false premise doesn’t lead to any logical conclusions which are to be believed. And your source is Helga? I’d rather take the word of Scrooge McDuck over Helga’s rantings. In the end it makes no difference what you think, as the defining authority belongs to the Church. And since the Church (all Orthodox Churches in this case) recognize Metropolitan Tikhon as the Primate of the OCA, that’s what is the reality of the situation.

                • Michael Bauman says

                  Logic fine premises wacky.

                • Thomas, I was wondering what you were up to, since you have previously posted here arguing the exact opposite of these comments you have recently submitted. Cute… hardly.

                  No, Thomas, there is absolutely nothing wrong with Metropolitan Jonah going to ROCOR. My opinion of the OCA, and I think of it as rarely as possible, really has no bearing on the situation. I am happy to see Metropolitan Jonah is going where he can live and serve in peace. Many years to him.

                  • Thomas Mathes says

                    Helga, I was trying to be “cute” but it failed miserably. I was hoping to get a response from you explaining to me how Metropolitan Jonah was no longer the OCA Primate so that the OCA could release him to ROCOR. I do remember you and others making the claim that he was still primate. I could not see how that opinion was compatible with the recommendation of his release to the ROCOR I still don’t, but I’m dropping it. My poor attempt in this matter reinforces my belief that I am not meant to contribute to blogs but just read them.

                    P.S. I wish well to Metropolitan Jonah in ROCOR when all the t’s are crossed. I am not anti-Jonah or pro-Syosset. I never saw grounds for his deposition. The Synod should have given him a “golden parachute” when they requested his resignation instead of dragging out this controversy. But in spite of the mess surrounding the whole matter, I side with the rest of the churches who accepted his resignation and recognized Metropolitan Tikon as the current Primate. This has everything to do with Orthodox ecclesiology where reception by the other churches settles the matter.

                    • Thomas, why on earth would you want such a statement from me?

                    • Thomas, why didn’t you simply ask an honest question? It makes no sense unless your intent was not to simply acquire information, but to humiliate me while extracting the confession you wanted. Sorry, I am unable to oblige.

                • Daniel E Fall says

                  Lost faith = conspired?

                  I probably don’t deserve to say much on the matter and am really not wise to all the inside issues, but the insistence that Metropolitan Jonah was solely wronged is flat out false and very illogical. The Garklav’s matter for one should give you pause.

                  Some lunatics believe people are out to get them and that those people are evil, but we know the lunatic is the source of such belief and that generally people are good; even those that disagree with us. Well, most of us I guess.

                  The support of people suggesting evil people were out to get Jonah does not result in a logical lunatic label for the man, but it really has never helped him get away from such a stigma. And yet, there are those that wish to continue the drumbeat that Jonah was treated in a maligned fashion… and they can’t follow the lunacy logic above.

                  Those are the same people that say nothing about Garklav’s treatment and that it is acceptable because a bishop can do what he wishes. And from 1500 miles away, a mostly disinterested third party can see that a horrible injustice occurred. After all, assigning staff to investigate you has just a smidgeon of an inherent problem.. If staff does what’s right, they are doomed. If they sugar coat and yes man, we return to the prior days the next day, if you will. And you can’t see a problem here?

                  Metropolitan Jonah could have easily won the hearts of the people still in the OCA and lived out a doughboy dream(my apologies if this offends Helga….it is really meant to be endearing), but instead, he ended up going down a different road. I won’t suggest much, other than after all the problems with the spending issues and Russian fur hats, a quiet period was needed for the church, and that did not seem to be how things went.

                  Even a lousy guy like me expected Jonah to be that cabbage roll eating guy that went from church to church restoring faith. I had hoped to go hear him speak actually. All this noise in the church, combined with other factors, has made my interest in church essentially zero now. And Jonah gets some credit…sorry if you don’t like to hear it.

                  Instead, we heard about mishandled investigations, terminated Chancellors, more trips to Russia-this time without fur hats, and plans to move to Washington, and, “of course it was a political statement”. None of those issues alone was enough to warrant disgust, but et al, and against expectations; it became too much.

                  These are my perspectives, only meant to provide a picture of what I saw. They may be inaccurate, or even wrong, but this was the picture as I saw it painted. I know on this website people will cry foul and vote me negatively, but the days of bishops can do no wrong is gone-at least here in the good old US. And I think Bishop Moriak really proved that out in his own special way. No matter what his intent was with the relationship; it was wrong.

                  Jonah needs to be released; it is right and proper for all parties. Maybe then he can start a tour of churches or something.

                  • George Michalopulos says

                    You do the Kishkovskyite cause no honor by brandishing the name of Fr Garklavs to disparage His Beatitude. You forget that the then-Chancellor was actively undermining the Primate for which the entire Holy Synod of the OCA fired him.

                    • Sam Ting says


                      You have it WRONG! Garklavs was doing his job and + Jonah was running “roughshod” over him. Garklavs was trying to keep the integrity of the Office of the Primate while + Jonah was “unilaterally” making decisions without the Synod’s approval. In other words, Garklavs was trying to get + Jonah to follow the statutes of the OCA and + Jonah went rogue. Garklavs left when he saw that the other members of the Synod would not step up. Shortly thereafter, + Jonah was FIRED because he became a rogue bishop endangering the entire OCA!

                    • George Michalopulos says

                      Your rationale reminds me of what was heard during the Vietnam War: “we had to destroy that village to save it.” If the Lord grants me the days, I will laugh while we watch Lefty lead our bishops in chains across the Bosporus. And then all you erstwhile Stokovites who believed in autocephaly uber alles can eat ashes.

                    • The wonder is not that Garklavs was fired, but that he was not deposed.

                  • Archpriest Alexander F. C. Webster, PhD says

                    Re your introductory comment: “I probably don’t deserve to say much on the matter and am really not wise to all the inside issues, . . . ” Mr. Fall, you ought to have stopped there.

                    • Daniel E Fall says

                      Don’t think that because one is a priest or bishop or migs he is always the wisest one in the room Fr. Webster. Metropolitan Jonah would have done much better if an idiot like me in near zero standing were advising him, rather than Fr. Fester. (would have used the phone for starters, but like your comment on my post-that wouldn’t have been the substantive bit either)

                      It is hard to stomach for the Jonah gang that Metropolitan Jonah would have done better just going to church socials, but believe me; it would have been the best plan. And, he’d still be the Metropolitan and I might have had a different personal outcome-perhaps.

                      Do you suppose praying for our enemies in every Liturgy has us believing we have them? Most of us have no enemies other than the ones we imagine or contrive. Imagine contriving or creating enemies just to meet the prayer.. When I was a child, I wondered who they were, were they kids that were mean to me, or was it Russia? I was never certain. The leaked email had that in it. I think that was the part that really bothered me the most. You know who your enemies are…. Do you think I’m your enemy Fr. Webster? Far from… An enemy is someone that would want to bring you harm. Did people want to bring harm to Metropolitan Jonah or were they just not his fans sometimes? I attest he had no enemies-not one.

                      I will forgive you for not addressing any of the substantive bits of my post and I will also forgive you for not speaking to Thomas’ post that would keep Jonah in limbo forever.

                    • George Michalopulos says

                      Taking your advice, that Jonah be an avuncular go-along-to-get-along fellow is fine advise (up to a point) for a politcian or a gladhandler. Horrible advice for a bishop, at least on who takes his monastic tonsure seriously. For the record (and it is on the public record) Jonah bent over backwards to get along with men who meant him no good will from the start.

                      The problem Mr Fall is you think that Jonah’s detractors were acting in good faith. We now know that nothing could have been farther from the truth. They were out to get him from Day One. That’s been documented.

                      Better he had taken anybody else’s advice.

                      And no, the Synod did not have the authority to remove him the way they did. The Canons are very clear about conspiracies, even if you are not.

            • Sam Ting says


              You should re-read the Statutes of the OCA. The Synod of the OCA has the right to remove + Jonah as Primate. Now, a bishop is only a bishop if he is the bishop of something. What is + Jonah bishop of? He is in limbo; a state of retirement. + Jonah is still a rogue bishop and quite possibly, ROCOR may not really want him.

              • George Michalopulos says

                Quite possibly one of the most insane assessments of all the assessments I have read to date.

              • Nothing could be further from the truth, even Bishop Tikhon knows that’s not true, that’s how far from the truth what you’ve said is, Sam. For God’s sake, everyone who knows Metropolitan Jonah, Metropolitan Hilarion, Bishop George of Mayfield, and Fr. Victor Potapov..knows for a fact ROCOR has told him *and* the OCA they want him on board and are ready to receive him. Metropolitan Jonah is ready to be received and has been ready for a long time now. The OCA Synod has not released him yet despite everyone agreeing to their terms, why? Sadism is the only thing that makes sense to me because a release is beneficial to everyone!! So it seems to me the OCA just wants to keep inflicting pain..very Christian, no? And if you doubt me, contact any of the above men I have named, e-mail them, call their offices do whatever and they will confirm everything I have said is 100% accurate. How do I know? Because I’ve asked them in person and been there when things have been said! So either they are lying or you who doubt or say it’s not true can’t accept reality. Sorry to burst your collective bubbles..the OCA Holy Synod are the ones holding this up and God only knows why..sadism and stupidity is my honest assessment based on everything I know.

            • Guy Westover says

              Metropolitan Jonah is still Primate of the OCA in America. His resignation was made under duress and so null and void.

              So, Metropolitan Tikhon is an Anti-Primate? A novel idea! (By this I mean all this would make for a very dramatic literary novel.
              In Orthodoxy generally, and in America especially, “canonical” is ALWAYS relative. Right or wrong, matters of discipline and administration are canonical as long as the super-majority says so. As fond as I might personally be of His Beatitude Jonah, he resigned and is no longer Metropolitan of the OCA. Had he been more politically devious, he would have played more cooperatively with the other members of the Synod until he had built a base of support by having his own candidates raised to the episcopacy, or by collecting new dirt on the existing members.
              Time to move on, n’est pas?

  9. Bishop Tikhon Fitzgerald says

    I sense a general feeling of agreement in me with Father George’s note; however, I think he was uncharacteristically careless when he wrote that he found Johnny’s comment to be “spot on”, but in the very next sentence, said, “What i think he means….” Not so “spot on” after all, eh?

  10. George, why do you let Bishop Tikhon and others spread rumors and gossip as if it were true? You know full well Tikhon is wrong about much of what he says, just because he gets to wear a miter doesn’t mean he’s infallible..I mean the OCA has proved that a million times over.

  11. Fr. George Washburn says

    My tentative hypothesis is that the Thomas Mathes posts are not by a real person posting independently with that is his real name – the citations to long-posts by Helga and Collette as if they originated from Mt. Sinai, coupled with the lack of substantive argument based on Orthodox authority – just doesn’t ting true. Too cute and convenient a little bully pulpit to regycle the same old stuff…..

    But once before a year or two ago I had that same intuition and invited the person to contact me if he was real.
    He did and showed me I was mistaken, which I acknowledged it here. Same offer to Thomas, who is invited to write me at

    • The only argument you have to me is that it doesn’t ring true? Or that I sound like my pronouncements are from mt. Sinai? What kind of argument is that? Ya know, if you don’t know yourself why say anything at all? We’ll all find out eventually anyway.

      • Fr. George Washburn says

        I try not to discuss anything important with masked interlocutors.

        If you wanted to have a discussion with me about any serious matter of Orthodox doctrine, ecclesiology or whatever, you would come forward under your true name, throw down the gauntlet and we’d see if we could have a profitable exchange. Presumably there is nobody out there who would punish you or take your kids hostage just for having an exchange of views, or if there were you could manage to step up to the risk for the sake of the Cause we all claim to serve.

        Wouldn’t stop you one bit from keeping the pseudonyms next to the microwave to use for other purposes in other exchanges.

        inquisitively, suggestively,

        Fr. George

        • Archpriest Alexander F. C. Webster, PhD says

          Fr. George, the caterwauling on this message board over the anonymity of some of the other posters is beyond tiresome. I always post here under my full name, but I have no problem with those who, for whatever reason, choose a pseudonym. In this particular instance, you are way off base. “Colette” is well known among many of us and has, in fact, identified herself here. You might consider reading this message board with greater care and regularity instead of disparaging the host and the pseudonymous posters with annoying regularity.

          • Well said!
            What’s ironic about Fr.’s post is that because people do know who I am, I have been attacked on my personal email for stances I have taken here and elswhere.
            Initially I just used my first name because I didn’t want to involve my husband in some of the controversial things I was stating here, but then he surprised me by writing the Mother of all Letters to the bisops, which know one could dispute. But by then I thought people already know me by my first name here so why change it.
            So much for you trying to save yourself with all that Fr. G.

          • Bishop Tikhon Fitzgerald says

            Father Alexander, PHD—-“caterwauling?:” Father George has been caterwauling? I disagree, I take his messages to be well written and balanced without any hint of the emotion one might associate with “caterwauling.’ Didn’t you have anything substantial with which to differ with FAther George?

            Or do you have some other quarrel with your Antiochene brother Priest? Is he not backing the right candidate to replace ever-memorable Metropolitan Philip perhaps? I can’t imagine any rational basis for your outburst.
            And when does Father George’s regularity become annoying to you? Do you have a greater sensitivity than the rest of us?

        • Lola J. Lee Beno says

          I’m going to be seeing “Colette” tonight. I’ll check to see where she’s hidden her mask. Maybe it is somewhere downstairs in the basement.

          • Dan Fall says

            Will Helga be there?

            Give Fr. W a break. The anonymous posters generally embark on a level of nastiness a named person would not. That is not to say Colette was nasty. We saw anonymity lead to meanness on the other guys blog as well.

            He was a bit off this time.

            I think he has spent more time than many offering very thoughtful perspectives.

            Now hit that negative button to anonymously cast me in the light you choose.

            • I’d love it if she was.

              Look, for some it really bothers them that people don’t want to use their names. Most don’t care and understand this is to PROTECT either their jobs and/ or family. That is reasonable. I understand this in the negative, except what can you or anyone else do to me except bully me here. You can not bully people into doing what you want them to do and that is what Fr . George is trying to do as well as a few others here. He went off topic anyway as a way of not letting me ‘beat’ him in an argument with this topic in the first place.
              We KNOW you don’t like when people don’t use their name, but that is not going to change by nasty tactics.

              • Daniel E Fall says

                I wasn’t the least bit nasty. I made a wisecrack to Lola about Helga, but it was only meant to be ‘cute’. If Helga had used his real name; it wouldn’t have ever come up, but Fr. Washburn and me get credit for nasty tactics? Something is amiss here.

                Yes, I find anonymous Orthodox blog posters are generally not meeting the Teachings of the Church as I learned them. i.e. St. Ephraim’s prayer…

                Humility-why bother if you are anonymous?-ain’t saying you can’t be, but it isn’t as great a requirement

                Idle talk-fewer people will take you seriously if you are anonymous, so again why bother?

                Chastity-Mathes pointed out some obvious integrity problems with some things an anonymous poster has said (and this truth will get me voted in the negative again – so be it).

                Over the past years, I’ve seen way too many nasty things said by anonymous posters, and I don’t respect most of them much.

                • I didn’t say you were nasty-with that post anyway.

                  Why be humble? Because those of us who understand the faith -which includes St. Ephraim’s prayer- know we are subject to God, not man. He is watching us and the devil is playing with us.

                  Idle talk?? I don’t know -you use your name and contribute a lot of idle talk here so . . .. Since I don’t know you your name might just as well be Whinny the Poo to me-what difference would it make. When I have met people on this blog not knowing it-they fess up and say-“I’m so and so on Monomakhos. . . ” There really is not much hiding once you meet face to face. On a blog really what dif does it make.

                  Look if I met you face to face we would have a different relationship. I don’t like nastiness- you don’t like it either, so let’s just not be nasty with each other. But keep in mind a joke or a smart remark may or may not work here. It’s better to let it go or not take it personally and give your brother or sister grace.

            • Lola J. Lee Beno says

              I’ve met Helga in person. Unfortunately, we do not yet have Star Trek-style teleportation, so she was unable to make an appearance last night.

        • Of course Colette is a real person. She and her husband are amazing and very gracious people. Please, Fr. George, give it a rest.

        • Michael Bauman says

          How do I know that the person who calls himself Fr. George Washburn on this blog is really Fr. George Washburn. Maybe it is someone out to make trouble for the real Fr. George?

          That fact is, that no one in any form of stranger communication knows if the person with whom they are attempting to communicate is really who they say they are no matter how much information one is given.

          It is quite usual to judge the quality of the person, the veracity, etc by listening to the content of what they say and how they act. NOT by demanding that they identify beyond a shadow of a doubt who they really are(an impossibility anyway).

          Now, there is a Michael Bauman who is a parishioner at St. George, Wichita, KS. That is relatively easy to verify. However, there is no easy way to verify that the person writing these words under the name of Michael Bauman is the one who is a parishioner at St. George, Wichita, Ks, etc, etc. Shoot, not long ago someone mistook me for the Protestant professor and writer, Dr. Michael Bauman. He has, in the distant past, been mistaken for me when we posted on the same blog. An honor for me, not so much for him.

          To my knowledge, I’ve only actual met a couple of folks who post here: two of them post under pseudonyms. I know both to be kind, gentle, intelligent and faithful Orthodox. In fact, I would listen to anything either one of them had to say before I would listen to me.

          The choices as I see them: 1. continue to insist on full disclosure of identity as a way to hijack and not engage the substance of the statements; 2. Stop visiting and posting; 3. Consider and reply to the content of the messages as moved by faith, logic, passion or whatever irresistible force keeps you coming back.

          A word to Thomas Mathes: humor, especially sarcasm, does not work well in this medium unless it is very, very well done and very well constructed. That is, in part, because such humor relies on a long of cues other than the words themselves to be effective such as body language, tone of voice, infection, situation, knowledge of the person, etc. I have found that sarcasm is a destructive tool best used with great discretion in any case. It can be used to attack and tear down anything and anyone.

          • Oh ha! I just wrote on this-but you say it much better. Thank you.

          • Tim R. Mortiss says

            Not precisely comme il faut,
            To practice frank polygamy;
            I might have practiced, even so.
            But Tim R. Mortiss disturgled me.

            Tim R. Mortiss, Tim R. Mortiss,
            He’s a loving friend.
            He holds my hand while I’m asleep,
            He guides me on my four-day creep,
            He’s with me to the end.


      • Bishop Tikhon Fitzgerald says

        Collette, you really wrote this: “The only argument you have to me is that it doesn’t ring true? Or that I sound like my pronouncements are from mt. Sinai?”
        When and where did Father George or anyone else ever say his “only argument” with you is that what you write does not ring true with him?

        • That’s the only argument he stated in response to that post. So yep, I surely did state that.

          • Bishop Tikhon Fitzgerald says

            Collette, can’t you see the difference between “the only argument he has with you,” and ‘the only argument he STATED? If you can’t see the difference I don’t think it’s possible to have a rational discussion here.

            • I think you are right about not having a rational discussion. . .
              of course I’m going to comment on what he stated rather than try to figure out all of what he has a problem with. What’s odd is that you couldn’t figure that out.
              No more needs to be said here.

    • Thomas Mathes says

      Fr. George, Thomas Mathes is my real name. I am sorry that I am such a poor blogger. I did not expect you and Bishop Tikon to respond as you did to my first statement. I was trying to be funny, and failed miserably. My initial hope was that I might elicit a response from Helga or George explaining how Metropolitan Jonah was no longer the OCA Primate so that the OCA could release him to ROCOR. That too failed.

      I thought that my next statement to you and Bishop Tikon would make clear that I was arguing in a way “too silly to take seriously” but that obviously failed. Still I held the irrational hope that I might finally evoke a response from Helga conceding that Metropolitan Jonah was no longer OCA Primate and informing us when that happened. No such luck.

      P.S. I agree with your comments about the authority of bishops not being lost by simple allegations. I was, of course, citing the Sons of Job whose article was flawed from beginning to end. I also agree with your comments and those of Bishop Tikon on the resignation of Metropolitan Jonah. My agreement in these matters reflects nothing of an anti-Jonah or pro-Syosset attitude. I have never argued for Metropolitan Jonah’s removal. Your comments were simply reasonable.

      • Daniel E Fall says

        In my opinion, you went too far and crossed the line from sarcasm to nasty. But you got me. Before you admitted sarcasm, I’m pretty sure your vote totals were much higher than the plus one this am. I suppose that got me believing others enjoyed it as real.

        What bugs me is you are winning in the voting contest more than me with all of your posts, even though I found the original nasty.

        That is saying something; I’m not sure just what… I wonder if or how Helga voted..

        Still no announcement on I wonder how many years it must go on….

        • Fr. George Washburn says

          Thanks to Mr. Mathes for his clarifications and admissions, which I appreciate and accept with a smile and “internet handshake.” I have indeed misunderstood him on this, and it would seem many of the “thumzuppers” have too.

          As to the erudite Very Rev. Alexander F. C. Webster PhD’s use of the term “caterwauling” I would like to invite him to define the term as he uses it, compare it to the dictionary definition and then illustrate the validity of his use of the term by citation to what I wrote. I believe what he was actually doing was misusing the term because he disagrees with my criticism of anonymity as normal practice.

          I would also like to invite him to tell us based on his long military, academic and pastoral experience whether people as a rule tend to be kinder and more accurate in what they say about others a) when they are speaking behind someone’s back or b) in full view and hearing of those about whom they speak.

          As to Colette’s defense of partial anonymity I can only say that her choice to remain unidentified to most of us is one way to solve the equation, but not the best one.

          • Ohhhhh B-R-O-T-H-E-R!

          • Archpriest Alexander F. C. Webster, PhD says

            I refer the Right Honorable Gentleman to Helga’s previous remark:

            “Please, Fr. George, give it a rest.”

            • Fr. George Washburn says

              There’s Fr. Alexander responding with avoidance and obfuscation again to a question he dares not face and answer honestly.

              • Archpriest Alexander F. C. Webster, PhD says

                “There you go again,” Fr. George, caterwauling to your anti-pseudonymous posse, insulting my integrity and challenging my courage in the third person. I’ll have no more of this cat fight. 😉

  12. M. Stankovich says

    Le roi est mort, vive le roi! Where but in the disturbed world of the anonymous fringe, years now after his resignation, can this lunacy continue with a straight face. Years after Jonah Paufhausen stood before the 16th All-American Council and said:

    I admit that I have very little experience of administration and it was a risk for the 2008 Council to elect me, the newest and most inexperienced of bishops. I have worked very hard to fulfill your expectations. But this is not an excuse.

    I thought we had a good working relationship but obviously there is something very broken. I need to regain the confidence of my brother bishops and of many others in leadership positions in our Church. I tell you all here and now that I am deeply sorry for that and I ask your forgiveness.

    These three years have been an administrative disaster. And I need to accept full responsibility for that and for my part in it.

    How to get to the root of this breakdown in trust and repair it, if possible, is the real challenge for me and I am willing to do whatever is necessary, working in close collaboration with the Holy Synod. As a first step I have agreed to begin a process of discernment that will include a complete evaluation in a program that specializes in assisting clergy, starting the week of November 14th. I have chosen to do this out of love for you, the people of the Church, and for my brother bishops.

    But the jackass conspirati claim, “He was coerced. They put those words in his speech and told him to say them or he was out!” Hmm… And there was not a single ally, nor a patron, nor his own memory to save him from his own oath taken at The Service for the Election of a Bishop: “And herewith I promise also to do nothing through constraint, whether coerced by powerful persons, or by a multitude of the people, even though they should command me, under pain of death, to do something contrary to divine and holy laws.” When it rains, it pours.

    But the most outrageous aspect of this entire foolishness is that Met. Jonah Paufhausen says not a word. He allows lunatics and jackasses to fawne over him, flatter him with allusions of sanctity that would embarrass the saints, and makes no effort to terminate this unending National Enquirer-style gossip (which itself is interpreted of “long-suffering). I have offered to help on a number of occasions, and if Matthew is “very close” to him and carrying messages, my offer is still open. It would, however, involve some courage.

    • Dan Fall says

      This is a reply to George for lack of thread depth.

      A leader needs to understand the needs of the group he leads. If they need a period of quiet after turmoil; it is not timely to invite the drama of ‘culture wars’, or moves to new cities, for a couple.

      And the smpac report that so infuriated Jonah was simply meant to address those shove under a rug issues so many churches dealt with poorly.

      My take on it was there was a huge conflict of interest and Garklavs and JP failed to recognize it. Your take is that Garklavs was out to get Jonah…corrections welcome.

      And Stanko has said much….

      The OCA needs to release the man.

    • I would rather swallow glass than put you or anything you have to say near Metropolitan Jonah.

    • Yeah, that’s right. +Jonah’s not much of a game player. . . and seeing how “reports” and “letters” conflicted with each other written by the bishops, it’s hard to take any of it seriously. Also seeing how the Legacy crew has distanced themselves from Stankovich I don’t think anyone is “using him” at this point.

      • Bishop Tikhon Fitzgerald says

        If I were a liability, I’d adopt a name of the ‘Anonymous-By-Necessity’ genre.

        “You can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear,” they say. That’s correct: not even by pointing out accurately and factually just how the sow’s ear was mistreated. I think that is pretty much what M. Stankovich and others have tried to get across about Metropolitan Jonah.
        I think many in the OCA Synod and the rest of the leadership/establishment of the OCA were mainly just outraged and frustrated at the result of their electing a tyro, a novice, with little if any administrative competence, to fill an essentially administrative position, and, rather than address their own mistake and failures, they hysterically and ineptly took out their frustration on THEIR CREATURE.
        I think it’s an utter waste of time and spirit to go on pointing fingers. This blog has become a kind of Chicken-Little as Hydra. Not only is the sky falling, but the OCA and the GOA are collapsing in iniquity and crimes of violence and sexual depravity which mean that Orthodoxy in America will never get out of Junior High!

      • Dan Fall says

        Jonah’s not a game player, but Helga seems to be doing her share of schauspielen. Mr Mathes has surely shined a bright light on that.

        And Fr Washburn is horrible for taking a stand against anonymity?

        Perhaps if Helga had obliged the lower ranking Washburn-this thread wouldn’t have happened and the nastiness of Mathes wouldn’t had had the opening.

        Don’t think that Helga’s anonymity is not a deep rooted source of all the caterwauling friends.

        And its Winnie the Pooh damnit…get it right.

        • What-did I turn Winney the pooh into a horse?

        • No, Dan, George clearly has grounds for posting what he did, and Fr. George should not have accused him of spreading rumor.

    • M. Stankovich says

      All I’ve been doing of late is statistical analysis of hemisphere latilarity in mental illness and writing about sex offenders. Writing, writing, writing. It is unimaginable to me to move from the “real world” to this nonsense.

      colette, while we have disagreed on many things, I have always had respect for you; as a seminary graduate, from what I’ve read, as an artist, as a mother, as an intelligent person. If you honestly believe I would ever engage in “nefarious actions” that would violate and compromise both my personal & professional ethics as this jackass Anonymous by Necessity claims, you would be wrong and it is a despicable accusation to make. From my first post here and anywhere, I stand by my integrity. I am truly saddened to see you dialog with this rodent using my name.

      • You had me at . . . . person, but then you lost me. I hope you would not engage in nefarious actions, but you have said some terrible things. . . . What does your last line mean?

  13. Bishop Tikhon Fitzgerald says

    Good one, M. Stankovich! The name of this game is “A Banquet of Rationalizations Salt and Peppered with Denial.”

    • Good when it suits your purposes, bad when it doesn’t. You are so transparent and you think no one knows. You have brought nothing but shame to yourself and your episcopacy since you retired.

      • Bishop Tikhon Fitzgerald says

        I know, “Matthew,” I know… oh, by the way, there is a life outside of me and my postings here. Why not try it?

    • Wow if that doesn’t swing both ways!!