Happy St Bartholomew’s Day: Part Deux

You got to give it to Archbishop Elpidophoros and the GOA.  Instead of retreating a little bit whenever they make a mistake, they double down.

Rather than reiterate the litany of scandals that have attended the career of His Eminence since he alighted on our shores, I’d like to concentrate on one in particular.  Specifically, the Divine Liturgy he celebrated two years ago on St Bartholomew’s Day.

In case you may not remember, this was held at St Bartholomew’s church in Manhattan, a very large and well-established Episcopalian church.

Ordinarily, this would have been seen as a gracious outreach by the Episcopalians to the Orthodox.  It would have, in a saner time.  But we don’t live in sane times, do we?

No, now we live in an age of Rainbow Marxism, and the homosexualist tyranny has the Episcopalians firmly within their grip.  How firmly?  All one has to do is look at all of the gay “pride” paraphernalia that has festooned this magnificent edifice (as well as all other ECUSA churches throughout America) to know which way the wind is blowing.  

Personally, I didn’t think that the GOA would make the same mistake twice.  But I realized how wrong I was then I received the following invitation from one our of correspondents on the East Coast:

What struck me was the fact that only a “Great Vespers” was going to be served on the 10th, the eve of St Bartholomew’s day.  I thought that perhaps this was a way for the archbishop to “lay low” so to speak.  To honor the patronal feast day of Patriarch Bartholomew but not in a grandiose way.

But then I looked at the calendar and saw that June 11 was a Sunday.  Had it fallen on a Saturday or Monday, there is no doubt that a full-blown hierarchical liturgy would have been served on that particular Episcopalian altar.  

So, either the brainiacs on 79th Street have a tin ear and can’t learn from their mistakes or they have no intention on backing down.  In other words, it’s “damn the torpedoes and full speed ahead!” as far as they’re concerned.

Either way, it’s not a good look as far as the other Orthodox jurisdictions are concerned.  I imagine that it’s going to harden the resolve of the non-GOA eparchies to further distance themselves from the hegemonic designs of the GOA.

At any rate, more and more of us are on to them.  Some of our contributors have published their own observations about the current drift of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, among them Lawrence Wheeler, Hilber Nelson and Nick Stamatakis.  Please take the time to read the very fine essays which these men have written:





  1. These are Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s words. The entire quote is “Silence in the face of evil is itself evil: God will not hold us guiltless. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act.”

  2. Katherine says

    The Episcopalian “alter” at which these Bishops perform services is THE PROBLEM. The bishops who perform such services as well as the Orthodox laity who communed there are heretics and have repudiated The Church. Festooning a pagan altar with gay flags is irrelevant in the face of what these people have done.

  3. Sorry to be a pain-in-the-butt pedant, but I think the title should read “Part Deux” instead of “Part Dieux.” Sorry…. it’s the Francophone in me.

    Deux = two
    Dieu = God; Dieux = plural “dieu,” i.e., Gods or deities

    Maybe if you’re referring to the bizarre deities that inhabit Patriarch B, then it’s OK?

    As an aside, today (May 29/June 11) is the Saint’s day of the Holy Hierarch St Luke the Blessed Surgeon of Crimea…. a modern saint who is much beloved by millions of Orthodox, including millions of Greek Orthodox Christians.

  4. Joseph Lipper says

    The rainbow is first seen as depicted in the book of Genesis as a brilliant and majestic sign of God’s mercy and His covenant with every living thing on Earth. Father Seraphim Rose points out that a vapor canopy previously above the atmosphere would have filtered the sun’s rays in such a way that people before the Great Flood wouldn’t have seen rainbows. Those who emerged from Noah’s Ark would have first witnessed this new wonder, the brilliant multi-colored rainbow formed like a giant banner in the sky.

    We read about the rainbow in the prophet Ezekiel’s vision of Jesus Christ having “the appearance of the rainbow that is in the cloud”. In the vision of St. John’s Apocalypse, Christ is also depicted as being on His throne surrounded by a rainbow. So the rainbow is really a sign and symbol closely associated with Jesus Christ.

    It is therefore really quite wrong, even blasphemous, that today the rainbow is so often misappropriated as a sign and symbol of political ideology. Now is the time for Christians, and particularly Orthodox Christians, to lead the way in taking back the rainbow. Orthodox Christians can lead the way by fully rejecting the political ideology that is often misappropriated to rainbows, and instead fully embrace the truth of God’s covenant that the rainbow actually represents. We are God’s true rainbow people. A visible rainbow flag or banner, button or T-shirt, is really just an excellent opportunity to share about the love of Jesus Christ.

    Christians of other confessions have already started “taking back the rainbow”, but now it is high time for Orthodox Christians to own the rainbow and start proudly displaying their rainbow flags, buttons and T-shirts as a witness to Jesus Christ.




    • It’s our duty as Christian American citizens born or sworn into liberty by the natural rights of God, our Constitution, Bill o Rights, and Declaration of Independence to use righteous resistance against pastors that do nothing to stop the transgender apostasy woke agenda of the Marxists trying to take down this nation. We are not Christians in China or Greece or Saudi Arabia or North Korea. How ignorant are those American Christian citizens that do nothing to preserve liberty for the next generation

      • Hilber Nelson says

        Well said, Jane: “It’s our duty as Christians born or sworn into liberty … to use righteous resistance against pastors that do nothing …” My letter, “An Open Letter to Our Shepherds” posted in Orthodox Reflections, is a plea to our priests and hierarchs to call the faithful to courageously take action to preserve our faith and liberty. If that means openly calling them out for capitulating to the Rainbow Religion, then so be it. It then falls to the laity to persevere. Feel free to send copies or links of my letter as you feel led. Thanks.

      • Antiochene Son says

        Eh, the constitution was put in place by proto-globalists in an illegal coup. It prevents nothing that is happening today.

        I recognize it’s the law, but I bear no personal allegiance to it or the gay state apparatus.

  5. I agree and would that it were so. But that’s not what’s going on – and will go on – at St. Bartholomew’s, and the entire world knows it.

    A feast day can easily and properly be celebrated in an Orthodox temple by any name. This is nothing but a mockery.

    • Righteous resistance: Do not attend that church.

      • Joseph Lipper says

        Reminds me of the joke about the shipwrecked Orthodox Christian alone on a deserted island. He felt compelled to build two chapels: the one that he would go to, and the other one that he would not go to.

    • Joseph Lipper says

      Brian, this wasn’t Episcopalians holding a service in an Orthodox altar and temple though. I could see how that would be troubling, but it was the other way around. It was Orthodox Christians holding a service in an Episcopalian church.

      I wish all Episcopalian churches would allow Orthodox Christians to hold services. That would be great. I know many converts who came into Orthodoxy through Saturday-only missions allowed by the graciousness of Episcopal churches providing the space.

      • George P. says

        As Orthodox Christians we are not permitted to do as we wish because we think it popular and a good idea.

        Canon LXV of the Holy Apostles:
        “If any clergymen, or laymen, enter a synagogue of Jews, or of heretics, to pray, let him be both deposed and excommunicated.”

        Interpretation by Saint Nikodemos
        The present Canon reckons it a great sin for a Christian to enter a synagogue of Jews or of heretics in order to pray. “For what portion hath a believer with an infidel?” (II Cor. 6:15), according to the divine Apostle. For if the Jews themselves are violating the Law by going into their synagogues and offering sacrifices, in view of the fact that the offering of sacrifices anywhere outside of Jerusalem is forbidden, according to the Law (as is attested by divine St. Justin in his dialogue with Tryphon, and by Sozomenus in his Ecclesiastical History, Book 5, ch. 21, and by St. Chrysostom in his second discourse against the Jews), how much more is not that Christian violating the law who prays along with the crucifiers of Christ? Moreover, it is also to be emphasized that any church of heretics, or any religious meeting of theirs, ought not to be honored or attended, but rather ought to be despised and rejected, on the ground that they believe things contrary to the beliefs of Orthodox Christians. Hence it is that the present Canon ordains that if any clergyman or layman enters the synagogue of the Jews or that of heretics for the sake of prayer, the clergyman shall be deposed from office and at the same time be excommunicated on the ground that he has committed a great sin, but as for the layman he is to be excommunicated only, since, inasmuch as he is a layman, he has sinned to a less degree than has the clergyman, in so doing, and because as a layman he is not liable to deposition and cannot therefore be deposed. Or, to speak more correctly, as others interpret the matter, the clergyman that enters a synagogue of Jews or heretics to pray shall be deposed from office, while any layman that does the same thing shall be excommunicated. Read also the interpretation of Ap. c. VII and that of Ap. c. XLV.

        • Joseph Lipper says

          George P., you got it backwards. The canon you provide would forbid Orthodox Christians from praying at an Episcopal Liturgy, but it wouldn’t forbid Episcopalians from praying with us at an Orthodox Liturgy. I think most of us here have had Episcopalians join us for prayer at our Orthodox missions and churches, and some of these Episcopalians have even later converted.

          It also wouldn’t forbid Orthodox Christians from using the space of an Episcopalian church for services. In a sense, doing so is just righting the wrongness of the Episcopalians.

          Here’s an example: St. Herman’s Orthodox Church in Stafford, Virginia.

          From their website:

          “We have worshipped at our current location, the historic Clifton Chapel in Stafford, Virginia, since January 1, 2005. At first, we had access to the property only for Saturday Vespers, but one month later Aquia [Episcopal] church granted us full-time use of the chapel and grounds. We celebrated our first Divine Liturgy in our long-standing home on February 13, 2005 (Zacchaeus Sunday).”


          • I wonder if the Episcopalians realized we were “righting their wrongness” in their place of worship which we hijacked for our purposes. If that church didn’t have the name St Bartholomew, Elpi wouldn’t have bothered to even stop in to say hello.

          • George P. says

            Mr. Lipper, I encourage you to visit and stay for some time, if possible, at one of the monasteries founded by Geronda Ephraim here in America or to visit Mount Athos. There you will be able to develop close relationships with those who adhere to the Holy Traditions of our faith and this experience will benefit you very much along your Orthodox journey. Unworthy as I am, you will be in my prayers dear brother in Christ.

            • Joseph Lipper says

              George P., thank you for your prayers. Yes, I have visited some of these monasteries, including St. Nektarios Monastery in New York.

              Upon entering St. Nektarios Monastery, I was greeted by prominently displayed photographs of their bishop, Archbishop Elpidophoros and also Patriarch Bartholomew. I never heard anything bad said about either bishop while visiting. I believe that is the monastic way, not to criticize one’s bishop. Sometimes there might be a temptation to do so, but it is better to simply say that one doesn’t understand rather than criticize.

          • Katherine says

            Actually, only Orthodox Christians and catechumens are permitted to attend The Divine Liturgy. The catechumens must depart before the Liturgy of The Faithful. Ya know, its right there in the words of the service. So, yeah, Anglicans ARE forbidden from praying with ‘us’ at Divine Liturgy. But I guess St John Chrysostum was just a hateful, exclusionary bigot.

  6. This is the pan-heresy of ecumenism running rampant. But it’s obvious now this heresy is also a political heresy. The entire concept of “unity” as espoused by the modern western world would have been an abhorrence to all the prophets of the OT and apostles. It’s amazing how the Orthodox church has adopted the ecumenist protestant mindset that “we all have Jesus and it’s all we need”, dogmas and rituals be damned!. Is there a priest, monk or bishop on this forum to please tell me as to what has changed for Orthodoxy to have adopted the protestant invisible church theory? I’ll answer, it’s called politics. The ecumenists disparage the Church Father’s for allowing a schism which they view as historical and politically based, but their reason for unity is all political. It is their reasoning and their want of unity which is politically based.
    Has the pope anathemized papal supremacy and papal infallibility? Has he discarded and anathemized the Immaculate Conception Dogma?Has he discarded the Fillioque from the Creed and the extremely perverted explanation that proceeds means to “send” in Latin? Has he declared that purgatory is incompatible with eastern christianitys vision of the afterlife or do the Latins still parrot the same nonsense that EO believe the same thing but are too stupid and arrogant to realize it?
    Have the Anglicans anathemized practicing openly homosexuals and women in their clergy? And what explanation do the Anglicans give for not reconciling with Rome and anathemizing and deposing their immoral king that created the schism???? After Henry’s death why did they not go back to Rome? After centuries why are the Anglican not anathemizing this Henry king and re-enter the door they left from?
    The rush to embrace is a political power grab not based on sound Christological beliefs, as can be seen from last weekends ecumenist talks at Alexandria, where the only concern was how power is divided up
    amongst bishops in the last centuries instead of acknowledging the Roman empire that INVENTED the Patriarchates
    Is now defunct.

    • Joseph Lipper says

      I can’t really blame protestants for not “going back to Rome” though. Roman Catholicism needs to drop the Vatican-only model. It is a major weakness.

      If Rome had not separated from the Orthodox Church, then we would likely have many countries in Europe with their own autocephalous Orthodox churches today. Protestantism was often just the available method for self-creating an ecclesial autocephaly given the political circumstances of the time. The Protestant intention of autocephaly is not bad, but whereas Orthodox autocephaly is a mechanism that properly maintains the unity of the church, Protestantism only further divides.

      Nonetheless, in this day and age of modern communications, Christians of different confessions should be talking to each other, finding out each other’s beliefs, needs and concerns. Unity won’t come through these ecumenical programs, but it is a starting point of communication. God in His Power and Glory will do the rest.

      • Katherine says

        You miss the point, Joseph. The Church is united. There are no Christians of different confessions. There is only one confession: the Orthodox one. I don’t need to discuss the filioque with a Roman Catholic other than telling him it is a heresy. His need is to denounce it.

        • Joseph Lipper says

          Katherine, other Christian confessions would refer to those who are not part of the one Church, but who still confess that Jesus Christ is God.

          • Katherine says

            Confessing that Jesus Christ is God means nothing. Do not the demons believe that and tremble? Shall we talk to the demons because of their confession that Jesus Christ is God? No… didn’t think so. Satan knows Christ is God, having knelt at his throne.
            Joseph, if you love people then tell them the truth. Roman Catholics and Protestants are heretics and are anathema. Their confession is unavailing. There is no salvation outside The Church.

            • “Joseph, if you love people then tell them the truth.”


            • Joseph Lipper says


              The confession of the demons is that Jesus is accursed. That’s why they tremble. It’s not a Christian confession.

              They shouted to Him, “What have we to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God? art thou come hither to torment us before the time?”

              I wouldn’t go so far to say that anyone outside of the One Church who confesses Christ as God is making a demonic confession like that. How could you possibly support that idea?

              • Katherine’s point is that even the demons know God. The demons were trembling because they knew He was standing in front of them! They were afraid He was there to send them to the abyss!

                Katherine never said that people outside the Church who confess Christ as God are making a “demonic confession.” You have twisted her words to make a point she never intended to make.

                There is but One True Church . . . and then there is every other confession. That’s Orthodoxy 101.

                The only thing I would quibble with is saying there is no salvation outside the Church. We don’t know that. We know where God is (in the Church), but we don’t know where God is not.

                Metropolitan Kallistos Ware. . .

                “Orthodoxy also teaches that outside the Church there is no salvation. This belief has the same basis as the Orthodox belief in the unbreakable unity of the Church: it follows from the close relation between God and His Church. ‘A man cannot have God as his Father if he does not have the Church as his Mother’ (On the Unity of the Catholic Church, 6). So wrote Saint Cyprian; and to him this seemed an evident truth, because he could not think of God and the Church apart from one another. God is salvation, and God’s saving power is mediated to man in His Body, the Church. ‘Extra Ecclesiam nulla salus. All the categorical strength and point of this aphorism lies in its tautology. Outside the Church there is no salvation, because salvation is the Church’ (G. Florovsky, ‘Sobornost: the Catholicity of the Church,’ in The Church of God, p. 53). Does it therefore follow that anyone who is not visibly within the Church is necessarily damned? Of course not; still less does it follow that everyone who is visibly within the Church is necessarily saved. As Augustine wisely remarked: ‘How many sheep there are without, how many wolves within!’ (Homilies on John, 45, 12) While there is no division between a ‘visible’ and an ‘invisible Church,’ yet there may be members of the Church who are not visibly such, but whose membership is known to God alone. If anyone is saved, he must in some sense be a member of the Church; in what sense, we cannot always say (On this question, see pp. 315-317).” http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:oS04h6y88qMJ:readeralexey.narod.ru/ENGLISH/Ware12.html&cd=16&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us

                • Joseph Lipper says

                  Gail, there are many Christians who confess Christ as God, but who are not part of the Orthodox Church. This is what is meant by different Christian confessions.

                  Do we believe that Protestants and Roman Catholic are Christians? How about the Non-Chalcedonian Oriental Orthodox? Sure, these are all in heresy and outside of the One Church, but they are still Christians.

                  • I think you are reading things into this discussion that are not there.

                    Who said there are not Christians outside the Church who confess Christ as God? Of course there are and the canons address this: They forbid us to participate in non-Orthodox religious services and to engage in common prayer with non-Orthodox and with those who have been officially condemned as heretics by the Orthodox Church.

                    Heresy means wrong teaching. It doesn’t mean non-Christian.

                    • Joseph Lipper says

                      Gail, I was responding to Katherine’s comment above that “there are no Christians of different confessions.”

                      Perhaps I misunderstood her. I was just trying to understand what she meant.

                    • Within the Orthodox Church, “There are no Christians of different confessions.”

                    • ROCOR Layman says

                      “No salvation outside the Church” is Orthodox, patristic teaching. Kallistos Ware is talking nonsense. As the Lord Himself says, “Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved.” That’s membership in the Church, not some nebulous “we’re not sure who and where.”

                      Katherine’s comment was correct; no qualifiers needed.

                    • I guess you’d also have to take that up with St Ignatius as that’s this idea originated.

              • Joseph: “The confession of the demons is that Jesus is accursed”

                No, Joseph.
                The confession of the demons is that they are accursed;
                They merely object to being tormented “before the time”.

                • Joseph Lipper says

                  Brendan, it’s both. The demons are accursed, but they curse God back.

                  So when the Apostle John writes:

                  “Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God.” (1 John 4:15)

                  He is not referring to a blasphemous confession of demons.

                  • Saying the demons know God is not a blasphemous confession. It’s simply true.

                    • Joseph Lipper says

                      Gail, the demon’s confession was, “what have we to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God?”. The phrase “what have we to do with thee” is considered an angry curse here as it signifies the demon’s disdain for Jesus’ presence. This is a common Jewish saying from the Old Testament. If, for example, a father says to his son, or a son says to his father, “what have we to do with thee”, it is considered like a curse of separation. Their acknowledgement of “Jesus, thou Son of God” is blasphemous because it is more like sarcasm. They want Jesus to leave. As for the trembling of the demons, this is also a sign of their angry rage.

                    • I’m going to let one of our monastics or priests answer you, if they care to.

                    • Galinushka,

                      You and George really need to understand that the trolls are here only to waste your time. I understand your convictions regarding freedom of speech, but the tactic is that if they post some contrived nonsense then they assume someone will take the time to refute or argue with them, thus detracting from other positive endeavors.

                      This is why I rarely, if ever, respond to them directly. You all are in a better position. You don’t actually have to post their comments at all.

                    • As George often tells me, the trolls serve a purpose. They give us an opportunity to say what we might otherwise not have the opportunity to express.

                    • Jeff Moss says


                      The expression “What have we/I to do with you?” is a fairly neutral expression of distance—I would compare it to saying, “We are not on the same page.”

                      Notice that this expression in the demons’ question to Christ—”What have we to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God?” (Matthew 8:29, τί ἡμῖν καὶ σοί, Ἰησοῦ υἱὲ τοῦ Θεοῦ;)—is grammatically identical to the Lord’s question to his Mother at the Cana wedding feast: “Woman, what have I to do with thee? mine hour is not yet come” (John 2:4, τί ἐμοὶ καὶ σοί, γύναι; …).

                      Christ was not cursing his Mother—God forbid! Rather, he was warning her that his time had not yet come. And yet, in deference to her love and faith, he went ahead and performed his first miracle at her request.

                    • Joseph Lipper says

                      Thanks, Jeff, that’s a fair point. Perhaps it’s just a matter of context or how phrases are used.

                      However, I don’t think the demons are being little angels either when they confess that Jesus is the Son of God.

                    • What we “think” is irrelevant. What matters is what the Church has always taught: The demons recognized Jesus as the Son of God and were trembling because they thought he was there to send them to the abyss, though it was not yet time. No one said anything about them being “little angels!” Maybe we could ask that you stop editorializing at least on Scripture.

                    • Joseph Lipper says

                      Gail, if you read Blessed Theophylact’s Explanation of the Gospel of St. Matthew (published in English by ROCOR), he writes “Behold, they [the demons] proclaim Him to be the Son of God, but first they declare their enmity.” So, that’s how a Church father interprets the phrase “What have we to do with Thee” in that particular context.

                    • The way it’s explained is “the demons consider it torment from being prevented from hurting men.”

                    • Joseph Lipper says

                      Blessed Theophylact’s (Orthodox) commentary on Gospel of St. Matthew, chapter 8, vs 29

                      “Behold, they proclaim Him to be the Son of God, but first they declare their enmity.”


                    • Yeah, I’m sure there was some of that. They hate God and they hate man so seeing the “God Man” standing in front of them probably set off writhing and gnashing teeth. LOL

                  • Joseph: “The demons…curse God back”


    • As a former Anglican, I think that people who throw stones at the people in England who lived and died 500 plus years ago ought to read the history of the times; both theologically and politically before they comment.

      Suffice it to say that there were a lot of people in different countries who began to read the Bible and discover that Rome was off track and they decided to do something about it.
      The invention of the printing press changed everything.

      We could look at the situation today and wonder why with so many Bibles in different translations in English our understanding of the coming of Jesus The Savior, The Anointed One, is still skewed.

      Would Paul recognize the Church of today? Does our behavior draw people to Jesus or does it send them fleeing?

      Speaking of Jesus, this is the name He was given by His Father, yet we have chosen to call Him something else. I have read many paragraphs where He is called Jesus in one sentence and Christ in another, as if He is two different people. Do we even know who Jesus is?

      This is not a time for throwing stones at the past, but a time for sorting through where we have all gone astray and returning to basics, which is what the Anglican divines lived and died for.

      Are you ready? The New Testament reading for today provides us with many examples of what can happpen to believers under fire. God just might be giving us the same opportunity.

      • “We could…wonder why with so many Bibles in different
        translations in English our understanding… is still skewed.”

        Poor translations abound.

      • ” … He is called Jesus in one sentence and Christ
        in another, as if He is two different people.”

        Variation helps avoid monotony.
        He is not Johnny-One-Note.

        [Video – 02:10]

      • Antiochene Son says

        I think that’s a rather romantic view of the protestant revolution. Many points of theology the protestants killed people over, we agree with Catholics on. They would have revealed against orthodoxy too — the Lutherans did, in fact. The printing press was probably a net negative.

        Not defending Rome’s errors, but many things the protestants think are errors, are not.

        As to the practice of how the church refers to Christ, this has been explained to you in the past. Nobody thinks he is two different persons. Christ is a title that is used throughout the Bible and everyone knows it’s Jesus. I’ve never heard a well formed Orthodox person rail about such things.

      • Joseph Lipper says

        Jesus is the Christ. The name Jesus being the Greek version of Joshua (meaning Saviour in Hebrew) and the name Christ being the Greek version of “the anointed one” designating the Old Testament references to a coming Messiah, or anointed one.

      • Katherine says

        Suffice it to say that there were a lot of people in different countries who began to read the Bible and discover that Rome was off track and they decided to do something about it.

        What, specifically, was in the Bible that convinced people Rome was off track?

    • ” After Henry’s death why did they not go back to Rome?”

      After the early death of his son and successor Edward VI, they did;
      during the reign of Henry’s daughter by Catherine of Aragon:

    • This is the pan-heresy of ecumenism running rampant

      Speaking of, however, looks like this time it’s coming from the OCA. I’ve seen rumblings about this on Twitter:


  7. https://twitter.com/JimJatras/status/1667606594958270467

    I had very low expectations about this meeting of the Orthodox-Roman Catholic dialogue or whatever it was called, but, from what I’ve been it’s essentially the Roman Catholics admitting that the Church of the first millennia was Orthodox in it’s ecclesiology and that Rome added to its ecclesiology post-schim…and the Roman Catholics who attended signed this document. admitting to it.

    It also reinforces the Chieti document from 2016.

    Good to see that Rome, at least at the top levels, admits to this. The problem is that everything else in that communion is still FUBAR.

    • Rome might admit various things, and will expect in exchange some concessions. But in the end they will not change the point that that they really care about – submission. This is not a good deal.

      • If they get submission, they can later reintroduce
        all the objectionable stuff they (temporarily) reject.

  8. From what I’ve seen people saying, it seems as though Metropolitan Saba of the AAONA is tightening the ship within the Archdiocese, in a good way. Thanks be to God.

    I can’t imagine him standing for what Elpi is doing. I hope he leads the charge to form a new AOB with the Russians, Serbians, and whoever else wants to join. The longer the AOB decides to stay with the Greeks, the more credibility they lose, if they ever had much to begin with.

    • George Michalopulos says

      I think what we are seeing is not so much a schism between the jurisdictions but within them and on a geographic basis.

      I can see some parishes on the East Coast of the OCA going along with this nonsense. Truth be told, I could even see some East Coast parishes of Antioch doing the same. However it appears that Metropolitan Saba has put the kybosh on any such fanciful musings from the “progressives” within his jurisdiction.

      Of course, ROCOR and I imagine the Serbs and the Bulgarians, no way.

      • I agree, George.

        I’m only familiar with the OCA Diocese of South (as I’m sure you are) and I view all the OCA through that lens, but, from what you have said and what I’ve seen others say the northeast OCA does not seem to be the same.

        My money would bet on northeast OCA/GOA being on board. I will say though, Met. Tikhon usually surprises me.

        on a separate note, looks like Belya’s case will be heard:


        I’m guessing this will go over like a ton of bricks at the AoB. Really hoping this is the straw that breaks the camels back. For American Orthodoxy to continue and thrive, it can no longer be under a Greek-dominated AoB, they are the death knell for the rest of us.

      • Antiochene Son says

        I have heard the same about Met. Saba, thanks be to God.

  9. I recall I once spoke to a GOA priest whom I greatly admire, and asked him about the permanent rainbow flag next to the Cathedral on 74th street. He tried to be maximally diplomatic about it, and hinted that it’s not such a big issue as some make it out to be. This, sadly, is the kind of thinking that permeates many in the GOA: that this is not the sword you want to die on.

    It was sad for me to hear because this is a cleric I’m still very fond of. He also ended up serving with the heretic Dumenko when he arrived to the cathedral to get his ‘human rights award’.

    This to me underlines the tragedy of this entire situation. There are many good people caught up in it who can’t break free of the administrative shackles surrounding them.

    • Katherine says

      According to one poster here, the rainbow is God’s gift to mankind(true). That’s why The Orthodox should reclaim it and proudly wear it as buttons, t-shirts, and, of course, decorate our Churches with rainbow flags. Yeah, that’ll teach ’em.

  10. From the AB’s homily at the Vespers, “Being in this church, borrowed from another Christian tradition, is a sign of our expansive and embracing love for all people. It is a symbolic act that many will try to interpret through their own filters of grievance, prejudice, and lack of basic human kindness.”

    They accuse others of lack kindness, being unloving – sound familiar? The rainbow coalition did the same thing throughout protestant confessions. No one wants to be called unloving, this is how ecumenists silence the faithful while THEY trample on the Holy Fathers and Canons of the Church. Saint Paisios refrained from joint prayers precisely to give a “good uneasy” … what would he say about the actions of today.

    • Antiochene Son says

      How is borrowing a Protestant building an act of love on the part of the Orthodox? His words make no sense.

      It would be an act of love on the part of the Protestants if an Orthodox mission borrowed a Protestant building for lack of any alternative, but to receive something shared is not generally considered “love” on behalf of the recipient. Such a bizarre twisting of language, logic, and facts.

      There are over 150 Orthodox parishes in the NYC metro area, so it was not necessary to share space.

  11. Anonymous II says

    An Animated Short Film

    See: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=B6RqccP55V0

  12. Josie perkins says
  13. Joseph Lipper says

    “[The Apostle] John sees that the glorious throne of God is surrounded by a rainbow (Revelation 4:3). That reminds us that the rainbow belongs to God, not a sinful sexual culture. God is so committed to the salvation of lost men and women that you can’t even gaze at his throne without seeing a shining symbol of redemption. God has invited you, and me, and every sinner to lay hold of his redemption that is found in Jesus alone.

    “As hard as the Christian mission is to engage this sexually corrupt culture, it is one that will be successful. God who created the rainbow and is, at this moment surrounded by one, will bring his people into a perfect and sinless world surrounded with glory, wonder, and rainbows.

    “The rainbow is God’s. He is going to take it back. The truth is, he really never lost it. It is our job to point a confused culture to the God who calls them to find sexual purity in Christ alone. It is our job to help them find the path of humility that leads away from pride and towards the right side of history surrounded by rainbows of redemption in a world where Christ is King.”


    • It’s too bad the GOA’s archbishop isn’t doing his job then, isn’t it?

      • Joseph Lipper says

        Gail, I disagree. I think Archbishop Elpidophoros is doing his job, just ruffling a few feathers, but that’s what leaders typically do. It may not be obvious, but I believe he is a major force in protecting Orthodoxy in America from persecution right now and in the foreseeable future. In particular, I believe he is protecting the very monasteries in America that Elder Ephraim established.

        Saint Sophrony of Essex said an interesting thing about bishops. He said:

        “Nowadays a saint cannot be a bishop, because people cannot endure what [a saint] says. For that reason, bishops are needed who have more mediocre experience and administrative abilities, because politicians today try to approach the Church through the Hierarchy. Therefore they need to have administrative abilities and experience, in order to keep the Church out of politics. The best thing nowadays is to be a priest.” ( a saying from “I know A Man in Christ”)

        So perhaps Archbishop Elpidophoros is not a saint, but as St. Sophrony says, this is not the time for saintly bishops.

        As far as serving an Orthodox Great Vespers in a chapel provided by St. Bartholomew’s Episcopal Church on a Saturday night, I really fail to see the problem here. If the issue is rainbow banners and flags, then these are not antithetical to the Gospel. The fact that they are often misappropriated as symbols of a sinful culture can only be rectified when Christians identify them instead as symbols of Christ’s redemptive love and purity. If we fail to “take back the rainbow”, then we have already capitulated and handed over an important symbol of Christ to a false political ideology. If we are ashamed of recognizing Christ in the rainbow, then perhaps Christ will be ashamed of recognizing us too.

        • I have more to say on the subject but this will have to suffice.

          People are not colors in a rainbow, Joseph. People are created by God in the image of God. The rainbow you see is a made-up construct designed to deceive people from this reality.

          • Joseph Lipper says

            Gail, the rainbow is a symbol and sign of Christ. Perhaps the great error of many people today is that they view the rainbow apart from Christ and merely as a symbol and sign of a people or of many peoples. I completely agree that we are not “colors in a rainbow”. That’s not what the rainbow is about. Rather, God says to Noah, “I set my rainbow in the clouds to serve as a sign of the covenant between me and the earth”.

            The rainbow represents the presence of God and His covenant. It can really only be properly identified with God and God’s people, those who follow Christ.

            • I think we agree, that never was the rainbow meant to depict a movement away from Christ who said in Matthew 5:17-20: 17 “Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill. 18 “For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished. 19 “Whoever then annuls one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever keeps and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. 20 “For I say to you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven.”

              In the words of the LGBTQ community, “The rainbow flag is a symbol of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer pride commonly used at LGBTQIA+ rights events worldwide. The colors reflect the diversity of the community in addition to the spectrum of human sexuality and gender.” To confuse this statement with anything in Scripture would be a mistake.

              If you can find Christ in the history of the “rainbow flag” anywhere, please let me know.

            • The rainbow represents God’s promise not to flood us again. Next time it’s fire and these degenerates will really feel it.

            • The Joe Biden rainbow flag symbolizes it’s okay to delude children into thinking they can choose their gender. The Joe Biden rainbow flag symbolizes it’s okay to give Lupron hormones to block puberty. The Joe Biden rainbow flag symbolizes it’s okay to remove kids genitals. The Joe Biden rainbow flag was the main flag with two smaller American flags on each side at Joe Biden’s White House Pride Day. The devil comes in many forms. The Joe Biden rainbow flag is the Third Reich flag with American characteristics! The Joe Biden rainbow flag sneers at the graves of our American soldiers who fought for what the American flag stands for!

              I spit on the rainbow flag. I stand for my country. I will never concede!!!

        • Just a dad says

          re: “As far as serving an Orthodox Great Vespers in a chapel provided by St. Bartholomew’s Episcopal Church on a Saturday night, I really fail to see the problem here.”

          I had thought about that, remembering that Luke, John, and others wrote about us being a light in the darkness. And in NYC, that sad place seems about as dark as it gets. So, maybe (I thought) Christ would do the same thing – not stay inside the synagogues, but go preach in the places that need the Truth the most.

          Then in church on Sunday I looked up at a painting of Christ being removed from the cross. He is depicted with a white cloth being wrapped around him and draped over the cross. Above the main horizontal bars of the cross is a small board, slightly tilted, with letters. Ours are І.Н.Ц.І., but in other churches it might be INBI or INRI.

          I thought about the photo of the cross in St Barts where the cloth (not a “ribbon”) draped over the cross is made in bright rainbow colors, not white. I thought about the tilted wood at the top of the cross, not with INBI but LGBTQ+.

          That changed my perspective entirely. Elpi served there, in the midst of darkness, and said nothing about all of that. Would Christ preach there and say nothing about the horrific bastardization of our faith that is celebrated there? I think not.

          Elpi has shown, repeatedly, tacit approval of everything we are seeing in the catholic and protestant churches.

          Coming soon to an Orthodox church near you.

          Back to Joseph’s statement: “As far as serving an Orthodox Great Vespers in a chapel provided by St. Bartholomew’s Episcopal Church on a Saturday night, I really fail to see the problem here.” I agree, AS LONG AS THE PURPOSE OF APPEARING THERE IS TO SPREAD TRUTH AND CALL THEM TO REPENTANCE FOR THE ABOMINATION THEY HAVE CREATED THERE.

          • Joseph Lipper says

            This is obviously not the Cross of Christ. Crucifixion is not, of itself, a sign of sanctity either. The cross you refer to looks like an artist’s rendering making some sort of social statement apparently.

            I don’t get the sense that this cross is even actually something real inside St. Bartholomew’s. It looks like a computer generated image on their website made for an artist’s documentary film that they are promoting.

            However, I would say that the sexual passions are supposed to be put to death, crucified with Christ. So, the idea of the image is not entirely off.

            • Mr. Lipper: “It looks like a computer generated image on their website made for an artist’s documentary film that they are promoting.

              “However, I would say that the sexual passions are supposed to be put to death, crucified with Christ. So, the idea of the image is not entirely off.”

              Surely this is what the artist’s documentary film is promoting. St. Barts is known for that. Rrrrright…

            • Joseph, the suggestion evoked by the image is that Christ
              was crucified, not because he was І.Н.Ц.І., INBI or INRI,
              but because he was LGBTQ+

              This idea is entirely off.

            • Just a dad says

              Joseph – I would say that you missed the point, but I am confident you intentionally ignored the point. Elpi has no valid reason to serve in that church unless it is to call them to repentance for promotion of a lifestyle that is antithetical to the Orthodox faith. He has no interest in doing that, and you seem just fine with Elpi’s silence. Speaks volumes.

        • Joseph, I often times wonder whom you really are? You are quite obviously a very intelligent guy, but you’ve either been brainwashed, or you are a publicist for the GOA/EP. (I pray for you, brother.)

          • He is the Devil’s advocate…

            • Well, we shouldn’t be be asking or expecting answers to personal questions. I get the feeling these are more rhetorical and comical than serious. Got to give Joseph some credit here. He has a hard job.

    • Katherine says

      Joseph, you have been given the greatest gift of all…The Church. Your comments in this thread are nothing short of heretical and scandalous and are a direct attack on the tradition and theology of The Orthodox Church. If I said the things to my Bishop that you have written here, I would be rebuked and banned from Communion until I repudiated them, because his concern is with my soul and salvation. So, my brother in Christ, I rebuke you. If you find this offensive…good! Now is the time for accrivia.

  14. Anonymous II says
  15. Gay Patriarch 🙂
    Unbelivable what this guy is doing and stil claims he is important in the Church of Christ.