This Just In: Abp. Demetrios Has Resigned

Abp. Demetrios and Pat. Bartholomew

Pat. Bartholomew and Abp. Demetrios

Source: Romfea

Archbishop of America Demetrios has resigned (upd)

Archbishop of America Demetrios has resigned, after the meeting with Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew.

Archbishop Demetrios had served for 20 years, since 1999, the Orthodox Church of America when he succeeded the former Archbishop Spyridon.

In the relevant announcement of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, it is stated that the Archbishop’s resignation shall be discussed at the Holy Synod of May 9.

Earlier, Ecumenical Patriarch welcomed the Archbishop Elder Demetrios of America, and noted that this was going to be an extremely important meeting between the two Hierarchs, as it was estimated that US Archbishop’s visit is taking place having as background the discussions on the decision of Bartholomew to request the resignation of Demetrios.

It is reminded that Ecumenical Patriarch had twice called on the 90-year-old Demetrios to resign but the latter had resisted.

Abp. Demetrios and Pat. Bartholomew


  1. Peter A. Papoutsis says

    Not good! Not good at all!

    • George Michalopulos says

      Indeed. Nobody is saying that there weren’t missteps made by Demetrius, but he did stand in the breach as far as America was concerned.

      • Peter A. Papoutsis says

        It will be full blown unia and secularization in the GOAA.

      • I only saw himtwice celebrating liturgy while i was in USA but from my view of him and his life a good decent able man, but perhaps unable to.stand yp to the mafia around him and not a good administrator . And he was constantly being degraded by Phanar. On the down side he locked the open courage to openly stand up to Phanar. But really how could he?

        • There are inspirational leaders who can move people to greater levels of spirituality and commitment and then there are those who are better behind a desk crunching numbers or teaching others.. I think Archbishop Demetrious is a scholar who would have been better in academia. It’s a shame that over 20 years this was not recognized by the Phanar and others around him, or maybe it was and they did not care.

  2. Alitheia1875 says

    Who will replace him? Pray fervently it’s not either Metropolitan Elpidoforos or Metropolitan Evangelos.

    • It’ll be Met. Emmanuel le Gaulois says

      My money’s on Met. Emmanuel le Gaulois. Sort of like Astérix le Gaulois.

      But while Astérix fought the nasty Romans in those awesome cartoon books, Met. Emmanuel le Gaulois will naturally fight the Russians. The American government will adore him, as long as he doesn’t focus on the Orthodox Christian faith or the Orthodox Christian life too much.

      Anyone want to help in drafting a set of cartoon books chronicling the adventures of Met. Emmanuel le Gaulois! Could be a hoot.

      Le Christ est ressuscité!

      • Yes get yr French letters and lessons in.

        Phanar beurocratism regions suprime.
        Christ will get an occassional look in if needed to beat and keep the peasants down. Makes you almost understand Lenin!

      • Porlas Canrilas says

        Manny already refused. Cleopas Strongles of Sweden, who angered the gyro mafia in Corona, might be his replacement on the short list, but he was rumored fegulating with Kuvares.

    • anthony says

      National Herald reports today that a successor has been selected and will be announced on May 11.

    • TNH reports that Metropolitan Methodios and Metropolitan Nikitas of the Dardanelles are in the running. Both with interesting backgrounds, but ability to lead the GOA?

  3. Finally!
    There’s been so much mismanagement that we need a capable (younger!) Archbishop with energy to pull the GOA up from the quicksand!
    I’d love to see someone like Archbishop Gerasimos of San Francisco! Great Bio!

    • Alitheia1875 says

      The sad fact is that none of the American hierarchs possess both the administrative skills and absolutely necessary pastoral understanding and compassion to be an effective leader of the GOA. Someone who has those qualifications will be fought every step of the way by the present group of hierarchs.

      • Greatly Saddened says

        Oh so sad and oh so true, Alitheia!

      • and depth of spiritual integrity.

        • Papouli Theodore says

          You outsiders are clueless. Demetrios was an unmitigated 20 year long slow burn disaster.

          If you believe that kindly geronda act, then I’ve got a bridge for sale in Brooklyn.

          Good riddance.

          • Friend you live there so i listen to what u say. Certainly what he was meant to be looking after is in a declined mess.
            More traditional in liturgical matters maybe?

          • Stephen michaels says

            This is absolutely the God’s honest truth

    • Please not the GOA Abp of SFO says

      “Archbishop Gerasimos of San Francisco”

      Oh please, Lord, no. Talk about a disaster. On so many levels.

    • SecondGeneration says

      I’m partial to Metropolitan Savvas, American born AND raised in the Midwest, truly understands 2nd and 3rd generation communities, which is the future that many of the uber-Greek communities of NY and Chicago refuse to see.
      Also cool to have an Archbishop who once played in a punk band.

      • Friend I see where you coming from and have sympathy but this ‘ trendy ‘ image the western churches went through hoping get the punters through the door. Soon faded.

        • SecondGeneration says

          Not trendy but facing reality head on.

          • I hope so. I do not know him except read an interview where he seemed informed and understanding of IT. I hope you right. The church needs some one grounded in the faith and spirituality, yet open and aware of world we in and the daily issues people live. Good luck.

      • Papouli Theodore says

        Get a clue, friend.

        This is not a serious person.

        He prattles on about Bob Dylan, Hillary Clinton, and Obama more than Saints of the Church.

        He is a dyed in the wool demoncrat on social issues, is addicted to Facebook, and a poor administrator.

        Really, many of you need to wake up.

    • anonimus per Scorilo says

      Isn’t this the “Archbishop Gerry” who was jumping up and down with gladness on social media many many years ago when Obama was first elected ? Semi-blasphemously quoting from the psalm “this is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it”…

      That would be a very sad choice

      • SomeoneElse says

        This would also be true of Met. Savas.

        • Claes vanOldenphatt says

          Your partisan concerns are ridiculous.
          The obvious choice of the Fener to run the GOA (into the ground) will be good ole Hope-bearer Lambrianidis himself, always ready with the bon mot apropos, as when he complained to the Holy Cross graduating class a few years ago that some among them were not of the homogeneia. The man will do wonders for Orthodox unity.

    • Gail Sheppard says

      Is Archbishop Gerasimos of San Francisco the bishop who once said he was fond of the TV show, “Desperate Housewives,” AKA “Bishop Jerry,” who says his greatest gift is “captivating people?” I think he also said, “I’m passionate about what I believe and what I want to do. And I intend to do whatever I intend to do.”

      I’m not sure what he “intends to do” necessarily lines up with the mission of the Orthodox Church in this country.

      • Did he say all that.? OMG, as fatuous as that? Completely admit from Orthodox spirituality and completely dead

      • For the record I liked desperate housewives, at least in its 1st season. Thereafter it just drifted off into improbable situations. This was despite the best efforts of Alfre Woodard to infuse some new blood. The novelty had worn off along with the creativity.

      • Constantinos says

        HI Gail,
        The man you describe sounds a like he’s a little full of himself. ” I intend to do whatever I intend to do.” I wonder if he refers to himself in the third person.

        • Gail Sheppard says

          Hi, Costa. I don’t know whether or not he is full of himself but I do know that a true Orthodox bishop talks in terms of taking a conciliar approach to matters. There is no “I” in Church.

  4. Jim Jatras says


    Oh, I dunno …

    Meeting With Pope Benedict

    “Metropolitan Gerasimos maintains strong Ecumenical relations especially with the Roman Catholic churches in the west, and has participated in various events including a pilgrimage in 2010 of Orthodox and Roman Catholic faithful to Rome, Athens and Constantinople.”

    • SecondGeneration says

      That’s a plus!

      • Gail Sheppard says

        Yeah. . . no, SecondGeneration. It is most definitely NOT a plus.

        • SecondGeneration says

          Respectfully but vehemently disagree.
          Why would we not have dialogue with our closest branch of Christianity, other than ancient an irrelevant biases?
          Remember Constantine the Great purposely broke through the prior history of Rome to found Constantinople.

          • Gail Sheppard says

            We have on-going dialogs with them, but “strong ecumenical relations” suggests something altogether different. They have embraced a number of heresies. We can only get so close until they relinquish them.

            • From a pragmatic standpoint it makes sense that the Phanar and the various hierarchs of her eparchies would support close cooperation with Rome. They see it as an ecclestiastical and political advantage.

              • Gail Sheppard says

                The fear is that they are both cooperating with those who would like to leverage Christianity geopolitically.

              • Vergil,
                from a …”pragmatically” pragmatic point of view,
                what is the REAL benefit reached all these decades from having a contact with the ro,an Catholics (or for that matter with the Protestants)?

                A REAL benefit is eg how many R.C. have become Orthodox via these contacts? None.
                All converts went past these official contacts.

                • Antiochene Son says

                  Well said. People are converting in spite of ecumenical dialogue, not because of it.

                • Constantinos says

                  Most of the Catholics who come into the Orthodox Church convert because they are Uniates. Why be Greek Melkite when you can be the real thing?

                  • Michael Bauman says

                    Well, Mr. C not at all the case in my part of the world. It is really different here. The Old World is just as not as much of an issue. Part of it lies in our geography. You can see forever yet know at the same time the dynamic presence of God with us.

                  • Ioannis says

                    Constantineh (Κωνσταντῖνε)
                    There are two kinds extreme groups of RCs, and some in between.
                    The majority are completely brainwashed by the Pope. He is like a real God to them. They will blindly do as he says, and be happy too.
                    On the other extreme there are those who want to do what Christ says.
                    They stay RCs for as long as they are convinced that is correct.
                    If the find out that they are wrong they will leave the RC Church.
                    This is no theory but practice.
                    I suppose every one has the right to do what he likes with his present life.
                    One chooses Christ as the ultimate devotion.
                    Another chooses his country and nationality.
                    Another his Company or Organization, or football club etc.
                    Another chooses to stand on two rowing boats, e.g. one foot on Christ, the other foot on Mammon and so on.

                    You know it is nice to make jokes here, but,
                    if you are really interested to know what some learned & devout RCs have found out about their Pope and his Church, you will find lots of them in a Search Engine. But, very quickly, you might want to read here about two most notable conversions of the previous century:

                    1) The Spanish nobleman and researcher monk Pablo Ballester Convalier.
                    He discovered the flaws. Became Orthodox, then Bishop in Mexico City, then killed outside his Church by a “drunken” ex-General, member of Opus Dei.
                    (original footnotes omitted)

                    2) The French RC theologian/professor Placide Deseille who died recently. It took him 25 (!) whole years to study deeper and deeper and be convinced that Orthodoxy is the real church of Christ. He then went to Mt.Athos and insisted that he be baptized again!

                • Keep in mind the EP hasn’t nurtured this relationship with Rome just to poach their parishioners. The EP sees Rome as a way to increase its political clout in Turkey. You could also say that union with Rome would also give it more leverage with Moscow, but that’s just hearsay at this point.

                  • Vergil: “union with Rome would also give it more leverage with Moscow”

                    EP’s return to Unia, would make EP completely irrelevant to Moscow. Same as with Uniates from the Western Ukraine and Canada.

          • Michael Bauman says

            Second generation: One must be either/or when it comes to the differences between the Orthodox Church and the RCC on matters of faith: ecclesiology (Christology); soteriology and anthropology. The differing understanding of these three core areas of Christian faith is so vast that any compromise between the two is impossible unless one assumes the modern apostate notion of egalitarianism.

            There are only three possibilities (Protestantism, an offshoot of the ideas of the RCC is not an alternative).
            1. The RCC is right;
            2. The Orthodox Church is right;
            3. We are both wrong (which does not mean some artificial amalgam is right as that is like mixing elemental sodium and water)***

            According to the 1848 Encyclical of the Eastern Patriarchs, the office of the Papacy and all the papal claims are heretical in the extreme and repentance in total is required for restoration to the Church.

            According to RCC teaching officially affirmed when Pope Benedict assumed the Papal throne, the Orthodox Church and all the Orthodox faithful are schismatics worthy of hell unless we repent and acknowledge the Pope as, among other things, Vicar of Christ (an anti-incarnational doctrine), etc. (some extreme versions of this doctrine teach that Orthodox repentance is impossible BTW).

            I fail to see the “common ground” here. Does not mean we cannot be nice to each other in a distant semi-friendly way like some divorced folk, but “Ecumenical Relations” sounds an awful lot like adulterous relations and fornication to me.

            So, we are each left with the choice. I long ago rejected the RCC version but I can intellectually understand those who don’t. I took another 20 years before I was made aware of the Orthodox understanding. It was easy to accept.

            Unfortunately, the mutual footsie games being played on the international level confuse the faithful and make many open to bizarre and cancerous postulates of Christianity that have become a glossed over version of the modern apostasy. Version that it seems the RCC is beginning to embrace too. The RCC is fast becoming a high priced call girl and you know what St. Paul said about Christians united with the flesh of prostitutes: 1 Cor 6:16

            Bp Gerasimos and Bp Savas are not up to the task, sadly. Of course, no one in their right mind would want the post. As the Patriarchal Bulgarian Met. Joseph said in a retrospective of Ligonier “All of us who were involved will have to die before anything new happens” He was likening it to the refusal of the Children of Israel to enter the Promised Land and being forced back into the desert. That means another 20-30 years before anything substantive changes. Still God cares for His people.

            ***”Sodium metal reacts rapidly with water to form a colorless solution of sodium hydroxide (NaOH) and hydrogen gas (H2). The resulting solution is basic because of the dissolved hydroxide. The reaction is exothermic.” That means there is an explosion and nothing of the original compounds remain.

            • Tim R. Mortiss says

              “I fail to see the “common ground” here. Does not mean we cannot be nice to each other in a distant semi-friendly way like some divorced folk….”

              My Roman Catholic wife (of 52 years) got a kick out of that one!

              Haven’t tried it out on all the Catholic guys I’ve been business and law partners with, lo these 40 and more years….

              • Michael Bauman says

                Tim, you do realize I am talking about the Roman Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church as bodies and the “ecumenical” attempt to unite the two by ignoring the real and substantive differences, I hope. The friendship and love that can be offered and participated in by distinct persons in the two bodies is very different. In fact, it is there that any honest hope and promise of re-union lies–not at the level of the hierarchs or clergy.

                At the personal level, there is a certain common ground that is real and solid and worth cultivating. If sustained, active persecution comes and we are forced in one way or another into a catacomb like existence, we will have to rely on each other in Christ regardless of the theology. Still, IMO, the fullness of what those interrelationships might become with a shared faith is not there.

                I must say one of the stories in a book of convert stories I was assigned to read as part of my catechumenate struck me deeply. The lady telling the story was an Orthodox woman. She met and married a Jewish man who refused to convert. She loved this man with all her heart. So for the next twenty years she went to the Divine Liturgy faithfully and lit a candle and prayed for her husband, but did not partake of communion (whether of her own volition or in consultation with her confessor/priest was not said).

                In the course of time, her beloved husband did decide to be with her in faith and they were able to receive communion together and their marriage was finally fulfilled in Christ.

                When I married Merry–outside the Church, I had a similar but much shorter experience (Thank God). Mine was only for nine months but when we did each of us receive communion on Holy Saturday, there was a flowering in our marriage and in our personal lives. I felt re-born into the Church. We celebrated the 9th anniversary of that blessing this past Holy Saturday.

                A great deal to ponder in this I think.

              • Ioannis says

                Tim, I’d like to add one more case like your wife’s and the two cases Michael mentions: As I witnessed it, the husband prayed to Christ fervently for some years and his wife decided herself overnight to become Orthodox, and a devout one indeed.
                I know, we have so many duties every day and we forget the power of our Faith in Christ.

                • Tim R. Mortiss says

                  The Spirit bloweth where it listeth.

                  I was a Presbyterian for 66 years. But I was what I call a ‘fellow traveler’ with the Orthodox from about 1980 onward, i.e. from my early 30s. Went to countless Orthodox services over the years; observed Orthodox Lent, and had Pascha feasts at home every single year after 1980.

                  Many of my kids are devout Protestant Christians, no doubt to some extent because of their upbringing.

                  At a Lenten vespers a bit over 5 years ago, attended along with me by my youngest son (then 38), he asked: “Don’t you think it’s finally time to become Orthodox?” I agreed; he and I immediately became catechumens and were received in a few months. A year ago, his four children were baptized in the Orthodox church. That’s four of our 12 grandchildren. Many of the others are very devout Christians, and stand up for the Faith in hostile university and social environments.

                  All the family deeply respect Orthodox Christianity; some may come over someday, some may not. I pray and don’t worry about it at all. As the above shows, God works in mysterious ways, His wonders to perform.

                  • A moving and touching case Tim. Not the first one, not the last one. Life is like that. God bless.

                    If I may, I would just like to emphasize the IMPORTANCE
                    our own fervent prayer with real tears to Christ directly,
                    and certainly asking further assistance from the prayers of the Saints
                    which God appreciates in Heaven,
                    from O.T. e.g. Abraham, David God’s good friend whom we read/sing every day
                    the beloved John the Baptist, the Theotokos, up to recent Saints.
                    And of course as much as we can the never-ending-contact with Christ,
                    “Lord Jesus Christ have mercy on me sinner.”

                    Thereby you have the strongest Armour to solve all your real problems Tim.
                    Christ will reply to you with solutions you didn’t expect.

                    I’m sorry, I wanted to say this because I have seen people doing this,
                    here and now, and it is true.

          • Johannes says

            Any allegiance with Rome is spiritual suicide. Our message to the Papists should be: repent, for the Kingdom of God is at hand.

      • Peter A. Papoutsis says

        Not a plus. But a big minus.

    • Again I understand second generation and where coming from, and have sympathy as there are Orthodox who LOVE the divisions for their own sake. but warm fuzzy words where nothing changes and rooms have doors but no walls, only gets you so far.
      The only thing can say is Vatican papalism is less ultra montain than Bartholomaios 1871 version he seems to be cooking up to compensate for his situation. He hopes to secure Phanar in eyes of Turkish government by turning it into a Vatican.

    • The Pope is in Bulgaria at moment. The bulgarian Patriarch met with Pope but no public prayers or services. Only Mass for small Catholic community.

      • Solitary Priest says

        Did the Pope serve Eastern Rite or Western? I know Bulgaria has one Uniate bishop.

        • Western rite Mass for Catholics.
          Yes there is a uniate bishop and a old calandarist one also.

          • Solitary Priest says

            Well, I will take the Old Calendar Metropolitan over the Uniate bishop any day. I don’t care what anyone says. The irony is that Patriarch Bartholomew recognises the latter as a bishop, but not the former. No doubt Mr. Lipper will say that the Patriarch is correct. Otherwise, why would Constantinople have re-ordained the two Old Calendar bishops here in America? They did create a scandal, but that’s irrelevant to the matter being discussed.
            I feel sad that I can’t serve with a former parishoner, whose parish is 100 miles away, because he belongs to the Greek Old Calendar Metropolis. Yet, I CAN serve with some Greek or Serbian priest who may be a Mason. As of now, I wouldn’t serve with any priest from any dependency of the EP. I won’t name names or locations, but at least one more priest may leave the American Carpatho Russian church may be bailing out soon.

            • Prayers for you, Father! May God help you and all priests, especially those that are in a spiritual turmoil over these important spiritual matters.

            • Solitary priest, i have always had respect for sane old calandarist church as Greek synod in resistance. They live Orthodoxy. If thst embarrasses the world, you know, they may be on to something.
              I think it’s not a debate on the merits or otherwise of others outside church.
              We leave to God the situation there. Simply to know where the truth IS and to stay there in humility.

              • Solitary Priest says

                Yes, that’s whom I meant. The moderate Old Calendarists of Greece, with whom Metropolitan Photius of Bulgaria has communion. My former parishioner is a priest in this moderate group. He has two or three brothers who are clergy if the EP.

            • Constantinos says

              Solitary Priest,
              What do you know about the Masons besides gossip, slander, and lies? It’s this kind of obscurantist fundamentalism that gives some Orthodox a bad name. The great Metropolitan Antony Bashir of the Antiochian Diocese was a freemason as was our greatest president, George Washington, along with many of the greatest statesmen in US history such as Ben Franklin, and Senator Sam Nunn from Georgia
              The Shriners operate 22 hospitals for children, 18 orthopedic hospitals, 3 burns hospitals, and one orthopedic, burn, and spinal cord and injury care hospital. The Masons donate two million dollars to charity every DAY! I say to you, “Go and do likewise!”
              Instead of being an Orthodox Christian, you should write for Jack Chick Publications. Intelligent people don’t believe the pablum you espouse. You are a rancid fundamentalist. Instead of living in the Dark Ages, how about you try living in the 21st century? Man, I can’t stand narrow minded, fundamentalist bigots.

              • Constantinos: “What do you know about the Masons besides gossip, slander, and lies? It’s this kind of obscurantist fundamentalism”

                The key issue with Masons, is not whether they are “good” or “bad” people. The key problem is that they espouse a heretical doctrine [see below]. For the same reason Orthodox may not join JW or Mormons.

                1. Deism
                2. Pelagianism
                3. Syncretism
                4. Rationalism
                5. Relativism
                6. Gnosticism
                5. Occultism
                6. Naturalism
                Etc, etc …

              • Antiochene Son says

                Freemasonry, in referring to God as Architect, commits heresy which violates the Nicene Creed. God is the Maker ex-nihilo, not the Architect who arranges existing matter.

                Freemasonry is not JUST a charity organization, you know know that.

                • Constantinos says

                  Antiochene Son,
                  It does no such thing and YOU should know that. Throughout the ages, many Christians, like St. Thomas in his Summa, uses this expression as does John Calvin. In order for your statement to be correct, you would have to say that it may come from Catholicism and Protestantism. The designation is just another name for the Creator of the Universe. You are correct, it is not just a charity organization, it is also a fraternal brotherhood that stresses service to your fellow man with the highest ethical and moral standards.
                  Before you criticize freemasonry, why don’t you tell all the wonderful things you do for your local community. You will freemasons are the pillars of your community and churches. Hundreds upon hundreds of devout Orthodox Christians see no conflict between their freemasonry and their church. Remember, the Boy Scouts are freemasons on training wheels. No wonder so many Eagle Scouts become freemasons. If you condemn freemasonry, you have to condemn the Boy Scouts for they are one and the same. As a matter of fact, the Boy Scouts were founded by thirty third mason Daniel Beard.

                  • Antiochene Son says

                    Freemasonry is prohibited by the main Protestant denomination where I live, and hence there are none in my community. The nearest Masonic “TEMPLE” is about an hour away from me in a big city.

                    Freemasonry is syncretistic by design. Some can play the mind games to project their own faith onto the Lodge’s vague but problematic teachings, but that is only projection. Some think that Mormons are Christians too.

                  • Antiochene Son says

                    We see how the no-longer-for-Boy Scouts turned out. I do happily condemn it. Boys should join an Orthodox scouting program, or better get, learn those skills from their fathers.

                    Likewise organizations like The Order of St. Ignatius exists to keep men out of Freemasonry.

                    • George Michalopulos says

                      It’s funny, but for decades there were attempts to allow homosexuals in as Scoutmasters in the Boys Scouts. Then when that hurdle was reached, homosexual post-pubescent boys were allowed in. Scouting has crumbled as a result.

                      Now, lo and behold, I was watching late-night TV the other night and saw a commercial for one of those class-action law firms advertising its services for those boys and their families who had been abused by homosexual scoutmasters.

                      I’m beginning to think that this was all by design by the various lawyers’ guilds.

                      Joke: In the Old West there was this one-horse town. It had one lawyer in it, one drugstore, one grocery, you get the picture. One day, a lawyer was traveling through and he decided he wanted to put down roots there. He opened up a law office and the established lawyer told him he was crazy. That town was so small that he could barely scratch a living. The new lawyer told him “Tell you what, give me 6 months and we’ll both be rich.”

                      He did and they were.

                    • Antiochene Son says

                      I saw a Boy Scout selling cookies (seriously?) on the sidewalk downtown a few weeks ago. He was desperate for a sale, and he looked so sad. I felt bad for him, like a person clinging to a plank from a shipwreck.

                • Tim R. Mortiss says

                  Freemasonry exists on Monomakhos, and in the imagination of a few Orthodox. Everywhere else, it is moribund. The Shrine is an exception, but by very little any more.

                  Every big city has a repurposed Masonic Temple; essentially all of them abandoned by Masons decades ago because of drastically reduced membership.

                  My city of 200,000 is a typical example. The big temple is a wonder: 12 full ballrooms; beautiful structure. It’s been a successful private venue for extravaganzas, wedding receptions, proms, military balls, concerts, etc. for decades now.

                  About 50 years ago, the Masons moved out, to tiny cinder-block buildings in an obscure setting.

                  So it is all over the country. In many ways, it’s sad. The ancient photos show balls and soires every weekend; several at a time. This was when people of the middle class led public social lives. This began an unceasing decline in the 1930s.

                  • Constantinos says

                    Mr. Mortiss,
                    Finally, a post from someone who is not a religious bigot. You have summed up the situation perfectly. Thank you for your common sense, as usual.

                  • Antiochene Son says

                    Good riddance. Anything Freemasonry offered/offers can and should be offered by the Church in an openly Christ-centered context. That it’s in its death throes means that my Protestant ancestors were successful in their righteous crusade against the Lodge.

                    I really don’t understand the love it gets by many here.

                    • Constantinos says

                      Antiochian Son,
                      To add to Mr. Mortiss’s comments, freemasonry in America reached its apogee in 1960 when there were over four million active masons in our country. Membership is now down to slightly over one million – the same number of all the Orthodox jurisdictions combined in America.
                      I guess if freemasonry is in its death throes, the same can be said for Orthodoxy in America. By the way, the first thing Hitler did when he came to power was to shut down all the lodges. I wouldn’t be too proud of ” your ancestor’s righteous crusades.” Religious persecutions are never “righteous.” Only religious bigots, fundamentalists, and intolerants fight against the lodges.

                    • Tim R. Mortiss says

                      The real question is why anybody still cares.

                      I had a great-grandfather who was an active Mason; he died in 1956. Other than him, I know of nobody in the family for generations who was ever a Mason. So I have no axe to grind either way.

                      Freemasonry in Europe was in bad odor with the RC church because it contained influential and important people in an organization that was outside the control of both Church and State; not a situation they desired.

                      In the US, it was mostly just American-style public-spirited “fraternalism”. Like the non-Masonic Elks, Lions, Kiwanis, and Greek university fraternities, if perhaps rather more so. Especially a few generations back folks liked these made-up rituals; more so than they do now.

                      The occasional spate of anti-Masonry we see here now and then is just a subset of the general not-uncommon conspiracy-mindedness of certain contributors.

                      “Righteous crusades” have less to do with the decline than movies and television. People just stopped dressing up every Friday and Saturday night and going to banquets and dances.

  5. anonymous says

    Nothing will change if Phyletism remains a issue in the Greek Archdiocese, I’m lucky I belong to a Greek Church with a Romanian revert priest, serious about keeping the church alive with convert blood, and traditional Orthodoxy, however though GOARCH a mess, Phyletism, financial corruption, the mess at the St. Nicholas shrine, memorial service for dogs for crying out loud. I look to the monasteries to hold the faith in North America in the coming years.

    • Memorial service for dogs!! I am an animal loved big time but…. I no longer expect much from GOCA, either liturgically or spiritually, but now we have the pits!!

  6. Greatly Saddened says

    Let us face reality. No matter who it is. he will be a puppet ot the Ecumenical Patriarchate. Perhaps with even less authority than His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios presently has. He should also be extremely careful of his fellow hierarchs from within. Unfortunately, nowadays it seems no one can be trusted! Now, how sad is that?

    The Ecumenical Patriarch may very well even decide to do away with the office of Archbishop here in the U.S. and have nine (9) Metropolitans, rather than the present eight (8) and an Archbishop. Making the present Direct Archdiocesan District, in to a Metropolis of its own. It’s just a thought!

    • Gail Sheppard says

      I agree. It’s going to get worse before it gets better. We have a huge spiritual battle in front of us that may define Orthodoxy for generations to come, which is why it’s imperative that we stick together regardless of our differences of opinion.

  7. It is delusional to think that some hierarch is going to fix the problems in the GOA. Only by grace can the problems be addressed and grace is manifest only through repentance. I fear the charge to the new AB, from the EP, will be to Hellenize the church. Certainly the new AB will be controlled by the EP, maybe even the highest bidder. The GOA needs a godly vision not a just a better administrator. Christ must be central to the the needed renewal of the GOA.

    • Wait. Aren’t half of the new GOA priests converts? Do ethnic GOA parishes have the birth rates, conversions and priest vocations to control their own destinies?

  8. Greatly Saddened says

    Oh yes, Jk. Spot on, my brother in Christ!

  9. Greatly Saddened says

    If Patriarch Bartholomew decides to appoint a locum tenens. The first in line by seniority would be Metropolitan Methodios of Boston.

    Due to Father Metropulos’ recent resignation/firing as President of HCHC. Metropolitan Methodios has been named Interim President. If for some reason Metropolitan Methodios would decline, the next senior hierarch would be Metropolitan Isaiah of Denver. The byzantine intrigue continues and only time will tell.

  10. r j klancko says

    Time for an American born non Greek widower. Time to send a message of avowing allegience to America and not a foreign entity. Time for someone knowledgeable about American family life and it’s rigors and challenges. This is an opportunity to make a positive statement to our youth. Otherwise the oca will be proven as the correct choice and correct path to follow. Unfortunately my money will need to be put on an ethnic Greek celibate which will harken the demise of the archdiocese for it will be business as usual but I will win the bet. As usual the American Russians win. Slava Boghu

    • My bet always on the slavs to mostly preserve Church, liturgically and spiritually and I am greek.

    • Antiochene Son says

      This celebate vs. married (widower) distinction really runs me the wrong way, and it’s borderline heretical. St. Paul was celibate, and his beautiful writings on marriage remain the gold standard of Christian married life.

      Every celibate man or woman grew up in a family, with parents and siblings, and married life is not so great a mystery that a bishop who has not personally lived it cannot be enlightened by the Holy Spirit to lead his flock.

      Same with a foreign bishop, frankly. Our Metropolitan Joseph, a Syrian, is doing a fine job for American Orthodox. It takes a willingness to listen and be enlightened, that’s all. Personal experience is not everything, and often it can blind a person to problems nobody can see.

      • r j klancko says

        the impression i have been given is that joseph has been re-arabicizing the church and is anti-western rite – just the opposite of metropolitan antony’s vision– and unlike the syriacs and melkites has not championed the cause of the christians immigrating from the middle east – which has caused great concern- if this is true it is a tragedy – unfortunatrely many antochians i have spoken with are disenchanted —– on the otherhand, many of the celibates i have met are running away from society and life — as such they have great dificulty relating to the needs of a typical family — oh, for the days of metropolitan leonty, metropolitan platon, methopolitan theophilus, metropolitan ireney, metropolitan orestes, metropolitan andrei, to name just a few – all were widowers, and what about patriarch joseph klimovich of springfield, mass who was married — unless you have had to manage a family you do not appreciate the rigors of everyday life. I even see it with married clergy who are childless and those with children — thise who hsve children are typically more sensitive, more kind, more pastoral versus the others who are more ego-centric and authoratative — if we are to grow, we need to change our paradigms — and according to the data, we are not growing and over the past 100 years our growth has been through immigration and not through organic nurturing and retention. we have lost generations – i meet graduates of eastern orthodoxy almost everyday in my career – some have fond memories but they all have moved on elsewhere — this shows that we do not retain nor practice the ministry of st paul — we are not missionaries and do not nurture our flocks – we tend to be etho-centric bigots and this is not christianity — we even shunn our fellow orthodox – even our fellow ethnic orthodox — in researching the history of the eastern churches of connecticut — many were not only focused a particular ethnic group, but also a particular state — i.e. that church is for cretans, that church is for spartans, that church is for souidie syrians, that is a lebanese not a syrian parish, that is a vlach parish, etc. i believe it was st pogo the great who once said to the effect that we have found the enemy and it is us. we are our own enemy if we choose to allow our traditional paradigms to rule us for we ae not clearing a pathway for future growth. so why not an american born, american educated, widowed priest with children as the new archbishop? is that all so bad? May God help us to see the way through the fog, and bless us all, Amen

        • I met an ethnic Greek emigre clergyman yesterday who asked about my parish’s profile, and I told him it was not very ethnic but rather mixed. He quickly told me that ALL parishes are ethnic, even those populated by non-emigres. That is, in his ethnic Greek view, we barbaroi are classifiable as ethnics, not so Greeks. Neither of us mentioned Romaiosinoi – the imperial identity that is the transnational concept of community ‘native’ to Christendom. I guess he wanted to remind me, native-born Anglo-American, that in his eyes I am the ethnic, obviously seeking to impose my narrow ethnic view of the Church. Apparently this kind of chauvinism that seems to define mainstream local language and culture as marginal, is invincible.

        • So so true. It’s not that celibate clergy cannot be pastorally effective but it’s the need to include those who have children and have raised a family. And above all talk and think in english no matter what other languages they speak and use as needed. ..

        • Michael Bauman says

          r.j. Exactly why the future for Orthodox does not lie in the urban centers of the east coast, nor the west but in the heartland. Between the Western Rockies and the Mississippi River. Here is where Orthodoxy will actually be planted on American soil. We can look for inspiration to the Native American and the slave religion.

      • Antiochean son, I don’t know how talk of a widower bishop qualifies as heretical. St Paul as well as St Chrysostom wrote beautifully about marriage yet were celibate. Please remember most of the apostles were married. I like to remind my Catholic friends that St Peter, who they recognize as the first Pope, was married. Marriage should not disqualify one from being a bishop.

        • Antiochene Son says

          I agree. My concern is more about the tendency among many on this blog to disqualify celibate clergy out of hand. You don’t need to personally experience something to counsel others, especially having the grace of the priesthood. Human life isn’t THAT complicated.

          I have no problem with widowed bishops, but a lot of people seem to have a problem with celibate priests.

      • Met.Joseph is and always will preside as a tool of the Syrian government. He has zero interest in any American church being established. The American converts of the mid 80’s were drafted into being foreigners as soon as it was possible. They were lied to and have adopted the lie as pastoral care.

        • Antiochene Son says

          Bearing false witness is a serious sin, Bob.

        • Bob is entitled to his opinion. However, I know a great many of these “coverts from the 80’s” who feel very differently about Met. Joseph. The vast majority find him to be a refreshing and welcome breath of fresh air, especially as compared to his predecessor.

          I would also say that since his arch-episcopate began, the content and tone of WORD magazine (to which I have subscribed for many years though I am neither Antiochian nor among the converts of that period) have shifted dramatically from being dominated by Syrian and Arab political concerns toward theology and how to live an authentic, faithful Orthodox Christian life in America.

  11. Let’s see what happens if no one replaces him for…..Ten years? Would it make a dime’s worth of difference? Maybe Twenty? We deserve a break.

  12. Veras Coltroupis says
  13. Former GOA says

    In case anyone needs to be reminded of the current spiritual state of the movers and shakers in the GOA….

    “Former Archimandrite of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America John Heropoulos, who left the holy priesthood in 2007, was married to a man on Saturday, January 9, 2016.”

    And the clincher line, at the end of the article: “Heropoulos revealed to [The National Herald] that he goes on Sundays and worships in an Orthodox church and that he receives Holy Communion. He said, ‘yes of course I go to an Orthodox church and yes I receive Holy Communion.’ ”

    There you have it, of course.

    I see a lot of comments stating that the new GOA leadership must be “Christ-centered.” Any church must **always** be Christ-centered, or it is not serving Our Lord. It’s crystal clear that so many in the higher echelons of the GOA have no idea what serving Our Lord or living the Christian life even means. Do they even bother to try? I’d venture to say that many have not been serving Our Lord for decades.

    One of the reasons I left the GOA was the complete ignorance of the importance of confession, of metanoia, of repentance, of humility, of being “transformed in the renewing of your nous” (Romans 12: 2). The GOA leadership nauseates me, and there is every reason to believe that the new GOA leadership will continue to induce nausea, until they crash and burn and must start all over from scratch, or (God forbid) need to ask their American or Slavic or Antiochian brothers in America for help. God gives humility to those who refuse to humble themselves before Him — it is the only hope for salvation.

    • Solitary Priest says

      Notice how the same folks pushing the gay agenda are also pushing this Ukrainian caper?

    • I follow the prayer mails of a greek Parish in Florida. Very good commentary on Gospels, Easter, etc. And in one way feel bad to be critical, but i see clearly the spirituality that seems to drive this priest, hard working and good, good man though he is, is clearly and totally protestant devoid of Orthodox spirituality and thought.

  14. Article has a typo, it left out the word GREEK in “Archbishop Demetrios had served for 20 years, since 1999, the Orthodox Church of America, when he succeeded the former Archbishop Spyridon.” OCA is not Greek. As a fairly new Orthodox, I was totally confused, like, the Greek Patriarch can ask an OCA Archbishop to resign? How does that work? Had to google for information.

  15. Len Contopilas says

    Interesting article:

    Seems the Gangrene Patriarch likes bioethics. Strongly suggests he will choose Nathaniel, who also studied bioethics.

  16. The resignation epistle gives ample reasons to never hear from him again. The unashamed begging to finish the ruin in NYC, his “NATIONAL SHRINE”. Please. As well as his commitment to God… and “Hellenism”. If there was a way to guarantee the next chair occupant could possibly have a sense of shame or a shred of dignity I’d like that candidate but that’s a very high bar.

    • I’ll try. A fellow was “unanimously elected” to a post that isn’t needed. It sounds like he has never done anything outside of a petri dish in his life. Metropolitan of In Vitro. You may never hear a word of the anaphora on Sunday but you certainly will hear the exclamation “Among the first remember….” ! Because otherwise he is very forgettable.

  17. Lon Calefas says

    Gay scoutmasters:
    It has been argues that much of the current torrent of abuse is the result of most Christian denominations righteously sheltering homosexuals from the nazis.