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Archbishop Lazar Puhalo

Hesychios

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Glory to Jesus Christ!

Greetings all,
Has anyone read any of the books by Archbishop Lazar Puhalo? I have recently come across a news item mentioning him as an author from Canada, a member of the OCA, possibly a convert? A quick Google took me to Synaxis Press, where they have several titles authored in his name, but I do not know anything about him at all.

I am interested to know more about him and if his materials are worth a reading. I thought you erudite individuals here could help me out!  ;D

Thanks a bunch in advance!

Michael
 

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I used his arguments against the ordination of women in a recent paper of mine, dealing with gender identity and the prophetic roles respected to each sex. It was very interesting.

On another note, he seems to be very anti-Rose on the question of Toll Houses (claiming Fr. Seraphim Rose is a gnosticizing cookoo). That is the one controversy I've seen in his works/polemics.
 

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Controversy? Nah! What's so controversial about a defrocked deacon bouncing from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, until he can finally retire in peace as an "Archbishop" in a legit Orthodox body?  8) One curious thing about Lev's beliefs is that he considered John of Kronstadt a closet homosexual who may have had affairs with men while conducting missionary work. Some of Lev's other sexual positions (no pun intended) are equally unorthodox. Just ask him, he has problems containing himself on that subject (at least he did when I spoke to him years ago), he'll probably let some cats out of the bag if you listen carefully.
 

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Be careful about accusations that you make.  Although no fan of the archbishop, I've never heard of him being a defrocked deacon.  From what I can understand, he was consecrated a bishop in the Milan synod just before that group started to become more and more vagante.
 

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Hesychios said:
Has anyone read any of the books by Archbishop Lazar Puhalo? I have recently come across a news item mentioning him as an author from Canada, a member of the OCA, possibly a convert? A quick Google took me to Synaxis Press, where they have several titles authored in his name, but I do not know anything about him at all.

I am interested to know more about him and if his materials are worth a reading. I thought you erudite individuals here could help me out!  ;D
I've glanced at his books from time to time.  I know that some people like them.  From what little I can remember, I found them kind of odd.  I don't remember why. 

Unlike several people on this forum, I am no great fan of Fr Seraphim Rose.  However, I find the almost vindictive way in which the archbishop attacks Fr Seraphim's ideas about toll houses to be kind of strange.

Archbishop Lazar was for a long time in canonical limbo until he was received as a retired archbishop in the OCA. 
 

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Pravoslavbob said:
From what I can understand, he was consecrated a bishop in the Milan synod just before that group started to become more and more vagante.
The Milan Synod is non-Canonical status church in communion with the Old Calendarists how is that vagante?
 

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The guys real name is Ron Haler IIRC.  He was defrocked and laicized by the ROCOR for some reason (he was a deacon).  Then I think he bounced around.  I'm not sure how he ended up in the OCA or why they made him an archbishop.  I would think that's actually going to be an issue if the MP and ROCOR patch things up.

I don't know about his books or theology in great detail, but he has some weird ideas in general.  He believes for instance that the United States and the World Trade Organization would like to take over Canada and are engaged in a conspiracy to do so.

http://friendsoffreedom.org/article.php?sid=80

He also believes that NATO is a front organization for the "New World Order" that is run by America with intent to enslave other nations.

http://www.freerepublic.com/forum/a376572db6551.htm

Sadly the Antiochians have given the guy a platform at a recent meeting of theirs (on top of letting in the OCL).

Bad news in my opinion.  What I have read of him leads me to believe he is of the Anti-Western Orthodox (not the rite) ilk.
 

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Pravoslavbob said:
Be careful about accusations that you make.  Although no fan of the archbishop, I've never heard of him being a defrocked deacon.  From what I can understand, he was consecrated a bishop in the Milan synod just before that group started to become more and more vagante.
It's true that he was defrocked by ROCOR.  Do a google search on Lev Puhalo and it will turn up.

He was in fact ordained by the Milan Synod which is why the OCA received him as a bishop. And yes, within a few years they were quite off the wall.
 

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alexp4uni said:
The Milan Synod is non-Canonical status church in communion with the Old Calendarists how is that vagante?
They are NOT in communion with the Old Calendarist Church of Greece; they have fallen into vagante status because they have started taking in Old Catholic bishops without ordination, have a bishop that is a 3rd order carmelite in the RCC at the same time, etc etc etc.  Vagante and Old Calendarist are very different animals with differing aims and circumstances.

To reiterate, the Milan Synod came from the Old Calendarist Church but quickly after separating from the Synod fell into vaganteism.

Anastasios
 

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This has been gone over before here - http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,146.msg1639.html#msg1639

The theological issues of 'the former Deacon, Lev Puhalo' are discussed online at http://www.orthodoxinfo.com/death/tollhouse_debate.aspx (noting, I don't recommend everything on that site.) The matter is from Orthodox Life , 1981.

That OCA received him is still baffling in part (only in the suggestion that some spite to ROCOR might have been intended) - but he was received as retired (without the active ministry of a bishop) he still travels to teach the same things. It was the Serbs who ordained him to the priesthood in 1981 immediately after he was defrocked and laicized by ROCOR. He had left them within the decade, and was made bishop by the Milan Synod in 1990. (According to a number of my bishops, Milan Synod was already considered vagante at this time.) He left them to be an Archbishop for the 'UOC-KP', another group considered vagante before OCA finally received him. The point though, even if he is received he is *retired* as the canons require for a bishop returning from heretics or schismatics (they would be received as either retired bishops, or archimandrites/archpriests without the ability to ever be an active bishop again.) The same happened with Fr. Alexander Turner - he was in the OCCA under the Metropolia in the early '30s, then made Bishop by Bp. Ignatius Nichols after they had split from the Church. When Fr. Alexander returned the Clerks of St. Basil to the Church by Antioch, he was made a mitred archpriest which he remained until his death. So, the manner of Lazar Puhalo's reception could be seen in that light. The irregularity I think is that it wasn't a return to that part of the Church with which he had his disagreement.
 

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I heard he was ordained a hieromonk by the FREE Serbs.  His theology is weird yet he has credibility with a lot of fringe people.
 

Anastasios

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observer said:
I heard he was ordained a hieromonk by the FREE Serbs.  His theology is weird yet he has credibility with a lot of fringe people.
Deacon: ROCOR
Priest: Free Serbs
Bishop: Portuguese Milan Synod ex-Old Calendarist bishops
Possible stint in local GOC group of Paisios in 1996
Stint with Steve of the UAOC-Sobornopravna
Archbishop: Kiev Patriarchate
Retired: OCA
 

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Anastasios said:
It's true that he was defrocked by ROCOR.  Do a google search on Lev Puhalo and it will turn up.
All I found was people on the e-cafe asserting that he was defrocked by ROCOR.  This qualifies as hearsay, as far as I am concerned, but if you want to post a link that shows clearly he was defrocked, that would be fine.  Serge (the young fogey), had stated in the 2002 thread that he was suspended by ROCOR, and not defrocked.
 

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I've met the Bishop once and like him and his writings very much. He was defrocked because, to be blunt, he "wouldn't shut up about the toll house issue." He argues the Toll houses are gnostic (see other forums). ROCOR, in the midst of this debate stated that issue of the Toll houses was a "theological opinion" and left it at that. Instead of letting the issue then "die" (so to speak) the deacon continued his arguments against the Toll Houses and was disciplined by being laicized.

As an english speaking Orthodox, one thing I really admire about him is his promotion of a Canadian English Orthodoxy.

He is not perfect, and either was Fr. Seraphim Rose.

Basil
 

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bobba,

If you googlel it you will find a bit. If you don't trust poor justin and.or dustin then try contactin rocor directly an askin them. He was defrocked. Deal with it ;)  Love ya

J
 

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He was defrocked because, to be blunt, he "wouldn't shut up about the toll house issue."
I don't understand the whole "toll house" thing, and my impression is it may be just some folk myth people are working themselves up about.  Regardless "Archbishop" Lazar was defrocked, and made the rounds with schismatic and apparently vagante groups.  The OCA took a defrocked deacon and made him not only a priest, but an Archbishop.  I don't know what they're thinking, nor do I understand why anyone would give such a person a platform to speak like the AOA is doing.

Now what will happen when the MP and ROCOR reconcile is anyone's guess, but I don't see how they could actually restore relations with the OCA considering they gave a defrocked and laicized deacon his faculties as a priest.  Same thing for the priest in the ROCOR who was defrocked by Metropolitan Herman when his parish would not accept the calendar change that was being forced on them by the then Bishop of Eastern Pa.
 

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It's not really that important to me on a personal level if he was defrocked or not.  It's just that the only proof I've seen of it is the semi-contradictory "say so" of internet posters on a few boards.  With all due respect to you, Welkodox, one reason why I say that it's kind of contradictory is because "laicized" is not really the same as  "defrocked."  A laicized cleric becomes a layman because he requests it.  A "defrocked" cleric is basically someone who is removed from the list of clergy against their will, as far as I know.  I guess this could possibly make quite a difference politically and administratively.  Some people say that archbishop Lazar was laicized, and some that he was defrocked.   Correct me if I am wrong, but I don't think it can be both.  Sorry, I'm not trying to split hairs.

I'm sure that he could well have had one or the other thing happen to him, and neither one is good.   Very possibly he was defrocked and there is simply no concrete evidence on the internet available. 
 

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Indeed there is a distinction which you are right to point out.  To me it still doesn't answer the question of:

Why the OCA took him in and gave him his faculties.
What this will do to ROCOR/OCA relations (including the issue of the other priest now in ROCOR).
Why other Orthodox groups are providing a platform for such a divisive personality in seminars ostensibly geared towards fostering unity.

I'm scratchin' me head.
 
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God bless!+

This "Archbishop" is not only against Blessed Father Seraphim and his "gnostic" teachinng of the Toll Houses, he is against many many Saints and Elders of the orthodox church!

The teaching is not a folk myth, or gnostic it is an important, ancient ,traditional teaching of the pan-orthodox church and everyone can proof this!

You have to read and study the church fathers and you will come across often about this issue!

it is mentioned in the scripture
Saint Makarios,
Saint Athanasius the great mentioned it in the live of St, Antonius
Sain Basil the new (Blessed Theodora, Blessed Gregory his disciple)
Martyr Taxiotis
Saint Theophan the Recluse
Saint Ignatios or russia
Saint Justin of Serbia
St. Nikolaj of Zica
in the Philokalie
in the Evergentinos
Prolog of Ohrid
in the famous monastery of Rila in frescos are shown all 20 Stations
...............

And everyone who do not agree with him is guilty of sexual realtions or a heretic or gnostic!

I know some old calendarians from greece and usa and they all believe in the Toll houses!

In CHRIST
 

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Lazar believes in Evolution. I won't even dignify him with the title of Archbishop.
 

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Apotheon said:
Lazar believes in Evolution. I won't even dignify him with the title of Archbishop.
apotheon

One who is exalted or elevated to a state of godhood

A scholar of the apotheonic

An enlightened being.
 

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Hesychios said:
Glory to Jesus Christ!

Has anyone read any of the books by Archbishop Lazar Puhalo?
I have read "For A Culture of Co-suffering Love" (Archive Publications) written by Andrew Sopko as part of a series synopsizing various theologians' beliefs, and "The Icon as Scripture," by Puhalo, as well as a number of his articles.   I find him a wonderful blend of creative intellectual thought with respect and mindfulness of the Holy Fathers and Mothers.  He is a person for our age, when so much of Orthodoxy's aspect to the World consists of clerics throwing punches and disparaging one another, even in the Tomb of our Lord itself.   If you are an educated person trying to be Orthodox in the world, this well-rounded author will present interesting solutions to some problems you may face, especially if you work and are knowledgeable in any scientific or technological field.  He, at least, tries to speak the truth in love.

{Edit - fixed quote box - Cleveland, Global Moderator}
 

Fr. George

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^ Serafima,

Christ is Risen!

Welcome to the Forum!
 

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i think he's ridiculous. if the toll-houses are Gnostic then we have Gnostic church services and prayers. he attacks the Sainthood of Augustine, he refuses to accept the Patristic understanding of Genesis, the list goes on and on. and he has never been a real archbishop. you can read Letters from Fr. Seraphim by Fr. Alexey Young to see some of the trouble they had with him when he was in ROCOR. its ridiculous.
 

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jckstraw72 said:
i think he's ridiculous. if the toll-houses are Gnostic then we have Gnostic church services and prayers. he attacks the Sainthood of Augustine, he refuses to accept the Patristic understanding of Genesis, the list goes on and on. and he has never been a real archbishop. you can read Letters from Fr. Seraphim by Fr. Alexey Young to see some of the trouble they had with him when he was in ROCOR. its ridiculous.
::)  Why am I not surprised that you find the Archbishop so objectionable, when you have just gone out of your way to revive this dormant thread about him and Fr. Seraphim Rose at almost precisely the same time, and are full of nothing but effusive praise for the work of Fr. Seraphim? Oh, and before you think that I am anti-Fr. Seraphim through-and-through, please note my post from some time ago on this thread:

Pravoslavbob said:
I've glanced at his books from time to time.  I know that some people like them.  From what little I can remember, I found them kind of odd.  I don't remember why. 

Unlike several people on this forum, I am no great fan of Fr Seraphim Rose.  However, I find the almost vindictive way in which the archbishop attacks Fr Seraphim's ideas about toll houses to be kind of strange.

Archbishop Lazar was for a long time in canonical limbo until he was received as a retired archbishop in the OCA. 
....he refuses to accept the Patristic understanding of Genesis...
Oh, you mean that he does not agree with Fr. Seraphim's rather strange teachings on evolution?

....he attacks the sainthood of Augustine...
Lots of Orthodox have problems with St. Augustine on various levels.  Some do not.  I have to admit that I am not familiar with Archbishop Lazar's arguments, but just because you are absolutely convinced by Fr. Seraphim's support for St. Augustine it does not mean that everyone has to agree with your opinion or that of Fr. Seraphim. 


 

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[Oh, you mean that he does not agree with Fr. Seraphim's rather strange teachings on evolution?]

no, i mean: "he refuses to accept the Patristic understanding of Genesis"

[Lots of Orthodox have problems with St. Augustine on various levels]

and yet he remains a Saint, which Abp. Puhalo doesnt seem to realize.

[Why am I not surprised that you find the Archbishop so objectionable, when you have just gone out of your way to revive this dormant thread about him and Fr. Seraphim Rose at almost precisely the same time, and are full of nothing but effusive praise for the work of Fr. Seraphim?]

God forbid I comment on threads that interest me.
 

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Archbishop Lazar thinks there's a Gnostic boogyman around every corner. The man needs to be medicated for his paranoia.
 

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Apologist117 said:
Archbishop Lazar thinks there's a Gnostic boogyman around every corner. The man needs to be medicated for his paranoia.
He could be right. ;)
 

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If one reads his biography on Orthodox Wiki, one finds that he has been mostly an opinionated monastic, who got in trouble for speaking his mind and stirring the pot. As a famous saying goes, nobody is perfect all of the time and I think folks should cut him some slack. I like Archbishop Lazar even though I don't agree with him on some things. I especially like his pursuit of "superstitions that corrupt the faith" (http://orthodoxy21.blogspot.com/).
 

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I'd have to weigh in with Second Chance on this one. I also tend to appreciate Abp Lazar's writings (although I do not necessarily subscribe to everything he writes). I also have problems with Seraphim Rose's take on the toll houses and Blessed Augustine. I'm just curious why this old thread has been resurrected. ???
 

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Douglas said:
I'd have to weigh in with Second Chance on this one. I also tend to appreciate Abp Lazar's writings (although I do not necessarily subscribe to everything he writes). I also have problems with Seraphim Rose's take on the toll houses and Blessed Augustine. I'm just curious why this old thread has been resurrected. ???
Because jckstraw72 got tired of debating creationism vs. evolution and started attacking hierarchs that disagree with him??
 

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Douglas said:
I'd have to weigh in with Second Chance on this one. I also tend to appreciate Abp Lazar's writings (although I do not necessarily subscribe to everything he writes). I also have problems with Seraphim Rose's take on the toll houses and Blessed Augustine. I'm just curious why this old thread has been resurrected. ???
Resurrected? Why not? It's here for people to post comments. I disagree with Father Seraphim about Augustine. The latter was a Manichean, a heresy essentially rooted in Gnosticism. Augustine is the cause of the schism and all western heresies.
 

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Ukiemeister said:
Douglas said:
I'd have to weigh in with Second Chance on this one. I also tend to appreciate Abp Lazar's writings (although I do not necessarily subscribe to everything he writes). I also have problems with Seraphim Rose's take on the toll houses and Blessed Augustine. I'm just curious why this old thread has been resurrected. ???
Because jckstraw72 got tired of debating creationism vs. evolution and started attacking hierarchs that disagree with him??
Ah... I see now. Thanks.
 

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Ukiemeister said:
Douglas said:
I'd have to weigh in with Second Chance on this one. I also tend to appreciate Abp Lazar's writings (although I do not necessarily subscribe to everything he writes). I also have problems with Seraphim Rose's take on the toll houses and Blessed Augustine. I'm just curious why this old thread has been resurrected. ???
Because jckstraw72 got tired of debating creationism vs. evolution and started attacking hierarchs that disagree with him??
or perhaps because when i commented on this thread i was fairly new to the site, and thus i went through and found threads that were interesting to me and i commented in them. but your theory is fun too.
 

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Sorry to re-resurrect this thread, but I recently watched one of his Youtube videos on Aerial Tollhouses... I have to say that he makes some questionable statements in it. One of the first, is he accuses some Orthodox Christians of being heretics for believing in certain things, among them being the toll-houses. He also goes on to mention Origen and Augustine by saying neither are Church Fathers. I know Origen is not a church father, but Augustine is a Church Father in the Orthodox Church, and was mentioned with the other Church Fathers in the 5th Ecumenical Council.

After reading up on Augustine to make sure he is a Church Father in the Orthodox Church, I noticed that Fr. Seraphim Rose wrote a book on Blessed Augustine and the view of him in the Orthodox Church.

I'm sorry, but it seems to me that Archbishop Lazar Puhalo is really walking dangerously. I'm sure it's just a coincidence, but it makes me wonder if his dislike of Augustine is because of his dislike for Fr. Seraphim Rose.

I also find it very hard to believe that I'm hearing someone, especially at his level accusing Orthodox Christians, and also Fr. Seraphim Rose (although indirectly) of heresy and of being heretics. Is that not the Church's decision to make and not his?

Forgive me if I'm overstepping my boundaries but this really bothered me...
 

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Why should it bother you so much? Abp Lazar is entitled to his opinion... I happen to agree and I'm entitled to mine... and you're entitled to your opinion. And in the final analysis, that's all it all boils down to: opinions.
 

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I know, I believe that good, Orthodox people can disagree on things... What bothers me is his accusations of heresy and actually calling them out as heretics.
 
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