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Board votes to relocate St Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary; Location to be determined

Ainnir

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All, please stay somewhat on topic, and if you find controversial issues are related to this subject, go ahead and start a spinoff in Religious Topics/Nonreligious Topics. The spinoff can be found here.
Thanks. --Ainnir
 

Ainnir

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And I will add that I probably should have used more emojis as was my habit a few years ago, but my "vote" was largely tongue-in-cheek, though I don't share the same reservations about the suggestion as others do.
 

Menas17

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It’s what we politely call a backwards place.
Have you been to Texas? I would hardly call Austin, Dallas or Houston backwards. Unless you’re referring to all of them being Democrat run and that’s what makes them backwards.
Rural Texas is no more backward than rural New York, California, etc.
 

kijabeboy03

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To address the growing need for priests and other vocations in the Orthodox Church, the Board of Trustees of St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary (SVOTS) has voted to relocate SVOTS from its current location in Yonkers, NY. The new location and the timing of the move have yet to be determined
When I first learned about St. Vladimir's Seminary I remember having the impression that it was internationally fairly well known in Orthodox circles, even renowned...at least in the countries where I had grown up. Now things have gotten to where they're considering a move to Texas...
 

Ariend

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When I first learned about St. Vladimir's Seminary I remember having the impression that it was internationally fairly well known in Orthodox circles, even renowned...at least in the countries where I had grown up. Now things have gotten to where they're considering a move to Texas...
Texas is worse than New York City?
 

copticorthodoxboy

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Why move to Texas when you can move to Hawaii?
Having lived in Hawaii (Oahu) for 4.5 years, I don't think this is a good idea.

The cost of living is no joke. Rent is quite expensive for what you pay for and the majority of housing doesn't have air conditioning (and yes, you do need it); groceries are insanely expensive (commissary closed down for about a week due to a government shut down while I was there; if I recall correctly a gallon of milk was like 9 dollars, a can of Campbell's soup was like 6 out in town); taxes are super high and racism is also a real thing there (certain parts of Oahu should be avoided if you are of European decent).

Island Fever (a feeling of isolation and/or being trapped on a tiny island) is also a real thing; the mainland is 5 hours away by flight and flying back is expensive.

Traffic, specifically on Oahu, is a nightmare and the state has really poor public transportation options (and a highly corrupt local government).

I suppose if they could go to the Big Island or Maui they could avoid some of the negative aspects of the state but in my opinion: Hawaii is a great place to visit and vacation at, not an ideal place to live long-term.
 

ICXCNIKA

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I vote for either Lincoln, Nebraska or to start attending institutions in Russia.
 

MarkosC

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Lots of good points in this thread. I'd just add.....

Beyond cost of living for staff, property costs, maintainence, etc (all of which would be substantially lower even in the Houston area, to say nothing somewhere further out in Texas), the Houston airport has a huge number of direct domestic and (at least for the US) international flights. This includes many of the major ones - London, Paris, Frankfurt, Dubai, Constantinople/Istanbul. The only ones that would be bigger would be major East/West coastal cities: LA, SF, NY, DC which would have effectively the same problems as Yonkers. (in fact, the way the transporation system is from JFK or La Guardia, one might say that one could get from Paris to a hypothetical campus 30 minutes away from IAH in the same time it'd take you to get from Paris to Yonkers via JFK....... :D )

PGH would also be good, especially if you weren't concerned about direct international flights. The Puget Sound area is an interesting idea (for the reasons given) but still has the high cost of living. Along that line, perhaps a monastery could be started in Texas.
  • with the caveat that eparchial-founded monasteries, vice more bottom-up monasteries, IME don't tend to grow terribly well. Further, if I were the Igumenos I'd be hesitant to have huge numbers of visitors of diverse levels of maturity and formation transiting through all the time. It was a problem at Meteora, IME it's a problem with the Athonite monastries even with the extensive controls set in place, and it would be very hard on a newer community in a country without extensive monastic roots, it seems to me.

(quick anecdote: first time I saw an Aeroflot flight was an IL-76 at Houston. So I thought even Aeroflot had direct service, but at least as of today it does not - and besides the IL-76 was clearly a charter cargo flight, especially since wikipedia states they no longer have IL-76s)
 

MarkosC

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Having lived in Hawaii (Oahu) for 4.5 years, I don't think this is a good idea.

The cost of living is no joke. Rent is quite expensive for what you pay for and the majority of housing doesn't have air conditioning (and yes, you do need it); groceries are insanely expensive (commissary closed down for about a week due to a government shut down while I was there; if I recall correctly a gallon of milk was like 9 dollars, a can of Campbell's soup was like 6 out in town); taxes are super high and racism is also a real thing there (certain parts of Oahu should be avoided if you are of European decent).

Island Fever (a feeling of isolation and/or being trapped on a tiny island) is also a real thing; the mainland is 5 hours away by flight and flying back is expensive.

Traffic, specifically on Oahu, is a nightmare and the state has really poor public transportation options (and a highly corrupt local government).

I suppose if they could go to the Big Island or Maui they could avoid some of the negative aspects of the state but in my opinion: Hawaii is a great place to visit and vacation at, not an ideal place to live long-term.
I know the proposal was not terribly serious, but concur with this. Oahu has a very high cost of living and it's fairly far away even from the US West Coast - to say nothing of the rest of the world. My only caveat is that some people do just get the opposite form of island fever and never leave........ :D

A flippant idea I always had would be a monastery on the Kona Coast of the Big Island (easily one of my favorite places in the US)- but the monks would need to be very self sufficient because even getting like plumbing help there can be very difficult. Or the flip side, if they were very self sufficient, they could make a killing if they decided to fund the monastery as handymen....
 

Menas17

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Texas to me seems the mostly likely, or at least somewhere in the Southern states. I say this mostly due to COL, etc., but, also growth both in general and in Orthodoxy.

The sunbelt states are growing rapidly from people leaving the NE (mostly rust belt). This is fueling growth in Orthodoxy in the South through relocation but also more importantly through conversions. SVOTS provides many/most priests for the OCA and I would argue that the OCA Diocese of the South is the shining start of the OCA.
 

copticorthodoxboy

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I know the proposal was not terribly serious, but concur with this. Oahu has a very high cost of living and it's fairly far away even from the US West Coast - to say nothing of the rest of the world. My only caveat is that some people do just get the opposite form of island fever and never leave........ :D

A flippant idea I always had would be a monastery on the Kona Coast of the Big Island (easily one of my favorite places in the US)- but the monks would need to be very self sufficient because even getting like plumbing help there can be very difficult. Or the flip side, if they were very self sufficient, they could make a killing if they decided to fund the monastery as handymen....
Of the three islands I visited while living there, the Big Island was my favorite. Was attached to Pearl Harbor Hickam's Honors and Ceremonies division for a few months while stationed out there and had the chance to fly to the Big Island a few times for funeral services. The climate was a bit more comfortable compared to Oahu (to me at least) and the locals were quite friendly (I should mention that I never experienced any hostility from locals while living in Oahu; had and still have many friends from the Islands).

To my knowledge there are only three Orthodox parishes in the state, all on Oahu (1 ROCOR, 1 GOA, and 1 Coptic and I would assume with the current Greek/Russian schism none of these parishes are in communion with one another). Still, a monastery on the Big Island would be neat.
 
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