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Fr. Robert Arida and homosexuality

rakovsky

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Mor Ephrem said:
rakovsky said:
I want to clarify that for me this is becoming for the sake of argument.

Fr. Arida writes on p. 1:

To  diminish  this  most  fundamental aspect  of  Orthodox  thought  and  life  is  nothing  less  than  a  distortion  of  the  Gospel. Yet,  as  will  be  pointed  out,  this  is  precisely  what  is  occurring  in  the  Orthodox Church here  and  abroad.  A  “new  and  alien spirit”  is  displacing  the  authentic  voice  of  the Gospel.The  voice  of  Christ  is  being  weakened  by  the  voice  of  philosophical  and ethical  systems.  
Here Fr. Arida claims that the Gospel is being distorted in the Orthodox church and a new and alien spirit is replacing the gospel's voice. An ethical system, which he later relates to the rejection of a certain sex orientation is, he claims, weakening Christ's voice. Such a passage by Arida is going against the Church and against its ethical system that opposes homosexuality.
Where?
And what do you think the particular ethical system is that he is referring to that he thinks is weakening Christ's voice?

Later, on p. 4, He lists a set of particular issues: "the Church can no longer ignore or condemn questions and issues that are presumed to contradict or challenge its living Tradition. Among  the  most  controversial  of  these  issues  are  those  related  to  human  sexuality"

The only ethical issues that he lists are those on page 4, so presumptively that is what he is talking about.
 

Opus118

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rakovsky said:
Mor Ephrem said:
rakovsky said:
I want to clarify that for me this is becoming for the sake of argument.

Fr. Arida writes on p. 1:

To  diminish  this  most  fundamental aspect  of  Orthodox  thought  and  life  is  nothing  less  than  a  distortion  of  the  Gospel. Yet,  as  will  be  pointed  out,  this  is  precisely  what  is  occurring  in  the  Orthodox Church here  and  abroad.  A  “new  and  alien spirit”  is  displacing  the  authentic  voice  of  the Gospel.The  voice  of  Christ  is  being  weakened  by  the  voice  of  philosophical  and ethical  systems.  
Here Fr. Arida claims that the Gospel is being distorted in the Orthodox church and a new and alien spirit is replacing the gospel's voice. An ethical system, which he later relates to the rejection of a certain sex orientation is, he claims, weakening Christ's voice. Such a passage by Arida is going against the Church and against its ethical system that opposes homosexuality.
Where?
And what do you think the particular ethical system is that he is referring to that he thinks is weakening Christ's voice?

Later, on p. 4, He lists a set of particular issues: "the Church can no longer ignore or condemn questions and issues that are presumed to contradict or challenge its living Tradition. Among  the  most   controversial   of   these   issues   are   those   related   to   human   sexuality"

The only ethical issues that he lists are those on page 4, so presumptively that is what he is talking about.
Page 1 -
"I want to stress that this essay has one goal – to encourage the reader to raise questions and not to fall prey to the fiction that all questions pertaining to God, human life and culture have been already raised and answered in the past."

I have a different take from what you are reading into the text and this is not the time to get into it.  Sex is one of the issues - but if we think we should be scapegoating the homosexuals - we lose site of the real problem which is primarily heterosexual in nature. I now limit myself to Disney type movies for children and some anime when I see a new movie and how young children have to deal with sex issues because it is all over the place and cannot be hidden, to give you an idea of what I am talking about. To me this is a political/economic issue as well.
 

Mor Ephrem

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rakovsky said:
Mor Ephrem said:
rakovsky said:
I want to clarify that for me this is becoming for the sake of argument.

Fr. Arida writes on p. 1:

To  diminish  this  most  fundamental aspect  of  Orthodox  thought  and  life  is  nothing  less  than  a  distortion  of  the  Gospel. Yet,  as  will  be  pointed  out,  this  is  precisely  what  is  occurring  in  the  Orthodox Church here  and  abroad.  A  “new  and  alien spirit”  is  displacing  the  authentic  voice  of  the Gospel.The  voice  of  Christ  is  being  weakened  by  the  voice  of  philosophical  and ethical  systems.  
Here Fr. Arida claims that the Gospel is being distorted in the Orthodox church and a new and alien spirit is replacing the gospel's voice. An ethical system, which he later relates to the rejection of a certain sex orientation is, he claims, weakening Christ's voice. Such a passage by Arida is going against the Church and against its ethical system that opposes homosexuality.
Where?
And what do you think the particular ethical system is that he is referring to that he thinks is weakening Christ's voice?

Later, on p. 4, He lists a set of particular issues: "the Church can no longer ignore or condemn questions and issues that are presumed to contradict or challenge its living Tradition. Among  the  most   controversial   of   these   issues   are   those   related   to   human   sexuality"

The only ethical issues that he lists are those on page 4, so presumptively that is what he is talking about.
Rakovsky,

I think at least one of the "philosophical and ethical systems" he had in mind is a type of "Christianity" which is based on rules: rules for living and behaving that are imposed on people by an authority, whose authority derives from the authority itself, and which, if followed, guarantee a particular outcome--in this case, salvation.  But rules are not the be-all-and-end-all of Christianity. 

If someone confides in me that they identify as a homosexual and commit homosexual acts and ask why the Church disapproves, I can absolutely tell them "the Church prohibits it because Scripture prohibits it, we can't change that, but you can change yourself, and you better or else you can't have fellowship with us and, by the way, you're going to burn in hell".  None of those claims is wrong according to our tradition: the Church follows the Scriptures, we have no authority to change them, people are called to conversion of life, and unless we repent we will not inherit the kingdom of God.  But at the end of the day, all I've done is strung together some theological bullet points to back up the rule I am imposing: "gay sex is a no-no".

Christ didn't do that.  In Mt 19, when the Pharisees ask him about divorce, Jesus doesn't respond by giving them new laws.  He explains what God's intent has always been and why they had the law they were asking about.  He reorients the discussion.  He does the same in the Sermon on the Mount: by saying "You have heard it said X but I say to you Y", he's not making new commandments, he's explaining the underlying intent of the laws they had. 

So when someone confides in me that they identify as a homosexual and commit homosexual acts and ask why the Church disapproves, why shouldn't I reorient the discussion?  Rather than jump in to "gay sex is a no-no and cut it out before you burn in hell", why shouldn't I offer a comprehensive vision of who and what man is, what his place is in God's creation, why God created him in his image and likeness, as male and female, what all that means and how it all relates, how and why he fell, who Christ is, what he did for us in order to raise us up from that fall, how he enables us to live according to God's original intent and not according to our brokenness, etc.? 

If we can move the discussion away from whether or not it's legitimate to have two penises in such close proximity and toward a healthy understanding of God, of humanity, and of human sexuality, all in the light of Christ, not only will we get to "gay sex is a no-no"**, but we will get there in a larger context in which it makes more sense, and even repentance is reoriented away from "don't have gay sex or you'll go to hell" and toward "how can I live Christ's life in my own life, what does that look like in practical terms, and why is this a better life for me to live?" 

As I read Fr Arida's article, that's all I think he was advocating: moving away from simply parroting rules based on authority and do the hard work of preaching the gospel, which means introducing people to a wholly different vision of life and working with them to help them accept it and live it if they choose to accept it.  People can get rules anywhere they want.  They will only get Christ through the Church.       





**In my limited understanding of theology and theological anthropology, we will get to this conclusion.  Maybe those who read Fr Arida's article differently are not so sure that we will get there.  If that is their fear, they have a lot more to worry about than anything Fr Arida said in that article.  They need to re-evaluate who and what they believe in and why.
 

rakovsky

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What you and Mor are proposing Christians discuss and question is fine. I myself see the issue of sexuality mainly as a psychology one that deals with health and disorders. But if I read critically some sentences Fr. Arida wrote, then he is making inferences that go against the church. The Church's position is not a new and alien spirit. I am sure that for many centuries going back to St Paul both approaches you describe have existed- there have been Christians who took a very plain, straightforward rejection of homosexual acts and there have been those who make a deeper explanation in their rejection of it.

For example, he openly takes up a position against what he sees as a new process in our Orthodox thought:
To  diminish  this  most  fundamental aspect  of  Orthodox  thought  and  life  is  nothing  less  than  a  distortion  of  the  Gospel. Yet,  as  will  be  pointed  out, this  is  precisely  what  is  occurring  in  the  Orthodox Church here  and  abroad.  A  “new  and  alien    spirit”  is  displacing  the  authentic  voice  of  the Gospel.
But I think that this is not a new, alien process but one that has been here since St Paul's time, if not in the Gospel itself. Jesus seemed to sometimes take a pretty straightforward rejection of some sins like abusing children, with his words about the millstone. I think that both an "explanatory" spirit (like you advocate) and a straightforward one have been around since early Christianity.

I don't know that it's worth me harping on this, since it seems to be something others understand (eg. the reply to Fr. Arida by another priest about Episcopalians) and anyway, like I said, sexuality disorders seem to me to be fundamentally a psychological issue.
 

Mor Ephrem

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rakovsky said:
But if I read ritically some sentences Fr. Arida wrote, then he is making inferences that go against the church. The Church's position is not a new and alien spirit.
I don't think Fr Arida's critics have made the case for this interpretation of his writing.
 

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Mor,

Fr. Robert is laying the ground work (or planting seeds) for the Church's acceptance of committed homosexual relations, where gay couples can approach the Chalice with a clear conscience. It's that simple, although he won't come right out and say that in black and white. Fr. Robert is a very intelligent and capable priest - he knows exactly what he is doing and he wrote the article in this fashion for a very specific and intentional reason.

Your reading of the article is playing right into his hand. Those familiar with Fr. Robert and who know the Boston Cathedral know exactly what he is up to. And it is not good.
 

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Yes Mor, you are a mere pawn in the grasp of the diabolical Fr. Robert.

 

Mor Ephrem

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Twenty Nine said:
Mor,

Fr. Robert is laying the ground work (or planting seeds) for the Church's acceptance of committed homosexual relations, where gay couples can approach the Chalice with a clear conscience. It's that simple, although he won't come right out and say that in black and white. Fr. Robert is a very intelligent and capable priest - he knows exactly what he is doing and he wrote the article in this fashion for a very specific and intentional reason.

Your reading of the article is playing right into his hand. Those familiar with Fr. Robert and who know the Boston Cathedral know exactly what he is up to. And it is not good.
Then I suppose his opponents want to lynch gays.  Or maybe they want to be "rid of that turbulent priest".  Laying the ground work or planting seeds and all that.
 

scamandrius

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Mor Ephrem said:
rakovsky said:
But if I read ritically some sentences Fr. Arida wrote, then he is making inferences that go against the church. The Church's position is not a new and alien spirit.
I don't think Fr Arida's critics have made the case for this interpretation of his writing.
I took the "new and alien spirit" to refer to converts who, in his mind, didn't shed all or enough of their Protestant baggage when swimming the Bosporus.
 

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Mor Ephrem said:
Twenty Nine said:
Mor,

Fr. Robert is laying the ground work (or planting seeds) for the Church's acceptance of committed homosexual relations, where gay couples can approach the Chalice with a clear conscience. It's that simple, although he won't come right out and say that in black and white. Fr. Robert is a very intelligent and capable priest - he knows exactly what he is doing and he wrote the article in this fashion for a very specific and intentional reason.

Your reading of the article is playing right into his hand. Those familiar with Fr. Robert and who know the Boston Cathedral know exactly what he is up to. And it is not good.
Then I suppose his opponents want to lynch gays.  Or maybe they want to be "rid of that turbulent priest".  Laying the ground work or planting seeds and all that.
Mor,

That does not follow. Why are you reverting to fallacy? Is your argument that lacking?

What good are you serving as an apologist for someone who challenges established Orthodox teaching, which is affirmed by the moderators of orthodoxchristianity.net?

I understand that being disputatious is entertaining, but why defend heterodoxy? Honest question.
 

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Mor Ephrem said:
Then I suppose his opponents want to lynch gays.  Or maybe they want to be "rid of that turbulent priest".  Laying the ground work or planting seeds and all that.
I hope you are not serious. Fr. Robert is a very good priest and certainly a man of the Church. He has contributed a great deal of good things to the OCA. The OCA Synod ought to be very careful and serious about how they handle this.

No one wants to "lynch gays". We ought to take these discussions seriously. It is not a joke. Considering the fact that Fr. Robert is a very good priest and is influential, it is very sad and troubling that he would write an article like this.
 

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Maybe I'm not following this close enough, but the article doesn't say anything about supporting gay marriage in the church. Instead, people are arguing that he is making veiled references to as to subvert the faithful.  Now, you are saying that he is a very good priest and a man of the Church?  Which one is it? Is he a stealthy subverter of truth or a guy who wrote a rather vague article that people are reading into and getting all up in arms about?
 

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scamandrius said:
Mor Ephrem said:
rakovsky said:
But if I read ritically some sentences Fr. Arida wrote, then he is making inferences that go against the church. The Church's position is not a new and alien spirit.
I don't think Fr Arida's critics have made the case for this interpretation of his writing.
I took the "new and alien spirit" to refer to converts who, in his mind, didn't shed all or enough of their Protestant baggage when swimming the Bosporus.
The irony is that a lot of us former Anglicans left our Protestant church precisely because it strayed from Holy Tradition on issues such as homosexuality. Would Fr. Arida really have minded if I bought my pro-homosexual Protestant baggage to Orthodoxy?
 

rakovsky

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Twenty Nine said:
Mor,

Fr. Robert is laying the ground work (or planting seeds) for the Church's acceptance of committed homosexual relations, where gay couples can approach the Chalice with a clear conscience. It's that simple, although he won't come right out and say that in black and white. Fr. Robert is a very intelligent and capable priest - he knows exactly what he is doing and he wrote the article in this fashion for a very specific and intentional reason.

Your reading of the article is playing right into his hand. Those familiar with Fr. Robert and who know the Boston Cathedral know exactly what he is up to. And it is not good.
Yes, see I think that you are actually correct. He is putting out feelers on the topic, and complaining about those who verbally assault those they "presume" to be immoral. So what kind of presumed "immorality" is he talking about, and why does he call it just "presumed"? What are the "controversial issues" that he is talking about? But he does not focus his article on making a full broadside on Orthodoxy, but rather typically couches it in terms of "questioning".

 

rakovsky

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TheTrisagion said:
Maybe I'm not following this close enough, but the article doesn't say anything about supporting gay marriage in the church. Instead, people are arguing that he is making veiled references to as to subvert the faithful.  Now, you are saying that he is a very good priest and a man of the Church?  Which one is it? Is he a stealthy subverter of truth or a guy who wrote a rather vague article that people are reading into and getting all up in arms about?
Most of what he wrote in the article was good. Like Mor said, he wants a discussion about the church's position on "controversial issues". So he should pose precise questions about the issues he wants to discuss, like "Are gay acts acceptable to the church?" And, as he wants, the church or a bishop should respond by explaining the reasons for its position in the way Mor suggested.

The problem, from an Orthodox POV, that I saw was with a handful of sentences which together suggest that he doesn't agree with the church's position on the morality of acts in the field of human sexuality and sees the church's approach or position as suffering from a new, "alien spirit".
 

Mor Ephrem

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Clemente said:
Mor Ephrem said:
Twenty Nine said:
Mor,

Fr. Robert is laying the ground work (or planting seeds) for the Church's acceptance of committed homosexual relations, where gay couples can approach the Chalice with a clear conscience. It's that simple, although he won't come right out and say that in black and white. Fr. Robert is a very intelligent and capable priest - he knows exactly what he is doing and he wrote the article in this fashion for a very specific and intentional reason.

Your reading of the article is playing right into his hand. Those familiar with Fr. Robert and who know the Boston Cathedral know exactly what he is up to. And it is not good.
Then I suppose his opponents want to lynch gays.  Or maybe they want to be "rid of that turbulent priest".  Laying the ground work or planting seeds and all that.
Mor,

That does not follow. Why are you reverting to fallacy? Is your argument that lacking?
I agree, it does not follow and is fallacious, and that's the kind of argument I feel the anti-Fr Arida crowd has been making.  

What good are you serving as an apologist for someone who challenges established Orthodox teaching, which is affirmed by the moderators of orthodoxchristianity.net?

I understand that being disputatious is entertaining, but why defend heterodoxy? Honest question.
All I've said in this thread is that I believe people are misreading, whether intentionally or unintentionally, the article Fr Arida wrote for the "OCA Wonder" blog and drawing erroneous conclusions based on that.  So far, no one has proven otherwise.  I am open to being proven wrong. 

It's not my intent to serve as an "apologist for someone who challenges established Orthodox teaching", but I don't see that in the blog post we are talking about.  If the blog post is just being used as an excuse to pile on Fr Arida because, as someone else wrote, "those familiar with Fr. Robert and who know the Boston Cathedral know exactly what he is up to", then that agenda and the evidence proving it ought to be brought forward.  What is Fr Arida's "crime"?  Where is the evidence?    

Also, I have explicitly endorsed "established Orthodox teaching, which is affirmed by the moderators of orthodoxchristianity.net" in reply no. 72 (as well as in no. 82), so why accuse me of defending heterodoxy?  Honest question.
 

Mor Ephrem

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Twenty Nine said:
Mor Ephrem said:
Then I suppose his opponents want to lynch gays.  Or maybe they want to be "rid of that turbulent priest".  Laying the ground work or planting seeds and all that.
I hope you are not serious. Fr. Robert is a very good priest and certainly a man of the Church. He has contributed a great deal of good things to the OCA. The OCA Synod ought to be very careful and serious about how they handle this.

No one wants to "lynch gays". We ought to take these discussions seriously. It is not a joke. Considering the fact that Fr. Robert is a very good priest and is influential, it is very sad and troubling that he would write an article like this.
I agree with everything you said except your opinion on the article.  I just don't see it as the pro-gay manifesto a lot of others are reading it as. 
 

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TheTrisagion said:
Maybe I'm not following this close enough, but the article doesn't say anything about supporting gay marriage in the church. Instead, people are arguing that he is making veiled references to as to subvert the faithful.  Now, you are saying that he is a very good priest and a man of the Church?  Which one is it? Is he a stealthy subverter of truth or a guy who wrote a rather vague article that people are reading into and getting all up in arms about?
"Veiled references" is the name of the game. For him to come out and explicitly state how he truly feels would be too shocking. Using specific points and firmly addressing these issues would expose him. That is why this article is "veiled" and "ambiguous". The article was intentionally written in such a way that would produce discussion, appear reasonable and "pastoral" and to begin to construct a "pro-homosexual" narrative without appearing to be against the teaching of the Church.

Fr. Robert is a good priest and a man of the Church. He deserves a lot of respect and we must be charitable in these discussions. However, he is dead wrong on this issue...and it is a serious issue.
 

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Mor Ephrem said:
Clemente said:
Mor Ephrem said:
Twenty Nine said:
Mor,

Fr. Robert is laying the ground work (or planting seeds) for the Church's acceptance of committed homosexual relations, where gay couples can approach the Chalice with a clear conscience. It's that simple, although he won't come right out and say that in black and white. Fr. Robert is a very intelligent and capable priest - he knows exactly what he is doing and he wrote the article in this fashion for a very specific and intentional reason.

Your reading of the article is playing right into his hand. Those familiar with Fr. Robert and who know the Boston Cathedral know exactly what he is up to. And it is not good.
Then I suppose his opponents want to lynch gays.  Or maybe they want to be "rid of that turbulent priest".  Laying the ground work or planting seeds and all that.
Mor,

That does not follow. Why are you reverting to fallacy? Is your argument that lacking?
I agree, it does not follow and is fallacious, and that's the kind of argument I feel the anti-Fr Arida crowd has been making.  

What good are you serving as an apologist for someone who challenges established Orthodox teaching, which is affirmed by the moderators of orthodoxchristianity.net?

I understand that being disputatious is entertaining, but why defend heterodoxy? Honest question.
All I've said in this thread is that I believe people are misreading, whether intentionally or unintentionally, the article Fr Arida wrote for the "OCA Wonder" blog and drawing erroneous conclusions based on that.  So far, no one has proven otherwise.  I am open to being proven wrong.  

It's not my intent to serve as an "apologist for someone who challenges established Orthodox teaching", but I don't see that in the blog post we are talking about.  If the blog post is just being used as an excuse to pile on Fr Arida because, as someone else wrote, "those familiar with Fr. Robert and who know the Boston Cathedral know exactly what he is up to", then that agenda and the evidence proving it ought to be brought forward.  What is Fr Arida's "crime"?  Where is the evidence?    

Also, I have explicitly endorsed "established Orthodox teaching, which is affirmed by the moderators of orthodoxchristianity.net" in reply no. 72 (as well as in no. 82), so why accuse me of defending heterodoxy?  Honest question.
Then you are trying to ride two different horses at the same time, which is a fairly uncomfortable ride.

As for evidence, it has been posted already on this thread. Why you insist on ignoring it is curious.
 

Mor Ephrem

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Clemente said:
Mor Ephrem said:
Clemente said:
Mor Ephrem said:
Twenty Nine said:
Mor,

Fr. Robert is laying the ground work (or planting seeds) for the Church's acceptance of committed homosexual relations, where gay couples can approach the Chalice with a clear conscience. It's that simple, although he won't come right out and say that in black and white. Fr. Robert is a very intelligent and capable priest - he knows exactly what he is doing and he wrote the article in this fashion for a very specific and intentional reason.

Your reading of the article is playing right into his hand. Those familiar with Fr. Robert and who know the Boston Cathedral know exactly what he is up to. And it is not good.
Then I suppose his opponents want to lynch gays.  Or maybe they want to be "rid of that turbulent priest".  Laying the ground work or planting seeds and all that.
Mor,

That does not follow. Why are you reverting to fallacy? Is your argument that lacking?
I agree, it does not follow and is fallacious, and that's the kind of argument I feel the anti-Fr Arida crowd has been making.  

What good are you serving as an apologist for someone who challenges established Orthodox teaching, which is affirmed by the moderators of orthodoxchristianity.net?

I understand that being disputatious is entertaining, but why defend heterodoxy? Honest question.
All I've said in this thread is that I believe people are misreading, whether intentionally or unintentionally, the article Fr Arida wrote for the "OCA Wonder" blog and drawing erroneous conclusions based on that.  So far, no one has proven otherwise.  I am open to being proven wrong.  

It's not my intent to serve as an "apologist for someone who challenges established Orthodox teaching", but I don't see that in the blog post we are talking about.  If the blog post is just being used as an excuse to pile on Fr Arida because, as someone else wrote, "those familiar with Fr. Robert and who know the Boston Cathedral know exactly what he is up to", then that agenda and the evidence proving it ought to be brought forward.  What is Fr Arida's "crime"?  Where is the evidence?    

Also, I have explicitly endorsed "established Orthodox teaching, which is affirmed by the moderators of orthodoxchristianity.net" in reply no. 72 (as well as in no. 82), so why accuse me of defending heterodoxy?  Honest question.
Then you are trying to ride two different horses at the same time, which is a fairly uncomfortable ride.

As for evidence, it has been posted already on this thread. Why you insist on ignoring it curious.
LOL, whatever.  Let me know when you have something to contribute other than gossip and innuendo. 
 

rakovsky

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Fr. Arida writes on p. 1:

To  diminish  this  most  fundamental aspect  of  Orthodox  thought  and  life  is  nothing  less  than  a distortion  of  the  Gospel. Yet,  as  will  be  pointed  out,  this  is  precisely  what  is  occurring  in  the  Orthodox Church here  and  abroad.  A  “new  and  alien spirit”  is  displacing  the  authentic  voice  of  the Gospel.The  voice  of  Christ  is  being  weakened  by  the  voice  of  philosophical  and ethical  systems.  
1. What is the ethical system of our Church that is weakening Christ's voice?
2. He sees a "new and alien spirit" in our Church displacing the gospel. He then explains on page 4 that this spirit means assaulting those they perceive as immoral, in the context of the issue of sexual morality. But in fact, the Church's "assault" in this issue is not something new or alien, but has been around for many centuries.

This is what he says on p.4:
the Church can no longer ignore or condemn questions and issues that are presumed to contradict or challenge its living Tradition. Among  the  most   controversial   of   these   issues   are   those   related   to   human   sexuality,   the  configuration  of  the  family,  the  beginning  and  ending  of  human  life,  the  economy  and  the  care  and  utilization  of  the  environment  including  the  care,  dignity  and  quality  of  all  human life.

That  there  are  Orthodox  Christians  who  misuse  the  never  changing  Christ  to promote  a  particular  political  agenda  and ideology or as  license  to  verbally  and physically  assault  those  they  perceive  as  immoral  along  with  those  who  would question  the  status  quo  of  the  Church impose  on  the  Church  a  “new  and  alien spirit."
1. Is Fr. Arida correct that the Church is mistaken to condemn the issue related to human sexuality in the way it currently does?
2. What is the particular political agenda and ideology that he opposes?
3. Why does he say that those Orthodox Christians are "perceiving" others as immoral? Doesn't he agree that those actions are immoral?

Again, my opinion is that human sexuality is primarily a psychological issue, rather than a moral one. The problem I see in the article is mischaracterizing the development of the Church's position. A common idea among Protestants was that Jesus and the gospels thought like modern Protestants do, but then the "bad/intolerant/manly" institutionalized church came along and corrupted it. For example, one minister gave me a book that proposed Jesus was tolerant about sexual issues and that it was Paul who came along and was intolerant about homosexuality. The minister concluded that we should instead follow the allegedly tolerant view of the gospels on the topic. So I don't think the church's perception of "immorality" on sex issues are new and alien but something that goes back at least to Paul.
 

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Mor Ephrem said:
Clemente said:
Mor Ephrem said:
Clemente said:
Mor Ephrem said:
Twenty Nine said:
Mor,

Fr. Robert is laying the ground work (or planting seeds) for the Church's acceptance of committed homosexual relations, where gay couples can approach the Chalice with a clear conscience. It's that simple, although he won't come right out and say that in black and white. Fr. Robert is a very intelligent and capable priest - he knows exactly what he is doing and he wrote the article in this fashion for a very specific and intentional reason.

Your reading of the article is playing right into his hand. Those familiar with Fr. Robert and who know the Boston Cathedral know exactly what he is up to. And it is not good.
Then I suppose his opponents want to lynch gays.  Or maybe they want to be "rid of that turbulent priest".  Laying the ground work or planting seeds and all that.
Mor,

That does not follow. Why are you reverting to fallacy? Is your argument that lacking?
I agree, it does not follow and is fallacious, and that's the kind of argument I feel the anti-Fr Arida crowd has been making.  

What good are you serving as an apologist for someone who challenges established Orthodox teaching, which is affirmed by the moderators of orthodoxchristianity.net?

I understand that being disputatious is entertaining, but why defend heterodoxy? Honest question.
All I've said in this thread is that I believe people are misreading, whether intentionally or unintentionally, the article Fr Arida wrote for the "OCA Wonder" blog and drawing erroneous conclusions based on that.  So far, no one has proven otherwise.  I am open to being proven wrong.  

It's not my intent to serve as an "apologist for someone who challenges established Orthodox teaching", but I don't see that in the blog post we are talking about.  If the blog post is just being used as an excuse to pile on Fr Arida because, as someone else wrote, "those familiar with Fr. Robert and who know the Boston Cathedral know exactly what he is up to", then that agenda and the evidence proving it ought to be brought forward.  What is Fr Arida's "crime"?  Where is the evidence?    

Also, I have explicitly endorsed "established Orthodox teaching, which is affirmed by the moderators of orthodoxchristianity.net" in reply no. 72 (as well as in no. 82), so why accuse me of defending heterodoxy?  Honest question.
Then you are trying to ride two different horses at the same time, which is a fairly uncomfortable ride.

As for evidence, it has been posted already on this thread. Why you insist on ignoring it curious.
LOL, whatever.  Let me know when you have something to contribute other than gossip and innuendo. 
LOL, whatever. Let me know when you actually read the other Father Arida article I quoted in #29. Perhaps you could do some homework rather than just rely on fallacious reasoning and personal attacks.
 

Mor Ephrem

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Clemente said:
Let me know when you actually read the other Father Arida article I quoted in #29.
I did read that article.  I read it within a day or so of your posting it.  I feel about it as I do about the article in the OP.  What else have you got? 

Perhaps you could do some homework rather than just rely on fallacious reasoning and personal attacks.
If you feel I've personally attacked you in this thread, please feel free to click "report to moderator" at the bottom right hand corner of every offending post, and the other moderators will consider the matter and take the necessary action against me if any is deemed appropriate in their view.  But I don't like being accused of defending heterodoxy and attacking people when my only crime is disagreeing with your opinion. 
 

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Mor Ephrem said:
Clemente said:
Let me know when you actually read the other Father Arida article I quoted in #29.
I did read that article.  I read it within a day or so of your posting it.  I feel about it as I do about the article in the OP.  What else have you got? 

Perhaps you could do some homework rather than just rely on fallacious reasoning and personal attacks.
If you feel I've personally attacked you in this thread, please feel free to click "report to moderator" at the bottom right hand corner of every offending post, and the other moderators will consider the matter and take the necessary action against me if any is deemed appropriate in their view.  But I don't like being accused of defending heterodoxy and attacking people when my only crime is disagreeing with your opinion. 
So my linking his article is "gossip" and "innuendo"? Is your position so weak that you have to rely on fallacy?
 

Mor Ephrem

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Clemente said:
Mor Ephrem said:
Clemente said:
Let me know when you actually read the other Father Arida article I quoted in #29.
I did read that article.  I read it within a day or so of your posting it.  I feel about it as I do about the article in the OP.  What else have you got? 

Perhaps you could do some homework rather than just rely on fallacious reasoning and personal attacks.
If you feel I've personally attacked you in this thread, please feel free to click "report to moderator" at the bottom right hand corner of every offending post, and the other moderators will consider the matter and take the necessary action against me if any is deemed appropriate in their view.  But I don't like being accused of defending heterodoxy and attacking people when my only crime is disagreeing with your opinion. 
So my linking his article is "gossip" and "innuendo"?
No.  What's gossip and innuendo, IMO, is claiming I'm "trying to ride two different horses at the same time", "defending heterodoxy", making "personal attacks", and, more generally, reading things into texts that aren't there, justifying this when it agrees with your presuppositions and condemning it as fallacious reasoning when applied equally to what you don't like. 

Is your position so weak that you have to rely on fallacy?
What fallacy?  You have made several accusations against me but you can't substantiate even one of them.  You cannot or will not answer my questions.  And you want to lecture me about relying on fallacy? 

If your profile information is to be believed, you are an Orthodox Christian in Europe.  I live in the States, I studied in the States, I studied in and graduated from an OCA seminary in the States.  Even though I'm not a member of the OCA, these are not just characters in an internet controversy for me: I know people on both sides of the debate, I've worked with them, studied with them, prayed with them, in some cases I've even played with their kids.  There are people whom I greatly respect and I agree with them, but there are also people I greatly respect with whom I disagree.  I don't particularly enjoy the latter, but I'm willing to deal with it if I'm doing it for the right reasons.  That's why I'm after the truth.  But I don't like asking for fish, receiving snakes, and then being lectured about why I should be grateful for snakes. 
 

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So apparently what I wrote a few messages above in red and my analysis doesn't mean much?
 

Second Chance

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Clemente said:
Mor Ephrem said:
Clemente said:
Let me know when you actually read the other Father Arida article I quoted in #29.
I did read that article.  I read it within a day or so of your posting it.  I feel about it as I do about the article in the OP.  What else have you got?  

Perhaps you could do some homework rather than just rely on fallacious reasoning and personal attacks.
If you feel I've personally attacked you in this thread, please feel free to click "report to moderator" at the bottom right hand corner of every offending post, and the other moderators will consider the matter and take the necessary action against me if any is deemed appropriate in their view.  But I don't like being accused of defending heterodoxy and attacking people when my only crime is disagreeing with your opinion.  
So my linking his article is "gossip" and "innuendo"? Is your position so weak that you have to rely on fallacy?
I believe that any anonymous poster instantly loses credibility if he/she makes a categorical and personal accusation, especially against our priests and bishops. I have read the accusation that Fr Arida is communing active and unrepentant homosexuals. This has never come up from anybody except those who post anonymously and may not be determined to be eyewitnesses. Thus, all such accusations are indeed gossip and innuendo, if not bearing false witness. Now, regarding the actual content of Fr Arida's essay, it can be read as endorsing a rethinking our pastoral approach to all sinners, to include homosexuals. Or, it could be read as a starting argument in altering our traditional view of homosexuality and same-sex activity. I submit to you that both views are valid because of many factors, not the least of which is the current cultural and moral war waged by the Gay Lobby against Christianity. It does us no good, however, if we descend into the fog of war in such a way that we start lobbing grenades indiscriminately.
 

Opus118

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Carl Kraeff (Second Chance) said:
Clemente said:
Mor Ephrem said:
Clemente said:
Let me know when you actually read the other Father Arida article I quoted in #29.
I did read that article.  I read it within a day or so of your posting it.  I feel about it as I do about the article in the OP.  What else have you got?  

Perhaps you could do some homework rather than just rely on fallacious reasoning and personal attacks.
If you feel I've personally attacked you in this thread, please feel free to click "report to moderator" at the bottom right hand corner of every offending post, and the other moderators will consider the matter and take the necessary action against me if any is deemed appropriate in their view.  But I don't like being accused of defending heterodoxy and attacking people when my only crime is disagreeing with your opinion.  
So my linking his article is "gossip" and "innuendo"? Is your position so weak that you have to rely on fallacy?
I believe that any anonymous poster instantly loses credibility if he/she makes a categorical and personal accusation, especially against our priests and bishops. I have read the accusation that Fr Arida is communing active and unrepentant homosexuals. This has never come up from anybody except those who post anonymously and may not be determined to be eyewitnesses. Thus, all such accusations are indeed gossip and innuendo, if not bearing false witness. Now, regarding the actual content of Fr Arida's essay, it can be read as endorsing a rethinking our pastoral approach to all sinners, to include homosexuals. Or, it could be read as a starting argument in altering our traditional view of homosexuality and same-sex activity. I submit to you that both views are valid because of many factors, not the least of which is the current cultural and moral war waged by the Gay Lobby against Christianity. It does us no good, however, if we descend into the fog of war in such a way that we start lobbing grenades indiscriminately.
I have appreciated your posts here Carl, especially the synodal statement you provided above:


Carl Kraeff (Second Chance) said:
I am very disappointed that you could generalize from this one incident. The OCA's position is no different than any other jurisdiction's and it is very clear:

"According to the apostle Paul, those engaging in homosexual acts, with fornicators, adulterers, idolaters, thieves, the greedy, drunkards, revilers and robbers, will not inherit the kingdom of heaven. Christians come from all these categories of evil doers who have, voluntarily and involuntarily, been caught up in the sin of the world. They are those who through their personal repentance and faith in Christ, their baptism and chrismation, and their participation in Holy Communion, have been “washed…sanctified…and made righteous in the name of the Lord Jesus and in the Spirit of our God” (1 Corinthians 6:9-11; Orthodox Baptism and Chrismation Service).

Jesus teaches mercy and forgiveness for all sinners, but the Lord does not justify sin. When the Son of God pronounces divine pardon to those caught in evil he always charges the forgiven sinner to “go and sin no more” (John 8:11).

Convinced of these God-revealed truths, we offer the following affirmations and admonitions for the guidance of the faithful:

Homosexuality is to be approached as the result of humanity’s rebellion against God, and so against its own nature and well-being. It is not to be taken as a way of living and acting for men and women made in God’s image and likeness.

Men and women with homosexual feelings and emotions are to be treated with the understanding, acceptance, love, justice and mercy due to all human beings.

People with homosexual tendencies are to be helped to admit these feelings to themselves and to others who will not reject or harm them. They are to seek assistance in discovering the specific causes of their homosexual orientation, and to work toward overcoming its harmful effects in their lives.

Persons struggling with homosexuality who accept the Orthodox faith and strive to fulfill the Orthodox way of life may be communicants of the Church with everyone else who believes and struggles. Those instructed and counseled in Orthodox Christian doctrine and ascetical life who still want to justify their behavior may not participate in the Church’s sacramental mysteries, since to do so would not help, but harm them.

Assistance is to be given to those who deal with persons of homosexual orientation in order to help them with their thoughts, feelings and actions in regard to homosexuality. Such assistance is especially necessary for parents, relatives and friends of persons with homosexual tendencies and feelings. It is certainly necessary for pastors and church workers."
http://oca.org/holy-synod/statements/holy-synod/synodal-affirmations-on-marriage-family-sexuality-and-the-sanctity-of-life#Homosexuality
I am now going to read the posts that I could only glance at during the day.
 

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scamandrius said:
Mor Ephrem said:
rakovsky said:
But if I read ritically some sentences Fr. Arida wrote, then he is making inferences that go against the church. The Church's position is not a new and alien spirit.
I don't think Fr Arida's critics have made the case for this interpretation of his writing.
I took the "new and alien spirit" to refer to converts who, in his mind, didn't shed all or enough of their Protestant baggage when swimming the Bosporus.
That was my take reading it as well, but I honestly had never heard of him before two weeks ago. (I am not saying I agree with that premise...stereotypes are often misleading.)
 

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podkarpatska said:
scamandrius said:
Mor Ephrem said:
rakovsky said:
But if I read ritically some sentences Fr. Arida wrote, then he is making inferences that go against the church. The Church's position is not a new and alien spirit.
I don't think Fr Arida's critics have made the case for this interpretation of his writing.
I took the "new and alien spirit" to refer to converts who, in his mind, didn't shed all or enough of their Protestant baggage when swimming the Bosporus.
That was my take reading it as well, but I honestly had never heard of him before two weeks ago. (I am not saying I agree with that premise...stereotypes are often misleading.)
That was definitely not my take. My take (hypothetical, but based on past writings) is that he was commenting on the subversion (can't think of the right word currently) of the Church by priests with an overtly political agenda, who elevate themselves, and promote discord as a means to further their personal agenda rather than that of the Church. Some of those priests immediately responded to his post in their typical way. I think the sex thing is a ruse to divert from the message.

Then again his post was so obscure any interpretation can be meshed with it.
 

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rakovsky said:
Fr. Arida is suggesting that the Church is under a "new" alien spirit that promotes an ideology against a certain sexual orientation or assaults those who act in ways it considers immoral or who raise questions about the Church's position. (page 3)

The problem with Fr. Arida's essay is that he is suggesting that opposition to homosexual acts are a new, alien spirit for the Church when in fact that has been the church's view going back to St. Paul's writings about it.

I doubt that the church assaults those who only raise questions about its positions. Probably the main question people on both sides of a debate on the question would have to ask and answer is what things has the Church changed on (eg. Calendar, head coverings), and how are those categories of things different for the Church than the things those people are questioning (eg. sexual acts).

You can just answer that the question of sex acts is a much different one for the church than calendar questions.
I am back to this Rakovsky. I am slow and I also realize I am covering past ground. I suggest that the term "new, alien spirit" should be ignored. No one really knows what it means and discussing it is futile. Where does "homosexual acts" come from. What priest has promoted homo- or hetero-sexual acts (outside of holy matrimony in the latter case)? Homosexuality is a different genre which I think the Church has been dealing with for >2000  years and I hope with some success.

I do not have time to post further, but these are my next thoughts for which I do not have answers. It seems reasonable to me that most homosexuals are celibate (or chaste, I can never remember the right term) and that most unmarried heterosexuals are not. Do you know? I am not sure how one surveys "not out of the closet" homosexuals. I am basing this on the probability of temptation in relation to population density. I have this other notion which I am unsure about because I am not homosexual, but I suspect is true. Women are more adept at seducing resistant men and vice versa.
 

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"I am very disappointed that you could generalize from this one incident. The OCA's position is no different than any other jurisdiction's and it is very clear:"

Oh I'm not generalizing this to one incident. Please don't assume that. I did'nt mention the other incidences because the topic of this tread is Fr Robert and his article and his stance on homosexuality, not all the shenninigans the OCA has engaged in.

I supposed we could start another tread for that.

One cannot assume based on a comment on a discussion forum, that one isn't in the know, or has not had certain experiences, seen certain things, etc, but one cannot assume the commentator has either. One should ask!
 

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Opus118 said:
podkarpatska said:
scamandrius said:
Mor Ephrem said:
rakovsky said:
But if I read ritically some sentences Fr. Arida wrote, then he is making inferences that go against the church. The Church's position is not a new and alien spirit.
I don't think Fr Arida's critics have made the case for this interpretation of his writing.
I took the "new and alien spirit" to refer to converts who, in his mind, didn't shed all or enough of their Protestant baggage when swimming the Bosporus.
That was my take reading it as well, but I honestly had never heard of him before two weeks ago. (I am not saying I agree with that premise...stereotypes are often misleading.)
That was definitely not my take. My take (hypothetical, but based on past writings) is that he was commenting on the subversion (can't think of the right word currently) of the Church by priests with an overtly political agenda, who elevate themselves, and promote discord as a means to further their personal agenda rather than that of the Church. Some of those priests immediately responded to his post in their typical way. I think the sex thing is a ruse to divert from the message.
An interesting observation, Opus.  Reading the article again with this interpretation in mind does put a new spin on things for me.  If this is Fr. Robert's thesis, than I thoroughly agree with him and wish him all success.  Much ado has been made in this discourse about the Orthodox Church in America becoming "Episcopalian" but I think it would be just as undesirable for it to become "Southern Baptist" being that the spirit of the latter is as "new" and "alien" to Orthodoxy as that of the former.  Orthodoxy is not reactionary.  It transcends American politics and I praise God that it has not aligned itself with one political camp or the other in the way that some American denominations have.  I also think that converts to Orthodoxy coming from those denominations - whether they are clergy or laity - have no business attempting to remake the Church in the image of their former confessions and would be attempting to impose a "new and alien" spirit on the Church by doing so for precisely the reasons articulated so eloquently in this thread by Mor Ephrem.  If Fr. Robert is asserting - as podkarpatska has often asserted on these boards - that Orthodoxy's traditional morality and theological conservatism does not necessarily make it the natural ally of one American political party or the other, than I not only applaud him but thank God that it is so.
 

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Mor Ephrem said:
... it's not clear to me from reading his article that Fr Arida is advocating homosexuality, gay marriage, or any of the other things his critics claim he's most certainly advocating.  
I agree that it is not clear. I honestly can't decide whether this lack of clarity was the result of carefulness, or carelessness.

If  the  never  changing  Gospel  who  is  Jesus  Christ  is  to  have  a  credible  presence  and  role  in  our  culture  then  the  Church  can  no  longer  ignore  or  condemn  questions  and   issues  that  are  presumed  to  contradict  or  challenge  its  living  Tradition.  Among  the  most   controversial   of   these   issues   are   those   related   to   human   sexuality, the  configuration  of  the  family,  the  beginning  and  ending  of  human  life,  the  economy   and   the   care   and   utilization   of   the   environment   including   the   care,   dignity and  quality  of  all  human  life.  If  the  unchanging  Gospel  is  to  be  offered  to  the  culture  then   the  Church,  in  and  through  the  Holy  Spirit  will  have  to  expand  the  understanding  of   itself  and  the  world  it  is  called  to  save.  
While this statement doesn't explicitly step over the line, it seems to me that it should have been foreseeable that it would illicit raised eyebrows and responses of suspicion that it may really mean: we must conform our antiquated ideas of morality to be relevant in today's culture. The potential for this reaction was either naively missed, or WAS the intended purpose.  It could have been avoided with a small acknowledgement of the official position of the OCA, while still calling for a change in tone and pastoral concern for those who are struggling with passions (as are we all).

That  there  are  Orthodox  Christians  who   misuse   the   never   changing   Christ   to   promote   a   particular   political   agenda   and   ideology  or  as  license  to  verbally  and  physically  assault  those  they  perceive  as   immoral  along  with  those  who  would  question  the  status  quo  of  the  Church  impose  on  the  Church  a  “new  and  alien  spirit.”  
I going to assume he is talking about instances like http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2326215/Thousands-anti-gay-protesters-riot-Georgia-Chaos-streets-Orthodox-priests-join-march-threaten-lash-gay-pride-activists-NETTLES.html if that is the case then we agree. Are these cases really widespread? Any amount of it is too much and it should be rightly condemned. I also agree that the language and tone used by Christians, Orthodox and otherwise has room for improvement, going on about “filthy sodomites”  isn’t going to bring anyone to Christ. The potential problem with Fr. Robert’s statement above is: What constitutes a “verbal assault”? In today’s society the threshold for what constitutes a “verbal assualt” is really quite low: anyone who acknowledges that they believe homosexual acts are sinful, or opposes re-defining marriage is said to be a bigot.

I would like to hear a clarification from Fr. Robert because I’m not sure of the usefulness of such an ambiguous essay, and if I and others are reading something into his piece that isn't there, it seems to me he could clear it up quite easily if he wanted to.
 

DCBmoreOCF

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I have an exceedingly simple question for Fr. Arida:

If all that Fr. Arida is doing is advocating for a change in tone in the way Orthodox engage people who suffer from same sex attraction, why does he end his article by  advocating the expulsion of some "new and alien spirit", presumably the spirit which is engaging with the same sex attraction suffering community in an unacceptable way? Is this not a bit harsh? Expulsion is reserved for those at odds with Holy Tradition. What does Holy Tradition say about same sex attraction?

If he wants a different tone, same substance, then he say that. If he wants a different substance, he should state what the difference is and why the current dominant interpretation of Holy Tradition is somehow wrong and at odds with Tradition as it as it has been expressed for thousands of years.

Fr. Arida speaks in a language familiar to all who have observed the culture wars, a very dishonest and murky language in my opinion  However, an honest person would simply state what he means plainly rather than leave us in the position where we either have to guess at the meaning of murky language which never actually takes a stand on the moral issue, or assume that the language used is part of some attempt at subterfuge.

I humbly suggest the following: If Fr. Arida's bishop would obtain Fr. Arida's signature on a statement affirming the Church's teaching regarding same sex attraction and sexual relations, then perhaps some of the controversy would go away. Of course if he could not in good conscience sign such a statement, then we would be in a different position.
 

Opus118

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Bob2 said:
Mor Ephrem said:
... it's not clear to me from reading his article that Fr Arida is advocating homosexuality, gay marriage, or any of the other things his critics claim he's most certainly advocating.  
I agree that it is not clear. I honestly can't decide whether this lack of clarity was the result of carefulness, or carelessness.

If  the  never  changing  Gospel  who  is  Jesus  Christ  is  to  have  a  credible  presence  and  role  in  our  culture  then  the  Church  can  no  longer  ignore  or  condemn  questions  and   issues  that  are  presumed  to  contradict  or  challenge  its  living  Tradition.  Among  the  most   controversial   of   these   issues   are   those   related   to   human   sexuality, the  configuration  of  the  family,  the  beginning  and  ending  of  human  life,  the  economy   and   the   care   and   utilization   of   the   environment   including   the   care,   dignity and  quality  of  all  human  life.  If  the  unchanging  Gospel  is  to  be  offered  to  the  culture  then   the  Church,  in  and  through  the  Holy  Spirit  will  have  to  expand  the  understanding  of   itself  and  the  world  it  is  called  to  save.  
While this statement doesn't explicitly step over the line, it seems to me that it should have been foreseeable that it would illicit raised eyebrows and responses of suspicion that it may really mean: we must conform our antiquated ideas of morality to be relevant in today's culture. The potential for this reaction was either naively missed, or WAS the intended purpose.  It could have been avoided with a small acknowledgement of the official position of the OCA, while still calling for a change in tone and pastoral concern for those who are struggling with passions (as are we all).

That  there  are  Orthodox  Christians  who   misuse   the   never   changing   Christ   to   promote   a   particular   political   agenda   and   ideology  or  as  license  to  verbally  and  physically  assault  those  they  perceive  as   immoral  along  with  those  who  would  question  the  status  quo  of  the  Church  impose  on  the  Church  a  “new  and  alien  spirit.”  
I going to assume he is talking about instances like http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2326215/Thousands-anti-gay-protesters-riot-Georgia-Chaos-streets-Orthodox-priests-join-march-threaten-lash-gay-pride-activists-NETTLES.html if that is the case then we agree. Are these cases really widespread? Any amount of it is too much and it should be rightly condemned. I also agree that the language and tone used by Christians, Orthodox and otherwise has room for improvement, going on about “filthy sodomites”  isn’t going to bring anyone to Christ. The potential problem with Fr. Robert’s statement above is: What constitutes a “verbal assault”? In today’s society the threshold for what constitutes a “verbal assualt” is really quite low: anyone who acknowledges that they believe homosexual acts are sinful, or opposes re-defining marriage is said to be a bigot.

I would like to hear a clarification from Fr. Robert because I’m not sure of the usefulness of such an ambiguous essay, and if I and others are reading something into his piece that isn't there, it seems to me he could clear it up quite easily if he wanted to.
The poisoned pen can sometimes be worse than poisoned nettles. May be he has already written something, where should I look?
 

Bob2

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If he has written a clarification I would think it would end up here: http://www.holytrinityorthodox.org/articles_and_talks/index.htm
 

primuspilus

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I dont think Mor is trying to be disingenuous or anything, I just think he is not trying to read too deeply into what Fr. Arida is NOT saying.

I would like Fr. Arida to clarify as to what this new and alien spirit is. I think he left this purposefully ambiguous.

PP
 

podkarpatska

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Mor Ephrem said:
Clemente said:
Mor Ephrem said:
Clemente said:
Mor Ephrem said:
Twenty Nine said:
Mor,

Fr. Robert is laying the ground work (or planting seeds) for the Church's acceptance of committed homosexual relations, where gay couples can approach the Chalice with a clear conscience. It's that simple, although he won't come right out and say that in black and white. Fr. Robert is a very intelligent and capable priest - he knows exactly what he is doing and he wrote the article in this fashion for a very specific and intentional reason.

Your reading of the article is playing right into his hand. Those familiar with Fr. Robert and who know the Boston Cathedral know exactly what he is up to. And it is not good.
Then I suppose his opponents want to lynch gays.  Or maybe they want to be "rid of that turbulent priest".  Laying the ground work or planting seeds and all that.
Mor,

That does not follow. Why are you reverting to fallacy? Is your argument that lacking?
I agree, it does not follow and is fallacious, and that's the kind of argument I feel the anti-Fr Arida crowd has been making.  

What good are you serving as an apologist for someone who challenges established Orthodox teaching, which is affirmed by the moderators of orthodoxchristianity.net?

I understand that being disputatious is entertaining, but why defend heterodoxy? Honest question.
All I've said in this thread is that I believe people are misreading, whether intentionally or unintentionally, the article Fr Arida wrote for the "OCA Wonder" blog and drawing erroneous conclusions based on that.  So far, no one has proven otherwise.  I am open to being proven wrong.  

It's not my intent to serve as an "apologist for someone who challenges established Orthodox teaching", but I don't see that in the blog post we are talking about.  If the blog post is just being used as an excuse to pile on Fr Arida because, as someone else wrote, "those familiar with Fr. Robert and who know the Boston Cathedral know exactly what he is up to", then that agenda and the evidence proving it ought to be brought forward.  What is Fr Arida's "crime"?  Where is the evidence?    

Also, I have explicitly endorsed "established Orthodox teaching, which is affirmed by the moderators of orthodoxchristianity.net" in reply no. 72 (as well as in no. 82), so why accuse me of defending heterodoxy?  Honest question.
Then you are trying to ride two different horses at the same time, which is a fairly uncomfortable ride.

As for evidence, it has been posted already on this thread. Why you insist on ignoring it curious.
LOL, whatever.  Let me know when you have something to contribute other than gossip and innuendo. 
Agreed. While those asserting or implying that heterodoxy has become the "norm" at the OCA's Boston Cathedral, it ought to be stated that the rector of that cathedral surely can not be preaching heterodoxy absent the knowledge of his ruling bishop.  Come on folks - say it -  or sit down. I sense that an alien spirit is lurking in more than one place.
 

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If Fr. Robert's article is being blown out of proportion, that it is simply being misunderstood and it is not a threat to the teaching of the Orthodox Church, then two questions:

1) Why did the OCA Synod re-release the official OCA stance on homosexuality and take Fr. Robert's article down from the OCA Wonderblog?

2) Why has Fr. Robert not responded to clarify what he wrote?
 
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