The State of the GOA

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ozgeorge

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observer said:
The language situation is of concern, but since US is a melting-pot of tribes, I think we need to cater for everyone. And the hallmark of Orthodoxy is unity through diversity. If the English-speaking parishes grow, not just in numbers, but spiritually, then the 'others'', the ethic clubs will become just that.ÂÂ
Strange that the Roman Catholics worshipped for 1900 years in Latin and no one complained until Vatican II.
And now, everyone complains about Vatican II.

observer said:
do we want exclusive black Orthodoxy? I don't think so. But I do believe that peope should have the right to choose.ÂÂ
"Exclucsiviity" is not a choice. A "Church" which excludes others on the basis of race is not the Church. We've heard from two non-Greek converts to the GOA on this thread so far, so I don't think anyone can accuse the GOA of this.
 

Elisha

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ozgeorge said:
Hey! That's nasty and rude!

The "way someone sounds" depends on the ears of the listener. This is the second time GiC has been attacked for "the way he sounds" rather than the content of what he says.
Yes, and he admits that his content is deliberately argumentative (which almost everyone here has figured out) and most here complain about his writing style as well - which just makes him look horribly pretentious.  I'm just pointing out what he has admitted and doesn't seem willing to change.
 

ozgeorge

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Elisha said:
Yes, and he admits that his content is deliberately argumentative (which almost everyone here has figured out)
And how is this "pretentious"- especially when he doesn't pretend that this is not the case?

Elisha said:
and most here complain about his writing style as well - which just makes him look horribly pretentious.ÂÂ
How can a "writing style" make one look pretentious? What about those for whom English is not the first language- would you say their writing style "makes them look stupid"?


 

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"Exclucsiviity" is not a choice. A "Church" which excludes others on the basis of race is not the Church. We've heard from two non-Greek converts to the GOA on this thread so far, so I don't think anyone can accuse the GOA of this.
I'm not sure if you actually read my post (I'm one of the converts to the GOA), but I did mention that the racism in the GOA did almost drive a friend of mine from converting to Orthodoxy.  He was eventually baptized in the ROCOR thankfully.  But I do know of others who have been very turned off of Orthodoxy by the GOA. 
 

Anastasios

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How can a "writing style" make one look pretentious? What about those for whom English is not the first language- would you say their writing style "makes them look stupid"?
Obviously one's writing style can make him look pretentious if he writes in an antiquarian fashion designed to show superior knowledge or correctness in form that has nothing to do with the argument.

As far as people whose first language is not English, that is not relevant to this case because they do not write intentionally in a way that highlights them as different or unique.

Anastasios
 

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Obviously one's writing style can make him look pretentious if he writes in an antiquarian fashion designed to show superior knowledge or correctness in form that has nothing to do with the argument.
Yeah, like if I was pretentious, I might point out that Anastasios here is committing an unnecessary shift in pronoun: to wit, he has gone from "one's" to "him" and "he". I might point out, in superior fashion, that one should always be consistent with one's pronouns, otherwise one shall be open to correction. :p

(Btw, I don't even know if the above is totally accurate, I just thought I'd give it a shot since our esteemed Admin is such a sticker for proper grammar and spelling, even to the extent of editing other people's threads  ;D)
 

Anastasios

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Paradosis said:
Yeah, like if I was pretentious, I might point out that Anastasios here is committing an unnecessary shift in pronoun: to wit, he has gone from "one's" to "him" and "he". I might point out, in superior fashion, that one should always be consistent with one's pronouns, otherwise one shall be open to correction. :p

(Btw, I don't even know if the above is totally accurate, I just thought I'd give it a shot since our esteemed Admin is such a sticker for proper grammar and spelling, even to the extent of editing other people's threads ;D)
Dude, I just don't like it's vs. its mistakes, I edited ONE THREAD where someone posted such a mistake in a title that was being repeated over and over again every time one hit reply, and making constructive corrections is NOT the same thing as deliberately writing in a non-standard style.

Anastasios
 

Asteriktos

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Whatsoever thou sayest, my dear Anastasios. I shant argue the point and continue to be contrary. :p

I'm just joking a bit, I think the talk about how other people talk has gotten way too serious here. I Capitalize a lot of Stuff When I Write in Real Life as well, it Has nothing to do With a Conscious Attempt to follow some Rule, It is just a Thing I picked up When taking Computer Programming in Vo-Tech. I do Try to Limit Caps to Titles and Whatnot on the Internet, Though. :)

Itz NoT liKE I aM TalkiN lIKe ThiS. I HAtE That!?

Or this... >#@#$@#$ Oh wait, one of the chief honchos here does that :p
 

Fr. George

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Wow - I go away to summer camp for 5 weeks of work and a jewel of a thread like this starts?  And now that I am hopping in so late in the game, there is far too much to respond to on my current energy level (I love working at the Summer Camp, but for about a week after it's over I am completely sapped of all my energy).

Let's dig in, shall we?

- GiC sounding like a 

Elisha said:
pretentious, pompous a**?
Right.  So my dear friend GiC is confident in his opinions and very direct.  Sometimes that comes off as arrogant and pretentious.  He can sound that way conversationally, too.  It is not out of his personal ego or a need to "stir the pot," but again out of a confidence in his positions (of course, when he wants to stir the pot, he does so quite well). 

He is also not ethnically Greek; while he has adopted a love for Greece, he also uses Greek in a classical way (Romiosini, as Fr. John would rather have it).  Anyway, this discussion is inconsequential to the matter on the Subject line.

- Papism.  Misnomer.  In fact, many of the lay people in the GOA are rather the opposite; more Protestant than anything else (as was pointed out earlier by Silouan).  They have been influenced by the "American Spirit" and the circumstances in which the GOA grew (which were quite different than the other jurisdictions).  Many of the people are true congregationalists; a modified form of this position could be quite useful (as my Metropolitan is quick to point out, the fullness of the Church exists within the local parish when the members are present for the Eucharist with the blessing of the Bishop) but the extreme form that can often be found is quite harmful.  GiC, on the other hand, is a fan of the Canonical Tradition of the Church, which leaves many more rights and responsibilities in the bishops and the EP than are exercised currently.

- Anti-Tradition.  Wow, where did this come from?  I don't know too many who are so strongly anti-monastic or whatnot.  Of course, my Metropolis of the GOA was the first to integrate Monastic communities in the Post-HTM era, and now we have 4 communities and 2 monastic institutions (organizations run by individual monastics in the area of service to the poor).  The problems we come across in the GOA are 1) lack of exposure to "traditional Orthodoxy", and 2) an all-too-cemented connection to the present secular culture through materialism (regardless of wealth and/or social status).  This is why you have people who don't know/care about headscarves, and/or namedays/Slavas/etc, the list goes on.  Part of it is that the people are not as quick to pick up practices that are not culturally popular; this is not a situation unique to the present time.  Remember, the Church was much smaller before St. Constantine; after the Edict of Milan, there was a sudden explosion in Church membership - go figure, the real believers were okay, but now you have an influx of people who are Christian because its okay to be, and because it is now increasingly popular.

- Nationalism / Ethno-centrism.  There are elements of both, but not majorities of either, in the GOA.  Okay.  You do have parishes who want only "Greeks" to attend.  Of course, if you know Greeks, then you know why I put that in quotation marks - because "Greek" depends on where you're from.  Many of the Southern Greeks think the Northerners are Bulgars and Albanians; Some in the West think that the Chians are Turks.  There are "Greeks" who will not like people whose ancestors are from a village only 20 miles from their own.  The Greek City-State lives on in the modern day amongst the dispersed Greeks (mainly those who came to this country 20-60 years ago, and have somehow formed their own village-cliques here that have nothing to do with "real" Greek culture in Greece). 

But here's the rub with both angles: nationalism isn't dominant, because we don't live in Greece, and the people don't want to live in Greece, and they don't want their church controlled by Greece.  They know "Greece" is nearly a third-world country over 75% of its land-mass.  They know that the government is corrupt.  And the people do accept as "Greek" those who are from areas that are not within the current political boundaries (like Asia Minor Greeks or Cypriot Greeks).  There's more nationalism here amongst the non-ethnic groups that insist that we sever all administrative and ecclesiastical ties with the "Old World" because they are 1) Out-of touch or 2) Not operating in our best interests.  And the real definition of Phyletism is the notion that the Church should be administratively split along Nationalistic boundaries.

Ethno-centrism is closer to the truth, but that exists in pockets where the focus is on the maintenance of ethnic identity.  I could give anecdotal evidence of how "widespread" this mindset is: in Cleveland we have 4 parishes; 1 is classified as ethno-centric, 1 as moderately accepting, and the other 2 as very accepting.  Within our Metropolis as a whole, the parishes that are not "ethno-centric" in their worldview outnumber the ones that are; in fact, the "ethno-centric" parishes often have reputations amongst the other parishes for their "hospitality."  Of course, you will have more "ethno-centric" parishes in areas with higher concentrations of Greeks (like Chicago, NY, Boston).

Wow, I'm getting tired and far too belligerent for my own good.  Good night all, and maybe I'll get back to this later.
 

Anastasios

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You know, I shouldn't have let this thread develop like it did. I apologize to GisC.  I don't agree with a lot of what you write but you know, you don't deserve to have an entire thread attacking you.

Anastasios
 
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