Holy Fathers

31 May, 2009


Today we celebrate the annual memory of the God-bearing Fathers who assembled in Nicea.

They laid low the godless doctrines of Arius, driving him from the unity of the Catholic Church, and teaching us how to confess the consubstantial and co-eternal Son of God.

They expressed this clearly in the Symbol of Faith, and we follow their divine doctrines, believing in and serving the Son with the Father and the all-Holy Spirit, the consubstantial Trinity and one Divinity.


That’s Funny

29 May, 2009

Deacon Greg points to this AP article about the WCC attempt to force decide upon a common date for Pascha.

Christianity’s largest ecumenical movement expressed hope Thursday that churches were moving closer to a common Easter for the world’s Christians, despite a historical debate nearly as old as the religion.

Catholic and Protestant congregations will celebrate their belief in Jesus’ resurrection on the same day as Orthodox churches in 2010 and 2011 because of a coincidence in the Julian and Gregorian calendars. The common holiday has happened three times this decade.

But the World Council of Churches says consensus is emerging that these should not just be occasional occurrences.

At a recent meeting in Lviv, Ukraine, theologians representing nearly the breadth of Christianity agreed in principle on a strategy for all the faithful to continue observing their feast together.

These people are so naïve it’s almost cute:

“It’s not a problem of principle, of dogma or of doctrine,” said Juan Michel, spokesman for the council

Actually, Juan, it is.

“There are of course some fundamentalist Orthodox who say ‘The Julian calendar is our tradition and it was used in Jesus’ lifetime so we cannot change,'” Heller said, adding that some Eastern theologians might fear more breaks in their church as a result of a date change.

Well, Dagmar, I’m not quite sure what a “fundamentalist Orthodox” could possibly be, but it’s a bit more than some theologians might fear breaks. It’s more on the order of death and taxes sure.

Read the article, and get the impression that the Orthodox are ready to jump on the new Pascha date train. Note, however, that the only Orthodox mentioned are theologians, all unnamed. These ecumenical groups are utterly unaware. You don’t see a mention of a bishop, because no bishop would do anything but laugh in these idiots’ faces, and if a bishop did make some kind of positive mutterings about this new, improved Pascha date, he would be slapped soundly by his brother bishops, not to mention the laity.

These mainstream Protestant groups have completely abandoned Christianity for the social gospel heresy, and have been in a constant state of flux for so long that true ecclesial and theological conservatism — holding on to Christianity — escapes them entirely. This will go nowhere. If the Orthodox do notice, they’ll say, “Never!” quite firmly, and these post-Christian church folks will wonder why not.

They don’t get it.

They would, no doubt, be shocked to come to my parish and observe how many cross themselves at “One holy catholic and apostolic church” during the Creed (actually, they’d probably be shocked that we haven’t dropped the Creed for some sort of Gaia worship statement).

You want a common date for Pascha? We got your Pascha date right here.

A recommendation

29 May, 2009

Should you be considering joining Orthodox PSALM, a mailing list on Yahoo ostensibly for those interested in Orthodox liturgical music, I’d recommend that you not waste your time. It’s fairly high traffic, and so far, absolutely nothing useful or informative has come into my inbox. It’s also populated by pompous ignorants who “massage” texts, meaning that they create ungrammatical texts, where for example, they only use “thou/thy/thine/thee” to refer to the Deity because they’re too stupid to know that they’re second person singular pronouns, not Deity pronouns. There are people who apparently got a B in that introductory linguistics class they took ten years ago, remember about ten percent of what they learned and misremember half of that, and consider themselves linguists; and there is one particularly pompous woman who graces us with her critique of the Orthodox Study Bible translation, because of course, she knows far more than Orthodox biblical scholars.

If there’s anything that drives me nuts it’s pseudo-intellectuals who have an inflated sense of their own knowledge and want to lecture others.

Not hungry? See this.

27 May, 2009

Ain’t much better than cracklins.


Pork fat, meat, and skin, double deep-fried. Boy howdy!

Byzantine chant

27 May, 2009

Great Doxology, Byzantine Tone 4:

Evlogitaria of the Resurrection, Byzantine Tone 5:

God and country

25 May, 2009

A U.S. soldier covers his face with a scarf during a patrol in Baquba, in Diyala province some 65 km (40 miles) northeast of Baghdad October 17, 2008. The scarf has verses from Psalms 91 of the Bible printed on it.

–REUTERS/Goran Tomasevic (IRAQ)


Psalm 90 (91)

He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.

I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust.

Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence.

He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler.

Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day;

Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday.

A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee.

Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked.

Because thou hast made the LORD, which is my refuge, even the most High, thy habitation;

There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling.

For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.

They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.

Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet.

Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name.

He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him.

With long life will I satisfy him, and shew him my salvation.


23 May, 2009

archmelchisedek On Saturday, June 27, 2009, His Beatitude, Metropolitan Jonah and the members of the Holy Synod of Bishops of the Orthodox Church in America will consecrate Archimandrite Melchisedek (Pleska) Bishop of Pittsburgh and the Diocese of Western Pennsylvania.

The rite of consecration will take place at a Hierarchical Divine Liturgy at St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, Allison Park, PA, beginning at 8:30 AM. On Friday evening, June 26, the Rite of Nomination and Proclamation will take place at the cathedral at 7:00 PM, immediately before Vespers.

The rest is on the OCA site.