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Re: St. Alexis: a dilemma [Re: Converted Viking] #372938 12/11/11 10:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Converted Viking
Originally Posted by Slavipodvizhnik
Originally Posted by ajk
And what did Fr. Alexis accomplish for his people, his church? Russification and assimilation and the effective loss of their unique identity?


And what exactly did those who chose not to follow St Alexis accomplish? Latinization and assimilation and the loss of their Traditions.

Alexandr


Alexander:

Dead on
!

Seraphim
That there is a sui iuris Metropolitan Church of Pittsburgh proves you wrong. It has emerged -- is emerging -- from the period of Latinizations and has retained as a church its unique heritage and traditions. Does the OCA use a Ruthenian recension for the liturgy? In how many of its parishes does one hear Carpathian chant? The sui iuris Church of Pittsburgh is the (in via) triumph of distinctiveness over assimilation (attrition is a separate issue as is self-destruction).


Re: St. Alexis: a dilemma [Re: Irish Melkite] #372940 12/11/11 11:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Irish Melkite
Originally Posted by Apotheoun
I admire those who did what they believed they had to do (whether by staying or leaving).


I would have to agree with my brother....

Neil
I sympathize with all my heart over the issues as I do for some martyrs of a wrong cause. I do not admire because schism is wrong and ultimately (if it's not trivializing the issue) it is a profound and concrete statement about ecclesiology, theology. The original focus of my admiration, however, was more specific and dealt with identity. As a disclaimer, I'm not arguing for ethnicity or some kind of phyletism: there should be no ethnic churches (in the strict sense) but it is proper to preserve and hand on an ethnic heritage especially in the form of liturgical expression (see my previous post).

Re: St. Alexis: a dilemma [Re: Irish Melkite] #372941 12/11/11 12:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Irish Melkite
Originally Posted by Michael_Thoma
What's the difference in the history of the OCA and ACROD? From what I remember, there is an overlap -- why the separate hierarchy? Aren't these both Ruthenian/Little Rusyns?


Michael,

What follows is a simplistic explanation and I may well be corrected by my ACROD brethren, particularly Father David or DMD, but it's how I see it ...

The OCA derived from the Russian Metropolia. Saint Alexis turned to the latter because it was the sole Slavic Orthodox jurisdiction with a presence in the US at the time. Thus, although the faithful who entered into it were principally Rusyn, the Church itself was Russian and the majority of its new congregants were, over time, Russified - losing much of their own historical praxis.

By the time that ACROD came into existence, those who would be its faithful were comfortable in their own culture and eager to retain it - pursuing the right to practice their faith as they had historically. But, they also believed that they could take the necessary steps to do so without needing to be part of a 'foreign' hierarchical structure. That, I'm certain, was easier to do (and probably seemed more natural) with several decades behind them as 'Americans' (unlike their counterparts of 4 decades earlier, many of whom were still, essentially, freshly emigrated). When ACROD did come into reception by the EP (a year or two after the breakaway began), it was a decidedly less controlling environment into which they entered.

Many years,

Neil


Well put!

Re: St. Alexis: a dilemma [Re: Michael_Thoma] #372942 12/11/11 12:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Michael_Thoma
Aren't these both Ruthenian/Little Rusyns?
And those "Little Rusyns" are so cute, everyone just wants to squeeze them to bits and gobble them up!

Re: St. Alexis: a dilemma [Re: ajk] #372957 12/11/11 05:30 PM
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"That there is a sui iuris Metropolitan Church of Pittsburgh proves you wrong. It has emerged -- is emerging -- from the period of Latinizations and has retained as a church its unique heritage and traditions. Does the OCA use a Ruthenian recension for the liturgy? In how many of its parishes does one hear Carpathian chant? The sui iuris Church of Pittsburgh is the (in via) triumph of distinctiveness over assimilation (attrition is a separate issue as is self-destruction)."

Ah, but has the sui iuris Metropolitan Church of Pittsburgh maintained the faith that what was handed down to them? There is a whole Forum section pertaining to the new Ruined Divine Liturgy that says it has not. Tell me, would St Alexis or any of his parishioners feel more at home in, say, the Cathedral in Munhall, or The ROCOR Cathedral in Mayfield? Where will they hear the services in Slavonic? Where will they see the full cycle of services being performed? Where will they hear, for example, Preterp'vyj? It sure won't be Munhall. Your for-bearers would not even recognize your Calendar, much less your present services. The New and Improved Byzantine Catholic Church has very little left in common with what the Carpatho-Russian coal miners and steel workers brought over here. Latin Rite Lite with smells and bells.

As far as Russification, yes, it has occurred. But I put it to you that Russification was far better to the Carpatho-Russians than Latinization. At least it was done with kindred Slavs and with love. The Latin bishops spit on the Rusnaks. The Russians welcomed them with open arms. And I rejoice in the fact that there now exists a Carpatho-Russian Diocese that has maintained Prostopenije and other distinguishing hallmarks peculiar to the Carpatho-Russians, and is shedding the remaining vestiges of the heavy foot of the Latins and is increasing in Orthopraxis every day.

Alexandr

Re: St. Alexis: a dilemma [Re: Slavipodvizhnik] #372960 12/11/11 07:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Slavipodvizhnik
Ah, but has the sui iuris Metropolitan Church of Pittsburgh maintained the faith that what was handed down to them?
Yes, very much so. That is the very point: the original emigrant Catholic (ante schisms) faith.

Originally Posted by Slavipodvizhnik
There is a whole Forum section pertaining to the new Ruined Divine Liturgy that says it has not.
The RDL pertains to questionable revisions, abridgements, and poor translations, and not the faith itself. This I know. That you do not means you do not understand an essential difference.

Originally Posted by Slavipodvizhnik
Tell me, would St Alexis or any of his parishioners feel more at home in, say, the Cathedral in Munhall, or The ROCOR Cathedral in Mayfield?
Parishioners in Munhall; St Alexis in Mayfield; Fr. Alexis in Munhall. (shrug???)

Originally Posted by Slavipodvizhnik
Your for-bearers would not even recognize your Calendar, much less your present services.
Being well balanced people they (BCC) accepted a correct calendar for an incorrect one, also realizing that it not only caused no inherent disruption in their liturgical life but actually restored their liturgical cycle to its harmony with nature (i.e. cosmos, seasons, sun, earth, etc.).

Originally Posted by Slavipodvizhnik
The New and Improved Byzantine Catholic Church has very little left in common with what the Carpatho-Russian coal miners and steel workers brought over here. Latin Rite Lite with smells and bells.
Glad you said this -- shows how wrong you are.

Originally Posted by Slavipodvizhnik
... Where will they hear, for example, Preterp'vyj?
Oh, the way we sing Preterp'vyj ... unmatched I'd say but then so would most if not all of the BCC parishes about themselves.

Originally Posted by Slavipodvizhnik
... And I rejoice in the fact that there now exists a Carpatho-Russian Diocese[*,ajk] that has maintained Prostopenije and other distinguishing hallmarks peculiar to the Carpatho-Russians, and is shedding the remaining vestiges of the heavy foot of the Latins and is increasing in Orthopraxis every day.
Yes, "rejoice" and even four Eparchies as a Metropolitan church.

---------------------------
* Diocese: "vestiges of the heavy foot of the Latins" term for Eparchy

Re: St. Alexis: a dilemma [Re: ajk] #372963 12/11/11 10:31 PM
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Christ is in our midst!!

The original post asked about venerating St. Alexis of Wilkes-Barre.


Quote
St Alexis of Wilkes-Barre. I just learned of him. A former Eastern Catholic cleric who got push back from a certain Bishop John Ireland. He then became an Orthodox priest and set about to convert other Eastern Catholics.

What to make of him as a Eastern Catholic. Not to get up anyone's nose or just to foment controversy, but does he "count" as saint for Eastern Catholics?


In no part of this do I see the need for the back and forth that this has come to. In this season when we anticipate the Feast of the Incarnation, I think it would be best if we looked past the history that has divided the Rusyn people in the United States. In all charity, the group that made its way into the Russian Metropolia, the group that made its way to the Ecumenical Patriarchate, and the group that remains in the Catholic Communion--all of them--have been harmed by the Great Schism and its fallout. It seems to me, as an outsider with no dog in this fight that this is the tragedy of a small group caught between much larger groups and ground down in the fray.

Let's stay on target with the veneration of this saint and stop the controversary about calendars and who best preserved the Ruthenian rescension and in what context.

If we can't do this, this thread will be closed.

Bob
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Re: St. Alexis: a dilemma [Re: Thessalonius Monk] #372966 12/11/11 11:41 PM
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To the original post, I think st. Alexis is venerated by the Russian catholic parish in San Francisco at the very least.

As for my part, I consider him a saint.

Re: St. Alexis: a dilemma [Re: Thessalonius Monk] #372977 12/12/11 02:16 AM
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To get back to the original question, if you feel drawn to St. Alexis, by all means pray for his intercession. I know of Orthodox who pray for the intercessions of Theodore Romzha, even though, technically, he is schismatic in Orthodox eyes. Truly, wondrous is God in His Saints!

Alexandr

Re: St. Alexis: a dilemma [Re: theophan] #372994 12/12/11 12:55 PM
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Originally Posted by theophan

Let's stay on target with the veneration of this saint...
Sounds like the verdict is in then on what appeared to be a question. Is this forum policy: "...the veneration of this saint..."? Disagree and "...this thread will be closed."?

Re: St. Alexis: a dilemma [Re: ajk] #372995 12/12/11 01:23 PM
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Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by theophan

Let's stay on target with the veneration of this saint...
Sounds like the verdict is in then on what appeared to be a question. Is this forum policy: "...the veneration of this saint..."? Disagree and "...this thread will be closed."?


Deacon Tony,

May I suggest you not be disingenuous - it doesn't become you. Bob's post is clear - return to the topic of the thread. Subsequent posts which don't choose to address the topic will be deleted, as will posts that choose to argue the moderator's point!

Many years,

Neil

Last edited by Irish Melkite; 12/12/11 01:24 PM.

"One day all our ethnic traits ... will have disappeared. Time itself is seeing to this. And so we can not think of our communities as ethnic parishes, ... unless we wish to assure the death of our community."
Re: St. Alexis: a dilemma [Re: Irish Melkite] #372997 12/12/11 01:37 PM
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Slava Isusu Khresty

I am reminded of a story, (I believe I have mentioned before in this forum but will put it in here now) told our people in church one Sunday when someone ask Father, " Are there Catholics in heaven?"

He replied, " No, there are no Catholics in heaven" and continued, " there are no Orthodox either!" Most of the older people just about fainted!!!!! Then Father continued, " There are only the follows of Christ in heaven"

So to the followers of Christ in heaven, I pray for their intersession.

Unworthy and a sinner

Kolya

Re: St. Alexis: a dilemma [Re: Thessalonius Monk] #372999 12/12/11 02:56 PM
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We can see the same situation playing out within the Episcopal Church today, where, because of the innovations imposed by the hierarchy, large numbers of parishes are breaking away into traditional or Anglo-Catholic communions or joining the Ordinariate established to receive traditional Anglicans into the Catholic Church. In many cases, the Episcopal Church is bringing suit against the "dissidents" to retain title to church property. In most cases, they win, in large part because of presidents established by the Ruthenian law suits of the 1930s. The bitterness that ensues, however, is just as great and will take just as long to heal.

I tell my Anglican friends to just walk away from the property, because the fight isn't worth it (and in many cases, victory will bounce back to bite the Episcopal hierarchy, because without the "dissidents" to fill those parishes, no one will be able to pay the bill--and, as many parishes are on historic preservation lists, it will be difficult for the Episcopal Church to sell them to developers). However, people invest a lot of themselves in the brick and mortar. In many cases, generations of their families are buried in those churchyards, and other psychological ties bind them to the parish. But the parish is people, not buildings.

Re: St. Alexis: a dilemma [Re: Irish Melkite] #373005 12/12/11 06:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Irish Melkite
Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by theophan

Let's stay on target with the veneration of this saint...
Sounds like the verdict is in then on what appeared to be a question. Is this forum policy: "...the veneration of this saint..."? Disagree and "...this thread will be closed."?


Deacon Tony,

May I suggest you not be disingenuous - it doesn't become you. Bob's post is clear - return to the topic of the thread. Subsequent posts which don't choose to address the topic will be deleted, as will posts that choose to argue the moderator's point!

Many years,

Neil
Neil,

I am very dismayed that you have chosen to characterize me in this way and even PUBLICLY. It is presumptuous of you to do so and you are wrong. Consequently, I must ask for a public retraction at the least -- an apology would be quite in order. "Bob's post" is what I have quoted retaining the context. Furthermore, I gave him the courtesy of putting my response in the general form of questions such that he could clarify what he wrote if he chose. I still have not received an answer; instead, I am maligned.

As a matter of integrity, please do not edit or delete this post.

Deacon Tony


Re: St. Alexis: a dilemma [Re: Irish Melkite] #373007 12/12/11 06:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Irish Melkite
Originally Posted by Michael_Thoma
What's the difference in the history of the OCA and ACROD? From what I remember, there is an overlap -- why the separate hierarchy? Aren't these both Ruthenian/Little Rusyns?


Michael,

What follows is a simplistic explanation and I may well be corrected by my ACROD brethren, particularly Father David or DMD, but it's how I see it ...

The OCA derived from the Russian Metropolia. Saint Alexis turned to the latter because it was the sole Slavic Orthodox jurisdiction with a presence in the US at the time. Thus, although the faithful who entered into it were principally Rusyn, the Church itself was Russian and the majority of its new congregants were, over time, Russified - losing much of their own historical praxis.

By the time that ACROD came into existence, those who would be its faithful were comfortable in their own culture and eager to retain it - pursuing the right to practice their faith as they had historically. But, they also believed that they could take the necessary steps to do so without needing to be part of a 'foreign' hierarchical structure. That, I'm certain, was easier to do (and probably seemed more natural) with several decades behind them as 'Americans' (unlike their counterparts of 4 decades earlier, many of whom were still, essentially, freshly emigrated). When ACROD did come into reception by the EP (a year or two after the breakaway began), it was a decidedly less controlling environment into which they entered.

Many years,

Neil


I would add a few points to both Stuart's and Neil's synopsis. First, there is an excellent history, written from ACROD's point of view of its website. http://www.acrod.org/diocese/history This together with this article make for a good starting point on ACROD's history and, to some extent, its 'raison d'etre' in face of the existence of the Metropolia at the time of the 'cum data fuerit' battle in the 1930's. http://www.acrod.org/diocese/history/anniversary

As the two great empires (Russian and Austro-Hungarian) were in their waning days at the same time as the massive population shift to the new world took place, Russian agents were hard at work mining the poverty and discontent of the Rusyns, Lemkos and Ukrainians who labored under the yoke of Magyar oppression. Pan slavism (under Russian domination) was a very real force and one which many in both the old and new worlds viewed as a positive force for their peoples. It was into that environment that St. Alexis was thrust and into the omophorion of the Russian Church that his people followed him.

However, by the 1920's and 1930's there was great disillusionment with the Russians among the Rusyns and others as a result of the Russification campaigns which were waged with ferocity among the new converts.

As the impact of 'cum data fuerit' started to take hold, another wave of discontent followed. Originally led by the editors of the Greek Catholic Union and priests associated with the GCU, an organization dedicated to seeking peaceful change in attitude from the Holy See was established - the Committee for the Preservation of the Eastern Rite or KOVO. KOVO did NOT originate to drive further schism or additional moves into Orthodoxy within the Greek Catholic community - the loss of the patrimony and cultural heritage of the first wave of converts had soured most, including Frs. Chornock and Molchany on Orthodoxy and their initial goals were to assert what they believed were the rights guaranteed by the Unions of Brest and Uzhorod in the new world and to obtain a non-Magyarized Bishop to replace Bishop Basil Takach, who was of a Magyar leaning disposition (and accent.)

(Again, by 1930, Rusification had lost its 'allure' in light of the excesses of the USSR and the 'Red Scare' in the west.)

Needless to say, Rome did not take kindly to this movement. Most of the priests who supported KOVO initially were left with little choice but to proclaim their loyalty to their Bishop or face deportation in the middle of the depression and the lay officers of the GCU who supported KOVO and who controlled the publication wing of the GCU at that time were excommunicated and removed from office. (Being a Greek Catholic in good standing was an element of being a GCU member.)

Those who remained with KOVO took on the slogan - 'Neither to Rome( i.e. the Greek Catholic Eparchy of Pittsburgh), nor to Moscow (i.e., the Metropolia (now OCA)' hence they sought refuge with Constantinople and the Greeks where we remain to the present day.

Hope this helped. I know that there is 'another side' to this story as related by those who remained loyal to the Greek Catholic Church, but this explains the distinction between the OCA and ACROD.

The impact of these schisms on families, communities, churches and the Rusyn culture remains severe even onto the present day in spite of better relations in the USA over the past twenty years.

Last edited by DMD; 12/12/11 06:40 PM.
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