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Byzantine Nebraska
Byzantine Nebraska
by orthodoxsinner2, December 11
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The root cause is likely also related to the fashion in which our church was ill prepared for the ethnic-American boufants in all shades that Lady Clairol herself could imagine actually passing from vitality.

How many of our parishes in the Pirohy Belt have been run by folks collecting social security for how long? Like proto-babushki we counted on their free time and labor to work bingo, make pyrohy, and show up on Sundays. They kept homefires burning, but for whom to come home to? (That isn't anti senior sentiment in the least, that is pointing out that clocks tick and our fertility and retention rates have been abysmal.)

My own beloved home parish in my hometown counted me (when I lived there before college) as one of maybe a half a dozen members that did not experience the Eisenhower administration (let alone voted in the elections!).

Now before we jump on the sensationalism of sex scandals questions that need to be asked are:

  • What were the ratios of baptisms to funerals?
  • What was the parish income level compared to the eparchial norms?
  • How many folks were rostered? How many attended?

Depending upon your half-empty/half-full perspective Eastern communities are either suffering or holding their own. Further, depending upon your half-empty/half-full perspective the closings are either accelorated by Catholic canonical impediments against trusteeship/presbyteral self-support or forestalled by trustees told "support yourselves, pay your assesments" and allowed the leniancy of bi-vocational, self-supporting clergy.

The OCA parish in our city that is the oldest (they have split a few times - but we are in a post-ethnic settlement area here, they were never Greek Catholic, there is no rivalry - we both set up shop in the late 60s, immigrating here from the Pyrohy Belt) has the possibility to outlast us even though we are bigger and have our own building... They could do so on the strength of the fact they have four attached clergyman and they own their own building... As long as they beg, borrow or borrow (Easterners don't steal!) to keep the lights on and the water running, and as long as at least one of their four priests will support himself or collect retirement/SS, they will stay open longer...

But does that constitute growth or stability?

Folks it may be too late, but it is still worth asking: What are we doing to reverse this when the writing is on the wall for Byzantine Christians not enjoying new immigration: Get new members or fade either into non existence or go the way of very tiny Protestant family run churches??? What is to be done and how? What are our long term strategies for passing on a church to our grandchildren and great grandchildren?

Last edited by A Simple Sinner; 04/30/08 05:16 AM.
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What are we doing to reverse this

I'm sorry...too many people are buying into the story that it is because of the people that the BCC is dying...I will go back to the it is the clergy and heirarchy responsible!!! I think St. John the Baptist in Trumbull, CT is the perfect example...the parish split back in the 40's 1/2 remained Greek Catholic 1/2 went Orthodox with Fr. Chornack...the 1/2 that remained Greek Catholic is now on the brink of extinction...the 1/2 that went Orthodox is now 3 parishes that are growing and doing well!!! I know, I am part of the smallest of the 3 parishes and we have 15 children...

As long as the clergy and heirarchy continue to "turn a deaf ear" the people are wasting their energy...

Job

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"As long as the clergy and heirarchy continue to "turn a deaf ear" the people are wasting their energy..."

Turn a deaf ear? That is putting it mildly. What kind of a church gives its people two weeks notice to get out? No spiritual guidance, no assistance to help them merge or find other parishes? Get out? This treatment of elderly people and families with young, impressionable children is cruel and inhumane. In the case of Smithtown it amounts to slow, painful torture, and no one has the decency to speak with these people as simple human beings, let alone pastorally.
I am appalled and disheartened as a Byzantine Catholic and a Christian. In such a small church it is unbelievable that there is such a large chasm between the people of God and their shepherds.

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""I know, I am part of the smallest of the 3 parishes and we have 15 children..."

How many members in each and are the priest bi-vocational or otherwise dependent on a secondary income?

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It seems to me that ordaining/permitting bi-vocational and multiple clergy is definitely a route to explore, especially with mustard-seed congregations. The roots of this can be seen in St. Paul's work as a tentmaker.

As to the tragic situations coming out of Passaic, I think no one has any doubt as to its source. One must wonder, however, why the source of such misery and mismanagement appears to still have such a pivotal and public role in running the eparchy.

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Ditto, Ebed. It is beyond belief.

Sam

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Can anyone give any other reasons why the Passaic Diocese needed millions and millions of dollars so quickly and went about getting it with absolute disregard even for Churches that were viable and self sustaining?




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None of the three parishes have a "bi-vocational" priest. Although, my pastor is single and has a military pension and I don't know about the other pani's...but even if they work that is no different than most American Families...

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Originally Posted by Pocono Byzantine
Are you saying Fr. Dan was involved in a SEX SCANDAL? LOL

Liquidating assets in Smithtown doesn't necessarily mean the allagations were against Fr. Dan...simply that's where the assets are to liquidate...

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I don't understand any of this. Hang in there as I my have missed something along the way but why are parishes that are perking along and doing just fine being liquidated.

I am in my angry mode now and I will say it like it see it. This whole thing seems to be nothing more than the sacking and pillaging of the Byzantine Church by the very leaders who should being doing all they can to protect it.

Converted Viking

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"This whole thing seems to be nothing more than the sacking and pillaging of the Byzantine Church by the very leaders who should being doing all they can to protect it."

Doesn't it though?

I am guessing the parishes that were chosen for destruction were the parishes with the highest property value. You don't see this kind of situation in say, Palmerton, where the property is worth squat and the amount of parishioners/income is less than in the other parishes.

My two cents worth,
Sam,


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My home parish in Windber PA is fighting "encroachment" from the Medical Center that already bought up most of the 3 block area near our temple. We are in the one of the most economic hard-hit areas of the "Pyrohi Rust Belt" where property values are at the bottom scale. We probably will be able to keep our adjoining lots because have a big physical plant that is in the center of three small parishes that will probably close and we would absorb those willing to drive the 6-10 miles to attend our services.

If these lots were a part of Passaic Eparchy, we'd probably close and sell the land to the highest bidder. But not to worry, there is land-o-plenty here in the "Pyrohi Rust Belt"!

Christos Voskrese! Voistinnu Voskrese!

Ung


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Originally Posted by Job
None of the three parishes have a bi-vocational priest. Although, my pastor is single and has a military pension and I don't know about the other pani's...but even if they work that is no different than most American Families...

And all three parishes are under the same jurisdiction?

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Yes...They are once again all in the same jurisdiction...although for a time the Church on Mill Hill was OCA and I believe the parish on Broadbridge Ave. was Ukranian Orthodox...The parish on Silver Lane has been ACROD since it's inception.

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Does anyone know the current status of the Church of the Resurrection in Smithtown?

Last edited by Anthony; 01/13/09 09:32 PM. Reason: grammar
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