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AMM #305709 11/29/08 06:19 PM
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Originally Posted by AMM
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Fortunately, where I live in New York there is a lack of interest and no fascination whatsoever in changing one's religion

That is not fortunate for Orthodoxy.

Dear Andrew,

I know this will be misunderstood and even condemned, but since my neighbors are Roman Catholic and Jewish, I see no need for them to become Orthodox..Perhaps it is a New Yorker (I am third generation New York city born) kind of thing--as in: mind your own business and respect the diversity of the city. This mentality has enabled the great experiment of different religions and cultures to live together in harmony..almost an unprecedented thing.

What I will be thrilled to see is a non-observant, social Jew become a religious Jew or a non-observant and unreligious Catholic become devout and religious one. If they chose to become Eastern Orthodox, fine...wherever the spirit moves you to come closer to and more cognizant of our God.

(For the record, the Greek Orthodox churches in the NY/NJ/Ct area do have a number of Roman Catholic converts--primarily through marriage!)

In Christ,
Alice

Alice #305711 11/29/08 07:38 PM
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I think you misunderstood my point. I think the phenomenon you're describing is not an issue of lacking an interest in changing one's religion, it is an issue of a lack of interest in religion at all. That is not fortunate for Orthodoxy in the Northeast primarily because there is no reason to think it will be immune from the same forces. The church needs converts, but without its core it won't exist at all.

The Mormons indeed have strange theology, but look at the fruit they bear from it. It is an example to us. They are extremely family oriented, they pray, the tithe at very high levels, their young people willingly go out on missions, etc.

There's food for thought there.

AMM #305743 11/30/08 12:52 AM
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Being a native New Yorker myself, I should like to support Alice's point. The substantial presence of communities (note the plural) of strongly observant Jews, and various Christian communities (including both Eastern Orthodox and Greek-Catholics) makes a huge contribution to the cultural mosaic of New York, that other cities might well envy!

Fr. Serge

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Then the Mormons should be welcomed to the mosaic.

Alice #305846 12/01/08 05:02 PM
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I try to have some Catholic or Orthodox literature on hand (a pamphlet about church architecture or the Eucharist works well). When they attempt to give me something to read (or when the Jehovah's Witnesses give me a Watchtower publication) I simply say, "I'll be happy to read yours if you'll read mine."

Since neither group is allowed to accept or read such literature they usually leave.

You can also offer them use of your holy water font. LOL

Now if only I could find something that worked so well for Southern Baptists, Church of Christ and the ubiquitous "Non-Denominational" types.

Last edited by Carole; 12/01/08 05:04 PM.
AMM #305853 12/01/08 05:45 PM
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The insistently proselytizing behaviour of the Mormons and the Jehovah's Witnesses has made them unwelcome. And not only in New York.

Fr. Serge

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Didn't the same happen to the apostles?

AMM #305865 12/01/08 07:37 PM
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I would not compare the Mormons with the Apostles, even though they are being targeted for their support of Prop 8.

Terry

Terry Bohannon #305871 12/01/08 08:41 PM
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I'm speaking strictly in terms of the behavior. I think you can see the parallel.

AMM #305881 12/01/08 11:19 PM
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I would not compare the Mormons to the Apostles either. While it is true that the Mormons have grown significantly (and lost significantly), it hardly comes equal to the Miracle of Diffusion.

Nor do I really find the missionary preaching by the Apostles to resemble the behavior of the Mormons.

Fr. Serge

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The source of the behavior and the ends of their hopes are very different. I refer to the spiritual authority of the Apostles and stress the importance of a well informed theology.

Good moral standards are not enough. The early Christians were not asked to merely behave like the good pagans, in treating others with hospitality and kindness. The demand was deeper; it was a demand of faith. I cannot see the parallel between the Mormons and Apostles.

Terry

Terry Bohannon #305926 12/02/08 07:12 PM
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I cannot see the parallel between the Mormons and Apostles.

The parallel is in the willingness to visibly and actively reach others, and in the process be looked at with revulsion and disdain for doing so.

The parallel is there. Picture the apostles in NYC.

Last edited by AMM; 12/02/08 07:13 PM.
AMM #305932 12/02/08 10:06 PM
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If the comparison is to be measured by that condition, then I see what you mean. But there have been many groups which have striven with similar determination and courage. I could just as easily offer up the parallel with the Trotskites and their willingness to visibly and actively reach the Marxist-Leninist, and being looked at with disdain as they were shot or shoved into the Gulag.

Last edited by Terry Bohannon; 12/02/08 10:17 PM.
Terry Bohannon #305935 12/02/08 10:35 PM
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AMM,

Maybe it is my Southern Protestant background talking, but I agree with you that Catholics and definitely Eastern Christians could learn a thing or two from the Mormons' effective and persistent proselytizing.

Alexis

AMM #305941 12/02/08 11:24 PM
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Picture the apostles in NYC.

I have seen successors of the Apostles in New York, and many of them were not doing badly.

I have also seen the Jehovah's Witnesses in New York. They did not conduct themselves in such a way as to make the general public anxious to listen to them.

Fr. Serge

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