Friday, March 27, 2009

OCL responds to the EP talk at Holy Cross | AOI Observer

Some thoughts about a recent speech at Holy Cross School of Theology from the American Orthodox Institute blog. Your comments are, of course, welcome (but please, keep them charitable, by which I mean gentle.)

In Christ,

+Fr Gregory

George Michalopulos, Orthodox Christian Laity board member and frequent contributor to the AOI blog, penned the official OCL response to Arch. Elpidophoros Lambriniadis recent talk at AOI. Original article is posted on the OCL website.

An OCL Board Member Responds to the Message of Chief Secretary of The Holy and Sacred Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate
George Michalopulos

March 25, 2009 - the Feast of the Annunciation

I. Introduction: An Archimandrite Speaks

Recently, a certain archimandrite, the Very Rev Dr Elpidophoros Lambriniadis, spoke at Holy Cross School of Theology in Brookline, Massachusetts. His position is one of auxiliary professor at this seminary but his formal title is “Chief Secretary of the Holy and Sacred Synod.” His remarks thus were more than the observations of a mere academic; indeed he stated from the outset that they were authorized by the Ecumenical Patriarch himself and “with the consent” of Archbishop Demetrios, the primate of the Greek archdiocese.

What began as astute observations of American Orthodoxy by a highly educated clergyman-scholar quickly descended into vituperation, slander against other jurisdictions, and almost total ignorance of America. Moreover, his understanding of canon law and Byzantine history itself was questionable. It is unknown whether this was deliberate or merely the result of ignorance. At best, this willful twisting of history can be viewed as Phanariote propaganda, which like all good propaganda uses words and ideas for some higher purpose. The purpose of this reply is not only to identify that which is propagandistic, but to point out the severe internal and logical contradictions contained therein.

It has been reported that several of those who attended his lecture left in disgust in the midst of his speech and that of those who remained, disgruntled comments were audible upon the completion of his oration. The following day, during a private meeting with the faculty of Holy Cross, clear disagreements were enunciated towards him and his views. Others have pointed out in the interim that his speech should be viewed by many as the intellectual case (such as it is) of the Phanar regarding the claims it will press at the upcoming “Pan-Orthodox Synod” which is in the planning stages at present. Given his standing at the Phanar, his speech deserves serious consideration. More importantly, as seen within the turmoil of the GOA in the aftermath of the Ligonier Conference in 1994, the Phanar’s capabilities for mischief cannot be underestimated. (Henceforth, for purposes of brevity, I will refer to Archimandrite Lambrianides as “the speaker” and his remarks as “the speech.”

Read the rest here: OCL responds to the EP about Holy Cross talk.

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