The above warning was given to me when I first met Orthodoxy in 1986. Today [2009] it is even more perilous, even more difficult to find the Royal Path. For one thing there is a far greater abundance of misinformation. And many materials are missing, and other materials are being rapidly rewritten. For another thing there are fewer than ever guides remaining on the Royal Path, especially who speak English. Hopefully this website will be a place where Newcomers to the Faith can keep at least one foot on solid ground, while they are "exploring."

blog owner: Joanna Higginbotham


jurisdiction: ROCA under Vladyka Agafangel

who did not submit to the RocorMP union in 2007


24 February 2013

Jurisdictional Disputings

Can the disunity of the different Protestant sects be compared to the apparent disunity of the different Orthodox jurisdictions?

No.  At least, not by someone who can recognize the boundaries of the Church.   

The "disunity" in the Protestant world can not be compared with what superficially seems like disunity in the Orthodox world.  In reality there is no disunity in the Orthodox Church – the Church is One.   But in this fallen world, there are necessary separations within the One Church.  Two things illustrate what I mean:

The Holy Fire.  Notice how the Holy Fire comes to all Orthodox: even to the heretical Copts, even to the prison of the true Patriarch Irenios, even to the pseudo-patriarch freemason Bartholomew.  There is no "disunity" here.  But the Holy Fire does not come to Jesuits, Baptists, or etc.  You are either inside the Church or you are outside the Church.  Outside the Church, in the world, there is great disunity.  Christ did not pray for those in the world.  He specified in His prayer, "I pray not for the world" (John 17:9).  Christ's prayer does not apply to Protestants.  The disunity of the Protestants is not analogous to the necessary separations within the Orthodox Church.

The Letters to the Churches.
Revelations chapters 2 and 3.   Notice how the different Churches are separated not just by geography, but by their different spiritual conditions:  the faithful one is tested, the sinful one reproved, the indifferent one faces expulsion.  They are united under His Wing, but there are going to be necessary separations when a Church remains in unrepentant sin.  Such is the state of our fallen world, the wheat and the tares are permitted to grow side by side – the wheat and the tares being the individuals who are members of the Churches.  But yet, if we look past the world [the Church Militant] to the heavenly [the Church Triumphant] we see perfect oneness of the Church.

Recommended reading:
St. Ilarion New Martyr:
Archpriest  Michael Pomazansky
St. Cyprian of Carthage

An intellectual understanding is only the beginning.  As you grow in the Life of the Church through Her sacraments, this understanding becomes much more than an intellectual understanding – it becomes an experience.  You can look forward to this.

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