26 November 2015
One person's problem choosing a church
from Joanna's note pad:
Someone said that someone said:
"I had seriously considered the GOC-K last year (2014) but the more I read the pompous and disturbing writings of this new Bishop of Etna and Portland and his cohort, Met. Chrysostomos, the more I backed away"
I do believe that someone said that. I'm actually very familiar with this distressing observation/complaint/stumbling block – whatever you want to call it.
We in ROCA are not permitted to publicly criticize our hierarchs, which would include the hierarchs in our Sister Churches. But conscience does not allow me to ignore the warranted distress of a convert. So let me say this:
Etna is not all of the GOC-K. Etna is not an accurate representative of the whole of the GOC-K. Etna is Etna and Etna has been Etna for a long long time (since the 1970s). Etna bishops have a voice in the GOC-K Synod, but they do not rule the Synod, and they have to answer to the Synod. Recently an Etna edict was imposed on a priest who then appealed to the Synod, and the Synod ruled in favor of the priest. No GOC-K bishops, including the Etna bishops, go completely unchecked. But caution is still advisable. If it is possible to join the GOC-K without going directly through Etna, then do not let Etna prevent you from seeking membership in a Royal Path jurisdiction.
No matter where you go there will be problems. Problems in non-Royal Path jurisdictions are likely to become debilitating and malignant. So even with the problems, you are better off in a Royal Path jurisdiction where there is at least a fighting chance against the wiles of the demons.