Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Another joy noticed ....

When we attended St. George Church in St. Paul on vacation, the regular priest was on vacation.

We noticed immediately that the priest did nothing in Greek, a bit of a surprise to us, but we didn't think much of it.

Turns out he was one of the priests from Holy Trinity Orthodox in St. Paul -- serving in the place of the vacation priest. It was a joy to see that a priest of another jurisdiction was able to serve the Divine Liturgy. Now, that is a contrast for me: when I was a Lutheran pastor, one in the LCMS did NOT have pastors from the ELCA or WELS (Lutherans understand the different letters, they are different synods, different juridictions) serving, and oft times one only had select pastors within their own synod serving.

Something different for me, but certainly a joy! It is also a joy to see priests from various jurisdictions joining at special services and at Divine Liturgy.


JTKlopcic said...

I think that it will be this sort of "grass-roots" exchange that will eventually bring about unity of jurisdictions in America. A couple of months ago, we took our children to a pan-Orthodox church camp for a weekend. They met kids from all over and shared some of their particular customs, such as language, revered saints, food...

All the kids viewed their differences as fun little quirks that gave their identity some character. Besides, most of them were children of converts anyway -- the jurisdictional allegiances just didn't run that deep. It will be in their generation that we will see unity.

Ezekiel said...

Over time, I believe, strongly held jurisdictional allegiances will recede, I'm sure.

However, we are in a fellowship that in practical reality transcends those jurisdictional line -- and for the time being, it appears to this humble writer that those lines currently serve as a bit of a check and balance, especially in this country and time.

Holy Mother Church already joins OCA, GOA, ROCOR, the Russian Church, the Bulgarian Church, the Serbian Church ... and the list goes on! We are one in Christ as Orthodox.

When the priest from Holy Trinity was invited by the priest at St. George to serve, the priest at St. George could count on him to serve the Divine Liturgy properly, and knew that he and his fellow priest were on theologically.

That certainly isn't the case in other church bodies!

I've also noted during my journey to and after my welcome into Orthodoxy that "pan-Orthodox" events are not the exception at all!

123 said...

Did you notice that St. George is next door to the larger of the two WELS high schools in the Twin Cities? A lot of my friends went to St. Croix Lutheran HS and my parents still get out there regularly for various things (e.g., soccer camps, handbells, etc.).

Was that Fr. Marc Boulos that served? If so, he chrismated my sister.

Cha said...

Small world, Ezekiel. Fr. Bill is from my parish!

Ezekiel said...

-c, I thought of that when he mentioned who he was. I didn't have a chance to really speak with him.

Christopher: no, Fr. Bill Neuman served. I really didn't check out the neighborhood, although your comments brough foggy stuff to mind from years ago! :)

Rosko said...

It was at St George that I first had my hands on experiences with Orthodoxy. Fr Rick (the regular priest) and I talked for no less than an hour on more than one occasion. And look at me now. After toeing the line for a while, then backing down, I'm now set to be Chrismated on Sunday. Glory to God for all things!

Harry (former SSP member)

Ezekiel said...


God be praised!

Will you be chrismated at St. George or another parish?

Rosko said...

As I am living in IL now, I will be Chrismated at St Joseph in Wheaton. It's a parish of the OCA. I can't wait.