No actors at the altar?

Agence France-Presse reports that the Greek Orthodox Church is including actors among the professions that would make unsuitable candidates for the clergy. Apparently the Greeks regard acting as a “most soul-corrupting and harmful” vocation.

Hmmm. If the Roman Catholics had followed this rule, they would have deprived themselves of one of their best Popes.

FWIW, other professions barred from the Greek Orthodox clergy include “wine-shop keepers, members of the armed forces and, given a recent embarrassing series of corruption scandals, politicans and lawyers.” Gynecologists and coroners need not apply, either. However, appointment to the clergy is open to “farmers, fishermen, beekeepers, candle-makers, carpenters and cobblers,” as well as men who work in more modern fields like “seismology, meteorology, biology and astronomy.”

About Peter T. Chattaway

Peter T. Chattaway was the regular film critic for BC Christian News from 1992 to 2011. In addition to his film column, which won multiple awards from the Evangelical Press Association, the Canadian Church Press and the Fellowship of Christian Newspapers, his news and opinion pieces have appeared in such publications as Books & Culture, Christianity Today, Bible Review and the Vancouver Sun. He also contributed essays to the books Re-Viewing The Passion: Mel Gibson’s Film and Its Critics (Palgrave Macmillan, 2004) and Scandalizing Jesus?: Kazantzakis’s The Last Temptation of Christ Fifty Years on (Continuum, 2005).

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05485903823729299376 Darrel Manson

    what about film critics?

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/03147734669353799982 Martin

    Candlemakers and beekeepers — that makes a lot of sense if you’ve ever been inside a Greek Orthodox place of worship. The Church, undoubtedly the number-one consumer of beeswax candles in Greece, appears to sustain both industries.

    On the other hand, wouldn’t the Church consume a fair amount of wine in celebrating the sacrament? So what’s with the ban on wine-shop keepers?

    It’s a little curious that they exclude members of the armed forces. Most if not all Greek males are required to serve therein — I think it’s 18 months. It must be just career soldiers the Church has decided it doesn’t like. One wonders, then, why St. George, a soldier, is so popular in Greece.

    I’m quite aware that any of these professions can be “soul-corrupting and harmful,” but then, so can biology and astronomy, at least for the practitioners thereof who think their professions have disproved the existence of God. I’m not convinced that any of them are necessarily soul-corrupting and harmful in the way that, say, pornography, organized crime, and prostitution are likely to be.

    And where is the idea of redemption — the notion that a new vocation can ameliorate the harmful effects of the old one? Sure, Jesus called a lot of fishermen to be his apostles, but he also called a politician and a tax collector.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/14715376140228118442 Jeffrey Overstreet

    Hmm. I’ve wondered if there shouldn’t be some moratorium on actors running for president…

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/03147734669353799982 Martin

    Not to mention movie producers, baseball team owners, and oilmen?


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