Speaking of Orthodox Unity

Speaking of Orthodox Unity May 2, 2006

The question is often asked, “When will there be an American Orthodox Church?” This refers, of course, to “Administrative Unity” but, as it involves worldly concerns such as money, property, and power, it’s easier wished for than done.

One can often read statements — such as the much dissected speech by Fr Thomas Hopko — which could lead one to think that the time is now.

Folks, the time may never be now for all of us at one time. Bottom line? The current Patriarch of Constantinople is against it.

Fine. What’s to prevent the Antiochians and the Orthodox Church in America (OCA) — and any other Orthodox jurisdiction — from moving forward toward this God-pleasing goal?

Most everyone’s aware that this is a difficult time for the OCA. This, too, shall pass. Every “jurisdiction” goes through tough times and trials. There’s no jurisdictional monopoly on shortcomings and failure.

On this day, May 2, SCOBA is meeting. Among other items, a Call for Orthodox Unity is on the Agenda. The spirit seems willing but the flesh (see above) is weak.

Then there’s this …

Prayer for Orthodox Unity

O All Holy Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit: We Thy faithful children beseech Thee to forgive us the sin of divisiveness, which is rooted in our hearts, our dioceses and land. Implant in our lives the holy vine of unity which only Thou canst bestow on those who have come together in Thy name. Enlighten us with Thy grace so that we may come to the knowledge of Thy truth and move our hearts to respond with trust and total obedience to Thy divine will. Through the intercessions of the God-inspired Holy Fathers of the First Ecumenical Council at Nicaea, who in harmony decreed that there should be but one hierarch in each city serving Thy faithful as a loving father over his children, one shepherd over a united flock, we also praise Thine all holy name, O Father who is without beginning, O Son who is eternal and O Holy Spirit, the life-creator, illuminate the way and guide us all to once again unite Thy Holy Church. Amen.

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