Unbeknownst to most Orthodox, Met. Jonah was the voice of Orthodoxy in the other Christian communions. His words reached into Baptist meetings, Episcopal assemblies, even the Vatican. He traveled these halls effortlessly because he held to the simple teaching of the Gospel but in the fullness of the Orthodox moral tradition. That enabled him to be heard by our non-Orthodox brethren and strengthen them at the same time for he was able to impart a depth and wisdom that many were looking for but had yet to discover. Met. Jonah's successes, as well as the genuine fondness and respect shown him by Christians of other communions, shows us that Orthodoxy can speak to the larger culture and that it has some very important things to say. It also shows, as his forced retirement this week makes clear, that the afflictions borne by other other communions afflict us as well. From the article: There is another element in this which is of immediate importance, and directly follows on … [Read more...]
Catholic Online: Metropolitan Jonah of the Orthodox Church in America Suddenly Resigns His Office: Why?
That's the title of my latest essay on Catholic Online. (Click here for the nice lead in they gave me, and here for the article). Full text below. By Fr. Johannes L. Jacobse NAPLES, FL. (Catholic Online) - In a recent Catholic Online article (Social Justice: Take Back the Term from the Thieves and Build a New Catholic Action) Deacon Keith Fournier writes about a question he was asked at a recent conference: ...the host of the conference made a suggestion that we get rid of the term "Social Justice" because it is now used by 'the left". He asked for my thoughts. I strongly disagreed. I insisted that we take back the phrase from those who have stolen it, either on the "the right" or "the left". He then suggested the Church does not use the phrase "Social Justice". An attendee did a "google" search of the Vatican documents on his handheld device and reported it was used thousands of times in the magisterial teaching of the Church. Fournier is right on two … [Read more...]
This is my essay that appeared on Catholic Online today. Don't Let Muslims Define 9-11 NAPLES (Catholic Online) - Muslims have it over secularists, but not Christians - at least the clear thinking ones anyway. The Muslim proposal to build a mosque two blocks from Ground Zero is not only an affront to all people who died there, but another chapter in a cultural jihad that seeks to replace the cultural traditions of Christendom with Sharia, the code of law derived from the Koran and from the teachings and example of Mohammed. First the caveats. Yes, most Muslims are not jihadists; they may see the non-Muslim as an infidel but won't resort to violence to defeat him. Yes, Muslim believers pose no threat to American cultural norms and legal structures as long as their numbers remain small. Yes, every Muslim citizen should be afforded the rights due to all Americans regardless of their religion. The $100 million mosque however, represents more than religious freedom. Named … [Read more...]
The Catholic take on +Bartholomew's Sunday of Orthodoxy encyclical. Caveat: I am a columnist for Catholic Online. ISTANBUL, Turkey, (CNA Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople´s newest encyclical encourages dialogue between the Orthodox Church and other Christian churches and laments those who are "unacceptably fanatical" in challenging such dialogue. He specifically condemned the false rumors spread about Catholic-Orthodox dialogue. Patriarch Bartholomew´s patriarchal and synodal encyclical was dated Feb. 21, Orthodoxy Sunday, when the Orthodox Church celebrates the defeat of the iconoclastic heresy. His letter began by noting the failure of those who tried to suppress, silence or falsify the Orthodox Church. He said that the Ecumenical Patriarchate cares about "protecting and establishing" the unity of the Orthodox Church in order that the Orthodox Christian faith may be confessed "with one voice and in one heart." Orthodoxy, he said, must be promoted with humility … [Read more...]