From The Crunchy Con:
Last night at Pan-Orthodox Vespers here at St. Seraphim Cathedral here in Dallas, Metropolitan Jonah of the OCA responded. Watch his sermon here. It’s a bombshell that will rock the Orthodox world. Concluding line: “We might affirm to our bishops that they might tell the churches of the Old World: ‘There is an American Orthodox Church. Leave it alone.'”
While I can appreciate that to some, especially those in Constantinople, might find His Beatitude’s words harsh at time, I think he is correct in his assessment of the situation of the Church here in the States.
His Beatitude says in his sermon:
“It is imperative, brothers and sisters, imperative on us, that we come together, and with one voice, as the Orthodox Church in North America, to say to the holy fathers of the Old World: the Orthodox Church exists in North America. We’re grateful for the support that you have given us. We love and support your work, and we rejoice in your victories, and we’re sad with your tragedies. But you have to give us the freedom to take care of our own church in our own country in our own culture, and not to be controlled by people who have never heard a word of English, much less would allow a word of English to be spoken in the liturgy. We can’t allow our church to be controlled by people who have no appreciation for our culture, and who have to bow to the Turkish Islamic authorities.”
His Beatitude concludes by addressing the faithful, the clergy and the bishops in America and asking them totell the churches in the Old World: “There is an American Orthodox church. Leave it alone.”
As Rod Dreher concludes his own post on the matter: “Boom! It’s on. Hold on to your mitres.”
I am unimaginably proud of His Beatitude and thank God for his words last evening.
It is worth your time to give a listen.
p.s., The text of His Beatitude’s sermon can be found here (NB: it is a pdf).