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Fundamentalism?


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#1 Emiel Claeskens

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 10:17 AM

As for the problem of fundamentalism, we must understand that it is directly linked with the issues discussed during this conference.

Indeed, while the pre-conciliar meetings multiply every year, while we, we are here to try to understand the challenges of the next Council of the Orthodox Church, the fundamentalist camp and anti-Orthodox Ecumenical, which stronger day by day, to mobilize and intensify its fight to "put an end", as he says, "the betrayal of Orthodoxy and its drift ecumenist." The example of the famous "Confession of the Orthodox faith" is very typical in this regard.

What we call fundamentalist groups, it is not only hostile to any idea or attempted rapprochement with other Christians, it is also the ecclesiastical disobedience, interruption canonical links with the bishops and ecclesiastical authorities in place, when, in their opinion, these bishops or authorities "are in heresy and apostasy."

In the present circumstances, it is clear, in our view, no decision Synodal Pan-Orthodox same, whether on the common calendar, fasting, recognition of the baptism of other Christian churches, the so-called diaspora etc., can not be accepted in practice, if it does not get the prior approval of the ultra-Orthodox movements, as these movements continue to exert a kind of spiritual and ecclesial supervision of the Orthodox throughout the world, a sort of universal jurisdiction over local churches. It is time, kairos, for our church leaders and for all of us to end this caricature of fidelity to the tradition, the orthodox ayatollahs who believe themselves responsible for Orthodoxy as a whole and which, while denouncing the Popeof Rome for its claims to primacy and universal jurisdiction, doing exactly what they accuse, but not as individuals but as gerontas college as the magisterium of the most enlightened spiritual fathers!


This is a part of the concluding reflections of pantelis Kalaitzidis at the colloquium held in Paris, st serge, in preparation of the panorthodox Council.

I find it quite strange that he concludes his text in this rather negative way. He gives the impression that "gerontas" by definition are fundamentalists. Now it appears to me that the term "fundamentalist" is more and more used as a way of making someone harmless, as indicating that he is irrelevant. In general, my impression is that gerontas have a high esteem in Orthodoxy. So how do we have to interprete this text? Does the autor represent a rather rational way of thinking which is not really in line withthe Orthodox approach of faith? Or does he point to a real problem: some gerontas who are in fact extremists? I can imagine that there has always been a certain tension between the institutional element in the Church, and the charismatic or pneumatological, but does the author here go too far?

Edited by Olga, 28 November 2012 - 10:30 AM.
corrected formatting, removed tags, etc


#2 Owen Jones

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 02:04 PM

I have just read one of this man's essays online, as a result of the above post. He sounds much like my lecturers at the Episcopal seminary I attended 26 years ago. What he is trying to do is take modernity as a given, that the Church is required to engage with on modernity's terms, whereas it is in fact a mythology. I agree that the Church must do a better job of engaging modernity, but as a sound, theological and philosophical critic of modernity. Kalaizidis attempts to historicize Orthodoxy in a way that is invalid. Yes, there is always an historical and cultural context to theology. However, Kalaizidis seems to place history uppermost, as something that is in and of itself eschatalogical. It isn't. Yet, that is the whole basis of modernity -- that history in and of itself is moving toward its fulfillment. This is nothing but Hegelianism. If this is the dominant opinion among Greek Orthodox ecumenism, then we are indeed in very serious trouble.

#3 Kosta

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 05:20 AM

The fundamentalism he describes is none other than the Orthodox Church. He is the one who is in the minority. The confession of the Orthodox Faith he cites is likely a reference to an anti-ecumenical document signed by numerous monks of Mt Athos and a handful of high profile bishops a few years ago.

#4 Emiel Claeskens

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 12:57 PM

Thanks for both reactions; they confirm what I was thinking already.
I am surprised not to find any recension of this Parisian colloquium on any orthodox website I know.
So the question arises: how important or how representativ was this colloquium? Did it express the attitude of mainline Orthodox believers and theologians?
One of the participants, Mss. Hallensleben, made an eloge of Bulgakov, in a very enthousiast way. But, when I read Bulgakov, I notice that he is not representativ of Orthodox thinking, and I found that his theory of sophiology or sophianism has been condemned as heresy by the Patriarchate of Moscow ànd by Rocor (St John Maximowitz).
One could pose questions about other speakers of this conference also(I have all the texts!)
So what was the value of this gathering, and why did St Serge select these speakers?

#5 Herman Blaydoe

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 03:34 PM

There is a small group of "professional" ecumenists. They know each other, they get together for nice little dinners and give happy little speeches to each other, but honestly, nobody really pays them much attention outside their little circles.

#6 Owen Jones

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 12:37 PM

Then why does my Bishop hold joint vespers with the Romans on a regular basis?

#7 Rick H.

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 06:06 PM

Possibly for some of the same reasons my former EO priest flew with an EO bishop to Rome to meet the Pope in his office at the Vatican several years ago.

It has not been my experience that this can all be characterized as (or limited to) little dinners, little speeches, and little circles.

#8 Kosta

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 07:30 PM

Plenty of bishops from Met. Philaret of ROCOR to Archbishop Christodolous of Athens, to Met Hierotheos have condemned the kind of ecumenism that Owen speaks of as heresy. Archbishop Damianos abbot of ST Katherine's Monastery on MT Sinai made clear that there could be No joint prayer service with the pope of Rome when Pope John Paul made a pilgrimage to the monastery, saying "it is impossible".

#9 Jean-Serge

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 08:41 PM

Hello Emiel,

Could you tell me where did you get the quotation from Pantelis Kalaitzidis at the colloquium held in Paris, at Saint Serge, in preparation of the panorthodox Council. The acts of this colloquium are still to be published. Do you have the whole text?

#10 Emiel Claeskens

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 09:26 AM

Hello Emiel,

Could you tell me where did you get the quotation from Pantelis Kalaitzidis at the colloquium held in Paris, at Saint Serge, in preparation of the panorthodox Council. The acts of this colloquium are still to be published. Do you have the whole text?

Yes I can! I follow a course of "Theology of the Orthodox Churches" at the catholic University of Louvain. We have all the texts of the colloquium in our Course Documents (and we have to study them).
I do not know if i am -technically- able to pass them to you, and if this is allowed. Maybe i could send you acopy of all the links, if you want?

#11 Jean-Serge

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 11:46 AM

Thank you Emiel, I would be indeed very interested to have the links of these texts or these texts. I am particularly interested in the speech or essay by the Georgian theologian, but by the others too. I am quite suprised that you have already the texts in Belgium while in France they are still unavailable. Thank you in advance. You can write me by personal message if you wish.




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