...offered by Dn. James Ferrenberg, a sinner at 10:09 AM [+]
Throughout the OCA, Clergy and Choirs are no doubt wrestling with the changes. We should have had a blog contest to see which choir screwed up the liturgical commemoration worse...not to mention the poor priests and deacons trying to get used to it. Officially it is listed as: "His Eminence, DMITRI, Archbishop of Dallas and the South, Locum tenens of the Metropolitan See..." What precisely is to follow that, I suppose was either obvious to some, or a complete mystery. We finished it with: "...of the Orthodox Church of America." Putting this to music and actually singing it was rather interesting.
But of course, the liturgical struggles are nothing compared to the reality of the situation in which we recognize the human failings of some in authority in the Church. It really should not surprise us, but such knowledge of church history doesn't take away the hurt that people can feel in such situations. It should be our prayer that people not allow this to cause them to stumble - as indeed it should not.
No one likes see their dirty laundry aired out, but alas this was a necessary and ENCOURAGING step toward healing for this jurisdiction. It is to some degree a tribute to the OCA that the laundry was ever aired to begin with and that (to be more specific) the investigative council led by Bishop BENJAMIN was so thorough...PAINFULLY and rightfully thorough. An abscess cannot be heal;ed until it is lanced and cleaned. To some degree this is a sort of cleansing of the temple and we have now set before us and (again to be more specific) our remaining hierarchs the task of moving forward. It is my hope that at least as much prayer is happening as there has been complaining, gossip, and babbling.
I choose not to dwell on the many negatives that led up to these events, but rather to focus on seeing the resolution of the affair as a very positive thing. Better that we should not have discovered and rooted out this problem? No, never. We are all humans and we will all have our failings...but to recognize them, fix them, and carry on again is, in my opinion, a worthy measure of a person's character. It is also for the character of a community.