“Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them,

and they that are great exercise authority upon them.

But it shall not be so among you:

but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister;

And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant:

Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto,

but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.” (Matthew 20:25-28, KJV)

The word the Athenians used for their Assembly was Ekklesia, the same word used in the New Testament for Church
(and it is the greatest philological irony in all of Western history that this word,
which connoted equal participation in all deliberation by all members,
came to designate a kind of self-perpetuating, self-protective Spartan gerousia -
which would have seemed patent nonsense to Greek-speaking Christians of New Testament times,
who believed themselves to be equal members of their Assembly.)

- Thomas Cahill, Sailing the Wine-Dark Sea: Why the Greeks Matter


Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Character Assassination by Innuendo

It has been appalling to witness the character assassination of Nick Bapis by innuendo.

The Good Friday letter, having first and foremost the signatures of the clergy, is truly an un-Christian act. The content and the mailing timing choice is beyond comprehension. This travesty portends worse things to come.

How can the Clergy have so little respect for the character and the feelings of a person like Nick Bapis ??

Nick Bapis, throughout his entire life, has faithfully and selflessly served the Greek Orthodox Faith, and particularly our Salt Lake Greek Orthodox Community! One cannot count the ways that the Bapis family has contributed to our community. Nick has advanced the well-being of our community; he has advanced our faith; and, he has made extraordinary contributions to our ethnic heritage.

The Bapis family's contributions are immense and immeasurable. Nobody should assail the family's name in such a hateful and shameful way. The signatory [to the letter] priests should not be so blinded as to think themselves as αναμάρτητοι (sinless) so that they can “be the first to cast the stone!” Our Lord was clear on this message.

Answers for such actions are indeed found in the Bible. Part of one of the Holy Week’s passages is instructive in this instance. "Ουαί, ουαί Γραμματείς και Φαρισαίοι υποκριταί." (“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites!). The Clergy should have been the first ones to seek out Nick Bapis, to ask to be fully informed, and to discuss with him the issue that disturbed them. There is no need to create this new turmoil. The priests should have attempted to find a solution first, before precipitating this latest in a series of conflicts. Is it inappropriate to wonder, "Tι ψυχή θα παραδόσουν ?" (What soul or spirit will they offer to their Maker?)

Our Greek Orthodox Community does not need clergymen who support and condone hate; we do not need priests who sow dissension; we need priests who exemplify the ministry of our Lord - a ministry of LOVE - the one thing they have yet to try to do.

The Metropolitan's recent visit, and his words to us, gave us hope to believe that during Easter we were expecting messages of love, of forgiveness, of new beginnings. Instead we were given Judas' kiss of betrayal.

Let us one and all support the Bapis family during their Golgotha as perpetrated by our priests. The Bapis family deserves everyone’s support.

- Nick J. Colessides


John said...

I support Nick Bapis.
-- John Saltas

Steve Gamvroulas said...

I also support Nick Bapis and the others who have been shamelessly attacked by our "esteemed" parish council.

I also call upon the unelected, appointed parish council members to resign immediately. We as a community need a parish council that can be trusted to put the good of our community above their own and the clergies self interests.

Xpistos Anesti!!