“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


Thursday, July 8, 2010

WATCH THIS SPACE: The Ongoing Cost of Lost Opportunities

Our grandparents did GREAT things for our Church and Community from 1905 onward, and managed to create a THRIVING community even during the GREAT DEPRESSION. What can our current leadership claim as accomplishments?

Each day, from here forward, we will list an "action item" that COULD have been possible, had we not had the backward-thinking few, including backward-thinking clergy, engaged in OBSTRUCTING the efforts of many VISIONARIES in our community.

It is indeed TRAGIC to consider what, in this past decade, we might have accomplished:

  1. Upgrades to provide safe, well-appointed Sunday School facilities at Holy Trinity
  2. Repairs to mitigate water problems in basement Sunday School rooms at Prophet Elias
  3. The Anthony G. Skedros Memorial Gymnasium
  4. New rooms to facilitate the teaching of the Greek language
  5. Repair and renovation of the Prophet Elias dome
  6. A Hellenic Cultural Museum honoring our great-grandparents, grandparents, parents and OURSELVES (for heaven's sake!) along with providing our children and grandchildren with an ongoing reminder of their wonderful heritage!
  7. An opportunity to purchase a valuable piece of downtown property which has since DOUBLED in value.
Many of these, along with others, might have been possible, might have been in the works. We might today be well on our way to having two updated, beautiful church campuses that would be a springboard to further the work of Christ in this valley, this region, this country.

Metropolitan Isaiah in 2005 said, "... every Greek Orthodox parish is owned by the general membership. This means that in the matter of revenues and property, the general membership makes all the decisions." In 2006 the general members His Eminence referred to VOTED by a 72% margin to go forward as a community with the Hellenic Community Foundation. The MINORITY prevailed upon the Metropolitan to stall this effort despite his own words and despite that vote. In 2009 the "go-ahead" was finally given. And now these same people seek once again to strangle this effort and to stagnate this community. We must not let that happen.

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