“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


Friday, December 7, 2012

Just WHO Is Not Keeping His Word?!

"I was waiting until this month of November to make a final decision regarding the ratification of the parish council candidate, Mr. Yannis Armaou, to the Parish Council, on the basis that final payment to the attorney who handled the recent law suit against the previous parish council would be paid."

On August 2, 2012, the Metropolitan writes in part, "Therefore, I must know if the attorneys involved in this matter will have been fully paid.  Thereafter, I will gladly ratify the name of Mr. Armaou." (emphasis added)  On September 4, 2012, the Metropolitan, apparently forgetting what he previously wrote offered the following, "Until all problematic financial matters related to this have been resolved, Mr. Armaou's status will remain pending." The financial matters referenced by the Metropolitan were the same on August 2, 2012 as they were on September 4, 2012 yet he mentions no condition on finances.  If, as he writes in his most recent letter, he was waiting until November to make a final decision, what are we to make of the August 2, 2012 letter?  You gave your word, Your Eminence, in that August letter and now you have gone back on it.

"Unfortunately, however, the recent letter sent to His All Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew and to His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios and attributed to Mr. Armaou regarding Father Michael Kouremetis forces me to not ratify his election.  The reason for this is because the contents of the letter go against the Uniform Parish Regulations, Article 30, Section 4."

Section 4 of the Uniform Parish Regulations states, "If a problem should arise between a Priest and the Parish Council, the matter shall not be brought before the Parish Assembly. The Priest or the Parish Council shall have the right to refer the matter to the respective Hierarch"  How exactly does this apply to a letter written to the Patriarch or the ArchbishopMr. Armaou's letter was not brought before a parish assembly.  Certainly Your Eminence isn't arguing that Mr. Armaou was a member of the parish council since, in spite of his election by this community, you have refused to ratify him.  You gave your word in that August letter and now have gone back on it.  

"If much of the stewardship monies of the Salt Lake community did not go to one of the four independent accounts, which are not under the custodianship of any current parish council, as has been happening in the community, the parish would easily have more than enough funds to submit its 2011 obligations, as well as its 2012 obligations to the Archdiocese."

How much is "much" and from where does His Eminence derive his facts?  A quick review of recent history reveals it was under his "appointed" parish councils that this community ignored its obligations to the Archdiocese.  It is certainly worth noting that the current parish council, since being elected and taking office has remitted nearly $135,000 toward this community's Archdiocesan obligation.  An accomplishment the "appointed" parish councils failed to meet throughout their entire tenure.  Further, His Eminence's independent accounts argument is nothing more than a red herring - those monies and entities have been designated as separate by General Assemblies, and the Parish Council President has oversight of them as one of the signatories.

"At the time when you, the current parish council assumed your responsibilities, I was assured that you would work together to bring peace and unity among the people.   Are the recent newspaper articles about the community part of this process?  When do you plan to start being faithful to your word?"

Since taking office, this current parish council has worked diligently for the betterment of the ENTIRE community.  The referenced newspaper articles are a result of the poor clerical leadership that has plagued this community for over TEN years, and the insistence on making a miracle out of an accidental spilling of oil on glass covering an icon, despite the evidence to the contrary. 

Responding to His Eminence's final question:  When do you plan to start being faithful to your word, Your Eminence?

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