“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


Saturday, November 30, 2013

Benevolent Funds

The recent letter from the Metropolitan raises more questions than it answers.  If the letter was written on Tuesday, November 26 and addressed to the assigned clergy, the parish council and the members of this community, why was there a six day delay in its release.  Presumably, the assigned clergy had the letter, sat on it until Sunday, December1 before forwarding it to the parish council.  Any complaints regarding this blog receiving the letter before it was released to the parish are reminiscent of a pot and kettle.

An issue remains that, by its being ignored, should be alarming.  No real resolution has ever come from the questionable use of the benevolent funds of the assigned clergy.  According to the National Herald, the proistameno of Prophet Elias only, had his secretary as a co-signatory on his account.  Is this true?  If it is true, according to the February 4, 2013 letter from the Metropolitan, "You could be defrocked from the holy priesthood, if you were known to divulge such confidential information."  Having anyone other than the clergy as a signatory on this account would certainly "divulge such confidential information."  Why would the Metropolitan and Archdiocese look the other way?  Could they be trying to hide the truth? If so, why?

Distributing funds to family members is certainly questionable.  The Metropolitan excuses these expenditures as "seminarians" who, "as well as other college students at all colleges have unexpected needs that require financial assistance."  This might very well be true.  Two points:  no other seminarians were offered financial assistance and, no other seminarians have a family member who has access to this type of account.  The Metropolitan also excuses five other expenses as having to do with "worship services involving visiting clergy and chanting."  Aren't expenses involving visiting clergy and chanting parish expenses that would come from the parish general fund and not a benevolent fund?  Again, why would the Metropolitan and Archdiocese look the other way?  

Why , according to the National Herald, was the secretary's name on the benevolent fund account?  WHY did  Fr. Kouremetis allow this?

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