Voices from Russia

Saturday, 14 December 2013

14 December 2013. A Caveat Lector on the Monomuckos Gang



This passed between a dedicated Cabineteer and me:


They claim that Whiteford’s an AUTHORITY. What a joke… he has NO Orthodox seminary time; ergo, he’s no expert of any sort. At least, Fitzgerald and Schmemann had real credentials (Tikhon Fitz WAS at SVS for a year), as do Lebedeff and Oleksa (despite all their wrong opinions). Whiteford, Puhalo, Gillquist (or any of his crowd), Rose, and any HOOMie you could name had NONE (correspondence courses or informal training don’t equal real seminary formation). None of them had a real seminary formation. That’s not minor. None of these jerks had a degree equal to a kandidatura from the MDA. Is it worth my while to reply to this shit? I’m asking you… do you see a need to do so? I frankly find the topic off-putting. The religious hobbyists and all their vapourings are irrelevant. Besides, they’re their own worst enemies. Have a good one, and do pass the jug. The world hasn’t gotten less crank in the last 24, has it?


No, I wouldn’t waste time to reply to this crap. They ARE their own worst enemies. I sent it only because it added to a small point of history.


True to my friend’s advice, I’m not going to reply to the noisome rot posted on Monomuckos (it IS a waste of one’s limited God-given time); however, it’s good to say a word or two about some of the konvertsy “experts” floating around out there. John Whiteford doesn’t have Orthodox seminary formation… that, in itself, renders most of his opinions worthless. It speaks even more of the ignorance of those who put him up on a pedestal. He doesn’t even have Orthodox seminary under his belt, let alone an advanced theological academy degree. He doesn’t deserve mention in the same breath with Mark Golovkov, Vsevolod Chaplin, or Andrei Kuraev… like them or not, they all have kandidaturas. None of the konvertsy loudmouths has an Orthodox kandidatura (or its equivalent… and heterodox degrees don’t count), and most of them lack a real Old School Orthodox seminary formation. It’s GIGO on a major scale, kids. Yet, don’t try to break up the party in the sandbox… they won’t listen to you and they won’t modify ANY of their beliefs or behaviours (after, all they’re RIGHT, dontcha know).

They all seem to hate Lazar Puhalo. He IS a character (I met him), but he’s no ogre. My take is that he’s a dotty monastic with a “past”… the OCA should have taken him as an archimandrite and let him live out his life in peace. He’s no danger to anyone, let alone the Church at large. He isn’t really a bishop, in the best sense of the term, but some of his critics aren’t really priests, in the best sense of the term (most of his most vociferous detractors are shake n’ bake konvertsy clergy with no real seminary formation). It evens out. Again, my take is that he’s a harmless monastic living out in the sticks in BC, that’s all. He has no movement; he’s not trying to push rank heresy in the Church (he’s no Bulgakov, Berdyaev, Schmemann, Grabbe, or Florensky). Mostly, he simply holds different opinions on undefined theologumenae than the Monomuckos toddlers do, and they don’t like him for that. I think that we should leave him in peace unless he tries to pass off something as serious as Bulgakov or Florensky did, and he hasn’t yet (probably, he wouldn’t, for he wants a peaceful life as much as any one of us do).

Love BT is bloviating again. I shan’t reply to that, but I shall say that one of the most difficult things to learn in life is that our “take” on a given situation may very well be very wrong. People whom we thought were friends, were really enemies, and vice versa. Take his story on why he’s no longer Ruling Bishop of the OCA Diocese of the Western USA with a block of salt. Tikhon Fitz is one of the most controversial bishops that the OCA ever had, and he had more than his share of enemies (including on the Holy Synod). Obviously, he sees himself as an “innocent victim”… do keep your distance from such sorts, they tend to blow at the most surprising moments. As I say, more than one wanted his head… and he had a loud claque of supporters, too. I’d advise all concerned to avoid this particular cow pat… unless you must, and you needn’t, for he’s no longer a ruling bishop. Let him be and let him rant… of course, the toddlers will applaud him. Mark down who does so, and oppose them. Don’t waste your time in futile argument.

It’s not boring in Orthodoxy in the American diaspora, is it? Pass the jug, it hasn’t changed in the last 24, and it bids fair not to change in the immediate future (there’s hope in the longer term, but we’re stuck with the existing apparat now). In short, the Church is being its irascible self…



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