Saturday, 6 February 2010

Juxtaposition: Orthodoxy and the Two Anglicanisms

Here's an interesting juxtaposition:

The primate of the Orthodox Church in America, a multi-ethnic, Americanised but originally Russian church body with its roots in Uniatism, was, in June of last year, to be found in Texas announcing the end of ecumenical dialogue with the local American representatives of the worldwide Anglican communion, The Episcopal Church, and courting Anglican traditionalists who have - for valid reasons, let it be acknowledged - separated from this communion in order to pursue their own vision of Anglicanism (the Orthodox generally, in my experience, proselytise shamelessly among other Christians in the name of "mission").

Here's a pic of the Metropolitan chatting with the soon-to-be consecrated Bishop of the Anglican traditionalists, Robert Duncan:
Then, on January 30th this year, Metropolitan Jonah was in New York at St Vladimir's Seminary in his role as president of said august institution (a seminary, let it be known, of the Orthodox Church in America, of which he is primate), presiding over the award of an honorary doctorate to none other than the Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, head of the world-wide Anglican communion whose local representatives Jonah "dissed" in Texas. Williams (whose doctorate was a study of Russian theologian Vladimir Lossky) was invited to address the seminary on aspects of Orthdodox theology in the annual Schmemann Memorial Lecture, held to honour the memory of theologian Alexander Schmemann, who has on occasion been quoted in the pages of this blog.

Here's a pic of Jonah with Rowan:
As the Americans say, "Go figure!"

Some would say Jonah was being diplomatic, others might say he was being equivocal.

Whatever the case may be, I suspect there are more than a few ex-Anglican (not to mention ex- Lutheran) Orthodox converts expressing their consternation at this turn of events.

2 comments:

Mathias said...

It is interesting thatyou say that Orthodoxy proselytizes amongst other Christian denominations. I think that what was once national chauvinusm cloaked in Orthodoxy eg Holy Russian Nation ,has now in the era of globalism become a denominational chauvinism,perhaps taking over from the traditional RCC vs protestant one. The latter have learnt to work together -? Vatican II being the reason. if you read any of the orthodoxy websites they are always condemning Proddies and Catholics, for 'lapses" on doctrine. BUT let us not forget that it was the ROC which did not stop the progroms of the jews in the PALE OF SETTLEMENT.
I can see why Soloviev founded a Russian orthodox church in comunion with Rome perhaps because he recognised that the Universal church incuded all of the Christian denominations and to overcome theological insularity

acroamaticus said...

Matthias,

I agree totally with your comments regarding Orthodoxy and national chauvinism.

In regard to Soloviev, it is telling that the Orthodox Church has hereticised his distinctive ideas whilst Rome, at least in the person of Hans Urs von Balthasar, has welcomed them. Whether Soloviev ever converted to RCism or not (I understand scholars disagree on this), his ideas on unity would seem to play into Roman dreams of converting Russia - Fatima visions and all that!