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Archive for the ‘Discussion questions’ Category

I Will Not Speak of Thy Mysteries

with 3 comments

“For I will not speak of thy Mysteries to thine enemies…”
–From the Communion hymn for the liturgy for Holy Thursday,
and one of the prayers before communion

Christ is risen! Indeed he is risen!

This past Holy Week has given me many points to consider in a topic I’ve been ruminating on for some time: the issue of photos and videos of Orthodox sacramental rites being placed on the internet in an unrestricted fashion. I am encouraged by the growing use of media technology by Orthodox parishes for the sake of proclaiming the Gospel of Christ. Technological advances in the past decade have made this possible, with good-quality digital still and video cameras available at bargain prices. For those eager to share the Orthodox Faith (which should be all of us), this has been turned into a real opportunity to make Orthodox worship more visible to all.

However, I admit to some unease with the way this is being done in practice. I have benefited greatly from the ready availability of photos and videos (particularly on YouTube, to help a young choir learn new settings by hearing others sing them), but I am not sure this justifies the unrestricted disclosure of “family affairs” to the world. Consider some photos easily found online (all open in a new window/tab), available for anyone to view:

Of Holy Communion
Of Baptisms
Of Ordinations

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Fr Basil Biberdorf

April 25th, 2011 at 12:17 am

What to do about a bad priest?

with 4 comments

Since secular work, house blessings, and kids’ school projects have conspired to slow down the next segment of the Making of a Priest, I thought it might be worthwhile to point out that St. Theophan the Recluse (1815-1894) addressed the question of “What to do about a bad priest?” well over a century ago. (Many thanks to Fr. Justin Frederick for translating the original.)

Read it: What to do about a bad priest?

As you work your way through it, consider St. Theophan’s counsel in light of many reactions today to poor leadership. Readers are invited to weigh in in the comments.

Written by Fr Basil Biberdorf

January 26th, 2010 at 10:20 am

Discussion Question: Parish Council Eligibility

with 10 comments

Today’s essay question:

To what degree should members of a parish council be subject to the requirements enumerated for bishops (priests) and deacons in 1 Timothy 3:1-13? Support your answer. (Because I don’t want to wade into the matter of women serving on parish councils, make appropriate adjustments for that in reading the epistle.)

1/21 Update: I can tell many of you are giving this diligent reflection, which explains the, ahhh, light response so far.  Some points to ponder: Is it ever in the interest of the Church (locally and universally) to have councilmen who drink too much, or are prone to violence? What about quarrelsomeness and intemperance? Marital history?

Written by Fr Basil Biberdorf

January 20th, 2010 at 10:29 am

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