Reflection on our Diocese

To All My Beloved Fellow Members of St. Paul Parish,

Glory to Jesus Christ!

I want in this letter to convey to you my thoughts and feelings as your parish priest about the situation with our diocesan bishop.  I have already conveyed these ideas to Bishop Matthias and also to some members of the Synod of Bishops.  While I will offer my opinion here about how I understand our situation, my prayer is for all of us to be faithful to the Gospel.

The Synod of Bishops of the Orthodox Church in America after reviewing the report and recommendation of the Response Team appointed to investigate the allegations of sexual misconduct against our Diocesan Hierarch, the Right Reverend Matthias, have accepted the fact that the allegations are substantiated.   The Synod, following the OCA’s Policy, Standards and Procedures, rendered a decision regarding a course of action to take with Bishop Matthias who they found guilty of sexual misconduct.

The reaction of many in the Diocese to our bishop’s behavior has been dismay,  disappointment, and even disgust.   Many have questioned how he could ever again serve as bishop since he has destroyed his moral authority and by his own actions revealed a lack of pastoral wisdom or judgment which one would expect from someone who had been ordained for 40 years.

It is not my intention to air our dirty laundry, but all of these facts are quite public, as they should be, and so publicly – diocesan clergy and lay members together with the Synod of Bishops- we can discuss our situation in order to do the truth (2 Cor 13:8).

 “Every one to whom much is given, of him will much be required; and of him to whom men commit much they will demand the more.”  (Luke 12:48)

We entrusted the pastoral care of our Diocese to Bishop Matthias, and he publicly disgraced himself and in so doing shamed us all.   As is clear in the offending texts and emails he was writing as the Diocesan hierarch not as a private citizen.  As Christ teaches, we rightfully require much and demand the more.   The high standards and expectations for our bishop should be maintained.  Besides there are dire consequences for the unwise words we say.

“I tell you, on the day of judgment men will render account for every careless word they utter; for by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.”  (Matthew 12:36-37)

We pray and hope that our bishop will eventually understand the hurt and harm he has done not only to the woman he victimized but to all of us in the Diocese.   We hope that like the Prodigal Son he will come to his senses and truly repent.  The Synod has assigned him to a therapeutic program in which we hope he will gain the self-awareness to see himself as others see him.   Time will tell whether that will happen.

However, It is not only Bishop Matthias who needs healing.  Our Diocese has been harmed but what has happened and we all need healing – no doubt some of us feel the stress of this situation worse than others.  Bishop Matthias was acting in the role of diocesan bishop as is clear in the offending texts he sent.  As St. Ignatius of Antioch says, where the bishop is, there is the church.  When the bishop engages in misconduct he drags down the diocese as well.   Some of us at least have felt the shame, embarrassment and hurt caused by our hierarch.

We too need the chance to heal but, I believe this will be hard to accomplish if we know our hierarch is going to be restored to our Diocese, back to the very position whose trust and stewardship he betrayed.    The Church from the earliest times in its own canons realizes how serious it is for a hierarch to scandalize the church, and scandalized many of us are.   Our healing will come when we feel safe and know that we won’t be dragged down again by such behavior.

Bishop Matthias at this year’s clergy convocation  spoke to us about the book BEAUTHY FOR ASHES.  He spoke about the important need for there to be  order restored in a diocese which has suffered scandal.  He talked about the importance of re-establishing the dignity and authority of the clergy.   Personally I don’t see how this can happen as long as he is the bishop.   I hope he will live up to what he spoke about and take the necessary steps to restore the dignity and authority of the clergy in our diocese which have been damaged by his own actions.    I want him to get the therapy and healing he needs and also hope he allows our diocese to heal by stepping down as bishop.

“For a bishop, as God’s steward, must be blameless; he must not be arrogant or quick-tempered or a drunkard or violent or greedy for gain,  but hospitable, a lover of goodness, master of himself, upright, holy, and self-controlled…”  (Titus 1:7-8)

The problem facing us is not only what he wrote in the offending messages and emails, but also that he blames the victim for his problems and he publicly denied on the Diocesan webpage that he was guilty of the allegations.  His claim has been shown to be false.  It raises again the issue of how can we trust a man who did not tell the truth.   It is hard to see how we can take seriously what he says.  He asks for our forgiveness but then hopes we will see the purity of his heart.  Repentance does not involve self-justification.

Jesus taught that he who is not faithful in little things, is not trustworthy in big things.   On some level what our bishop did is small, but it raises a big question about trust.

To rephrase Jesus in John 3:12, if we cannot trust him about earthly things, how can we trust him about heavenly things?

We all are to ask God to forgive our bishop, as we are taught by Christ to do.  On the Cross our Lord prayed for his tormentors – “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.”   In the current situation, our Diocese has been hung on the Cross, and we too are praying from that Cross that God will forgive our bishop.  But we as Diocese have been seriously wounded, and are in need of healing.   Christ forgave His tormentors but he didn’t bless them to continue tormenting others.  The healing of our Diocese begins with our bishop getting into therapy and then not only taking a long leave of absence, but resigning from his office to allow the Diocese to heal.

I think it is better for Bishop Matthias and our Diocese that he not be burdened with the pressures and issues which come with being the hierarch.  I hope that our Synod of Bishops will also come to the realization that the trust has been betrayed and broken to a point that it is better not to try to restore it, but rather to let both Diocese and bishop heal from these wounds by allowing us to move into the future on different tracks.

The Synod wishes for Bishop Matthias’ healing, as do we all.  Certainly, he has now the opportunity to repent and to straighten out his life.  In the liturgy we pray constantly to spend the remaining time of our life in repentance.  That I think is the second chance the bishop is to be offered – to get back on the track of repentance, but not to put him into a position whose pressures he didn’t handle well.

Those are my thoughts about where we are and what I hope might happen.

May God be merciful on us all.

I personally have been sickened by the situation we are in.  For all of you who have joined the church, I offer my regrets for the failures in leadership you have witnessed.   Christ says of the Father in John 15:2 :  “Every branch of mine that bears no fruit, he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit.”   We will now see whether we are being pruned to bear more fruit or whether we are being judged as having born no fruit at all.

Fr. Ted

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28 Responses to Reflection on our Diocese

  1. Pingback: Letter of Bishop Matthias to the Midwest Diocese | Fr. Ted's Blog

  2. Pingback: Synodal Letter to the Midwest Diocese | Fr. Ted's Blog

  3. dshortimon says:

    Fr. Ted…thank you for your honest, heartfelt and difficult words. As one of your parishioners I stand beside you in your concern and sickened feeling in all of this. As I have searched my heart over the last few days I can find it possible to forgive Bishop Mathias of his actions, but cannot agree that it would be ever acceptable to restore him to his position. I believe forgiveness does not include ignoring the consequences of the action. Thank you for your love for your flock.

  4. Fr. Ted, my first reaction to this post hearkens back to another one of your recent posts, one dealing with the great pain of sexual abuse. Your words resonate from your heart – in my heart. I also pray for Bp. Matthias’ healing, but not for him to again be the ruling hierarch of the Diocese of the Midwest – or of any diocesan see. How broken our young OCA often is. How often we raise up those who are only full of pride, empty words, and false teachings (thinking of many so-called Orthodox Christian blogs and their “heroes”). ONE is Holy! ONE is the Lord, Jesus Christ! May God comfort and heal you and your flock!

  5. Pingback: Orthodox Collective

  6. Philippa says:

    Me thinks you speak out of both sides of your mouth Fr. You commune homosexuals in your parish. You have not called for the deposing of Abp. Benjamin despite allegations of his frequenting homosexual bars. Where were you during the knowledge of Met. Herman’s homosexual activities and abuse of the monks at St. Tikhon’s?

  7. Mark Pearson says:

    Fr Ted,
    In his letter to the Diocese of the Midwest Bishop Matthias wrote the following “I am deeply sorry that I have offended, confused, and caused hurt to this young woman. I will communicate my apology directly and personally to her.” In my book that sounds like a sincere apology and not ‘blaming the victim’. He writes in the next paragraph, “I wish that I could convince all of you what I am certain of in my heart – that the conscious motives behind my interaction with this woman were not impure.” Personally, I am inclined to take this statement at face value rather than pass judgement on his motives. He then immediately goes on to write ” But, I know that only active,
    demonstrated repentance – confession of my sins, pursuit of the means of changing, and a
    resulting change in conduct – will be convincing.” To me this sounds like sincere repentance. He ends with a convincing pledge “I have pledged to the Holy Synod, and now I pledge to you, the clergy and faithful, that I will undergo the spiritual and emotional counseling and guidance recommended to me by the Holy Synod so that I will never inflict this same offense, confusion, and hurt on anyone else.”
    He finishes his letter with this plea:
    “My mistakes have caused pain, confusion, and deep disappointment to many, many people with
    whose spiritual guidance the Lord has entrusted me, who are reading this message. I ask your
    forgiveness. I beg your prayers. And I pray that our All-Merciful God will guide all of us as we
    struggle together on the difficult path of salvation.”
    I am inclined to forgive Bishop Matthias regardless of his track record. Maybe I have low standards but I think his heartfelt contrition in the face of a humiliating public discourse is commendable.
    Finally, rather than demanding resignation I would hope that we would start afresh with a restored Bishop Matthias, and begin again to build the Church in a spirit of sobornost to the glory of God.

    St Moses the Black (Aug 28th) is a particular favourite saint of mine. His track record was less than exemplary — brigand, bandit, thief, murderer — but he repented and became an abbot in the desert. I think this story involving him is very relevant:

    Once a brother had been caught in a particular sin, and the abbot asked St. Moses (the Ethiopian) to come to the church and render judgment. He came reluctantly, carrying on his back a leaking bag of sand. When he arrived, the brothers asked him why he was carrying such a thing. He simply said, “This sand is my sins which are trailing out behind me, while I go to judge the sins of another.” At that reply, the brothers forgave the offender and returned to focusing on their own salvation rather than the sins of their brother.

    You, bishop Matthias and all of St Paul’s are always in my prayers,
    Mark

    • frmarkhodges says:

      Beloved Mark! Glory to Jesus Christ!

      Brother, I think you are confusing forgiveness with restoration to the episcopacy. Forgiveness is free and unconditional on the part of the forgiver, but that does not mean the one who brought scandal to Christ’s Church should be reinstalled as bishop. With repentance, the penitent is restored to communion, not to holy orders. It is a continuation of the abuse to put the predator back into authority over the spiritual child he preyed upon –or the diocese he scandalized– regardless of forgiveness asked and given.

      Moses the Black was a thief *before* he entered the monastery to repent. And even though he struggled greatly with interior lust, he overcame even that interior sin *before* he became abbot. Had Abbot Moses written or said to anyone what Bishop Matthias wrote and said to that 22 year old convert, Moses would have been rightly removed as abbot, and called to live the remainder of his life in repentance, as anyone who has scandalized the Church should be.

      The story of Saint Moses the Black and his torn water jug (or his ripped sand bag) does not say the man forgiven was reinstalled as bishop. The story illustrates the necessity of forgiveness, not the necessity of the episcopacy. Being a bishop is not necessary for anyone’s salvation. In fact, if he has disqualified himself publicly and caused scandal, remaining a bishop can be to his condemnation.

      This does not at all mean +Matthias is villianized, or that he cannot become a saintly example of repentance to us and generations to come. It is said that Saint Basil the Great once deposed a priest because he committed adultery. After many years of fasting and repentance, this priest was at a funeral. He approached the casket and touched the dead man and the dead man rose. He went to Saint Basil and said to him, “Do you need a greater sign than this of the holiness that I have acquired in order to send me back to my flock?” Saint Basil replied, “Your holiness is between you and God, but I cannot return you to your flock because you scandalized them. It is not right for you to go to them again.”

      We went through this years ago under the Kondratick Embezzlement Scandal. Perhaps a helpful article, delineating the difference between forgiving and reconciliation, is here:

      http://www.ocanews.org/news/HOdges8.22.08_001.html

      I love you, and I hope you’ll forgive my directness and any unnecessary offense.

      Fr Mark Hodges

      +

  8. November 6, 2012

    Matushka Carol Bacha
    Christmas Monastery
    P.O. Box 568112
    Orlando, FL 32856
    407-898-1639
    christmasmonasteryonline@yahoo.com

    V. Rev. Theodore Bobosh and St. Paul Church Community
    St. Paul Orthodox Church
    4451 Wagner Road
    Dayton, OH 45440

    Dear Father Theodore and St. Paul Orthodox Church Community,

    I am very relieved to have now read from Father Theodore’s Blog and message to you regarding the factors why he sees the need in having Bishop Matthias step away from being the Bishop of the Midwest Diocese and giving you the opportunity to be out from under his disgraceful actions and wrong doing and to heal. There is no reason your community should have to suffer under this shame. Worse yet, if Bishop Matthias remains a bishop, he has the opportunity to do what the other bishops in the OCA have been doing over several known generations of time, and that is to ordain and surround themselves with others they bless to do the same morally compromising things they do.

    I would like to encourage you one step further since you have the opportunity of greater voice in the upcoming AAC to be held in your state of Ohio next week.

    1) The imperative for the OCA Synod of Bishops to both recognize the need of removing Bishop Matthias from the Diocese of the Midwest

    2) and the need to engage in the support of all the rules of the Sexual Misconduct Code by which the OCA is to operate.

    Too many of the bishops, by their actions, appear to still think these Rules of Sexual Misconduct are something of an option. That attitude is both dangerous for the salvation of the souls they are elected to guide, and to the legal collapse of the OCA as a church organization. If not total collapse of the OCA, since some sinners seemingly must run somewhere for hiding, the endangerment of guiding the faithful away from the Gospel message and into a sect like mentality is then harmful and degenerating for all who are taken in by this deceptive manipulation, and approval to murder rather than save souls.

    Forgiveness is clearly not having the acceptance of sin forced down your throat.

    Forgiveness is in maintaining a love for the sinner while despising his or her sin.

    I am strongly voicing my prayer for you to take action to oppose the election of any Bishop to Metropolitan who has not been consistent in wanting the Rules of Sexual Misconduct to be enforced.

    One of our visionary developers of Christmas Monastery, Matushka Ellen Gvosdev +2009, gave her whole life to the research and writing up of these rules needed for dealing with Sexual Misconduct (Malfeasance) to keep the Orthodox Church in America out of trouble and in the continuation of being a faith of truth.

    Archbishop Gregory Afonsky (2008+ former Bishop to Alaska in the OCA) before his passing away, gave me one direct obedience as a female monastic to do, engage with the Bishops of the Church to tell them their salvation is lost should they continue in Sexual Misconduct.

    Your Midwest Bishop before his untimely death, Archbishop Job Osacky blessed the work and prayer of Christmas Monastery in a way that would not be stopped or altered by any actions of current bishops or ones who might be elected in the future. Our work of prayer is centered in the Desert Liturgy utilizing the Book of the Hours and the Book of Psalms to organize our worship and prayer life. Vladyka Job saw we were sent monies in our time of need, and these monies multiplied in the measure of their helpfulness. The future plan of Vladyka Job to pray daily with us is still realized by our faithfulness to the spirit of loving truthfulness. Vladyka Job wanted us to aid him in the fight of those bishops and clergy choosing to cover their acts of darkness.

    Our prayers continue for you to take action to safe guard both your parish, your diocese, and the Orthodox Church in America by holding those who attend the All American Council next week in Parma, Ohio to accountability for keeping the Rules of Sexual Misconduct and only giving a cry of ‘Axios’ to a man who will do the same, in the office of Metropolitan. If there is not a man to be found worthy, we pray you keep this office of Metropolitan open rather than filled with a deceptive candidate or Locum Tenens and continue the work of accountability among the faithful gathered making the changes needed so on the God appointed day to come, an honorable and trusting servant will be chosen as Metropolitan who understands the Rules of Sexual Misconduct and applies them.

    Thank you Father Theodore and all of St. Paul Orthodox Community for your discernment and steadfastness in working to rebuild a safer church administration needed for the good of all. Thank you too for your continued generosity and consistent support of Christmas Monastery with your prayers, advocacy, and monetary gifts. May God multiple your love of truth and faithfulness to His Word in the coming week and more.

    Matushka Carol

  9. Bravo, Father Ted!
    Melanie Jula Sakoda
    Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP)
    SNAP Orthodox Director
    melanie.sakoda@gmail.com
    925-708-6175

  10. Thank you, Father Ted! I was a victim of a sexual predator as a child. It is wrong to put a known sexual predator back in a position of authority over anybody. It is insanely wrong to put a sexual predator back in authority over the very people whom he victimized. The Synod’s first responsibility is to the flock, and specifically to the woman whom Bishop Matthias’ behavior harmed. He can repent and be forgiven, and my prayer is that he will be, but he must not remain a bishop.

  11. cindy says:

    I appreciate your dilligence in presenting the case against Bishop Matthias’ unacceptable behavior. I have no animosity toward him, only pity. I pray that he loves his church enough to leave her in more capable hands. I pray that he will pursue a life to which he is more suited and resigns as Bishop without any more harm or controversy. I pray that God will heal all of us who are troubled by this situation.

  12. glorybe1929 says:

    As far as I am concerned ..I worry about all the innocents who have been sexually abused by these so called holy people of religious authority..It is a Crime Against Humanity and should be taken to the International Criminal Court in the Hague, Netherlands…..,And found guilty of the most hienious Crimes against the innocents in their care.

  13. glorybe1929 says:

    This is not complimentary..will you still publish it or?

  14. Bill Lamb says:

    Bishop Matthias in his statement apologized for the pain, confusion, and disappointment he caused, but I didn’t hear any contradicting facts. Granted the pain and disappointment, what is the confusion: the victim’s confusion, our confusion, the bishop’s confusion? Or is the so-called confusion a mask to diminish the significance of the wrong-doing. Such a temporizing statement is a demonstration of a continuing evil intent that does not augur well for the reconciliation process. The bishop’s own recent statement suggests to me that he must resign promptly or be deposed promptly. Thereafter, when the process of counseling or reconciliation has run its course, there will be a place for consideration of what to do next.

  15. Dear Father Ted,

    I could not agree with you more! As a former Naval Officer, I have seen the removal of Commanding Officers for similar offences. Some were excellent officers with many talents; however, their indiscretions fractured their ability to continue leading effectively. Bishop Mathias, by his actions, has erected a curtain between he and his flock. That new curtain has seriously affected his ability to Sheppard the flock of the Mid-West Dioceses. My heart aches for Bishop Mathias, however, it bleeds for those who are abused by those entrusted with the spiritual authority within the Church. As Christ stated about the priesthood in the Temple, “listen to what they say but don’t do as they do.”

    Nevertheless, we in the Orthodox Church must all come to expect and require of our leadership a moral standard that is above the new normal we are seeing and hearing about within the world of today! If we continue keeping our eyes and mouths closed out of the fear of the consequences of speaking up, the Orthodox Church in America will end up like the parable story of buried talents.

    The Church is suppose to be an entrance into reality not an escape from reality.

    In Sadness but still in the Hope and Faith in Christ,

    Harrison J. Krenitsky

  16. glorybe1929 says:

    We are THE CHURCH (THE PEOPLE OF GOD) …Not the hierarchy or any one who sexually abuses the innocent of this world. We do not need this or any other Institution to teach us of GOD. THE HOLY SPIRT TEACHES US. We do not need. priests, nuns or brothers! We are the priests of our. households! We may go any place in this world and we take our GOD with us. THE KINGDOM OF GOD IS WITHIN!

  17. Dear glorybe1929,

    Your comment about the diminished need for the Church because God is within us is not incorrect but instead is incomplete. Because we are created as Trinitarian beings does not diminish the necessity of the Church, but in fact creates a greater need for the Church and its understanding of the Truth in Christ. It is in the Church that the Truth is debated, defined and ultimately proclaimed, for no one individual possesses the total Truth, except for Jesus Christ.

    Understanding the Bible’s message requires more than just ones ability to read and interrupt it by one’s self. Proper understanding of the Bible requires an understanding of the time frame in which the books were written, an understanding of traditions under which the books were written, an understanding of the historical contest in which the books were written and an understanding of the literary context in which the books were written. These four perspectives are critical in ones proper understanding and interpretation of the Bible, and that is the reason for the Church. It is the Church’s responsibility to preserve and teach the Truth through the understanding of these four perspectives. This is particularly critical when it concerns the Old Testament books. Like any investigation, which is required to preserve the evidence, the Church must trace its teaching to its historical past and cannot ignoring the evidence of the past. Ignoring any of those four perspectives will inevitable lead one to an incorrect conclusion.

    As a person who has personally experienced the devastation of sexual abuse, I believe we must speak out and not allow our leadership to use or misuse their positions to satisfy their addictions, whatever they might be. However, the Body of Christ is not made up of only the righteous; it is instead made up of those who are imperfect and are attempting to seek righteousness. Christ did not come to call the righteous to repentance and salvation but instead the unrighteous to which and on which He established His Church. The key word is, “His.” As Father Georges Florovsky states, “We come bearing the Truth but, unfortunately, we come bearing in an earthen vessel.”

    It should not be disappointing that our Churches are fill with the unrighteous, but instead a joy that those unrighteous and imperfect individuals can proclaim and witness in unity to a Truth that is much greater than the individuals themselves. That is the miracle of Salvation that Christ’s Church Offers! Keeping this in mind, we must be eternally vigilant of those among us who would diminish that Truth.

    In understand and Truth,

  18. glorybe1929 says:

    …My dear Harrison…Your treatise is commendable but not at all, in any way,a. summary of what the Bible has taught me through THE HOLY SPIRIT…. (over my many years) ..Any denominational church is. not what God has. in mind for me.(us)
    . I have been blogging for over ten years. re: the sexual abuses that have been going on in this supposed church….that I was a convert to, at the age of 12. I spent over 60 yrs.being the best Rc anyone could be..2001 found me out as fast as I could go..The story is long but thanks to the Holy Spirit, our leaving was confirmed…in so many ways., that we never felt any thing but gratitude for the Freedom Christ. gives to those who love HIM!/….AMEN!

  19. glorybe1929 says:

    Remember that the church (us) does NOT bring Salvation…CHRIST JESUS. DIED ON THE CROSS. AND HIS RISING FROM THE DEAD GAVE US. OUR SALVATION, if we accept it. We are all unrighteous but HE gives us the grace to be forgiven. Also there is a sin that is ” Unforgiveable.” the sin AGAINST THE HOLY SPIRIT..all should be aware of that sin.

  20. glorybe1929 says:

    Intrusivethoughts..oh excuse me I got it backwards..Is this your blogg or Fr.Ted’s. ?

  21. Edward W. Bearse says:

    I am a state trial judge. If I did what Bishop M has been found to have done I could be forgiven, treated, counseled, helped and loved. However, I would never wear a black robe again and that is the way it should be. A few of us should be held to a higher standard. Being forgiven doesn’t mean that we arn’t held accountable! A friend sent me your blog. Thank you for your thoughts!

    • To the Honorable Judge Edward Bearse:

      “Being forgiven doesn’t mean we aren’t held accountable”.

      Thank you Judge Bearse for this observation. I would like to discuss this ‘accountability’ a little more.

      Some years ago and more than 1000 miles away from Ohio, the Sexual Misconduct of Bishop Boris (Geeza) of the then Diocese of the Midwest, Orthodox Church in America had implications for the sufferings I endured then and for many years later. The Bishops of the OCA chose to handle the case of Sexual Misconduct that I was party to in the same way they handled the Sexual Misconduct of Bishop Boris by favoring the abuser and adding harm to the victim(s). Bishop Boris was alleged to have had intimate sexual affairs with more than 30 women while serving the Diocese of the Midwest. To document these allegations, I understand a book was written but not published.

      My case was not only denied by the bishops of harm done, but they interfered with the Civil Courts in attempts to have the sexual assault charges (confirmed finding of sexual abuse of a minor) dropped. Again this “f” word of ‘forgiveness’ was misused to shift the accountability. To get help for both church court and civil issues, Mother Alexandra (Princess Ileana of Romania) and founder of the Monastery of the Transfiguration in Ellwood City, sent me to the Monastery of the Dormition in Rives Junction, Michigan to in December of 1990. Archimandrite Father Roman Braga was to help me because he was an experienced monk priest and a specialist in Church Canon Law. Within an hour of my arrival and with no notice to the women there, Bishop Nathaniel Popp (current Locum Tenens of the OCA), came and stood between Father Roman and me. Popp refused to allow Father Roman to help me. I had documents with me from the court and the Child Protection Agencies, etc. Some years later Father Roman would ask my forgiveness for this episode.

      In my case, Vladyka Job (Osacky) told me, ‘the bishops did not help you because they were afraid you would start another church!’ In this time period of the early 90′s I still overwhelmed with the events of the victimization. The Serbian Orthodox Bishop for Eastern America at the time, Bishop Christopher told me, ‘Carol you should go on a Talk Show!’ At the time, both of these statements by the supporting bishops didn’t bring me what I wanted then of the immediate justice that was interfering with my family relations and children, medical needs, and livelihood.

      Now on the anniversary of my lock out from the church rectory, the events of the Bishops of the OCA favoring the abusers and not attending to victims of Sexual Misconduct for more than 25 years calls my leadership into action and accountability to do what the bishops feared in years past I would do, I should START A CHURCH! That journey has already begun. I am the director of Christmas Monastery. My concerns are aligned with Father Theodore Bobosh of the SMPAC that the current case of the Sexual Misconduct of Bishop Matthias and how the OCA handles it sends a message to victims.

      • Edward W. Bearse says:

        Thank you for your message. During my career I have presided over a number of abuse cases almost all from the work place. I actually do not think the Bishops of the Roman Catholic and our Orthodox Churches truly understand the issue and the terrible damage the abuser causes.

  22. Pingback: Blogs on Sexual Misconduct in the Church | Fr. Ted's Blog

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