Sunday, April 23, 2017

In case you haven't read a good old fashioned anti-Orthodox screed lately... (updated)

One of the biggest complaints against Pulpit & Pen we get consistently is that we somehow don’t “have all our facts,” or are “misrepresenting” someone or something. I received countless emails claiming that I “misrepresented” Greek Orthodoxy in my recent posts regarding Hank Hanegraaff and that I should do more research. Well, what better way to research than to go straight to the source in person? Saturday, April 15, known as Holy Saturday in the Orthodox tradition, I along with a couple of friends went to visit St. Nektarios Greek Orthodox Church in Charlotte, NC–the church that Hanegraaff was recently chrismated in. The service began at 11:30 pm, and was still going strong showing no signs of slowing down when we decided to leave at around 2:00 am. While we hoped to have the opportunity to confront Hanegraaff in person, being that we all had to get up early the next morning to worship the living God on Easter morning, we decided to call it a night early. However, there are quite a few things that we can take away from this experience in this church.
1.) I have sat through many Catholic masses. I was married in a Catholic church, and I can definitely say I’ve “been there done that.” But I’ve never sat through anything so long and tedious as the Greek Orthodox mass. Perhaps being a special Saturday night “resurrection service,” this wasn’t the norm, but it was excruciatingly long. 2 1/2 hours in and no sign of slowing down.
2.) The cliche, “bells and smells” is actually a true reality. The burning of incense and ringing of bells was a noxious combination. It reminded me of being in a college dorm smoking weed and blowing the smoke through toilet paper rolls stuffed with dryer sheets.
3.) The liturgy was vain and repetitious. Literally, the same ritualistic prayers and chanting were sung over and over. Every prayer included an invocation of Mary and the Saints.
4.) While there was actually quite a bit of Scripture reading, there was absolutely no teaching. In fact, the vast majority of Scripture reading was sung in the eerie Byzantine chant. You’d really have to pay attention and try to listen really hard to even understand what they were reading or reciting.

Read the rest here if you must.

It's been a really long time since I have read such ignorant tripe. I don't know what denomination this man affiliates with but if their idea of "Christian behavior" is going to another church for their Easter service for the purpose of trashing it and "confronting" one of its new members, you may color me unimpressed. 

Update: And now there is this "apology" from JD Hall.  Be sure to put down your coffee before reading this.

HT: Bill Tighe


Gregory Manning said...

Saw this the other day. Guy threw in just about every insult but "yo momma".

Well, sometimes the most bitter critics make the best converts.

CatholicFP said...

Do you know any priests who can give a soul safe passage to Purgatory?

Fr. Frank said...

The author is a Wahhabi Baptist.

August said...

Doesn't look like a very sane site. Why not just go down to the local gas station and get heckled by some locals instead?

Anonymous said...

I regularly attend Byzantine Ruthenian Divine Liturgy and other servvices and contrary to the points noted in the posting, I often find myself wishing liturgy would not end but, continue. This type of worship is the ultimate glorification and supplication. To me, you have to regularly attend to even begin to scratch the surface of what is being offered. Only then do you really start to appreciate how we constantly ask for the Lord's mercy, acknowledge our sinfullness, hoping my prayer will rise up like incense etc. All the while, one is praying with mind, body (crossing, bowing) and word before having your soul nourished. Such a complete and total lack of understanding, respect for another's tradition and then to want to confront someone who was participating in divine worship is truly mind bogeling. Prayers that this person has a change of heart.

123 said...

Perhaps he would like to investigate a few of the works referred to in this post:

Anonymous said...

Meh We have a lot of crazies in our Church as well. While our crazies are blessed enough to be in Christ's Church, one can certainly see the parallels between ours and theirs.

Lawrence Hall, HSG said...

What an unhappy man. Recycling Jack Chick-isms is not an argument.