The Shepherd, September 2005

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FROM THE FATHERS

“LIVE ALWAYS praising and thanking God. The greatest sin is ingratitude. The worst sinner is the ungrateful person.”

From “An Athonite Gerontikon”

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WITH THE PUBLICATION of the working documents of the MP-ROCA rapprochement committees and the approach of the All-Diaspora Assembly next year, exchanges on the subject have been current between members of the ROCA. Each seems to view ROCA as made in his own image and likeness and draws conclusions from that viewpoint, resulting in oftentimes quite unpleasant differences of opinion. Some seem to see ROCA as a kind of “Bostonite sect.” At the other extreme others view her as always having thought of herself as part of a Mother Church which is identified with the Moscow Patriarchate. It seems appropriate then to publish on the next six pages a definition of the Russian Church Abroad, written at a time when there was no thought of imminent rapprochement in view and so no axes to grind. This is also a work penned by an unimpeachable spokesman for ROCA, one who is glorified as a Saint and Wonderworker and revered by Orthodox Christians far beyond the confines of the Russian Church itself.

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