An excellent and eloquent article, The Orthodox Church of Tomorrow, has been floating around the net for the last three weeks, but was recently removed from the original posting site by something we Americans don’t take too kindly to – infringement of our right to free speech. Fr. John A. Peck of Prescott Orthodox Mission in Prescott, Arizona, posted the most honest, in-your-face article I’ve ever seen on the subject of the future of Orthodoxy in America and what needs to be done to survive and thrive. I should rather say Fr. John “was” a pastor of Prescott Orthodox Mission, because since the article came out he has been removed from his post and the article was taken down by him out of obedience to his superiors. An infringement on his right to free speech by any other name.
I would never suggest any one, laity or ordained clergy, do anything that is contradictory to church teachings or the authority of the hierarchy. But after reading this article several times, I can honestly say there isn’t anything that questions either. Should we stop speaking the truth in love because it might destroy entrenched positions?
I’m not on the inside of anything, but it certainly appears that the same straight talk and practical ideas that spread Fr. Peck’s article like wildfire throughout Orthodox circles is the same reason it’s too hot for the powers that be within the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America. The removal of Fr. Peck and the purge of his article cannot change the power of the Internet. The written word cannot be suppressed. Pray for our hierarchs that they can overcome their sensitive feelings and entrenched provincialism to see the truth and the great promise in Fr. John’s article.