Friday, October 12, 2018

Jad Ganem: The Howling Abyss

Arabic original here.

The Howling Abyss

by Jad Ganem

It's one thing to read about schisms in the Church in history-books. Watching the brisk steps being taken toward it in your own time is something else entirely. For years, stubbornness has been in control of the situation. Voices of caution are raised, but no one wants to listen. Theology is transformed into points of view or, you could say, into arguments justifying the slow crawl towards the abyss of schism. We have witnessed a solid engineering to create an Orthodox papal ideology and sabotage true conciliarity. We have experienced the disavowal and destruction of all the rules that guided common Orthodox relationships. We have seen with our own eyes those who deny what they themselves have said, what they themselves have written, what they themselves have taught. We have dealt with those who assign no value to others' opinions. We have witnessed those who have no concern for building consensus, who have no scruple about fanning the flames of discord, who persist in saying one thing and its opposite according to their whims and interests.

Many gave warnings. Many wrote. Many objected. Many boycotted. But the plan continues. How can you have dialogue with those who only want to hear their own voice? How can you speak according to a churchly logic with those who act like they're an secular NGO? How can you convince those who see the Church as a collection of frozen canons that she is a living body that is not frozen in past times and forms. How can you convince those who have lost their glory that smashing the glories of others will not bring back what they have lost? We fear that those who have engineered the slide toward schism and those who crawl toward the abyss are not concerned about either Christ or His Church so much as they are concerned about their authority and glory. Has the time not yet come to stop rousing small conflicts, enlarging them and deepening the rift between peoples? Who will put out the flames and who will lessen the enmity if the Church has abandoned her role? Are we now in need of someone who will cleanse the temple of money-changers? Come, Lord Jesus!

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