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Fr. Thomas Hopko in Lexington, Again

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Written by Basil on 04/2/2005 1:15 AM. Filed under:

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Thanks to Clifton Healy for pointing this out on Blogodoxy: Asbury Seminary is hosting a seminar on worship in the emerging culture. Protopresbyter Thomas Hopko will be speaking on Eastern Orthodox worship.

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3 Responses to “Fr. Thomas Hopko in Lexington, Again”

  1. Erich Says:

    Cool. I wish I were still down there to sit in.

  2. Basil Says:

    Erich, me too.

  3. joe Says:

    Hopefully, the Very Reverend Father Thomas Hopko will give it to them straight like he did to the Canadian evangelical Protestants: What would your response be to evangelicals who start using candles and incense and chants and possibly even icons — all the accoutrements — but without actually becoming Orthodox?

    TH: It’s interesting you should ask that, because the Evangelical Orthodox [under Fr. Gillquist] were doing that before they joined up, and I was there when they were doing it, and if you went, the ethos and atmosphere was very Protestant, but they had the words of the liturgy, they had icons.

    I think Fr. Nicholas in Santa Barbara stood up that week and said the word that kind of did the trick.

    He said, “You can’t imitate or mimic or mock the Church. You’re either in it, or you’re not. And Orthodoxy isn’t a set of texts or a bunch of pictures — it’s a living, organic community that has texts and icons, and it’s that living community where the power is that you need, and if you’re not in that community, you can have the accoutrements, but you don’t have the power.” That’s what he said.

    And I think that made them realize they had to join up — for better or worse, put up with all Orthodox ethnicisms and everything. You couldn’t just imitate it, you had to be in it. Because it was a historical community, in history, that you had to enter into — just like the Gentiles had to be grafted to Israel. Otherwise it just becomes the latest fad, in other words.

    TH: Yeah, and it isn’t any less individualistically self-willed than somebody who would get up in a polyester suit and necktie and bang the Bible and preach — it’s just, you happen to like these kinds of prayers and these kinds of pictures, but it’s still not the Church that is doing it, it’s you that’s doing it.

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