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Update on an update
Following on my update of 27 February:

I have finally spoken with Archbp Simon. We have reached a compromise: I do not retire officially, but my duties as deacon are reduced to one liturgy a week. I am also free to pass on the reading of the Gospel in the Sunday liturgy to a native, lower-ranking Russian deacon.

This is not too bad a solution in that it allows to read the Saturday evening service at home in English. It ends the complaints of certain parishioners about my heavy accent in Slavonic. And since I have no intention to change my habit of going to church every Sunday, and since we are out of communion with most of the rest of the Orthodox Church, I might as well continue at St Nicholas.

My concerns with our failure to teach a more advanced spirituality remain, as does my dislike of the de facto monopoly of the word by the priesthood – the two are pretty closely inter-related. We have some good people in our parish, some of whom will always remain at a fairly simple level, but are decent and honest people. Others I suspect could, with encouragement and guidance, and the right to share with others what their faith actually means to them, move further down the Christian path.

My own personal path with God – receiving and giving – will continue, I suspect, largely outside our diocese. A pity, but perhaps inevitable.

I thank you all for your prayers, and wish you all a good Lent,

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Hopefully. I had two much younger deacons under me today at the liturgy and let them do nearly all the work - especially the vsem vsi with those horrible, hypocritical Ukraine prayers.

Edited at 2019-03-10 02:06 pm (UTC)

I agree that it's not too bad.

Let's hope it stays that way.

Edited at 2019-03-10 02:07 pm (UTC)

I see this as positive news. Hope this new modus operandi will be to your spiritual (as well as bodily) benefit. And wish you a good Lent as well!
Please forgive me if anything I said offended you in any way.

Thanks for this. Have a good Lent and no, you have not offended me. Forgive me equally.

Same here, nothing to forgive -)

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