One proposed bumper sticker in this compilation of Orthodox humor!  Alot of oldies-but-goodies (What else? We’re Orthodox – even Geek Orthodox [sic]!!), but one or two I hadn’t seen before.  Funny, wise, ironic, self-deprecating, it’s all there!

Some are insiders, like the last one about the (mostly-Lenten) Liturgy of St. Basil the Great.  The actual text is “Round about You stand the Seraphim, one with six wings and the other with six wings: with two they cover their faces, with two they cover their feet, with two they fly, crying out to one another with unceasing voices and ever-resounding praises, singing the victory hymn, proclaiming, crying out, and saying,” followed by the Holy, Holy, Holy (same as the Sanctus in the Western rites, and not to be confused with the Trisagion or Thrice-Holy Hymn: “Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal, have mercy on us.”).

I’ll go them one better: This is probably so big a problem for priests because I’m guessing they heard in seminary that feet is said to be an ancient euphemism for privates (or lower body if you like), hence fly (ie, pants zipper – though of course angels don’t wear pants, but gowns!)!  I’m not certain that’s taught in Orthodox seminaries, but it is in Latin and Protestant ones….  Maybe my lower body would be preferable for us Orthodox.  My Western seminary professors were always trying to find extra sex in Scriptures and ancient writings – as if there weren’t enough!  Maybe they were frustrated English majors!!!  (I have a Bachelor’s in English, so I can say that! 😉 )

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  1. Check out this site and let me know what you think! Im new to the studies of Christianity and would love to know what you could teach me! http://www.newchristianvoices.com/

    Christina Mennella

  2. Leo Peter O'Filon

    Welcome, Christina, and thanks for asking!

    From a perspective of studies of Christianity, I’d say New Christian Voices (henceforth NCV) aspires – it seems to be a relatively new site – to represent a portion of Christianity, “conservative Evangelical” Protestantism (CEP). Tying it in to Orthodoxy here, there are thousands of Orthodox who’ve converted to canonical Orthodoxy from CEP in the last twenty years or more, especially in the U.S. and Britain. (I’d include here “conservative” Anglicans and Episcopalians, as well as the other denominations.) NCV seems to include fairly innocuous material, but also material that many non-CEP Christians might find offensive, in bad taste, or simply not enjoyable or upbuilding, including many Orthodox, who tend to or may span the political, ideological, racial, economic, or social spectra. For most of the last century surveys rather consistently reported Americans to be roughly a quarter Catholic, a quarter believing “the Bible should be interpreted literally” (usually described as Evangelical or Fundamentalist Protestants), and most of the other half of America moderate to liberal Protestants. Just to give you an idea of the size of NCV’s potential audience.

    (There was a recent survey that got alot of media attention saying America was about to stop being a majority-Protestant country, but I looked at the data more closely, and found that was mostly “spin,” and affiliation numbers remain pretty much as stated. There were other reports from that study that I haven’t looked into. I’ve studied Catholic and some Protestant theology for many years; also, sociology of religion is a little bit of a hobby of mine; and I’ve worked as a journalist with a specialty at decoding spin. For what it’s worth….)

    As for Orthodoxy, estimates are hard to come by for a variety of reasons: anywhere between one and seven million today in the U.S. or North America. Globally, a little over a billion Catholics, a little over a billion Protestants, 100-400 million Orthodox (mostly in the former Soviet Union).

    In “CEP,” I put the conservative in quotation marks in deference to most of the world outside the U.S., which sees what we call conservative as Classical Liberal, and tends to call it just liberal or neoliberal. OTOH, it’s quite fair to call the kind of Evangelicalism represented at NCV conservative theologically, in contrast to moderate and liberal Protestantism: conservative in the sense of that “literal interpretation of the Bible” and defense of what it receives as traditional Christian, or Western Christian, or (pre-“Enlightenment”) Protestant, doctrines. However, Orthodoxy doesn’t consider CEP “conservative” enough, because it includes united-Western Christian innovations from the latter part of the first millennium AD and early second millennium, as well as innovations since the Protestant Reformation, and it retains less than the fullness of the o/Orthodox Christian Faith of the West from most of the first millennium, which the West shared with the Chalcedonian Orthodox East – one might even say received from it.

    I also include Evangelical in quotes because Orthodoxy considers itself – only by the Grace and Holy Spirit of God and no merit of its own – to be the true evangelic Faith, that is, the Faith of the Gospels, and by extension of terminology, the entire Scriptures. (In fact Orthodoxy teaches that CEPs lack parts of Scripture.)

    And I emphasize the Protestantism in “CEP” because in U.S. public discourse it’s easy to forget that the word “Christian” covers more non-Evangelicals than Evangelicals, and Evangelicalism is actually a subset of Protestantism, itself a subset of Christianity; so Evangelicalism is a subset of a subset of Christianity. Though some Orthodox deny the name Christian to non-Orthodox theologically, except when trying to be polite.

    BTW, the word orthodox is sometimes used or claimed among or by some Protestant or Catholic groups, sometimes even in their official names, but rarely is the fullness or correctness of orthodoxy of The Orthodox Church intended, as this blog attempts to represent.

    (PS: I’m tiptoeing around ‘politics’ because I’m trying to keep this blog focused on Orthodoxy itself, not, say, politics or culture “from an Orthodox perspective” or anything, since Orthodox disagree about many things, but far less about Orthodoxy itself.)

    Is any of this what you were looking for?




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