Convention Season

We’ve been a bit sparse on posts the past couple of weeks, so I thought I would at least put up a brief note so you don’t think we’ve disappeared.  Our collective quietness has been due, of course, to some summer vacationing, but also because some of us are attending to the professional habits that summer so often occasions—conferences.

I always imagine when the summer begins that I will have all sorts of time for writing, reading, perhaps getting back to long-neglected exercise and such, but I nearly invariably fail to account for all this convening, symposing, etc.  I am even now writing from my room at our archdiocesan clergy symposium, and not even ten days ago I was at a diocesan-level event.

One thing that occurs to me in participating in these events in their Orthodox context, especially as I read word of such things going on in other communions simultaneously, is that the sensibility we have here seems to be becoming rarer elsewhere.  And what is that sensibility?  It is not really the specifics of doctrine and praxis—of course those are different.  Rather, it is the general sense of orthodoxy itself, that we have a tradition and a standard to which we are responsible, a tradition that we have a duty to pass on unaltered.

As I watch certain other communions vote to do funeral rites for pets or to confer ordination on people who deny or transgress the fundamentals of human nature, I have less confidence that we any longer share this most basic of Christian metaphysical contours—that there is Truth and we are bound to follow it, else we risk everything.