article following, modified, so as to tear away "illusion" is important
especially when viewed from the perspective of what the Holy and patristic
fathers have had to say... The article initially was sent to us by someone
of the one those whose ethnic jurisdictional stance has caused for errant
illusion... We, therefore make correction and present to you the following:
In almost every city around the globe one can find pseudo-catholic
or pseudo orthodox splinter groups that were started by someone for a particular
(sometimes selfish purpose), whether unconsciously or consciously. Though
some of them have religious convictions, sadly to say, a few of them are
simply self-styled. Often such groups are called "vagante" from the Latin
word "vagans" [pronounced vaagaans], because their leaders and members
(if any) do not belong to a church (other than the one they themselves
created) and are therefore sometimes considered as being spiritually vagrant.
The actual word "Vagante" actually means, "A vagrant bishop without a See
or diocese", etc. And this came about in centuries past (before electricity,
during the age of candle use for lighting, because of wars which caused
for bishops to travel outside of their geographical areas as the war from
invasions impacted the religious praxis and beliefs of the people by forced
conversion or death to unchristian religions).
Later, after the United States of America was formed, the Roman Catholic
Church, The Greek Orthodox, Russian Orthodox and others did much the same
by coming to the shores of the U.S.A. and started their own diocese in
much the same manner. Even in these times, we see this happening
by the Greek Orthodox, Russian Orthodox, and other Churches.
Yet, as with everything, while much good has come out of such
vagante Episcopi, so it happens in that which is called the "Autocephalous"
and "Independent Movement" groups who are not under the control of the
Roman Pope or any one of the other Patriarchates, good and bad does follow
too, no differently than in the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Churches.
There are some who do not belong to either of the two groups (Roman
Catholic or any of the Eastern Orthodox Patriarchates), as they are presently
understood, but are truly "Autocephalous" and have their own right, based
on documented evidence, for coming into existence as autocephalous (or
"Independent" from a Patriarch or Pope) based on the Seven Ecumenical Councils
and the Holy Bible for so long as they maintain the faith once delivered
in all that the commission charge of their episcopacy requires without
adulteration or alteration and that, when passing it on, maintain continuity
of the same requirements upon those whom they impose their hands without
alteration or adulteration.
The larger mega-churches such as those who belong to either the Vatican
based Roman Church, or one of the Patriarchates; would have you believe
that unless you belong to either one of the two Jurisdictions, you are
not in the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church of truth. This
is unkind and not true whatsoever. There are articles on this website
which prove this point and some of those articles are linked at the bottom
of this page. The Roman Catholic Church and some of the Eastern Orthodox
Churches take an arrogant, often elitist approach in which they do not
necessarily believe that the Church is large enough
to accommodate various philosophies, and even theologies, that are not
diametrically opposed to the faith and morals taught by the Apostolic Church,
their own by actions of intimidation, and often through newsletters or
notices to the faithful with untruthful claims and inaccurate statements
about those not under them or one of the primary Patriarchs directly.
The "Scholastic" disease mentioned infers that which several Holy
Fathers had articulated in times past. The "Scholasticism" of these
times involve clergy who have gone or go to a seminary under their particular
jurisdiction and/or attended a University where Protestants taught which
infected the clergyperson, tainting their understandings from that which
was believed and practiced from that which was once delivered in a manner
whereby they have or are becoming one with those who have joined in with
the false movement of these times known as "ecumenism" or the "Ecumenist
Movement" much opposed by the Seven Ecumenical Councils and the renowned
"St. John Maximovitch" and blessed Father Seraphim Rose. Their struggles
in life, before their repose, brought forth much understanding concerning
the false movement of "Evangelicalism" and the "Ecumenist Movement" which
is Protestant inspired as a result of their not being able to be considered
as one in and with the true Christian Church. In short, when understanding
the writings of the patristic Holy Fathers and Saints, one learns that
most of the Protestants of these times, such as Pentecostals,
of Christ, Assemblies of God, etc.
have snuck in through the back door through the World Council of Churches
and the World Council of Bishops which the Roman Catholic Church has now
bedded down with in accepting their membership, heterodox faith and beliefs
(doctrines) in the World Council of Churches as has some of the Eastern
Many characteristics have been attributed, for right or wrong,
to the vagante world. The following guidelines have been found most helpful
and Comments are made for consideration:
(I) Thirteen points on the ecclesiastical or canonical level:
(1) A "Bishop" or church without ordinary laity either in the Home-Church
movement, Orthodox in Resistance movement, or of a Church building.
A "Bishop" may be in one of the "Holy Orders" and residing
in such as a "Benedictine" or "Franciscan" manner of life whereby he serves
only a few but, primarily, maintains a lifestyle concomitant with the prayer
life of a monastic.
(2) Lack of education of all or the most of clergy.
While this is basically true, in part, it is not wholly
accurate in that there are several well known holy men who have led a life
without adhering to the disease of 'scholasticism' - yet, maintained a
habit of being able to articulate the faith for those who are searching
(3) More "bishops" than actually needed.
This too can be true for some because those who became a
"bishop" - later moved on to a lifestyle more akin to that stated above
in item (1). And others who realized their mistakes and withdrew
from or went over to other jurisdictions to correct what they felt from
the Holy Spirit. Some needed no re-ordination or re-consecration
because their orders were wholly valid and licit.
(4) "Bishops" with a nonexistent diocese or a diocese/church on paper
Here again, we remind you of how, in these later times in
the U.S.A. - both the Greek, Russian and Roman Churches have played a part
in the growth of the mega-church which began with vagante bishops.
Yet, there are those who believe that one must be a member of a larger
jurisdiction that is headed by either the Pope (Roman Catholic) or one
of the Patriarchates. Yet, especially with the Greek Orthodox, the
Patriarchate is not truly elected by the clergy and faithful because he
is denounced if not controlled by the government of Turkey who controls
who is accepted or rejected and often make their own decisions as to who
will be the Patriarch of Constantinople over and above the clergy and people.
This is intimidation and governmental (Caesar) force!
(5) Self assumed titles or elevations (such as Metropolitan, Archbishop,
Primate, Doctor, D.D., etc.) never given to or earned by the person.
True in some situations and instances, but not always true.
Again, beware... there are those who do not bite the bullet of the "Scholastic
disease" which has brought about many in various jurisdictions to join
in with the Pope and several Patriarchs and their membership in and with
the heretical 'ecumenist movement' which is opposed by the Seven Ecumenical
Councils of ancient times which they have departed from.
(6) Lack of theological and/or liturgical formation and knowledge by
Specific requirements are stated by those ancient councils which
hold true to the Faith and Praxis of that which was handed down by the
Life and Teachings of Jesus Christ through the Holy Apostles and must therefore
be admitted and adhered to in these times. That is the one true hallmark
of those who adhere to the faith once delivered, not that which is in these
times a 'false ecumenism'. Refer to (1), (2) and (4) above. Not all
who hold such titles obtained them through self-appropriation, but through
genuine means as sanctioned by their own Jurisdiction or Church, not being
a self made jurisdiction or church, but having approbation in accordance
with the norms of the Seven Ecumenical Councils of ancient times.
Refer to all the above for reliance.
(7) Isolationism, religious fanaticism and holier-than-thou existence.
This is not necessarily true. While a few might fit
into this idea, the majority have found for themselves that a life more
in tune with what has been said in the above item (1) would be more fitting.
Yet, we must again look to the mega-churches and recognize that this has
more often than not, fit them as well. For a Bishop or clergyman
to take to a form of isolationism, religious fanaticism and holier-than-though
is to (a) take to a form of living and faith practice stated in item (1)
above, which is (in part) MONASTICISM, Contemplation - Meditation in a
secluded manner consistent with a form of monastic lifestyle.
(8) Refusal, but more often an inability to enter ecumenical relations
with other viable jurisdictions of the same faith.
As regards 'fanaticism' - to defend the faith once delivered, is
no different than what both the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Jurisdictions
do, especially those of ethnic origin.
As to 'holier-than-thou existence, one may (more often than not)
take to becoming a defender of the faith once delivered by becoming a member
of the growing movement called "Orthodox Churches in Resistance" as a result
of the heretical and apostate "Ecumenist Movement" which many of the mega-churches
have joined in with (unknowingly) by the actions of the Pope (Roman Catholic)
and many of the Patriarchs of the various Eastern Orthodox Churches of
these times. And, by their actions, as the past has proven time and again...
their own actions have been more often than not... holier-than-thou, fanatic
in producing adulterations and alterations to the praxis and faith once
delivered by the Holy Apostles and the Seven Ecumenical Councils!
While partially true, it must be noted that the obstacles
of Faith and Praxis is involved as the 'ecumenical' relations more often
than not in these times, involve the adherence to the heretically false
beliefs of todays World Council of Churches, the World Council of Bishops,
contrary to the Seven Ecumenical Councils.
(9) Claims of legitimacy that easily can be refuted.
This is partially true for some. But there are many
who, when viewed, can not refute their legitimacy except when viewed by
either the Roman Catholic Church or one of the Eastern Orthodox Patriarchates
who use their own standards which involve, primarily being under them.
(10) Lust for power and numbers.
If you go to them (Roman Catholic or one of the Churches under an
Eastern Orthodox Patriarchate, some will refute the right of the other
for being in existence. The same holds true, as for example, the
Russian Orthodox Church out of Moscow, concerning various other "Russian"
churches who are directly under Constantinople of which Constantinople
refutes the right of existence for some who are under the "Russian" Patriarchate.
Of course, the Roman Catholic Church normally denies the right of any not
of their own who do not belong to an Eastern Orthodox Patriarch.
Thus, it depends upon whom you approach as to who will truly tell the truth
of who is legitimate and who is not!
This more often applies to the Roman Catholic Church and
most of the Eastern Orthodox Churches and only a few of the remaining.
(11) Due to envy, character assassinations of legitimate churches, jurisdictions
Character assassination due to envy is more often than not
a disease that should have been eliminated by the mega-churches of the
Roman Catholic Church and many of those who belong to the more ethnic oriented
Patriarchates of the Eastern Orthodox Church. It is said that copying
the actions of others is a form of emulation and to be much respected.
Yet, our Holy Patristic Fathers, especially St. John Maximovitch and blessed
Father Seraphim Rose taught against this.
(12) Previous convictions or repeated trouble with the law.
Character Assassination is often mis-used when a Church leader of
the Orthodox Catholic has had to defend himself and his flock from the
antics of the larger mega-church who themselves have given a false idea
that only they hold the right to determine who is or is not valid, true
The early Seven Ecumenical Councils mean nothing to them of the present
day Eastern Orthodox Churches or the Roman Catholic Church by their memberships
in the World Council of Churches and the World Council of Bishops, or such
character assassination would not have come about if they remained true
to the faith and praxis once delivered.
Partially true! We caution you in using this particular
criteria as there are many well known priests during WWII and since, even
to these times in which we live, where a priest, even bishops, have gone
to their death if not imprisonment to defend the Seals of the Confessional
which is pillar of the Church Catholic, taking false charges/convictions
in order to protect the sanctity of the pillars of the Church. And,
more often than not, we see in these times of the Roman Church's sex scandals
where this becoming a norm in some instances.
(13) "Bishops" or "clergy" changing residency a lot or remain in hiding
Refer to previous as above.
(II) Seven points on the moral level:
(1) Deceiving people by concealing the true size and nature of the
"church". Partially true.
Not always, and for most, not true at all. Of those of the
Protestant flavor who attempt a "cafeteria" approach to appear "Catholic"
- there are some who would most definitely fit into this mold of thought.
(2) Claiming members or churches that aren't part of this "church".
"this Church" - meaning, the ethnic Eastern Orthodox Patriarchate
or the Roman Catholic Church idea of being under their authority and control.
(3) Controlling "clergy" and people through sexual and/or financial
This is a claim often made by the ethnic Orthodox and is
attributed as a result of the Roman Catholic Sex Scandals which have swept
around the world. Thus, those who follow the Western style (Roman
Catholic without the errors of Rome), are often singled out by both the
Eastern Orthodox Church clergy and those of the Roman Catholic Church with
the above statement for consideration in viewing those not under them when,
in fact, they (Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox) are responsible and
guilty of the same as history so often testifies too.
(4) Controlling people's personal lives by imposing pharisaical rules
or allowing lifestyles that are contrary to the Christian faith.
The ethnic orthodox and Roman Catholic churches have often
been very pharisaical in their application and approach to the faithful
through the art of intimidation and force (Historical truth) such as not
performing the rites of true Christian burial because an individual was
dying and could not maintain their continued contributions or pledges (often
more than the one-tenth biblical injunction for maintaining the clergy)
and as to lifestyles, this is attributed to all the churches in one form
or another. Please, re-read all the above.
(5) Making inaccurate statements about the "church's" history, background,
succession, teachings and practices.
True faith and praxis of the church Catholic, be it Eastern or Western
would not deny the protection and services offered by the Church unless
their concerns were more materialistic (money, gold, silver, ego, image)
History has proven time and again that the very things said
above, is exactly what has happened in both the Roman Catholic Church and
the various Eastern Orthodox Churches.
(6) "Clergy" with criminal backgrounds, contrary to scriptural or canonical
standards [cf. 1 Timothy 3, etc.]
This is a bit of a mis-nomer and actually the biblical quote
is a bit mis-used and applied in these instances - in that the Church
is truly a hospital for sick souls, not for those who consider themselves
as 'saved' or 'born again' like the Protestant Evangelicals often claim.
(7) Dishonesty in fiscal matters.
As already alluded to in above items, the past is rife with those
who have gone to their deaths or suffered imprisonment for the sake of
the Church (either abroad or here in the United States), while there are
also some who have, by civil law standards, been convicted of crimes that
they were not truly guilty of ... but they accepted the false convictions
for the sake of the faith in the true One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic
Church of Jesus Christ, not man-made.
As to the quote from scripture, if you were to read the whole part
of scripture referenced ... 1 Timothy 5 is surely mandated, "Now the
end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience,
and of faith unfeigned..." It is "faith unfeigned" along with charity
that makes one to wonder as to the churches in these times. Again,
the Church is a spiritual hospital for sick souls and not for those whose
self-righteousness exceeds all others who know they are strugglers in this
life for the life to come. One may truly ask, what happened to teaching
by Jesus Christ about "Repentance"
Does not clergy of either the Roman Catholic Church and the Eastern Orthodox
practice these things as regards those clergy of their and other jurisdictions
when civil (Caesar's) law takes action for right or wrong?
This is another area in which much has to be considered
as regards the formation of the Church. While a bishop is required
to be a Servant unto Christ and His children, the faithful, he is also
required to be a good and Godly steward in the formation of ministries
and such other things whereby the Church and her people do not suffer unwantingly.
Does the Church both East and West do these things? Minimally
they do them only insofar as 'show-and-tell' or 'self-image' - and when
those who have not been able to maintain pledges or contributions or participation
in the activities of a particular church, the church denies them not on
the basis of their faith, but on the basis of their pocket-book.
This is more true of the Ethnic Orthodox and the Roman Catholic Churches.
And, even so, given this understanding, it is the duty and responsibility
of a Bishop and Priest of the true church to make no demands upon the people
which he would not make upon himself which, is no more than what the apostles
This means, if necessary, that the Bishop and Priest may need to
obtain an adjacent secular job in order to maintain themselves without
overburdening the people.
For many clergy (Bishop and Priest, even monks) in the Orthodox Catholic
Churches in resistance, they receive no pay and supply out of their own
personal pockets what the people may need where possible.
To open the 'books' of a church to secular authorities, except in
reporting to the government what is required, any other action(s) is an
abomination to the ancient faith because the people who wish to give in
secret are now exposed and thus violates both Holy Scripture as well as
the Life and Teachings of Jesus Christ Himself.
What fiscal matters of a church is involved, should (in many instances)
be controlled by the parish or church board who report to the bishop or
clergyman. In many instances, the fiscal management of the Church
is nothing more than the church bank account which the bishop or clergyman
can and should make available if such exists and only that which pertains
to the Church or Parish. Otherwise, all else should be closed where
the faithful are unduly exposed. In many other instances, the clergyman
often relies on the blessings of God to aide him in maintaining his own
sustenance without requiring or demanding that the people provide beyond
immediate needs for worship services and some events on holy festival days.
A significant characteristic of vagrant people is going from one
group to another. It is the ego-driven urge for power and/or constant recognition,
they will never find. Hence the need to deceive while creating lies about
In order to gain esteem with innocent people and drawing attention
to themselves, they will steal sheep and create rumors about real church
leaders. - As in many abuse cases, vagrants themselves have often been
victims to slander and malice of the most heinous kind. In these
days which the Roman Catholic Church's Sex Scandal has become high profile,
as well as some Orthodox, we hear little (minimal) to nothing about the
Protestant horrors involving the same. Research shows that the United
States and Canada are Protestant countries and that many of accusations
come from converts to Protestantism who have been impinged with such heretical
and apostate beliefs whereby most Protestant clergy do not share the same
praxis and faith (doctrinal) beliefs as do those of the One, Holy, Catholic
and Apostolic Church. Thus, with the continuing evolvement of the
Protestant based World Council of Churches, Pentecostals, Baptists, Assemblies
of God, Mormons, Jehovah's Witnesses and more; encourage their former Roman
and Orthodox converts to violate the "Repentance" and "Forgiveness" of
the churches of their former faith by laying allegations and charges in
order to destroy the very roots of the faith which is based in Orthodoxy
and from which the Roman Catholic Church initially sprung.
It is a vicious circle most are unable to break. Their endeavors
have nothing to do with church, theology and even Christianity's faith
and praxis. It is a psychological problem! And this is very true of the
mega-churches of the East and West where it began and has continued for
Words and their meanings put into action are often barriers to association
with such individuals. For example:
Bias: to foster prejudice
Bigotry: unquestioned attachment to a particular creed and intolerant
of the religious beliefs and practices of others
Prejudice: premature judgment
Racism: any program or practice of racial discrimination, segregation,
etc., based on a doctrine or teaching, without scientific support, claiming
to find racial differences in character, intelligence, etc., that supports
the superiority of one race over another or others and that seeks to maintain
the supposed purity of a race or the races
Discrimination: to make distinctions in treatment showing partiality
in favor of or prejudice against
There are many more characteristics, of course, and not all of them
listed here are found in every sect or person.
It looks like that those mentioned here, though, fit some individuals
or groupings. The best measure is to simply leave them alone. They will
soon disappear, move away, change to a different grouping, and so forth.
Some of them are just a paper "church" anyway, with two or three individuals
(if even that) putting out fancy web pages and made up denominations as
to justify their vagrant existence. A word of warning in applying
this measure of unworthiness though.... Christ reminded us that where two
or three are gathered together in His name, there also will He be, meaning
as the Church. Their names and titles only sound good. They have no substance,
let alone recognition from any mainline or decent Christian church.
The "mainline" or "Christian" church is referring more often than not to
those of the present day heretical and, some apostate, churches who have
joined in and with the "Ecumenist Movement".
It is our prayer that God have mercy on their souls.
Some suggestions when inquiring about a particular church
- How many clergy has this
church? How many parishes? Total membership?
- What is the ratio between bishops, clergy and laity?
- Ask for a directory. Every real church publishes a clergy roster
or church directory.
- Investigate the credentials of each clergy person.
- Call the local clergy association or ecumenical organization (where
the headquarters of the church are located) and inquire about this church.
Be careful with this suggestion as it leads, more often than not, to the
doorsteps of heretical and some apostate churches who belong to the World
Council of Churches and the World Council of Bishops who are part and partial
to the false ecumenism of today.
- Ask for last year's fiscal statement. Such statements are sometimes
made public in some non-profit organizations that are not necessarily establish
as a church. This is dependant upon the State in which it originates
and the laws governing such.
- Ask for the church's constitution and by-laws. They also should
be readily available to anyone.
- Find out about the history, background, and ministry of this church.
primary guidance in all things relating to the above Q&A; we add the
not lest you be judged, for with what judgment you judge, so shall you
be judged" (Matthew 7:1-2
is better that one takes care not to be so infected with the disease of
scholasticism where one becomes wise in their own self deceptions and conceits..."
Know and Learn before judging anyone or any
Un-canonical or not?
Canonical Problem in the United States today!
Real Look At Canonicity Yesterday & Today
Jurisdiction OR NOT?