January 7, 2020
To all Rectors, Priest-in-charge, Deacons, Monastics and Laity of the Diocese of the Midwest.
Glory to Jesus Christ!
Each month starting in January, we will be posting to our Diocesan website a series of reflections on the 50th Anniversary of the Autocephaly of the Orthodox Church in America. I mentioned this in my letter dated October 1,2019, (https://www.midwestdiocese.org/news_191001_1).
As you read the thoughts of various people who are or have been in our diocese, please remember that they are not speaking as official spokespersons of the Church. They are sharing their own observations and thoughts on how the original vision of the autocephaly has played out over these first 50 years, and the impact the autocephaly itself has had on them and on their own personal experience in the Church.
We have senior and newly ordained priests offering their reflections, as well as laypersons. We wanted different perspectives; and so, we invited reflections from people who were there in the beginning and before, and from those who came into the church between the 1990’s and the 2000’s.
With some of the essays that you read you may agree; with others you may not. The point of these monthly reflections is not to offer essays in which every writer hits a home run. The goal is to stimulate your own thinking as to what the Autocephaly of the Orthodox Church in America means to you. These essays can be used as the springboard for further discussion with your parish priest and in your parishes. To facilitate that purpose, they are uploaded to the Diocesan website as PDFs. As such, they can be downloaded, printed and distributed for use as discussion guides, or in any other useful way.
The first reflection from Fr. Thaddeus Wojcik will be forthcoming shortly.
I look forward to seeing you at our upcoming deanery celebrations throughout the year in the Midwest. Asking your forgiveness for my inadequacies, I remain.
The unworthy +Paul
May the blessing of the Lord be upon you.