Thursday, January 10, 2019

International Orthodox Theological Association notes

(OCA) - His Eminence, Archbishop Alexander of Dallas, the South and the Bulgarian Diocese is among the participants representing the Orthodox Church in America at the inaugural conference of the International Orthodox Theological Association [IOTA], which opened in Iasi, Romania on Wednesday, January 9, 2019.

The theme—“A Call to Pan-Orthodox Unity”—will be explored in a variety of presentations and papers throughout the conference, which concludes on January 13. His Eminence, Metropolitan Kallistos [Ware] of Diokleia, serves as the conference’s keynote speaker, while 50 sessions will highlight the work of some 300 Church leaders, scholars and professionals representing over 30 countries.

In addition to Archbishop Alexander, presentations will be offered by the OCA’s Dr. Peter Bouteneff, Dr. Frank Cerra, Archpriest Michael Oleksa, Archpriest John Parker, and Prof. Richard Schneider, among others. Also attending are Deacon Nicholas Denysenko; Deacon Pavel Gavrilyuk, IOTA founder and president; and Archpriest Chad Hatfield.

In the past year, IOTA has grown into a network of several hundred well-respected Orthodox Christian leaders from around the world. Besides theologians, IOTA’s membership includes philosophers, historians, social scientists, political scientists, and professionals, and it welcomes scholars and scholar-practitioners from other fields related to the Orthodox Christian studies. IOTA is organized into 25 groups, each representing a different area of study, including both traditional theological disciplines, such as Biblical Studies, Dogmatic Theology, Moral Theology, and Liturgical Studies as well as newer fields, such as Missiology, Orthodoxy and International Relations, Orthodoxy in the Public Square and the Media, Religion and Science. These groups are parts of what one might call an Orthodox Republic of Letters, dedicated to free, honest, and respectful exchange of ideas, helping the Church to come to terms with the challenges of our time.

Additional information is available on IOTA’s website, together with a comprehensive list of presentations and papers.

A video of Archbishop Alexander’s homily, delivered in the Iasi Metropolitan Cathedral during the Divine Liturgy on the eve of the conference’s opening, is also available for viewing.


  1. Wow, the participants, academics and "theologians" from the English speaking side (I am not familiar with the euro/non english contingent) are real smorgasbord of the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly as they say. When I saw that Dr. Woloshack and Dr. Frost were 2 of the 3 officers, I almost did not turn the digital page but the conference appears to have its share of worthy participants and subjects...along with the usual "ecology", "post colonial", and female ordination advocacy of course.

    Fortunately or unfortunately depending on your perspective, these sorts of gatherings and academic Orthodox "theologians" don't really impact parish/monastic life at all. Much of it is "the usual suspects" talking to each about their usual idiosyncratic concerns, as they have been for years.

    I am assuming that because it is in Romania, the Romanian Church and/or government actually paid for all of this(?).

    1. Why theologian in scare quotes?

      I mean, you could just accept the colloquial use of the term, or not assume that they aren't theologians in the fullest sense of the word.

    2. "you could just accept the colloquial use of the term..."

      No thanks ;)

  2. Replies
    1. And freemasons, the UN, gay Ukrainian Nazis, and of course uniates and all papists.

    2. Ha! Yes 123, we need to able to talk about these things without all the histrionics...

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    4. Could we not, please!? At this point this is just straight up anti Semitism. Literal white supremacists and Neo Nazis use Soros as a scare tactic. Orthodox Christians should not be take cues from those ppl

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    6. Not buying that crap for a second. Soros does not even practice Judaism nor does he believe in God. The Nazi or racist label is a leftist tactic to shut down opposition. One of Soro's biggest critics, Michael Savage, IS a Jew. And Soros's big money shut him down with the local talk station.
      To say that anyone criticizing Soros is anti Semitic is like saying anyone criticizing Putin is anti Russian.
      If you want to label me anti-Semetic, because I criticize Fr. Reardon going into synagogues to recite the psalms in Hebrew, knock yourself out. At least Jake here shows more objective thinking.

    7. Well, I AM more of a Aristotelian than a Platonist ;)

      Fr. (Patrick I assume) Reardon in synagogues? Did not know. Is yours a "canonical" objection or perhaps one based on the vanity of ecumenism?

  3. The homily by Archbishop Alexander is great, which is to say it's worth listening to carefully despite the somewhat awkward translation from English into Romanian. Wisdom!

  4. Daniel Ph, I am amazed that opposition to George Soros could be termed anti-Semite. You are aware that during WWII he was a Nazi colaborater? He turned felllow Jews over to the Nazis.

    You are aware that he works to subvert cultures and countries for his own personal gain? He is persona non grata in several.

    Ture, he can become a boogy man but his nefarious intentions are real.

  5. I don't recall that Soros was a Nazi collaborator per se. He did, however, profit from his fellow Jews being taken to the camps.
    In case, Daniel or anyone else thinks I gleaned this info from some conspiracy theory website, they would be wrong. I use Soros's own words as spoken by him at an interview on CBS 60 Minutes. Anyone can probably find said interview on YouTube inside of 90 seconds.