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I have much appreciated your travel thoughts in these past few posts. It seems that we Orthodox are tempted in two directions with regard to the EP, to stress how unimportant the see is, or to rhetorically gather behind it in a kind of tired clownish militant fashion that, these days, sounds a bit too much like the drone of a Eugène Ionesco play. But aside from all that one finds the New Rome doing what Orthodox seem to always end up doing - suffer. Sometimes I wonder if the singular witness of our Church to the contemporary world is that we are superbly unsuccessful. And in the midst of their unsuccesses I find so many of my Orthodox brethren saying, as Fr. Schmemann did while cancer ate him away, "Lord, it is good to be here."

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