Posts tagged Frontier Orthodoxy
This morning on his Frontier Orthodoxy blog, Fr. Oliver Herbel offered a post with the provocative title, “St. Peter the Aleut Did Not Exist.” Fr. Oliver says that he intentionally did not publish the article here at OH.org so as to spare us the inevitable debate; however, I do think it’s appropriate that we link to the post and give people a chance to read it.
Fr. Oliver’s argument boils down to six main points:
- Unlike so many Alaskan Orthodox stories (e.g. St. Juvenaly), the St. Peter story has no supporting oral tradition.
- Fr. Michael Oleksa, the foremost scholar on Alaskan Orthodox history, has written next to nothing about St. Peter. In Orthodox Alaska, Fr. Michael makes not a single mention of Peter’s story. (I would add that Fr. Michael mentions St. Peter only in passing in Alaskan Missionary Spirituality.)
- No corroborating evidence exists — that is, there is no other evidence of Spanish-Russian violence in California in that era. The St. Peter incident sticks out as an anomaly.
- On the contrary, there is an internal Roman Catholic document from the period that actually contradicts the idea that the Spanish would torture Native Alaskans.
- There is no evidence that St. Peter and his alleged persecutors would have been able to converse in the same language, which makes the exchange between them unlikely.
- There is only one primary account of St. Peter’s martyrdom, and it is suspect for various reasons.
I’d encourage you to read the whole article, as I’ve just barely summarized Fr. Oliver’s observations. And, for the time being, I’m going to stay out of the public debate over whether St. Peter was real (and, if he was real, whether he was really martyred). I do think it is of paramount importance that the original account of St. Peter’s martyrdom be made public and translated into English. We don’t have that account, and I don’t know of anyone who has ever seen it, although in the comments to Fr. Oliver’s post, someone says that it was due to be published in a book.
At some future point, I’ll examine the pro-Peter arguments, and generally discuss the merits of his case.
This article was written by Matthew Namee.
At Frontier Orthodoxy, Fr. Oliver has published another article on Fr. Ingram Nathaniel Irvine’s career as an Episcopal priest. This time, he addresses a controversy involving Irvine, his Episcopalian bishop, and allegations of sexual misconduct. Irvine was tried by an ecclesiastical court, which found him not guilty of the charges. To read Fr. Oliver’s whole article, click here.
On Frontier Orthodoxy, Fr. Oliver has continued his examination of Fr. Ingram Nathaniel Irvine, comparing allegations against Irvine to the now well-known allegations against Archbishop Arseny. Click here to read the article.
Over on Frontier Orthodoxy, Fr. Oliver Herbel has just published a post about Fr. Ingram Nathaniel Irvine and his feud with the Episcopalian Bishop Ethelbert Talbot — a feud which ultimately led Irvine to leave the Episcopal Church and convert to Orthodoxy. To read Fr. Oliver’s post, click here.
Last August, I discussed the Irvine-Talbot controversy in some detail in a podcast on Ancient Faith Radio. Click here to listen to it.
After thinking and praying about my column, Frontier Orthodoxy, and discussing it with Fr. Andrew and Matthew, I have come to realize that it might best be fulfilled as its own blog. This surprised me as I never thought I was the blogging type. It also surprised me because I really like what we’re doing here on SOCHA and figured I’d not do much more online beyond this. Recently, though, I have noticed that the direction I wish to take Frontier Orthodoxy is not necessarily the same direction SOCHA desires to go. SOCHA has a narrower focus than I intend for Frontier Orthodoxy (both historically and otherwise) and so, Frontier Orthodoxy demands its own site. I am not leaving SOCHA entirely. I am only moving Frontier Orthodoxy to a new location: http://frontierorthodoxy.wordpress.com. I will still be around and might even post on SOCHA every once in a while. Primarily, though, I am leaving the SOCHA blogging to Fr. Andrew and Matthew, as it had been. They have established a particular kind of trajectory that may be best maintained without Frontier Orthodoxy interjected within. I do, however, still intend to develop the academic component of SOCHA and to work toward establishing a print journal this coming year (2010).
In the meantime (and beyond) I hope each of you who has found Frontier Orthodoxy worthwhile will continue to read it at its new location.