I was neither reactionary nor far right; in fact, I was raised a “back-to-earth” left y

That sounds like an accurate enough portrayal. It’s, of course, an evangelizing/educational tool – and it was very effective for me and I’m still impressed by how they go about it.

For me, I was neither reactionary nor far right; in fact, I was raised a “back-to-earth” left yet without the idealism of the West Coast of the US. I was from New Jersey USA, home of George Carlin, doubtful, skeptical of grand claims.

Yet this call was appealing that they made. I’m a bit of a social anarchist by nature. The “radicalness of Orthodoxy” didn’t appeal as much but rather the sense of historical continuity. The church I grew up in was Methodist, that I had had no problem with but I remember thinking, “needs more candles here”.

So, even though your categorization likely fits their appeal far better than my take on it, for me it was the medicinal aspects of it that were appealing. Seemed quite powerful.

They’re in communion now. I’m not even part of the Orthodox any more – not since 2002. Yet I retained all of my online Orthodox friends and fond memories of the Orthodox I knew in person – and yet knowing this group in Alaksa (or Seattle or … now I don’t remember WHERE this monastery is) is in communion with its greater church, is rather nice to me.

No longer the rebellious little “us against the world, even our own Church” but now accepted. [I think they mostly wanted to keep using the older calendar and the Moscow Patriarcate was ok with it if I remember right, I dunno]. Been so long yet strange I remember these things.

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