Fr. Pierre Haab, Switzerland: His long journey from Roman Catholicism, Buddhism and Hinduism to Orthodoxy


Fr. Pierre Haab, Switzerland: His long journey from Roman Catholicism, Buddhism and Hinduism to Orthodoxy

Aviv Saliu-Diallo, Pierre Haab

Fr. Pierre Haab, a Swiss former Roman Catholic who was disappointed with his religion and was carried away by Buddhism, Hinduism and other screamingly “fashionable” Eastern teachings and who is now a subdeacon of the Orthodox Cathedral of the Exaltation of the Cross in Geneva, speaks about his conversion to Orthodoxy.

* * *

—Can you tell us a few words about your family, education and the story of your conversion to the Orthodox faith?

I was born in an under-developed, impoverished, hungry country where the sky is permanently overcast with dark clouds—of course, in the spiritual sense. I am speaking of Switzerland, and especially of the city of Geneva—the center of world freemasonry and finances, the stronghold of obscurantist heresy, and a materialistic megalopolis that is enjoying the lulling, stable comfort that easily protects it from the numerous everyday tragedies of humanity.

My parents raised me in the Roman Catholic faith that they had inherited from their ancestors, for which I am extremely grateful to them; they implanted the fundamentals of Christian Revelation in me from childhood—namely faith in God, the doctrine and the necessity of prayer.

We were a practicing Catholic family. We attended Mass on Sundays and major Church feasts, and prayer was a part of our daily life (at least it was so for the first ten years of my childhood). My father, a journalist, devoted his professional life to the protection of the oppressed and justice. As far as my parents are concerned, they did their best to provide the continuity of religious education in our family.

As for the Church, though in my case the more precise name was “Papism”, the situation was different. As a child (in the 1950s) I felt comfortable in that religious environment; for example, I had no problem with prayers in Latin. Although for me faith was “the faith in obedience,” I used to ask many questions, and the adults—my parents and priests—were unable to answer them. And if they did answer me, they did it with a smile and condescendingly, thinking that I was trying to get to the core of the matter too seriously. They gave me to understand that performing the morally required duties was enough for me. And I decided that I would get the answers to my questions later through my independent, in-depth research and analysis of the primary sources, where the morals come from. Judging by my childhood memories, I always had a thirst for truth.

So I was waiting for some changes, when, at the very dawn of my youth, a crucial event happened in the West—a real revolution in Papism (which is still going on today). I mean the Second Vatican Council of 1962. Over a short span of several months (or, in some cases, two to three years) a whole set of rules which had been shaped in the living daily reality of Western Christianity formany centuries, were abolished, declared invalid and obsolete and even partly prohibited; in the twinkling of an eye this heritage was declared the lifeless and dusty relics of archeology. For example, thenceforth during the Mass the officiating priest and the altar were “turned around” and must face toward the congregation; the use of Latin—the centuries-old language of Western liturgies—was banned; the Sunday Mass was moved to Saturday evening—in order to give believers the opportunity to go skiing or sleep more on Sunday morning; the cassock (or soutane)—a non-liturgical garment traditionally worn by Catholic clergy—was declared “unnecessary”; all fasts (the Eucharistic fast, Lent and fasting on Fridays) were abolished; the sacramental wafers are distributed among the faithful by lay people (of both sexes) to “assist” the priest in his “work” and so on.

On the whole, it was an unhealthy thirst for changes. Continuity was no longer supported—it was seen as a sign of death. Instability became the norm, coupled with its main and inevitable consequence—the complacent confidence that thanks to our modern civilization we infinitely surpass all that Continue reading “Fr. Pierre Haab, Switzerland: His long journey from Roman Catholicism, Buddhism and Hinduism to Orthodoxy”


Η Ορθόδοξη Βάπτιση ενός πρώην Ρωμαιοκαθολικού από τον Άγιο Ιάκωβο Τσαλίκη της Εύβοιας (+1991)


Η Ορθόδοξη Βάπτιση ενός πρώην Ρωμαιοκαθολικού

από τον Άγιο Ιάκωβο Τσαλίκη της Εύβοιας (+1991)

Περίπου το 1990 ένας Ρωμαιοκαθολικός φαρμακοποιός από τον Βόλο, είχε κατηχηθεί και ήθελε να βαπτισθεί Ορθόδοξος, στο Μοναστήρι του Οσίου Δαβίδ της Εύβοιας, από τον Άγιο Ιάκωβο Τσαλίκη (+1991), την Πεντηκοστή.

Ολα ήταν έτοιμα και από το Σάββατο είχαν έλθει ο ανάδοχος και ο υποψήφιος προς Bάπτιση. Την Κυριακή και κατά την ώρα της Θείας Λειτουργίας, μπαίνει ο ανάδοχος στο Ιερό την ώρα που λειτουργούσε ο Άγιος Ιάκωβος Τσαλίκης και του λέει ότι ο υποψήφιος για τη Βάπτιση , ο οποίος παρακαλούσε πολύ καιρό για να βαπτισθεί, πήρε την απόφαση να μη βαπτισθεί και έφυγε, φεύγει για τον Βόλο.

“Μη στενοχωρείσαι, παιδί μου”, του λέει ο Άγιος Ιάκωβος Τσαλίκης, “σε 20 λεπτά, θα είναι εδώ”.

Ο άνθρωπος , είχε φτάσει στον Αγιόκαμπο και είχε βγάλει εισιτήριο για να περάσει απέναντι και την ώρα που ετοιμαζόταν να μπει στο καράβι κάτω από την δύναμη της προσευχής του Αγίου Ιακώβου Τσαλίκη και από την Χάρη του Θεού, πράγματι, γύρισε πίσω σε 20 λεπτά με σφοδρή την επιθυμία να βαπτισθεί.

Η απόσταση από τον Αγιόκαμπο στο Μοναστήρι είναι τουλάχιστον πενήντα λεπτά αλλά αυτός χωρίς να τρέχει (και με 200 να πηγαίνεις είναι αδύνατο να φτάσεις σε 20 λεπτά) έφτασε σε 20 λεπτά στο Μοναστήρι.

Εγινε η βάπτιση και έλαμπε ολόκληρος και το παρεκκλήσι του Αγίου Χαραλάμπη —γιατί εκεί έγινε η βάπτιση—, ευωδίαζε επί μία εβδομάδα.



Lance Goldsberry, USA: Why I Became Orthodox – A Personal Story & Testimony


Lance Goldsberry, USA:

 Why I Became Orthodox – A Personal Story & Testimony

From Roman Catholicism to Orthodoxy



On January 31st, 2010, one day after my 50th birthday, I was received into the Holy Orthodox Catholic Church of the East at St. Mary’s Greek Orthodox Church in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

I became Orthodox Christian after 20 years journey of studying Orthodoxy. I was raised Roman Catholic, and went to parochial school for 12 years. I am grateful for my Roman Catholic upbringing; I learned who Jesus was, I believe I knew the Christ, but I did not always follow Him in my life.

After wasting a few years in adolescence and young adulthood smoking marijuanna and living a generally aimless life, I had a “born again” experience through the Catholic Charismatic movement. It was real in the sense that I repented of my sins and re-directed my life to Christ, and gave up drinking and drug use.

Shortly thereafter, I began attending independent charismatic churches, and left the Catholic faith. The churches I went to were very fundamentalistic. I got burned out after spending a few years in one fellowship in particular, where the leadership of untrained ”elders” exercised a very authoritarian and spiritually abusive kind of authority. After a failed marriage, I tried a number of Continue reading “Lance Goldsberry, USA: Why I Became Orthodox – A Personal Story & Testimony”

Letter To A Roman Catholic Friend – Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA


Letter To A Roman Catholic Friend

Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA



Can one be Roman Catholic and Orthodox? I would like to share with you a brief letter that was published some time ago in an Italian Orthodox parish newsletter. Its author, Archpriest Gregorio Cognetti, is the Dean of the Italian parishes under the Moscow Patriarchate. This letter was generally liked by the Italian Orthodox converts, and also received a high degree of appreciation among some cradle-born Orthodox (it was, for instance, translated into Romanian); I hope it may be prove an interesting reading and a source of inspiration for all of you.


Chapel Hill (U.S.), March 1982

Dear Bill,

Even though you never asked it directly, I feel from your words that you do not yet understand why I left the Roman Church to become Orthodox.

You were even a member of one of the least latinized Byzantine parishes, you seem to say, why, then?…

I guess I owe you an explanation, since, a long time ago, when we were both members of the Latin church, we shared the same feelings. These same feelings brought both of us to a Byzantine rite parish, and then myself to Orthodoxy. You could not have forgotten the criticisms that we moved to the Romans: the continual insertion of new traditions in place of the old ones, Scholasticism, the legalistic approach to spiritual life, the dogma of papal infallibility. At the same time we both reckoned the legitimacy and correctness of the Orthodox Church. A Uniate parish seemed the optimal solution. I Continue reading “Letter To A Roman Catholic Friend – Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA”

Ο κεκοιμημένος Ιεραπόστολος παπα-Κοσμάς Γρηγοριάτης του Κονγκό (+1989) οδηγεί με θαυμαστό τρόπο μία Αφρικανή από τον Ρωμαιοκαθολικισμό στην Ορθοδοξία


Η Ορθοδοξία στην Αφρική

Ο κεκοιμημένος Ιεραπόστολος παπα-Κοσμάς Γρηγοριάτης του Κονγκό (+1989) οδηγεί με θαυμαστό τρόπο μία Αφρικανή από τον Ρωμαιοκαθολικισμό στην Ορθοδοξία

Διηγείται ο Μοναχός Δαμασκηνός Γρηγοριάτης ένα περιστατικό επιστροφής από τον Ρωμαιοκαθολικισμού στην Ορθοδοξία, μετά από θαυματουργική εμφάνιση του κεκοιμημένου Μαρτυρικού Ιεραποστόλου του Κονγκό παπα-Κοσμά Γρηγοριάτη (+1989):

«Τον Μάιο του 1999, κάποια Κυριακή, ήρθε στην εκκλησία μας μία άγνωστη κοπέλα. Μετά τη Θεία Λειτουργία η μοναχή Θέκλα μού είπε να μιλήσω μαζί της. Την ρώτησα τι θέλει και μού είπε:

—Ζητώ να με χρίσετε.

—Γιατί, δεν σέ έχουν χρίσει, όταν βαπτίστηκες;

—Πάτερ, εγώ ήμουν πνευματικό παιδί του παπα-Κοσμά. Ἐκείνος με βάπτισε, λίγα χρόνια πριν απ᾽ το θάνατό του. Παρασύρθηκα όμως από πλάνες που διαδίδονται ότι η Ορθόδοξη Εκκλησία είναι τό ίδιο με την Ρωμαιοκαθολική και επέστρεψα στους Ρωμαιοκαθολικούς. Εδώ και ένα μήνα είδα τον παπα-Κοσμά στον ύπνο μου δύο φορές και με παράπονο με μάλωσε λέγοντας: “Γιατί εγκατέλειψες την Εκκλησία μας; Εγώ δεν σε δίδαξα, δεν σε κατήχησα; Γρήγορα να πας στην Ιεραποστολή και να ζητήσεις να χριστείς και ν᾽ αφήσεις για πάντα τις άλλες ‘Εκκλησίες'”.

Την συμβούλεψα να συναντηθεί με τον π. Μελέτιο, για να κρίνει εκείνος πότε θα τις δώσει το Ιερό Χρίσμα».

Από το βιβλίο: Μοναχός Δαμασκηνός Γρηγοριάτης, Ἕνας Ἄγγελος στήν Λαβωμένη Γῆ, ἐκδ. Ἱεραποστολικός Σύνδεσμος “Ἅγ. Κοσμᾶς ὁ Αἰτωλός”, Θεσ/νίκη 2018

Cenni di storia dell’ortodossia dell’archimandrita Padre Placide Deseille, Francia ╰⊰¸¸.•¨* Italian


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Cenni di storia dell’ortodossia dell’archimandrita

Padre Placide Deseille, Francia

La Chiesa indivisa del primo millennio

I primi tre secoli della Chiesa sono stati contrassegnati da fatti importanti: la notevole espansione del cristianesimo nell’Impero romano, e la feroce persecuzione dei cristiani in determinati periodi, fino alla convenzione di Milano (313) con cui l’imperatore Costantino il Grande concedeva libertà di culto ai seguaci di Cristo.

Gli apostoli e i loro primi successori fondarono molte chiese nelle città principali dell’Impero romano. In ogni città c’era una comunità cristiana di base, presieduta da un vescovo che, nominato originariamente dagli apostoli, era aiutato da presbiteri e diaconi. Questo tipo di organizzazione dal triplo ministero già verso la fine del I secolo era ben consolidato; è quanto appare con chiarezza già dagli Atti degli Apostoli e se ne fa menzione nelle lettere scritte tra 95 e 98 da san Clemente vescovo di Roma e verso il 107 da Sant’Ignazio, vescovo di Antiochia, mentre si recava a Roma dove sarebbe statomartirizzato. Sant’Ignazio fu il primo ad esprimere chiaramente che la comunità cristiana locale è Chiesa, idea che rimane il cuore della concezione ortodossa.

La preoccupazione principale dei cristiani, durante questo primo periodo, era innanzitutto la celebrazione della fede e la testimonianza di questa fede in un ambiente sovente ostile.

I primi discorsi esplicativi della fede cristiana sono stati scritti a partire dal II secolo – sono quelli di Ireneo di Lione, di Giustino, di Clemente di Alessandria, di Origene, di Tertulliano, scritti spesso per necessità di spiegare la fede di fronte al paganesimo e ai filosofi ellenisti all’esterno della Chiesa, e di precisarla di fronte agli insegnamenti erronei che la minacciavano dall’interno. Ma dopo la decisione rivoluzionaria nei confronti del cristianesimo da parte dell’Imperatore Costantino, nell’anno 313, le grandi controversie dottrinali hanno scosso e per secoli la Chiesa. Come notato, accennando alle principali dottrine elaborate dai sette Concili ecumenici, la Chiesa ha conservato “la vera fede” ponendo e difendendo i dogmi necessari alla fede. Ciò però è avvenuto non senza problemi, perché certe parti della Chiesa non hanno accettato tutte le decisioni dei Concili.

La prima frattura importante della Chiesa è avvenuta tra il IV e il V secolo, a seguito delle controversie cristologiche. La Chiesa di Persia divenne nestoriana e fu rotta la comunione tra le Chiese “calcedonesi” (Roma e Costantinopoli) – che accettarono le decisioni del Concilio di Calcedonia nel Continue reading “Cenni di storia dell’ortodossia dell’archimandrita Padre Placide Deseille, Francia ╰⊰¸¸.•¨* Italian”

Ο Μαρτυρικός Ιεραπόστολος του Κονγκό παπα-Κοσμάς Ασλανίδης ο Γρηγοριάτης-Αγιορείτης (+1989) και ένας δαιμονισμένος Ρωμαιοκαθολικός Αφρικανός


Ο Μαρτυρικός Ιεραπόστολος του Κονγκό

παπα-Κοσμάς Ασλανίδης ο Γρηγοριάτης-Αγιορείτης (+1989)

και ένας δαιμονισμένος Ρωμαιοκαθολικός Αφρικανός

Μαρτυρία π. Ἰακώβου Μπάντζα, Κονγκό:

«Μία μέρα ἐπισκέφθηκαν τόν παπα-Κοσμᾶ Γρηγοριάτη ἕνα ἀνδρόγυνο μέ τό παιδί τους, ἡλικίας δεκαεπτά ἐτῶν, πού τό εἶχαν κυριεύσει τά δαιμόνια λόγω τῆς ἐνασχολήσεώς του μέ τήν μαγεία. Ἦταν, νομίζω, τό ἔτος 1986.

—Τί θέλετε;, τούς ρώτησε.

—Θέλουμε νά θεραπεύσης τό παιδί μας. Εἶναι ἄρρωστο ἀπό μαγικά.

—Σέ ποιά ἐκκλησία ἀνήκετε;

—Στή Ρωμαιοκαθολική.

—Ἐκεῖ νά πᾶτε, στό δικό σας ἱερέα νά σᾶς θεραπεύση τό παιδί.

Ἐκεῖνοι πράγματι πῆγαν στόν Ρωμαιοκαθολικό ἱερέα. Τόν ἐνημέρωσαν γιά τό πρόβλημά τους καί ζήτησαν τήν βοήθειά του. Πρίν ἀκόμη ἐκεῖνος θελήση νά διαβάση τίς δικές του εὐχές, μίλησε τό δαιμόνιο ἀπ᾽ τό στόμα τοῦ παιδιοῦ τους καί εἶπε στόν Ρωμαιοκαθολικό ἱερέα: “Ποιός εἶσαι ἐσύ, βρέ καπουτσίνε, πού εχεις τέτοια δύναμι νά μέ βγάλης ἀπό ἐδῶ πού εἶμαι;”.
Καί ἀμέσως τό δαιμόνιο βγαίνει ἀπ᾽ τό παιδί καί μπαίνει στόν Ρωμαιοκαθολικό ἱερέα, μπροστά στά μάτια τῶν γονέων του. Καί ὁ ἱερέας δαιμονίσθηκε!».