Philip Saliba, the heavy handed, multimillionaire, tyrannical leader of the Antiochian Orthodox Church in America is dead.
'It is appointed unto man once to die and after this the judgment .'
On a trip to California not long ago, I happened to stay in a hotel right next to where the Antiochian Diocese of California was meeting. There were men in black everywhere. I had the opportunity to talk with a few priests. One, in particular, had recognized me from my blog. It was the first time I realized the reach of the JTO blog. This priest was aware of my prior posts concerning his Metropolitan Philip Saliba--Issues of secrecy, greed, papist attitudes, heresy, apostasy, and the like. I was astonished to find that this priest needed no convincing as to the character of His Metropolitan nor of the drifting into apostasy of the Antioch Diocese and all of World Orthodoxy. The priest, in hushed tones, told me, "We know. We know all of these things. It is just not time yet." He was referencing a time when he and others would leave to find a faithful bishop or stay and stand up in mass dissent like the saints of old, caring more about the cause of Christ than the security of their position.
To the Antiochian priest and to all those in the Antiochian diocese: The tyrant is dead. Is it time yet?
WATCH: There will be a great struggle for power as some Arab factions will go to desperate means to keep control of the Antiochian diocese in foreign, in particular, Arab hands. Council will fight council. Those near Saliba, his associates, are already making efforts to hide records and evidence of Saliba's personal fortune, and other records that others had previously demanded to see. The associates will only be partially successful. Several smoking guns will be revealed. The revelation of certain documents will be the catalyst for a revival of spirit in the American Church and a weaning from foreign control. Priests will leave- Priests will stay- but turmoil will be the word within the Antiochian Diocese. What Saliba sowed in his life, the Diocese will now reap in his death. And those clergy who cared more about the security of their positions will now be shaken.