What is the official position of the Orthodox Church on clergy ordained through a “mail-order” or “on-line” ministry? I am considering becoming a member of the clergy. While there are no Orthodox churches in the immediate area, a local pastor suggested that I obtain ordination in this way but, from what I understand, clergy ordained in this way aren’t taken seriously or awarded much respect. I am curious as to the Church’s stance on this. I could always take the traditional route (with a little more education) but am also looking at the alternatives.
Such “ordinations” are not recognized as ordinations in any way, shape or form by the Orthodox Church. In fact, I would dare say that such “ordinations” are sheer blasphemy and a mockery of the Holy Sacrament of Ordination. Assuming that you are of the Orthodox faith, I would strongly advise that you speak with your Father Confessor before making any decisions whatsoever about entering the priesthood and not to take the advice of anyone who would suggest that you pursue “mail-order” or “on-line” ordination. In Orthodox Christianity, the “traditional route” is, in my opinion, the “only route.” There are no “alternatives” or “short cuts,” as becoming a member of the clergy involves a serious commitment to God and His People.