Romanian Orthodox for Enquiry in America

Guardians of the Vatra

Orthodox Brotherhood Documents

ROAA/BOR Documents


Author: Alex. Nemoianu
September 1, 2009
The process of negotiating is as old as human history. Men have always negotiated in order to promote their own interests and, sometimes, the common interest. However, after all trappings were removed, the aim of this process was to obtain a better deal, and secure better conditions for the future.

Such negotiations are, right now, in progress between a team representing or, anyhow, supposed to be representing the vital interests of the Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America (”Vatra”) and a team representing the canonical contraption brought into existence by the Romanian communists in the 1950s, the so called “Missionary Archdiocese”. Both parts form the “Joint Dialogue Commission”. The scope of this note is not to debate the achievements of that Commission, or, in my opinion, lack thereof, but to point out a few rules that should be followed when negotiating.A negotiating team’s first and only priority should be to forward the interests of the community or entity it represents. That is its single reason for existing. The members of a negotiating team should never enter into “personal” relations with the members of the opposing team. The existence of such a relationship should be reason for immediate termination as being, in form and spirit, a conflict of interest. In addition, it should be remembered that the members of a negotiating team are under permanent scrutiny from the handlers of the opposite team who might even make a psychological profile. Such a psychological profile is aimed at capturing the character of the members of the negotiating team and especially their weaknesses. We should be under no illusions. All men have weaknesses and all men have a breaking point. Beyond that point they can be manipulated and influenced. In order to avoid this pattern, when negotiations drag on for a long time, and when they reach an impasse that negatively influence the very unity of the entity, the members of a team should be replaced and new blood should be injected. The negotiating team is a means and not an end.

Especially when negotiating with former communists or their offspring, one should remember what President Ronald Reagan so aptly said: “Trust,but verify!”
Unfortunately , these rules are being ignored and the present difficulties are the direct result .

Alexandru Nemoianu

2 Comments to ““TRUST, BUT VERIFY!””

  1. Anonymous Says:

    The interesting thing about these negotiations is that this appointed Dialogue Commission group is “negotiating” something that it has no mandate to negociate – our leaving the OCA! Our Constitution and By-Laws do not make reference to our leaving the OCA. In addition, Archbishop Valerian’s 1984 letter, found on this website, says that our Episcopate’s move into the OCA is “irreversible”. This has been the position, is the position, and hopefully, will remain the position of our Episcopate. Why is this group of people trying to lure us away from that which is ours, in the OCA? Why?

  2. Un prieten Says:

    Bravo Dl. Nemoianu cand spuneti, “Echipa de negociere nu este un scop, ea este un mijloc.” Deci, este important sa cunoastem ce motiveaza acest grup, aceste negocieri.
    Numai atunci putem sa ne dam seama de ce se face in numele nostru.

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