Fr Hans Jacobse Speaks on Mentoring Young Men at the 2018 Touchstone Patriarchy Conference

The following talk was given at the 2018 Touchstone Conference on “Patriarchy: Fatherhood and the Restoration of Culture” which drew together speakers from various traditions and disciplines to discuss how the assault on patriarchy is affecting culture.

Below Fr. Hans Jacobse shares his experiences in dealing with young men growing up under these assaults and what is necessary to restore them so that they can flourish.

The conference was sponsored by Touchstone Magazine. See videos of all speakers here.

Conference participants included: Rachel Fulton Brown, J. Budziszewski, Allan C. Carlson, Anthony Esolen, Steven Faulkner, Robert P. George, S. M. Hutchens, Hans Jacobse, Patrick McCaskey, Nancy Pearcey, Leon J. Podles, Patrick Henry Reardon, Glenn Stanton, C. R. Wiley

Click to view video


  1. Notice how all those ‘conservatives’ hang out together and don’t seem to invite anyone into their midst who is not congruent with them? Where has dialogue gone? Is it dead?

    • Where do you see who was invited or who wasn’t?

      Not saying you are wrong; it is very possible they wanted to talk about one thing from a specific angle, and not have disagreements, but I just don’t happen to see evidence of who was invited and who wasn’t. It is possible others were invited and declined the invite.

    • jim,

      Yes, dialogue is dead. The True Right has written off the Left and Center entirely. They have nothing to offer but repentance.

      Now, what you see above is not really “conservatives” except perhaps by 21st century American and Western European standards. Patriarchy was largely assumed everywhere before the 1960’s.

      The fundamental problem is nothing that priests or laity can do anything about. The problem is the law. It outlaws the patriarchy. There is no way around that fact. Without the right to coercion, patriarchy means nothing. Otherwise there is always a referee who favors the woman. That’s feminism. In that environment, it is better not to settle down and reproduce because you are simply enabling and exacerbating the problem.

      Frankly, Rome was patriarchal before Christianity came to it, as were the Greek lands. This is a novel problem. It is better if this society dies and is replaced by some different political regime. It is working hard to self destruct insofar as feminism is a death knell to the fertility rate.

      All is going according to God’s plan. Not to worry. The Lord of Hosts will handle it all, albeit with a heavy hand. Eventually, we will be a Latin country and the patriarchy may revive since it is so prominent in Latin culture.

      So what to tell young men?

      “Make lots of money. Women are hypergamous. Moreover, get a prenup before marriage. It can’t affect child support but it affects everything else. Find a pious, Orthodox woman to marry, if you dare. She needs to acknowledge before the marriage that your duty is to love and support her and her duty is to obey and submit to you.”

      Or, as St. Paul exhorted, remain single if you can do so. But this is not a patriarchy and nothing any of us can do – short of true revolution – can change it back into one. The other obvious answer is to leave this evil country like Lot left his home.

      Man is not obligated to fight evil constantly and root it out. It is more beneficial to seek holiness and let the demons spin their wheels. God can handle the demons. Demographic Winter, below replacement birthrates, are His way of signaling His displeasure and indicating that His patience will expire.

      • George Michalopulos says

        Misha, you are wrong about Latin American countries. I too once bought into the myth a Hispanic machismo. Little did I know that homosexual “marriage” was already legalized in Argentina and Mexico before the Supremes undemocratically forced it down our throats

        • Machismo may be on the surface in Latin countries, but much deeper in Latin culture is the “Marianismo” — the female matriarch runs things.

          Sexual abuse (often fathers/uncles/cousins sexually abusing both the boy and girl children in families) is far too common in Latin cultures. The women matriarchs who go by the “Marianismo” way of things don’t want it talked about and dealt with, because they think that would bring shame on the family. So “let the children suffer so we are not shamed” — so brave, right?

          So the sexual abuse continues generation after generation (the Biblical truism of “unto the 4th generation” exists for a reason — family dysfunction/abuse passes from generation to generation unless it gets treated and stopped in its tracks).

          Deal with the shame, talk about it, let it see light. Don’t let children suffer, and don’t let families live shame-based.

          Brené Brown is awesome at addressing how shame (whether it’s from sexual abuse, addictions, porn, body image, whatever) can’t survive being talked about. She’s right. Same for the masturbation addiction that Fr Hans addresses in his talk. Talk about the shame, connect, deal with it, grow, and the shame goes away, as do the problems it causes.

          • I don’t know if I agree fully with all these things, but family shame is precisely the reason sexual crimes are swept under the rug by families. And the ultimate shame is the rug sweep.

            What men do in their own rooms isn’t necessarily related to simple addiction or porn. In classic Jacobse style; this, too, is oversimplified.

    • John Sakelaris says

      Well, jimofolym, dialogue is all around you; you just have to use it instead of complaining. One obvious example is this blog itself. Sure, it is run by a conservative, and most of us on here are conservatives in one degree or another–but all kinds of comments can get published here, including yours.

      You want to post criticisms of patriarchy and to tell of how sisterhood is powerful? Go ahead.

      Maybe you fear that others on here might have too many facts to marshal against you.

    • “Where has dialogue gone? ”

      Its been seen for what it is:

      Summation(though everyone really should put in the effort to understand Fish’s thesis): sitting down at the liberal round table leads directly to…more liberalism.

    • You should talk to Rod Dreier about what Prog/Libs mean by dialogue. When they are willing to have rational and logical discussions it will happen. Until then it’s just best to ignore them.

  2. Yes

    • George Michalopulos says

      Maybe it’s because leftists can’t/won’t argue in good faith? What good would come out of people talking last each other?

  3. VirginiaDean says

    What does that mean or have to do with this subject ? That they needed speakers telling them that crooked Hillary should have been president and that the men should call themselves Cisgender? This is a real topic, not a chance to debate fake social justice nonsense.

  4. A voice in the wilderness! says

    Sex addiction, masturbation addiction, and pornography use are rampant in American/Western culture, particularly among young men, when the hormones are at the highest. There are few to no more mature men guiding our young men as to how to manage these hormones, what to do with them, how to manage their sexual gift, or how to use their sexuality as God intended.

    We are indeed back to pagan times, when men’s lusts drive much of their lives. Our cultural consciousness now tells us that if one is not having a “healthy sexual life” (whatever that means), then one must not be fully living. Young women are drawn into the game often as little more than concubines to satisfy young men’s sexual lusts, and they go along with it much of the time out of their own need for connection and belonging.

    Fr Hans is filling a much-needed hole in our Church life, in trying to guide young men, to tell them that God intends for men to control their lusts, to not let their lusts control them. God gives us a sexual gift to use in a certain way. Abstinence from sexuality outside of marriage is not only possible, it is what God intends for us, and it brings joy and life. However, to listen to our culture, abstinence outside of marriage brings misery, yet we know that they don’t know what they are talking about. God would not give us something to do if it were not good for us and also indeed possible (despite what our culture tells us, and also, sadly, what some in the Church tell us (is Sister Vassa listening?)).

    Fr Hans is like a voice crying in the wilderness on this topic.

    Tragically, too often our Church leaders are afraid of discussing sex, masturbation addiction, pornography addiction, etc., because of their own discomfort with the topic or because of some misplaced Victorian-era sensibilities that no longer exist in our times. The Christian approach to sex is not the Victorian response of never talking about it. Parents, church leaders, and more mature Christians have a duty and responsibility to teach those younger how to use their sexual gifts in the appropriate way.

    Children are being introduced to pornography at younger and younger ages every year — it’s not secret that porn is as close as a swipe or a touch on one’s smart phone. One priest I knew used to say “Oh, I just hate and ignore the internet and e-mail” and refuses to deal with the problem, pretending to live as if it is the 1950s — this course of action is unacceptable and is not an option.

    Fr Hans is the man! for stepping up to the plate on this topic. I would like to see him develop a nationwide network of healthy, mature Christian Orthodox men who can reach out to young men who need help and guidance and who are suffering with sex addiction, masturbation addiction, and porn addiction — to help guide them toward how Christ intends for us to use our sexual gift. Sexual purity is indeed possible, and in it one finds the fullness of life.

  5. Fr Han’s has come to the same conclusion as Rod Dreher (i.e. Benedict Option) and many other traditional Christians: the direction of western civilization and its culture can not be turned or significantly influenced by political or cultural means. What is at root a religious problem, can only be solved at that level – a religious repentance by some (but not all) whom it has been given to see the dilemma.

    If you, or your family, or your church (Orthodoxy is not exempt) want to be Christian in any real sense, then you must proactively work on a religious level – an ascetical level. Any effort (personal, familial, Church) that has some kind of significant reliance on politics or cultural – in some way “reforming” or “fixing” them – is a vanity.

    The first step is to examine your own thoughts and assumptions. Do you tend to think primarily in political or cultural terms? Do you frame yourself, your family, and your Church in political/cultural categories? Do you think of Man (Anthropos) as a “political animal”?

    • Lon Gerakos says

      Rod Dreher’s Benedict option makes a lot of sence. We should build Hassidic villages where the elderly and monastics can be gainfully employed raising the kids while their folks telecommute. Just get certification in Mathworks, Wolfram, COMSOL, Revit, Coade, Primavera and Spice, then work from your farm on Fiverr, Freelancer, Outsourcely, Workhoppers, Freeeup, Odesk or Upwork. Putin should do this, too, instead of letting egoist mommas give up their kids to orphanages for the slightest imperfections

  6. Tim R. Mortiss says

    One way to support “patriarchy” is to become a patriarch. This I did (and not as an ecclesiarch) by having a wife, three daughters, two sons, a daughter-in-law, two sons-in-law, seven granddaughters, five grandsons, a grandson-in-law (and another in the wings).

    This I find is the best method.

    • I suppose one needs to get first to the question of what constitutes “patriarchy”. It is, by definition, “the rule (in society) of the fathers”; i.e., men. It is intrinsically composed (not intertwined) of physical and spiritual power inside the family. Without this power, it does not exist, by definition.

      Being a father may be nice, but it is possible in a feminist matriarchy just as easily as in a patriarchy. Patriarchy is, by virtue of the “arche” part of the root, political. It can’t be any other way. So all you steer the discussion away from politics and political will are not being honest and deluding us into thinking with some type of personal or family “spiritual work” we can make inroads.

      That is false, unless the inroads are geared to changing the law, which is the true source of “arche”, patrial or otherwise. All else is a mirage, snake oil to come the children down.

      • Tim R. Mortiss says

        To me, it’s mostly just a question of doing something about things, rather than only talking about them.

        Like, for another instance, marriage and the proper relationships between men and women.