Is the GOA a Religious Marxist Front Group?

OK, now that I’ve got your attention, I can dial my critique back a bit. But only a bit.

You see, if I didn’t know any better, I’d say that Archbishop Elpidophoros Lambrianides is either a subversive Deep-stater or someone who is completely clueless about America –at least of fly-over country anyway.

First he threw the priests of the GOA under the bus when he told them last year that the saving of their pension fund was job number one. Instead, he doubled down with his Archon buddies and scraped the $40 million that was necessary to restart the boondoggle known as the St Nicholas Shrine.

Then he undertook his ill-advised march alongside BLM protesters back in June, during the height of the Floyd Festivities. The second coming of Selma it was not. Even if we give half a point to BLM in its original iteration, that is to say an organization dedicated to highlighting the awareness of supposed police brutality, it’s pretty much pissed it all away in the past few weeks. According to most polling firms, the entire concept of BLM is now distrusted by pluralities of all non-black demographics in the United States. (And it’s not much better among African-Americans, who recognize a racket when they see one.)

That’s two strikes in case you were wondering.

Last night, His Eminence came out swinging –and missing yet again–when he put out this unctuous tweet to the late Ruth Bader Ginsburg, also known as Notorious RBG.

Now, as a Christian, I give my condolences to the late Associate Justice. I lost my own beloved grandmother to pancreatic cancer and I grieve for anybody who exits this life due to this disease. Her family and friends likewise have my deepest sympathies.

But it would be hypocritical of me to lionize her as some “icon” and “role model”. And I’m not saying this because her views and mine did not line up. Yes, she was a brilliant legal mind, of this there can be no doubt. But you know who else was equally brilliant? Antonin Scalia and I don’t remember the GOA singing his praises upon his death. Nor do I expect to see encomiums delivered when Clarence Thomas passes, and he (in the opinion of many), is an even more iconic figure than Ginsburg.

Let’s get down to brass tacks, shall we? Ginsburg was a one-woman wrecking ball to the concept of American normalcy. Her championship of “women’s rights” (read: killing babies in the womb) has done more damage to the stability of our culture than almost anything else one can think of. Perhaps not as bad as Roe v Wade, but awful damn close. Since then, it’s all been downhill. Obergefell springs instantly to mind.

Equally as bad was her contrariness regarding the Second Amendment. Simply put, one cannot be lionized as a “champion of individual rights” if he (or she) cannot understand the plain verbiage of the Second Amendment and realize that it is an individual right, not a collective one. Period. Full stop.

Now, I could go on and wax eloquently about the virtues that are needed to sustain a republic. As far as Aristotle was concerned, courage was the first virtue; all other virtues could not be maintained if a man (or polity) lacked courage. Arms are those hopla (tools) which every courageous man owns and knows how to use. Think of them as force-multipliers.

Our East Coast elites don’t understand that. Come to think of it, they don’t understand a lot of things about Americana and that’s troubling. There are always two sides to every story and the reason that Trump was elected is because the elites live in an insular bubble that makes Versailles under the Sun King look like a garden of biodiversity. 

As an Orthodox Christian, I’m particularly troubled to see that the “Archbishop of America” doesn’t understand that.

To soften the blow of (yet again) another non-American being placed on the primatial throne of the GOA, we were told that the young John Lambrianides, while growing up in Istanbul, “loved America”, its culture, the very idea of it. I don’t dispute that. However, I do question what exactly about “America” did he love? It’s one thing to love The Beach Boys and baseball, it’s quite another to love the soul-destroying rulings put out by the Supreme Court or the anti-Christian “education” that has been peddled by our finest universities over the past few decades.

Does His Eminence understand the insanity of the historically-ignorant of the 1619 Project? Is he OK with the destruction of American statues, including statues of Jesus, the Blessed Virgin and St Junipero Serra? Or the fire-bombing of buildings in our inner cities? How is this beneficial or indicative of anything positive?

Now, I’m not blaming Ginsburg for any of this. Nor am I blaming His Eminence. That would be silly. However, I’ve begun to question the Archbishop’s vision of America, first with the BLM march, now with this tweet. Ginsburg was an an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States of America. She deserves recognition for that alone. As mentioned, she was also an excellent legal mind, of that there can be no doubt. Yet her expertise was put in the service of an ideology that was neither Christian or traditional. For an Orthodox primate to slather her with encomiums that would be befitting the passing of an anointed Orthodox monarch, is most unsettling.

This goes far beyond normal Byzantine sycophancy; it telegraphs clearly which side of the culture war he –and by extension the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America–is on.  If he loved America so much, why is he on the side of those who want to burn it down or civil magistrates who have consistently undermined the Constitution?

Clearly, he does not understand the give-and-take of free and open American criticism. It came to our attention that several of our friends responded to his latest ill-considered tweet. The good archbishop couldn’t take good old-fashioned American criticism so, in typical phanariote fashion, he blocked them. I guess you can say that his understanding and love for America is somewhat deficient. But then again, what could we expect from a patriarchate which is headquartered in some mythical city called “the New Rome”?   


  1. Ginsburg more than anyone embodied what Jesus meant when he called a certain people “the synagogue of Satan”. Everything she rubber stamped through was designed to subvert anything good and true and healthy. Likewise with a potential Harris presidency. That the archbishop supports this shows that he too is part of the synagogue of Satan, and that no EP bishop has pushed back shows that they are as well.

  2. Considering that ecumenism began within the Greek Church because of Freemason infiltration, one has to be wonder if the current Archbishop and those surrounding him are not “Trojan Horses” of some kind. The EP seems to be rotten to the core.

    • Speaking of “Trojan Horses”
      You may be familiar with the book by Konstantin Preobrazhensky;
      FSB’s New Trojan Horse: Americans of Russian Descent. It is must read for all Orthodox, in my opinion.
      While not under the GOA, I cannot help but to feel as though the external Church as a whole, has been utterly compromised at this point. Orthodoxy, as it appears to me, has simply been made to be yet another patch sewn onto the quilt of globalization.
      The earth transformed into a prison, ruled by tyrants and artificial intelligence.
      While the secular jihadist left is on the warpath to take complete control, I believe that system is falling apart, gasping for its final breaths, making way for the far more deceptive one.
      I believe the rotten fruits of ecumenism, the greatest heresy of our age, are about to emerge center stage.

      • Johann Sebastian says

        Is Preobrazhensky Orthodox or is he a closet Bolshevik hoping that his Russophobic conspiracy theories endear him to those who could potentially thwart the restoration of an Orthodox Russia?

      • “FSB’s New Trojan Horse: Americans of Russian Descent”

        Oh, scary, “The shocking truth about Russia’s spy network in the US and the brutal suppression of democracy in Russia… and how Putin has already shut down freedom of speech and free enterprise in Russia’s still-born democracy.”

        Straight out of Obama’s 2009. 

        Now the Kremlin’s hope is that the parishioners of R.O.C.O.R. could carry out the function of a fifth column, driven by nostalgic and religious feeling. And there are millions of them, all immigrants from Russia. –Novoe Russkoe Slovo, Russian Language Daily in New York”,_A._2011_p._80-

        “Of these, 232 parishes and 10 monasteries are in the United States; they have 92,000 declared adherents and over 9,000 regular church attendees.”

        It’s Over 9,000!

      • What an awful book.  Russia re-emerges as a Christian capitalist world power and some people are doing the Left’s bidding by trying to reignite the Cold War.  Preobrashensky is a wolf in sheep’s clothing.  He was loyal to the KGB until he left in 1991 and turned against his country, writing for the Moscow Times.  Totally in the pocket of Western globalist interests.
        It is paradoxical that the situation has turned so that the Russian Federation is now a champion of Christianity and capitalism and the United States exports soft socialism and atheistic morality as “human rights”.  But that is exactly what has happened.

        • George Michalopulos says

          Misha, I agree. I can attack his criticism of a resurgent, Christian Russia on many grounds (and will do so in due time).

          For me, the real knee-slapper was his assessment that Putin wants to “shut down…democracy”.

          All one has to do is look around at our burning cities, devastated lives, destroyed businesses, ruined careers and the threat of further Floyd-like festivities should POTUS replace Ginsburg, to realize that the Demsheviks have already done this in the good ole’ U S of A.

          Sigh. I well remember when we had freedom of speech and the rule of law here in America.

          • Yes, George.  The Dems control the media and that’s all they need to twist the law and institute the “cancel culture”.
            I’m trying to resist the impulse to compose a tome about this, but . . .
            Short version, Putin is a pragmatist regarding political power.  First, Russia is not America, there is a long history of regicidal intrigue and anyone at the top must keep his place by force.
            Second, Putin is aware of the modern media phenomenon.  Western democracies are in substantial part governed by their media who sway public opinion by what they choose to report, choose to omit and by the way they slant whatever the story is to fit their ideological paradigm.  One senior writer at Newsweek, in a rare moment of candor, admitted that this gives Democrats about 15 points in any given national election.
            Modern technology made this much easier.  You can hear the words of newscasters spoken and feel their emotion, all the non-verbal clues are present to indicate how you should perceive what they are saying.
            Putin occupies the field in Russian media because he has to in order to maintain power.  Sheep are sheep whether they speak Russian or English.  Somebody is going to shepherd them and he’d rather it not be the Western media.
            The freedom of our arrangement is but an illusion.  In reality, the fourth branch is perpetually dominated by the Left and there is only in the last couple of decades even a dissenting voice in the visual media (Fox, OAN, etc.).  Most people hear nothing but LeftSpeak when tuned into media, which many are for several hours each day.  It’s almost as efficient as state control.
            So your eyes should glaze over when you hear people say Russia is not free.  They could oust Putin if they were eager to do so in any given election.  No one is preventing them from coalescing around another leader and voting him in.  But Putin shepherds them through the media so he maintains a critical mass of support.  If he didn’t occupy the field with respect to the media, someone else would who would thereby saturate the public with some other perspective.  Nature abhors a vacuum.  There is no “free” with respect to media.  It is always controlled and manipulated by someone.
            And, truthfully, I can’t say it’s a terrible thing.  It’s the reason Nazis and Klansmen would have a hard time making a comeback.  Though it sounds, and is somewhat, Orwellian, the Overton window does need to be managed.  I would not assert that if we were still a pre-industrial, rural based society.  But the devil is in the cities.
            We just have the wrong people in charge of managing it.

            • cynthia curran says

              Make Carbon Capture cheaper and its the end of the left. Without the end of the world environmental noise the left is a dead movement.

    • Archpriest Alexander F. C. Webster says

      And there is also this oldie-but-goodie from 3 1/2 years ago:

      • Gail Sheppard says

        I remember this! It is a goodie.

      • George Michalopulos says

        I remember it well, Fr.

        Was it General Mark Clark who said: “poor bastards, they’ve got us surrounded”?

        • Archpriest Alexander F. C. Webster says

          No. That was Colonel Creighton Abrams at the Battle of the Bulge in WWII (in Gen. George Patton’s famed Third Army), later Chief of Staff of the U.S. Army in the early 1970s.

          I like this quip the most–by the renowned LTG Lewis “Chesty” Puller, USMC, when his Marines were surrounded by the Communist Chinese at the Chosin Reservoir during the Korean War:

          “All right. They’re on our left, they’re on our right, they’re in front of us, they’re behind us . . . . They can’t get away this time.”

        • I understand the original was a riff on McAuliffe’s reply of “Nuts” to Von Luttwitz at Bastogne when he asked for the surrender of the Yanks in the Battle of the Bulge.
          Later, General Creighton Abrams apparently said: “They’ve got us surrounded again, the poor bastards”; but whether in WWII, Korea or Vietnam I do not know.

      • Here’s another Trojan Horse…
        I shudder to find out how this one plays out!

    • Tim R. Mortiss says

      Nicholas said:
      “Considering that ecumenism began within the Greek Church because of Freemason infiltration, one has to be wonder if the current Archbishop and those surrounding him are not “Trojan Horses” of some kind.”
      Of ‘some kind’ yes; in this case, little motorcycles and a calliope or two, perhaps.

  3. Thank you for this sober reflection, George,
    Let me suggest that Mark 14.4-5 may serve as the key to understanding the current American Left.

    • I would also argue, Fr. Patrick, that the Right has the same problem if they think in purely economic/capitalistic terms. As Christians we need to fight the heresy of modernity in all its forms. In my opinion, the Right and Left are just two sides of the same modern coin.

    • George Michalopulos says

      Thank you, Fr for your compliment.

    • Michael Bauman says

      Wisdom Father but too kind and Ben David has a point.

  4. Thanks for your compelling thoughts, George!
    Ginsburg saga aside, how have the clergy of the GOA responded to the fact that their pension fund is, well…still underfunded?! Stuff like this usually gets investigated. And, I repeat, usually gets investigated.

  5. Archpriest Alexander F. C. Webster says

    RE: “Ginsburg more than anyone embodied what Jesus meant when he called a certain people ‘the synagogue of Satan.'”

    Austin Martin, I had no respect for RBG’s radical, anti-Constitution jurisprudence, particularly her fierce devotion to the abomination of abortion. But I object strongly to your attempt here to resort to what has become an anti-Jewish trope (“synagogue of Satan”) to dismiss her and her heritage. 

    • George Michalopulos says

      Fr, from what I understand, the original Scriptural context for this phrase (Rev 2:9, 3:9), was not meant in an anti-Semtic fashion but in response to anti-Church persecutors, i.e. those who claimed to be Jews but were persecuting the Church (which is the true Israel).  

      Although you are correct that anti-Semites throughout the ages have used this phrase as an excuse to molest the post-Temple rabbinic remnant (which did not accept Jesus as the messiah), it could only do so from a position of Judaic superiority, that is to say that the Church was Israel and thus, those that persecuted them (such as the Temple hierarchy) was a false Judaism.  Hence Jesus’ own terminology that there would be “Jews who were not Jews”.  This would make sense (or so I believe) because the Apostle John believed that only the Church was the true Israel.

      In any event, I do believe that the late Justice Ginsburg was part of a demonic, anti-Christian political sect, one made up of all races and ethnicities, which has strived from the outset to undermine Christendom.  There is no doubt in my mind that Christian hierarchs from the various denominations are part of this same philosophical regime.    

    • If he had not used the indefinite article and just written:
      “Ginsburg more than anyone embodied what Jesus meant
      when he called certain people ‘the synagogue of Satan”,
      would you have agreed with the comment?

      • Archpriest Alexander F. C. Webster says

        I appreciate your effort, Brendan, to snatch this burning twig from the fire. However, the reference to “a certain people” or even “certain people,” as you might put it, still smacks of anti-Judaism and anti-Semitism.  The key word is “certain,” which I read as a veiled reference to Jews.

        Austin Martin did not need to invoke “synagogue of Satan” in any case, especially this one where the target of his ire was a well known Jewish woman. Sometimes our ill-chosen metaphors get the better of us.

        George M’s reply above provides a good historical context for that phrase. I also agree with him that RBG’s jurisprudence was, like that of many Demshevks in public office, decidedly anti-Christian and contemptuous of unborn children. No need to bring “synagogue” into that conversation.

        • Fr Alexander: [T]he reference to “a certain people” or even “certain people,” as you might put it, still smacks of anti-Judaism and anti-Semitism. The key word is “certain,” which I read as a veiled reference to Jews.
          I disagree, as follows:

          Austin  Martin (1): ‘Jesus…called a certain people “the synagogue of Satan”…[T]he archbishoptoo is part of the synagogue of Satan, andEP bishop[s]are as well.’
          Is Elpidophorus Jewish? Or Judaic? Or Semitic? Are the other EP bishops in America? And who (in this context) is ‘a certain people’ ? The whole piece is confused and the confusion centres on the indefinite article.

          Let us remove it and see what happens:
          Austin  Martin (2): ‘Jesus…called…certain people “the synagogue of Satan”…[T]he archbishoptoo is part of the synagogue of Satan, andEP bishop[s]are as well.’
          Is this anti-Jewish, anti-Semitic or anti-Greek? Anti-Judaic or anti-Christian?
          Or is it just anti-certain people (including some Jews and some Greek bishops)?
          Closer reading, I find, often leads to fewer knee-jerk reactions.

          • Archpriest Alexander F. C. Webster says

            Brendan, you still miss the larger point, while parsing definite and indefinite articles. Why traffic in such terms as “synagogue of Satan,” given that term’s association in recent times with blatant anti-Semitism? Are there no other, more direct, and less dubious metaphors?

            • No, Fr Alexander. When I read Austin Mitchell’s piece (the whole piece) it never occurred to me that he was invoking a blatantly anti-Semitic term. It seemed to me that he was extending a biblical term (‘Synagogue of Satan’; here signifying ‘traffickers in lies’) to charge Elpidophorus and other American EP bishops as being equally traffickers in lies – which very extension to (mostly, if not all, I presume) non-Semitic bishops completely precludes any valid charge of anti-Semitism. [NB: Whether or not the ‘trafficking in lies’ charge is true is not here addressed by me.]
              What I did not do was read this particular biblical term in the light of its “association in recent times with blatant anti-Semitism” – and become offended thereby. I am not Lady Bracknell. If I were to strike such biblical language from my vocabulary because assorted miscreants have misused it, my metaphors would become impoverished and my big house bible would be covered with acres of big red scorings-out. I am not prepared to go down that road.

              • Sorry: “Austen Martin’s piece”.
                Austin Mitchell is a former UK Labour politician;
                and tv journalist/personality – and funny with it.

              • Archpriest Alexander F. C. Webster says

                For the last time, Brendan, what prompted my objection was this particular sentence: “Ginsburg more than anyone embodied what Jesus meant when he called a certain people ‘the synagogue of Satan.’”
                Any reasonable person acquainted with modern anti-Semitism might, as I did, cringe at such an unhappy choice of words, whether intentional or otherwise, especially when Mr. Mitchell adds in reference to the late Justice Goldberg, “more than anyone.”

                The phrase “synagogue of Satan” is indeed biblical and patristic. But the direct association of it to the late Justice Goldberg, a Jewess, irrespective of Austin Mitchell’s hurling it as an epithet against some Orthodox bishops, is, at the very least, in poor taste and counter-productive. It has nothing to do with a personal “offense” to me or cherry-picking phrases or “knee-jerk reactions.” 

                You might try a little sensitivity yourself. It’s good for the soul.

                • ‘For the last time, Brendan … Any reasonable person acquainted with modern anti-Semitism might…cringe at such an unhappy choice of words, whether intentional or otherwise…’
                  In my opinion, a reasonable person might have read through the whole piece and (on discovering a certain confusion and eschewing emotion) asked for clarification of intent. But what do I know?
                  Anyway, it’s goodbye from me.

        • Father, what’s wrong with anti-Judaism?

          • What do you mean by “anti-Judaism”?
            St John Chrysostom wrote a rather lengthy piece of work titled, “Against the Judaizers.”  Is this what you are referring to?

    • Christopher McAvoy says

      The enemy of the Church has always been the Jews who asked for our Lord Jesus Christ to be crucified. Orthodox Church history bears this fact out quite clearly, even the hymns of Holy Church proclaim lamentations over the deceit of the jews and the sorrow of how they deny Christ. All those who deny Christ and in our myriad sins, we are in some sense spiritually jews as well. We must know our enemies in order to overcome them. If we do not know them, we will continue to be deceived by them.

      This fight we wage is a spiritual battle, it has nothing to do with race (which is a myth). It is a war of theology and culture. Of prayer to the Holy Trinity vs incantations to demons for spells. Good vs. Evil. I have had a life full of enriching urban multi-cultural experiences. One of my good friends is an agnostic jew. I applaud him for his merits and endorse where he is still legitimately good, but he is most definitely against the Church in his values and beliefs, time and time again. What we need is more calling out of the Jews and all those who persecute what is good and true. To create a charade of illusionary anti-semitic rhetoric only gives evil spirits more temptation to deceive and oppress us. 

      Dearest Fr. Alexander I have immense esteem and respect for and I beg his forgiveness for any offense, yet we all have shortcomings, sinners that we are. I have mine, he has his and may God’s mercy and humble spirit be upon us to not bicker over that which our Lord seeks for us to be drawn together over! Amen amen amen.

      In Russia and many nations most of the Orthodox are not afraid to be against the Jewish revolutionary spirit and this is to their benefit. A suggestion of anti-semitism or bigotry would be irrelevant and ridiculous. No other nation has an AIPAC. If the flying together of both the Israeli flag and the anti-fa flag doesnt tell you something is connected what will?

  6. George, I laughed out loud when I saw the headline.  Thanks.
    A communist is just a liberal in a hurry.  People who measure “the problem” by gaps in income inequality are all pretty much in the same boat, from the center all the way left.  It’s just a question of how aggressive the particular person is about it as to which “-ism” they belong.  Russians learned this the hard way.  

    A Russian couple who are friends of mine had some of their relatives come over for their newborn’s baptism and at the reception afterward some of them were talking in Russian.  Our priest asked me to give him an idea of what they were discussing and I turned to listen and laughed. 
    One of the mother’s uncles was making a point about “. . . liberals, communists, it’s all the same people.  You can’t fool us.” or something to that effect.  I told the priest and, good conservative that he was, he laughed as well.

    You may recall the Catholic movie, The Shoes of the Fisherman, with Anthony Quinn.  If you pay close attention, you will notice that Catholicism and socialism are conflated in the mind of the main character.  He simply does not believe in the violent aspect of socialism.

    During the post-WWII period, actually, even before that as a result of the First World War, many people lost faith in religion in general and demoted it to sentimentality and social service.  This was the general status of Christianity in the U.S. in Catholic and even many Orthodox minds, as well as that of the mainline denominations, throughout the 60’s and 70’s.  Only in the eighties and nineties did this turn around somewhat in the ranks of the clergy, some of whom regained their theism.  Prior to that, most were functionally atheists and a number are to this day.  They hold a secular mindset and Christianity means no more to them than New Age spirituality. 

    But within Orthodoxy there is a slightly different tint.  Many of our clerics are also functional atheists but the Orthodox Church is a repository of ethnic solidarity, depending on the patriarchate.  So some clerics and laity hold on to the Church of Greek-ness or Slavic-ness or whatever.

    I sympathize with agnostics and atheists.   It is difficult to believe in a God you do not seem to be able to see or otherwise sense.  It seems a lot like Santa Claus, myths we tell children and the credulous. 

    “That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us:  For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring.  Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man’s device.  And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent:  Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead.” – Acts 17:27-31

    Sometimes I think that it is not that people don’t believe in God but rather that they cannot forgive Him for all the suffering in the world and thus deny His Reality.

    • For Misha from St. John Chrysostom for closed thread: Please forgive late reply to The Woman He Gave Me but just now locating what I hoped to send then for your consideration:

      “When we speak of the wife obeying the husband, we normally think of obedience in military or political terms: the husband giving orders, and the wife obeying them. But while this type of obedience may be appropriate in the army, it is ridiculous in the intimate relationship of marriage. The obedient wife does not wait for orders. Rather, she tries to discern her husband’s needs and feelings, and responds in love. When she sees her husband is weary, she encourages him to rest; when she sees him agitated, she soothes him; when he is ill, she nurses and comforts him; when he is happy and elated, she shares his joy. Yet such obedience should not be confined to the wife; the husband should be obedient in the same way. When she is weary, he should relieve her of her work; when she is sad, he should cherish her, holding her gently in his arms; when she is filled with good cheer, he should also share her good cheer. Thus a good marriage is not a matter of one partner obeying the other, but of both partners obeying each other.”

      “A good marriage is like a spiritual castle. When husband and wife truly love and respect each other, no one can overcome them. If a man is unmarried and is attacked with lies and slander, his confidence and self-esteem may crumble; he may even begin to believe the lies said against him. But if he had a loving wife, she would reassure him with the truth, and so uphold his spirit. If a woman is single and is the subject of vicious gossip, she may feel that her reputation is being cut to shreds. But if she had a loving husband, his faith in her goodness and honesty would both comfort her and also impress those who doubted her. Similarly, a good marriage is like a buttress when a person’s religious faith is shaken. Single people who are beset by religious doubts may feel that the house of God is collapsing around them, and that they are helpless to prevent it. But married people can turn to their spouse to express those doubts; and it is almost certain that the spouse’s faith is sufficiently solid to allay those doubts. In the providence of God, when a husband is spiritually weak, his wife is spiritually strong; when a wife is weak, the husband is strong.”

      “Those who treat their servants harshly, instilling fear into them with angry words and threats, may succeed in compelling their servants to work hard; but servants feel no attachment to such masters, and at the first opportunity run away. How much worse it is for a husband to use angry words and threats to his wife. Yet many men frequently try to intimidate their wives. They lift their voices and shout; they demand instant compliance to their every whim; they even raise their arms to force their wives to submit. Wives treated in this fashion become no more than sullen servants, acting as their husbands require out of cold fear. Is this the kind of union you want? Does it really satisfy you to have a wife who is petrified of you? Of course not. Indulging your ill-temper at the expense of your wife may give some immediate relief to your emotions; but it brings no lasting joy or pleasure. Yet if you treat your wife as a free woman, respecting her ideas and intuitions, and responding with warmth to her feelings and emotions, then your marriage shall be a limitless source of blessing to you.”

      — On Living Simply: The Golden Voice of John Chrysostom by Robert Van de Weyer. #72 ~ 74 Kindle

      • Sounds like Van de Weyer.  “Confidence” and “self esteem”?  Which writing of the good saint do you think you’re quoting?  How does one say, “. . . give some immediate relief to your emotions” in Church Greek?

      • For what it’s worth:
        I agree that the family should not be like an army but a house under the sound governance of the father, the head of the household.  I actually don’t know any men who enjoy giving orders to their wives and it is not something which tickles my fancy.  However, the real paradigm is that of father-daughter.  A wife is like a daughter, with benefits.  The wife’s father gives the husband his daughter to care for and govern as his own to the end of furthering the line of the families.  
        Patriarchy is really best seen as “fatherly rule” which is what the word means.  That is essentially what coverture meant in the old common law, that the wife was a dependent of the husband.  That is the Christian way.  Equality is a foreign concept.  The Fathers are clear that man came first and thus has seniority and St. Paul wrote that he never placed women in authority over men, presumably because it was against both the divine and natural hierarchy.  Equality is “house divided against itself” and the odds of it standing are not good.  Even if it stands, the absence of order and grace militate against it.

      • This lady captures a snapshot of the truth nicely:

    • cynthia curran says

      I know some ancient history and the new testament definitely fits the time period it was written. Lots of agnostics and Atheist no little of ancient history these days.

  7. As a convert from protestantism to the OCA I would object to characterizing His Eminence as the Archbishop of America. While this may have been true in the past based on the GOC’s numerical strength, this is not so much the case anymore. Now more than ever we need an authentic American Orthodox presence here. Whether that be the current OCA or some confluence of the existing gaggle of the various ethnic churches is up for discussion. But there can be no doubt that the divisions that currently exist hurt both our message of unity and our evangelism. It’s well past the time for this to happen. That being said be careful what you wish for, unless we strive for truth and remember that the King and Kingdom we serve is not of this world politics will always find a way to divide us.

    • George Michalopulos says

      Chris, when I use that phrase, I do it ironically. First, because the GOA uses it and second, because 79th St knows absolutely nothing about America.

      So no, I don’t view him as the “Archbishop of America” but only as the “GOA primate”. While all other ethnic primates likewise make the claim to being primates of their respective ethnic eparchies, only His Beatitude Metropolitan Tikhon (Mollard) is the “Archbishop of Washington and Metropolitan of All-America and Canada”.

      I just wish that Syosset start acting like it and stop sucking up to the Phanar.

      • I just wish that Syosset start acting like it and stop sucking up to the Phanar.
        That is one of most disturbing aspects of all this. Syosset sees the chaos being created by Elpi and the GOA…yet they continue to embrace him. It would be especially wise to distance oneself from this ticking time bomb.

      • Yes, doesn’t it seem as if Abp E is advised on what to say to his flock by a senior CNN editor?  Or maybe he’s advised by the apparently-Orthodox-by-inertia-only, George Snuffleupagus.  After all, “journalist” Snuffleupagus’s dad used to be Dean at the E 79th St GOAA archdiocesan cathedral.  

        I’d like to say they’re simply tone deaf, but tone deaf implies that you’d do better if you more fully understood the problem or issues at hand.  It seems that they just don’t care anymore, as if why bother pretending to protect the teachings of Christ and His Church any longer?  All that matters is attacking and countering  “dem evil Russians!”
        It’s patently absurd. The longer the OCA cozies up with the GOAA leadership crowd, the harder the OCA will fall as well. 

  8. Johann Sebastian says

    FYI, St. Peter the Aleut was martyred by Franciscans not long after Serra died.

    The enemies of our enemies aren’t necessarily our friends–especially when both sides are enemies.

      Our Orthodox church politicians, whatever branch of Orthodoxy they claim to represent, have become tools of the “World Order”. This has been going on for the past 140 or so years. They no longer are concerned with forgiveness and saving one soul,  but what is monetarily and politically expedient for them and their inner circle.
      There is a publication- The Sword of Christ, by Giles Corey, which details the purposeful manipulation of western christian thought and teachings. The things that are brought to light in the book explain (to me) why we wonder what the church leaders are up to, and why they are leaders in the first place! 

      • George Michalopulos says

        A lot of the undermining of the Christian faith began in Germany, with the so-called Higher Criticism. John D Rockefeller Sr spent bookoos of bucks to bring several of these German scholars to American Protestant seminaries to “up their game”.

        Basically, fervent Protestantism which appeals to the American upper classes no longer exists because of this. Which is ironic because Rockefeller was a devout, tee-totaling Baptist.

        At any rate, our own Orthodox theologians should have run screaming like bats out of hell from any type of dialogue with these “theologians”.

      • George,
        Theologians aside, there have been some very unorthodox teachings said by priests & bishops lately.
        1) Here is an example  from Metropolitan Alexios of the Atlanta Metropolis in May 2020:
        “Holy Communion is a matter of faith not of logical reasoning. Some years ago, I had mentioned in one of my sermons that both the believer and the unbeliever, when they receive Holy Communion they taste bread and wine. What they actually receive depends on the faith that each one of them has. For the Prophet David states, “the heavens declare the glory of God” for someone else the heavens declare nothing. It is faith that makes all the difference.””
        2)  June 2020,  priest declared in a parish homily: “we are not in the end times. There is no final anti-christ. The church has misunderstood the scriptures for 2000 years.”, Then pointed at the parishioners and said “YOU are the anti-christs.”
        3) A bishop closed down the churches in a state where there was never a state mandate to close them. The bishop himself forbade the sheep from entering.   The priest never offered to bring communion to his flock. Maybe he believes as His Eminence Alexios does. 
        Troubling times. 

        • Archpriest Paisius McGrath says

          But yet under obedience to Metropolitan Alexios we are all doing normal traditional Orthodox Patristic faith and practice in local parish I’m blessed by God to serve in, a very Evangelical, mission oriented, Patristic minded. Go figure

        • George Michalopulos says

          Johanna, this is all very troubling.

          I do not pretend to be a theologian but I believe His Eminence is not completely correct. Or at least he didn’t take his observation about the Eucharist to its logical conclusion. Indeed, it appears to elide over St Paul’s observation that the “bread and wine” is not merely subject to discernment of the physical elements but that it is the very Body and Blood of Christ Himself. The opinion of the communicant is immaterial, otherwise he would not have said that its reality causes illness and even death.

          That has nothing to do with opinion.

          As for what that priest said in his sermon, I can’t help but wonder what seminary he went to and what they taught him there. Isn’t that violation of some canon from one of the Seven Councils?

          As far as the Kung Flu is concerned, when the final book is written, we will all be shocked. One of the great misunderstandings is that the closing down of the churches was a gubernatorial decision, not a national one. Why in God’s name would any Christian pastor living in a sane state (like Georgia) which did not mandate the closing of churches, do so?

  9. ON POINT:  Suicide of the Liberals by Gary Morson on First Things  Excellent.  Will post Rod Dreher’s article on it shortly.  Wish First Things would allow some articles “for free” just to spread their message to those who otherwise would “never go there.”

    • George Michalopulos says

      Brilliant essay from Dreher, Nicole. Thank you for bringing it to our attention.

      I always knew that the Russian intelligentsia had (unknowingly) prepped the ground for Lenin, I just didn’t realize how pervertedly stupid and anti-trad, anti-Christian they were. I grieve for what they unleashed on the Russian people (and by extension, the rest of Eastern Europe post-WWII) but I do not grieve for what Lenin did to them.

      As the Greeks say “kala na pathoun” (“good it should it happen [to them]”).

      • cynthia curran says

        Considering that Stalin was a peasant thug that got to go to college because of the Russian seminary in Georgia. Stalin was ungrateful.

      • So glad George!  And even more chilling to me (from Morson’s article itself):  The easy and ignorant submission of the Kadets to the Soviet ideology, believing they would not be decimated by it, and their eventual destruction by it  reminds me so much of well-meaning liberals now.  Because so many of these are my colleagues, old friends and family, I grieve greatly for them temporally as well as eternally.    Praying all will awaken for spiritual and physical health reasons!

  10. “You don’t have to be a bigot to recognise the differences between the male and female sexes and understand why women’s sports, single sex changing rooms and toilets are important. The overwhelming majority of the world’s population grew up understanding these concepts.”
    Compulsory Conciliation:
    The Video: “An important update on free speech in Australia”:

  11. Archpriest Alexander F. C. Webster says

    “LonelyDn,” I prefer to stress my pro-Orthodoxy–as the only true faith as the fullness of revelation and the life in Christ–than engage in needless polemics against Jews, who, unlike many practitioners of Islam, pose no direct threat–either physically or spiritually–to us in the present era. 

    Allow me to reverse the question: why do you wish to embrace “anti-Judaism” or adopt an “anti-Jewish” posture? 

    • Christopher McAvoy says

      I hope I answered your question to him up above as, if I am not mistaken, we have similar viewpoints. Once again, I admire your hard work and gifts to serving the Church, Rev Fr Alexander and ask for your blessing on me and my family. 
      I will acknowledge that it has been for me a positive approach that led to my understanding. I certainly do not dwell on what is evil, I keep abreast, but I let the joy of the Lord be my strength. We are called to be cautious of Jews who lead us astray. At least I can say there are many good things found in the prager institute. Dennis Prager as an observant religious Jew has many more true Godly ideas than others, but yet he has his errors and hypocrisies.
      It is only in Christ’s cruficixion that we find His Holy resurrection, and our redemption.

  12. Speaking about Trojan horses and heresy of secularism I have found this murky organization.  You can apply for conferences they are organizing on the official site of OCA and everything is  ‘blessed’ by highly elevated Bishops  and theology professors. 
    Orthodox Christian Leadership Initiative
    United as the body of Christ to serve those divided by pandemics, politics, and persecutions.
    Metropolitan Tikhon, Metropolitan Joseph, Abp. Elpidophoros, Metropolitan Nicolae and Rev. Dr. Chad Hatfield
    What a decay from 70s when blessed memory Father G. Florovsky was a Dean and OCA church was giving big hopes.

  13. I am fatigued with many of the comments recently. Why can’t we give each other a little wiggle room, the benefit of the doubt, and stop reading motives and opinions that the author never states? 

    • Virtue-signalling, through taking offence at what is not said
      rather than what is, is (sadly) not confined to the non-Orthodox.

  14. “He – and by extension the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America”. No. We are Orthodox, not Catholics. The Archbishop is not the spiritual leader of the GOA, just of his metropolis. 

    • George Michalopulos says

      Well, yes.  However he and his overlord in Istanbul appropriate several high-minded titles and prerogatives for themselves, don’t they?

  15. Archpriest Alexander F. C. Webster says

    I concur, Brendan. It’s time to end this dead-end “dialogue.”

  16. Jim Caviezel:  a witness for freedom to worship (calling out his RC  hierarchy): in 12 minute video describing his upcoming films.   “Infidel” in theaters now, a thriller covering persecution of Christians and Mel Gibson’s “Resurrection” to come.  What a beautiful witness and sacrifice for Christ he has long given.  Like the devout traditional RCs I have known and know.  

  17. George Michalopulos says

    Well, this is interesting.  Looks like the State is coming down on the Church.  At least in Virginia: