Is the Orthodox Church Standing in the Way of the New World Order?

After the failure of the Cretan Council, I’m convinced that this may very well be the case. [Recent emendation –Ed.]

Of course, this brings up other interesting questions, primarily, why did the Globalists sink so much time, effort and money into making sure that it take place? Another question: why all the effort to coerce Antioch, Bulgaria, Georgia and Russia to attend after they demurred? And how about this: the incessantly repeated official line that it is binding regardless on all Orthodox Churches even those who didn’t attend and are resolutely against its findings?

I’m sure there are more. In the meantime, please take the time to read the following essay by Hieromonk Ignaty Shestakov. Shestakov answers my question –whether the Orthodox stands in the way of the New World Order–in the affirmative.

Hieromonk Ignaty (Shestakov)

Hieromonk Ignaty (Shestakov)

Source: Orthodox Church of Tomorrow

by Hieromonk Ignaty (Shestakov)

Taking part in the recent solemnities in Russia surrounding the celebration of Equal-to-the-Apostles St. Vladimir were representatives of Local Orthodox Churches from around the world. Present from the Serbian Orthodox Church was Metropolitan Amfilohije (Radovic) of Montenegro, who has long been a friend of the Russian Orthodox Church. Hieromonk Ignaty (Shestakov) of Sretensky Monastery talked with Met. Amfilohije about the fate of Orthodoxy and the Church’s place in the modern world. We present part of it here in English.

Your Eminence, how do you see the current period in the life of the Orthodox Church? Regardless of the outward prosperity, the increasing number of churches, construction and development, we are running into great temptations. There is pressure on the Church that often takes the form of persecution…

We have talked about the 1000-year anniversary of Sts. Vladimir of Kiev and John Vladimir [of Serbia]. Their reigns were break-through periods that changed the fate and importance in history of Orthodox peoples—first of all of the Slavs—as well as the mission of Orthodoxy in the Slavic world.

And now we are in another time of great change: new trials on the one hand, and on the other, the renewal of faith and the Church, first of all within the Slavic peoples, with Russia at the head.

Now our Church is again on the crucifix between East and West; or as St. Nicholai Velimirovich wrote, “over the East and West.” In the context of what happened then and what is happening now, the Orthodox Church is called to be over the East and the West. In what sense?

According to my personal consciousness, the Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church has been over the centuries a spiritual backbone between Asia and Europe.   

It is also a spiritual backbone today, a rampart of the modern world in the new conflict between East and West. By East we must understand not only the Islamic East, but the entire East: Buddhist, or Confucian.

On one side is the whole Eastern civilization, and on the other is the so-called Western, Euro-American civilization, based on the imperial idea, a synthesis of pagan Rome that deified the emperor and the primacy of the Roman bishop.

This Western civilization is the bearer of a new vision of the world, the new world order, and not only governmental and societal: we are talking about a new ethic, a new worldview, a new manner of life.

This is a completely secularized, antichristian, imperial idea. I would say that poking out from under such a form of antichistianity you can see satan’s nose—a satanism that is appearing more and more distinctly, making use of all the modern tools, and forcing itself on the whole world.

And standing in the way of this new world order, this new worldview and new radical antichristianity is the spiritual backbone between Europe and Asia—the Orthodox Church of Christ. So it must be destroyed, because while it exists, this new ideology cannot triumph over the whole world.

Therefore it is no accident that after the fall of the Soviet Union, when this imperial idea of the Euro-American type lunged into its new campaign, the first thing it did was to bomb an Orthodox country. It is by no means accidental that all this took place on the space of the Orthodox Serbian nation.

And this was only the beginning of the imperialistic expansion of the new world order and preparation (about which there can be no doubt, and this is perfectly clear when you look at what is happening in the Ukraine) for an attack on Russia. This is crystal clear, and it has no connection whatsoever with some world conspiracy theory.

The only power that unifies the peoples of the Balkans with Russia is the Orthodox Church, and in order to subjugate and take possession of these vast territories—and not only geographical but also strategic and economic—they have to steal their souls.

The Orthodox Church—the Church of St. Vladimir of Kiev and St. John Vladimir, and Equal-to-the-Apostles St. Constantine—now resembles St. Job the Much Suffering. And all that happened to the much suffering Job is happening to God’s Church—the Holy Catholic [Universal] Eastern Church. Especially in the twentieth century.

Just look at what happened to Constantinople, what is now happening to Alexandria, Antioch, and Jerusalem! Look at what happened to Russia in the twentieth century, and what happened with the Serbian Church! Such sufferings… We have to look at this a little more deeply. Just like the much suffering Job—he lost so much! His livestock, his property, his children—they all perished; in the end even his wife renounced him and satan himself attacked him… But God said only one thing to satan: touch not his soul.1

The soul of the modern world is Christ’s Church!

How would you assess the situation in contemporary Ukraine, when a schismatic congregation has been absolutely legalized, when millions of people believe the schismatics2 as if they were the true Church?

This is one of the inner, modern problems of the Orthodox Church as a whole, which is manifesting itself in particularly large scope on the space of Kievan Rus’—the Rus’ of St. Vladimir.

In our times, the formation of new states rising from the ruins of the Soviet Union and former Yugoslavia—not only new states, but also new nations—in one way or another influence the appearance of new “Churches”: the Ukrainian, Macedonian, Montenegro…

On one side we see Metropolitan Onuphry, the First Hierarch of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate—the Church that preserves the organic, living heritage of the Church of St. Vladimir, which respects all the specific characteristics of this portion of the people of Kievan Rus’, respects also this new state, but at the same time preserves the unity of the Church, remaining an organic part of the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church.

On the other side we have what that unfortunate Denisenko is doing. The question is: Do people like that believe at all in God? Do those people who subjugate the Body of Christ to any earthly interests, whatever they may be—in this case the interests of a nation or state—even believe in God?

I am afraid that they in essence are not serving Christ, but rather the pagan-imperialist idea of Western Euro-American civilization, which is in a fallen state.

We pray with St. Ephraim the Syrian that the Lord would not give us a spirit of “ambition”—that is, the lust for power.3

One can understand the state of Denisenko, who was once a candidate for Patriarch. But now we have this wretched history of the deification of the Ukrainian state, the Ukrainian nation, the Ukrainian language; this history of a schism in one nation, one Church—with catastrophic consequences.

During this critical time of the Church’s suffering, when the Eastern Church is the spiritual backbone of the world, the most important thing is to preserve the Church as Christ created it—free from the powers of this world, so that it can be the same witness to God as Job was, and return all that has been lost.

Through it, God will protect the soul of the faithful peoples, and at the same time the Church will be a real leaven for the modern world. No one was so prophetically aware of this as was Dostoevsky, who wrote that a future, healthy Church is the only salvation for the modern world and mankind.

But here is what is especially amazing. Europe, the U.S.A., and NATO fought for seventy years to destroy the USSR, and they achieved their end. But that same Europe guards the most essential results of the communist regime as if they were divine revelations.

For example, when were the borders established between the Ukraine and Russia, and between other soviet republics? Who established them? The communists established them both for you [Russians] and for us [Serbs]. Now, “defending human rights”, the Americans and Europeans support the Neo-Fascists in the Ukraine in order to preserve this legacy of the Soviet Union. The question is: for what? It means that we are talking about completely different interests: they are using this communist legacy in order to achieve their own imperialist goals.

The “Drang nach Osten”4 is using other methods to continue their crusades. In earlier times it was the idea of freeing the Lord’s Sepulcher; but what those crusades in fact did is quite obvious. What happened in fact was exactly what is happening today in Syria, Iraq, and Afganistan: the plunder of these Eastern peoples’ wealth.

We recall the words of the Western politicians about how Russia has too much natural wealth and too many natural resources, and they should be shared: “We will not only save what we have for ourselves, but we will take what we need from Russia.”

This is a very complicated history. And it is being refracted around Ukraine, Kiev— around the inheritance of St. Vladimir, whose anniversary we are celebrating.

What do you think of the fate of Christian, including Orthodox, peoples, who perhaps unconsciously bow their heads before this new world order, thinking that they are fighting for their own freedom? That is how it was during the break-up of Yugoslavia: many were convinced that they were fighting for freedom from the Communist legacy. We are seeing something similar happening now in the Ukraine. One gets the impression that this struggle is taking place within the framework of someone’s global plan.

In essence, that is exactly what is happening. If you take Yugoslavia for example, it becomes ever clearer to me that Yugoslavia was intentionally broken up. After all, it was a large country—20 million people. It was a state that had to be reckoned with and not so easy to manipulate, despite all its weaknesses and inadequacies—both as a Kingdom and as a federation.

They broke it up, guided by the principle of “divide et impera”—divide and conquer. They established these little satellite states of Slovenia and Croatia, Bosnia and Herzogovena, which never existed before as states, and they managed to divide Serbia from Montenegro—one people, and a centuries-old sovereign nation!

And from autonomous Kosovo they made an “Islamic state”. The U.S. ambassador to Kosovo was at a reception with the Serbian Patriarch and said that she is working for the first time as a diplomat in an “Islamic country”. We corrected her: It has been a Christian land since the fourth century. But they achieved that “Islamic state” by the NATO bombing—forming Kosovo as an independent state and an Islamic country. In the same way they are trying turn Bosnia into a unitary Islamic state.

Take Macedonia for example. What is Macedonia today? It is de facto already divided into two parts—the Slavic and the Albanian; and it is questionable how long it can exist in this form. The communists established Macedonia as it is today—just as they formed the Ukraine, and modern Montenegro.

The Montenegro that we have today was made by the communists: with a Montenegrin nation, and a Montenegrin language. Now they even want their own “Montenegrin Church.”

True, this process is meeting more difficulties in Montenegro than it is in Ukraine and Macedonia. I can explain this by the fact that our Church was strengthened by the blood of the martyrs—Holy Hieromartyr Ioaniky, Metropolitan Arseny, and over 150 other priests killed by the communists. It could be said that if you look at percentages, this was a greater sacrifice for tiny Montenegro than of the New Martyrs for Russia.

It is not surprising that the same group that ruled in Montenegro under the communists are still in power, only instead of the golden calf of communism they are now bowing down to the golden calf in Brussels—for the sake of their own interests.

The NATO bombs fell also on Montenegro—at Danilovgrad, Cetine, and Murino, killing eleven children. That is not to mention what happened in Kosovo.

And now they are forcing Montenegro to accept Kosovo’s independence. This is how Montenegro is going against its own life’s interests. This is how they are ruling and using small states.

This is why they divided Serbia and Montenegro, and are setting them against each other. This is why Ukraine was separated from Russia. It is not enough to establish borders—it is necessary to convince them that they are not one people, not one Church, that they do not have one and the same Prince Vladimir… Let’s divide St. Vladimir! Now, how are you going to divide him?

So, it is perfectly clear that in order to attain their imperialistic goals the modern West is openly destroying this Slavic unity, these governments. It is appropriating the fruits left by communist rule, and defending them to the point where fratricidal war has broken out in the Balkans, as well as in the Ukraine. Fratricide—in order to preserve the borders drawn by Lenin’s bolshevist system and order! Those who supposedly warred against communism and bolshevism are today the most zealous guardians of communism’s main fruits. But they are not interested in the soviet legacy—they are only pursuing their own interests.

A struggle is going on for oil, for natural resources, and industrial wealth in both the Ukraine and Russia, as well as in the Near East. They have made the East a hell, warring with those who they had earlier created—the so-called Al-Qaida. Meanwhile, Christ’s Church is being destroyed in the East. Fanatical Islamist movements are destroying Christianity in its entirety there. And again we are up against a totally antichristian ideology, which is acting in the interests of the new world order in all spheres of human life. It is subjugating everything to itself.

Parallel to this, everything is returning to the call for the “bread and circuses!” of pagan Rome, and the final remnants of Christianity are being routed from the spaces of Europe and America.

How are we servants of Christ supposed to react to these challenges against the Church and Christianity? What should we change in ourselves? What should we do?

We should do what I heard many years ago from a fool-for-Christ in the Smolensk Cemetery in St. Petersburg.5 She said to me then, “Go deeper, father, go deeper!”

Orthodoxy is the modern Job. You can take everything away from it, but you can’t touch its soul. God preserves the soul. Testimony to this is all that has happened over these thousand years since the time of Prince Vladimir.


1 The English translation of this passage (Job 2:6) reads: And the Lord said to the devil, Behold, I deliver him up to thee; only save his life. In the Church Slavonic text, however, the word “dusha” or “soul” is used instead of “life”. This gives a deeper meaning.

2 This is a reference to the so-called “Kiev Patriarchate”, headed by Philaret (Denisenko), who united under himself one branch of a previously existing system. Denisenko is encouraged and supported by the current Ukrainian government for political purposes—mainly to wrench the soul of the Ukraine from its historical roots in Holy Rus’. The canonical autonomous Ukrainian Orthodox Church is headed by Metropolitan Onuphry (Berezovsky).—OC.

3 Prayer of St. Ephraim the Syrian (said mainly during Great Lent): O Lord and Master of my life, a spirit of idleness, despondency, ambition, and idle talking give me not. But rather a spirit of chastity, humble-mindedness, patience, and love bestow upon me Thy servant. Yea, O Lord King, grant me to see my failings and not condemn my brother; for blessed art Thou unto the ages of ages. Amen (Translation from the Jordanville Prayer Book).

4 (German for “yearning for the East”, “thrust toward the East”, “push eastward”, “drive toward the East” or “desire to push East”) was a term coined in the 19th century to designate German expansion into Slavic lands. The term became a motto of the German nationalist movement in the late nineteenth century (definition from Wikipedia).

5 Where St. Xenia of Petersburg’s relics are kept.


  1. Monk James says

    Too many verbs in the title.

  2. M. Stankovich says

    Odd, don’t you you think, that while Blessed Xenia apparently alluded to the horrifying danger posed by the New World Order, she had not a single word to say regarding the holocaust of more than a million medical abortions in Russia this year, with no perceivable end in sight? The Saints can be so selective at times…

  3. Gail A Sheppard says

    This “go deeper,” thing interests me. Two men that I trust have ticked off the distance from me to the nearest monastery. “Now, where do you live? Oh, yeah, that’s how many miles from St.Anthonys?” They both are not optimistic about the future. I always ask, “What about my daughter?” They say they will pray and will not forget that she is out there and has only me.

    I, too, have ticked off the distance and wondered how to overcome my own phobia about frequenting such places, unattended. Maybe I should be closer. Interestingly, just this week, a man who circulated a petition to oppose a subdivision adjacent to St. Anthonys was asked by the monks to stop his efforts on-line. Could it be that they see that a subdivision might be useful for people like me? This “Job thing” is happening to me (so many losses in such a short period of time) and I have a tendency to be the first drop in the water before the subsequent rings.

    • Many cities and towns, especially in Russia, grew up around monasteries. This is a normal thing in an orthodox christian culture, and it used to be true even in western Europe. In the USA now, there’s a movement called the ‘St Benedict effect’ or something like that: families of lay Christians forming intentional communities. I’m not so sure about Arizona, but I tend to be an optimist, so I think that the monks are likely to influence the people who come to live in the subdivision somewhat more than those people would influence the monks.

  4. Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

    Would someone please reveal who is being quoted here: “We recall the words of the Western politicians about how Russia has too much natural wealth and too many natural resources, and they should be shared: “We will not only save what we have for ourselves, but we will take what we need from Russia.”
    He clearly says that Western politicians said that. Is he right or wrong?
    He did NOT say, “it was AS IF Western politicians said,” no, he said “We RECALL THE WORDS OF THE WESTERN POLITICIANS.” He then produced a sentence in quotation marks. What politicians? When? Where?

    • Gail A Sheppard says

      RE: “We recall the words of the Western politicians about how Russia has too much natural wealth and too many natural resources, and they should be shared: “We will not only save what we have for ourselves, but we will take what we need from Russia.”

      Your Grace, he could be right. I just saw a documenatrary on Khodorkovsky. Khodorkovsky was able to obtain control over several Siberian oil fields under the name Yukos. The Bush family, with well-known ties to the oil industry and the political arena, purportedly showed an interest in securing a strategic stake in YukosSibneft for ChevronTexaco. Khordorkovsky, and some of his key executives, were arrested. I’m guessing Russia did not want U.S. interests gobbling up what some (certainly Putin) felt belonged to Russia.

      • Gail,

        He is right. Western and West-inspired robber barons came in to Russia to soak it for all it was worth during the Yeltsin years. This came at a time of economic collapse and hardship. That has a lot to do with the present popularity of Putin and the Russian attitude toward the West, in general.

        Russians saw the age of the oligarchs as the age of Western-style exploitation, whether by American interests or by oligarchs aping the behavior of Western corporations.

        Here is a policy paper examining both the IMF and Kremlin roles in the 1990’s economic debacle. It was written at the end of the decade.

        It is quite Western oriented and misses the most significant piece of the puzzle, which it mentions in passing. I link it because it sheds a bit of light on the role of the IMF and oligarchs, who were bleeding Russia dry.

        The problem that Russia faced in the 1990’s was not a post-socialist problem but a capitalist problem. It had no efficient means to collect government revenue from the profits being made (which were being exported to the West) in order to reinvest them in society and stabilize the economy.

        It’s like a mafia bust out. You max out everything, burn the place and leave a smoking husk to degrade into fertilizer for another society to arise which you will eventually get around to destroying – much like the aliens in Independence Day. That’s what unbridled corporate capitalism, untethered to any nation, God or higher purpose, is like.

        That’s what Putin put down in Russia and what Hillary is offering you, once again, on election day.

        Another good one from Pat just to put a star on the tree.

        The sane ones believe in a mixed market with both a public and private sector. The private sector has to be allowed to make its profits but also has to reinvest in the greater society, its host. The private sector is run by people who behave differently and are distinguishable from the masses. The masses are the base, the host, so to speak. To the extent that private actors identify with and are loyal to king and :country, they have a dual identity: host and driver. The private sector drives the economy in the sense of motivating it, being the main engine, so to speak.

        Host and driver need each other. Another dualism. Yet they can work as one if they are reasonable. Not that there won’t be the occasional issue . . .

        The problem is drivers divorced from king and country. Not that they’re evil. Evil has no ontological reality, you may recall. But in not reinvesting in the host, they do remarkable damage.

        What we are witnessing is the rest of the world reacting to the US/EU practice of unleashing Multi-National Corporations to profit without restraint like Valkyries, or locusts.

        A hard rain’s gonna fall.

        • Misha, you are right but I think you are missing part of the story. A new state is being formed with larger borders. Quite Orwellian actually.

          The triumph of fascism and Marxism all roles into one. Techno-fascists. A system in which very few humans will be allowed to exist except as slaves. Cyborgs and robots will be the middle controlled by the overlord humans of the Clinton ilk.

          Unfortunately, not a fantasy but by the grace of God, still avoidable.

  5. Great article says

    Fantastic article, George; thanks for posting. It’s what I needed to read this morning to help lift my soul and combat some despondency about the state of our country and the world.

    I don’t write this lightly; I write as a life-long American and a long-time veteran of our Armed Forces with several tours of duty overseas over the past 15 years.

    Obviously everything happens under God’s control (as He allows), but the stars are lining up that probably the demonic HRC will be our next American President and we will very well may go to war with Russia. Over what? God only knows. To make our emasculated American leaders — both civilian and military — try to feel like men again? Please.

    If this happens, we will lose, and as God is my witness, I hope we will lose. The West and America stand for nothing these days except for destroying traditional truths and exporting pornography, abortion, and homosexuality. (As is common knowledge, pornography is our #1 cultural export; no joke.) We do this under the guise of “freedom” to make our wars (adventures overseas) more palatable to the poorer cultures whom we are trying to dupe into believing us.

    But in the end American men — and women (HRC will gladly send southern girls to die for her cause; though girls at elite northeastern private schools will probably be exempt) — will not die to protect transgender rights; the right of two dudes in Tanzania to marry; or the right of a theoretical woman in Indonesia to have an abortion. Cultures fight and win wars to protect their culture, their faith, their families, their way of life. The bozos in D.C. don’t realize this because most are such superficial stooges who couldn’t protect their puppy if their life depended on it. And the fact of the matter is that many of our civilian polcymakers do not have families; they do not have children; many are single people who have put their “careers” and pride before everything. Why would they understand what a people will fight and die for?

    There are hard and bleak times ahead. Yet we gain strength through regular confession and through regular partaking of Christ’s Body and Blood. Those who do not participate in our Church’s life will never have any concept of the peace it gives us, yes, even to the death. I love and pity our children and our children’s generation. I pray that God has mercy on them. For those children who wish to stay faithful to Christ, I pray that God gives them strength.

    I think the Orthodox Church has always stood in the way of the New World Order. It did 100 years ago when aggressively secularist British and Western powers conspired to support those degenerate forces to take down the Tsar-Martyr and his family. The New Holy Martyrs have been so much maligned in the West that most Westerners think the Holy Tsar was an incompetent boob who deserved to die. Lies, all of them. Heck, most Westerners believe the lie that Rasputin was a priest! These days, we are still experiencing the fallout from the fall of Holy Russia. The Tsar and his people were poised to retake Constantinople after WWI — imagine that, Hagia Sophia Orthodox again! Πάλι με χρόνια με καιρούς,. πάλι δικά μας θα ‘ναι!, as the saying goes. The western secularists would have none of it; stopping Russia from gaining control of the Bosphorous was their prime goal. Let’s just cause an internal revolution to advance our interests, shall we? Sound familiar, given recent events in Ukraine?

    The western secularists also won another battle in the 1920s when they manipulated suffering Greeks — who had suffered so much tragedy with the Μικρασιατική καταστροφή (the genocide of Greeks from Asia Minor post-WWI) — into accepting the B.S. “new calendar,” in a ploy to subjugate the Orthodox peoples to the West. The only thing the “new calendar” has done has been to divide world Orthodoxy. I regularly challenge anyone to name one positive benefit of the new calendar (sorry, making life “easier” for an Orthodox to live in the West does not count; and how effective a tool at facilitating church unification has the “new calendar” been, again?). To date, I have not heard of any positive that has ever come out of the “new calendar.”

    Yes, in HRC’s possible upcoming war against Russia, and by extension against our Orthodox Culture, Russia will win. The rebirth of Orthodoxy in formerly communist Russia has been astounding. How much do we hear about this on our American propaganda news networks? America and the West incessantly mock God; yet God will not be mocked.

    • George Michalopulos says

      GA, an astounding analysis!

      If I may: your point about traditional cultures willing to fight and die for preserving their culture brings to mind the boldness with which the homogeneous Athenians, heavily outnumbered as they were, to engage in the “hoplite run” into the teeth of the Persians at Marathon. And thence shattering their lines.

      The Persian army which landed at Marathon was a polyglot, multicultural gang who were only in it for the booty. They had previously massacred the men of Euboeia and gang-raped the women. The average Athenian hoplite was a freeborn Hellene who bore the same physiognomy as the fellows to his right and left; he believed in the same gods and spoke the same language. He believed in the same things as did his brothers-in-arms and above all, he wished to protect his posterity.

      The perverts and Trotskyites who man our State Department, think-tanks, and bureaucracy can’t understand what it means to have a common culture and a shared tradition. (Or children born the normal way.)

    • Peter A. Papoutsis says

      Wonderful and accurate.


  6. M. Stankovich says

    Let me be the first – in all humility – to congratulate the Patriarch of Moscow for his bold initiative in signing a petition on October 3, 2016 calling for an outright ban on all abortions in the Russian Federation, which you can read about here. He was quickly joined by Muslim clerics and “thousands of Russian pro-life supports” in calling on President Putin to supporting such a law. This is a long awaited and God-sent bold direction His Holiness has chosen to take and I admire his decision and pray for his success. Many Years!

  7. Yes, Zbigniew Brzezinsky would certainly agree. He is on record as stating that the Orthodox Church is the enemy of western designs and must be destroyed, one way or another.

    The Orthodox Church, at least that part of it that holds the Orthodox Faith, has been at war with the West practically since the fall of the Soviet Union. At that point, the focus of evil in the modern world shifted from Soviet Russia to the Democratic National Committee.

    Like Stalin, Progressive Liberalism, Inc. was useful in defeating a greater evil. but once that evil was defeated, its true colors bled through – its totalitarianism, feminism and hostility to Christ and His Church.

    So, in the Middle East (Syria, Iraq), the Balkans (Serbia, Bosnia, Kosovo), the Eastern Slavic lands (Ukraine, Russia) the West has been engaged in a shooting war for quite some time. In Greece, it is merely economic warfare at this point.

    We should feel honored, I suppose. The West’s power is economic; they merely insist on their moral ideology. So they are antagonistic toward the Orthodox world as well as Islam and China. All of these posit moral/cultural codes at variance with that of the West. Part of it is the sheer will to dominate. Part of it is that the alliance that does dominate in the West has agreed on a certain moral paradigm which they see as superior to all others and which they insist they are going to impose on the rest of humanity. In that sense, they are much like Islam or Soviet Communism.

    Of course, they must be defeated. And they are being defeated as we speak. They have constructed an ideology which is decidedly “soft” in its convictions and permissible means to achieve them. They must be perceived as enlightened, merciful and tolerant. They eschew direct coercion if possible in favor of soft power. They desperately need to occupy the “moral highground” as they perceive it.

    They venerate “freedom”, “peace” and “equality”. Their absolutism regarding their values is their weakness. That is where Islam has hit them and that is where Russia and China seem to be hitting them now.

    They are reeling. That is the significance of the present election fiasco. Wild eyed crazy with fear, they press on without a clue as to how to proceed. That translates into the spectacle of the present struggle for power here.

    The good news is that either way it should soon be over. If Trump wins, the wind will be at his back and hopefully the political landscape will slowly change. If Hillary wins, matters will be forced to a crisis very quickly and it will be much more destructive – yet the end result will yield the same set of winners and losers, with the difference being that America would then be much less likely to enjoy a soft landing from its height of global hegemony.

  8. Michael Kinsey says

    If there is a war between the US and Russia. How could I side with the US. if they are really outlawing infanticide, with impunity. God save the Russians! They do what the authentic Christian Church always did, if this is true. I am a pro-life activist, first. Abortion is intolerable. The Holy God is not going to side against obedient Christians ruling and employing the Judeo-Christian value system, rather than the vapid secular-humanist value system, who only charge is do as thou wilt, we are queens, we shall see no sorrow.

  9. Peter A. Papoutsis says

    For the edification of us all


    By Archimandrite Vassilios, the Abbot of the Holy Monastery of Iviron

    I chose a part from the Gospel, from the Bible, “Our Father”, which is I think the most characteristic prayer as it is the “Lord’s prayer”, the prayer given to us by the Lord.

    I think that the Lord taught us the prayer He said, He gave us the life He led and taught us His own self; and this is the truth of Jesus Christ. And as He said another time: “I am the vine, ye are the branches” (John 15:5); as the relationship of the vine and the branches is an organic one and the vine’s juice goes silently to the branches, in the same way the Lord gave all His existence to us. I believe that within this prayer, if we say it consciously and experience it, we live in Jesus Christ.

    Let us start reading this prayer and follow it phrase by phrase.

    The first phrase says:

    ” Our father who art in heaven ”

    I think that our most serious sin is one; many times we despair and forget one thing: not that we are weak but that God loves us. Our capital, the capital of the weak, is that God loves us and that God is our Father.

    We say that the father or the mother love their child not because the child is good, but because it is their child. It is a great thing if we can acquire this consciousness and feel that we can call God our Father. Everything is included in this word. It immediately places us in the environment of the Church. Someone can be an orphan, abandoned by their own parents, having lost everything and feeling alone. From the moment, though, that God is their Father, they feel secure, safe and the whole world is their home.

    I would dare say the following: wouldn’t it be better if we were abandoned by everybody in order to experience this love of God? I believe that we can say this as well. This is why the Lord says in His blessings: Blessed are those who mourn, blessed are those who hunger and thirst, blessed are those who weep and cry…” That is: May we be deprived of human affection, lose everything, in order to feel that God is our Father.

    I remember that once we asked an old woman, a Russian, in Paris , what a monk is and she spontaneously replied that a monk is a man hanging from a rope and this rope is the love of God. I think that this is what we can say in the end about everyone: men have a power in their lives and this power is that God loves them. We came into this life and hope because someone loves us; this someone is strong regardless of the fact that we are weak.

    ” Our father who art in heaven “. Our father is not just someone that can be found in various places, but is the heavenly Father living in heaven and, therefore, the entire world, heaven becomes our home. We can feel comfortable and free. This is why it is said that when they told Evagrius Ponticus, one of the first ascetics of Nitria, that his father died, he reacted spontaneously saying: “Do not swear. My Father never died!”

    With the first phrase, therefore, the Lord gives us courage, makes us His own brethren and says that we can call His own Father our Father. The Fathers add something more: We call God “Our Father” – we do not simply say my Father – therefore God is the Father of all of us and all of us are brethren.

    The next phrase says: ” Hallowed be thy name, thy kingdom come… ”

    The Fathers of our Church see in these two phrases the presence of the Son and the Holy Spirit. Consequently, the presence of the Holy Trinity exists in these three phrases “Our Father… thy kingdom come…” The Name of the God Father is the Logos of the God Father, the Son of God, and the kingdom of God is the Holy Spirit. (There is an older version of the Gospel that instead of saying “thy kingdom come…” it says: “thy Spirit the Holy may cometh onto us and cleanse us”). Therefore, we have here the presence of the Holy Trinity. It is what we say: “I believe in one God the Father Almighty… and one Lord Jesus Christ… and in the Holy Spirit…”

    “Hallowed be thy name…” We beg for the name of God to be hallowed. If we see here what the Fathers say -that the name of God Father is the Son and Logos of God, this phrase “hallowed by thy name” can be connected with what the Lord says: ” And for them do I sanctify myself, that they also may be sanctified in truth (John 17:19). And these words: “sanctify myself” that the Lord says mean that I sacrifice myself so that in reality the faithful can be sanctified in truth. When we say, therefore, “hallowed by thy name”, it is as if we say “let the sacrifice of the Son and Logos of God be sanctified”. This is why the Lord is our blessing, our salvation and justice. And “thy kingdom come…” means the Holy Spirit may come to the Pentecost. The Holy Spirit always comes and the Church is a continuous Pentecost.

    Within these three phrases, we see, therefore the Holy Trinity. We can also see in these three phrases the reality of the main prayer of the Divine Liturgy: the priest begs the Heavenly Father, to send the Spirit the most holy and transform the bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ.

    And we reach the fourth phrase which is a main phrase of “Our Father” and the focal point in the life of the Lord and our lives:

    ” thy will be done…”

    This phrase, “thy will be done”, can be compared with the word “Amen” in the prayer. This “thy will be done” is the conclusion and recapitulation of the previous phrases where we say “hallowed by thy name”, “thy kingdom come”, “thy will be done” . We mention God, we ask His name to be hallowed, His kingdom to come, His will to be done. We give everything to God and this is affirmed and recapitulated with this phrase: “thy will be done”.

    In order to better understand the importance of “thy will be done”, it will be a good idea to remember what the Lord said about his coming down from Heaven: “For I came down from heaven to do the will of the Father that sent me and finish His work.” And at another point He says: “my judgement is just…”, that is my judgment is fair and correct, “because I seek not my own will but the will of him that sent me.” Something else as well: do you remember the meeting of the Lord with the woman of Samaria ? When his disciples came, they said to the Lord: “Master, eat” and he answered “I have meat to eat that you know not of…” I have food to eat that you do not know. “My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work.”

    He says that what feeds me is to do the will of the Father that sent me. I believe that this is the basic thing that determines the life of the Lord and our lives. This is why we see the Lord, later on, in the hour of Gethsemane, the hour of the true agony – one could say the hour of a strong earthquake that everything is tested and the Lord “being in an agony, he prayed more earnestly” – saying ” My Father, if it be possible, let this chalice pass from me. Nevertheless, not as I will but as thou wilt” (Matthew 26:42). What the Lord told us to say, and he himself said it at the difficult moment and he went to his passion peacefully and with all the strength, “not as I will but as thou wilt”. And by saying this he turned inwardly, acquired new strength and went forward.

    It would not be a bad idea to look for a moment at our own lives. We fight, we start, we have plans, we have programmes, we do well, but at a specific moment we may suffer hardships. I think that there is no man that does not have their own Gethsemane . When everything falls apart, only then everything is resurrected and only then someone can understand what the Lord said: by doing the will of the Father that sent me and not my will, I get strength. When everything is destroyed and there is no hope anywhere, when everything is covered with darkness, if man says: My God, thy will be done, they immediately acquire new strength, they are resurrected and move forward with all the power and modesty towards the path, the passage, the Pasch which is Christ, in an evolution that never stops. And, later on, they will thank God not for the easy things, but for the difficulties brought to their lives and for their Gethsemane which forced them within the elimination of themselves to say their thoughts freely, to end up saying: “My God, as thou wilt”.

    I think that this phrase “thy will be done” is similar to the phrase “let there be” of creation (what the Lord said: “He said and were born, he commanded and were created”) and the liturgical “let there be” (when the priest officiates the sacrament of the Divine Eucharist and begs the Father to send the Holy Spirit and transform the bread into the Body of Christ and the wine in the Chalice into the Blood of Christ and says Amen, Amen, Amen, which means that the sacrament has been performed. There is a relationship between the “let there be” of creation and the liturgy). When man consciously says: My God, thy will be done by me as well, it is similar to what the Virgin Mary said to Archangel Gabriel “be unto me according to thy word” which means to be done to me, in my existence, inside me according to what you say; my God, to be done according to your will. Hence, man is sanctified and acquires another kind of power.

    Abba Isaac says somewhere that man, through his obedience to God, can become God by grace and create new worlds that do not exist: man becomes absolutely new, the weak acquires a new power and the dead acquires a new life and advances. It is then that he understands that it is real food to end up saying calmly: “My God, not as I will but as thou wilt.”

    This is why the true theologian is not the one that attends university courses and excels due to remembering some dates and names or writing a thesis. The true theologian is the one that knows which is the power and the truth of the Lord’s teaching; the one that at the difficult moment says: not as I will but as thou wilt. It is then that God enters within this man, makes him a theologian, a god by grace and man can advance in another way in Jesus Christ. As the Lord resurrected advanced with the doors closed, in the same way this man, this weak and at the same time almighty man advances through the grace of God regardless of whether the problems are solved or not. This is why if we should suffer difficulties, let us express our thoughts freely, each one express themselves as they want, because God is our Father. But afterwards we should say: My God, I do not know, you know, you love me more than I love them and everyone belongs to you more than they belong to me. Therefore, let thy will be done. If your will should seem to be a disaster, let it be a disaster. It is better to have a disaster from God’s will than any success with human will which is a real doom and disaster. Then the phrase “let thy will be done” is the phrase that feeds and resurrects us in another place.

    The next phrase is: ” on earth as it is in heaven…”

    Here, says St. John the Chrysostom, Christ makes us responsible for the salvation of the entire world. He does not say: “My God, your will be done in my life”, but your will be done on earth as it is in heaven, be done in the entire world. I remember that once that I were in the island of Kos , I saw an old woman. She said to me: “I am illiterate and I do not know any prayer. I can’t say the symbol of faith “I believe in one God…” or “Our Father…” This is why every night before I go to bed, I cross myself and pray to God that everybody is well when they wake up in the morning. Am I doing right?” she asked me. “You are doing the right thing”, I said to her.

    You see the old woman had realized the secret of this prayer and because she lived in the Church and the grace of Christ was living inside her silently, as the juice of the vine goes to the branches, she did what was proper although she was illiterate: she begged God that everybody is well when they wake up in the morning. This is why we say: “on earth as it is in heaven”.

    And following that we say: ” give us this day our daily bread”.

    When we reach the time of our Gethsemane and we say “My God, thy will be done,” and we do not repine, we do not begrudge, but we accept this difficult time with patience and peace, then, I believe, that our spiritual stomach is ready to digest the real food. And this real food is again the Lord, Jesus Christ. You saw that he said: “I am the living bread which came down from heaven, if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever” (John 6:51). I am the true bread, the living bread, which came down from heaven and if someone eats from this bread, he will live and he will not die. He acquires as of this moment a power and a grace that helps him get over death; he is as of this moment in eternal life although still living.

    When the Lord says “give us this day our daily bread”, what exactly does He mean? The Fathers say that the expression ” τον άρτον τον επιούσιον ” in Greek (=the daily bread or the staff of life) is the bread that concerns the essence of man or the bread of the next day . And the next day is the next eon; the kingdom of heaven. We pray, therefore, to God, our Father, to make us worthy of the “next day”, of the heavenly b read , of Jesus Christ, to give Him to us as true food as of today. Although we are still in flesh, although we are still living in this world, we are asking the real bread that will feed us to be the bread of the angels, the bread of the “next day”, the bread of the future life and kingdom.

    ” And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us”

    Here we remember the Lord’s Prayer about those that put him on the cross: “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do” (Luke 23:34 ). The Lord forgave them and because there was no excuse for that, He found an excuse: that they did not know what they were doing.

    “And forgive us…as we forgive…” This phrase is a bit more demanding. The Lord does not say to ask God, the Father, to help us forgive the others, but we say that we forgive them without any question. Gregory of Nyssa says that this phrase is as if we are saying to God the Father to take us as a model and forgive us as well.

    If we do not forgive, however, then nothing happens; the Lord said it clearly: “But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses” (Matthew 6:15 ). We can attend the Sunday school, listen to the homilies, go to church, participate in the communion and advance in spiritual life; we can perform miracles and, yet, not forgive someone. But if we do not forgive, then nothing happens.

    Here, I would like us to remember something that St. Kosmas Aetolos used to say to people: “I hurt because I do not have the time to see each one of you separately, to hear your confession and your complaints and tell you whatever God enlightens me to tell you. As I cannot see all of you, I will tell you some things which you must implement. And if you implement them, you will go forward. The first is to forgive your enemies.” He gave them an example in order to make them understand what he wanted to say: “Two men came to confession, Peter and Paul. Peter said to me: Saint of God, since my birth I have followed the good path. I have lived according to the church, I have done so many good things; I pray, I give alms to the poor, I have built churches, I have built monasteries. I have, though, a small shortcoming: I do not forgive my enemies.” St. Kosmas says: “I judged that he would go to hell and said that when he dies, he would be thrown to the street to be eaten by the dogs.” After a while, Paul came and told me: “Since my birth, I have never done anything good, but, I have stolen, I have fornicated, I have committed murders, I have burned down churches, monasteries; as if I were possessed by demons. I have only one good thing: I forgive my enemy.” St. Kosmas says: “I stepped down, embraced him, kissed him and told him to receive communion in three days.”

    The one that had all the good qualities had one shortcoming: he did not forgive his enemies and this contaminated everything. As when we have 100 pounds of dough and we leaven it with a small quantity of sour dough and all of it is destroyed. On the other hand, the person that did so many evil things would forgive his enemy; this acted inside him as the flame of a candle and burned down everything. I think this is the main thing. Many times, our whole life emits a bad smell instead of being Christ’s aroma and we do not know why. We should forgive. We should not nurture any bad feeling for anyone. It is only then that our lives will go forward. If we do not do it, then all our theologies and our holiness will be wasted. This is why the Lord says: ” And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us .” Such a small thing can open the kingdom of heavens or make our entire life dirty.

    ” And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil”

    We say “lead us not into temptation” and, on the other hand, St. James the Apostle says: “My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations” (James 1:2). The question is solved by the Fathers. St. Maximus the Confessor says that there are two kinds of temptations: on the one hand, we have the hedonic and voluntary ones that lead to sin. These are the temptations that we ask the Lord not to lead us into so as not to be led astray. On the other hand, there are other temptations and adversities, the involuntary and painful ones, which chasten the loving-sin judgement and stop sin. We ask, therefore, not to be led into the first kind of temptations, the hedonic and voluntary ones but should we encounter the other adversities, we must accept them with joy because these temptations bring knowledge, humiliation, and the grace of the Holy Spirit. Remember what is said in the Gerontikon (the sayings of the Desert Fathers): “Take away temptations and no one will be saved.” If we take temptations out of our lives, then no one will be saved.

    “…but deliver us from evil”. The last phrase of this prayer is the evil. The fist phrase of the prayer is “Our Father”. God is the first word, the first reality; the last one is the evil. Our lives move between the evil and God. The evil left no one without temptations: neither the first Adam in Paradise nor the second, our Lord Jesus Christ, when he went to the desert. Our Lord says again: “this kind can come forth by nothing, but by prayer and fasting” (Mark 9:29 ). The only way to be free from the evil is by praying and fasting. The evil does not go away by applying logic, as cancer does not go away by taking aspirins. The devil does not go away with clever things. A monk says that the greatest lawyer cannot deal with the smallest devil. This is why we should never start a dialogue with the evil. Leave him and go away.

    The issue in spiritual life is to acquire the spiritual distinction: to distinguish whether something is sent by God or by the devil. One could say: I am a weak man. How can I acquire this distinction? I think that everything is simple if we, consciously, say this prayer that the Lord taught us. We can start now backwards: if we forgive our enemies without any questions; if we are fed with the heavenly bread; if at our difficult moments we say “My God, your will be done” and if we feel God as our Father, then although we are very weak, we will be almighty at the same time. On the contrary, if we do our will and we do not forgive the others, then we transform the devil from an ant into a lion and in no way can we deal with the situation. If, however, we say: God’s will shall be done, I know nothing; if we forgive without questions; if at the moment that someone kills us, we, killed, can say that there is no bad feeling for the one that killed us and we say “it does not matter, God will look after me”, then this man, this weak being, becomes almighty and can face any situation while the devil in front him is just an ant. And can go forward freely.

    Remember that when in Gethsemane the Lord “being in agony prayed more earnestly” and said “not my will be done”, the Holy Bible says that “there appeared an angel unto him from heaven strengthening him” (Luke 22:43 )

    Remember also that when in the desert he said “Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, thou shalt worship the Lord thy God and him only shalt thou serve”, the devil left him and “behold, angels came and ministered unto him” (Matthew 4:10 -11). The same happens to us: if we say this prayer, if we lead this life, the evil goes away, the spiritual distinction comes inside us and angels minister us. We can feel the angels’ company; we can live in Heaven as of now; we can use these phrases of the Lord and say that our lives become then “angel-built” and “God-covered”. Then the small man becomes almighty through the grace of God…



    • Modernists habitually mistranslate this because there is an English mistranslation in widespread use and they have aped it to be more “normal”.

      Traditionally, the Orthodox have used the version of this prayer liturgically which states, “forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors”. This puts a special zing to the whole God vs. Mammon thing which is well emphasized, as well as representing sins as “debts”.

      Also, the closing words do not read, ” . . . deliver us from evil.” but rather ” . . . deliver us from the evil one.”. The devil’s greatest trick is to convince the world he doesn’t exist. Evil has no ontological reality behind it, but the devil is a fallen angel who chose and chooses evil.

      • Tim R. Mortiss says

        As a Presbyterian until age 65, I was of course a “forgive us our debts” man. You could always tell the Presbys from the Methodists, Lutherans, Anglicans, Catholics, and most others: we were debts and debtors and the rest of ’em were “trespassers”.

        It’s been an adjustment to say “trespass”!

      • Peter A. Papoutsis says

        Actually the Greek was very clear. Whoever translated this on the Apostoliki Diakonia website should be criticized. As for it being Modernist I strongly disagree. I think you protest too much. Chill out buddy.


        • What would be the point of excising the devil?

          [btw, I admit I can by hypercritical at times, or seem that way, but I usually do have a point]

    • Monk James says

      Peter A. Papoutsis (October 18, 2016 at 5:01 pm) says:
      For the edification of us all—————
      By Archimandrite Vassilios, the Abbot of the Holy Monastery of Iviron
      There are some serious liabilities here, since the ‘abbot’ — maybe the hegoumen if we’re speaking orthodox? — is commenting on a badly mistaken English-language translation of ‘Our Father’, and probably not in his own language.

      In this prayer’s text from the gospel according to St Matthew — the text we orthodox Christians use without alteration — there is NOTHING about ‘daily bread’ or ‘trespasses’ or ‘temptation’.

      We must do better.

      Maybe consider this:

      Our Father in Heaven, may Your Name be kept holy.
      May Your reign begin.
      May Your will be done, as in the heavens, so also on Earth.
      Give us today the Bread we most need.
      And forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors.
      And, rather than let us be put to the test,
      rescue us from the Evil One.

      Peace and blessings to all.

      • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

        Y-A-W-N! “In this prayer’s text from the gospel according to St Matthew — the text we orthodox Christians use without alteration.” Well, the Our Father Orthodox use is often different from the exact text from the Holy Gospel according to Matthew, leading to the hypothesis that the format was fixed BEFORE the Gospels were written down. The Slavonic and Russian Gospels’ texts ask that we not be lead into “napast” rather than not into “iskushenie!”
        Monk James’s proposal shows a distressing tone-deafness where English idiom is concerned.”as in the heavens, so also on Earth” is markedly inferior to “on earth as it is in heaven!” And “rather than let us be put to the test,” is incredibly clumsy: “lest we be put to the test redeem us from the evil one.” “Rather than let us be…!?!” Egads!

        • Peter A. Papoutsis says

          The good bishop said:

          Peter A Papoutsis! Thanks for the reminder!
          PETER! Answer this: in the book of Judges (KJV) CHAPTER 12, VERSE 6, we read, “Then they said unto him, Say now Shibboleth: and he said Sibboleth: for he could not frame it to pronounce it right, Then they took him and slew him at the passages of the Jordan…” How does your Septuagint surpass the KJV in rendering the Hebrew word Shibboleth?”
          Still waiting, as your “good bishop….”

          Answer: keep waiting, and keep denouncing our canonical scriptures.

          • Peter, I am curious about your claim that the RSV texts used in the GOA are corrected to match the Byzantine text. I spent two years in a GOA parish that used an official GOA RSV Gospel, and it most definitely was not corrected. I have on my shelf an official GOA text with side by side Greek and RSV Gospel readings — and it is also definitely not corrected.

            Again, since you keep dodging the issue, none of these things are problems with translation as such (although there are some of those, too) — they are nearly all the direct result of the RSV translators specifically and consistently rejecting the Byzantine text every time there is an opportunity to do so.

            Look up these verses and tell me how well the RSV does with them (compared to the KJV or just standing on its own — doesn’t matter.) When you are done with these, I will send you a few more:

            Matthew 1:25, 5:44, 6:33, 27:35

            And in the process, you might begin to see why your claims to defend the canonical Scriptures might ring a bit hollow, since you refuse to acknowledge the consistent specific repudiation of the Byzantine text of the NT by the RSV translators, and since you refuse to acknowledge that the KJV follows the Byzantine text of the NT extremely closely and literally. Instead, you use the slippery “they both have problems” dodge.

            It is fine that you insist on the Greek received text (and I quite agree that the Byzantine text-type is what we should use) but if you continue to embarrass yourself by pretending that the KJV NT and the RSV NT are somehow equally deviant from the Byzantine text, one wonders if overweening pride (or some sort of obsessive personality disorder) in refusing to acknowledge an error is a more reasonable explanation.

            • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

              Edward, you’re right, of course, but Mr Papoutsis is entirely invested in his kooky hypothesis. It reminds one of Rumpelstiltzkin, as did Mr Warren! Rumpelstiltzkin was absolutely convinced of the hypothesis that no one could know his name, and when someone not only knew it but repeated it aloud, his only recourse was to refuse to admit his mistake and stomp his foot right into the ground!

              • Peter Millman says

                Hi your Grace,
                Instead of trying to be funny, which you are not, try to be humble. After all. you have compelling reasons for humility. This is another gratuitous cheap shot by a cheap shot artist. You could learn a great deal about grace, dignity, and a true intellect by reading and absorbing the wisdom of Mr. Papoutsis, instead of acting like a churlish, puerile buffoon. Sad to say, Mrs. Fitzgerald never instilled manners in her wayward son.

                • Actually, Mr. Millman, if you would take the time to read Bp. Tikhon’s post again, you will see that he isn’t trying to be funny. After all, the story of Rumpelstilzkin isn’t at all a funny one — it is pretty scary.

                  What he is pointing out — as I did in the post below this one — is that Peter Papoutsis, for all of his other many good qualities, seems to be incapable of admitting that he is wrong — and I think that Rumpelstilskin is actually a pretty good analogy the more I think about it.

                  I have repeatedly pointed out the basic problem with the Greek text underlying the RSV, and I have pointed out that the RSV translators specifically, systematically, and intentionally reject the Greek text of the NT that Mr Papoutsis insists is the gold standard for Orthodox Christians.

                  Both Bp. Tikhon and I agree with Mr Papoutsis on which Greek text of the NT is authoritative!!! We are simply pointing out that the RSV translators specifically and intentionally disagree with Mr. Papoutsis and with us on that point.

                  There are many many other problems with the RSV — such as the way that the functional agnosticism of many of the liberal Protestant translators affected the wording throughout, and the kooky ungrammatical use of the second person pronouns that is throughout the translation — in fact one could say that this latter feature can only be described as a systematic and intentional mistranslation.

                  I began this whole exchange by specifically stating the problems with the KJV of the NT — 1.) There are some familiar words that have changed in meaning since the time of the KJV translation, and 2.) there are a couple of verses (such as one about the Theotokos) where Protestant thinking perhaps influenced the translation.

                  What I continue to be befuddled by is Mr. Papoutsis’s unwillingness or inability to do a similar specific critique of the RSV. He will only say “both have problems” — probably because he knows that by his own criteria, the RSV is not going to stack up very well if it starts getting compared with the KJV.

                  One is left with the impression that he perhaps won’t do such a critique because it would mean acknowledging that Bp. Tikhon and I might actually be right about something.

            • Peter A. Papoutsis says


              Please do not engage in the same bait and switch the Good Bishop is known for. I said, and was very clear in the fact that I and the rest of the laity were taught to correct the RSV or even KJV according to the canonical Greek Scriptures. I did not mention the RSV being corrected in the Gospel and Epistle readings.

              In fact, in my old GOAA divine Liturgy book, that has the Gospel and Epistle readings in the back, has some, but not all the corrections that are needed.

              If you go to the GOAA website and look at the Old Testament reading for lent they are straight RSV readings with NO corrections towards the Septuagint text. I even drafted and sent two emails to the webmaster and the Archdiocese headquarters complaining about this. (Btw the Old Testament reading in the KJV would need correcting as well).

              So I do not disagree with you in fact I complained about this to the GOAA, for whatever my complaints amount to.

              For the record I also have complained, not to C.T.O.S. directly, that although I love their Gospel and Epistle books, there are still errors present in their KJV that need to be corrected and conformed to our canonical New Testament.

              So again I think I am in agreement with you that we need to correct the RSV and KJV pursuant to our canonical scriptures. This is why I have and will continue to recommend Mr. Michael Asser’s English translation of the Septuagint based on the King James Version that is on Orthodox England. Com or even my English translation of the Septuagint (not completed as of yet) The Holy Orthodox Bible available in several volumes on

              So I have corrected the RSV to fit the Septuagint and our Official Greek New Testament. Michael Asser had corrected the KJV according to the Septuagint. This is what I have always said and never dodged anything unlike the good bishop who wants me to play his bait and switch game. No thanks. Moving on.


              • Peter, I apologize if I misunderstood you — there is no search function here to confirm, but I could have sworn that you said that the RSV texts used in the GOA have been corrected. I will try to hunt down the comment I am referring to.

                But all I have really ever asked for from you is an acknowledgement that the biggest problems with the RSV (and all other non-KJV based translations) are that the Greek text from which it is translated is wrong — and that the greatest strength of the KJV (and the handful of translations derived from it) is that the Greek text from which it is translated is, unlike the RSV, virtually identical to the Byzantine lectionary.

                You can’t translate something correctly when whole words, phrases, and verses are excised completely from the Greek text because the RSV translators believed, as a matter of principle, that when in doubt, the Byzantine text is WRONG. It isn’t a matter of correcting the translation, it is a matter of, “wait a minute, why is half of that verse missing?” There is nowhere in existence a printed copy of the RSV New Testament that puts back in all of the parts of the Byzantine text that the RSV translators removed — in fact, by definition, any such text wouldn’t actually be an RSV. But again, no-one has done such a revision, so there is no point in recommending a “corrected RSV.”

                So to recommend the RSV’s use for Orthodox Christians is simply irresponsible, unless the person reading it is both fluent in Greek and is going to always follow along verse by verse with a Greek text of the Byzantine text type every time he reads the RSV (keeping in mind that most commonly available Greek texts of the NT are not of the Byzantine text type.)

                • Peter A. Papoutsis says

                  But all I have really ever asked for from you is an acknowledgement that the biggest problems with the RSV (and all other non-KJV based translations) are that the Greek text from which it is translated is wrong — and that the greatest strength of the KJV (and the handful of translations derived from it) is that the Greek text from which it is translated is, unlike the RSV, virtually identical to the Byzantine lectionary.

                  RESPONSE: Edward I agree that the Greek NT text used by the KJV and the NKJV are based on the Textus Receptus that is a Byzantine Text type that is very VERY close to the Official Green NT text we use in Church. That I agree with you 100%. The RSV does fail in this regard. This is why Fr. Hopko would only recommend using the RSV WITH THE TEXTUAL NOTES listed at the bottom of the page. The KJV and the NKJV do not have this problem. So yes I agree with you. In fact, I think on this point I have always agreed with you.

                  You can’t translate something correctly when whole words, phrases, and verses are excised completely from the Greek text because the RSV translators believed, as a matter of principle, that when in doubt, the Byzantine text is WRONG. It isn’t a matter of correcting the translation, it is a matter of, “wait a minute, why is half of that verse missing?” There is nowhere in existence a printed copy of the RSV New Testament that puts back in all of the parts of the Byzantine text that the RSV translators removed — in fact, by definition, any such text wouldn’t actually be an RSV. But again, no-one has done such a revision, so there is no point in recommending a “corrected RSV.”

                  You are essentially correct in the way you phrase it, but the excluded parts are in the variant footnotes of the RSV New Testament. Now the 1971 text of the RSV and the 1949(?) text of the RSV NT actually do have a number of the later excluded text included in the text. However, not all, and NOT in the second edition of the RSV New Testament that is part of the NOAB with Expanded Apocrypha. However, the excluded texts are in the variant reading footnotes.

                  Now are the KJV and NKJV easier and more in accordance with the Church’s Official Greek NT YES, absolutely. This is why I have argued that we should correct the RSV NT according to the Official Greek NT text as used in our Church AND change some of the English translations that are inaccurate. The Gospel According to St. John Ch. 2 Wedding of Cana section needs correction. It actually needs correction in both the RSV, KJV and the NKJV.

                  I actually have an email sitting around in my email achieves where an Oxford editor associated with the New English Translation of the Septuagint actually told me, when I asked him about a corrected English translation according to our canonical texts) that a corrected RSV NT and English Translation of the Greek Septuagint (a more church friendly version as opposed to NETS) was something Oxford was think about doing, but did not know if that would happen anytime soon.

                  So to recommend the RSV’s use for Orthodox Christians is simply irresponsible, unless the person reading it is both fluent in Greek and is going to always follow along verse by verse with a Greek text of the Byzantine text type every time he reads the RSV (keeping in mind that most commonly available Greek texts of the NT are not of the Byzantine text type.)

                  Ok on this I disagree. Instead of trying to argue this point to you myself I would recommend you watch this: Reading the Bible from an Orthodox Perspective

                  Take care Edward.


                  • In fact, I think on this point I have always agreed with you.

                    I would hope so, but this is the very first time that you have said so. I appreciate your finally acknowledging this crucial point.

                    This is why Fr. Hopko would only recommend using the RSV WITH THE TEXTUAL NOTES listed at the bottom of the page.

                    Fine, but how many people have heard Fr. Hopko’s instructions? This is the first time in all of our conversations that you have added this crucial caveat — you have only said that Greeks know to correct the text on their own (a dubious assertion). My Greek priests had advanced eductional degrees (one had a doctorate), were born and raised in Greece, and were fully and impressively bilingual. I heard one of them ad lib a correction to the RSV GOA Gospel one time. Otherwise, they just read the RSV as is and let the contradictions with the Greek they had just finished reading stand. The folks in the pews will correct it in their head? Really? Either they know Greek so well that they won’t pay attention to the English, or if English is their first language and their Greek isn’t that good, they won’t know that the English is wrong.

                    Additionally, only certain editions of the RSV have these footnotes — nor do these footnotes identfy which variant readings are from the Byzantine text-type, and which are from other manuscripts. And the footnotes generally say that these Byzantine variants are not as old or reliable as the reading in the main body of the RSV text.

                    Reading the RSV in any online version — including the GOA website? You won’t see any footnotes. Nor are there footnotes in the RSV Gospels or Apostols that are used in Greek churches. Relying on footnotes to carry the text is a precarious business.

                    Add to that the fact that most people probably won’t realize the difference between the RSV and NRSV — those footnotes aren’t there for the most part in the NRSV. I realize that the NRSV is a separate issue, but we are talking about the vast majority of people who don’t know one translation from another.

                    This is why I have argued that we should correct the RSV NT according to the Official Greek NT text as used in our Church

                    I would be interested in seeing such a revision, but again, since it doesn’t exist, recommending the RSV as it currently stands is irresponsible, in my opinion, since just from a textual standpoint one has to know which foonote readings to stick back in (again, if one even has the footnotes available). And I really highly doubt that such a revision will ever be done. Why? Because the liberal Protestant world has moved on to far more radical translations, and the GOA and the liberal parts of the OCA are going to follow. A lot of American Orthodox have made peace with the NKJV (which I believe is textually superior to the RSV, but grossly inferior to it from an English language standpoint,) traditionalists are going to continue to use the KJV or KJV revisions (which require very little revision compared to what the RSV would require, and are thus easier to produce). Who would actually be demanding a revised Revised Standard Version? I don’t think there is any demand that would drive a project like that.

                    And now that you have finally acknowledged the severe textual problems with the RSV (by far the most crucial point — there is no point continuing until one has addressed that), one cannot talk about revising the Revised Standard Version without addressing the grammatical elephant in the room — the consistent and intentional mistranslation of the second person pronouns from the first verse of Genesis through the last verse of revelation. That is a gash of shame across the RSV that renders it a laughingstock to any serious translator. The NKJV may be unspeakably ugly (and share little if anything with the KJV that it claims for parentage) — but at least it has the underlying text right, and while the choice to go with modern English (the only language I know of where it is literally impossible to translate the original Greek properly by distinguishing between plural and singular) is unfortunate, the NKJV at least can be grammatically defended in its consistent use of second person pronouns. The RSV usage simply cannot be defended grammatically. But as I have pointed out from the beginning, that was not a concern — the RSV translators never intended the RSV to be a permanent translation, but only a transitional object before they could move on to translations (like the NRSV) that were far more radical, both textually and in the style of English used.

                    • Peter A. Papoutsis says

                      Fr. Hopko has been saying I have been saying from at least the mid 80s to today in his books, you tube videos and podcasts on Ancient Faith radio.

                      My spiritual father taught me and many Greek Orthodox of my generation what I have previously said to you, and previously said BEFORE you. I am sorry you did not read it.

                      I see you did not comment on the video I sent you of Prof. Jeanie Constantelou’s presentation. Oh well.


            • Peter A. Papoutsis says

              While we engaging in this somewhat “kooky” discussion, to use the Good Bishop’s words, check this out from the Synod of Jerusalem (1672):
              Question 1

              Should the Divine Scriptures be read in the vulgar tongue [common language] by all Christians?

              No. Because all Scripture is divinely-inspired and profitable {cf. 2 Timothy 3:16}, we know, and necessarily so, that without [Scripture] it is impossible to be Orthodox at all. Nevertheless they should not be read by all, but only by those who with fitting research have inquired into the deep things of the Spirit, and who know in what manner the Divine Scriptures ought to be searched, and taught, and finally read. But to those who are not so disciplined, or who cannot distinguish, or who understand only literally, or in any other way contrary to Orthodoxy what is contained in the Scriptures, the Catholic Church, knowing by experience the damage that can cause, forbids them to read [Scripture]. Indeed, tt is permitted to every Orthodox to hear the Scriptures, that he may believe with the heart unto righteousness, and confess with the mouth unto salvation {Romans 10:10}. But to read some parts of the Scriptures, and especially of the Old [Testament], is forbidden for these and other similar reasons. For it is the same thing to prohibit undisciplined persons from reading all the Sacred Scriptures, as to require infants to abstain from strong meats.

              Question 2

              Are the Scriptures plain to all Christians that read them?

              If the Divine Scriptures were plain to all Christians that read them, the Lord would not have commanded such as desired to obtain salvation to search them; {John 5:39} and Paul would have said without reason that God had placed the gift of teaching in the Church; {1 Corinthians 13:28} and Peter would not have said of the Epistles of Paul that they contained some things hard to be understood. {2 Peter 3:16} It is evident, therefore, that the Scriptures are very profound, and their sense lofty; and that they need learned and divine men to search out their true meaning, and a sense that is right, and agreeable to all Scripture, and to its author the Holy Spirit.

              Certainly, those that are regenerated [in Baptism] must know the faith concerning the Trinity, the incarnation of the Son of God, His passion, resurrection, and ascension into the heavens. Yet what concerns regeneration and judgment — for which many have not hesitated to die — it is not necessary, indeed impossible, for them to know what the Holy Spirit has made apparent only to those who are disciplined in wisdom and holiness.
              Question 3

              What Books do you call Sacred Scripture?

              Following the rule of the Catholic Church, we call Sacred Scripture all those which Cyril [Lucaris] collected from the Synod of Laodicea, and enumerated, adding to Scripture those which he foolishly and ignorantly, or rather maliciously, called Apocrypha; specifically, “The Wisdom of Solomon,” “Judith,” “Tobit,” “The History of the Dragon” [Bel and the Dragon], “The History of Susanna,” “The Maccabees,” and “The Wisdom of Sirach.” For we judge these also to be with the other genuine Books of Divine Scripture genuine parts of Scripture. For ancient custom, or rather the Catholic Church, which has delivered to us as genuine the Sacred Gospels and the other Books of Scripture, has undoubtedly delivered these also as parts of Scripture, and the denial of these is the rejection of those. And if, perhaps, it seems that not always have all of these been considered on the same level as the others, yet nevertheless these also have been counted and reckoned with the rest of Scripture, both by Synods and by many of the most ancient and eminent Theologians of the Catholic Church. All of these we also judge to be Canonical Books, and confess them to be Sacred Scripture.

              So two questions of my own: 1.) The Synod of Jerusalem makes it very clear that the canonical scriptures (LXX and Official GNT) are not to be translated in the vulgar tongue and if to be read to NOT be read by the un-disciplined and those lacking wisdom. Sooooo, what do we do with this pronouncement?

              2.) what are “The Maccabees?” 1st and 2nd Maccabees or 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Maccabees, or 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th Maccabees? I can guess 4th Maccabees is out but what about 3rd Maccabees? Let me know what you think while Fritz continues his meltdown and love affair with an English Translation that according to this Synod should never have been made along with the RSV no less.

              Let the games continue, oh and Fritz “Shibboleth!”

              Kinda like screaming “Felix!” at a ball game. Michael Stankovich will get that one.


              • George Michalopulos says

                Your Grace, Peter, et al: for what it’s worth, the sounds “tch” and “sch” (and “shch”) do not exist in spoken Greek but instead are rendered as “ts” and “s”. That much is true. However in many Greek dialects they are vocalized. On my mother’s side, I’m Imbrian and we had no difficulty at all in saying these sounds.

                Some of course will interject that that’s because Imbros and Tenedos became Turkish after the Treaty of Lausanne in 1923 and the slow ethnic cleansing of the Greek population started, however my grandparents and their relatives started leaving Imbros right around that time and had no contact with Turkish people, authorities and schooling. (My grandfather for example settled in France immediately after the Great War.)

                Now, some of our relatives did remain but they left in 1967 or so so they had forty years of Turkish indoctrination. When they came to America, we had no problem understanding them as they spoke Greek in the same manner as my grandparents (which had been imparted to my mother, her cousins and their children).

                I don’t mean to get too arcane here and I realize I didn’t answer the question of how Grecophone readers would have vocalized “Shibboleth”, all I’m saying is that it’s not inconceivable that they could. I also realize that this begs a further question and that is, why does written Greek have this defect which makes it unknowable to print the sound “sh”? Any thoughts?

                • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

                  Why call that a “further question,” George? It’s not! I asked Mr Papoutsis how Shibboleth was recorded in the Septuagint! Everybody knows that new arrivals from Greece say things like tsorts for church, and they have an “artsibitsop!” Of course, Papoutsis being the Grecomane he is has consistently avoided the question, because he knows the answer and it reflects an inadequacy in the Septuagint not found in English or German or Russian Bibles! Of course, as you point out, some Greeks, especially those with lots of contact with TURKS have learned to use such sounds…for example, they ave no problem calling “kafejee!”, but they still write it defectively as kafetsi!
                  The Cyrillic alphabet gets over the defect in the Greek alphabet by raiding the Hebrew alphabet for their J, ch, sh, and shch letters!

                • George, I don’t know about you, but if I was stuck in a elevator with Peter A. and the Bishop debating the Septuagint, and how Shibboleth is pronounced or written in Greek, truly I might shoot myself.

                  But in other news, The Greek Orthodox Church of American is losing parish members in record numbers. Gee I wonder why?

              • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

                Peter, don’t you think the “vulgar” tongue to which they refer is demotiki?
                Peter why do you imagine I have anything but respect for the LXX? I revere it, Peter! Get that through your head And I have never, evr denounced it, a false witness against me you repeat over and over. I HAVE NEVER EVER DENOUNCED THE SEPTUAGiNT.
                PETER! Answer this: in the book of Judges (KJV) CHAPTER 12, VERSE 6, we read, “Then they said unto him, Say now Shibboleth: and he said Sibboleth: for he could not frame it to pronounce it right, Then they took him and slew him at the passages of the Jordan…” How does your Septuagint surpass the KJV IN RENDERING THE HEBREW WORD SHIBBOLETH??”
                Still waiting, PATIENTLY. more patiently than your false witness deserves!
                I’d like you to learn that the KJV IS A TRANSLATION. The RSV was never touted as a translation at all, but as a Revised VERSION of existing translations. I hope you understand that!

                • Peter A. Papoutsis says

                  You revere the LXX while denouncing it. Hey as an Orthodox Bishop that hates all things Greek that is your problem not mine. So if you feel safe in your Hebrew/KJV please continue. At 83 I cannot change your hatred and bigotry for Greek and Greeks. That is between you and God.

                  However, for what it is worth I do hope you let go of your hatred before you pass and stand before our God in Judgment over this. Also, just be aware that your Shibboleth argument won’t work at that point.

                  However there is still time. I suggest you use your time wisely.


                • …don’t you think the “vulgar” tongue to which they refer is demotiki?

                  That was my first thought. If they really believed that only Greek was allowed, they would be condemning the Slavs and the Georgians, as well as retroactively condemning Latin from during the time that it was a part of the undivided Church.

                  Hm, Vladyka… maybe the Synod of Jerusalem can be appealed to when trying to get rid of the kinds of modern English translations that are in universal use in the GOA and in parts of the OCA??? And the “Orthodox Study Bible?” They all unquestionably use a vulgar form of the English language…

                  • Peter A. Papoutsis says

                    Well Edward even though you are being snark nevertheless you may be right. The council wanted no translations even the KJV made by heretical Anglicans and Puritans.


                    • Were they condemning translations done by saints into Slavonic, Georgian, and Latin? Would they condemn translations into liturgical Romanian and Arabic?

                      And the KJV was not a Puritan translation (everyone knows that would be the Geneva Bible.) It was indeed done by generally high church Anglicans (it’s immediate precursor of which it is a revision was known as the Bishops Bible) in an age of deep faith that, while in error by Orthodox lights was infinitely closer to Orthodoxy than anything found in the 20th century that produced the RSV (agnostics) and the NJKV (low-church American evangelicals). Consider Metropolitan Anthony Krapovitsky’s warm relations with 19th c Anglicans and Patriarch St. Tikhon’s hopes for bringing Anglicans to the Orthodox faith.

                      You can condemn all English translations by (misreading, I believe) the Jerusalem Council and say that we all need to learn Greek — that would at least make some sort of weird sense.

                      But to condemn the KJV as the work of heretics while embracing the RSV and NKJV? Definitely a case of picking at a speck while ignoring a log. Silly and stubborn.

                    • Peter A. Papoutsis says

                      Edward says:
                      November 1, 2016 at 12:43 am

                      Were they condemning translations done by saints into Slavonic, Georgian, and Latin? Would they condemn translations into liturgical Romanian and Arabic?

                      RESPONSE: Don’t know that’s why I was asking.

                      And the KJV was not a Puritan translation (everyone knows that would be the Geneva Bible.) It was indeed done by generally high church Anglicans (it’s immediate precursor of which it is a revision was known as the Bishops Bible) in an age of deep faith that, while in error by Orthodox lights was infinitely closer to Orthodoxy than anything found in the 20th century that produced the RSV (agnostics) and the NJKV (low-church American evangelicals). Consider Metropolitan Anthony Krapovitsky’s warm relations with 19th c Anglicans and Patriarch St. Tikhon’s hopes for bringing Anglicans to the Orthodox faith.

                      RESPONSE: Yes and no. Puritans were on the committees, and did get some of what they wanted in the KJV. The 400th Year anniversary telecast by the BBC actually documents this, as well as highlighting the many diaries of some of the KJV translators, which some were in fact Puritans. Anglicans were still heretics and the KJV is still heretical. Even in St. Pauls letters they miss the changing of tenses between “I am Saved” to “Being or becoming saved” to “will be saved” – future tense to support the heresy of Justification by faith alone.

                      You can condemn all English translations by (misreading, I believe) the Jerusalem Council and say that we all need to learn Greek — that would at least make some sort of weird sense.

                      RCC said the same thing about Latin and still does. In fact, Greek is still the exclusive theological language of our Church. You cannot read anything or examine anything else in establishing dogma and/or doctrine in Orthodoxy, not even the KJV, and this is just my opinion, this is what the Council was trying to protect. People reading the Bible in their own vernacular (Vulgar?) languages and coming up with new and crazy doctrines like Predestination, Limited atonement, etc.

                      But to condemn the KJV as the work of heretics while embracing the RSV and NKJV? Definitely a case of picking at a speck while ignoring a log. Silly and stubborn.

                      RESPONSE: I didn’t condemn but specifically, especially in the past on this blog, to use and continue using:

                      1.) KJV w/Apoc.
                      2.) RSV w/Exp. Apoc.
                      3.) OSB (NKJV).

                      But that all of them need to be corrected against our canonical scriptures: the Septuagint and Official Greek NT of the Church.


      • M. Stankovich says

        It seems to me that “we Orthodox” have been through this same silliness previously. As I described the last time you raised this issue of “daily bread,” it is a simple, common, frequently employed idiomatic phrase by the ancient Greeks – τὸν ἄρτον (and I’m presuming even you will not argue this is some form of bread) – combined with τὸν ἐπιούσιον (derived from ἐπὶ τὴν οὖσαν, meaning for the day, or better, for one day), which St. Chrysostom describes as:

        What is ” daily bread”? That for one day. For because He had said thus, “Your will be done in earth as it is in heaven,” but was discoursing to men encompassed with flesh, and subject to the necessities of nature, and incapable of the same impassibility with the angels:— while He enjoins the commands to be practised by us also, even as they perform them; He condescends likewise, in what follows, to the infirmity of our nature. Thus, “perfection of conduct,” says He, “I require as great, not however freedom from passions; no, for the tyranny of nature permits it not: for it requires necessary food.” But mark, I pray you, how even in things that are bodily, that which is spiritual abounds. For it is neither for riches, nor for delicate living, nor for costly raiment, nor for any other such thing, but for bread only, that He has commanded us to make our prayer. And for “daily bread,” so as not to “take thought for the morrow.” (Matthew 6:34) Because of this, He added, ” daily bread,” that is, bread for one day. And not even with this expression is He satisfied, but adds another too afterwards, saying, “Give us this day;” so that we may not, beyond this, wear ourselves out with the care of the following day. For that day, the interval before which you know not whether you shall see, wherefore do you submit to its cares? This, as He proceeded, he enjoined also more fully, saying, “Take no thought for the morrow.” He would have us be on every hand unencumbered and winged for flight, yielding just so much to nature as the compulsion of necessity requires of us.

        Commentary of the Gospel of Matthew, PG 57, Homily 19, 8

        The Evangelist Mark ends the phrase with δὸς [give] ἡμῖν [us] σήμερον [today] (Mk. 9:13), while the Evangelist Luke ends the phrase with δίδου [give] ἡμῖν [us] τὸ καθ’ [each] ἡμέραν [day] (Lk. 11:3).

        You seem to promote a “controversy” that occurred only in the west, such that this “bread” could be something more, and worthy of your capitalization. Kindly read St. Chrysostom again: “For it is neither for riches, nor for delicate living, nor for costly raiment, nor for any other such thing, but for bread only, that He has commanded us to make our prayer. And for “daily bread,” so as not to “take thought for the morrow.” (Matthew 6:34) Because of this He added, ” daily bread,” that is, bread for one day.” τὸν ἐπιούσιον is simply about “sufficiency” and “sustenance” in the ancient Greek, and you are dabbling in serious liabilities by suggesting it is “what we need most.” The Lord was not referring to mana, nor the Eucharistic, but τὸν ἄρτον, a bread made from wheat flour, and one day’s worth at that.

        • Monk James says

          Michael Stankovich is mistaken here, especially in his thought that epiousion has anything to do with ‘he coming day. The grammar and usual apocopations of greek words do not support this, not to mention that the word can’t refer to the table bread of today and tomorrow at the same time. It’s odd that he didn’t notice this.

          Of all the holy fathers whose writings I have consulted regarding this vexatious hapax legomenon in the scriptures, this once-only used word epiousion, only St John Chrysostom and St Maximus the Confessor think that it means ‘daily’, so they are in the minority, and I am certain that they are mistaken.

          We must also consider that the venerable Latin and Church Slavonic translations of St Matthew’s gospel avoid ‘daily’, and reach for a meaning similar to ‘more than essential’, hence my ‘Bread we most need.’ Were a rendering so easy as ‘daily’ available to ancient translators, they would have used it, but they did not.

          • M. Stankovich says

            In translating a bit of St. Basil the Great, I was led to his reference to Origen, who referenced St. Gregory of Nyssa, who led me back to St. Chrysostom, which in turn led me to – of all things – Origen’s correction of my error in the derivation of the term ἐπιούσιον. It is not derived from ἐπὶ τὴν οὖσαν as I had believed – which is an error in the translation of the LXX – but rather a derivation of ἐπι and οὐσία, which makes a significant difference. So I start again…

            It is important to note that the Evangelist first reports that, after fasting forty days and forty nights, the Lord experienced physical hunger [ὕστερον ἐπείνασεν] (Matt. 4:30); and when confronted by the devil, he emphatically stated, “Man does not live [ζήσεται] by bread [ἄρτῳ] alone.” (Matt. 4:4). This obviously is consistent with an argument for bread as “sustenance & subsistence.” Nevertheless, what Origen wrote that influenced Sts. Basil & Gregory was to accept St. Chrysostom’s understanding of ἐπιούσιον ἄρτον as a physical bread necessary for the physical body, but also as spiritual bread for the nourishment of the οὐσία, substance, of the soul. And in the end, St John of Damascus leaves it completely open as the bread: ἐπιούσιον ἢ τὸν μέλλοντα [that which is to be destined/that which is to come] or τὸν πρὸς συντήρησιν τῆς οὐσίας [substance] ἡμῶν λαμβανόμενον (i.e. being received for our subsistence/sustenance). So, It would seem that the best translation would convey the dual concept of necessity sustaining the soul and body, and I stand corrected. I do not believe it is adequately conveyed in Monk James phrasing, and it is questionable as is.

            Finally, I would point out that your translation of the phrase ἐλθάτω ἡ βασιλεία σου “Let/May Your kingdom come,” as “May Your reign begin” does not reflect the fact ἐλθάτω is from the aorist imperative active of the verb ἔρχομαι, to come, and not ἄρχομαι, to begin, nor Ἄρτι ἐγένετο (as in now have come cf. Rev. 12:10) nor ἐγγίζω is at hand/draws near. Honestly, I can only imagine you translated such a familiar, such a common & frequently used word in every language common to the Orthodox people, βασιλεία, as “reign” rather than kingdom in the Lord’s Prayer as somehow “correct” was simply to be annoying.

            • I can’t speak for anyone else, but in my corner of Protestantism growing up, it was clearly understood by all that “daily bread” had multiple meanings that covered the full gamut of whatever we need — physical and spiritual. I recall a devotional series that I believe is still in existence entitled “Daily Bread.”

              I doubt that Orthodox Christians are any less insightful — although there is not perhaps enough teaching on the many points in Scripture where Christ speaks in ways that have many layers of meaning. I somehow suspect that it would be just as helpful to have some exposition for Greeks who are praying it in the original wording.

              It cannot be clearer that the Church never understood this to be some sort of code word referring only to the Eucharist. Had she done so, the Holy Spirit would have ensured that the practice of daily Holy Communion would be forever universal. It makes no sense to be repeatedly asking for something “today” which one knows one will not be able to receive “today.”

              It clearly entails multiple meanings, literal and metaphorical — although ultimately one meaning — “that which we need” (not that which we want). Therefore, “daily bread” does quite nicely as a poetic reflection of the poetic original. The rest is exegesis — just as it is in Greek and Slavonic.

              • Peter A. Papoutsis says

                100% correct. You and Michael are correct.


              • M. Stankovich says

                I absolutely agree with you on this point, Edward. These are “academic,” exegetical points, and the Fathers help us understand the fullness of the depth and wisdom of the Scripture, setting the context as a Patristic task – “joining with the Fathers before us” – and not an individual task disconnected from the Patristic mission. In other words, if you would be so confident as to declare, for example, that St. Chrysostom is incorrect, it would be my expectation that you be prepared to defend this position with something beyond vagaries. Further, to not appreciate, as you say, the “poetic reflection” of a very ancient Greek phrase, “daily bread,” and to translate βασιλεία as “reign” rather than “kingdom” when both words have been custom since the 17th century is arbitrary nonsense and deserves a re-read of Tolstoi’s The Three Hermits.

            • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

              Oh well, some native Americans think the future is behind us since we can’t see it, while the past is right there in front of us–visible. Good luck trying to turn THEM into LXX-reading Grecophones!

              • Peter A. Papoutsis says

                Actually, the ideal English version of tge Bible would have the LXX as its base text, with all major Hebrew variants listed in footnotes for the OT.

                For the NT we should have the Official Greek New Testament used in our Church with the three variants (TR, Majority, and Critical text types) listed.

                Some version like the OSB and the NJB kinda sorta do this, but NEVER fully and properly, but we’re going in that direction and failed.

                Currently the Orthodox Study Bible is our best choice for this project, but it needs massive revision, intense editorial review, and a through going overy of its notes.

                This can be done, and is more than possible. Now that the OSB is out and has already been revised once I firmly believe it was be revised again and properly corrected and amended.

                We should tell Ancient Faith Publishing to get a firm handle on the copyright, assemble their team of translators/revisers and begin work immediately. This is not an impossible task aND one that is greatly needed by English speaking Orthodox Christians.


            • Hell freezeth over once again and I am forced to agree with Stankovich on something. “Daily bread” is indeed in reference to the Eucharist and “kingdom come” is a better translation than “kingdom begin”. Every single word in the New Testament, not just the Lord’s Prayer, should be read in light of the one needful thing – theosis, partaking of the divine nature. The kingdom, as Christ announced, has already “begun” and the Eucharist is both a memorial and a mystery both signifying and actualizing our participation in the Kingdom of Heaven (which is theosis, the Pearl of Great Price, et al.). It is both here and now and also becoming/coming, depending on ones level of spiritual discernment.

              • “Daily bread” is indeed in reference to the Eucharist

                But not only the Eucharist, as St. John Chrysostom’s commentary demonstrates. It would be hard to maintain that it even primarily means the Eucharist, because of the “this day” or “today” in the petition. At the time Christ taught his disciples to pray that prayer, the Eucharist had not even been instituted by Christ. And Christ, through the the Holy Spirit, did not institute daily communion as normative in the Church.

                • Monk James says

                  But ‘daily’ isn’t in the Matthew text, not at all, and that’s the text we use in our prayers and in the Divine Liturgy. ‘Edward’ might ike to know that — if possible — the DL is served EVERY DAY in monasteries, and some of the monks and nuns actually do participate in Holy Communion every day, but that wonderful opportunity is NOT dependent on a mistranslation of epiousion. It’s just what we do to keep close to Christ.

                  RC practice of ‘daily communion’, though, is based on their distorted version of ‘Our Father’, in which the (mostly otherwise yet not altogether accurate) latin scriptural text of Matthew is interpolated and replaced by a word from Luke, and ‘quotidianum’ (daily) is — completely without justification — substituted for ‘supersubstantialem’ (more than essential).

                  Most of our english-language translations of ‘Our Father’ are deeply affected by this odd adjustment in latin liturgy, but it isn’t — and must notcontinue to be — a problem for the Orthodox, since we use the Matthew text just as it is: ‘Give us today the Bread we most need.’

                  • M. Stankovich says

                    It seems to me that you continue to miss the point: Why even use the ancient phrase ἐπιούσιον ἄρτον if it is of no consequence? St. Nektarios of Aegina argues that it appeared that some received more manna than others at the morning collection, but Moses pointed out that the Lord only left what he promised, “that which was sufficient for a man and his family, for that day.” So says St. Chrysostom and so concur the Holy Fathers. But in Origen, the Fathers also agreed that ἐπιούσιον transcended physical sustenance and spoke to substance, to the soul, and our salvation, expressed in the words, “May Your kingdom come,” and “May Your will be done.” As St. Nektarios points out, mana sustained us in the wilderness, as the Lord promised, and “bread” will sustain in the interim; the Eucharist is always celebrated “in the Kingdom” at the Master’s table (as we are told in the 9th Ode of the Kanon of the Matins of Great and Holy Friday, sung at the Liturgy of Great and Holy Thursday: “Come, of faithful, let us enjoy the Master’s hospitality, the Banquet of Immortality! In the upper chamber with uplifted minds, let us accept the exalted word of the Word, whom we Magnify!”), and we await that day when “God may be all in all.” (1 Cor. 15:28) Is this not the point of the Lord’s Prayer? ἔρχου Κύριε! Come Lord! (Rev. 20:22) Given that we have never have the theological conflicts of the west, I reiterate that it continues to strike me as petty and arbitrary to discount & dismiss hundreds of years of the use of of the phrase “daily bread,” as “wrong” and now justify it by dismissing the words of the Evangelist Luke, τὸ καθ’ [each] ἡμέραν [day] as “unjustified.” By whom? You? To say that, as Edward has noted, the faithfulness to the ancient expression “daily bread” is not accurately & and poetically conveyed in this translation is marvelously pretentious, and quite obviously, no Father critiques the English translation, and such a literal one at that. Certainly we pray for the daily sustenance, as St. Chrysostom states, “not to “take thought for tomorrow.,” as the Lord promises, but what we “need most” is “Your kingdom come!”

        • Stankovich, how passe of you to quote St. John Chrysostom on an Orthodox forum. We all know that St. John didn’t have nearly the knowledge of Greek or the Scriptures that Monk James has!

          • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

            Monk James is stuck in bad mid 20th century linguistics. You’re not going to get him to let go!

        • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

          M. Stankovich, we know that when we hear someone going on about “epiousion” versus “daily,” or going on about “nous”, or about “phronema,” we are going into religion as a HOBBY.

          • Peter A. Papoutsis says

            Or Shibboleth. Yes I agree.

            • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

              “Peter A. Papoutsis!” Do you know anyone “going on and on about “Shibboleth?” The Jews went on and on about Shibboleth, as God commanded, but I’ve never gone on and on about it. I have asked you one question about the SEPTUAGINT’S treatment of the word, which could have been answered by you, thus obviating any necessity to repeat the word here; nevertheless, you repeatedly refuse to answer that question, leading to the needless repetition of the word, as you just did above, in another apparently impotent attempt to avoid answering the question about the Septuagint! Just answer the question, and you need never again hear or read the word uttered by me! Or maybe you CAN’T answer the question? If so, I apologize: I too would be ashamed!

              • Peter A. Papoutsis says

                I did answer it Fritz. Maybe you can answer me as to why your Metropolitan is condoning the GOAA hierarchy giving an award to an uber Abortionist? Why was he there? Did he condone it? Why don’t you send him an email and ask him? Let us know. Ok.


                • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

                  “Fritz,” though obviously meant by the sensitive Peter A. Papoutsis to be a kind of response to imagined slights by me, is not nearly so pejorative as the more apt nickname, “Fitz!” “Fitz” is the Norman French version of “fils.” It was used in Ireland to identify and ridicule bastards born of Normans or Anglo-Normans who were deemed unworthy of an “O’ ” or a “Mac” or a “Mc.”
                  Does anybody know why Peter A. Papoutsis is asking me to tell him why Metropolitan Tikhon did something? Why or how should I know why Metropolitan Tikhon thinks or does anything? Or why he was anyplace? Is it a sign of good mental hygiene on the part of Peter A. Papoutsis to ask me FIRST: Why Metropolitan Tikhon condoned an event, and THEN to ask IF he did condone it?
                  Did Metropolitah Tikhon perhaps ignore some email sent to him by Peter A. Papoutsis asking him if he condoned a statement by Archbishop Demetrios? Did Peter A. Papoutsis send an email to Archbishop Demetrios asking him why he gave an award to Mr Cuomo? I ask him: Why don’t you send him an email and ask him?
                  Let us know!

                  • Peter A. Papoutsis says

                    Good old bait a switch my good bishop good old bait and switch. Keep up doing what your doing, which is?

                    Btw, Metropolitan Tikhon is Your Hierarch not mine, AND you are the Bishop not me. Why don’t you do your job? So I will ask you again YOU ASK HIM AND REPORT BACK TO US. However, if you are too scared to ask I understand you have not impressed me with your courage, just your sarcasm.


                    • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

                      Any time I call Mr. Peter A, Papoutsis to account for his statements, he retorts “Bait and Switch! Bait and Switch!.”
                      Metropoltan Tikhon, contrary to what Mr. Peter A. Papoutsis writes, is not my Hierarch. He is God’s hierarch, and the hierarch elected by the current members of the Holy Synod to preside at their meetings. I am not “THE” bishop, but a retired bishop whose only apostolic outreach is a participation in internet fora as time and my 84 years permit.
                      Mr. Peter A. Papoutsis states I have not impressed him with my courage. I don’t care IN THE SLIGHTEST to learn why Metropolitan Tikhon attended any meeting anywhere any time. It would certainly not require any courage to call him. What an idea! Thank you for being impressed by my sarcasm; in that connection, my favorite Gospel example of sarcasm is that used by the man born blind who was healed by Christ. In exasperation, he finally asked the Pharisees why they persisted in their repetitious questions about the person that healed him: “DO YOU WANT TO BE HIS DISCIPLES?” Wonderful, generic, blessed sarcasm—much better than calling them fools outright!

                    • Bishop Tikhon, Thank you for sharing your biblical sarcasm. No sarcasm intended. This is the original reason I came upon this blog. To go a little deeper into the ways of our church and the teaching and ways of our Lord. We can all learn from sharing our own perspectives, life experiences, and of course our depth of knowledge of the good book. I am guilty as many others on this blog, of simply reducing this blog to a political finger pointing contest. While finger pointing has it’s time and place towards our political and religious leaders, and even those here on Monomakhos , as we all should be held accountable, finger pointing has become 90% of our posts.

                      Please share more religious insights sarcastic or not, none of us are too old to learn the wisdom of our Lord, your Grace.

                    • PETER A PAPOUTSIS, AND BISHOP TIKHON! If I had the horrible misfortune of being stuck in a broken elevator, with the two of you debating over the Septuagint, and the pronouncement of Shibboleth, I would shoot myself in the head. Perhaps you two, can let it be, and reflect upon:
                      “Even if we have thousands of acts of great virtue to our credit, our confidence in BEING HEARD MUST BE BASED ON God’s mercy and love for men. Even if we stand at the very summit of virtue, it by mercy that we shall be saved.” Saint John Chrysostom

                    • Peter A. Papoutsis says

                      The Good Bishop states:

                      I don’t care IN THE SLIGHTEST to learn why Metropolitan Tikhon attended any meeting anywhere any time.
                      There in lies the problem and why evil has grown in the world. Thank you again for telling us you don’t care. Although I wonder, did you ever? Did any of you care when we the laity needed you and needed you to care?

                      Oh well at 84 you just care about typing behind a keyboard where it doesn’t cost you anything. Like I said your courage never impressed me. Go to bed Fritz. Give your fingers a rest.

                      I’m done. Good night.


                    • Peter A. Papoutsis says


                      You have to have fun with the good bishop. He live for this stuff. That’s why he’s on here. He enjoys it.

                      Anyway it is getting tedious so I will “give the space” to the good bishop and the Edward and let them enjoy their little love fest. I am done.


                    • PETER A. AGREED. AND THANK YOU

                    • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says

                      “Dino” wrote, “PETER A PAPOUTSIS, AND BISHOP TIKHON! If I had the horrible misfortune of being stuck in a broken elevator, with the two of you debating over the Septuagint, and the pronouncement of Shibboleth, I would shoot myself in the head.”

                      Who is “Dino” and who is Peter A. Papoutsis? When “Dino” wrote “pronouncement of Shibboleth” didn’t he mean pronunciation of Shibboleth? I know of a Dino who was adored by Ernestine, Lili Tomlin’s telephone operator, but he was a fictional creation. I apologize that in order to get an answer to one simple question about LXX transcription of the Hebrew “Shibboleth,” I had to repeat myself interminably about it because otherwise this Peter A. Papoutsis would have never answered the question! Q.E.D. NOW we see that no translation of the Hebrew Old Testament Scriptures is IMMACULATE, no, neither the Septuagint nor the KJV! And the LXX, incidentally calls Cyrus “Christ” (Khriste Mou), while the KJV calls him “anointed.” Both are right, of course.
                      I know that if we don’t return to Hillary vs Donald “Dino” may shoot himself, so that’s IT!

                    • Bishop Tikhon, yes your grace I did mean pronunciation, as you may know many of us with Greek immigrant parents, only heard Greek spoken at home, soo they yea gow. I still sometimes say” close the lights” , instead of” turn off the lights” too. Correct my English whenever you like your Grace, as I’ve told you before we are never too old too learn. Are we? CHRISTIANEMOU.

                      Who am I? Same as you. Sons of The Light, and I still appreciate your religious insight you bring every now and then, even if the payment of such shared insights, come with a insult or two from you. No problem here, I’m a big boy.

                      In regards to Hillary vs Donald, and as I have already told Mike
                      Myers: The Washington Post has reported that Geda The Chinese Prophet Monkey has decided that Trump will win the election. Geda even kissed the cardboard cut out of Trump, in case there was any doubt in his decision. SOO THEYR YIA GOO, CHRISTIANEMOU!

  10. Michael Bauman says

    I don’t doubt that the Church stands in the way of the satanic nihilism that is the core of our political/economy. However it is mostly inadvertent at least here.

    Here, here to the critique of the new calendar.

    Lord forgive us.

    • Peter A. Papoutsis says

      Gotta love this:

      Top Female Evangelical Leaders supports Gay Marriage

      Don’t worry this is just a fad. Let’s go back to giving awards to Abortion loving SSM supporting governors as we Orthodox Christians have nothing to say to any of this. I mean we should care first and foremost about the religious liberty of the EP in Turkey and not worry about our own religious liberty here at home.

      Yup all is good here in good ol’ “Murika.”


  11. His Eminence sure didn’t have any problem accepting relics of St. Vladimir from both ‘communist created’ Macedonia and Montenegro. He even went as far as to acknowledge Met. Timothy of the Macedonian Orthodox Church by full title. Don’t get me wrong, this is nice and a good gesture, but it seems he is talking out of both sides of his mouth here.

    I have a hard time accepting the narrative that communists were sitting in a back room somewhere creating peoples, national identities, and languages out of thin air to annoy monarchists and create a ‘new world order.’

    I mean, that’s what folks in Serbia, Albanians, Bulgaria, Russia, and the US like to believe. This way they have an excuse for their hegemony towards other nations.

  12. Peter, Thank you, We need more posts like this, to remind us what is most important in this life. It’s too easy to let this fallen world drag us down into it’s pit. With so much to piss me off everyday in this election year, you have changed my day for the better today.

  13. George,

    Can I just make the obvious point that this is a picture of Met. Amfilohije, not a hieromonk? And that this is not an essay by the hieromonk, but rather an interview with the metropolitan?


  14. Peter A. Papoutsis says

    Check this out:

    This is how they control you

    The meme has started that Donald Trump is un-American for not saying he would accept the election results. Yeah the MSM wants him to accept a rigged and illegal election. I think not. Guess what boys and girls THIS is what real change looks like. This is the fight and work that is needed to start to make our country great again. Wake up and don’t buy the bs and vote for Trump on Nov. 8.


    • George Michalopulos says

      A little off topic but worth a view:

      • Peter A. Papoutsis says

        I think it is right on topic. Thanks George.


      • I do not agree at all with their pacifism, we’ve been through that. But they do have a point regarding evangelicals enabling the Western war machine. I’ve pointed it out on various occasions as a strange paradox. Conquering the world for feminism, normalization of homosexuality, hedonism, etc. Why would a Christian support such a thing? As to Israel, I have nothing against the Jews. I do believe that they tend to act for their own benefit and “circle the wagons” so to speak. Moreover, they are the “chosen people” of Scripture and play a part in the eschaton, wherein many, if not all, will come to see Jesus Christ as their Messiah.

        However, much blood has been shed over Israel. And they do not always identify the most problematic enemies as first in line. Sunni Muslims are much more detrimental to the health of Christians than any other tribe on earth. That is unfortunate, but true. It is part of their ideology. Their end times are a black/white mirror negative of what we expect as Christians. The same character will be identified as Christ by us who will be identified as the Antichrist by them, and vice versa. I assume a fallen angel is to blame.

        Thus we are stuck with that fight. It may be inevitable. We should try to convert as many as possible. Also, Shiite Islam is more congenial to Christianity because in Shiism there is a moderator in the End Times called the Mahdi, a third party who is “rightly guided”. Shiites we can work with.

        A tragic tale, but that is the hand we have been dealt.

    • Peter Millman says

      Greetings Peter,
      I’m not waiting to vote for Donald J. Trump on November 8th, I’m voting for him today, October 27th. We have early voting in our state. By the way, the lamestream media is in for a rude awakening on November 8th when they have to announce that Donald J. Trump has been elected President of the United States. He is definitely going to win .

  15. Peter A. Papoutsis says

    The MSM bias on display.

  16. Peter A. Papoutsis says

    Well this is it. The election will be held on November 8, 2016. Our country has been through a lot. Our people have been though a lot. So now I think is time to lift our spirits and to remember who we were and who we still are. Time for us to look up and see that the shining city on a hill is not so shiny these days, but that it is still there and can shine again.

    God bless you, God Bless Donald Trump and God Bless The United States of America.

    The Greatness of America

    To Make America Great Again.

  17. SeraphimJerome says

    The Orthodox Church in America is aiding the New World Order! Enough of the phony intellectual arguments!

  18. This is paranoid nonsense. A new world order is only a shift in the balance of power in international relations. Nothing more, nothing less. The Orthodox Church is not standing in the way of any “new world order”, any more than it is standing the way of a reptile people from another dimension.

    Get a grip.

    • Peter A. Papoutsis says

      Really? Shift of power to who Lucifer? Yup that’s right. I have a grip. Tightly around the Gospel. What about you Gavin?


  19. Jan Worstryk says

    Re:the Orthodox Church standing in the way of the New World Order, you can check out the following You Tube Video :ORTHODOX CHRISTIANS REJECT THE FALSE COUNCIL OF KOLYMBARI & GLOBAL RELIGION OF ANTICHRIST
    Direct Link here:

    Important to spread awareness because globalist ‘orthodox’ hierarchs have not revealed the actual decisions of this false council to their flock.
    Instead they have in the official message of the council’s encyclicals spoken rather vaguely about sociopolitical issues-terrorism, refugee crisis, environmentalism etc etc to draw attention away from the official heretical & schismatic decisions themselves and the anticanonical means by which these decisions were and are being implemented – recent threats of excommunication & defrockment etc.

    Following text from above video’s ‘SHOW MORE’ button
    A Talk Given by the Very Reverend & Learned Elder Fr. Savvas Lavriotis in Larisa Greece 20-09-16
    In this video THE DECISIONS OF THE SO-CALLED HOLY & GREAT PAN-ORTHODOX COUNCIL AT KOLYMBARI & THE PAN-HERESY OF ECUMENISM, Athonite monk Fr. Savvas Lavriotis together with Fr. Euthymios Trikaminas & Fr. Paisios Papadopoulos, explains how the above-named Council was summoned to destabilize, dissolve and reform the Ark of Salvation, Christ’s life-giving Orthodox Church, into one more empty vessel of false belief for ushering in the so-called ‘World Messiah’, who only a small flock of faithful Orthodox Christians will recognize as “Deceiver and Antichrist” (2Jn 1:7).

    Ancient banking dynasties steeped in the occult, have fathered a swarm of Masonic institutions like the C.I.A. & the deceptively named ‘World Council of Churches’, that finance the indoctrination and career of religious leaders everywhere, to promote the new global religion called ‘Ecumenism’ – the latest name for the oldest yet most powerful delusion that all spiritual paths are equally capable of leading not only unto salvation, but to the establishment of a New World Order of Global Government, Global Currency and a Global Faith (2Thess 2:3-11).

    At the False Council of Kolymbari, we painfully discover a number of Orthodox Christian hierarchs officially accepting as ‘Churches’, the heretical congregations of Papists, Monophysites and Protestants. Hierarchs such as Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, misleadingly proclaim that Mohammedans, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists and Heathens pray to the same God as Orthodox Christians but under a different name – despite the Biblical assurance that salvation exists in Jesus’ name alone (Acts 4:12). Increasingly delirious from the worldly acclaim awarded for such apostasy, these hierarchs then proceed to seal it completely by ‘solidarity in prayer’ with the aforementioned heretics, antichrists & pagans, in highly publicized acts of worship, universally accessible via mass media and the global internet. Thus do they confirm their visible departure from Church Law, which explicitly forbids all such practices, according to the very First Commandment of Our Lord – namely, “you shall have no other Gods but me, nor shall you bow down or worship them” (Ex 30:3-8), because “all the gods of the pagans are demons” (Ps 96:5).

    The consequences of this apostasy caused by the Pan-Heresy of Ecumenism are clear. Instead of calling down the blessings of the True God of Orthodox Christian Revelation for our deliverance from all affliction, wrath, danger and necessity, the joint prayers of Ecumenists funded by the World Bank to their imaginary ‘One God of All’, have in reality unleashed the Destroyer from the Abyss (Rev 9:11), who has risen up to torment mankind as never before, with the wars and rumours of wars, earthquakes, plagues and famines predicted by Our Saviour (Mk 13:7-8). This is how Ecumenism has over the last 100 years prepared the way for a False Messiah, who will pretend to end our tribulation, by promising us full access to all this world can offer – but in fatal exchange for unholy communion with him, through our bodily acceptance of his mark, without which nobody will be able to buy or sell (Rev 13:16-17).

    In keeping with the divine Tradition of the Holy Fathers, we must cease commemorating and communing with all heretical bishops who accept the schismatic False Council of Kolymbari, until such time as they reject this Council and return to Orthodoxy. In this way by refusing to partake of the same Chalice as them, we protect ourselves from becoming eternally infected by their Pan-Heresy of Ecumenism which the powers of Antichrist have set loose “to deceive if possible, even the elect” (Mk 13:22).

    Instead of following such hierarchs into damnation, let all the true faithful clergy & laity remain inseparably joined to the Orthodox Church established by Our Lord God & Saviour Jesus Christ, the “heavenly pearl of great price” (Mt 14:36), joyfully relinquishing every earthly treasure for His glory and His flock and for His everlasting Kingdom