The Politics of Being Christian

Now, I realize that the word politics has a particularly foul odor.  More so when it is twinned with religion.  I can easily understand why.  After all, many of us came of age during the Vietnam War and Watergate, in which few  public officials covered themselves in honor.  To be frank, Bismarck was correct when he said that one should never look at sausages or laws being made.  It’s not a pretty sight. 

Having said that, there is nothing wrong with politics qua politics. It’s not a dirty word.  The very word itself –politics–comes from the ancient Greek word for “city”, which is polis.  All of us live in a polis.  It may be an actual polity, that is to say a legally incorporated state which is governed by mutually agreed upon laws.  It may simply be a community, whether it be a family, a neighborhood or a monastic brotherhood.  These too are governed by by-laws, customs and whatnot.  

Again, there is nothing wrong with this.  As Christians, we are not exempt from this reality, nor should we be ashamed of it.  Regardless of whether we are Christians but especially if we are Christians, we should not ever believe that we should shirk the responsibilities and obligations which inure to such communities.   We may even be called upon to administer said communities and if need be, take up arms and defend them.  If called upon to do so, we are not to lay aside our Christian sensibilities but rather we should repair to them as much as possible.  As bad as our society may be (or Christendom in general), it is indisputable that the Gospel has elevated those nations which embraced the Gospel, especially in comparison to those societies which are not Christian.  

This is not to say that there is a “Christian” attitude towards the latest municipal bond issue or the rate of taxation.  Term-limits, gun laws, hunting seasons or the duration of the school year are not beneath our consideration either.  To be sure, they are not above our consideration but they are not in any way antithetical to Christian belief.  And, as mentioned, they cannot preclude us from being involved.  To believe otherwise is fanciful (dare I say heretical?).

Now, as Christians we can engage in honest debate over which is the preferred governance of any particular polity.  I won’t get into that here.  What I will say is that God has placed us in a republic, one which is governed by a particular set of laws, whose laws allow us to help govern this republic.  We give thanks to God “for all things”.  Our birthplace, our parents, our friends, and our nation, especially.  It would be the height of ingratitude to turn our backs on our brothers and fellows –on this we can agree.  How then should we turn our backs on our homeland?  It boggles the mind to even think this would be meet and right.  And as St Paul wrote, we are called upon “to pray for those in authority over us”.  He wasn’t speaking only about the Church.  Indeed, he said we should “pray for the emperor”.  And lest we forget, the emperor in question when the Apostle wrote those words was either Caligula or Nero; monsters in every sense of the word. 

Besides the fact that this has been revealed to us by Providence, this is eminently reasonable.

The issue which has vexed some of our correspondents, however, is abortion.  For too long, many Christians have taken a laissez affair approach to this abomination.  I fear though that this is because of lassitude on the part of many.  I can understand why.  After all, the powers-that-be have moved heaven and earth to make sure this barbaric practice remains inviolate.  One obstacle after another is placed in the paths of those who wish to restrict it.  We even have Catholic governors who openly protect actual infanticide.  After awhile, it seems easier to just give up.  

That doesn’t mean, however, that we should.  

One reason I can offer is that in a democratically-constituted republic, one in which the magistrates are placed in power by the citizenry, it is the populace itself which will be called upon to give an account for our indifference.  We Americans are in a unique position in this regard.  Cuba, China and many other nations are ruled either by tyrants or kleptocrats.   The people there have no choice and in truth, are hostages to their elites.

Personally, such indifference strikes an unfortunate chord in me.  St James in his Epistle called out the hypocrisy of those who say they are Christians but do nothing to help a man in need.  I’m sorry but “I will pray for you, Brother” doesn’t cut it.

Consider the Parable of the Good Samaritan.  The poor fellow was set upon by robbers and beaten within an inch of his life.  The priest and the Levite crossed over the street to avoid him.  They had good reason, did they not?  Both were going to Jerusalem to attend to their duties in the Temple.  In doing so, they salved their consciences I suppose.  But it was the Samaritan, an apostate, heretic and mixed-race man who did what was right.  

How then could we, as Christians avoid doing what is right?  

I doubt that abortion will ever be abolished in this land.  But that’s not the point.  After all, Jesus said that “the poor you will always have with you”.  He didn’t mean that we should be indifferent to their plight, or refrain from feeding the hungry or clothing the naked when the opportunity presents itself.  Likewise there will always be prisons; that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t visit the incarcerated.  Ditto, the infirm and the lonely.  In fact, Jesus said what will happen to those of us who avoid coming to the aid of those in need on that dread and awful day when we will be expected to answer for ourselves what was so damn important to keep us from doing what He has asked of us.  It’s not going to be a pretty sight.

Many who are poor are in poverty because of their own unfortunate life choices.  So, too, are those who are in prison.  Likewise, many lonely people, more often than not, have alienated those who have reached out to them at some point in their lives.  That is all beside the point; Christ did not offer us a pass.  We have a duty to help those in need, whether they are Christian or not.

The fetus in his mother’s womb however made no negative life choices, whatsoever.  An unborn child is the epitome of innocence.  To look the other way is not an option.  Not if you’re a Christian.




  1. Father Josiah Trentham speaks to your point with reference to our Present national crisis toward the end of this articulate and heartfelt 28 minute video “ Father ‘Nonessential’”, referring to our Orthodox politician saints and the Fathers on politics. Good to hear a priest speaking for those of us who consider our presence in the Temple and full participation essential.

  2. Ronda Wintheiser says

    Thank you, George. (Gail? 🙂 )

    This post reminds me of something that G.K. Chesterton said.

    “You cannot evade the issue of God . . . if Christianity should happen to be true, then defending it may mean talking about anything or everything. Things can be irrelevant to the proposition that Christianity is false, but nothing can be irrelevant to the proposition that Christianity is true.”

    The “issue” of abortion has been a burning one for me since my son was stillborn in 1984.  Some of my friends wish I would shut up about it already, so I like it when someone has the humility to bring it up so I have an “excuse” to chime in.

    Whenever there is any death that our society decides is worth being up in arms about, many of the people upset about it either aren’t aware, don’t remember, or don’t give a damn that every day we dispose of multitudes more human beings than ever repose in any other tragedy, including war. 

    Each day in the United States, approximately the same number of unborn children die as the number of souls who perished on our soil on September 11, 2001.  They were legally exterminated that day, every day before it since January 22, 1973, and every day after it to the present. 

    They will die tomorrow, as well, in spite of the coronovirus lockdowns.   Abortion is now considered “essential”, and by some, including Michigan Governor Whitmer, “life sustaining.”

    I’ve had many conversations with ostensible Christians who insist that in order to be “pro-life” one must be in favor of delegating to government the care of the poor and the needy because of what Jesus said about it.  What He said about feeding the hungry, sheltering the homeless, clothing the naked, visiting the sick.

    In Romans 12, St. Paul admonished us to associate with the lowly.  To my mind, there are none so lowly as unborn children.  None so hungry, none so homeless, none so naked.  And since the already born poor we *will* always have with us, and since 42% of the *unborn* poor will not be with us for very long at all, it has always seemed to me that they should have the highest priority in terms of our prayers, attention, and efforts.  Most especially since Christ chose to appear among us not as a born person at all, but as an invisible, voiceless zygote.

    If we knew that a child born already was scheduled to be put to death on a certain day in a certain place, we would surely make every effort to prevent that from happening.  We would, in fact, be willing to use physical force to prevent it. 

    We know exactly where these children are exterminated every day, and although we cannot prevent every abortion and save every child, we can save THIS ONE — as the boy explained when asked why he was hurling starfish burning up on the hot sand back into the sea. 

    We can do it by being present on the sidewalks in front of these neighborhood slaughterhouses to speak to the mothers of these children and offer to help them obtain whatever it is they need in order to change their minds.  Maybe for an hour a week.

    One thing that makes abortion difficult for some is the fact that we cannot remember being unborn.  How does one put oneself into the “shoes” of an unborn child?

    In 1983, Phil Keaggy wrote and recorded a song based on Psalm 139 that does it for me.

    THE SURVIVOR lyrics:

    I have heard the slander of many,
    Terror on every side.
    While they took counsel together against me,
    A scheme to take away my life.

    I am small, concealed in this darkness,
    Yearning to see the light, but I may never
    Because of the heartless attempt
    To take away my life.

    Am I safe? The water around me
    Is changing. Is it alright?
    I am burning. Oh what are they doing?
    They want to take away my life.

    But as for me, I trust in Thee,
    Oh, Lord, my times are in Your hands.
    You are my God, deliver me
    From the “solution” that they have planned.

    I’m condemned, completely unwanted,
    I struggle to stay inside,
    Oh, my dear mother, your future is haunted,
    If they succeed and take away my life.

    I’m cut off, exposed in this cold room
    For love and warmth I strive.                                                                                    
    Will you discard me,
    Throw away or starve me,
    And slowly drain away my life?

    But as for me, I trust in Thee,
    Oh, Lord, my times are in Your hands.
    You are my God, deliver me
    From the “solution” that they have planned.

    Desperate hands reach out to embrace me,
    And steal away in the night,
    A gentle voice is speaking assuringly,
    “No one will take away your life!”

    Now I am one apart from the millions
    Fortunate to survive.
    And though I bear in my body these old wounds,
    They didn’t take away my life.

    But as for me, I trust in Thee,
    Oh, Lord, my times are in Your hands.
    You have, my God, delivered me
    From the solution that they had planned…

  3. One day, this period in Western history will be remembered as thoroughly barbaric due to feminism in general and abortion in particular.  For the true story to be told of all the grief:  slaughtered babies, broken families, latchkey kids, high rates of illegitimacy, cycles of poverty and crime . . . one could go on indefinitely.  All to “liberate” women.
    Eventually the patriarchy will again be recognized as objectively legitimate.  When this happens and generations of men take stock of how we have been denied decency, and how children have been used, it will not be pretty.

    • Linda Albert says

      Feminism was an outgrowth of the Free Love movement and cultural revolution and moral revolt of the sixties that was basically another setup by man boys to have unrestrained sexual privilege without responsibility. Women faced sexual harassment at work, life endangering domestic violence from their partners, if they had them and then when those deserted them  the financial and emotional burden of single parenting. This is not by any means to excuse abortion. My tender hearted sister who deeply loved animals and all things small and helpless had an abortion that led to a “haunted future,”  several suicide attempts and eventually led to brain damage, coma, quadriplegic paralysis and death.  She would have gladly married the man who got her pregnant ; she was in love with him, but he was just using her on the side. Oldest story in the world. Women never learn. 
      Maybe when the patriarchy, in its men, repents of its sins in using women for their sexual gratification, feminism and abortion as a cultural and social “necessity” will disappear .

      • Yes, just blame the patriarchy…
        Just shows how much this man-hating revolutionary feminist mindset has infiltrated our Orthodox women.

        • Well, there is a sense in which I sympathize with Linda.  Feminism has wrought boundless carnage both physically and emotionally even in its adherents.
          But notice the dynamic:  “If men would only X, then women would sin no more.”  Still completely dependent.  But women were created as “worthy assistants” in the Garden.  Dependence is baked into the hard drive.  There is a certain emotional dependence for which there is no substitute but a healthy male.
          Cursing the feminist dynamic in the service of perpetuating it is no solution.  A woman screwed a guy, got pregnant, killed the baby, broke down psychologically and committed suicide.  This is not a commercial for female independence or emotional stability.
          The one thing which I will NOT do is feel sorry for the sisters.  We are way past that.  Deification of pain and death does no one any good.  We are talking about the perpetuation of feminism which is inherently a culture of death.  One suicide is tragic.  Over 60 million tiny corpses, countless failed marriages, cycles of poverty and violence . . .
          . . . no, hell no.  May her sister rest in peace and God have mercy on her soul but it does not and cannot change the morality of what she did.
          Patriarchy, though imperfect, is the only way forward.

        • Linda Albert says

          I call to mind Victorian England and the culture in this brave experiment of ours in “egalitie.” Well, we always knew that some were going to be more  “equal” than others. Young men were encouraged to sow their wild oats and have a little fun before they settled down, learn what they liked before restricting themselves.
          A boy in  Navigators, who considered himself a Christian, in whom I was interested in college turned me down as datable material because I was very firmly in the virgin til married camp. “You wouldn’t buy a car without driving it first, would you?” And even worse, ” If the woman wasn’t beaten into unconsciousness , then she wasn’t raped, because no woman can be raped against her will. ” But then his father had a stack of Playboy magazines by the living room sofa, denigrated his wife and younger son and told the son I was interested in that I didn’t turn him (the father) on. Yeah, creepy, huh? I might have come that close, myself. God was and is merciful. 
          I’m just saying that the attitudes about practically expecting the man to be sexually experienced and demanding the woman to be a virgin on their wedding night and the husband having a mistress being socially acceptable while are the attitudes and beliefs  very prevalent in patriarchy of which it needs to repent.
          No, the sin of her sexual partner did not, does not negate my sister’s sin in the relationship nor of her subsequent action. But had she been found to have been with child, (notice how that phrase was phased out of the English language?) she would have been the one shamed, not him. In the 1980’s I’m not even sure what recourse she could have even had for child support from the father. DNA paternity tests didn’t exist and he could have claimed she was a slut who was sleeping around. She suffered remorse and grief for the rest of her life for that sin, not him. Not that I know. Maybe God dispensed justice, if not yet, surely He will. What makes you think I am deifying death, of using the death of women by the hands of partners, abortionists or themselves as a justification for the ruination of human relations and the collapse of  social and moral structure by feminization?
          Cause most of the time it’s the guy that screws the girl and skips out. And most guys, Christian or not, want to keep it that way. “But, she came onto me!”

          • “The question which you have put seems to me to do honour to chastity, and to demand a kind reply. Chastity, in respect of which I see that the majority of men are ill-disposed, and that their laws are unequal and irregular. For what was the reason why they restrained the woman, but indulged the man, and that a woman who practises evil against her husband’s bed is an adulteress, and the penalties of the law for this are very severe; but if the husband commits fornication against his wife, he has no account to give? I do not accept this legislation; I do not approve this custom. They who made the Law were men, and therefore their legislation is hard on women, since they have placed children also under the authority of their fathers, while leaving the weaker sex uncared for. God does not so; but says Honour your father and your mother, which is the first commandment with promise; that it may be well with you; and, He that curses father or mother, let him die the death. Similarly He gave honour to good and punishment to evil. And, The blessing of a father strengthens the houses of children, but the curse of a mother uproots the foundations. Sirach 3:11 See the equality of the legislation. There is one Maker of man and woman; one debt is owed by children to both their parents.
            How then do you demand Chastity, while thou dost not yourself observe it? How do you demand that which thou dost not give? How, though you are equally a body, do you legislate unequally? If you enquire into the worse — The Woman Sinned, and so did Adam. Genesis 3:6 The serpent deceived them both; and one was not found to be the stronger and the other the weaker. But do you consider the better? Christ saves both by His Passion. Was He made flesh for the Man? So He was also for the woman. Did He die for the Man? The Woman also is saved by His death. He is called of the seed of DavidRomans 1:3 and so perhaps you think the Man is honoured; but He is born of a Virgin, and this is on the Woman’s side. They two, He says, shall be one Flesh; so let the one flesh have equal honour. And Paul legislates for chastity by His example. How, and in what way? This Sacrament is great, he says, But I speak concerning Christ and the ChurchEphesians 5:32 It is well for the wife to reverence Christ through her husband: and it is well for the husband not to dishonor the Church through his wife. Let the wife, he says, see that she reverence her husband, for so she does Christ; but also he bids the husband cherish his wife, for so Christ does the Church. Let us, then, give further consideration to this saying.”
            That’s from Saint Gregory the Theologian. We’re all in this together.
            Sure, there are many men who are completely disgusting swine, but let’s not blame men (‘the patriarchy’) as a whole. Likewise, there are many, many awful women, but we can’t blame women for all that’s gone wrong in society.
            That being said, there has been a considerable decline in society as a whole – across all cultures – since ‘women’s lib’ became a thing. Hypergamy (as George mentioned), the birth control pill, mass abortion, demographic disaster, etc. Sure, women aren’t solely to blame, but their role in destroying civilization cannot be denied.
            In Africa and the Middle East, where traditional gender roles are still clinging on, society is still relatively cohesive, if not entirely virtuous.

      • Amen, Linda. Thank you for writing. God bless you for helping men understand what lies behind the movements we all deplore.

        Orthodox men have special power to be healing in their words and actions with and about these walking wounded women who have been abused and demeaned by men originally and now by their own in the radical feminist movement.

        Only Orthodoxy understands Panagia fully and knows she is both our loving mother and ideal. The disciples sought her counsel. She is respected above all persons who have ever lived.

        Once women understand their calling and men treat them with love, respect and compassion for their wounds, speaking the truth in love, the healing begins every time, glory to God! I have seen it and it is beautiful to see.

      • “Feminism was an outgrowth of the Free Love movement and cultural revolution and moral revolt of the sixties that was basically another setup by man boys to have unrestrained sexual privilege without responsibility.”
        Hmmm . . . tell that to Susan B. Anthony.
        Really, feminism in America began with the Married Women’s Property Acts in the late 19th century.  It moved on to suffrage, then in the 1960’s, it piggy-backed not only on the Free Love movement but, more significantly, on the Civil Rights Movement (recall the Lennon song “Woman is the Nigger of the World”).
        And it was all a crock.  The problem is the large pool of unmarried, unattached, independent women.  That’s a playground for mischief.  Yes, men have strong libidos.  Yet when women either belonged to their fathers, their husbands or their oldest sons, this primal force was kept in check by the men who had charge of them.  The main exceptions to that were female slaves and prostitutes.  The word commonly translated in the New Testament and Fathers as “fornication” actually referred to harlotry in particular, although sometimes they analogized certain practices to harlotry.  The concept of a world of independent women was unimaginable to them.
        That world, where all women except miscreants are dependent upon this or that man, is a patriarchy.  When you have that, you have neither liberated women nor the prospect of enticing little Britneys wandering around unsupervised and that is the root of the problem.
        Many women and men cannot see the forest for the trees and blame male irresponsibility and libido for the problems that lead to “liberation”.  But the origin of it all was “liberation” itself. 
        My mother, God rest her soul, told me later in life that she did not have sex before marrying my father, though they both dated other people before marrying.  She explained it was hard for me to understand how it was back then, but informed me that her father would have killed her if she got pregnant. 
        She was not using the term “kill” in the hyperbolic common way we do so now.  This was the Upper South/Midwest of the 1950’s.  She meant what she said literally.  Now, she loved her father.  But she understood her place.

        • Tim R. Mortiss says

          The usual solution in that not-uncommon case was marriage, rather than murder; especially among the Christian peoples of the world.
          My grandfather, born 1895, died 1977, used to remark that he was a ‘love child,’ as the saying went. My grandma (born 1898, died 1994) used to joke that when little kids back then asked their mothers ‘how long it took for a baby’, the answer was: ‘the first one can come anytime, and after that it takes 9 months’. And she was talking about well over a hundred years ago now. (In their case, my dad was born 9 months, 3 days after the wedding…)
          Grandad was born in Vancouver, BC; grandma in West Point, Kentucky.
          As Hamlet said: “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.”

        • George Michalopulos says

          If I may expand a little further.

          The sexual ratio is always (roughly) one to one. Before contraception, that created a “forced situation” that if you wanted to have sex, you had to get married. And because of this equal ratio, everybody could have a marital partner. This not only kept men’s libidinal urges in check but also restrained women’s natural tendency to hypergamy. Sure, a man would want to have as much sexual access as possible and a woman would desire a successful man but most men and women were already “spoken for”.

          Today however, because these restraints are gone, the “80/20 rule” has reasserted itself. Unfortunately, this rule is the natural order of things, sexually speaking. What this means is that 80% of women desire access to the top 20% of men. This means that the top 20% of men are essentially polygamists (whether legally or in reality).

          This also mean that the bottom 80% of men are fighting over the bottom 20% of women. This is an inherently unstable situation but is normative in nature. Regardless, it skews the 1:1 ratio. What obtained pre-1960 was the sexual regime which forced men and women to abide by the 1:1 ratio.

          Personally speaking, I remember growing up in my Greek-American community and except for a few confirmed bachelors and old maids (say 5% of the total number of adults), everybody was married. And the social life reflected it. Even though the majority were largely working-class/lower middle-class, there was always something going on at the parish hall or at each others’ houses. My sister and I had a gamut of baby-sitters on average twice a month.

          This seemed to be the case for my non-Greek neighbors as well.

          Bottom line? Even if a certain woman had wished she married a more high-achieving alpha male and another man had wished he had had a prettier wife, the constraints of pre-contraception meant that at the very least, a great percentage of the population had the expectation of marriage.

          What obtains presently is sexual anarchy. (Even if it is normative.)

        • Tim R. Mortiss says

          There is a lot of bloviation about ‘patriarchy’ here. I visualize the roosters in their caged domains, going about with puffed chests, while the hens roll their eyes and laugh behind their wingtips…
          Men and women are wholly, completely, radically equal. Their roles differ, which changes nothing about their equality.
          The man leads the woman in the dance, but it is she who makes him the leader. Without her seeing to it, he never becomes the leader. If he’s smart, he’ll see it. She won’t announce it.
          I’m an actual patriarch, with 5 children, 12 grandchildren, and assorted sons-in-law, daughter-in-law, and now, grandsons-in-law. I’ll have a granddaughter-in-law in June, no matter what happens.
          My wife made a man out of me, and in the fullness of time, she made a patriarch of me.
          He who has ears, let him put aside his delusions and hear.

          • Timor Mortis,
            Aptly named.  Alinsky said humor was the best weapon as well.  Equality is an abominable lie foisted upon us out of the “Enlightenment”. 
            Men and women are certainly different and complimentary.  However, in terms of strength and leadership, there is no equality unless it is indoctrinated into us and enforced against our ingrained natures.  We can see that clearly from history and the animal kingdom if we aren’t completely deluded by post-industrial, feminist claptrap.

            When Roe and Casey fall, I guarantee you the [feminists] will laugh no more.

      • George Michalopulos says

        Linda, I hope we all pray for your sister. Gail and I certainly will.

        Women do “never learn” but women’s liberation “made it very easy for women to be so willfully ignorant. Of course, it’s a chicken-and-egg conundrum: did women become liberationists because of the masculine-driven Playboy philosophy? Probably. The real answer though goes back to the so-called Enlightenment and the nonsensical phrase “all men are created equal” (which itself is taken out of context).

        Liberationism, egalitarianism and a disdain for hierarchy made the sexual revolution inevitable. The ball was set in motion way back then.

      • cynthia curran says

        Probably, the current problem is not promicus sex so much but pople wanting to be  a different sex from wht they were  born with. Boys want to use the same bathroom as girls or shower with them since they think they should have been born a girl.

  4. “And lest we forget, the emperor in question…was either Caligula or Nero…”
    Or, possibly, Claudius…
    Other than that, I agree with you George.

    • cynthia curran says

      Ttue, Claudius was mention in the book of acts when there was a famine. Also, another event in acts about some Jews being exiled from Rome because of fighting and agruing. This exile like the famine is mention in Suetonius life of Claudius.

    • George Michalopulos says

      In any event, a pagan.

      Not that I don’t have a soft spot in my heart for Claudius. As a stutterer myself, I sympathized with the poor fellow.

      FWIW, I encourage everybody to read both of Robert Graves’ books, I, Claudius and Claudius the God. And by all means watch the 13-part miniseries. Derek Jacobi is wonderful and John Hurt as Caligula was so over-the-top!

      • cynthia curran says

        Good point. Graves had a classical background. He was into strong women, so you have Livia as a very strong women. My remark about the book of acts and events during the reign of Claudius is that unlike what Atheist think there were events in the bible which happen.

  5. Monk James Silver says

    Christ is risen, truly risen!
    Thanks for this important reminder, dear George.  I regret that more of our priests don’t speak about our responsibilities to undo the wrong-headed policies which allow abortion on demand in the United States.
    Lately, there have been ads on TV encouraging childless married couples to consult with a particular company to see if they can be helped to have children by using in vitro techniques.  This is an amazingly evil suggestion which appears to support the creation of new human life at the same time as it necessitates the abortion of as many human embryos as are not implanted, and — by ‘selective reduction’ — even of some already growing in the womb.  What those ‘scientists’ do with embryos aborted  at any stage of development is also sinful, and we Christians cannot benefit in any way from that awful abuse without being complicit in the murder of those children.
    So, yes, this is not a situation in which Christians can take a laissez-faire attitude.  The action called for here is humanitarian and life-saving, and only incidentally political.

  6. Fr. Deacon John says

    Politics is rooted in Greek alright.  Poli – which means many, and tics, which are blood-sucking parasites.  Sorry George and Gail – couldn’t resist…..

    • Fr. Deacon John,

      “Poli – which means many, and tics, which are blood-sucking parasites.”
      Is this a bad joke?
      Many is not poli but polloi, double-l.
      Poli is from Polis or Politeia. 

      • No, it was a good joke, but one that requires suspension of grammatical autism to truly appreciate.

      • George Michalopulos says

        Ioanni, Fr Deacon’s aphorism is a well-meaning joke. Not incorrect btw, at least on some levels. I mean, look at how many politicians retire much wealthier than when they first took up office.

        At the very least, that’s what “gaming the system” refers to.

        • Ioannis says

          I got it!
          Thanks a lot Basil and George.
          Sorry for the inconvenience. 
          Unfortunately, it seems that  I am getting so fed up with the overall current situation that I am not even prepared to hear a joke. Kyrie eleison.

  7. Joseph Lipper says

    Abortion was illegal in the “Byzantine” Empire and also in Tsarist Russia.  Yet in the predominantly Orthodox countries of today, we witness instead that abortion is typically legal during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy.  Abortion is legal in Greece, Russia, Cyprus, Serbia, Romania, Bulgaria, Ukraine, Belarus, and Georgia.  Although there exist political movements to change this, apparently such change hasn’t gained sufficient traction or interest with those same countries’ governments.  Conversely, it seems only in countries where Orthodox Christians represent a minority, such as in the predominantly Muslim countries of Syria, Lebanon, and Egypt, that we find abortion is illegal. 
    So what explains this shift in legalizing abortion that we find in present day Orthodox countries?  Presumably those same countries didn’t have legalized abortion a hundred years ago, maybe even fifty years ago.  So what is preventing those same Orthodox countries from making abortion illegal once again?
    In the U.S., it is our appointed federal judicial system that is currently preventing states, such as Alabama, from making abortion illegal.  Changing or upholding the decision of “Roe vs. Wade” remains the prerogative of non-elected judges within the federal courts.  Even so, the topic of abortion remains a political hot topic that galvanizes support and votes for politicians, both for those “for” and for those “against”.

    One may wonder how any U.S. politician could possibly survive today without exploiting their respective viewpoints on abortion.  It is a calculated political machine on both sides. Yet whether abortion remains legal or not, the decision ultimately remains outside the grasp of the voting public and their elected officials.

    • anonimus per Scorilo says

      So what is preventing those same Orthodox countries from making abortion illegal once again?

      I can only answer about the Romanian situation. Abortions were allowed when the communists came, but when the numbers began to be of the order of almost 1 million/year (Lord Have Mercy !!!) they were forbidden (except in some circumstances).

      As a result there were many botched abortions done on kitchen tables, and a large number of women who died. At the Romanian revolution abortions were allowed again (one of the first new laws), and the numbers jumped again to 1 million/year; then they started going down and have been going down ever since.

      But because the interdiction of abortions was done by Ceausescu, the issue is a political hot potato, and no party in the parliament pushes for it. As a result, the Church is choosing to exert soft pressure through confessions and talks rather then making a strong push for a law in this direction.

      P.S. I know that it is very in vogue these days for lay people to attack the bishops of all orthodox churches for being sellouts to the antichrist for closing the churches because of the coronavirus. I hope the explanation of the situation in Romania will not cause more such attacks.

      • Gail Sheppard says

        You’re talking about a time before birth control, “Plan B” and pill-induced abortions. I don’t think the drop in surgical abortions has anything to do with “soft-pressure” by the Church, as the Church’s position hasn’t changed. It has to do with options that didn’t exist before.

        Not getting your concern about lay people attacking bishops because of your explanation.

        • George Michalopulos says

          Yeah, ApS, I’m not getting your concern about us critiquing the bishops, either. I do appreciate your inside info about the Romanian situation.

          At the end of the day, the teaching authority resides only in the Episcopate, not the Presbytery, Diaconate or the Laity. Truth is truth and it’s incumbent upon the bishops to just speak it and let the chips fall where they may.

          • Matthew Panchisin says

            Dear George,

            I didn’t know the Orthodox Church had a magisterium,
            is that another novel  movement we should adhere to?

      • Mikhail says

        “I know that it is very in vogue these days for lay people to attack the bishops of all orthodox churches for being sellouts to the antichrist for closing the churches because of the coronavirus. “
        You’ve got this wrong, my friend. The bishops attacked the lay people. The bishops locked them out of the Ark of Salvation. The bishops deprived them of the life sustaining Body and Blood of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. The bishops are obeying the civil authorities…the same civil authorities who designate Walmart as essential and Churches as non-essential.  The bishops have hidden themselves in a dark room…with bars on the windows.

        • anonimus per Scorilo says

          The bishops attacked the lay people. The bishops locked them out of the Ark of Salvation. The bishops deprived them of the life sustaining Body and Blood of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. 

          Like this guy for example ?

          (I could not find an English version, Google translate works better from French than from Russian)

          • Gail Sheppard says

            apS,You’re taking this too far.  It’s as if you think these words can stand apart from the context in which the were said and make sense.  They can’t.  Our frustration is with our own bishops.  Unlike Patriarch Kirill whom seemingly cares for his grieving for his flock, our bishops issue directives and think everything is hunky dory.   

            • Mikhail says

              If I may add…and I may be mistaken. He is telling people who are afraid or immune compromised, or elderly ect….to stay home. But the Churches are not locked down. Am I correct here, Gail?

          • George Michalopulos says

            ApS, good people can disagree about how we as Christians dealt with the COVID-19 crisis.  This would include disagreements within local churches.
            While the Church of Russia as well as other Old World churches tended to follow the WHO guidelines, I am rather shocked as to how quickly we here in America acceded to the secular authorities. 
            In any event, I am rather concerned by those who consistently seem to find fault with the Church of Russia, perhaps the only local Church that experienced unimaginable suffering for the better part of a century.  On that issue alone, I am more than willing to cut them some slack.  What was our excuse here in America, where we never suffered such persecution?  

            • Gail Sheppard says

              Not one bishop put up any semblance of a struggle. If they had at least made it clear to our governors that the Church is ESSENTIAL and then exercised the same precautions, for the same reasons, it would have been easier to take. But they don’t believe it. Not here.

          • Ioannis says

            anonimus per Scorilo,
            “(I could not find an English version, Google translate works better from French than from Russian)”
            You may find that for Russian texts a better translation  into English (via french) is straight Russian to English but by using the “Yandex Browser”. So the translation will be done by Yandex, not Google.

          • Brendan says

            apS: ”
            (I could not find an English version, Google translate works better from French than from Russian) ”
            If you click on the Union Jack on the top right of that page,
            you will get an excellent English translation

    • George Michalopulos says

      Joseph, of those nine Orthodox countries you mention, all but seven were under the Communist yoke, which was set in motion by the satanic Bolsheviks. Their God-hating doctrines were inculcated in the young for at least three generations. Old habits die hard. Greece and Cyprus on the other hand, were spared this yoke. (I shudder to think if their judgment will be worse given that they escaped the evil scourge of Lenin.)

      • Joseph Lipper says

        I can’t find a single country with a predominant Orthodox Christian population anywhere in the world right now that has made abortion illegal.  It’s been almost thirty years since the fall of the Soviet Union, and all of those countries I listed now have majority populations that identify as Orthodox Christian.  Does this represent some type of world-wide moral confusion among Orthodox Christians? 
         Well, I suspect the Orthodox churches in those countries all teach that abortion is a sin and is also the premeditated murder of an unborn child.  So I’m not convinced there is necessarily moral confusion about this.  I guess the most pertinent statistic might be whether or not the rate of abortions are decreasing in those countries, even with it being legal. 

        • Gail Sheppard says

          Identifying as Orthodox does not mean one practices what the Church teaches or even has values that are in alignment with Church beliefs. Some think “Orthodox” is an ethnicity. Even if these countries were prodemonimately Church going Orthodox, that wouldn’t guarantee they would be able to repeal existing laws.

          “Orthodox Christians in the former Soviet Union generally report the lowest levels of observance among those of their faith, perhaps reflecting the legacy of Soviet repression of religion. In Russia, for example, just 6% of Orthodox Christian adults say they attend church at least weekly, 15% say religion is “very important” in their lives, and 18% say they pray daily. Other former Soviet republics display similarly low levels of religious observance. Together, these countries are home to a majority of the world’s Orthodox Christians.”

    • cynthia curran says
  8. “The fetus in his mother’s womb however made no negative life choices, whatsoever.”
    I have heard many times when people who support abortion-on-demand make the analogy that you cannot be against abortion if you are in favor of the death penalty.  That line of argument never works for me because I am against the death penalty. However, it is not a good argument. The person who has been sentenced to death was born, lived for a period of time, and made some really bad choices. The aborted baby was not born, never lived outside the womb, and never made a choice in his/her life. They are the innocent ones without a voice or a choice.

  9. Brendan says
  10. If you’re a Christian and “don’t do politics” then you’re not a Christian. Jesus Christ is both God and man, and in the incarnation He participated in every facet of human life – family, economics, politics, etc.
    Christians and the Church must do politics. Anything else is a betrayal of Chalcedon and its ramifications. We need Christian political theories, we need Christian political parties, and we need Christian activists.
    Not ‘not do politics’ and let the God-haters destroy civilization shows a profound lack of love.

    • Joseph Lipper says

      Did anyone ever read about how St. Paul exhorted the Christians to band together in the name of social justice?  Where is that verse about overthrowing the pagan Roman government?  

      • Anonymous says

        Good point, Joseph.  
        Seriously, death to the world!

      • Did I hit a nerve, Joseph?
        I don’t think I mentioned anything about overthrowing any governments. As for Christians banding together for social justice, are you seriously trying to say that there’s something wrong with Christians working together to feed the poor and hungry, clothe the naked, visit the sick, in accordance with Christ’s words? As an extension, is it therefore wrong for those aforementioned Christians to work together in the political realm in order to make conditions better for people?
        OR are you happy to let people die in misery on the street – as you are in the womb – in the name of ‘staying out of politics’?

        • Joseph Lipper says

          Basil, not at all.  I don’t find a reference for St. Paul exhorting Christians to band together in the name of social justice, but he does exhort Christians to band together in the name of Jesus Christ.  I also don’t think St. Paul had anything against people who were involved in politics.  Quite the opposite, he seems to view all governments as being ordained by God, and government officials as “God’s ministers on earth”.   Of course he was referencing the pagan Roman government of his time.  Yet I don’t find a verse where he advocates for changing this government through any political means (like protest), but please correct me if wrong.

          • George Michalopulos says

            Joseph, “social justice” is a false, moralist construct designed by the evil one to distract people from doing that which is right and needful.

            Technically speaking, there is absolutely nothing wrong (and a lot which is right) in Christians doing what they can to adhere to Christian principles and make their little corner of the world better. Realizing of course that there are limits to how much better that little piece of real estate can be improved.

            Feed the hungry, heal the sick, free the captive. Nothing wrong with that. To the extent that political means are used, so what?

            • Joseph Lipper says

              George, I believe the “anti-slavery” movement that preceded and continued through the Civil War was a virtue-signaling “social justice” movement. Yet slavery wasn’t the real reason for the war. Please correct me if wrong, but I believe the real debate of that war was of northern states maintaining federal control, and southern states resisting it. Perhaps even ultimately it was about money, and southern states resisting federal taxes.

              Likewise, I am inclined to view the so called “pro-life” movement of today as another such virtue-signaling “social justice” movement. Once again, the real political struggle is something different. It’s not really about abortion (after all, the government isn’t trying to abort anyone’s baby), but perhaps rather it’s about politicians and states resisting federal control over their right to self-governance (such as Alabama). Perhaps even once again it really just boils down to power and money and politicians using abortion as their rationale for resistance against federalism.

              During the Civil War, the politicians of the northern states exploited the “immorality of slavery” (of course they mostly didn’t have slaves.) Likewise, the politicians of today’s so called “pro-life” movement exploit the immorality of abortion (and yes, abortion is immoral, but the “pro-lifers” don’t really have abortions either.) So once again, all this virtue-signaling “social justice” warrioring is perhaps really about politicians supporting or resisting federal control. That appears to be the main struggle, and yes, it could lead to another “Civil War”. It would be a long, dark and bloody night indeed if this happened.

              Rather than playing into this game of federal-state politics, perhaps one day more Christians will stop being pawns, negate the game, step down from their involvement with the so called “pro-life” movement, and instead focus their time and talent on doing what actually is pro-life like supporting their church, their monasteries, and other excellent organizations like “ZOE for life”.

              Christ Is Risen!

              • George Michalopulos says

                Indeed He is risen!

                Joseph, you are quite correct regarding abolitionism. There was a whole lot of “virtue signaling” going on then. Personally, a lot of these people were pests, it got to the point where even Lincoln, Grant and Sherman detested them. Indeed, they probably made matters worse. Virginia for example was ready to abolish slavery but it failed by three votes in the House of Burgesses because of their noxious attitudes (and the Nat Turner rebellion).

                Having said that there many in the Abolition movement who put their money where their mouths were and helped escaped slaves get jobs.

          • Good thing we’re not sola scriptura, yes? Just consult the 2,000 year history of the Church for a multitude of examples of all the things I mentioned, including Christians going out of their ways to rescue children from infanticide.

            • George Michalopulos says

              One of the dicta of quietude/passivity is “text without context”.

            • Joseph Lipper says

              Basil, yes, whether the government has laws or not, Christians  have a history of going out of their way to protect children from infanticide.  I think we can see this today in America, where many young mothers have been counseled out of having abortions by Christian friends, parents, families, priests, churches, and other non-government organizations. I’m not against government solutions, but I’d much rather support solutions that come outside of the government box.

              • Joseph Lipper says

                By the way, ZOE for life is an excellent non-government resource for women struggling with emotional and physical abuse, unplanned pregnancy, and support in providing for their children.  This organization is also endorsed by the Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops.  They could use our generous support:

                • George Michalopulos says

                  Thank you Joseph for mentioning Zoe for Life. They do deserve our generous support indeed.

          • Joseph: “I don’t find a verse where [St Paul] advocates for
            changing this government through any political means”
            ‘Changing the government by political means (like protest)
            was not legal in the Roman Empire’. In the United States it is.

            • George Michalopulos says

              As are elections. There is nothing heretical about suffrage.

              • Joseph Lipper says

                George, I completely agree.  There is nothing inherently wrong with voting in U.S. elections.  I hope that people don’t get the impression that I’m saying otherwise.

                • George Michalopulos says

                  Thank you, Joseph. I would like to add this: as a free-born citizen in a constitutional Republic, you are free to vote or not vote, carry a firearm or not, worship or not. I take exception though in the purist attitude of many Christians who feel that it is all merely a kabuki theater, especially when it comes to the issue of abortion. I am not unsympathetic to this opinion, however like Jesus Himself said, as a Christian, we are called to alleviate suffering in any way we can, no matter how meager (or fruitless) our efforts.

      • Joseph,
        Can you please post St Paul’s social justice verses? Then we can find the patristic interpretation.

        • Joseph Lipper says

          I believe it’s on the topic of social justice that St. Paul said things like “slaves obey your earthly masters”, and “children obey your parents”, and “wives obey your husbands”.  Obedience is key, but he qualifies this as an obedience “not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but as the servants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart.”

          • Saint Paul lived in a time when the citizenry of the empire (whether Christian or not) had near zero political influence and absolutely zero input into civil law.  The same cannot be said of those of us who live in Constitutional Republics. 
            Our vote may count for little in the vast scheme of the political sphere, but it does count nevertheless, particularly in the eyes of God.
            We will not be judged on ‘results,’ but we will doubtless be judged on our stewardship of whatever degree of power we have been given in any sphere of life, even as emperors (many of whom are Saints), presidents, representatives, judges, etc., will be judged on their stewardship of the powers they are/were given.
            To him who is given much, much will be required.  And to him who is given little, little will be required; but that little will still be required.
            Moreover, it’s no use claiming that one can opt out because perfection (i.e., perfect political choices) are not available.  One only needs to review the imperfect lives of the emperor Saints to see that perfection is not what God requires of us.

            • George Michalopulos says

              Very well said, Brian.

              What you wrote comes perilously close to the Parable of the Three Stewards, one of whom was given 5 talents, the other 2 and the third one talent. Even a peon like you or me has been given at least one talent –being freeborn men in a constitutional Republic–and those who wish to be all purist will probably receive the same rebuke on Judgment Day that the steward who was given one talent.

              One reason Christians are called to be patriots and –in our case here in America–citizens with some political power, is because to do anything less would be the height of ingratitude.

              Dr Ben Carson, the HUD Secretary, once was asked about “reparations”. He answered thusly: “I won the lottery when I was born in the United States”. How much more fortunate you or I were to be born in America when we could have been born in Cuba, Africa or Indonesia.

            • Tim R. Mortiss says

              As one who twice ran for local public office (and mercifully lost both times), whose wife won 5 elections in a row to (unpaid) local office, and who remains active in local and state politics, at least to some small degree, I agree completely.

            • Tim R. Mortiss says

              Brian says, quite rightly: “Our vote may count for little in the vast scheme of the political sphere, but it does count nevertheless, particularly in the eyes of God.”
              I’d like to reflect on the first part of the statement. This is such a common attitude; that our individual votes count for nothing or little, so what’s the point of voting? (I do not attribute this attitude to Brian.)
              But it really isn’t so, which is why ‘get out the vote’ campaigns and efforts can be crucial, and decisive, especially in elections that are at all competitive.
              The reason is that, contrary to our personal feelings sometimes, we are all much alike. (This is why surgeons can do their jobs.) At the very least, in the political sphere, we are in groups that are much alike. So a ‘get out the vote’ effort which gets me off of my rear and down to the polls, will have the same effect on a whole bunch of people of like mind with myself. Therefore, it won’t be just me. It will be large numbers of people like me. And it works.

            • Joseph Lipper says

              Brian, the inference that you and others seem to be making is that the right to vote in our U.S. political elections is like a talent given to us, and if we vote wisely, then God will reward us saying, “Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.” 
              Of course the elected politicians and political parties may indeed gratify and reward those who give of their talents and votes to them, but in regards to our salvation we should be careful. Christ tells us that on the day of judgement many will try to self justify themselves, saying:

              “Lord, Lord, have we not prophecied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?  And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.”


              • Gail Sheppard says

                I think when Christ returns He will be looking for the degree to which we bear His image.

                There were so many occasions when Christ could have been. . . well, un-Christ like but he met each challenge with His entire person intact. If He had been given the opportunity to preserve innocent life, I’m guessing He would have used that opportunity to preserve innocent life because the preservation of life meant something to Him.

                What those who do NOT vote will have to explain to Christ is why they didn’t do that which they were able to do to preserve that which was important to Him.

                I’m not looking for a reward from God, Joseph. The reward is being given the opportunity to serve Him.

                • Joseph Lipper says

                  Gail, “explain to Christ” not only for the non-voters, but for the voters also. 
                  Is voting by itself a virtue?  Is non-voting necessarily a sin?  It seems to me that most Republicans secretly hope that more Democrats would not vote!

                  • Gail Sheppard says

                    This isn’t about “virtues” or “sin.” It’s about the degree to which we take the opportunities presented to us that support that which the Church teaches.

                    Consider the parable of the Good Samaritan attending to the man who was stripped, beaten and left for dead. Those who walked by, i.e. a priest and a Levite, claimed to love God but did nothing to help this man. In doing nothing, they betrayed their true lack of love for Christ, as we are taught Christ is the man who is robbed and beaten by the side of the road; just as He is the stranger, the one who is hungry, unclothed, imprisoned, and thirsty.

                    Voting has to do with surgical abortions, which are done after a child has spent 3 months in the womb. If ever a human life were beaten and left for dead, it would an aborted baby. And who is the Good Samaritan in this scenario? It’s the one who votes for those who oppose abortion so we can distinguish ourselves from the unfaithful priest and Levite. For to abstain from voting is to “pass by” the wounded, leaving him to die.

                    When Christ returns to look for His image in each of us, do you think He is going to recognize Himself in the priest or the Levite who claim to love Him but were unmoved to help a human being struggling to hold onto the life God gave him?

                    Virtues are “nice to haves”; something to strive for. Sins can be forgiven. But a lack of love and mercy for others (the true motivation behind the parable of the Good Samaritan) is not the image of Christ.

                    Frankly, I don’t care whether or not Democrats vote. I’m a registered Democrat who hasn’t voted as a Democrat since I entered the Church. But it’s different now. If I am free to vote, as I will be in the upcoming election now that I am a legal resident of a state, I cannot in good conscience NOT vote or vote for anyone who supports abortion.

                    • George Michalopulos says

                      And so, Galina, you have distilled this argument down to its bare essence.

                      This is no way means that Republicans are inherently better than Democrats. They are not. However even if both parties engage in kabuki theater regarding the issue of abortion, I cannot in good conscience vote for a man who will caucus with a party that will go to the mattresses for infanticide. At the very least, a GOP president and Senate will at least make the effort to appoint a pro-life judge.

                      I realize that’s small beer but there you go.

                      P.S. For all those who need guidance, Republicans are to vote on Tues, Nov 3rd and Democrats the very next day. 🙂

    • Anonymous says

      Basil, I may sympathize with your exasperation but suggest we find the true ‘Christian political theories’ in the canons and the real ‘Christian political parties’ and ‘activists’ in monasticism. Europe collapsed when she departed from the Orthodox Church, a slow decline to be sure but the answer isn’t – as you may well agree – a secular discussion. Let’s not fool ourselves. A country founded by masonic revolutionaries isn’t going to leap into the Ark overnight. Besides, isn’t following the patristic, sacramental and liturgical life of Holy Tradition enough?

      • Why not both/and? Christians did well getting involved in politics – and in some cases still do – for the majority of history. The Old Testament is an intensely political document. We had a 1,000+ year-long empire in Constantinople built on Christian principles and another one in Russia for almost the same amount of time.

        Up until the middle of the last century when people just seemed to give up, Christian thinkers were always developing theories based on the Church’s Holy Tradition, primarily as a means of manifesting the light of Christ in the world, as well as countering the masonic revolution you rightly mentioned. Churchmen of old fought tooth and nail against those types, yet now we advocate handing everything over to them.

        Telling people to ‘just pray’ is disincarnate pseudo-Christianity. Contemplation leads to action.

        • RIP (reluctant internet poster) says

          If I’m reading him right, I think at least part of his point is that living an Orthodox life *is* action?  That our prayers and our daily efforts to repent actually have cosmic effects?  What other Christian confession says what St Seraphim said?  Acquire the Spirit of Peace and a thousand souls will be saved around you?  I don’t know any other kind of Christian who believes that.  Pretty much the whole of western Christianity makes a sharp distinction between personal piety and public action.  Not that I’m suggesting that Orthodoxy is opposed to public action.  
          Interestingly, I was on the Catholic Encyclopedia the other day looking for some info and on the page for eastern monasticism, the chief complaint of our monks was that they don’t actually *do* anything; all they do is pray.  
          “Churchmen of old fought tooth and nail against those types, yet now we advocate handing everything over to them.”
          Aren’t we just rehashing a debate that’s been baked into America from the beginning?  I mean, I’m not sure anyone would argue that we’ve been equal parts Protestant Christianity and Enlightenment deism from the get go and there’s been an ongoing tension between the two for the entirety of our country’s existence.  
          Which is only to say that I see so many people advocating some kind of return to our roots.  And when we return there, we see pretty much the same tension and debate.  (with the exception that the deists at least found the morals that Christianity promoted to be useful.  Now that we’re in a situation where those morals aren’t viewed as…quite as useful anymore, I think they simply need to be re-expressed, so to speak.  Meaning I don’t think an appeal to the past is going to move anyone.  However, I do think Orthodoxy is uniquely able to express these morals to our current society in a way that matters, as opposed to just throwing Bible verses at people.  If it couldn’t, I very much doubt I would have returned to the Church.)

          • Tim R. Mortiss says

            RIP says: “I mean, I’m not sure anyone would argue that we’ve been equal parts Protestant Christianity and Enlightenment deism from the get go and there’s been an ongoing tension between the two for the entirety of our country’s existence. ” 
            A woman lawyer friend of mine, who was a law partner in our firm and has been a professional colleague for 40 years was fond of saying: “Thank God the Constitution of the United States was written by white male deists.”

      • Brendan says

        Anonymous: “A country founded by masonic revolutionaries
        isn’t going to leap into the Ark overnight.”
        Surely that will depend on how deep the water is…?

  11. In fact, it is men who seem never to learn. 
    But men are slowly opening their eyes.  Nature is the first witness – sex distinctions in the natural world and our own biology.  Christian culture before the 19th century is the second witness.  The third witness is the demographic tragedy at work in Western culture.  If we ever bother again to read Scripture and the Fathers without whitewashing and sugarcoating it, that would be a determinative fourth witness.
    Men will slowly wake up and reassert their alpha roles unapologetically without concern for the consequences.  Transgender bathrooms, the whole LBGT/#metoo phenomena, and the systematic dispossession of men by the domestic relations court system have pushed men so our backs are against a wall.  It probably snapped during the last election. 
    It is sad that the retreat went on as long as it has and it is our own fault that we allowed it to get this bad.  But now there is no where to go but forward and upward and we just have to fight it through confidently, without doubt or fear, and we will prevail.  But we will have to regrow our balls and, sadly, few of us even realize how far we have fallen.

  12. George Michalopulos says

    Not exactly Mel Gibson, playing William Wallace in Braveheart (which was mostly mythic), but a call for “FREEDOM!” nonetheless:

    Bottom line:  this is how many revolutions start.  May it be so here. 

    • Well… a hairdresser is braver than our bishops.

      • Yeah…the bishops have been very quiet. Are they in hiding? The only voice I’ve heard is Abp Elpi telling everyone that non-Orthodox can receive Communion and the spoon which administers Communion can carry disease. Other than that…all of us non-essential Christians are waiting for the next “directive”.

      • George Michalopulos says


        FWIW, the judge is nothing but a proglib race-hustler (he called Clarence Thomas an “Uncle Tom”).

        Seriously folks, there are way too many “public servants” out there who are way too much enjoying flaunting their authority. However, we should never forget that karma is a female dog.

  13. George Michalopulos says

    BTW, Fr Alexander F C Webster published a piece along these lines several years ago, entitled “Politics is not a dirty word”.  I believe it was in First Things.  

    Unfortunately, it’s no longer available online. Fr Alexander was kind enough to send me a hard copy. I’ll to find a way to copy and paste it; failing that, you can contact me and I’ll try to send it to those who are interested.

    • That sounds like the kind of thing Fr. Alexander would write! I imagine that it’s very good. I look forward to you sharing it on here.

  14. cynthia curran says

    Bernie Sanders is not the idealistic person that young leftist think. He supported the war in Bosnia so Vermont could make military hardware now he opposes the conflict in Yemen but supported the war in Bosnia.

    • George Michalopulos says

      One reason he supported the war in Bosnia is because Bosnia was Phase One in direct American involvement in the war on Orthodox culture.  (Cyprus was the first.)
      Never forget, the American neoliberal elite –a continuation of the New England Puritan warmongering busybodies–hates Orthodox Christianity. 

  15. Joseph Lipper says

    Plaintiff [Norma McCorvey] in Roe v. Wade U.S. abortion case says she was paid to switch sides

    “The Rev. Robert Schenck, one of the evangelical pastors who worked with [Norma] McCorvey after her conversion to Christianity in the mid-1990s, looked stunned as he was shown her interview as part of the documentary.

    “Schenck said the anti-abortion movement had exploited her weaknesses for its own ends and acknowledged she had been paid for her appearances on the movement’s behalf.

    “’What we did with Norma was highly unethical,’ Schenck said in the documentary. ‘The jig is up.’”

    Once Militantly Anti-Abortion, Evangelical Minister Now Lives ‘With Regret’

    “Evangelical minister Rob Schenck was once a militant leader of the anti-abortion movement, blockading access to clinics to prevent doctors and patients from entering.

    “But after more than 20 years in the movement, Schenck experienced a change of heart. Though firm in his evangelicalism, he has disavowed his militant anti-abortion stance.

    “‘I live with regret,’ he says of some of his former tactics. ‘I remember women — some of them quite young — being very distraught, very frightened, some very angry. Over time, I became very callous to that.’

    “Schenck now sees abortion as a moral and ethical issue that should be resolved by ‘an individual and his or her conscience’ — rather than by legislation.

    “‘This is not a question for politicians,’ he says. ‘When your end goal is a political one, you will, without exception, exploit the pain and the suffering and the agony of those who face the issue in their daily reality, in their real life.'”

    • Still doesn’t make infanticide okay.

      • George Michalopulos says

        Sorry, Joseph, you’ve been snookered. Norma McCorvey (aka Jane Roe), never gave up her commitment to the pro-life cause.

        The makers of the documentary you cite have been credibly accused of deceptively editing McCorvey’s words. According to witnesses who talked to her just before her death, she remained committed to the pro-life movement until the day she died.

        These deceptive filmmakers waited three years after her death to put out their deceptive film, when she was no longer around to defend herself.

        Rev Schenck is a pinko and a sell-out. An Evangelicuck of the first order.

        • George Michalopulos says

          Also, in the GQ piece on McCorvey’s supposed conversion to back to being pro-abortion, the author claimed that the segregationist Gov George C Wallace of Alabama was a “Republican”.  
          If you can’t get something straight like that from the jump then everything else is suspect.

          • George Michalopulos says

            Well, lookee here:  not only was Joe Biden, pro-George Wallace, he praised the Confederacy:
            The takeaway?  Don’t trust the mainstream media for information.  At this point, if Don Limon says that the sun will rise in the east tomorrow, I’d put my money on it rising in the west.

          • Khouriya Frederica M-G settles it, with first-hand knowledge of Ms. McCorvey: “Jane Doe” was authentic in her pro-life position.
            Khouriya F M-G offers valuable insight into the character assassination that the Demo-Fascists love to employ:  the “pro-life movement” has no money, thus if Ms. McCorvey was just in it for money, it was a very illogical place to go.  The leftist Demo-Fascists in the anti-life movement — the ones who don’t care about Ms. McCorvey or anyone as a person but who only use people to help their cause — they are the filthy rich ones.
            On this ridiculous GQ piece.  Do you think that the author really cares about the specifics of George Wallace?  Do its readers care?  Of course not.  All GQ and its readers want is something that makes them feel better about being in the anti-life camp.  That’s what it’s all about.  Something that demonizes the pro-life cause is all that’s required; the details or veracity of it are irrelevant. I have shame that I actually bought and read GQ 20 years ago or so when I thought it was cool of me to do so.
            That’s why so many of us reflexively go to Twitter or to Facebook — to read posts that reinforce what we want to believe.  GQ doesn’t care about the details — indeed, its lame “mea culpa” that it posted (about incorrectly characterizing Wallace as a Repub) was itself wrong.  “Just give me my fix – more ‘pro-life-bad’ stories, please – to help with my self-assurance!” 

            This is why Twitter and FB do not build connection or community, but they only build up walls of divisions. “Confirmation bias” is amplified and rampant on social media, where we only look at information that we agree with and ignore opposing views. Which is why I left social media, never to return.

            • George Michalopulos says

              FTS, the Hive mentality of the Left is even worse when we consider that GQ was devoted to men’s fashions at one time.  Now it’s a glossy howitzer armed at anything to the right of Hubert Humphrey.  
              The point?  Pretty much everything we read/see/ingest/consume from the corporate media is propaganda at best and lies at worse. 
              Literally, you can save yourself a lot of time just by looking at the source of any headlined piece anymore.

            • Antiochene Son says

              I also know someone who knew Jane Roe, and her repentance was authentic. She mourned the case till the day she died. The Left is still abusing her to this day. 

              • George Michalopulos says

                At the risk of beating a dead horse, I knew the GQ story was BS when I read that the reason McCorvey jumped on the pro-life bandwagon was “for the money”.   It’s a good thing I wasn’t drinking my morning coffee when I read that as I would have spit it out all over the computer screen.

                Folks, trust me, there is zero, zilch, nada moolah in the pro-life movement. 

                Seriously, when it comes to the mainstream media, they’re not even trying that hard anymore to be mendacious.  It’s been a downward trajectory since 2004 and Memogate, which was disproven within 48 hrs by two guys in their pajamas.

                And who can blame them?  Their audience in the Acela Corridor/Portlandia/Swamp is so gullible that all they have to do at this point, is hold out a chicken bone and saying it’s a relic of some medieval saint.

        • Joseph Lipper says

          George, I wanted to wait until I got a chance to actually watch this documentary about Norma McCorvey on FX Channel before commenting further.  By the way, I think it’s well worth watching.
          I think we would agree that McCorvey made a personal decision to capitalize on her role as plaintiff in Roe vs Wade by coming out of anonymity, rising to national fame, and initially becoming a figurehead for the “pro-choice” movement.  She was a young, poor, single mother, a former cleaning lady, who used her new-found fame to receive “pro-choice” speaking engagements and find employment as a counselor at an abortion clinic.  She was getting paid.  The documentary clearly shows her as someone who was doing this primarily for Norma, and yes for the money.  She was trying to make a living out of having been the subject of one of our nation’s most famous court cases. 
          Her later conversion to Christianity is portrayed in this documentary as quite genuine and real.   It’s made clear that she died a Catholic Christian.  Yet whereas she had formerly received money from the “pro-choice” movement, after her conversion she instead received money from the “pro-life” movement.   For example, in a 2013 article in Vanity Fair:
          “McCorvey received a salary of $40,000 annually from Roe No More Ministries, a pro-life nonprofit she helped create. Flip Benham, once national director of Operation Rescue, tells Prager he gave money to McCorvey and Gonzalez and helped work out an $80,000 deal for McCorvey’s second book, Won by Love.”

          As a figurehead for the “pro-life” movement, Norma McCorvey was never made wealthy, but she did continue to make a living out of being Jane Roe.  That’s what she did before, and her conversion to Christianity didn’t change that.

          Whether she was speaking as figurehead for the “pro-choice” crowd, or for the “pro-life” crowd, it appears she was usually coached on what to say, or it was scripted. She wasn’t an ideologue. Some of her own comments in the documentary, such as “I want Hillary Clinton to be president tonight”, perhaps reflect that.

  16. George Michalopulos says

    FTS, the Hive mentality of the Left is even worse when we consider that GQ was devoted to men’s fashions at one time.  Now it’s a glossy howitzer armed at anything to the right of Hubert Humphrey.  

    The point?  Pretty much everything we read/see/ingest/consume from the corporate media is propaganda at best and lies at worse. 
    In any event, we should thank both Fredericka and Rod for setting the record straight.

    Literally, you can save yourself a lot of time just by looking at the source of any headlined piece anymore.