April 16, 2014

The Collapse of the Christian Consensus?

flag-at-half-staff

I got caught short on this election. I thought Romney would win because of Obama's mismanagement of the economy and foreign policy. I never thought that people would vote against their own interests in the numbers that they did. Secondly, it was clear a cultural shift is occurring but I thought it would favor Romney much like Carter-Reagan in 1980 especially since the indicators mirrored that election -- Reagan trailed until the last three weeks, Carter's emphasis on an economic "malaise" and so forth. Clearly I was wrong. I'm not wrong in my criticisms of things like the Obama economy. Obama is a socialist and his policies portend serious structural problems (perhaps even economic collapse) down the road. The sinking stock market today shows that I am not alone. Second, his foreign policy is also a chaotic mess and there is no person in his administration that indicates the policy might change. The Christians in the mid-east will continue to suffer largely by America's hand. … [Read more...]

GOA Abp. Demetrios attends Easter breakfast at White House

GREEK ORTHODOX ARCHDIOCESE OF AMERICA 8-10 East 79th St. New York, NY 10075-0106 * Tel: (212) 570-3530 Fax: (212) 774-0237 www.goarch.org - Email: communications@goarch.org Contact: PRESS OFFICE Stavros Papagermanos pressoffice@goarch.org April 7, 2010 ARCHBISHOP DEMETRIOS ATTENDS EASTER PRAYER BREAKFAST AT WHITE HOUSE WASHINGTON – His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios of America attended yesterday, an Easter Prayer Breakfast for approximately 70 Christian religious leaders at the White House, as a guest of President Barack Obama and had a seat of honor at the President’s table. The President after welcoming the religious leaders as “brothers and sisters in Christ” said he wanted to join them and “continue the Easter celebration of our risen Savior, and to reflect on the work to which His promise calls all of us.” … [Read more...]

U.S. Ambassador praises Egypt’s Freedom of the Press and Human Rights; Copts say otherwise

A friend sent me this translation of an original article in Arabic here. During her visit to Tanta University Scobey praises Freedom of the Press and Human Rights in Egypt Monday 14th of December 2009 Gharbia: Hend Adel Margaret Scobey, the United States of America’s Ambassador to Egypt affirmed that there is no differentiation between minorities in Egypt and described it as the country of civil coexistence, where there are some cases that reach the level of slight conflict, that Egypt aims to solve before they develop, in light of it enjoying full freedom of the press and Human Rights organizations work there in complete freedom. … [Read more...]

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew on the Hill

At the Joint House and Senate Luncheon in his Honor Hosted by Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid Remarks and Toast of His All Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew The Rayburn Room The Capitol Direct Archdiocesan District Washington, DC November 4, 2009 --------- Madame Speaker Pelosi and Majority Leader Reid, Your Eminence Archbishop Demetrios and brother Hierarchs, Honored guests and friends, beloved spiritual children in the Lord, Standing again in this Capitol – this people’s house of democracy and freedom – whose dome rises above every other building in this capital city of the American Nation, our mind travels back in time to twelve years ago, when both we and the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople were honored by this august body with the Congressional Gold Medal. At that time, we made a commitment and a pledge to you, the elected representatives of the great American people. We promised you that "in the spirit of … [Read more...]

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew at the White House

From the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America (Nov. 4, 2009): President Obama receives Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew in the Oval Office WASHINGTON – His All Holiness, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew was received today at the White House in the Oval Office by President Barack Obama. This reciprocal visit to the one paid by President Obama earlier this year (April 7, when he made his first overseas visit to a Muslim country, Turkey) followed up on their conversations at that time on the subjects of the recently concluded environmental symposium on the Mississippi River and the re-opening of the Theological School of Halki. “The President with his kindness and openness received me and my delegation with love and honor,” said His All Holiness to the Press as he was exiting the White House. … [Read more...]

Brilliant

President Obama and Pope Benedict met in Rome today. As reported by Reuters: Obama and Benedict held private talks for about 40 minutes in the pope's frescoed study in the Vatican's apostolic palace and the Vatican said bioethics and life issues were a central part of the discussion. In a surprise move, the pontiff gave Obama a booklet explaining Vatican opposition to practices such as abortion and embryonic stem cell research, which Obama supports. The booklet was Dignitas Personae, described by the news service as the document that "defends life from conception to natural death." And a Vatican statement issued after the meeting said the topics discussed included "the defense and promotion of life and the right to abide by one's conscience." Here's what the president will find in the opening sentences of the document: The dignity of a person must be recognized in every human being from conception to natural death. This fundamental principle expresses a great “yes” … [Read more...]

Obama in the Blue Mosque

Obama in the Hagia Sophia (April 2009)

President Barack Obama, center, is accompanied by Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, rear center, and White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, fourth from right, rear, as he visits the Blue Mosque in Istanbul, Turkey, Tuesday, April 7, 2009. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak) … [Read more...]

Patr. Bartholomew to White House meeting?

The Greek newspaper Kathimerini is reporting that President Obama will meet Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew when he is in Istanbul on April 7 during a visit to Turkey. "However," the paper said, "the US president is also due to hold a one-on-one meeting with the patriarch in the White House on November 3." The plans were firmed up when Archbishop Demetrios met with the president on March 25 during a White House reception in honor of Greek Independence Day, Kathimerini said. During the public ceremony, the archbishop compared the president to Alexander the Great. While in Washington, he also attended a reception hosted by the Ambassador of Greece to the United States Alexandros Mallias at the Greek Embassy. Minister of Justice Nikolaos Dendias represented the Greek Government at the Independence Day events. Meanwhile, the tug-of-war between, on one side, the Turkish government and, on the other, the U.S. Greek lobby and the Greek government, continues over a proposed meeting … [Read more...]

Archbishop Demetrios Compares Obama to Alexander the Great

Archbishop Demetrios, leader of the largest Orthodox Christian jurisdiction in the United States, compared President Obama to Alexander the Great at a Greek Independence Day celebration at the White House. Politico, noting that the president got "a little unexpected flattery" from the hierarch about his crisis management skills, said the archbishop told Obama: "Following the brilliant example of Alexander the Great...you will be able to cut the Gordian knot of these unresolved issues." The unexpected flattery was so over that top that it embarrassed the president and earned the archbishop a link on the Drudge Report. In the video, someone can be heard hailing the president as an "honorary Greek." Just a hunch, but I bet that little hosanna came from one of the Obamakis and Bidenopoulos set. Back story. In the last few days, the Greek Lobby has been in overdrive over a report in Hurriyet that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was to meet with Turkish Cypriot President Mehmet … [Read more...]

Obama Waffling on Armenian Genocide Declaration?

The Los Angeles Times reports that the Obama administration "is hesitating on a promised presidential declaration that Armenians were the victims of genocide in the early 20th century, fearful of alienating Turkey when U.S. officials badly want its help." The L. A. Times, in "Obama wavers on pledge to declare Armenian genocide," says Obama and "other top administration officials" were to officially designate the 1915 killings of Armenians by the Ottoman Turks as genocide. But the administration also has been soliciting Ankara's help on Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran and other security issues amid Turkish warnings that an official U.S. statement would imperil Turkey's assistance. Administration officials are considering postponing a presidential statement, citing progress toward a thaw in relations between Turkey and neighboring Armenia. Further signs of warming -- such as talk of reopening border crossings -- would strengthen arguments that a U.S. statement could imperil the … [Read more...]

Mor Gabriel, Halki and Obama

A very timely story yesterday in the Wall Street Journal by Andrew Higgins about a land dispute between Syriac Orthodox monastery Mor Gabriel and Turkish authorities. Also yesterday, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, during a stop in Ankara, announced that President Obama will be visiting Turkey "in a month or so." She said this toward the end of her public remarks: I reiterate the Obama Administration’s support for Turkey’s membership in the European Union. The United States believes it will strengthen Turkey, Europe, and our transatlantic partnership. The United States continues to support the UN-sponsored talks now taking place to achieve a settlement of the Cyprus conflict based on reunification of the island as a bi-zonal, bi-communal federation. We talked about Turkey’s democracy, its multiethnic heritage, and in that context, I raised the importance that we place on reopening the Halki Seminary and efforts to reach out to all of Turkey’s communities. For … [Read more...]

Bishop Savas to head GOA Office of Church and Society

Greek Orthodox Archbishop Demetrios announced yesterday that Bishop Savas of Troas, most recently the chancellor of the archdiocese, has been named director of the Office of Church and Society. The bishop will be charged with developing "programs and ministries that promote a creative Orthodox Christian engagement with contemporary societal and cultural realities." Readers of this blog will recall the effusive praise with which Bishop Savas greeted the election of Barack Obama, rejoicing that "this is the day that the Lord has made!" Yesterday, the Obama administration moved to rescind a Bush administration regulation, put in place in December, that cuts off federal funding for medical facilities that would force doctors, nurses and other health care workers to participate in practices, such as abortion, that "they feel violates their personal, moral or religious beliefs." The move to lift the so-called "conscience rule," which is subject to a 30 day public comment period, was … [Read more...]