August 27, 2014

Abp. Chaput: The American Experience and Global Religious Liberty

Roman Catholic Apb. Chaput

Read the essay below and you will understand why Orthodox Triumphalism is a dead end. The author is a Roman Catholic Archbishop and has an incisive grasp of American cultural and political history that applies as easily to American Orthodox as it does to American Catholics. We Orthodox don't really grapple with what it means to be Orthodox in America, not much anyway. Instead we substitute ideas about ethnic affiliation or Orthodox supremacy or other impoverished notions thinking that that they will be enough to sustain the Church in the end. They won't. Affirming the good where ever we find find it is a fundamental tenet of Orthodox thinking and that includes the positive good that Protestants in particular and Catholics after them have contributed to American culture. And there is much good worth considering in Abp. Chaput's analysis below. Source: Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Denver | Archbishop Charles J. Chaput March 1, 2011 - Most Rev. Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M. … [Read more...]

Russian Orthodox Leader Stands for Principle


Here we see it unfolding. Orthodox Christianity has much to give the world, and it begins with the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and a vigorous defense of biblical teaching through the wisdom and experience of our Orthodox tradition. And the teachings must be clear on the foundational issues that determine whether a culture and people lives or dies: the sanctity of life, marriage and family, sexuality, and the moral principles people have held to for centuries. This must be the message of Orthodox leaders. There is no other. Source: American Thinker The "great man" theory of history — that strong, unique, and highly influential individuals shape history (for good or ill) through their commanding personal characteristics that imbue them with power and influence over a specific period of time or during certain circumstances — may not be as widely accepted today among professional historians as in the past, but for many of us there is no denying what our own … [Read more...]

The Hidden Anti-Semitism of Christopher Hitchens and the New Atheists

Roman soldiers carrying the Golden Menorah as plunder.

Source: | George C. Michalopulos   Christopher Hitchens, perhaps the most famous of the New Atheists, has spent the better part of the past year engaging in a series of well-publicized debates, inveighing with his typical eloquence against theism in all its forms. Most of his correspondents have been Christians. Men such as Dinesh D’Souza, Bill Dembski, Tony Blair, and even his brother, Peter have debated him in public forums. (Interestingly enough, another atheist, David Berlinski, has debated him as well, taking him to task for his inability to see the carnage that atheism inevitably leads to.) Although Hitchens is suffering from esophageal cancer, he continues to speak with his customary eloquence and wit. Unfortunately, as of late much of his argumentation is devoid of rigorous logic. Instead he has taken an emotional tone, one based on resentment of the concept of a Deity and what He stands for rather than the cold and precise voice that is … [Read more...]

Peter and Helen Evans: Bishops wont act? Ask for a blessing, then do it yourself!


Peter and Helen Evans edit the Politics and Prayer website. We read comments on this blog and also hear people complaining that "the Bishops should proclaim..." a Day of Prayer or March for Life or any number of semi-public events. Let us suggest that we don't have to wait for a proclamation. We don't have to wait to be told what to do. Various cities around the United States are having their own March for Life, people regularly dedicate a day for prayer and fasting or hold vigil outside an abortion clinic, and invite anyone who wants to pray - even non-Orthodox - to join in. When you think about it, you probably don't want the Church council, or any other committee, involved to water down the event. Therefore, organize the event yourself, and then ask for a blessing. We Orthodox can stand in church, the public square, in municipal buildings and witness our faith, then ask for a blessing. We do not have to wait for a proclamation, just ask for a blessing. In the coming … [Read more...]

Is Europe waking up from its multi-cultural inebriation?

Austrian MP Ewald Stadler speaks to the position of the Turkish Ambassador and tells off some of his colleagues. During this, he addresses the lack of outrage when Catholic Archbishop Luigi Padovese was killed in Turkey and mentions the priests who have been killed. Stadler is certainly not an indifferent Catholic! … [Read more...]

Family of Shadows

Source: Front Page Magazine Frontpage Interview’s guest today is Garin K. Hovannisian, a graduate of UCLA and the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. A writer living in Los Angeles and Yerevan, Armenia, he has written for the Los Angeles Times, the New York Times, and Frontpage Magazine. He is the author of the new investigative memoir, Family of Shadows: A Century of Murder, Memory, and the Armenian American Dream [1] (HarperCollins), just released on September 21. FP: Garin K. Hovannisian, welcome to Frontpage Interview. I would like to talk to you today about your new book. Let’s begin with what inspired you to write it. Hovannisian: I don’t think I was so much inspired as I was haunted — possessed, in a way, by this dark and complex and deeply dramatic story of my family, which contains within it the complete history of Armenia, from the Genocide of 1915 to the present day. For me, writing Family of Shadows was an act not of inspiration but … [Read more...]

Patsourakos: Turkey Must End Its Control of Northern Cyprus

Map of divided Cyprus

George Patsourakos, commentator on the AOI blog and editor of the Theology and Society blog, argues Turkey must end its occupation of Cyprus. Source: Theology and Society For the first time since Turkey invaded the island of Cyprus in 1974, it was revealed by a former Turkish general this week that Turks secretly and intentionally burned down at least one mosque on the island at that time, in order to encourage Turks to be more aggressive in fighting Greeks.Retired Turkish General Sabri Yirmibesoglu -- speaking in an interview about military strategy on Turkey's Haberturk TV channel -- admitted that Turks burned (at least) a mosque to increase animosity toward Greeks in Cyprus. The retired general added that for Turkey it was "a rule of war to engage in acts of sabotage made to look as if they were carried out by the enemy." … [Read more...]

OCF to Present Interfaith Debate at University of Maryland


Ladies and gentlemen, brothers and sisters, light your candles! Source: The Orthodox Christian Fellowship of UMBC, in collaboration with the Secular Student Association of UMBC, is excited to present to the campus community and the general public a debate entitled, “The Source of Human Morality: Interfaith Debate.” How do we define morality? Do people need God to be moral? If not, where do our morals come from? Are good works behavioral, biological, or biblical? What does it mean to be human? The Secular Student Alliance at UMBC and the Orthodox Christian Fellowship at UMBC have come together to present a debate on the topic of human morality-- what is it, how do we know we have it, and where does it come from? Two presenters, with wildly different backgrounds and philosophies will face off on this topic, in the common interest of pursuing truth. Our Speakers: Matt Dillahunty is the president of the Atheist Community of Austin, and host of the popular public … [Read more...]

Saint John Chrysostom and 21st Century Christians

St. John Chrysostom

Taken from a lecture by Fr. Josiah Trenham and republished on Mystagogy. From Mystagogy: [The following portion of a lecture (all of which I recommend to be read) delivered by the Very Reverend Josiah Trenham in 2007 I found to be a very edifying piece on how Christians can implement at least some of the counsels of St. John Chrysostom into our own lives today. Of course, this is by no means exhaustive, but it gives us enough to think about and to hopefully inspire us to dig deeper into the rich treasures of one of the great Fathers of the Orthodox Church. - J.S.] Fr. Josiah Trenham: In this last portion of my lecture I would like to focus upon what I perceive to be several areas in which Saint John Chrysostom’s life and teachings may render the 21st century Christian particular assistance. The Church finds Herself in this new millennium faced by unique particularities, which demand an articulate word from the Holy Fathers to guide us through the unique challenges … [Read more...]

Mosque of conquest?


On Sept. 11, 2001, Muslim terrorists attacked the most prominent spot in America, the World Trade Center. In less than 10 years, the number of mosques in New York City has skyrocketed to over 140. Source: World Net Daily By William J. Federer Muslim groups are proposing a 13-story $100 million mosque in the most prominent spot in America – the heart of downtown New York City near the World Trade Center site. Is this mosque a sign of America's tolerance, or is it a sign of Muslim conquest? The past may hold answers: In 630, Muhammad led 10,000 Muslim soldiers into Mecca and turned the pagans' most prominent spot, the Ka'aba, into the Masjid al-Haram Mosque. In 634, Rightly Guided Caliph Umar conquered Syria and turned the Christians' most prominent spot, the Church of Job, famous for being visited by Saint Silva in the fourth century, into the Mosque of Job. … [Read more...]

A Mosque in New York for a Christian Church in Mecca

Source: Pajamas Media The principal mosque in Rome has a surface area of 30,000 square meters and can hold thousands of believers. The Christian church of Mecca has a surface area of zero square meters and can hold zero believers. In fact, there is no Christian church in Mecca. In other words, Rome is an open city and Mecca is a closed city. There has never been opposition by Muslims to the exclusive character of Mecca. Their main sanctuary is located there, and it is forbidden for non-believers to cross the city limits. No other sanctuary of any world religion is closed to members of different creeds. The Western Wall in Jerusalem, the Jews’ holiest site, can be visited by anyone — Muslims, Christians, or Buddhists. The Basilica of Saint Peter in the Vatican, the center of the Roman Catholic religion, is open to any person that wishes to visit its splendor. Hindu and Buddhist temples welcome anyone who walks in, but not the Muslims’ main mosque. Muslims claim … [Read more...]

Colson: Christians and Civil Disobedience

Source: Colson Center … [Read more...]