Metropolitan Iakovos Speaks Out on Illinois ‘Reproductive Health and Access Act’

Greek Orthodox Metropoiltan Iakovos has issued a “call to action” on an Illinois bill that right-to-life advocates describe as a state level Freedom of Choice Act. The metropolitan has posted a clear and forceful letter on the Metropolis of Chicago Web site condemning the proposed HB 2354 as unjust and a violation of “the very principles of our faith in Jesus Christ, the Life of the world.”

The metropolitan said HB 2354 “would affect all health care workers by removing their right to conscientious objection to abortion and related procedures, forcing them to participate in or provide abortions or face legal punishments. This bill would basically make the right to an abortion a fundamental human right in the State of Illinois.”


The forces that oppose religious freedom and are actually seeking to increase the number of abortions in our society are well organized, well funded, and well connected to the political process. It is high time for Christians to raise their own voices to demand their elected officials attend to the “weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faith.” Perhaps those who want this bill believe we will be distracted by the economic crisis facing our nation and affecting many of us personally. We must resist the temptation, especially during this Lenten season, to neglect this matter as “someone else’s problem.” None of us wants the government to come between us and our doctor. We should likewise not want the government to come between health care workers and their God. If we allow one step, we will never prevent the next.

Read the full text of the letter on the Orthodoxy Today website.


  1. As someone who is a frequent critic of the moral decline of Greek Orthodoxy in America I have to pause and praise the metropolis of Chicago for having the courage to speak out here. They deserve credit and positive feedback on this issue. Let’s hope there are more words like these in the future not less.

  2. Fr. Johannes Jacobse :

    Yup, give credit where credit is due. This is a good move by the Metropolis of Chicago.

  3. George Michalopulos :

    a very good move indeed. we need to print this out and/or send it out to all the other GOA bishops, letting them know that they got to support Iakovos and replicate his efforts in their dioceses.

  4. Scott Pennington :

    Given the unfortunate comments by Greek clergy over the past couple of weeks, I thought it important to laud this statement of Metropolitan Iakovos’. I hope that his actions inspire others.

  5. It appears that the link to the letter is now dead. Any idea of another source for it?

  6. George Michalopulos :

    Bravo to Metropolitan +Iakovos! There is hope yet for the GOA.

    • Not to take away from the actions of Metropolitan Iakovos, but I think there is hope for the GOA if Metropolitan Methodius speaks out against the abortion funding legislation that Sen. Olympia Snowe and Rep. Niki Tsongas have voted for in Congress and if Metropolitan Evangelos takes the same stand on the votes of Rep. John Sarbanes and if Metropolitan Gerasimos does the same with regard to Rep. Dina Titus.

      I hope that Metropolitan Iakovos will call his brother hierarchs to have the same courage to speak out against the moral decline of the Greek Orthodox Church evidenced in the four of the five GOA members serving in Congress who are spending tax dollars in direct opposition to the teaching and dogma of the Church at the cost of thousands of unborn lives.

  7. George Michalopulos :

    David, let’s not get ahead of ourselves…As much as I agree with you, I gotta tell you, getting Evangelos, Gerasimos, and Whoeverlseimos to reprimand, cajole, or counselt the people you mentioned would be like having a snowstorm in July. Still, one can always hope.

    • George, I agree with you, too, that there is little hope of getting the Greek hierarchs to do anything. That’s why there is little hope for the Greek Church to be anything other than an ethnic social club. It is the same reason that Greece has one of the highest abortion rates in Europe and the reason that some of the blame can be put at the feet of the Ecumenical Patriarch for going around the world promoting environmentalism and ignoring the deaths of thousands of Greek babies and not insisting that bishops of Greece proclaim and enforce the dogma of the Church with regard to the sanctity of life.

      Failing to get the bishops to do their duty does not absolve the bishops of that duty, nor the faithful of the duty to remind them of that duty.

      • To David,

        Regarding the Church of Greece see the following on right to life

        • Theodoros,

          I saw that link when you posted it on the other thread. I am glad to see that the Church of Greece has made a public declaration of the Orthodox view of abortion and made a direct application of it to public policy. Now let’s see if they will excommunicate every Greek politician who has voted to legalise abortion in Greece or who has thereafter voted for legislation to make it easier to obtain.

  8. BRAVO! God Grant Him Many Years!

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