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Religious Articles Archive
Years: 2007 | 2006 | 2004 | 2003 | 2002-prior |
Year 2004
Orthodox Deafening Silence on 2004 Elections
A deafening silence on vital election matters seems to have engulfed most of the Orthodox Christian Churches in America. As one of the most monumental elections in our nation's history approaches, with two candidates that hold sharply contrasting views on key moral issues, there are little if any official declarations or concrete guidance coming from any of the Orthodox Christian jurisdictions in the United States. [10/19/2004]
God Isn't to Blame for Asian Casualties
To find the same comfort, those who shape their lives according to the doctrines of secular fundamentalism, take an evident delight in stating the usual “Where is God now?” questions after tragedies, especially those natural ones like earthquakes that can’t be blamed on human actions.
On Fasting - St. John Chrysostom
Fasting is the change of every part of our life, because the sacrifice of the fast is not the abstinence but the distancing from sins. Not only should the mouth fast, but the eyes and the legs and the arms and all the other parts of the body should fast as well. Let the hands fast, remaining clean from stealing and greediness.
Free Press & Pulpit
Patrick Henry Reardon - It is my own persuasion that active patriotism is not optional, and merely sentimental patriotism is no substitute. I believe that we Christians must not separate our Christian faith from our moral responsibilities to this country. [Nov. 2004]
Calling Evil Good
If a comparison of terrorists shooting innocent children in the back to the proponents and practitioners of partial-birth abortion seems to be a stretch, you are a victim yourself; having been sold a bill of goods by the pro-abortion crowd. [Sept. 2004]
The Lovely Dragon of Choice - The Freedom Not to Be Free
Choice is the dragon of our day. It smuggles into its charcoal-smelling barrow not goblets and gilt pommels but human souls, one after another after another, enticing them there with “choices,” all of them more or less trivial, while it sits upon the hoard and snores away in its inhuman sleep. [Oct. 2004]
The Media's Fear of God
Liberal journalists believe that Americans would be distressed to know that Bush engages in such outlandish behavior as daily Bible-reading, prayer, and allowing his spiritual life to inform his political one. [Sept. 2004]
The Nativity Sermon of St. John Chrysostom
Today Bethlehem resembles heaven, hearing from the stars the singing of angelic voices and, in place of the sun, witnessing the rising of the Sun of Justice! Ask not how this is accomplished, for where God wills, the order of nature is overturned. For He willed He had the powers He descended. He saved. All things move in obedience to God.
A Jew says 'Merry Christmas'
There is nothing inclusive about silencing the 90 percent of Americans who celebrate the birth of Jesus. Christians, after all, have freedom of religion, too -- and that freedom shelters my faith no less than it does theirs. Christmas is a blessing for all Americans. May yours be filled with joy.
Those who put up decorations make society better
Life is greatly enhanced for Americans of all faiths by people who take the time and pay the expense to put up Christmas displays. If you celebrate Christmas and you put up no public display, please reconsider. It is one way you can immediately have a positive impact on our society.
Who's Afraid of Christmas?
The Christmas Deconstruction Alliance just does not get it. They are dumbfounded as they have not been able to secularize Christmas. They throw tantrums because of the tenacity with which the vast majority of us hold onto our Christian beliefs and traditions.
Goodbye Christmas?
The attempts to de-Christianize Christmas are as absurd as they are relentless. The U.S. today is the most tolerant and diverse society in history. It celebrates all faiths with an open heart and open-mindedness that, compared to even the most advanced countries in Europe, are unique.
Keeping Christ in Christmas
When the pope has to remind his Catholics that celebrating the birth of Christ is "an element of our culture and of art, but above all a sign of faith in God," isn't it pretty much gone?
Merry Christmas, Charlie Brown!
Christmas is the birth of our Lord, Jesus Christ. It is the beginning of the fulfillment of God's Promise to His children: eternal life. Christmas is only a step in our journey towards the Resurrection.
The greatest sin
When a person commits evil in God's name, however, he destroys the greatest hope for goodness to prevail on earth -- widespread belief in a God who demands goodness (ethical monotheism). There is nothing as evil as religious evil.
Abortion Pain
Fr. John Breck - A number of Orthodox Christians have been especially concerned with another aspect of abortion pain: the anguish experienced by so many "aborted mothers" who suffer from what is now called "post-abortion syndrome." [11/25/2004]
Ligonier Fears and Future [Orthodox Unity]
Our situation in the New World is an anomaly within Orthodoxy and has more in common with Protestantism. Overlapping jurisdictions are an innovation without precedent, need, or canonical justification; so, too, would be the inorganic remanufacturing of the Church's services and disciplines into an "American Orthodoxy". [11/23/2004]
Christians Eat Lions in 2004
The Democrats have spent decades making life miserable for Christians. On Election Day, Christians returned the favor. [11/8/2004]
Ecumenical Councils of War
It strikes me as a singular sort of delusion to imagine that the Eastern Orthodox tradition is any more hospitable to pacifism than the Western Catholic tradition, given the utter absence of pacifist tenets from Orthodoxy’s teachings, liturgy, or history. [Nov. 2004]
The moral of the story
We're supposed to ignore that liberals routinely take target practice on Christians, mocking them at will, painting them as intolerant bigots and, well, simpletons.
War and Peace: What does Orthodoxy teach us?
Fr. Alexander F. C. Webster, Ph.D., is the co-author, with Dr. Darrell Cole, of The Virtue of War: Reclaiming the Classic Christian Traditions East and West, published in 2004 by Regina Orthodox Press. The book explains the moral teachings known as the “justifiable war tradition,” and their importance today.
Bishop Tikhon of the OCA quotes Noam Chomsky
Bishop Tikhon: "One might very well agree with Noam Chomsky that terrorism is nothing new, and that what made 9/11 particularly painful was the realization that for the first time we were the victims, rather than the perpetrators of it."
Right Alliances
The fact that Protestant, Catholic, and Orthodox Christians are able to come together as we do tonight, in a spirit of fellowship and good will, is a tribute to our nation and to its great tradition of religious pluralism. Of course, it has taken us some time, we Protestants, Catholics, and Orthodox Christians, to get to this point. [Nov. 2004]
A Jew defends the cross
For the overwhelming majority of millions of citizens of Los Angeles County over the past 50 years, this seal has aroused no opposition. But a few months ago, someone with a magnifying glass at the ACLU discovered that the smallest item on the seal was a cross.
Sunday Television Not Safe for Children Anymore
I don’t want ABC pumping garbage into my home when I am watching a child-safe program. I will stop buying products from the sponsors of trash TV until they clean up their act. [11/05/2004]
Ecumenical Councils of War
It strikes me as a singular sort of delusion to imagine that the Eastern Orthodox tradition is any more hospitable to pacifism than the Western Catholic tradition, given the utter absence of pacifist tenets from Orthodoxy’s teachings, liturgy, or history. [Nov. 2004]
Alleluia - Rejoice for Truth has Won! (MP3 - Orthodox Hymn)
Orthodox choir song. LISTEN! Rejoice, for the will of God has been done. We have a President that will stand for life and freedom and do the right thing! Truth and righteousness have won over falsehood and lies.
A Clear Moral Vision
Rev. Robert Sirico - It is not enough for people to be free; the more profound question is: What ought I do with my freedom? In many ways, religion, faith, commitment to God and lives of integrity and virtue, help in the construction of a society that promotes generosity, moral accountability, stability and peace.
10 questions to ask when Orthodox Peace Fellowship visits your parish
Fr. Johannes L. Jacobse - In the document “A Plea for Peace,” OPF posits a doctrine of moral equivalence when it states that, "Saddam Hussein is an enemy of the U.S. and of the people of Iraq, but we declare that there are better ways to respond to terrorism than to respond in kind." [10/26/2004]
Where is the Orthodox Voice in America?
Paul Fuller - Why are Orthodox Christians still only known for their ethnic cultures, which one sees in front of that church's name? Why do people believe that Greek, Russian, Antiochian, Romanian, Bulgarian, etc. Orthodox Churches are different in theology and practice?
Belief without advocacy is dead
"Democracy depends on people of conviction expressing their views, confidently and without embarrassment. This give-and-take is an American tradition, and religious believers play a vital role in it.
A Christian Can Be a Christian or a Liberal, But He Can’t Be Both
For the "Christian" to lean politically to the left means that he must blow off huge chunks of the Bible and replace the scripture with the make-believe notions of postmodernism’s malleable "Christ."
Christianity and the Presidential Election
Fr. Johannes L. Jacobse - The upcoming presidential election may be one of the more critical in our lifetime. There are stark differences between the candidates on pressing moral questions like abortion, gay marriage, embryonic stem cell research, and other issues. Whoever wins the presidency will have enormous influence over what direction the culture takes concerning these issues. [10/17/2004]
Faith and Patriotism
Charles J. Chaput - Democracy depends on people of conviction expressing their views, confidently and without embarrassment. This give-and-take is an American tradition, and religious believers play a vital role in it. We don't serve our country - in fact we weaken it intellectually - if we downplay our principles or fail to speak forcefully out of some misguided sense of good manners.
Casualties of the Culture War
Fr. Johannes L. Jacobse: Orthodox Christians must approach the vexing problems of contemporary culture—most especially the carnage brought about by abortion—with a renewed resolve to live and preach the Gospel of Christ. The Gospel of Christ can defeat the dehumanizing secularism of our age. It requires that Orthodox Christians engage the culture with intelligence, courage, and even sacrifice. [10/6/04]
Out Now: Why the Orthodox Churches Should Quit the NCC
A new study of the World Council of Churches and the National Council of Churches confirms that the movement presents a skewed and highly selective picture of rights violations that, perversely, focuses overwhelmingly on countries that provide the greatest degree of freedom and prosperity for its citizens. [Oct. 2004]
Medically Assisted Procreation: Second Thoughts
If the Pope can speak out as clearly, courageously and firmly as he does, can we hope for the same from our own Orthodox bishops, theologians and medical professionals? [Oct. 2004]
Christianity and the Presidential Election
Fr. Johannes L. Jacobse: The upcoming presidential election may be one of the more critical in our lifetime. There are stark differences between the candidates on pressing moral questions like abortion, gay marriage, embryonic stem cell research, and other issues. Whoever wins the presidency will have enormous influence over what direction the culture takes concerning these issues. [10/17/2004]
Christian Spokesman: Anti-Religion Site Crosses the Line
A Christian faith and family research center is calling for action against the operators of a website that advocates an orchestrated campaign of arson and violence against churches and religious people. [Sep. 2004]
The Truth About Men & Church
If a father does not go to church, no matter how faithful his wife’s devotions, only one child in 50 will become a regular worshipper. If a father does go regularly, regardless of the practice of the mother, between two-thirds and three-quarters of their children will become churchgoers.
When churches head left
America's mainline protestant churches are in trouble. One sign is shrinking membership. Another is turning their political policymaking over to fringe leftists whose deepest instinct is to blame America and pummel Israel whenever possible.
"Orthodox Christians and Presidential Elections" - Fr. Hans responds
Fr. Hans Jacobse: In Dr. Bouteneff's article Liberal ideas are superficially compared to conservative ideas and since neither the Democrat nor Republican party has a lock on all the correct ideas, the reader is led to that tired conclusion that choosing one candidate over the other is always "the lesser of two evils." [9/27/2004]
Presbyterian Preachiness
What do the Presbyterian Church and the Syrian Baathist dictatorship have in common? They have both pledged themselves to cutting off ties with American firms doing business with Israel.
Why I am a Conservative
This was a conversion in the truest sense of the word, and it is a conversion that I believe every cradle Orthodox Christian in America needs to undergo. I no longer accept that morality is relative. I see that evil is real and that each of us must make responsible choices every day based on right and wrong, good and evil. [9/4/04]
A Liar and the Father of Lies - The Devil
Various schools of theology delete from Scripture and Tradition any word or belief they find embarrassing or out of phase with current fads and isms. They want to present the Christian faith without causing offense to the modern world, and so the Devil must go. [Sept. 2004]
'Judeo-Christian' Meaning
While the Western world has consisted of many Christian countries and consists today of many secular countries, only America has called itself Judeo-Christian. America is also unique in that it has always combined secular government with a society based on religious values.
The Indicative of Christian Morality
George Strickland: It seems to me that the entire tradition of denying the reality of evil, from the Greeks on down to contemporary social workers, constitutes a massive trivialization of the phenomenon. [9/15/04]
Secularism With Its Gloves Off
Attacks on Christianity are nothing new, but a book now hitting the nation's bookstores argues that faith in God is not only out of date, but dangerous.
Reorganizing Religion
A bishop begins a diocesan bureaucracy as soon as he hires a secretary or convenes a small group to help him with the finances. But some subtle line is crossed, and crossed quickly, when these people and their work become authorities in their own right and work more by rule and process than personal relation. [Sept. 2004]
Church Groups Foggy Up Stem Cell Initiative
Another campaign of stem cell disinformation and misdirection is in full swing in California. The sponsors of Proposition 71, the "California Stem Cell Research and Cures Act," are promoting a measure that would allow researchers a constitutional right to experiment on embryonic stem cells. Group backing this hideous initiative is also claiming Orthodox support!
Faith isn't foolish
In our world of creature comforts and great prosperity, when we devote many hours of our lives to being entertained, when it seems the masses worship celebrities more than God, faith appears to some as more anciently foolish than ever. [June 2004]
A Hard Lesson on Home Schools
Today, the rise of secularism, and government control of much of the educational establishment, has blinded many Christians to the value of schooling aimed at excellence and informed by faith. The one surefire way to spur more competition among schools is parental choice–exercised, for instance, by choosing to educate children at home.
Between Heaven & Earth
Few words have suffered a worse fate than the word asceticism. It makes us think of someone who is strict, stern, and so excessively and pointlessly austere that he is unable to appreciate the delights of creation. [April 2004]
One God, Under Fire
Fifty years has produced a much different America since the first time the Pledge of Allegiance was uttered on behalf of a nation 'under God.'
The Media's Fear of God
Liberal journalists believe that Americans would be distressed to know that Bush engages in such outlandish behavior as daily Bible-reading, prayer, and allowing his spiritual life to inform his political one. [Sept. 2004]
The heart vs. the Bible
Dennis Prager - That's the major reason for the great divide within America and between America and much of Europe. The majority of people use their heart -- stirred by their eyes -- to determine what is right and wrong. A minority uses their mind and/or the Bible.
What Happened to Diversity of Faith?
We are living in denial. It’s doubtful we can learn to embrace diversity when we prohibit any exposure to our most fundamental differences. [July 2004]
Pastors, Priests, and Politics – Part I
For a minister to seek unity when secularists are trashing and rewriting scripture with impunity, is to side with evil and allow darkness to succeed. On these kinds of issues, the minister cannot group hug the secular or quasi-Christian thugs who profess them.
Pastors, Priests, and Politics – Part II
If we believe in the importance – yes, the primacy – of God in our personal and national lives, clergy and congregants must become involved in the issues of the day, political and otherwise. We are called to obey God rather than men, and God has called his leaders to be involved in civic affairs, and to represent Christ and his word in all areas of society.
Open Season on Christians
Rabbi Daniel Lapin: "It’s open season on Christians, the last unprotected minority in America. Her third lesson, well, I’ll tell you that in a minute."
Fact, Fable, and Darwin
There is no plausible scientific theory of the origin of species! Darwin himself was not sure he had produced one, and for many decades every competent evolutionary biologist has known that he did not. [Sept. 2004]
A Sensible Growth in God
The Christian gospel is about living truth, not insubstantial human fantasies. It offers a genuine experience of human progress, one that can be lived by every believer in Christ in the present. It looks back and looks forward and looks right now to Christ, “the same yesterday, today, and forever.” [June 2004]
Pass-Fail 101
Christian colleges continue to outperform their secular counterparts in recruitment of new students. And yet the pressure on these colleges to conform to the normative characteristics of a secular education is intense, from within and without. [June 2004]
Can the Church Still Impact American Culture?
Nothing that Christians or pro-family groups have done has seemed to stop American society from rushing headlong down the tracks to moral oblivion. It appears that secularism and postmodern relativism have successfully teamed up to overthrow Judeo-Christianity as the dominant philosophical force in our culture.
For the life of me ... what about life?
Did you ever read or catch something in the news that was so stupid, so asinine that right then and there you threw up your hands or just screamed, or just threw up your hands and screamed?
Cruciform Education
Challenges to Christian higher education also often come from Christians, and these are, for Christians, more weighty because they come clothed in the gospel. Many Christians sense that Christian scholarship is incompatible with the simplicity of the New Testament message and is a threat to the centrality of Christ and of faith.
Episcopal Duties
Why are only the Roman Catholic bishops speaking out against public figures? Alas, we are not aware of a single authoritative word of episcopal reproach to the many politicians among the Eastern Orthodox in this country who openly and energetically support abortion.
Presbyterian church defames Christianity
Dennis Prager: "I have argued in this column that the greatest sin is committing evil in God's name. As bad as the evil committed by secularists, such as communists and Nazis, has ever been, the most grievous evil is that which is committed in the name of God."
A Sensible Growth in God
The Christian gospel is about living truth, not insubstantial human fantasies. It offers a genuine experience of human progress, one that can be lived by every believer in Christ in the present.
Faith isn't foolish
In our world of creature comforts and great prosperity, when we devote many hours of our lives to being entertained, when it seems the masses worship celebrities more than God, faith appears to some as more anciently foolish than ever.
Confronting Christophobic Thugs
Our nation is totally open to anyone and to anything, that is, unless, of course, you’re a Christian. And if that’s the case, then you’re likely to get more sympathy from a badger with minimal sleep than you will from the liberal left who are hard at work making your life hard.
Caesar & Conscience
When Paul appeals, therefore, to the conscience with regard to civil authority, he exalts political responsibility to a very high order, recognizing that the Christian stands within a social context of grave and radical obligations. For the Christian, that is to say, political responsibility, including civil obedience, is not optional. [May 2004]
Does atheism require more faith?
Christianity has nothing to fear from a thorough investigation of the evidence. It is healthy to have doubts and work through resolving them, which only fortifies your faith and better positions you to withstand challenges you may encounter along the way.
Between Heaven & Earth
The Fathers of the Church repeatedly affirmed that God became man so that man might be made divine. Of course, this does not mean that man turns into a deity. [4/2004]
Restlessness
What happens when Christian stores start selling on Sunday.
One-sided Culture War
Liberals deny that Christianity and its values are under assault, saying that Christians are in the majority and majorities don't endure discrimination.
Society's Truth Must Be God-Centered
An Alabama pastor says it's time for churches in America to focus on the truth of God's Word in order to have an impact on society.
Love To Pray To Our Lord God
Prayer itself is born of love. The person, who seeks to improve his or her prayer life, so that it may become a perfect line of communication with our Lord God, will quickly find that prayer is founded on love – our love for God and His love for us.
The Unbearable Reality of Love
In this film we see with unbearable clarity how Jesus descended into the personal Hell each of us carries around - and purged it clean.
True Meaning of Easter
Easter, or Pascha as we call it in the Orthodox tradition, is the feast of all feasts. Without Easter, the Christian religion is reduced to a nice set of ethical teachings.
Resurrecting the triumph of Easter
Every year at this time, various newsmagazines like to stoke up the fires of criticism against the Christian faith and challenge the truth of the Resurrection.
What does 'Judeo-Christian' mean?
While the Western world has consisted of many Christian countries and consists today of many secular countries, only America has called itself Judeo-Christian. America is also unique in that it has always combined secular government with a society based on religious values.
Should Orthodox Christians See "The Passion of the Christ?"
From my perspective the film is very Orthodox, even though I understand why some people might disagree. I thank Gibson for displaying the courage of his faith in creating this beautiful film.
"The Passion of the Christ" - A News Anchor's Perspective
The film grabs you in the first five seconds, and never lets go. The brutality, humiliation, and gore are almost inconceivable - and still probably does not go far enough... But this is no common man. This is the King of the Universe. The idea that anyone could or would have gone through such punishment is unthinkable - but this Man was completely innocent, completely holy - and paying the price for others. He screams as He is laid upon the cross, "Father, they don't know. They don't know..."
Review of "The Passion of the Christ"
Fr. Patrick Henry Reardon is an Orthodox priest in the Antiochian Archdiocese of America and edits Touchstone magazine: "everyone should see this film. That includes teenage kids, who will need a note from their parents to see a film that is rated 'R'"
The Passion of the Christless: Interpreting the words of fear
These folks and their ilk are not troubled by Gibson or by his film; they are frightened by the possibility that someone may discover Christianity, or someone else may have his or her faith strengthened.
New book: "The Virtue of War" - Orthodox Perspectives
Fr. Hans Jacobse: No one wants war. But just like the police officer who has to shoot an evil person intent on inflicting harm, so must nations. To call this defense (which is sometimes preemptive) "murder," either brands the police officer as great an evildoer as his antagonist or elevates the antagonist to the same moral plane as the officer. In argumentation the peace activist employs the former. In real life he creates the latter. In both cases the necessary moral distinctions have been obliterated.
A Faith-Based Case for Gulags (NCC)
Organizations like the NCC mask their political views in the vocabulary of the Christian tradition, making it appear that left wing politics is synonymous with Christian moral teaching. It's a well-crafted rhetorical ploy that allows the NCC to stake out the moral high ground and paint their conservative critics as uncaring and unsympathetic reactionaries.
Christianity Gets Bad Rap
Ann Coulter: "according to liberals, it's Christianity that causes murder. Like their Muslim friends still harping about the Crusades, liberals won't "move on" from the Spanish Inquisition. In the entire 350 years of the Spanish Inquisition, about 30,000 people were killed. That's an average of less than 100 a year. Stalin knocked off that many kulaks before breakfast."
Years: 2007 | 2006 | 2004 | 2003 | 2002-prior |


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