Orthodox response to coronavirus

Right worship involves obeying the laws, because of the aforementioned reasons I posted. All Orthodox clergy take a vow of pacifism to avoid any involvement in politics.
Samseau, where do you draw the line? For example, was it okay for Christians to hold secret services in the catacombs when the Romans banned Christianity outright?
I agree that in a lot of places we can work our way around the law, like with drive-in masses. And I'm with you that it would be very good if we did something like this instead of not giving people the Eucharist. But when the state's laws and God's laws are in conflict, I struggle to see any Biblical basis for obeying the state instead. And that's the situation we're in now. For example, James 5:14-15 instructs priests to anoint and pray over the sick, and state law in many places are not allowing that.
 

Roosh

Cardinal
From Prietstmonk Savatie Bastovoi:
Pressure is very hard and brutal, and people act stupidly. Be patient and wise. Do not tear your shirt and yell like Peter “Even if all fall away on account of you, I never will” Mathew 26:33. Become all a single body and heavy like a rock against which all those who fight us will be crashed. Be patient and have love for all. Our fight is not against the mortal bodies, but against the spiritual wickedness which dwell in the air and inspire the atheist rules ideas to scatter us. Be firm and humble. The war is not ending, it has just begun. What we have seen so far is the alignment of the fighting sides. Wait for your turn, all will be called to fight, each for what has been trained for: archers with archers, riders with riders, foot soldiers with foot soldiers. Love one another, receive advice and teachings humbly, as God gives His Grace to those who are humble, and resists the proud.
 

Blade Runner

Kingfisher
Good advice. I would say the bolder among us are just making known what is coming, so that the sheep are aware. I do not say that in pride, I say it because for some of us this discernment is at least in part, a gift. For this reason I've also said in previous posts that I will be charitable and "obedient" for a time. I too hope we all can come to a place where we become "as a rock."
 
Even Jesus’ apostles let Him down. Peter—the Rock of the Church—denied Him 3x.

That said, much of church leadership today followed the low points—rather than the high points—of discipleship. They can do better. They must do better. Hard to fight a spiritual conflict while rallying behind timid leaders.

I’ve found great illumination in “Everyday Saints and Other Stories.” Our Brothers in Russia withstood unbelievable persecution by the “Jewish Revolutionary Spirit” that Dr. Jones has written about. That same Spirit is behind both ClownWorld and the Covid hysteria. It will continue the assault.

This new type of spiritual conflict is unprecedented in the history of the Church. For example, the logic of this attack could make the Eucharist illegal. They are pushing for “contact tracing” which would reveal all believers. Technology is a force multiplier for Evil. Watch the “churches” with the Rainbow flag to be the first to further twist Scripture to fit this new narrative.

Some of you might consider becoming priests or monks. We will need some good strong men. I guarantee this century will see some incredible conflict.

Good news: As bad as things may get, they can only hurt the body. Guard your souls. Keep the Faith. We know how this ends.
 

Samseau

Owl
Gold Member
Yes, I agree, Bury.

Samseau, I understand what you are saying. But right worship doesn't always involve obeying the law. Any number of thought experiments will instantly show you that. Also, of course Christ didn't break the law of God, but similarly, he could have been accused of, claimed to have broken whatever BS laws were present at the time too.

In the end, I agree that western concepts of freedom and "rights" don't necessarily lead to spiritual advancement or salvation. My main message is that of the hypocritical state - don't tell us we are free or have rights if in reality it more closely resembles Soviet Russia. That's why my posts challenging the efficacy of leadership of most orthodox bishops I've come across deal in this subject. Discernment and craftiness, or creativity are key in those societies that have such challenges like present in communist countries. But we don't have that here, and it's not like people are coming with guns either to stop you from doing anything, in that vein.
Samseau, where do you draw the line? For example, was it okay for Christians to hold secret services in the catacombs when the Romans banned Christianity outright?
I agree that in a lot of places we can work our way around the law, like with drive-in masses. And I'm with you that it would be very good if we did something like this instead of not giving people the Eucharist. But when the state's laws and God's laws are in conflict, I struggle to see any Biblical basis for obeying the state instead. And that's the situation we're in now. For example, James 5:14-15 instructs priests to anoint and pray over the sick, and state law in many places are not allowing that.
So, I'm not saying we must obey the law if it means contradicting The Law. I'm saying we need to get around the law, like they did in the Roman times by practicing in secret. In this way, no laws were broken because they were never caught.

I think the quarantine laws can also be avoided quite easily with some clever mass layouts. We should not fight the law directly, as Jesus taught. In due time, God will change the laws for his people no matter what. We can also agitate to change the laws with secular means, without getting our Church in the crossfire. The last thing you want is to make the Church the center of fire, IMO. Lots of secular ways to undo the quarantine laws without making it a religious issue, such as supporting crazy firebrand charlatans like Elon Musk. Make the state fight guys like that, which indirectly benefits the Church in the process.

This follows Christ's maxim to be clever as serphants.
 

Blade Runner

Kingfisher
Lots of secular ways to undo the quarantine laws without making it a religious issue, such as supporting crazy firebrand charlatans like Elon Musk. Make the state fight guys like that, which indirectly benefits the Church in the process.

This follows Christ's maxim to be clever as serphants.
I'm with you here.
 
First time poster here, chiming in.

I belong to a small Russian language group, we are baptistic in practice, and we continued to meet at a home while lst the large church building we rent a room from has remained closed, preaching and praying.
My barber, a Greek- American baptist minister, attended and highly recommended the midweek bible study at our local Greek Orthodox Cathedral.

So now that I am interested and hungry to hear and to meet Orthodox men who seek logos in their lives, I am unable to because the cathedral is essentially closed. I also want to take my wife and family to the weekly community dinners that the Church’s Hellenic center puts on - but alas those are indefinitely cancelled.
Thank God I can enjoy fellowship and the Russian women’s home cooking every Sunday. I have a newfound respect for a sense of national and Christian community during this time.
Best apocalypse ever.
 

Aleks

Newbie
Across the pond, here in Serbia, we had the faithful receiving the Eucharist with no issues during the pandemic. It wasn't until we went full lockdown, with an all-day curfew over weekends (with no one allowed outside) that we kowtowed. Although, even then, there were people heading to church to receive the Eucharist. The church was eventually forced to parrot the "listen to the authorities" line.

So yeah, we cucked in the end too. However, the glimmer of hope in all of this was that the police, when catching the church goers, never arrested or fined them. They just sent them back. Jail time and fines were quite common if they caught you otherwise... it's as if they knew that this wasn't right.
 

DanielH

Woodpecker
Disease doesn't spread through the Eucharist, the Body and Blood of Christ. I got baptized in November, and I haven't gotten sick since then which includes taking communion every Sunday for 4 months until the lockdowns happened. The funny thing is the science agrees with Orthodoxy on this matter. Studies show no higher level of disease among people who take communion. You tell people this though, even other Orthodox people, and they lose their minds.
 

ABeast

Robin
I was conducting outdoor prayer circles for a few weeks but then I found a church that was "resisting" and decided to go there instead. Sadly it was only 3 people and a youtube stream with the pastor mainly trying to get money in his sermon. I got the sense that they were a good group of people that had been taken-in by some larger organization and given fancy gear. He talked about eating-dirt and getting your immune system going, but then threw in there that donations would eventually be making it to Africa to "build hospitals." So it's an evangelical sect with ties to Washington that is involved in medical stuff in Africa, I should have stayed the course!
 

BigLed

Newbie
I honestly can’t believe how easily our bishops gave up. They didn’t lift a finger in defense of the Church; the world told them they weren’t essential, and they agreed. We need more leaders and fewer bureaucrats; men who take the faith seriously rather than taking their cues from lawyers and insurance agents.
Exactly! And they all agreed to agree and cited directives from "on high", i.e. the unquestioned wisdom of the Patriarch, or Metropolitan. Are any of these higher ups doctors? Did any of them "do the research"? Some parishioners I have spoken to about this plan to be slow to return to the fold. What do I need this for? they ask, when the door is closed in my face?
 
The most important thing to remember is that Orthodoxy is true regardless of whether our bishops, at any given time, believe in it. The Church has survived leadership far worse than this - remember that one point, MOST bishops were Arians - and it will survive this as well. Our job is to defend the faith and stay true to Christ, Whose judgment of us depends on our own behavior and not that of our so-called leaders.
 

DanielH

Woodpecker
The most important thing to remember is that Orthodoxy is true regardless of whether our bishops, at any given time, believe in it. The Church has survived leadership far worse than this - remember that one point, MOST bishops were Arians - and it will survive this as well. Our job is to defend the faith and stay true to Christ, Whose judgment of us depends on our own behavior and not that of our so-called leaders.
Thanks for writing this. It's definitely hard right now but this is more the norm of Orthodoxy than not. In the Soviet Union, many bishops and abbots had to compromise with the Soviet regime. This would have been disheartening to the laity, but in retrospect the right move was to stay with your church or monastic community until they physically sent you to a gulag. Where the Russian Church was once compromised, now it is growing and is showing much promise. I expect similar conditions in the US, although instead of a gulag it might mean not being allowed to have a high earning cushy job and having your friends abandon you. That is tiny in comparison to the salvation of our souls.
 

Blade Runner

Kingfisher
Has anyone seen that certain OCA bishops or their priests have been addressing a concern of theirs over the website "Orthodox Ethos"? I saw a letter from a bishop recently that also included an anonymous letter from one of his priests. I can't say I have visited the overall or general site, but I have seen those podcasts and I didn't see any topic that shouldn't be thoroughly debated. The letter by the anon even suggested that Heers might be non-canonical or something. As I've said before, the OCA and GOA have really dropped the ball in handling this situation, and it doesn't instill much confidence. I foresee many more difficult challenges in the future which makes all of this even more distressing.
 

DanielH

Woodpecker
Has anyone seen that certain OCA bishops or their priests have been addressing a concern of theirs over the website "Orthodox Ethos"? I saw a letter from a bishop recently that also included an anonymous letter from one of his priests. I can't say I have visited the overall or general site, but I have seen those podcasts and I didn't see any topic that shouldn't be thoroughly debated. The letter by the anon even suggested that Heers might be non-canonical or something. As I've said before, the OCA and GOA have really dropped the ball in handling this situation, and it doesn't instill much confidence. I foresee many more difficult challenges in the future which makes all of this even more distressing.
Father Peter Heers is very much canonical and even has an Athonite monk in addition to a Greek Orthodox parish priest as contributors to Orthodox Ethos. His denunciation by our Church leaders seems especially silly when you consider the pornography and fear pandemic that have infected the world which get no attention from our Hierarchs.
 

Roosh

Cardinal
Has anyone seen that certain OCA bishops or their priests have been addressing a concern of theirs over the website "Orthodox Ethos"? I saw a letter from a bishop recently that also included an anonymous letter from one of his priests. I can't say I have visited the overall or general site, but I have seen those podcasts and I didn't see any topic that shouldn't be thoroughly debated. The letter by the anon even suggested that Heers might be non-canonical or something. As I've said before, the OCA and GOA have really dropped the ball in handling this situation, and it doesn't instill much confidence. I foresee many more difficult challenges in the future which makes all of this even more distressing.
If that's the case then they must be preaching the true faith.
 

Blade Runner

Kingfisher
Father Peter Heers is very much canonical and even has an Athonite monk in addition to a Greek Orthodox parish priest as contributors to Orthodox Ethos. His denunciation by our Church leaders seems especially silly when you consider the pornography and fear pandemic that have infected the world which get no attention from our Hierarchs.
I figured as much. Mr. Tselengides also is an esteemed professor of dogmatic theology at the University of Thessaloniki and seems quite insightful as well as reasonable.

It's like these OCA guys (don't even get me started on the problems with the GOA) don't understand just how nonsensical and damaging their messaging and response has been. They are taking orders from the most anti-christian of men who have no business even talking about faith or the church, since they participate in neither.
 
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