They hate him who reproves in the gate, and they abhor him who speaks the truth. (Amos 5:10)

December 31, 2006

Prot. N. 181

To the Very Reverend Protopresbyters, the Very Reverend and Reverend Clergy and Beloved Faithful of the Diocese:

In the day of the Prophet Amos, the Vision of God’s Will was met with ridicule and dismissal. No one in society wanted to hear that God’s Law was being broken and that His Justice was being ignored. The poor were being abused and taken advantage of. The powerless and the weak were trampled on for the sake of a materialistic society. 

The Prophets spoke then, but they were ignored. “The lion roared, the Lord God has spoken”, and the prophecies of God’s command were proclaimed. But society continued on its way of eating and drinking like normal, “stretching out themselves upon their couches” and “singing idle songs” (Amos 6:4).

As it was then, so it is now. The Orthodox Church has proclaimed the sin of abortion. And society has responded by sanctioning infanticide as a phase of the feminist agenda. It has responded by renaming the unborn child as fetal tissue, so it could be more easily disposed of. It has responded by making abortion a matter of personal opinion, and not of right and wrong.

It is God alone Who is the origin of all life. It is He Who holds the key to life and death. It is man, in his arrogance, who usurps the authority of the Almighty, who in his pride deliberates over the validity of God’s divine decrees, who justifies his sin and pacifies the screaming of his conscience in the face of the shedding of innocent blood. We have forgotten the absolute and unchanging nature of Scripture’s declaration, “Thus says the Lord…”.

The blessings of America remain as a contingency: we will keep our freedom and our liberal comforts only if we heed the call of Amos who proclaimed in a voice that echoes across the ages: “Seek the Lord and live!” (Amos 5:6).

I urge you, therefore, to make every effort to support the National Right to Life March in Washington, DC on Monday, January 22, 2007. Support freely and generously the work of Crisis Pregnancy Centers in your area. And be confident, without equivocation, in the hard and simple truth that abortion is sin, and cannot be countenanced or supported in the Orthodox Church.

Assuring you of my Archpastoral supplication for the day on which legalized abortion will end, with blessing I remain

Most sincerely yours in Christ,

+ Metropolitan Nicholas

www.acrod.org - Metropolitan Nicholas is the Bishop of the American Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Diocese of Johnstown


Teachings of Christ

“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.” (Matthew 22:37-40 ESV)

Pentecost

Blessed are You, O Christ our God, * Who has shown the fishermen to be all wise, * by sending down to them the Holy Spirit, * and through them You have caught the whole world in Your net. * O Lover of Mankind, glory to You. (Troparion - Tone 8)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen.

When the Most High descended, confusing tongues, * He divided the nations; * but when He distributed the tongues of fire, * He called all to unity; * and, with one voice, * we glorify the Most Holy Spirit. (Kontakion - Tone 8)

Random Proverb

Honor the Lord with your wealth and with the firstfruits of all your produce; then your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will be bursting with wine. (Proverbs 3:9,10 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

Christ is Risen! 
O the marvel! the forbearance! the immeasurable meekness! 
The Untouched is felt; the Master is held by a servant, 
And He reveals His wounds to one of His inner circle. 
Seeing these wounds, the whole Creation was shaken at the time. 
Thomas, when he was considered worthy of such gifts, 
Lifted up a prayer to the One Who deemed him worthy, 
Saying, "Bear my rashness with patience, 
Have pity on my unworthiness and lighten the burden 
Of my lack of faith, so that I may sing and cry, 
`Thou art our Lord and God.'" 


Kontakia of Romanos, V. 1, On Doubting Thomas