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Author Topic: Abortion again?  (Read 31560 times) Average Rating: 0
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Justinian
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« Reply #45 on: August 12, 2007, 02:04:06 AM »

As Christians, we have a responsibility to respond to this heinous practice with tough love. In America, we do this with our voice and our vote. As Christians, we tell people that we love them but that we cannot tolerate this practice. You cannot tell someone that you love them and remain silent when millions of babies are being slaughtered.

Well, let's not forget the hundreds of thousands of children that die needlessly everyday while we sit back and feed our face and spend our money on savvy material goods that we do not need. Heaven forbid we sacrifice and try to fix this problem, that would be a great inconvenience. It's more fun to be picky and choosy with sins.
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« Reply #46 on: August 12, 2007, 02:09:04 AM »

Well, let's not forget the hundreds of thousands of children that die needlessly everyday while we sit back and feed our face and spend our money on savvy material goods that we do not need. Heaven forbid we sacrifice and try to fix this problem, that would be a great inconvenience. It's more fun to be picky and choosy with sins.
You bring an excellent point, Justinian. But the thread is about abortion so let's stay on topic. If you wish to talk about children, and we all should be, maybe you should start another thread.
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« Reply #47 on: August 12, 2007, 02:18:36 AM »

I wouldn't be very surprised if the abortion figures given for Romania were true.
But the puzzlement and the amazement displayed by some here,  amazes me a bit.
I think it all comes from some unstated expectation/assumption that the average Orthodox should take his faith as seriously that the average Fundamentalist or Evangelical. This hasn't happened and although I wouldn't see it as a bad thing, still don't see it likely to ever happen.
most of the Romanian Orthodox-like any other Orthodox from Eastern Europe- are within the OC because they happened to be born to two Orthodox parents, that, at their turn, also happened to be born to Orthodox parents etc, and not because they have studied the faith and reached the conclusion that it is true, unlike the average Fundamentalist, I thing. So the discrepancy in commitment to one's faith lies in the fact that to be considered an Orthodox it is enough to have been baptized in infancy, while to enter an evangelical church one has to take a conscious decision etc.
I talk about the situation  in Eastern Europe: in the OC one enters almost automatically by birth, while in an Evangelical Church one enters by choice. That explains a lot the presence of commitement to one's faith or the lack thereof.
This was written mostly in reply to Jibrail Almuhajir's comment that the OC has failed in Romania.
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« Reply #48 on: August 12, 2007, 02:47:13 AM »

I wouldn't be very surprised if the abortion figures given for Romania were true.
But the puzzlement and the amazement displayed by some here,  amazes me a bit.
I think it all comes from some unstated expectation/assumption that the average Orthodox should take his faith as seriously that the average Fundamentalist or Evangelical. This hasn't happened and although I wouldn't see it as a bad thing, still don't see it likely to ever happen.
most of the Romanian Orthodox-like any other Orthodox from Eastern Europe- are within the OC because they happened to be born to two Orthodox parents, that, at their turn, also happened to be born to Orthodox parents etc, and not because they have studied the faith and reached the conclusion that it is true, unlike the average Fundamentalist, I thing. So the discrepancy in commitment to one's faith lies in the fact that to be considered an Orthodox it is enough to have been baptized in infancy, while to enter an evangelical church one has to take a conscious decision etc.
I talk about the situation  in Eastern Europe: in the OC one enters almost automatically by birth, while in an Evangelical Church one enters by choice. That explains a lot the presence of commitement to one's faith or the lack thereof.
This was written mostly in reply to Jibrail Almuhajir's comment that the OC has failed in Romania.

Excellent summation, Augustin717. I failed to take into consideration what should have been apparent. Yet, I still can't help but ponder the effectiveness of Romania's priests given what I've heard other Romanians say about them. We have excellent examples in Frs Roman Braga, Georgiu Calciu, Cleopa Ilie, etc...but from what I've been told, they're the exception and not the norm. 70% is higher than in America, and abortion is legal here. If the people are only following what their parents do, that's not genuine. If America, of all places, is sending priests to Romania to teach them Orhtodoxy, well, what else can I say but that the Church has failed in Romania.
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« Reply #49 on: August 12, 2007, 03:17:35 AM »

First, I'm dissapointed by your sarcasm. Calling me names does little, if anything, in bringing me to your side of the topic. Not to mention that it goes against being a Christian.
Thank you for clarifying your position and what exactly you meant by your phrase "lay down the Law of God".  Now I can see how well you have thought this out and that you aren't thinking in the purely judgmental, legalistic manner that your use of the phrase originally communicated.  However, you probably should refrain from judging someone's sarcasm as "going against being a Christian" when that sarcasm is directed at you--it looks too much as if you're passing judgment merely to defend yourself.  It's OK to say that you were offended, for that would be a truthful statement of your own response, but to make the unqualified statement that sarcasm is un-Christian is to make an absolute statement of absolute truth that may or may not be correct.
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« Reply #50 on: August 12, 2007, 11:41:42 AM »

You bring an excellent point, Justinian. But the thread is about abortion so let's stay on topic. If you wish to talk about children, and we all should be, maybe you should start another thread.

Justinian's comments were most relevant to this thread, I don't know that he intended it as bluntly as I'm going to put it, but I, unlike you, honestly do not care what people think of me personally. Wink

Until we can actually take care of those who are born into this world, we really have no business bringing more into the world. All restrictions on abortion do is bring into the world unwanted children that the parents are unable to support, they place greater strain on society and increase poverty. These fetus, if not aborted, would bring real poverty and hardship on the world. While I would certainly argue, for many reasons, that contraceptives are the prefered method of population control, abortion is an indispensable element that prevents the development of an entire segment of unwanted and uncared for people within the population, which would cause a greater strain on society as a whole. Until you can eliminate poverty and unwanted pregnancies, abortion is the lesser of two evils.
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« Reply #51 on: August 12, 2007, 11:47:46 AM »

Until we can actually take care of those who are born into this world, we really have no business bringing more into the world. All restrictions on abortion do is bring into the world unwanted children that the parents are unable to support, they place greater strain on society and increase poverty. These fetus, if not aborted, would bring real poverty and hardship on the world. While I would certainly argue, for many reasons, that contraceptives are the prefered method of population control, abortion is an indispensable element that prevents the development of an entire segment of unwanted and uncared for people within the population, which would cause a greater strain on society as a whole. Until you can eliminate poverty and unwanted pregnancies, abortion is the lesser of two evils. 

Blech.  Thankfully, most of us don't prescribe to this sort of preemptive Euthanasia that you're supporting.

With regards to possessions and whatnot, Christ said give to Caesar what is his, give to God what is His, and give all your stuff away.  So abortion is out from my perspective regardless of if you consider the fetus an object or a person.

I can't remember, who was it that said that you can tell about a society in how they treat their young?  Open support for abortion doesn't bode well for us.
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« Reply #52 on: August 12, 2007, 12:59:34 PM »

I can't remember, who was it that said that you can tell about a society in how they treat their young?  Open support for abortion doesn't bode well for us.

Something along those lines was said by the Pope of Rome, John Paul II, but that's hardly surprising. The quote is generally (even as used by the Pope) that a society is judged by how it treats its weakest member; anti-abortion advocates have interpreted this as the unborn. However, I believe it is a stretch of the definition of society to even include the unborn in this category. Those who are the truly weakest and most vulnerable members of society are the poor, the destitute, and those who have been rejected by the mores of society. These are exactly the people who anti-abortion laws harm, they don't hurt the aristocracy of America who, if they actually wanted to have an abortion could easily travel to another country or hire a doctor to do it in secret (as was often the case in the years before Roe v. Wade); they are an inconvenience to the Middle Classes, but one that can easily be overcome due to greater economic flexability than the poor; they are (like most restrictions of personal freedom) primarially targeted against the working and lower classes, they are the essence of barbarism, forcing at gunpoint pregnancy and childbirth on those who neither want it, nor can afford it.

Laws (or even social pressures) of this nature use minor mistakes in one's life against them, and dictate from on high that the person is not allowed to improve themselves, and must be condemned to a life of poverty. The net effect of the anti-abortion movement is to keep the poor poor and reinforce social, economic, and gender class divisions...anti-abortion legislation is nothing more than the modern equivalent of Sumptuary Laws.
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« Reply #53 on: August 12, 2007, 01:44:16 PM »

Something along those lines was said by the Pope of Rome, John Paul II, but that's hardly surprising. The quote is generally (even as used by the Pope) that a society is judged by how it treats its weakest member; anti-abortion advocates have interpreted this as the unborn. However, I believe it is a stretch of the definition of society to even include the unborn in this category. Those who are the truly weakest and most vulnerable members of society are the poor, the destitute, and those who have been rejected by the mores of society. These are exactly the people who anti-abortion laws harm, they don't hurt the aristocracy of America who, if they actually wanted to have an abortion could easily travel to another country or hire a doctor to do it in secret (as was often the case in the years before Roe v. Wade); they are an inconvenience to the Middle Classes, but one that can easily be overcome due to greater economic flexability than the poor; they are (like most restrictions of personal freedom) primarially targeted against the working and lower classes, they are the essence of barbarism, forcing at gunpoint pregnancy and childbirth on those who neither want it, nor can afford it.

Laws (or even social pressures) of this nature use minor mistakes in one's life against them, and dictate from on high that the person is not allowed to improve themselves, and must be condemned to a life of poverty. The net effect of the anti-abortion movement is to keep the poor poor and reinforce social, economic, and gender class divisions...anti-abortion legislation is nothing more than the modern equivalent of Sumptuary Laws. 

Well, the quote I think came from someone else earlier than Il Papa, but whatever - since I can't find it, I've got nothing to work with.

As far as saying it is a "stretch" to include the unborn as members of society, consider this: we have an entire field of medical study for them, therapies, educational material (what to do and not to do, music to play to them, how to help them learn your voice, etc.); a section of the American Industry that depends on them.  And unlike animals (which have for themselves a portion of the aforementioned American Industry) they are genetically human, a member of our genus and species.

I don't consider abortion an option for the poorer classes - contraception is less expensive, and most of the time does not involve the death of a fetus.

Of course, I don't know why you don't just advocate the elimination of the poor altogether - since you've ascribed to them a lack of self-control over their sexuality and reproduction, I don't know why you don't advocate the same for them that others do for street animals... "Help control the pet population - have your pets spayed or neutered."  GreekisBobBarker.
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« Reply #54 on: August 12, 2007, 03:50:46 PM »

Well, the quote I think came from someone else earlier than Il Papa, but whatever - since I can't find it, I've got nothing to work with.

Perhaps one of these:

'Let all bear in mind that a society is judged not so much by the standards attained by its more affluent and privileged members as by the quality of life which it is able to assure for its weakest members.'
-- H.E. Javier Perez de Cuellar

'The moral test of a government is how it treats those who are at the dawn of life, the children; those who are in the twilight of life, the aged; and those who are in the shadow of life, the sick and the needy, and the handicapped.'
-- Hubert Humphrey

Quote
As far as saying it is a "stretch" to include the unborn as members of society, consider this: we have an entire field of medical study for them, therapies, educational material (what to do and not to do, music to play to them, how to help them learn your voice, etc.); a section of the American Industry that depends on them.

All of which is a subsection of the field of woman's health.

Quote
And unlike animals (which have for themselves a portion of the aforementioned American Industry) they are genetically human, a member of our genus and species.

Of course, I have long defined humanity as more than a piece of dna, my preference is to define 'humanity' by intellectual capabilities and self-awareness (and the brain does not develop to this level until well into the second trimester, it's almost the third trimester until the necessary amount of brain matter is present, though substantial development of neural connections is still required at that point). By the definition of humanity you give every cell in the human body is 'human'.

Quote
I don't consider abortion an option for the poorer classes - contraception is less expensive, and most of the time does not involve the death of a fetus.

Contraception is an infinitely better course of action, you will get no arguments from me on that point. Many studies (including one I reference earlier, I believe in this thread) also demonstrate that it is the best means to decrease abortions; abortions result from unwanted pregnancies, it is of course better to ensure that these pregnancies never occur in the first place.

Quote
Of course, I don't know why you don't just advocate the elimination of the poor altogether - since you've ascribed to them a lack of self-control over their sexuality and reproduction, I don't know why you don't advocate the same for them that others do for street animals... "Help control the pet population - have your pets spayed or neutered."  GreekisBobBarker.

I do advocate the elimination of the poor altogether, not by some genocidal cleansing though, I advocate the elimination of the class by giving them every opportunity to rise above their social standing. One of these means is by providing them every option possible to not be burdened by unwanted pregnancies at a young age. Contraception should be strongly encouraged, but if it is not used or if it fails we should not condemn these people to a life of poverty and hardship (which is often the case if a young unmarried woman does have an unwanted child), we should give them options so that they can overcome this mistake and still have a chance at becomming productve members of society. Young women having unwanted children then relying on the state for support in the form of welfare benifits noone, least of all the young woman in question, but removing impediments from these people improving their lives and becoming productive members of society does not merely benifit them, it benifits all of us by improving our economy and reducing the need of the government to provide.

Are my suggestions going to help everyone? No, there are many other factors that bring about poverty, but if we can help rise a few out of poverty we will also have more resources to help those poor who are not so easily aided.
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« Reply #55 on: August 12, 2007, 04:33:39 PM »

Of course, I have long defined humanity as more than a piece of dna, my preference is to define 'humanity' by intellectual capabilities and self-awareness (and the brain does not develop to this level until well into the second trimester, it's almost the third trimester until the necessary amount of brain matter is present, though substantial development of neural connections is still required at that point). By the definition of humanity you give every cell in the human body is 'human'.

Contraception is an infinitely better course of action, you will get no arguments from me on that point. Many studies (including one I reference earlier, I believe in this thread) also demonstrate that it is the best means to decrease abortions; abortions result from unwanted pregnancies, it is of course better to ensure that these pregnancies never occur in the first place.

I do advocate the elimination of the poor altogether, not by some genocidal cleansing though, I advocate the elimination of the class by giving them every opportunity to rise above their social standing. One of these means is by providing them every option possible to not be burdened by unwanted pregnancies at a young age. Contraception should be strongly encouraged, but if it is not used or if it fails we should not condemn these people to a life of poverty and hardship (which is often the case if a young unmarried woman does have an unwanted child), we should give them options so that they can overcome this mistake and still have a chance at becomming productve members of society. Young women having unwanted children then relying on the state for support in the form of welfare benifits noone, least of all the young woman in question, but removing impediments from these people improving their lives and becoming productive members of society does not merely benifit them, it benifits all of us by improving our economy and reducing the need of the government to provide.

Are my suggestions going to help everyone? No, there are many other factors that bring about poverty, but if we can help rise a few out of poverty we will also have more resources to help those poor who are not so easily aided. 

Firstly, my definition of human does not extend to individual cells since I distinctly mentioned genus and species, which would necessarily exclude single-celled organisms in the specific case of Mammals.

Secondly, you still didn't address my over-arching concern with your characterization of the poor: that they fundamentally lack self-control.  It would seem to me that a certain amount of self-determination exists in all human life, but you seem to ascribe to the notion that pregnancies are like the common cold amongst the poor: it is impossible to avoid and they're not well equipped to handle it.  At least I am willing to leave them with a bit of human dignity (and American spirit) when I say they have the power to avoid the pregnancies without abortion; you on the other hand speak of them as if they were animals, and had no control over their urges to procreate and certainly no ability to use contraceptives while doing so.
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« Reply #56 on: August 12, 2007, 05:27:38 PM »

Firstly, my definition of human does not extend to individual cells since I distinctly mentioned genus and species, which would necessarily exclude single-celled organisms in the specific case of Mammals.

Well, I stand by my definition of human based on intellectual capabilities.

Quote
Secondly, you still didn't address my over-arching concern with your characterization of the poor: that they fundamentally lack self-control.  It would seem to me that a certain amount of self-determination exists in all human life, but you seem to ascribe to the notion that pregnancies are like the common cold amongst the poor: it is impossible to avoid and they're not well equipped to handle it.

It's unavoidable in all strata of society, but the upper and middle classes are better equipped to deal with it. They have the luxury of traveling abroad or hiring personal doctors to perform illegal abortions and even if they decide against an abortion, they have the economic means to absorb the costs of an unwanted child, the poor do not enjoy this luxury and for this reason I argue that anti-abortion laws are specifically targeted against the poor.

Quote
At least I am willing to leave them with a bit of human dignity (and American spirit) when I say they have the power to avoid the pregnancies without abortion; you on the other hand speak of them as if they were animals, and had no control over their urges to procreate and certainly no ability to use contraceptives while doing so.

That's not at all what I said, I said that contraceptives are not fool proof and if they fail there should be a course of action to fall back on. As far as being animals with no (or at least minimal) control over their urges to procreate, yes that is true of the poor as it is true of the rich, that is a constant across not only the homo sapiens species but across all biological organisms, if your solution is to eliminate sex you're fighting a loosing battle.

As far as the American Spirit goes, it is dependent on American Freedom, you cannot deny the latter and expect someone to flourish on account of the former.
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« Reply #57 on: August 12, 2007, 10:36:01 PM »

As far as being animals with no (or at least minimal) control over their urges to procreate, yes that is true of the poor as it is true of the rich, that is a constant across not only the homo sapiens species but across all biological organisms, if your solution is to eliminate sex you're fighting a loosing battle.
I believe our own Ozgeorge has stated many times that our battle against sexual passions is a battle against the strongest forces of our animal nature, but it's a battle Christ calls us to wage by the grace and power of His Holy Spirit.  We glorify many of our saints--St. Mary of Egypt is one of our greatest examples--precisely because they succeeded in acquiring mastery of their sexual urges and lived lives of great holiness before God.
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« Reply #58 on: August 12, 2007, 10:43:50 PM »

I believe our own Ozgeorge has stated many times that our battle against sexual passions is a battle against the strongest forces of our animal nature, but it's a battle Christ calls us to wage by the grace and power of His Holy Spirit.  We glorify many of our saints--St. Mary of Egypt is one of our greatest examples--precisely because they succeeded in acquiring mastery of their sexual urges and lived lives of great holiness before God.

And that's nice for a theoretical religious ideal and all, but we live in the real world and have to address real problems associated with it. Go ahead and uphold your personal ideal of sexual perfection, but don't use them as an excuse to ignore the actual issues that face society today.
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« Reply #59 on: August 12, 2007, 11:26:07 PM »

And that's nice for a theoretical religious ideal and all, but we live in the real world and have to address real problems associated with it. Go ahead and uphold your personal ideal of sexual perfection, but don't use them as an excuse to ignore the actual issues that face society today.
You miss my point, though.  I agree with the gist of the above statements that we can't afford to ignore real world concerns, but my point was to challenge your notion that humans cannot resist their animal urge to procreate.  Acting apart from the grace of God, resistance against these natural urges is indeed a losing battle.  Glory be to God, though, that He has not left us to battle these passions alone, for He has blessed us with His Holy Spirit.  Such God-inspired chastity is the most certain way to prevent unwanted pregnancies.  For the weak of faith, though--that includes virtually all of us--we need to do something to help such persons deal with the consequences of their weakness.  Fighting the consequences of sexual sin with even greater sin is not the proper avenue, however.
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« Reply #60 on: August 12, 2007, 11:49:56 PM »

honestly do not care what people think of me personally. Wink
You're inflated head says otherwise. I'm sure when little kids see you coming they say something like, "Look mommy, it's a parade!" If you truly don't care what people think about you, you'll simply ignore my comments here. But I doubt you can. In fact, I'm positive you can't.  Kiss

Until we can actually take care of those who are born into this world, we really have no business bringing more into the world. All restrictions on abortion do is bring into the world unwanted children that the parents are unable to support, they place greater strain on society and increase poverty. These fetus, if not aborted, would bring real poverty and hardship on the world. While I would certainly argue, for many reasons, that contraceptives are the prefered method of population control, abortion is an indispensable element that prevents the development of an entire segment of unwanted and uncared for people within the population, which would cause a greater strain on society as a whole. Until you can eliminate poverty and unwanted pregnancies, abortion is the lesser of two evils.
This is your answer to poverty? Well, I'm not surprised to hear this utilitarian pseudo-science coming from someone like you. What does surprise me is that the moderators let your anti-Christian, anti-life murderous views slip right on past them. If you are a Christian, you cannot support abortion. Period.   
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« Reply #61 on: August 12, 2007, 11:54:03 PM »

You're inflated head says otherwise. I'm sure when little kids see you coming they say something like, "Look mommy, it's a parade!" If you truly don't care what people think about you, you'll simply ignore my comments here. But I doubt you can. In fact, I'm positive you can't.  Kiss
...

This is your answer to poverty? Well, I'm not surprised to hear this utilitarian pseudo-science coming from someone like you. What does surprise me is that the moderators let your anti-Christian, anti-life murderous views slip right on past them. If you are a Christian, you cannot support abortion. Period.   

(bolded text mine)

No, we're aware of his views, as well as the ad hominem to start your post.

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« Reply #62 on: August 12, 2007, 11:58:40 PM »

(bolded text mine)

No, we're aware of his views, as well as the ad hominem to start your post.


Actually, Father, I don't consider it an ad hominem because I wasn't addressing his argument, but rather a statement he made about himself.


[edited name=Jibrail Almuhajir date=1186977687][/edited]
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« Reply #63 on: August 13, 2007, 12:20:32 AM »

This is your answer to poverty? Well, I'm not surprised to hear this utilitarian pseudo-science coming from someone like you. What does surprise me is that the moderators let your anti-Christian, anti-life murderous views slip right on past them. If you are a Christian, you cannot support abortion. Period.   

Not enough censorship for your tastes? One of the reasons I have long enjoyed posting on this board (yes, even back when I was a rather radical pro-life advocate like yourself...you know, there was a point when I refused to vote for a rather conservative pro-life republican candidate, even though I agreed with him on every other issue...people change, there's hope for all of us Wink) is the relative lack of censorship. I think I'm close enough to the edge that if that policy of a relatively good tolerance free speech were to change, I'd be banned straight away...at which point I would understand that I am both no longer welcome, but would also no longer with to contribute.

As for my being a Christian, that I am not a good Christian I have no doubt, but as to whether or not I am one, well that decision rests in the hands of two people and I'm afraid you arn't one of them: I can either openly abandon the faith or my Metropolitan can excommunicate me, to this date, as far as I know, neither has taken place...if you have a problem with that, I suggest that you take it up with my Metropolitan, Gerasimos of San Francisco, because I doubt you'll get too far with me Wink
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« Reply #64 on: August 13, 2007, 12:32:13 AM »

Not enough censorship for your tastes? One of the reasons I have long enjoyed posting on this board (yes, even back when I was a rather radical pro-life advocate like yourself...you know, there was a point when I refused to vote for a rather conservative pro-life republican candidate, even though I agreed with him on every other issue...people change, there's hope for all of us Wink) is the relative lack of censorship. I think I'm close enough to the edge that if that policy of a relatively good tolerance free speech were to change, I'd be banned straight away...at which point I would understand that I am both no longer welcome, but would also no longer with to contribute.

As for my being a Christian, that I am not a good Christian I have no doubt, but as to whether or not I am one, well that decision rests in the hands of two people and I'm afraid you arn't one of them: I can either openly abandon the faith or my Metropolitan can excommunicate me, to this date, as far as I know, neither has taken place...if you have a problem with that, I suggest that you take it up with my Metropolitan, Gerasimos of San Francisco, because I doubt you'll get too far with me Wink
Thank goodness we have to type out our comments here because y'all couldn't hear me for the foot in my mouth. What I meant to type out was 'If one is a Christian..." . Unfortunately, it came out looking like a judgement against you, GiC. I'm deeply sorry for that. I'm not moving from my position re: abortion, but I don't want to sound or come off as some sort of judge here. Heaven knows I wouldn't be able to pass my own test!  Shocked

 And I'm glad you saw my opening comments earlier as just good natured ribbing. Plus, I sorta lost that bet didn't I? Embarrassed  Wink 
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« Reply #65 on: August 13, 2007, 07:38:43 AM »

And I'm glad you saw my opening comments earlier as just good natured ribbing. Plus, I sorta lost that bet didn't I? Embarrassed  Wink 

Of course he's not going to bite the bait - for him, when someone decides to insult him or to resort to ad hominem, it means they're abandoning the pursuit to actually refute his claims, which means he wins the argument by default.

However, whether your comment is insult or ad hominem, it isn't a proper way to address someone in the Moderated Forums.

As for our non-censorship - we allow everyone to post their views, regardless of how heretical they may be, or how disgusting; once they're out there, its up to the community of posters to decide how to respond.  Oh, and that God person Wink .
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« Reply #66 on: August 13, 2007, 08:10:35 AM »

This IS the Free-For-All board after all. You do have warning as to what to expect or at least not be surprised at finding in this 'room'.
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« Reply #67 on: August 13, 2007, 10:44:25 AM »

Quote
Brothers and sisters,
 First, I apologize for my strong wording earlier. When we feel so strongly about an issue, sometimes we can get a little militant. At least I can. When I said 'lay down the Law of God', I didn't mean punish the girls and women who are having abortions. I meant that the Church, through the local priests, must must must address this issue more vocally albeit in a loving manner. Education is key, and not simply Christian education, but secular as well. An unplanned pregnancy can be devastating, but young women and their parents need to know that it's not the end of the world. Local churches need to step up and provide help, not judgements, for these young women.
 Listen, I know the psychological pain of having an abortion. I've seen first hand what it does to a young woman. Myself and ex-wife had one in 1996. It grieves me to no end to think of my little boy or girl who would've been 11 yrs old now. When my brother had his last child (a few years after our abortion and just before I became Orthodox), I thought my eyes would wash out for all of the crying I did. I almost literally lived in the Catholic church that was connected to the hospital. When I aborted (killed) my child, I killed a little piece of me as well. Brothers and sisters, I don't want to sound as if the women should be punished. Believe me, they're going through their own personal hell. When I say, "lay down the Law of God' I mean that more education needs to take place instead of judgements and turning blind eyes. The Law of God is more than commandments. The Law of God is more than admonishing us sinners. The Law of God is the medicine all of us must partake of in the spiritual hospital called the Orthodox Church.
 As Christians, we have a responsibility to respond to this heinous practice with tough love. In America, we do this with our voice and our vote. As Christians, we tell people that we love them but that we cannot tolerate this practice. You cannot tell someone that you love them and remain silent when millions of babies are being slaughtered. Personally, I would like it if everyone liked me and thought well of me. But as long as abortion is legal, I'm going to be vocal about it and I don't give a flip if someone likes me or not because of my anti-abortion views. As long as the majority of people look at abortion as an alternative, I wonder how effective we're being?

 If Romania truly has a 70% abortion rate, then the Church has failed Romania. Period. What good are the priests? What good is any of the clergy? It's been almost 20 years since the fall of communism and the abortion rate is 70% Did you know that abortion was illegal during Ceausescu's time? And now it's 70%? 70%!!!Time to shape up, you fat roly-poly priests riding around in your nice cars on the way home to your big houses! These are priests who administer the blessed body and blood of our savior and they do nothing? I heard a Romanian priest in a documentary say about the orphans running wild in the streets "Oh well. They choose to live like that." Excommunicate that man! Run him into the Black Sea! He's the shepherd of souls and his attitude is as complacent as it can be! Throw them out! Romania must rid herself of these do nothing, rotten, no good posers!!!! An adult, much less a priest, has no right to make such a callous statement. Seriously people, for a country that's well over 90% Orthodox, a 70% abortion rate speaks volumes about the clergy and it ain't good news. I don't mean to offend anyone, but we gotta wake up here. This cannot become the norm.

Quote
First, I'm dissapointed by your sarcasm. Calling me names does little, if anything, in bringing me to your side of the topic. Not to mention that it goes against being a Christian.

Secondly, I made an educated observation and not a judgement. I have heard first hand, from Romanians, how the priests are corrupt. No doubt, not all priests are, and I realize that the communists 're-education' techniques were quite successful. But that was almost twenty years ago. AND, even during communist times in Romania, abortion was illegal. NOW, given those facts, I wonder what your take on the situation is? In a country that boasts of a 90% Orthodox and yet has a 70% abortion rate, that to me seems a bit contradicting, does it not? No, I can't tell the 'priests' how to shepherd their flocks, if that's what you call what they're doing. But the bishops can. At least they're supposed to. But at a 70% rate, someone's failing. And it's looking like it's the Church. I will obey the priests and bishops as long as it is prudent to do so and providing that they're giving me proper Christian education and counseling. Islamic clerics get blind obedience. We're not bound to follow a fool.

Quote
Excellent summation, Augustin717. I failed to take into consideration what should have been apparent. Yet, I still can't help but ponder the effectiveness of Romania's priests given what I've heard other Romanians say about them. We have excellent examples in Frs Roman Braga, Georgiu Calciu, Cleopa Ilie, etc...but from what I've been told, they're the exception and not the norm. 70% is higher than in America, and abortion is legal here. If the people are only following what their parents do, that's not genuine. If America, of all places, is sending priests to Romania to teach them Orhtodoxy, well, what else can I say but that the Church has failed in Romania.


Jibrahil,

These are perhaps the best posts you have ever posted. I agree with you 100%. I think that a good portion of the church in Romania has been failing the people all these years. I also like how you pointed out how communism fell nearly 20 years ago, yet things are not getting better. It is the bishops job to ordain MEN OF GOD as priests, and instruct these men on how to lead the faithful. The Bishops must also reprimand the corrupt clergy. If the US has to send priests over to Romania to teach people how to be Orthodox it is a serious indictment of the Romanian church! The country needs more Elder Cleopas.

I will reiterate again, there is no excuse for a 70% abortion rate in a country that is 90% Orthodox. The clergy must step up and instruct the faithful. It is the job of the clergy to continually educate the people in the faith. I can't tell you how many Romanian Orthodox I have met who barely know anything at all about the faith.

Someone on here pointed out how in evangelicalism, the people are committed because they make a decision to follow Christ while the Orthodox are just born into it. This has become a sad fact in many of the Orthodox countries. I'm sure communism played a part in this; however, I know the evangelical churches remained passionate about the faith under communism and afterwards, so I still rest the blame at the feet of the clergy for not educating the faithful. People must make a decision to follow Jesus whether they were born into it or not. Even though the evangelicals are hetrodox, many of their teachings are Orthodox. Making a decision to follow Jesus and taking personal responsibility for it is Orthodox.
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« Reply #68 on: August 13, 2007, 10:49:11 AM »

So easy to look at faults in another, isn't it?
Especially in churches which survived atheistic regimes...
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« Reply #69 on: August 13, 2007, 10:54:12 AM »

Quote
So easy to look at faults in another, isn't it?
Especially in churches which survived atheistic regimes...

Your analysis is too simplistic.

Why is it other Christian churches under the same regimes managed to curve this behavior yet the Orthodox haven't? The early church managed to survive oppressive governments yet remain faithful.
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« Reply #70 on: August 13, 2007, 10:55:06 AM »

Why is it other Christian churches under the same regimes managed to curve this behavior yet the Orthodox haven't?

Er, proof?
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« Reply #71 on: August 13, 2007, 10:59:07 AM »

Your analysis is too simplistic.

Why is it other Christian churches under the same regimes managed to curve this behavior yet the Orthodox haven't? The early church managed to survive oppressive governments yet remain faithful.

You malign the Church. THAT is simplistic. The Church's stance on abortion is clear - settled canon law.
"Other Christian churches"? Like which? Where? You assume that all Romanians obtaining abortions are Orthodox? On the basis of a WHO report, or what?
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« Reply #72 on: August 13, 2007, 11:05:57 AM »

The early church managed to survive oppressive governments yet remain faithful. 

Speaking of simplistic...

Um, the Early Church went from being a small semi-public ministry to an underground Church; its a bit different to go from a large, national and established church to an underground Church.  The early church was accustomed to persecution from the get-go (i.e. Christ); but that had been out of the consciousness for over 1000 years when the Turks or Commies came in.
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« Reply #73 on: August 13, 2007, 11:42:26 AM »

Quote
Speaking of simplistic...

Um, the Early Church went from being a small semi-public ministry to an underground Church; its a bit different to go from a large, national and established church to an underground Church. 

True, it may be more difficult;however, there is still no excuse for these numbers.

Quote
The early church was accustomed to persecution from the get-go (i.e. Christ); but that had been out of the consciousness for over 1000 years when the Turks or Commies came in.

The church maintained a level of holiness after the turks. Most women weren't having abortions after the turks took over (amongst other things). The point I was making is that the church is to remain holy after any persecution. The clergy are responsible for educating the people and reinforcing the church's teaching. This is clearly not going on in Romania. How can you argue with the blatant facts?

Quote
You malign the Church. THAT is simplistic. The Church's stance on abortion is clear - settled canon law.
"Other Christian churches"? Like which? Where? You assume that all Romanians obtaining abortions are Orthodox? On the basis of a WHO report, or what?

I do not malign the Church my dear sir. I love the church and I pray for the Romanian church on a daily basis. I am making an observation of the simple facts. I never said that "all Romanians obtaining abortions are orthodox". I will say the majority of them are Orthodox. From the article that I posted earlier, we know that Romania has a 70% abortion rate. We also know that Romania is nearly 90% Orthodox. Just do the math and you will see the majority of the people having abortions are Orthodox. I know that there are some who are atheist, protestant, etc... who have them. That goes without saying;however, if the church is to heal society, it must educate the people over and over again on its teachings. Protestants do a good job at educating. The Orthodox need to educate the faithful as well. At this point in time there is something seriously wrong in Romania.

As far as Romanian evangelicals go, I have been around lots of them over the years. My wife is Romanian and was raised an evangelical. I am a former evangelical.  As doctrinally off as I know they are, I know abortion is not tolerated and constantly preached against. I know that there are protestants who have abortions, but I think there are by far less of them having abortions than Orthodox.

Jibrahil made a good point, Romania has been communist free for nearly 20 years, yet the abortion rate is through the roof. The church has not been silenced any more. There is no persecution of the church in Romania. The clergy must preach with an evangelistic spirit. They must explain the basics of the faith over and over again until the masses get it.

I will say it again. My wife is Romanian, and I love the Romanian culture. My children are half Romanian, and my grandchildren will always have Romanian blood in them. Romania is dear to my heart. I love the spiritual elders of Romania and the people. This is why I am so passionate about the current predicament amongst the faithful in Romania (one of many problems). I know if the clergy step up and teach the people how to live the Christian life, there will be a big difference in Romania.

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« Reply #74 on: August 13, 2007, 12:00:14 PM »

Good for you and yours, OB
As I said, the figures may be suspect. But...
If I assert that every new Orthodox birth there represents a success to the credit of the Church, that assertion would be as valid as yours debiting the Church for each abortion.
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« Reply #75 on: August 13, 2007, 12:16:27 PM »

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Good for you and yours, OB
As I said, the figures may be suspect. But...
If I assert that every new Orthodox birth there represents a success to the credit of the Church, that assertion would be as valid as yours debiting the Church for each abortion.

I think you misunderstand what I'm saying. I don't hold the church 100% responsible for each abortion. It is one factor amongst many. Poverty is another reason which someone else brought up. There are other reasons which I will not get into now. My issue with the church is that it could make a BIG difference if it were to step up (there are other issues which I think the Romanian church is not stepping up on, but that might be for another thread). There are other things which must happen as well politically and economically.

I think many on this board give the church a free pass and simply wont acknowledge the church can and should do more (especially the clergy) in Romania and other places. Can't we all agree more could be done?
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« Reply #76 on: August 13, 2007, 12:19:18 PM »

My issue with the church is that it could make a BIG difference if it were to step up (there are other issues which I think the Romanian church is not stepping up on, but that might be for another thread). There are other things which must happen as well politically and economically.

I think many on this board give the church a free pass and simply wont acknowledge the church can and should do more (especially the clergy) in Romania and other places. Can't we all agree more could be done? 

Amen.  I don't want to lay too much blame for the current situation at the Church's feet (which is probably where I was misinterpreting your intentions), but they could do more and better work (hence, why IOCC and OCMC send people and $$ to the country).  Their salvation depends on it.
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« Reply #77 on: August 13, 2007, 01:36:24 PM »

I can either openly abandon the faith or my Metropolitan can excommunicate me, to this date, as far as I know, neither has taken place...if you have a problem with that, I suggest that you take it up with my Metropolitan, Gerasimos of San Francisco, because I doubt you'll get too far with me Wink
Practically speaking, I believe you've actually excommunicated yourself by not attending church and not Communing.  It shouldn't really matter if +GERASIMOS doesn't actually do it formally.
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« Reply #78 on: August 13, 2007, 05:44:24 PM »

However,
Once you get to know the Romanian Church first-hand-as I do, having spent most of my life there-and not merely from figures, things become more nuanced and the predictions less alarming.
And abortions, btw , happened even before Communism, with the methods available back then.
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« Reply #79 on: August 13, 2007, 08:14:36 PM »

Practically speaking, I believe you've actually excommunicated yourself by not attending church and not Communing.  It shouldn't really matter if +GERASIMOS doesn't actually do it formally.

First of all, we don't have latae sententiae excommunications in the Orthodox Church, we only have the formal ferendae sententiae excommunications. Secondly, I doubt the argument would hold up in a canonical court, the relevant canon is as follows (From VI 80):

'In case any Bishop, or Presbyter, or Deacon, or anyone else on the list of the Clergy, or any layman, without any graver necessity or any particular difficulty compelling him to absent himself from his own church for a very long time, fails to attend church on Sundays for three consecutive weeks, while living in the city, if he be a Cleric, let him be deposed from office; but if he be a layman, let him be removed from Communion.'

Now there are two historic interpretations of this, one that it refers only to those who live in 'the city' of Constatinople, under this interpretation it doesn't apply to me. The other interpretation is that it applies to one in their home city, whatever that city may be, well in my home city the liturgy has not been celebrated for three consecutive weeks by a priest commissioned to do so by my Metropolitans, which would make the canon moot in this instance. So if you believe you have a case, by all means, take it up with my Metropolitan; though I suspect that I'd prevail, were it to, by some small chance, be brought before a canonical tribunal.
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« Reply #80 on: August 13, 2007, 09:44:16 PM »

First of all, we don't have latae sententiae excommunications in the Orthodox Church, we only have the formal ferendae sententiae excommunications. Secondly, I doubt the argument would hold up in a canonical court, the relevant canon is as follows (From VI 80):

'In case any Bishop, or Presbyter, or Deacon, or anyone else on the list of the Clergy, or any layman, without any graver necessity or any particular difficulty compelling him to absent himself from his own church for a very long time, fails to attend church on Sundays for three consecutive weeks, while living in the city, if he be a Cleric, let him be deposed from office; but if he be a layman, let him be removed from Communion.'

Now there are two historic interpretations of this, one that it refers only to those who live in 'the city' of Constatinople, under this interpretation it doesn't apply to me. The other interpretation is that it applies to one in their home city, whatever that city may be, well in my home city the liturgy has not been celebrated for three consecutive weeks by a priest commissioned to do so by my Metropolitans, which would make the canon moot in this instance. So if you believe you have a case, by all means, take it up with my Metropolitan; though I suspect that I'd prevail, were it to, by some small chance, be brought before a canonical tribunal.

:yawn:
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« Reply #81 on: August 13, 2007, 10:40:55 PM »

:yawn:

You're the one who decided to engage in a canonical argument with me Wink
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« Reply #82 on: August 13, 2007, 10:45:27 PM »

You're the one who decided to engage in a canonical argument with me Wink

Well, I enjoyed the lesson...
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« Reply #83 on: August 13, 2007, 11:36:12 PM »

You're the one who decided to engage in a canonical argument with me Wink

Actually, I didn't...but as always, it didn't stop you from doing it.
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« Reply #84 on: August 14, 2007, 12:56:42 AM »

First of all, we don't have latae sententiae excommunications in the Orthodox Church, we only have the formal ferendae sententiae excommunications. Secondly, I doubt the argument would hold up in a canonical court, the relevant canon is as follows (From VI 80):

'In case any Bishop, or Presbyter, or Deacon, or anyone else on the list of the Clergy, or any layman, without any graver necessity or any particular difficulty compelling him to absent himself from his own church for a very long time, fails to attend church on Sundays for three consecutive weeks, while living in the city, if he be a Cleric, let him be deposed from office; but if he be a layman, let him be removed from Communion.'

Now there are two historic interpretations of this, one that it refers only to those who live in 'the city' of Constatinople, under this interpretation it doesn't apply to me. The other interpretation is that it applies to one in their home city, whatever that city may be, well in my home city the liturgy has not been celebrated for three consecutive weeks by a priest commissioned to do so by my Metropolitans, which would make the canon moot in this instance. So if you believe you have a case, by all means, take it up with my Metropolitan; though I suspect that I'd prevail, were it to, by some small chance, be brought before a canonical tribunal.

Ha ha ha.  You went for the broad-scope meaning while missing what he literally said: if you've been skipping liturgy, it means you've been missing communion, which means you've separated yourself from the Church by excommunication.  Lol.
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« Reply #85 on: August 14, 2007, 03:56:31 AM »

^^LOL....Well if he just makes it to a few greek festivels a year, that should make him Orthodox enough.. Grin
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Αριστοκλής
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« Reply #86 on: August 14, 2007, 08:18:41 AM »

"greek festivals"? In Pittsburgh it's the season of the holupkis versus the gyros...  Wink
« Last Edit: August 14, 2007, 08:19:03 AM by Αριστοκλής » Logged

"Religion is a neurobiological illness and Orthodoxy is its cure." - Fr. John S. Romanides
Elisha
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« Reply #87 on: August 14, 2007, 11:41:42 AM »

^^LOL....Well if he just makes it to a few greek festivels a year, that should make him Orthodox enough.. Grin

He's going to have to get in the car and DRIVE though...he's at least 150 miles from the nearest one.
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GiC
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« Reply #88 on: August 14, 2007, 10:36:56 PM »

Ha ha ha.  You went for the broad-scope meaning while missing what he literally said: if you've been skipping liturgy, it means you've been missing communion, which means you've separated yourself from the Church by excommunication.  Lol.

Actually, the literal meaning is to make priests, who are being paid by the Church, go to Church...the laity were thrown in as an after thought for the case of consistancy. Most the ancient commentaries focus on the importance of the Bishop making it at least once every three weeks.

Plus, would you expect anything less from a student of Dr. Patsavos?
« Last Edit: August 14, 2007, 10:53:28 PM by greekischristian » Logged

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GabrieltheCelt
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Chasin' down a Hoodoo...


« Reply #89 on: August 15, 2007, 05:58:23 PM »

However,
Once you get to know the Romanian Church first-hand-as I do, having spent most of my life there-and not merely from figures, things become more nuanced and the predictions less alarming.
And abortions, btw , happened even before Communism, with the methods available back then.
Yes, I'm sure abortions did take place before Communism. Yet, with Communism 20yrs gone, there's more freedoms in Romania. Freedom to go against one's religion to be sure, but also more freedom for the Church to teach openly.
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