Author Topic: when is it alright for a Bishop to lie?  (Read 1480 times)

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Offline question

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when is it alright for a Bishop to lie?
« on: March 30, 2010, 12:10:00 PM »
We were with a certain bishop and he stayed over at our home,and he lied to the dmv to get cheaper insurance saying that he was living with us(mind you it was only a week and he was visiting). He then told the dmv and police that we were  cousins so that he wouldnt get in trouble. What would you do if you were in this situation?

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Re: when is it alright for a Bishop to lie?
« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2010, 01:19:35 PM »

That's funny.  Just this past weekend our bishop, His Grace Bishop Daniel, gave a sermon on how important it is for parents to set a good example for their children.  That kids are like sponges and they will emulate what they see at home.

He expressly mentioned the fact that many people lie to the policeman who pulls them over in order to get out of a ticket....stating they weren't speeding, they didn't see the light, they are in a hurry, etc.  He asked what kind of an example was that setting for the children sitting in the back seat of that car?  Are we teaching them that it is okay to lie in order to get out of a tight situation?  He concluded the statement by teaching us to take the blame for our actions and not try to wriggle out of them.  Life will have it's hard times and difficulties and we need to go through those times with integrity and honesty. 


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Re: when is it alright for a Bishop to lie?
« Reply #2 on: March 30, 2010, 03:37:52 PM »
In some cases it's ok to lie. If your lie saves a life, for example, it's better to lie than to let someone die. However, getting cheaper insurance wouldn't make many lists of when it's ok to lie, I don't think.  if I were you, I'd just forget about it, or if you know him well enough that he's staying at your house, maybe tell him that you aren't ok with him doing what he did. I don't think it has to go further than that, though.
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Offline Tzimis

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Re: when is it alright for a Bishop to lie?
« Reply #3 on: March 30, 2010, 03:50:09 PM »
I don't know because our bishops are using limos these days. :laugh: :angel:  All Joking aside. Bishops are people too and I'm sure some of them need help finding cheaper insurance. I personally would have helped him out. Legalism as I see it is actually a worse flaw. Sorry. ::)
Excellence of character, then, is a state concerned with choice, lying in a mean relative to us, this being determined by reason and in the way in which the man of practical wisdom would determine it. Now it is a mean between two vices, that which depends on excess and that which depends on defect.

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Re: when is it alright for a Bishop to lie?
« Reply #4 on: March 30, 2010, 03:55:49 PM »
I don't feel comfortable saying whether it's okay or not. I don't feel too bad about pulling a fib on insurance companies, considering all the misery they cause people. Did he discuss this with you before he did it?
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Re: when is it alright for a Bishop to lie?
« Reply #5 on: March 30, 2010, 03:59:48 PM »
I think it's never "OK" to lie. When your lie is the only thing that can save a life, of course you should lie, but it still is not something you can be happy about or proud of. And lying to a government office to get a cheaper deal for himself is just... ahem... what's the word, disgusting?
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Re: when is it alright for a Bishop to lie?
« Reply #6 on: March 30, 2010, 04:11:22 PM »
Given that this issue could quickly turn in to a discussion of the identity of this bishop, I'd like to request that posters not speculate or name names. It would not be a good thing to do, I think. I also don't want the site to become liable :)

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« Last Edit: March 30, 2010, 04:11:46 PM by Fr. Anastasios »
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Past posts reflect stages of my life before my baptism and may not be accurate expositions of Orthodox teaching. Also, I served as an Orthodox priest from 2008-2013, before resigning.

Offline Tzimis

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Re: when is it alright for a Bishop to lie?
« Reply #7 on: March 30, 2010, 04:17:39 PM »
Sometimes we do things out of love for others even though it goes against our fundamentalist society. Just like when children ask for candy we go against our better judgment and give in to them anyway out of love and because they are the elect in our lives. But by no means break the law. Like your bishop, He didn't really lie because he was living with you at the time. Maybe he isn't now but thats an issue of updating his paperwork . Has absolutely nothing to do with you . You see. Legalism works both ways. ;)
Excellence of character, then, is a state concerned with choice, lying in a mean relative to us, this being determined by reason and in the way in which the man of practical wisdom would determine it. Now it is a mean between two vices, that which depends on excess and that which depends on defect.

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Re: when is it alright for a Bishop to lie?
« Reply #8 on: March 30, 2010, 04:25:57 PM »
I don't feel comfortable saying whether it's okay or not. I don't feel too bad about pulling a fib on insurance companies, considering all the misery they cause people. Did he discuss this with you before he did it?
Regardless of the misery insurance companies may cause us, this does not justify lying to them just to get a cheaper rate.  I agree with Heorhij that this sinful business practice is disgusting.  To me, it's nothing short of fraud.
« Last Edit: March 30, 2010, 04:26:45 PM by PeterTheAleut »
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Offline Tzimis

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Re: when is it alright for a Bishop to lie?
« Reply #9 on: March 30, 2010, 05:23:37 PM »
I don't feel comfortable saying whether it's okay or not. I don't feel too bad about pulling a fib on insurance companies, considering all the misery they cause people. Did he discuss this with you before he did it?
Regardless of the misery insurance companies may cause us, this does not justify lying to them just to get a cheaper rate.  I agree with Heorhij that this sinful business practice is disgusting.  To me, it's nothing short of fraud.
Let's not call a bishop a sinner now. PTA Lets say this bishop travels to his parishioners houses on a regular basis and doesn't have a place that he can call a permanent home. Would you criticize him for seeking the best deal on insurance that he can manage. I for one would call him a good stewart of the money that he has saved and I would light a candle for him in church.
Excellence of character, then, is a state concerned with choice, lying in a mean relative to us, this being determined by reason and in the way in which the man of practical wisdom would determine it. Now it is a mean between two vices, that which depends on excess and that which depends on defect.

Offline ytterbiumanalyst

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Re: when is it alright for a Bishop to lie?
« Reply #10 on: March 30, 2010, 08:27:55 PM »
I don't feel comfortable saying whether it's okay or not. I don't feel too bad about pulling a fib on insurance companies, considering all the misery they cause people. Did he discuss this with you before he did it?
Regardless of the misery insurance companies may cause us, this does not justify lying to them just to get a cheaper rate.  I agree with Heorhij that this sinful business practice is disgusting.  To me, it's nothing short of fraud.
Let's not call a bishop a sinner now. PTA Lets say this bishop travels to his parishioners houses on a regular basis and doesn't have a place that he can call a permanent home. Would you criticize him for seeking the best deal on insurance that he can manage. I for one would call him a good stewart of the money that he has saved and I would light a candle for him in church.
Good point. We don't know the details here. All we know is what some anonymous person has written on an Internet forum. Let's not pretend we know anything about the situation, and continue simply to pray for all clergy.
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Offline Rafa999

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Re: when is it alright for a Bishop to lie?
« Reply #11 on: March 30, 2010, 08:32:57 PM »
If he can't afford the insurance and is a sick man...maybe the preservation of life command (which overrides all others) allows him to fib? Just a thought.
« Last Edit: March 30, 2010, 08:33:26 PM by Rafa999 »
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Re: when is it alright for a Bishop to lie?
« Reply #12 on: March 30, 2010, 08:50:18 PM »
I don't feel comfortable saying whether it's okay or not. I don't feel too bad about pulling a fib on insurance companies, considering all the misery they cause people. Did he discuss this with you before he did it?
Regardless of the misery insurance companies may cause us, this does not justify lying to them just to get a cheaper rate.  I agree with Heorhij that this sinful business practice is disgusting.  To me, it's nothing short of fraud.
Let's not call a bishop a sinner now. PTA Lets say this bishop travels to his parishioners houses on a regular basis and doesn't have a place that he can call a permanent home. Would you criticize him for seeking the best deal on insurance that he can manage. I for one would call him a good stewart of the money that he has saved and I would light a candle for him in church.
I don't presume to know the man or his deeds, so I'm not passing judgment on him.  All I know is what was posted on this thread, and to that alone am I replying.  The practice so described in the OP is what I call sin.  I'm not calling anyone in particular a sinner for the specific scenario described in the OP, since I don't even know if it really happened.

Would you criticize him for seeking the best deal on insurance that he can manage. I for one would call him a good stewart of the money that he has saved and I would light a candle for him in church.
In the light of the disclaimer I submitted above, I offer the following general critique of this practice of which you speak:  I have no problem with someone seeking the best deal they can find on insurance, as long as they do so in a way that is ethical and legal.  However, I do not see such a good and frugal end justifying the employment of such unethical and criminal means as fraud to accomplish that goal.  To me, lying in order to gain a cheaper rate on one's insurance is NOT good stewardship.

Now, do I know that anyone is doing this?  No, I do not, so I cannot apply this to a particular situation, nor am I equipped to judge another person, much less a bishop.  All I'm doing here is laying down general principles of ethics and morality in response to what I believe to be demonic rationalizations employed to justify conduct that, if engaged in, would be nothing short of sinful and illegal.  That is all.
« Last Edit: March 30, 2010, 09:14:01 PM by PeterTheAleut »
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Re: when is it alright for a Bishop to lie?
« Reply #13 on: March 30, 2010, 09:26:14 PM »
If he can't afford the insurance and is a sick man...maybe the preservation of life command (which overrides all others) allows him to fib? Just a thought.
Auto insurance.
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Re: when is it alright for a Bishop to lie?
« Reply #14 on: March 30, 2010, 09:51:17 PM »
If he can't afford the insurance and is a sick man...maybe the preservation of life command (which overrides all others) allows him to fib? Just a thought.
Auto insurance.

OH. erm...dunno then.
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Re: when is it alright for a Bishop to lie?
« Reply #15 on: March 31, 2010, 12:43:03 AM »
Thats a good question. I would say when life is at stake. Just my two cents
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Offline GabrieltheCelt

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Re: when is it alright for a Bishop to lie?
« Reply #16 on: March 31, 2010, 12:56:06 AM »
I found this thread about Lies vs. Deceptions.  Y'all may enjoy it.  You may even wanna contribute.   :)

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,11709.0.html
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Re: when is it alright for a Bishop to lie?
« Reply #17 on: March 31, 2010, 02:41:41 AM »
Something seems 'fishy' about the OP's claim. Since when does a Bishop have the time to hang out somebody's house for a week? Most Bishops are pretty busy and they are usually in and out of a place within a day or two. The majority of Bishops also make a good chunk of change...I just don't see this happening, sorry!
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Offline Alveus Lacuna

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Re: when is it alright for a Bishop to lie?
« Reply #18 on: March 31, 2010, 02:43:56 AM »
Something seems 'fishy' about the OP's claim.

That is not possible, as fish is not allowed during this part of Holy Week.

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Re: when is it alright for a Bishop to lie?
« Reply #19 on: March 31, 2010, 02:55:03 AM »
 :D ;D ;) :laugh: Very funny Alveus
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Re: when is it alright for a Bishop to lie?
« Reply #20 on: March 31, 2010, 09:07:19 AM »

Now, do I know that anyone is doing this?  No, I do not, so I cannot apply this to a particular situation, nor am I equipped to judge another person, much less a bishop.  All I'm doing here is laying down general principles of ethics and morality in response to what I believe to be demonic rationalizations employed to justify conduct that, if engaged in, would be nothing short of sinful and illegal.  That is all.

The OP gave just enough information to allow the mind to run away. We as good Christians shouldn't let a vague description automatically railroad into one of our bishops falling from grace. I think it's us who have fallen into sin by scandalizing a few words and gossiping about a bishop.
Excellence of character, then, is a state concerned with choice, lying in a mean relative to us, this being determined by reason and in the way in which the man of practical wisdom would determine it. Now it is a mean between two vices, that which depends on excess and that which depends on defect.

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Re: when is it alright for a Bishop to lie?
« Reply #21 on: March 31, 2010, 10:03:04 AM »
With this being the closing days of Holy Week, I am locking this thread as it demonstrably engenders gossip and uncharitable thoughts about others in this time when we should be focusing on destroying such inclinations within ourselves.  If you have a problem with this, PM Fr. Chris.
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