Natural Law , Patriarch Kirill , Russian Orthodox Church , Same-Sex ‘Marriage’ , Transgenderism

Summary of article:  Qualifying his remarks, the Orthodox hierarch insisted that hatred and personal judgment have no place in the Christian’s life. “We don’t condemn people who have different sexual preferences,” he clarified. “That’s on their conscience and it’s their business, but they shouldn’t be discriminated against or punished.”

But the Patriarch drew the line at societal affirmation of homosexuality. “However, under no circumstances should this be accepted as a social norm, no different from the social norm that stems from our moral nature, meaning marriage between a man and wife who create a family and have children.”

Full Article:

Russian Patriarch: LGBT agenda poses ‘significant threat for the existence of the human race’ – Fr. Mark Hodges

 MOSCOW, Russia, November 23, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) — The head of the world’s largest Orthodox Church says anti-discrimination laws supporting homosexuality and transgenderism are “at odds with the moral nature of human beings.”

Patriarch Kirill, leader of more than 200 million Russian Orthodox Christians, gave an exclusive interview to Russia Today (RT), the English-language news channel that provides a Russian view on global news.
The Christian leader said Western same-sex “marriage” laws and transgender “anti-discrimination” laws are unprecedented and unnatural.  
“What’s happening in the Western countries is that, for the first time in human history, legislation is at odds with the moral nature of human beings,” he said.
“What is good and evil?” He rhetorically asked, expressing deep concern that good and evil are being perverted. “The Church can never approve of this. We say that the Church can never redefine good and evil, sin and righteousness.”
The namesake of Patriarch Kirill, St. Cyril of Alexandria (fifth century), warned that if we deem “that which is evil fit for commendation and applause, the prophet’s words will apply to us, ‘Woe to those who call evil ‘good’ and good ‘evil,’ who put darkness for light, and light for darkness.'” (Isaiah 5:20)
Kirill explained that our common moral nature was created by God and is the basis of good laws. “Legislation defines moral values in legal terms, telling us what’s good and what’s bad,” he said. “We know that stealing is bad and helping people is good, and laws define what stealing is and what the suitable punishment for it is.”
However, his All-Holiness explained, laws are now being made that go against our nature. “Now, for the first time in human history, the law allows something that doesn’t correspond to our moral nature,” he said.  
In fact, laws for same-sex “marriage” and other laws, such as those affirming transgenderism, are actually directly opposed to our moral nature. “The law contradicts it,” Kirill said.
He compared LGBTQ legislation with apartheid laws in South Africa and anti-Semite laws in Nazi Germany, and concluded that in their innermost hearts, people know such laws are wrong. “They knew it wasn’t right; it was artificial; it was part of some ideology and not in sync with their moral nature.”
The Patriarch’s opinion confirms the ancient wisdom of the founder of monasticism, St. Anthony the Great (251-356 AD), who predicted, “A time is coming when men will go mad, and when they see someone who is not mad, they will attack him, saying, ‘You are mad; you are not like us.'”
Qualifying his remarks, the Orthodox hierarch insisted that hatred and personal judgment have no place in the Christian’s life. “We don’t condemn people who have different sexual preferences,” he clarified. “That’s on their conscience and it’s their business, but they shouldn’t be discriminated against or punished.”

But the Patriarch drew the line at societal affirmation of homosexuality. “However, under no circumstances should this be accepted as a social norm, no different from the social norm that stems from our moral nature, meaning marriage between a man and wife who create a family and have children.”
Kirill solemnly warned that Western laws legalizing same-sex “marriage” and transgenderism will destroy humanity. “This new trend poses a significant threat for the existence of the human race,” he said.
He added that it is the Church’s responsibility to be the conscience of the nation, but governmental leaders are actively suppressing the Church’s voice. “The Church has to address this and say it’s a bad thing, but we’ve seen that authorities in some countries have been trying to silence clergymen,” Kirill said.  
The Christian leader pointed out the irony. “In the countries that declare their commitment to freedom of speech, you can get punished for expressing your opinion.”
“One Protestant pastor went to jail for calling same-sex ‘marriage’ a sin in his sermon. Again, this is very reminiscent of what was happening under Soviet totalitarianism.”

“That’s a dangerous trend, and I hope it will fade and the natural order of things will prevail,” he said, adding that he fears for humanity’s future. “I don’t even want to think about what might happen to us otherwise.”


Recipe of the week: Homeade Chicken Broth using the Carcass

My husband is home sick and it’s November. Perfect time for chicken noodle soup! I had a carcass in the freezer from a whole chicken we bought a few weeks ago from the coop for dinner. It still has some meet in it so I defrosted it, picked the meat out, and put together the broth in the crockpot. Around 5pm tonight I’ll strain the broth add in the chicken some carrots and egg noodles! And serve it with some crusty bread! Yummy!

A Solution: Carbon Tax

One of the solutions outlined in “Before the Flood” is to switch from a payroll to carbon tax. We currently do not have a carbon tax set up in the US. It’d be great if we did. The funds from the carbon tax could go right back into clean energy, renewable resources and whatever else we’d need to clean up and protect the environment. 
Leonardo DiCaprio posted this CarboTax link. You can take the quiz and find out what your monthly carbon tax would be. We didn’t donate yet because it goes to a general sea and wildlife find and would like to see this as part of our government policy as a mandate in all Americans. 
Interestingly our tax was I my $17.66 a month. Very reasonable and affordable we thought! Average American carbon score is 10.0. Ours was 9.2. A big reason for that is because we don’t eat much beef, and we live in a small home less than 1000 sq. feet. But our score did go up 2 whole points after putting our 3 air travel flights last year! Wow! Something to really think about!! I think I’ll redo the quiz to see the difference in monthly amount with out the air travel. 
And that folks is how we should be thinking about our carbon use on the environment. If there’s a tax it’ll drive our use and we’ll be motivated to choose items with less of a carbon footprint. Then producers will be motivated to produce items using clean and renewable energy. This could be a really great solution! Spread the word and let’s let our leaders know about it! And that we support it!

Being Christian does not mean…

Being Christian does not mean your perfect. Jesus himself walked with sinners leading them to repentance. It’s often thought that if you are Christian you need to be or should be perfect and if your not your a hypocrite and that’s why many leave the Church. Well, that’s the lies satan wants you to believe so that you flee from the Church, don’t you see that my friends? Someone like Melanie Trump we want at Church more than anyone for example because Church is a spiritual hospital for those wounded on the battlefield of life. We go to Church to be healed not because we are already perfect. Thoxa to Theo! Glory to God!

Care for the poor

Hello! My family and I were at family camp this weekend. Family camp is faith retreat for families and singles led by St. Mary’s Orthodox Church. It was a fun filled weekend of fellowship, activities, beautiful weather, lectures, and Liturgy. 

What did we learn? Well, the boys learned that they love fellowship which includes faith music by the campfire! What better way than that to live out God’s love.

What did my husband and I learn at camp? That this is what the prophets spoke of; living in God’s love. The prophets that came before Jesus, spoke of many things, and that was one of them. But there were many more. The topic of the lecture at camp was given by Dr. Lotti and it was on “The Prophets Speak to Us.” 

He said that “the Old Testament is not for judgement and the new for grace, but both are relevant to today, and that they both speak God’s word, the old through prophets and the new through Jesus our Savior and the last prophet.” 

There is much more to unpack there but I will leave that for another time because I’d like to get to a point, a gift we were given at the retreat. There were four things Dr. Lotto spoke of that the Bible teaches us both through the prophets and Jesus. They are:

1. I am the Lord your God, and you shall have no other God’s before me.

2. Repent and love your neighbor.

3. Care for the poor.

4. The Lord is the Lord of history.

Again here there is much to say and unpack in these four topics, but I’ll leave this too for another time to get to my point and the gift my husband and I were given.

You see when Dr. Lotti spoke of giving one pair of shoes when you have two – a lesson given to us from the prophets and Jesus; what did I think of? 

I thought, “I just gave a desk to my grandma because we had three.” 

Then he said give alms to the poor – again another lesson given to us by the prophets and Jesus, I thought to myself, “we give money to Africa twice a year.” 

So, what’s wrong with thinking of what I do in comparison to what God’s asking of me? Well, the answer is complex yet simple just as most lessons from God are, but I’ll do my best to explain with the help of the great St. Basil. 

You see when we see a person without shoes or see poverty we are to, “feel God’s judgement” as Dr. Lotti pointed out – which has been given to us from the prophets and Jesus as yet another lesson – there are so many good ones! So what does that mean? Well, it means this; “You with a second coat in your closet, it does not belong to you. You have stolen it from the poor man who is shivering in the cold.” 
Another way to say this is when you see a person with shoes or a coat or some need, thank them for yourself having their shoes; to give to them. You see they are not our shoes to begin with and this is more thoroughly explained by St. Basil the Great below:

The harshest form of covetousness is not even to give things perishable to those who need them. “But whom do I treat unjustly,” you say, “by keeping what is my own?” Tell me, what is your own? What did you bring into this life? From where did you receive it? It is as if someone were to take the first seat in the theater, then bar everyone else from attending, so that one person alone enjoys what is offered for the benefit of all-this is what the rich do. They first take possession of the common property, and then they keep it as their own because they were the first to take it. But if every man took only what sufficed for his own need, and left the rest to the needy, no one would be rich, no one would be poor, no one would be in need.

Did you not fall naked from the womb? Will you not go back naked to the earth? Where is your present property from? If you think that it came to you by itself, you don’t believe in God, you don’t acknowledge the creator and you are not thankful to Him who gave it to you. But if you agree and confess that you have it from God, tell us the reason why He gave it to you.

Is God unjust, dividing unequally the goods of this life? Why are you rich, while the other is poor? Isn’t it, if for no other reason, so that you can gain a reward for your kindness and faithful stewardship, and for him to be honored with the great virtue of patience? But you, having gathered everything inside the empty bosom of avarice, do you think that you wrong no one, while you rob so many people?

Who is the greedy person? It’s him, who doesn’t content himself with what he has. And who the thief? He who steals what belongs to others. And you think that you are not greedy, and that you do not rob others? What had been granted to you so that you might care for others, you claim for yourself.

He who strips a man of his clothes is to be called a thief. Is not he who, when he is able, fails to clothe the naked, worthy of no other title? The bread which you do not use is the bread of the hungry; the garment hanging in your wardrobe is the garment of him who is naked; the shoes that you do not wear are the shoes of the one who is barefoot; the money that you keep locked away is the money of the poor; the acts of charity that you do not perform are so many injustices that you commit. ———————–

So, what was the gift my husband and I received?  Growth in faith! We were able to move deeper into understand of how we are to care for the poor, by learning about how the prophets spoke about caring for the poor, which is ultimately from God.
Jesus Christ, the word of God, also spoke the same things on how to care for the poor. 

So, is it good for us to give our extra clothes and tithed money to the poor? Yes! 

And so when we were giving before this realization were we doing wrong? No, but it wasn’t giving freely and it wasn’t giving without pride attached to it. 

Because when we heard “give to the poor” we weren’t feeling God’s judgement. We were justifying what or how much we do, boasting in our heads, checking it off a list of what we do well, saying “we do that”, and comparing ourselves to others in a sense. 

So, instead we are called to look at who has given us all we have and to see that what we have is not ours but the person’s who is in need. 

We speak of poor people. But their just regular people who happen to be poor. It could happen to any one of us at any time. So also when God calls us to, He may ask us to give up what He has given us, to instead give to someone in need. 

And, are we ready to give? 

Are we ready to give to those in need what we have and what is already theirs? 

Are we ready to see our second pair of shoes as already belonging to someone else? And thank them for the opportunity to give them their shoes back.