Monday, September 9, 2013


The Church is Our Homeland, and Our Allegiance 
must be Found in the Teachings of Christ

I am an American convert to Orthodoxy, and the abbot of a monastery within the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia, and I believe I am typical of the American Orthodox scene. We are Orthodox Christians of many nationalities, who have embraced the United States as our beloved home. I am also a thinking American who is concerned about the direction my country has taken regarding Syria, Egypt, and the whole of the Middle East.

As Orthodox Christians we are neither Americans of Norwegian blood (me), nor Americans of Russian blood. We are first and foremost sons and daughters of the Church, and true brothers and sisters, sharing a common nationality that is Orthodoxy. It is therefore my expectation that I will stand in solidarity with Orthodox Christians throughout the Middle East, and that we Orthodox Christians, be we Russian, Egyptian, Copt, Ethiopian, Greek, or Norwegian, will stand together for what is right before God.

As Christians we can not look the other way when we see our leaders readying for war, even though our country is not under attack. Our government continues to cultivate endless enemies as we arrogantly prance around the world scene, acting like American is the official police force of the world. Our government ignores the constitutionally based rule by the people, while declaring war on a country that is headed by a dictator no different than countless other dictators we HAVE supported.

We are now prepared to bomb a country for allegedly using chemical weapons against their own people (never mind this was a region already under the control of the government), yet we supported the dictator in Iraq during the time he used chemical weapons against Iran, and we did nothing, said nothing. From a Christian point of view, this is the height of hypocrisy.

Our government clearly cares nothing for the Syrian Christians, who face certain genocide should the Rebels take Syria. The Obama Administration ignores the burning of over one hundred Coptic churches and monasteries in Egypt, all the while trying to convince the military government of Egypt to reconcile with the very radical Muslims the people drove out. We claim we want Egypt to become a democratic government, all the while helping the rebels to turn Syria into an Islamic State.

Where is Christ in all this? As American Christians, we can not abide having our names immorally ascribed on a bomb meant for a Syrian city. Nor can we abide by our government fighting a war on behalf of Saudi Arabia and Turkey. Just as the Lutheran pastor in Nazi Germany could not remain a follower of Christ, and remain silent about the extermination of the Jews, so is it impossible for me, an Orthodox priest, to remain with Christ, and remain silent about the plight of Christians throughout the Middle East.

With love in Christ,
Abbot Tryphon

Monday September 9, 2013 / August 27, 2013
12th Week after Pentecost. Tone two.

Venerable Poemen the Great (450).
New Hieromartyrs Priests Michael Voskresensky and Stephen Nemkov, and those with them, of Nizhni-Novgorod (1918).
New Hieromartyrs John, John priest and Hieromartyr Methodius (1937).
New Hieromartyr Aleksander, priest (1939).
New Hieromartyr Vladimir, priest (1940).
St. Demetrius confessor, priest (1952).
Venerables Pimen, Kuksha, and Nicon of the Kiev Caves (1114).
St. Hosius (Osia) the Confessor, bishop of Cordova (4th c.).
St. Liberius, pope of Rome (366).
Venerable Poemen of Palestine (605).
Martyr Anthusa.
Venerable Sabbas of Benephali.
Great-martyr Phanurius the Newly Appeared of Rhodes (Greek).
Translation of the relics of Sts. Theognostus, Cyprian, and Photius, metropolitans of Moscow (1479).
St. Caesarius, bishop of Aries (543) (Celtic & British).
Martyr-hermit Decuman of Watchet.
Martyr Djan Darada, the Ethiopian eunuch of Queen Candace.
You can read the life of the saint in red, by clicking on the name.

THANKS to all of you who have been able to contribute towards the support of the monastery. These difficult times of economic hardship have impacted the monastery, and those of you who have been able to donate, have been our lifeline. May God bless you for your generosity, and kindness.

With love in Christ,  
Abbot Tryphon

Donations can be made directly to the monastery through PayPal, or you may send donations to:

All-Merciful Saviour Monastery
PO Box 2420
Vashon Island, WA 98070-2420 USA

The Scripture Readings for the Day

2 Corinthians 5:10-15

10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad. 11 Knowing, therefore, the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are well known to God, and I also trust are well known in your consciences.

Be Reconciled to God

12 For we do not commend ourselves again to you, but give you opportunity to boast on our behalf, that you may have an answer for those who boast in appearance and not in heart. 13 For if we are beside ourselves, it is for God; or if we are of sound mind, it is for you. 14 For the love of Christ compels us, because we judge thus: that if One died for all, then all died; 15 and He died for all, that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again.

Mark 1:9-15

John Baptizes Jesus

It came to pass in those days that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee, and was baptized by John in the Jordan. 10 And immediately, coming up from the water, He saw the heavens parting and the Spirit descending upon Him like a dove. 11 Then a voice came from heaven, “You are My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”

Satan Tempts Jesus

12 Immediately the Spirit drove Him into the wilderness. 13 And He was there in the wilderness forty days, tempted by Satan, and was with the wild beasts; and the angels ministered to Him.

Jesus Begins His Galilean Ministry

14 Now after John was put in prison, Jesus came to Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, 15 and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel.”

I invite my readers to listen to my
Ancient Faith Radio podcasts.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you Abbot. I agree with your thoughts about our government's march to war in Syria. Thank you for your courage in speaking out.

    I am a protestant pastor in Duluth, MN and discovered your blog through my friend who is the priest at Twelve Holy Apostles, Fr. Tim Sas.


    Jeff Hyatt