Orthodox Christian Community – UAOC http://uaoc.net/ Thu, 24 Nov 2022 02:51:17 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.9.3 https://uaoc.net/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/icon-1-150x150.png Orthodox Christian Community – UAOC http://uaoc.net/ 32 32 Holy Synod – Encyclicals – Thanksgiving 2022 https://uaoc.net/holy-synod-encyclicals-thanksgiving-2022/ Wed, 23 Nov 2022 19:23:04 +0000 https://uaoc.net/holy-synod-encyclicals-thanksgiving-2022/ November 24, 2022 To the clergy, monks and faithful of the Orthodox Church in America, My beloved children in the Lord, To my flock in the United States of America, I wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving Day! In a world that is often overwhelmed by fear, by details and complexity, by dissatisfaction, conflict and […]]]>

November 24, 2022

To the clergy, monks and faithful of the Orthodox Church in America,

My beloved children in the Lord,

To my flock in the United States of America, I wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving Day!

In a world that is often overwhelmed by fear, by details and complexity, by dissatisfaction, conflict and blame, how blessed it is to set aside a day dedicated solely to giving thanks for God’s blessings.

Of course, for Orthodox Christians, turning away from the dark roads of discontent, anxiety and accusation shouldn’t be reserved for just one day of the year. On the contrary, turning away from the tumult of the world should be a daily effort, an effort we make through prayer, divine services, fasting, almsgiving, and spiritual study. Each day should be lived simply and filled with thanksgiving. Each morning should begin with the glory offered to God; each evening must end with a doxology in his holy name.

So on this Thanksgiving Day, I invite all OCA congregants, in the United States and elsewhere, to join me in renewing our efforts to place thanksgiving at the heart of our daily lives. and of the life of our communities, so that we can better realize our vocation of eucharistic – that is to say “of thanksgiving” – Assembly of the Lord.

With the blessing of this feast of the Entry of Theotokos into the Temple, I sincerely remain yours in Christ,

+TICHON
Archbishop of Washington
Metropolitan of All America and Canada

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GREETINGS By His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros of America at the 31st International Hermes Exhibition Awards Dinner – From the Archdiocese https://uaoc.net/greetings-by-his-eminence-archbishop-elpidophoros-of-america-at-the-31st-international-hermes-exhibition-awards-dinner-from-the-archdiocese/ Thu, 17 Nov 2022 17:52:04 +0000 https://uaoc.net/greetings-by-his-eminence-archbishop-elpidophoros-of-america-at-the-31st-international-hermes-exhibition-awards-dinner-from-the-archdiocese/ CHEERS By His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros of America At the 31st Hermes Expo International Awards Dinner The Grand Marquis Old Bridge, New Jersey November 16, 2022 Your Grace Bishop Apostolos of Medeia, Archimandrite Christoforos Oikonomidis, Chancellor, Most Reverends and Reverend Fathers, President of Hermès Expo, Paul Kotrosios, Our Master of Ceremonies H. James Polos, Brothers […]]]>

CHEERS

By His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros of America

At the 31st Hermes Expo International Awards Dinner

The Grand Marquis

Old Bridge, New Jersey

November 16, 2022

Your Grace Bishop Apostolos of Medeia,

Archimandrite Christoforos Oikonomidis, Chancellor,

Most Reverends and Reverend Fathers,

President of Hermès Expo, Paul Kotrosios,

Our Master of Ceremonies H. James Polos,

Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Greetings to all of tonight’s winners! And allow me to express how delighted I am to be with you all for this 31st Hermes Expo International Awards Dinner. This is especially meaningful to me as I accept the leadership award on behalf of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America. And it should be noted in particular that we receive this award in the year of the celebration of the centenary of our Sacred Archdiocese as the first eparchy of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of the Diaspora.

All of the winners here tonight – in the other categories of the Philotimo Award, the Hippocratic Award, the Healthcare Hero Award, the Public Service Awards and the Paideia Awards – reflect the best of Homogeneia and the best of Hellenism.

I am especially proud of our dear friend Paul Kotrosios, his family and his organization for their offering to the Community. Hermes Expo has always supported Greek causes and companies. It is a real Agora of entrepreneurial genius where the exchanges that take place strengthen our common bonds of solidarity and mutuality.

Therefore, I am grateful to receive this recognition tonight – the leadership award that recognizes the central role of the Sacred Archdiocese of America in connecting the Homogeneia from coast to coast and coast to coast. side of the ocean to Greece, Cyprus and our most holy Ecumenical Patriarchate.

I pray that God’s blessings remain in abundance in the lives of all of tonight’s winners, and that the philosophy underlying Expo Hermès animates the communities from which it originates.

May the blessings of fellowship, brotherhood and common interests continue to strengthen the Omogeneia – both in the lives of all present tonight and all whose lives are touched by the ministries and services that we are celebrating tonight.

Thank you for this honor to your archdiocese in our hundredth year.

Thank you for your commitments to Greece and Cyprus.

Thank you for your unwavering support for our Mother Church of Constantinople.

May your families and friends enjoy good health and the spiritual and material prosperity that comes from living in accordance with the commandments and the will of God.

Thank you for this very special evening. I receive your honor with gratitude and with a deep awareness of our unity in Christ and our unity as a community.

May the Lord bless us all!

Photos: GOARCH/Dimitrios Panagos

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‘Community is your heart’: St George Rose Bay celebrates 60th anniversary https://uaoc.net/community-is-your-heart-st-george-rose-bay-celebrates-60th-anniversary/ Mon, 14 Nov 2022 05:07:40 +0000 https://uaoc.net/community-is-your-heart-st-george-rose-bay-celebrates-60th-anniversary/ St George’s Greek Orthodox Church in Rose Bay, Sydney’s eastern suburbs, celebrated its 60th anniversary on Saturday November 12 with a black-tie ball at the Fullerton Hotel. In the evening, the ballroom was filled with families, friends and parishioners from the parish, as well as many special guests. This included Archbishop Makarios of Australia; Her […]]]>

St George’s Greek Orthodox Church in Rose Bay, Sydney’s eastern suburbs, celebrated its 60th anniversary on Saturday November 12 with a black-tie ball at the Fullerton Hotel.

In the evening, the ballroom was filled with families, friends and parishioners from the parish, as well as many special guests. This included Archbishop Makarios of Australia; Her Excellency the Honorable Margaret Beazley AC QC, Governor of New South Wales; the Consul General of Greece in Sydney, Ioannis Mallikourtis; the parish priest of St George Rose Bay, Father Gerasimos Koutsouras; and the chairman of the parish committee, Spero Raissis; among many others.

All attendees were treated to a three course meal in the evening as they listened to a number of speeches highlighting the 60 year history of St George Rose Bay.

Event host Mary Coustas kicked off the official proceedings with a video of Sunday school students from the parish singing the national anthems of Greece and Australia.

Afterwards, Bishop Makarios, Ms. Beazley, Mr. Mallikourtis and Mr. Raissis all took the stage to speak.

In his address, Bishop Makarios thanked parishioners, benefactors and donors for their support of St George Rose Bay over the years.

“I have no doubt that he [Saint George] is very pleased with your noble efforts to see this parish prosper as you bring the light of God to this corner of Sydney,” the Archbishop said.

Ms Beazley then spoke of her ‘vicarial connection’ to the parish and stressed that while St George Rose Bay is not legend, ‘it is legendary’.

“When I thought of you as a parish, your church as a place in our community, it seemed to me that three things were of particular importance. The first is community – it’s your heart. It is your dedication to your church and as a member of that community that binds you,” Ms Beazley said.

“Also at the heart of this parish of St George is commemoration because it is a church that has been dedicated to service people, to Greeks, to Greek Australians who have served in the Australian Defense Services…it is a extraordinary dedication.

The Consul General was next to the scene and shared his observations on the Greek community in Australia since arriving in Sydney last month. Mr Mallikourtis stressed that while Greeks have thrived in Australia, more focus needs to be put on how to preserve the Greek language for future generations.

The last to speak was the president of the parish, Mr. Raissis. He spoke about the parish’s achievements, including its scholarship programs, and announced that some of the funds raised overnight would be donated to St Andrews Theological College in Sydney.

At the end of these official speeches, Bishop Makarios presented a small gift to the volunteers of St George Rose Bay in recognition of their dedication and long term service.

Young Greek dancers from the parish dance school then came out to perform a number of Greek dances. Everyone was then encouraged to hit the dance floor and enjoy live Greek music.

*Photos by real-time photography and video.

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Pope Francis in Bahrain: a royal reminder of the ‘fr…… | News and reports https://uaoc.net/pope-francis-in-bahrain-a-royal-reminder-of-the-fr-news-and-reports/ Fri, 11 Nov 2022 16:01:16 +0000 https://uaoc.net/pope-francis-in-bahrain-a-royal-reminder-of-the-fr-news-and-reports/ After greeting Pope Francis last week with a red carpet, a 21-gun salute and a contingent of horses to accompany his humble vehicle, King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa pointed to a document to characterize his kingdom: The 2017 Kingdom of Bahrain Declaration. “[Bahrain is] a cradle of mutual coexistence between followers of different faiths”, […]]]>

After greeting Pope Francis last week with a red carpet, a 21-gun salute and a contingent of horses to accompany his humble vehicle, King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa pointed to a document to characterize his kingdom:

The 2017 Kingdom of Bahrain Declaration.

“[Bahrain is] a cradle of mutual coexistence between followers of different faiths”, he said, “where everyone enjoys, under our protection after that of Almighty God, the freedom to perform their rituals and establish their places of worship, in an atmosphere of familiarity, harmony, and mutual understanding.

With Bahraini flags waving side by side with the Vatican banner, Francis was abundant in his praise. Enduring severe knee pain, he noted the country’s centuries-old ‘tree of life’, a 32-foot acacia that somehow survives in the Arabian desert.

The tree honors its roots.

“One thing stands out from the history of this land: it has always been a meeting place between different peoples,” Francis said. “It is in fact the life-giving water that the roots of Bahrain continue to feed on to this day.”

In the island nation the size of New York, flanked on either side by Iran and Saudi Arabia, from November 3-6, the pope visited his 160,000 Catholic migrants, mostly from the Philippines and the United States. India, living among a population of 1.5 million divided between foreign workers and citizens.

From 111 nationalities, 30,000 gathered last Saturday at the national stadium for mass.

Bahrain is a Sunni Muslim monarchy ruling over a small majority of Shiites. Christians make up 10-14% of the population, with up to 1,000 Christian citizens from Iraq, Palestine and Jordan who were present at the time of independence. Next to a 200-year-old Hindu temple, a renovated synagogue hosts the prayers of the few dozen Jewish citizens of Bahrain.

But in addition to pastoral responsibilities, Francis came ready to preach.

At the Bahrain Forum for Dialogue: East and West for Human Coexistence, his message was a quasi-homily on the 2017 declaration. Speaking to more than 200 religious leaders in the Gulf, he urged their leadership and introspection.

“It’s not enough to grant permits and recognize freedom of worship,” Francis said. “It is necessary to achieve true freedom of religion.”

The Bahrain Declaration, one of many similar charters issued by Muslim nations in recent years, has two main features. First, it was issued by the head of state, rather than an assembly of clerics and scholars. And second, where others spoke only to clearly defend the rights of Christian minorities, King Hamad’s document asserted that “freedom of choice” is a “divine gift”.

Bahrain does not proscribe any legal sanction for apostasy.

Francis’ message to the forum was discreet, not drawing the full implication of the statement. And his targets were many. He spoke of the need for education to counter religious fundamentalism. He promoted the role of women in the public sphere. And he called on listeners to oppose the agenda of the powerful that marginalizes the poor, migrants and the unborn.

But he centered his speech on prayer and the “meaningful relationship with God” that can only come with religious freedom.

His envoy, speaking to the press, provided the cultural context.

“I know a bit about the style of this part of the world,” said Paul Hinder, Catholic Bishop and Apostolic Administrator of Bahrain and neighboring countries. “They don’t like open criticism.”

He also echoed papal praise.

“Religious freedom in Bahrain is perhaps the best in the Arab world,” Hinder continued. “Even if not everything is ideal, there can be conversions [to Christianity]who are not at least officially punished like in other countries.

The US State Department’s annual report on international religious freedom notes that converts in Bahrain are reluctant to speak out publicly, but for fear of family and social pressures, not government restrictions. And Abraham Cooper, vice chairman of the US Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF), welcomed the statement.

“A lot of people talk about religious tolerance, but Bahrain lives it,” said the Center’s associate dean Simon Wiesenthal, who hosted the signature in 2017. “Just copy and paste this statement, and the world will become a better place .”

Francis’ visit was the 39th trip abroad of his pontificate, in which dialogue with the Muslim world was an important element. Two months earlier, he was in Kazakhstan and Bahrain was the 13th Muslim-majority place in his travel diary.

In 2019, in the United Arab Emirates, he co-sponsored the Document on Human Fraternity for World Peace and Living Together with the Egyptian Ahmed al-Tayyeb, Grand Imam of al-Azhar, the main center of learning in the world Sunni Muslim.

Francis referenced the document at the forum, and Tayyeb agreed.

“The Quran establishes…that man was created free and able to choose his belief, religion, ideology and doctrine,” he said. “It follows that they must be free to choose any religion.”

This is not yet true in many countries of the Islamic world.

In preparation for the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church (IDOP), observed on November 6 and 13, the World Evangelical Alliance (WEA) has noted that 1.3 billion Muslims do not have the freedom to leave their religion, an act criminalized in 24 nations.

“The most dangerous thing you can do right now,” said WEA General Secretary Thomas Schirrmacher, “is to convert from Islam to Christianity.”

But Bahrain is different, evangelical leaders said.

“I don’t think it’s that bad here,” said Johnnie Moore, invited by the king in his role as president of the Congress of Christian Leaders. “Much of what the pope said was meant to be heard in the region, including next door.”

Hrayr Jebejian, general secretary of the Gulf Bible Society, was more moderate.

“Bahrain is the most open and free country in the Gulf, then Kuwait, then the United Arab Emirates,” he said. “But it’s still a Gulf country.”

Agreeing with Hinder on the conversion, Jebejian said he believed the pope was indirectly calling on Bahrain and surrounding nations to give Christians the same freedom as Muslims in the West.

The Bible Society operates two bookstores in Bahrain, he said, one within the National Evangelical Church and the other within St. Christopher’s Anglican Cathedral. The nation hosted the Gulf’s first Catholic church in 1939 and last year opened the region’s largest, the 2,300-capacity Cathedral of Our Lady of Arabia.

There are no restrictions on their programs, Jebejian said, but to be more “comprehensive” – ​​quoting the pope – the practice of faith should also be welcomed outside of churches.

Critical analysts would also say: outside the mosque.

Bahrain is home to 598 Sunni places of worship and 763 for Shiites. But the “elephant in the room,” Amnesty International said, is the denial of full political rights to the Shia religious majority.

Saudi Arabia helped crush Arab Spring protests in 2011, and since then Shia activists have been arrested, deported and stripped of their citizenship. In 2016, the Bahraini government banned al-Wifaq, the main Shia opposition party.

Moore, a former USCIRF commissioner, warned advocates to be wary of Islamist political agendas seeking to protect religious freedom. The spiritual leader of al-Wifaq, he noted, is a known admirer of Iran’s Islamic Revolution and Ayatollah Khomeini. Still, he didn’t want anything to “distract for a second” from the beautiful gathering.

But USCIRF President Nury Turkel wanted the Pope to convey his concerns to the King. Even so, last year USCIRF removed Bahrain from its “special watch list” of offending nations, acknowledging improvements in recent years.

Without direct criticism and in accordance with his long-held conviction, Francis spoke out publicly against the death penalty. Since 2017, Bahrain has executed six prisoners. According to Human Rights Watch, 26 people are currently on death row, half of them for political beliefs.

And when Tayyeb called for an intra-confessional dialogue between Sunnis and Shiites, Francis hailed his initiative as “very courageous”.

But his public anger was directed outward.

“In the garden of humanity, instead of cultivating our environment,” Francis said, “we rather play with fire, missiles and bombs.”

An envoy from the Russian Orthodox Church was present. But lest his remark be interpreted one way, Francis called on religious leaders “not to support alliances against some, but means of encounter with all.”

And noting the Arabic meaning of Bahrain as “two seas”, his criticism was universal.

“Tragically, East and West are increasingly looking like two opposing seas,” Francis said. “We, on the other hand, are here together because we all intend to sail the same waters.”

Also in keeping with the pope’s style, the emphasis was on ecumenism rather than evangelism. Michael Lewis, Archbishop of the Anglican Diocese of Cyprus and the Gulf, praised Bahrain for its welcome to Christian communities and said they expressed a “comforting and overwhelming” appreciation to Francis.

And as the pope addressed the Muslim Council of the Wise, he returned to the image of the tree of life, this time in Eden. “Destined to embrace all of creation,” Francis said, human beings “turned their backs on the Creator” and “a flood of evil and death gushed out from the human heart.”

His answer: prayer and fraternity.

“Let us be guided by the word of Imam Ali,” Francis said, quoting the Shiite hero, Muhammad’s adopted son: “’People are of two types: they are either brothers and sisters in religion or similar men and women”. in humanity.

As he ended his apostolic mission in an address to the local clergy of the Gulf, the Catholic pontiff invoked the maternal intercession of the Virgin Mary. He also urged them to “spread Christian joy”, proclaiming the gospel in living witness.

And while he had previously urged the faithful migrants to ask for the grace to be kind to those who mistreated them by following the Sermon on the Mount, they were also to, through peace, “break the chains of evil.”

His last words invoked the imitation of the prophets.

“They challenge false human and religious certainties,” Francis said, “and they invite everyone to conversion.”

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Live Updates: Russia’s War in Ukraine https://uaoc.net/live-updates-russias-war-in-ukraine/ Tue, 08 Nov 2022 09:44:00 +0000 https://uaoc.net/live-updates-russias-war-in-ukraine/ Responding to various media reports of a push for negotiations with Russia, Ukrainian officials said on Tuesday that a key condition for any settlement of the war was the restoration of occupied Ukrainian territory. “The main condition of [Ukrainian] President of is restoration of [Ukrainian] Territorial Integrity”, Oleksiy Danilov, Secretary of the National Security and […]]]>

Responding to various media reports of a push for negotiations with Russia, Ukrainian officials said on Tuesday that a key condition for any settlement of the war was the restoration of occupied Ukrainian territory.

“The main condition of [Ukrainian] President of is restoration of [Ukrainian] Territorial Integrity”, Oleksiy Danilov, Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine, said on Twitter.

Mykhailo Podolyak, adviser to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, asked on Twitter“What do you mean by the word ‘negotiations’? The Russian ultimatums are well known: “we came with tanks, admit defeat and [the loss of territory].’ This is unacceptable. So what to talk about? Or are you just hiding the word “surrender” behind the word “settlement”? »

A bit of context: Both men spoke following reports that senior US officials have urged Ukraine in recent weeks to signal that they are still open to diplomatic talks with Russia. The push comes amid fears that public support for the country’s war effort is waning with no conflict in sight and neither side willing to start peace talks, officials told CNN. sources close to the discussions.

The talks are not intended to encourage the Ukrainians to negotiate now – rather, the United States wants Kyiv to make it clearer that it wants to find a solution to the conflict and that Ukraine has high moral standards, sources said.

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Philoptochos donates baskets | News, Sports, Jobs https://uaoc.net/philoptochos-donates-baskets-news-sports-jobs/ Sat, 29 Oct 2022 04:51:45 +0000 https://uaoc.net/philoptochos-donates-baskets-news-sports-jobs/ Preparing the baskets were, front row, left to right, Pam Makricosta, Trish Kapiris, Olga Adams, Joyce Drane, Dorothea Stakias, Heidi Psaros, Alexandra Melonas, Irene Anetakis, Argiro Latousakis, Janet DiLorenzo and Marina Luckow; and in the back, Peggy Makricostas, Dr Maria Tranto, Connie Mastromichalis, Pearl Tranto, Elaine Flinn, […]]]>






Preparing the baskets were, front row, left to right, Pam Makricosta, Trish Kapiris, Olga Adams, Joyce Drane, Dorothea Stakias, Heidi Psaros, Alexandra Melonas, Irene Anetakis, Argiro Latousakis, Janet DiLorenzo and Marina Luckow; and in the back, Peggy Makricostas, Dr Maria Tranto, Connie Mastromichalis, Pearl Tranto, Elaine Flinn, Naomi Loucas, Grace Madias, Effie Mousadis and Mary Kohelis. — Contributed

Philoptochos members Darlene Ballas, Pearl Tranto and Janet DiLorenzo deliver the baskets outside the WMC Oncology Ward to Nancy Reed, center, physician assistant, and Josie Moran, registered nurse. — Contributed

In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October, Philoptochos members of All Saints Greek Orthodox Church delivered 24 “cancer treatment” baskets in the oncology unit at Weirton Medical Center. Each basket included fleece blankets, slippers, biotene, moisturizers, puzzle books and pens. A $25 gift card to help with gas and/or special foods was also included. A spokesperson for the group noted that “Of all the projects our Philoptochos has done, this has been one of the most rewarding.”



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Stephen Nemic, 85 – Riverside Brookfield landmark https://uaoc.net/stephen-nemic-85-riverside-brookfield-landmark/ Tue, 25 Oct 2022 21:03:53 +0000 https://uaoc.net/stephen-nemic-85-riverside-brookfield-landmark/ Stephen Nemic Stephen Nemic, 85, a former longtime resident of Brookfield, died Oct. 16, 2022 in Nevada. Prior to retiring to Nevada, Mr. Nemic resided in Brookfield for more than 50 years. He was a member of St. Panteleimon Orthodox Church in Summit, and he was a kind gentleman who gave to much and was […]]]>
Stephen Nemic

Stephen Nemic, 85, a former longtime resident of Brookfield, died Oct. 16, 2022 in Nevada.

Prior to retiring to Nevada, Mr. Nemic resided in Brookfield for more than 50 years. He was a member of St. Panteleimon Orthodox Church in Summit, and he was a kind gentleman who gave to much and was a proud alumnus of Penn State University.

After graduating from Penn State, he served in the United States Army. During his employment with the now defunct Rock Island Railroad, Mr. Nemic began and enjoyed a successful career in real estate for over 30 years.

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Should Christians in Israel Avoid “Offensive” Evangelism of Jews? https://uaoc.net/should-christians-in-israel-avoid-offensive-evangelism-of-jews/ Sat, 22 Oct 2022 12:27:00 +0000 https://uaoc.net/should-christians-in-israel-avoid-offensive-evangelism-of-jews/ Jews for Jesus and this is the May 2018 “Behold Your God Jerusalem” Gospel Campaign in Israel. | jewsforjesus.org As the end of the pandemic brings more Christians back to Israel for visits to the Holy Land, should they evangelize the Jewish people when they visit? That’s the question raised in a Jerusalem Post report […]]]>
Jews for Jesus
Jews for Jesus and this is the May 2018 “Behold Your God Jerusalem” Gospel Campaign in Israel. |

As the end of the pandemic brings more Christians back to Israel for visits to the Holy Land, should they evangelize the Jewish people when they visit?

That’s the question raised in a Jerusalem Post report on the return of Christians to Israel to mark the biblical Feast of Tabernacles, or Sukkot, earlier this month after COVID-19 restrictions were lifted.

It is estimated that more than 2,000 pilgrims from 70 nations would travel to Jerusalem from October 9 to 16 for the celebration, which was sponsored by the International Christian Embassy in Jerusalem (ICEJ), according to the news outlet.

But as the rally heralded the return of Christian tourism to Israel post-pandemic, some Jews, like Israel365 founder Rabbi Tuly Weisz, seem ambivalent about the trend – which for them also means the return of evangelization in the Holy Land.

According to Weisz, while non-Jewish tourists should be “warmly welcomed” to “get closer to the true fulfillment of Sukkot,” he appeared less welcoming to the evangelical practice of sharing the gospel with Jewish people.

“Unfortunately, some of the Christian visitors hope to use their time in the Jewish state to engage in missionary activity,” he wrote. “The International Christian Embassy in Jerusalem (ICEJ) is doing its best to prevent this, warning its guests to refrain from such offensive behavior.”

Weisz pointed to several Christians who expressed opposition to missionary activity while visiting Israel, including David Swaggerty, senior pastor of Charisma Life Ministries in Columbus, Ohio, who was among those in Israel for the celebration.

Swaggerty reportedly said, “As a Christian who believes in the Great Commission, I think the call to spread the gospel does not apply to the Jewish people. Especially in light of centuries of Christian anti-Semitism, I am here to support Israel unconditionally. and without any conditions.”

In an interview with The Christian Post, Swaggerty clarified that while he has no problem taking the gospel around the world at ministers’ conferences in faraway lands like Thailand and Tanzania, when he is in Israel, it’s a different story.

“When I go to Israel or with my Jewish friends to Columbus, the mission is not an option,” he said. “I don’t do that. I don’t believe it’s God’s will for my life to do that.”

Acknowledging that some — if not many — of his peers would disagree with his approach, Swaggerty said he doesn’t mind.

“They think you should convert everyone you meet, but I don’t see it that way,” he added.

Swaggerty said the Jewish people held a special place in his heart: As a teenager, he worked in a jewelry store where he was surrounded by “a dozen Jewish men who became my family.”

He said he also saw how they were treated by Christians who tried to evangelize them and, as Swaggerty put it, “almost force them to convert”.

“I don’t think it’s my responsibility. My vocation is to build bridges of trust and friendship between the Jewish people and Christians,” he added. “In doing this, I pledge to myself and to my followers, my congregation, not to mission the Jewish people.”

What about the messianic passages of the Old Testament, like Isaiah 53, which most Protestant theologians consider fulfilled by Jesus at his first coming?

For Swaggerty, whose ministry statement of faith affirms Christ’s death and resurrection, it is “no use fighting over whether he came once or not at all” because “when he comes he will not there will be no doubt who he is.”

“One day Israel is going to see the Messiah. They pray for him all the time, and one day he is going to show himself, and when he does, the whole land of Israel, the whole nation, is going to embrace him. than Messiah,” he explained.

“I don’t want to betray my own faith, but I don’t want to impose it on my Jewish friends.”

While it’s unclear whether groups like the ICEJ — which didn’t respond to a CP request for comment — are discouraging Christians from evangelizing in Israel, Swaggerty said he’s been arranging several Earth visits. Holy and would warn people not to proselytize.

Now, he says, after attending this year’s Feast of Tabernacles with Weisz, he believes a new interfaith movement is afoot.

“What we’re seeing on a much larger scale…is like a spiritual phenomenon happening around the world between Orthodox Jews and Evangelical Christians, where they’re ready to walk across the aisle,” he said. .

“We find that when you build relationships of trust, we can work together because we serve the same God.”

But for Messianic Jewish author, radio host and columnist Michael Brown, such an approach to evangelism is a “terrible disservice” to the Jewish people.

“All Jewish believers I know urge Christians to share the Good News with our people,” Brown told CP. “It is the least loving thing you can do to withhold the water of life from a Jewish person. Jews and Gentiles are saved in exactly the same way. It is through faith in Jesus, through his death on the cross.

“And without it, there is no salvation.”

As a self-identified “Jewish believer in Jesus,” Brown said he believed it was “heretic” to exclude Jews from the Great Commission.

“I appreciate the sensitivity. I appreciate recognizing that for many Jews, Jesus is a dirty word. I appreciate that Jewish identity and the preservation of our people is important,” he said. . “But faith in Jesus will improve that rather than take it away.”

For Brown, Swaggerty’s views on Israel’s ultimate salvation are “terribly flawed”.

“Nowhere does the Bible say that salvation will be retroactive and that on that day every Jew throughout history will be retroactively saved,” he said. “It’s completely against the Bible.”

Instead, Brown added, the Bible teaches that for Israel there will be a national turn to the Messiah at the end of time.

Although Brown agreed that Christians visiting Israel should “recognize that they are not here to save Israel, they are here to see the country,” he also said believers should not go out of their way to avoid to share the Good News.

“If providentially they meet someone and can share the Gospel, that’s wonderful. But they’re not here to cold-shoulder into the country and annoy people going about their daily business,” he said. he declares.

“But if you’re in a taxi and you’re there as a Christian and you have the opportunity to share, do it! Why not? Why hide the news of the Jewish messiah from the Jewish people?”

Before the pandemic, Christians accounted for 55% of all tourism in 2019, according to data cited by The Jerusalem Post. More than a quarter of those visitors identified themselves as evangelicals.

In 2020, however, tourism fell by 81%, from 4.5 million in 2019 to just over 831,000.

Ian M. Giatti is a reporter for The Christian Post. He can be contacted at: ian.giatti@christianpost.com.

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PRRI https://uaoc.net/prri/ Wed, 19 Oct 2022 18:51:52 +0000 https://uaoc.net/prri/ Perceptions of churches regarding LGBTQ people Three in four worshipers (75%) agree that their church is generally welcoming and kind to everyone, including LGBTQ+ people. Large majorities of all religious groups agree, including 81% of white Protestants, 80% of black Protestants, 74% of white evangelical Protestants, 74% of other Protestants of color, 73% of other […]]]>

Perceptions of churches regarding LGBTQ people

Three in four worshipers (75%) agree that their church is generally welcoming and kind to everyone, including LGBTQ+ people. Large majorities of all religious groups agree, including 81% of white Protestants, 80% of black Protestants, 74% of white evangelical Protestants, 74% of other Protestants of color, 73% of other Christians, 72% white Catholics and 64% Hispanic Catholics. There are no substantial partisan differences either, as 76% of Republicans, 75% of Independents, and 75% of Democrats agree that their church is welcoming and kind to everyone, including LGBTQ+ people.

There are no substantial differences in race or education, but younger practitioners are less likely than older ones to agree. Two-thirds of 18-29 year olds (68%) agree their church is welcoming and kind to everyone, including LGBTQ+ people, compared to 74% of 30-49 year olds, 74% of 50-64 year olds and 79 year olds. % of people aged 65 and over.

At the same time, the faithful are less convinced that not welcoming LGBTQ+ people could be negative. About four in ten (39%) agree that churches alienate adults in their 20s and 30s when they do not accept and welcome LGBTQ+ people, while 55% disagree that alienation is a risk. A slim majority of mainstream white Protestants (52%) agree that not accepting LGBTQ+ people alienates young adults, as do 45% of black Protestants and 44% of white Catholics, 39% of Hispanic Catholics and 37 % of other Christians. Other Protestants of Color (31%) and Evangelical White Protestants (30%) are the least likely to agree it could alienate people in their 20s and 30s.

There are also partisan divisions on this question, since only 25% of Republicans agree, against 44% of independents and 56% of Democrats.

Interestingly, there is no substantial age gap on this question, as people aged 18-29 (41%), 30-49 (38%), 50-64 ( 42%) and 65+ (38%) are all similarly likely to agree that churches alienate adults in their 20s and 30s when they do not accept and welcome people LGBTQ+. There is also no significant difference based on the perception of their own church: among those who agree that their church is welcoming and kind to LGBTQ+ people, 41% agree that churches alienate young adults if they are not not welcoming, compared to 40% of those who disagree that their church is welcoming and kind to LGBTQ+ people.

What worshipers want to see in church regarding LGBTQ issues

I prefer not to discuss gender and sexuality issues

Although most say they welcome LGBTQ+ people into their church, worshipers are also split on whether they’d rather attend a church that doesn’t discuss gender and sexuality issues, with 48% agreeing and 48% disagree with the statement. The majority of white Catholics (59%), Hispanic Catholics (53%) and white mainline Protestants (52%) agree that they would rather attend churches that do not discuss these issues. Just under half of other Christians (48%) and white evangelical Protestants (45%) agree, compared to less than four in ten other Protestants of color (38%) and Black Protestants (37%).

A majority of Republicans (52%) and half of independents (50%) agree they would rather attend a church that does not discuss gender and sexuality issues, while 41% of Democrats agree.

White (51%) worshipers are more likely than Black (39%) and Hispanic (45%) worshipers to agree with this statement. White worshipers with a four-year college degree or higher (45%) are less likely than those without a four-year college degree (54%) to agree that they would prefer to attend a church that does not discuss gender and sexuality issues. There are no big age differences on this issue.

Those who agree that their church is welcoming and kind to everyone, including LGBTQ+ people, are just as likely as those who disagree that their church is welcoming and kind to everyone agree that they would rather attend a church that does not discuss gender and sexuality issues (50% vs. 46%).

More LGBTQ People in Church Leadership

Most Christians who attend church at least a few times a year are not particularly interested in seeing more LGBTQ+ people leading their church, as only 21% agree they would like to see this, while 72% disagree. Hispanic Catholics (39%) are more likely than any other group to agree that they wish their church had more LGBTQ+ people in leadership positions. Three in ten white Protestants (30%) and about one in four white Catholics (25%), other Christians (24%) and black Protestants (23%) agree. Only about another in ten Protestants of Color (13%) and Evangelical White Protestants (10%) agree that they wish their church had more LGBTQ+ people in the leadership.

There are also considerable partisan divisions, with 39% of Democrats agreeing they would like to see more LGBTQ+ people leading their church, compared to 23% of independents and 9% of Republicans.

Hispanic worshipers (30%) and black worshipers (24%) are more likely to agree with this statement than white worshipers (19%). White congregants with a four-year college degree or higher (26%) are more likely than those without a four-year college degree (15%) to agree that they want their church to have more LGBTQ+ people in leadership positions.

Young practitioners, particularly those aged 18-29 (33%), are more likely than practitioners aged 30-49 (22%), 50-64 (21%) and 65+ (17%) agree that they wish their church had more LGBTQ+ people in leadership positions.

Those who agree that their church is welcoming and kind to everyone, including LGBTQ+ people, are just as likely as those who disagree that their church is welcoming and kind to everyone to agree that they would like their church to have more LGBTQ+ people in leadership positions (23% vs. .24%).

More talk about transgender rights?

Most congregants also don’t necessarily want their church to talk more about transgender rights. Less than one in five (18%) agree, while 78% disagree, that they want their church to talk more about transgender rights. Again, Hispanic Catholics (33%) are the most likely of these religious groups to agree with the statement, while 22% of Black Protestants, 21% of other Christians, 19% of White Protestants, 17% of white Catholics and 15% of other Protestants of color agree. Only 10% of white evangelical Protestants want their church to talk more about transgender issues.

Three in ten Democrats (31%) agree they would like to see their church talk more about transgender issues, compared to 20% of independents and just 7% of Republicans.

Hispanic (25%) and Black (24%) followers are more likely than White (14%) followers to agree that they would like this discussion. White worshipers with a four-year college degree or higher (18%) are more likely than those without a four-year college degree (11%) to agree that they would like their church to talk more about transgender issues.

Young followers, especially those aged 18-29 (30%), are more likely than followers aged 30-49 (18%), 50-64 (15%) and 65+ (14%) agree that they want their church to talk more about transgender rights.

Those who agree that their church is welcoming and kind to everyone, including LGBTQ+ people, are just as likely as those who disagree that their church is welcoming and kind to everyone to agree that they would like their church to talk more about transgender issues (18% vs. 21%).

About sample

These results come from 2,374 faithful Christians who attend services, other than weddings and funerals, at least a few times a year. The religious composition of the sample is 27% White Evangelical Protestant, 16% White Mainstream Protestant, 16% White Catholic, 13% Black Protestant, 10% Hispanic Catholic, 6% Hispanic Protestant , 4% other colored Protestants, 4% latter. saint of the day, 3% Jehovah’s Witnesses, 2% other Catholics of color and less than 1% Orthodox Christians. Due to sample sizes, the categories reported are: White Evangelical Protestant, White Primary Protestant, White Catholic, Black Protestant, Hispanic Catholic, Other Protestant of Color (including Hispanic Protestant), and Other Christian (including Other Catholic colored, Jehovah’s Witness, last-day saint and Orthodox).

Politically, 36% are Republicans, 28% are Democrats and 25% are independents.

This group resembles the nation as a whole in terms of education and race, but is somewhat older than the general population, with 28% aged 65 or older (vs. 22% overall) , 28% aged 50-64 (vs. 26% overall). ), 29% aged 30-49 (vs. 33% overall) and 15% aged 18-29 (vs. 19% overall).

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The Metropolitan of Montenegro serves at the Sretensky Monastery in Moscow (+VIDEO) https://uaoc.net/the-metropolitan-of-montenegro-serves-at-the-sretensky-monastery-in-moscow-video/ Mon, 17 Oct 2022 16:26:16 +0000 https://uaoc.net/the-metropolitan-of-montenegro-serves-at-the-sretensky-monastery-in-moscow-video/ Moscow, October 17, 2022 Photo: mitropolija.com His Eminence Metropolitan Joanijike, Head of the Serbian Orthodox Metropolis of Montenegro, is currently in Moscow to host and bless the “Serbian Comfort for the Russian Heart” festival tomorrow, which will include an evening in honor of his predecessor, the ever-memorable Metropolitan Amfilohije of Montenegro. Arrived in Moscow this […]]]>

Moscow, October 17, 2022

Photo: mitropolija.com

His Eminence Metropolitan Joanijike, Head of the Serbian Orthodox Metropolis of Montenegro, is currently in Moscow to host and bless the “Serbian Comfort for the Russian Heart” festival tomorrow, which will include an evening in honor of his predecessor, the ever-memorable Metropolitan Amfilohije of Montenegro.

Arrived in Moscow this weekend with His Grace Bishop Jovan of Pakrac and Slavonia (Croatia), the Montenegrin Primate celebrated the Divine Liturgy yesterday morning at the Sretensky Monastery in Moscow, reports the Metropolis of Montenegro.

Expressing his great joy at having the chance to serve with the Sretensky brothers, the Metropolitan said in his speech after the service that in this difficult time, it is very important that we pray together and feel the sufferings and tribulations that we all live in our own way:

We know from our Christian experience that prayer can help the most, especially when we encounter difficulties and troubles. Prayer brings us closer to God, brings us back into the arms of God, and when we are close to God, we think completely differently than when we are far away; we feel and see reality completely differently from closeness to God than when we distance ourselves from God. Of course, when we walk away from God, the source of life and eternal light and the joy of eternal life, we sink into darkness and all we see is dark, sad and difficult. And when we return to God, who is the source of light, all reality is transformed, and it is especially important that we see the face of our neighbor in a more beautiful light.

Meet. Joanikije also noted that the day marks the feast of Saint Paisije, the Patriarch of Peć, who was the first to establish close ties with fraternal Russia as a program of the Serbian Church. He particularly pointed out that Montenegro and the Church there managed to survive during the times of the Great Turkish Yoke due to its close ties with Russia.

Photo: mitropolija.com

“When we are gathered around Christ, we are safe and strong and we look with hope and with a bright vision to our future,” His Eminence said, emphasizing the importance of Church unity.

He also expressed his gratitude for the comfort and encouragement Russian Patriarch Alexei II and Metropolitan Kirill (the current Patriarch) showed to the Serbian people when Yugoslavia collapsed. And now that Russia is going through a difficult time, “I can pray for you and for peace”, Met. Joanikije said “for overcoming temptations and for a just solution to these temptations which today affect the Russian Orthodox Church, the Russian people and the Russian state”.

Meet. Joanikije then presented Sretensky Abbot John (Ludischev) with a pectoral cross, and Fr. John presented him with an icon of the new martyr Hilarion (Troitsky), whose relics are precious to Sretensky.

Meet. Joanikije and Bp. Jovan will solemnly open the “Serbian Comfort for the Russian Heart” festival in Moscow tomorrow.

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