I am an Orthodox Priest, I have a title: Father Michael. I was born and brought up in a 1928 Prayer Book Catholic, Church of England, semi rural parish. I have been an Orthodox priest and monk for over thirty years now.
I would like to help people of whatever belief to access the true faith. That true faith is really only to be found in the Church that has persisted through the last two thousand years, never deviating from the Faith as taught by Christ, expounded by His Apostles, and the succeeding generation of Fathers and Ecumenical Councils. Beyond that point, the Church does not deviate.
The Church has had those who broke away thinking that they might with impunity, add to or subtract from that original Faith that the whole Church throughout the first millennium adhered to.
Those who broke away were a minority of the then Church. They themselves subsequently suffered further breaks until today there are myriads (literally) of “churches” each teaching something different and all of them measurably drifting further and further from that original Apostolic Faith of Christ.
Quite frankly, a 1950s adherent of 1928 Prayer Book Church of England faith and practice would simply not recognise the present day Church of England as even Christian.
The original Church of the first millennium, which persists throughout the world today, does not recognise the present day Church of England as Christian.
That is the point that I start from.
So how to deal with people who regard the present day Church of England (the only version of which they have known through their adult lives) as a superior Christian body and who therefore treat those who hold the true first millennium Faith with amused contempt?
They regard themselves as pragmatic, more flexible and tolerant of modern ways of doing things, commonsensical, uncritical of the innovations which the Church of England has been loading pretty well yearly onto their people. The problem with that is that it is not the faith or ways of the Church of the first millennium, the Church which was fixedly following the Apostolic traditions built directly upon the words of Christ Himself.
The Christian Faith directly follows from the Old Testament Faith and when understood properly, it is seen to be a strong set of beliefs and traditions that is not at all tolerant of evil. We of that original Faith, see the surrounding modern western culture as literally evil sewage in which we are immersed, and we fight strongly against it. The modern so-called western “churches” are part of that evil sewage culture, they have embraced it fully, they are part of it and their leaders spread it. Oh they pretend to be “Christian” but their “Christianity” is the Christianity of the antichristians whether they believe that or not. They are part of the enemy, they are not allies at all.
Finding ways of convincing people who innocently accept that pseudo faith now practised by the Church of England, that they are on an exceedingly spiritually dangerous path that does not lead them to unity with Christ, is difficult. They are convinced that they are on the right course, headed for heaven.
Today, in this world there are many of what I would term as heralds of antichrist – those who smooth his was, preparing the people in all institutions including the churches to accept him when at last he appears.
There are also very reliable Orthodox Elders, modern-day prophets, pretty well unknown to western “Christians” and they have been saying for some time now that the world is in an extremely dangerous physical and spiritual place. Many governments are literally playing with fire. The peoples particularly of the west are playing with spiritual fire, and they are going to get badly, possibly terminally burned.
Elder Paisios of Mount Athos said: “It’s possible that you’ll live through much which is described in the Book of Revelations. Much is coming to the surface, little by little. The situation is horrible. Madness has gone beyond all bounds. Apostasy is upon us, and now the only thing left is for the ‘son of perdition’ (2 Thess. 2:3) to come. The world has turned into a madhouse A great confusion will reign, in which each government will begin to do whatever comes into its head. We’ll see how the most unlikely, the most insane, events will happen. The only good thing is that these events will happen in very quick succession. Ecumenism, common markets, a one-world government, a single made-to-order religion: such is the plan of these devils.
Elder Ilya of Mount Athos said about two years ago: “The antichrist is in sight”. He has been echoed by senior Church Leaders.
Now is not the time to continue to play with the pseudo Christianity that pervades the west. Now is the time to sober up, to realise that the one true faith is exemplified only in the Church that has remained fully faithful for two millennia.