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Update on New Talks

For the Orthodox Faithful who are Confused About Covidism cont.

 

                                             SECTION B

 

For the Orthodox Faithful who are Confused About Covidism

by Father Kosmas

1 January 2022

 

Updated and revised: 5 September 2022 (Note: apart from new sections being added, some previous sections have been either revised or extra information added - please re-read.) 

Contents:

SECTION A

Parts One to Ten: go to Table of Contents

 

SECTION B

Part Eleven: The Connection Between COVID-19 Vaccines and Aborted Fetuses

Part Twelve: Abortion, Therapeutic Abortion and Hormonal Contraceptives - CURRENT

Part Thirteen: Fetal Cell Lines in Medicines and in the Food and Cosmetic Industries - SOON

 

The following sections have been added or revised:

* Part Five: COVID-19 Facts that are Being Intentionally Ignored or Hidden

 

To go to the end of the article, please click here.

 

PART ELEVEN: The Connection Between COVID-19 Vaccines and Aborted Fetuses

What is the best way to approach this topic?

We now come to another very important topic regarding COVID-19 vaccines. Even though the words vaccine or vaccines will be used frequently, it should be noted that they are not actual vaccines. Please read about this in Part One under the heading Do the COVID-19 vaccines meet the criteria for traditional vaccines? The faithful need to familiarise themselves with this before continuing with the article below. It is short but very important.

Before we look at what the doctors, scientists and whistleblowers have to say about the connection between COVID-19 vaccines and the cells which come from aborted fetuses (fetal cell lines – FCLs), let us examine what those who have led or are leading holy lives, and are grace-filled have to say: our saints, our departed and living elders and pious Orthodox clergymen and monastics. Some may well ask: how do we know if someone is grace-filled? Christ Himself said, “You will know them by their fruits” (Matthew 7:16).

 

What are the issues surrounding COVID-19 vaccines and the use of FCLs?

The basic issue is that some claim there is no connection between COVID-19 vaccines and fetal cell lines (FCLs) while others say there is definitely a connection and Orthodox Christians should not receive the COVID-19 vaccines. Then there are those who admit that there is a connection between the COVID-19 vaccines and the cells of aborted fetuses (FCLs) but they claim it is okay for Orthodox Christians to receive the COVID-19 vaccines since the cells of aborted fetuses are also used for many things in society today: the testing and/or production of several medications and the testing of many artificial flavourings, as well as certain food products. They are implying that, because FCLs are used frequently in common products, they are impossible to avoid.

We will see that all of the COVID-19 vaccines available have used aborted fetal cells (FCLs) at some stage(s) of testing, development, production, and design. This is important to know because the Orthodox faithful can then clearly see how the pharmaceutical companies, and even Orthodox clergymen, use people’s lack of knowledge to trick them into believing that the COVID-19 vaccines are free of FCLs.

 

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Should the Covidists and Ecumenists be ignored regarding FCLs and vaccines?

Many of those who argue that there is no connection between the COVID-19 vaccines and fetal cell lines (FCLs) are either Covidists or Ecumenists (or both) because their minds are darkened by heresy and unbelief. They are supportive of COVID-19 restrictions, are pro-mass vaccination, and some are even supportive of vaccine passports being used to enter Orthodox churches. The alarming thing is that already vaccine passports are being required to enter some Orthodox churches around the world; some churches are even imposing a segregation of vaccinated and unvaccinated parishioners
– see here.

These impious clergymen have introduced many heresies and blasphemous practices into our churches involving Holy Communion, the cross, icons and holy relics. They ignore numerous renowned and eminent doctors and scientists, including those pious Orthodox clergymen and monastics who themselves are doctors and scientists and who are speaking out against many COVID restrictions, the COVID-19 vaccines, and in particular about their mandates. Above all, they demonically ignore the saints and our living and departed grace-filled elders.

Would it be wrong to say that these people are producing rotten, smelly and horribly tasting fruit, while the saints and the grace-filled elders, the pious clergy and monastics are producing beautiful, sweet-smelling and tasty fruit? As you read on, keep Christ’s words in mind: “You will know them by their fruits” (Matthew 7:16). If you do this sincerely, you will not fall into error.

 

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Why are we told not to follow the saints and elders on medical matters?

Of course, there are those who are wise in their own eyes (Isaiah 5:21), who argue that God cannot enlighten grace-filled elders about medical matters, because they are limited by their absence of medical qualifications, and we are therefore not required to listen to them. To see how dangerously false this is, the faithful should re-read the section regarding this matter in Part Eight, under the heading Can the saints and elders speak about medical matters? Why is this argument dangerous? It is dangerous because the Covidists desperately want the faithful not to turn to those enlightened by God, but to listen only to them and their specially chosen doctors and scientists, all of whom are working, directly or indirectly, with the pharmaceutical companies, and all of whom ignore obvious evidence that the vaccines are causing serious side effects, including death.

Yes, it is hard to believe that darkened Orthodox clergymen want us to follow their fellow darkened doctors and scientists and to ignore, and even reject, our God-enlightened Orthodox saints, elders, etc. But pious Orthodox Christians need to put their trust in those who can express God’s will. As the holy Fathers say, Orthodox Christians who do not humbly submit to the wisdom of the saints and elders will fall into deception, heresy or schism, thus losing their souls for all eternity. Lord Jesus Christ, help us to humbly submit to the wisdom of the saints and elders and not to those who are darkened and far away from You. Amen.

In the section mentioned above, Can the saints and elders speak about medical matters? we find three examples of saints who could speak about medical matters even though they had no formal medical training. They were Saint Porphyrios of Kafsokalivia (†1991), Saint Paisios the Athonite (†1994) and Saint John of Shanghai and San Francisco (†1966). We also find the following
wonderful example:

 

A God-given Eldress: Schemanun Theodosia (†2014)

 

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Schemanun Theodosia (Kosorotikhina) of the Ryazan region of Russia, reposed in 2014. Born in 1923, she quietly led an exemplary Christian life amidst the bitter Soviet reality of her time. After a serious work accident at about thirty years of age, she remained in a coma for almost twenty years.* When she finally regained consciousness, she was found to be totally paralysed from the neck down. 

At the same time, it was discovered that God had granted her the gifts of clairvoyance and of healing through prayer. She used these gifts for the good of the many people who came to her small village home, taking up a nearly forty-year ministry of consoling, guiding, and helping those in need. In time she became well known throughout Russia. This is a deeply moving story of one who, while bearing a weighty cross of affliction herself, was able to lighten the burdens of others through the power of Christ working in her.

Sometimes doctors and surgeons would come to Matushka to consult with her about cases. It would happen that a conference of doctors would disagree with what she had told them. But eventually her diagnoses would be confirmed. She would even be present in spirit during surgeries, and afterwards would describe the whole process of the operations. She would joke afterwards, “I handed the scalpel to the nurses.” 

For the full life in the magazine Orthodox Word, see here.

(The Orthodox Word is one of the best Orthodox magazines in the English language.)

See digital subscription here.

See print subscription here.

 

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As there were proud doctors and surgeons then who disagreed with the Holy Eldress, there are also proud Orthodox doctors and surgeons now who disagree with the saints, holy elders and eldresses. This should not surprise us. But worse than these unfortunate, educated, and spiritually blind medical gods, are Orthodox clergymen who should know that our saints, holy elders and eldresses are vessels of the Holy Spirit who are enlightened by God. So, why would these clergymen, and for that fact, even monastics, theologians and lay people, disregard God’s chosen ones? Only one word comes to mind - unbelief! When the Son of Man comes, will He find faith on the earth? (Luke 18:8)

* This is a wonderful example that goes against the euthanasia and assisted suicide fanatics who want to kill everyone who is suffering, even for conditions far less serious than a coma. If someone no longer wants to live because they have depression due to some problem in their life, the demonically inspired proponents of euthanasia are only too keen to help. Let’s not forget that many who suffered from depression, or even physical afflictions, got better with time. But even if someone improves only slightly or does not improve at all, it does not mean that suicide is the answer. If this were so, then all the examples we read in the lives of saints, of those who endured suffering with patience, faith and hope in Christ, would be meaningless. This is what is called suffering for Christ’s sake. It should be known that those who suffer for Christ’s sake, whether mentally, emotionally or physically, are counted as martyrs. Those who commit suicide, not only would not be counted as martyrs, but will not be counted among the saved (with some exceptions, such as a mental illness where a person is not responsible for their own decision-making).

 

What do the holy elders tell us about vaccines and aborted fetuses?

In Part Eight: Saints and Grace-filled Elders on Traditional and COVID-19 Vaccines, we heard what ten saints and grace-filled elders had to say about vaccines in general. A few of these elders made specific reference to COVID-19 vaccines and their link to aborted fetuses. The following is what
they said:

 

1. Elder Gabriel the Athonite

 

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The following is an urgent plea that was made during an interview on 27 June 2021, from Elder Gabriel, a disciple of St. Paisios the Athonite:

 They murder babies and put aborted embryos in the vaccines; these cause infections in your body… 

 These people aren’t trustworthy. Can you trust somebody who kills embryos and puts them in vaccines? People such as these are capable of anything.

 

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See video here.

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See original video in Greek here.

 

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2. Elder Euthymios of Kapsala, Mount Athos

 

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One of the most respected elders on Mount Athos today, Elder Euthymios of Kapsala, a disciple of Saint Paisios, wrote a letter to an abbess, dated 20 June 2021:

The topic of the coronavirus is of course, at first glance, a medical matter, but it has become more of a political one (the politicians and the journalists speak more), it is also economic, and it has become a perfect means of enforcement and control. To be sure, it is also spiritual, since under its pretext our free will is abolished, while cells from an aborted embryo were used in the preparation of the vaccine

(Read entire letter here.) 

 

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3. Elder Savvas Agioritis (the Athonite)

 

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Elder Savvas, a graduate of the School of Dentistry and the School of Theology, at the University of Thessaloniki, said on 31 December 2020:

We must tell you about some facts which we have received relating to these famous vaccines against COVID which are now being administered in our country [Greece] – that they contain elements of aborted embryos and for certain this is a major crime which is to be condemned by
all of us pious Orthodox Christians, and someone who accepts to take these vaccines essentially consents to and agrees with this major crime. Because, for these vaccines to be made, some people were sacrificed. It does not matter that they were embryos, they were still people. Therefore, this is another serious reason for Christians to not proceed to take these vaccines.

 

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To watch the video via YouTube, click here.

 

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To watch the video via Brighteon, click here.

 

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On 24 January 2021 at the Holy Trinity Monastery, Edessa, Greece, Elder Savvas said the following during a sermon:

Because many ask me about the vaccine, I wanted to say this: the most fundamental reason we should not take it is that, for this vaccine to be made, either in the research stage, or testing stage or in the production stage, it has used humans, that is aborted embryos, which means they were murdered and their cells were taken. Whoever gets this vaccine, it is as if they accept (or rather not as if, but they do accept) this technique which is essentially murder, and they become an accomplice to this murder.

That is the main reason why one must not participate in this whole effort of the globalists, the Kabbalists, to impose the new order of things, because that is what the vaccine is aimed at. It is as if we are made to be computer terminals and then, with satellites, to be controlled. And these are not conspiracy theories – they are from their own texts. That is their ultimate goal. 

Needless to say, all these things are promoted by people who closed the churches and now supposedly are opening them with 25 people. While a parish can have fifty thousand, they let twenty-five people go inside the church. What a big opening that is! So, they are making fun
of us...
 

Therefore, we cannot trust these people who tell us that all this is for your health, but even more so, because by this, one participates in the murder of innocent beings. Since we say that we are against abortions (and of course we are), against the murder of these defenceless people, the embryos, we must never participate in a process that uses them.

Let us be optimistic and joyous, and all this great deception, the global deception will very quickly leave the world stage, with the prayer of Orthodox Christians and with the intercessions of the all-holy Theotokos, to whom let us constantly call upon, with the saints. 

Let us beg that all these terrible things, and a world war, and hunger, and all these things, do not happen. These will come of course, for our sins, but if there is repentance even at the last hour, God will take them away and they will be cancelled, or postponed and left for later. 

So, let us strive with repentance, with a proper life, to please God and thus weep like the Ninevites and attract the grace of God.

To our God be glory now and ever and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Through the prayers of our holy Fathers, Lord Jesus Christ our God, have mercy on us and save us. Amen. 

 

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Sermon in Greek: A Serious Ethical Issue with the Vaccines – the use of aborted embryos. Click here

 

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On 18 October 2021, Father Peter Heers had a three-part interview with Elder Savvas on the patristic attitude towards vaccines. Included in this discussion were the following topics:

1. The cell lines from murdered unborn babies used in the testing and production of the new-fashioned inoculations.

2. The stance of so-called Orthodox bioethicists with regard to the use of the cell lines in various medicines and elsewhere.

(Unfortunately, this interview has not been made available in English, but we understand that it will be ready soon.)

For those who understand Greek, see 3-part interview.

 

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For Part One click here

 

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For Part Two click here.

 

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For Part Three click here

 

In another video (included below), Elder Savvas relates the personal testimony, a confession, of a hieromonk who made the mistake of getting vaccinated. This hieromonk, who is under Archbishop Ieronymos of the Orthodox Church of Greece, tells of his experiences after receiving the first dose of the Pfizer vaccine. Although in Greek, the video includes English subtitles.

 

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See video here.

 

What do Orthodox hierarchs say about vaccines and aborted fetuses?

There are a number of Orthodox hierarchs who are openly opposed to the vaccines and denounce them, usually for two reasons. The first reason is, the COVID-19 vaccines cause major health issues and even death. The second reason is that they believe there is a connection between COVID-19 vaccines and the cells which come from aborted fetuses (fetal cell lines – FCLs). Some bishops mention both reasons while others mention only the second reason – i.e. fetal call lines (FCLs).

 

1. Bishop George of Canberra, Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia

 

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Bishop George of Canberra, Auxiliary Bishop, Australia-New Zealand Diocese, Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia, mentions both reasons in his pastoral letter dated 5 August 2021: 

There are some Orthodox hierarchs who accept taking the vaccines, even though they contain fetal cells, or are derived from fetal cells, thereby being a direct product of abortion. In good conscience, as an Orthodox Christian, I cannot agree with this view and cannot accept it…. People also need to know that many of those who are getting vaccinated are dying or experiencing severe side effects. We must be aware of what we are doing.

(Read his entire pastoral letter here.) 

 

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2. Bishop Siluan of the Serbian Orthodox Church of Australia and New Zealand

 

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Bishop Siluan of the Serbian Orthodox Church of Australia and New Zealand only mentions the connection between COVID-19 vaccines and the cells which come from aborted fetuses in his pastoral letter dated 12 August 2021: 

At the same time, it should be known that there are certain vaccines that are morally problematic for Christians, such as those developed from the cells of aborted fetuses that I personally, as a Bishop, cannot accept. 

(Read his entire pastoral letter here.) 

 

In another pastoral letter dated 10 September 2021, Bishop Siluan wrote:

Orthodox Christians, for example, have a moral issue accepting vaccines that have been developed from cell lines that were obtained from tissues harvested from aborted fetuses. The issue of ethical concerns for such vaccines was raised last year by some of the major Christian jurisdictions in Australia, such as the Roman Catholic, the Anglican and Greek Orthodox Archdioceses. 

Therefore, the moral concerns of Christians should be taken into consideration, as they are not simply subjective views, but derive from the fundamental positions and core beliefs of the Church.

(Read his entire pastoral letter here.)

 

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3. Metropolitan Neophytos of Morphou

 

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On the official website of the Holy Metropolis of Morphou, under ‘Various Documents’, there is an article titled, “Shocking Facts about the Origin of Fetal Cell Lines and their Relationship to Vaccines” written by two pious Orthodox doctors named Eustathios Mitsopoulos and Demetrios Galanakis.

One needs to question why Metropolitan Neophytos himself has not made any recent comments on this topic, either on his website or on social media. It is likely that past videos on this topic have been deleted from social media. It should also be noted that the Archbishop of Cyprus has pressured the Metropolitan to cease speaking about the vaccines. The Metropolitan wrote an epistle in response to the Archbishop’s request (See below).

The fact that Metropolitan Neophytos has made the aforementioned article available on the official website of his diocese clearly tells us that he is against vaccines due to the use of fetal cell lines at some stage in their production. In other words, the Metropolitan’s beliefs on this topic would be entirely in line with what Doctors Mitsopoulos and Galanakis are saying.

This excellent article is rather long, but worth reading in its entirety. However, in order to receive the most benefit from the information contained therein, the reader needs to have a better understanding of fetal cell lines, embryonic stem cell research, abortions, etc. Therefore the article by the pious doctors is provided further down, following the informative sections on these topics.

Below, then, is Metropolitan Neophytos’s response to being asked to keep silent about the vaccines.

 

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Let us not divide people into the vaccinated and unvaccinated

Date: 9th September, 2021

During the Holy Synod of the Church of Cyprus, which met today, Thursday, 9 September 2021, under the chairmanship of His Beatitude Archbishop Chrysostomos of Cyprus, among other things, we discussed the issue of dealing with the coronavirus pandemic and vaccinations.

Both I and the other Hierarchs agreed with the proposal of His Beatitude that, when we disagree with a decision of the majority of the Holy Synod’s members, we will express our disagreement only within the Holy Synod.

Publicly, however, we will remain silent, provided that we are not challenged to respond, and we will publicly express our agreement to the decisions of the majority of the members of the Holy Synod, where we agree.

In addition, I suggested to the President of the Republic that he should ensure that the Republic of Cyprus acquires the new drugs against the coronavirus, the special monoclonal antibodies, in the hope that this particular recommendation will be implemented as soon as possible, so that our compatriots will have the opportunity to receive these drugs.

These drugs are already used in America and in many European countries, and are reported to have high levels of effectiveness against the coronavirus, reaching 85% to 90%.

In conclusion, I would like us to be very careful not to divide people into the vaccinated and unvaccinated.

His Beatitude and the President are here to serve all the people, for the vaccinated and the unvaccinated, and I remain Metropolitan for all, vaccinated and unvaccinated, repeating what I preached at the Vigil in honour of St. Mamantos on September 2, 2021: “The unvaccinated should pray for the vaccinated and the vaccinated for the unvaccinated. Each one is to support the other, and this kindness will attract the grace of the Holy Spirit, our Christ, and our heavenly Father.”

On the issue of vaccination with the vaccines that are circulating against Covid-19 coronavirus, I remain steadfast in my views that I have expressed publicly, always with discretion, even if I am in the minority.

“There is a time to be silent and a time to speak.”

With best wishes,

Morphou Neophytos

Evrychou, September 9, 2021

PS. Our talks and sermons will continue without reference to vaccination.

(For the original source in Greek, click here.)

As mentioned above, the article titled, Shocking Facts about the Origin of Fetal Cell Lines and their Relationship to Vaccines” will be included towards the end of the current Part 11.

 

4. Metropolitan Seraphim of Kythira, Orthodox Church of Greece

 

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Metropolitan Seraphim of Kythira & Antikythera, Greece, was arrested on 21st March 2020 in Greece. His crime? He was accused of opening the doors of the temple to everyone wanting to attend, and of having the bell rung before the service. From the beginning, His Eminence has condemned restrictions placed on the Greek Orthodox Church by her own bishops and the godless authorities.

On Sunday, 27 December 2020, after Vespers, Metropolitan Seraphim of Kythira boldly said the following in his sermon regarding COVID-19 vaccines being prepared with the products of abortions (FCLs): 

I wanted to tell you, my dear brothers and sisters, some news from neighbouring Italy. This news comes from Orthodox Christians there who communicate with me with much love. They expressed great concern that the new vaccines available from today, and the use of which has commenced by our governing agencies, are made and prepared with the products of abortions. 

This is very terrible my brothers and sisters. The Christians of the West, the Papists, are troubled and asked their leader, the Pope, and he reassured them and said: “It is so, but we will accept them [the vaccines] out of economy for the health of the people.” But this is a big mistake! Of course, he is outside the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church and we cannot count on his opinion. We, the Orthodox, cannot accept such a thing. 

Some scientists and doctors who have no piety, inner cultivation and learning according to God, say that contamination can occur from Holy Communion. They are afraid and wanted to stop Holy Communion until the vaccine came out. However, my dear brothers and sisters, they should have been concerned, instead, about the contamination which will come when this substance, which is derived from murdered embryos, passes into our bodies. 

 

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See the video of the above section here. 

 

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See the video of entire sermon here 

 

Even though unrelated to our topic on aborted fetuses and COVID-19 vaccines, the following quote has been included so that the faithful can see the type of hierarch His Eminence, Metropolitan Seraphim, is. He is courageous and brave, and fears God rather than his fellow hierarchs and the government. This hierarch is an excellent example of exactly what Christ means when He says: “You will know them by their fruits” (Matthew 7:16). 

In a March 2021 sermon at the Church of the Mother of God in Myrtidiotissa, Metropolitan Seraphim noted that: 

Just as we do not close hospitals and sanatoriums, we must not close churches. Indeed, who has calculated the spiritual damage that believers endure when they live outside the Divine Eucharist? Who can measure this? This ordeal cannot be overcome if we go in this unorthodox way, closing the churches and waiting for things to change. That is why we appeal to all those in charge and to the Holy Synod to speed up the procedures so that the Temples of God can operate with certain measures that can be taken. 

Metropolitan Seraphim has been quoted as saying the COVID epidemic has intensified due to the closure of churches. His Eminence has also publicly stated, 

“I, as your Bishop, tell you that I will not be vaccinated.” 

(Read the article here.)  

 

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Fetal cell lines and human embryonic stem cells: What’s the difference?

Before proceeding, we need to understand the difference between the cells taken from aborted fetuses (fetal cell lines – FCLs) and human embryonic stem cells.  Before changes to the definitions of embryo and fetus were made, there was no difference between the two. In all stages of pregnancy - from conception to birth - the baby was called either an “embryo” or a “fetus”. The change of definitions, that occurred during the 1950s and 60s, was a preparation to justify abortion. In 1973, the pro-abortionists’ dreams and efforts were realised when the US Supreme Court made the decision to legalise abortion nationwide. This is why, at times, the reader may get confused when the words embryo or embryonic are sometimes used instead of the modern redefined words “fetus” or “fetal”.

 

Fetal cell lines – cells made from aborted fetuses. These cells are taken from a fetus with developed organs, usually from 8 weeks after conception and onwards. Scientists, in gruesome fashion, take the cells from a developed organ of the fetus. That is why we read that fetal cell lines come from the kidney (HEK-293), from the retina (MRC-5 and PER.C6), or from the lungs (WI-38), etc. These cells can be multiplied and grown indefinitely.

On the excellent website, A Voice for Truth, which I highly recommended, we read the following under the heading, “What is an abortion-derived fetal cell line?”:

The development of a fetal cell line is an intentional process from beginning to end. To be clear, it’s an intentional process engaged in by the abortionist, Planned Parenthood clinics, scientists and tissue procurement companies – NOT the pregnant mothers.

This intentional process requires the baby to be dissected within minutes of the abortion to ensure the harvested tissue is “live.” The live tissue is quickly prepared and sent to the pre-arranged scientist or research center. Scientists then isolate the cells and create the fetal cell line.

Normal cells have a finite lifespan. However, fetal cell lines take a normal cell and change it so that the cells can be multiplied and grown indefinitely. These cells are considered “immortal.” These immortal cell lines are then used for scientific and medical research as well as in the food and cosmetic industries.

The fact that fetal cell lines are used for scientific and medical research, as well as in the food and cosmetic industries, is a very serious issue and there is an urgent need to examine this in more detail. This will hopefully be covered in a separate section.

 

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As mentioned, there are many cell lines that come from aborted fetuses (fetal cell lines – FCLs) that have been developed and sold for scientific and medical research. One of the FCLs that we frequently hear about is HEK-293. HEK stands for Human Embryonic Kidney and was derived from a kidney from a few-months’ old female baby aborted in the Netherlands in 1973. This well-known cell line has been used for nearly fifty years and is still multiplying and growing. Because of this ongoing multiplication and growth, fetal cell lines are sold for scientific and medical research. This explains why the cell line HEK-293, is still being sold and used after so many decades.

It should be noted that the research and development of fetal cell lines began before the redefinition of the terms fetus and embryo, and this would explain why, even though they are called fetal cell lines, the HEK-293 has the word “embryonic” in its name.

Another barbaric scientific practice that we hear about is embryonic stem cell research. Even though this is unrelated to our topic of FCLs and vaccines, it is important that Orthodox Christians also understand what embryonic stem cell research is and what are embryonic stem cells.

 

Embryonic stem cells are cells taken from an embryo very early on in its development, when the embryo is made up of only a few cells, microscopic in total size, and no organs have yet formed; scientists call this the ‘zygote’. To be more specific, these stem cells are taken from a fertilised egg in the first week after conception, before it has implanted in the uterus. It should be emphasised that destroying a one-week-old embryo, supposedly for the good of mankind, is unethical and sinful because, according to the Orthodox Church, life begins at the time of conception (fertilisation). More information about this is provided further on in this article. 

Stem cells, through scientific techniques, can be developed into different types of cells. This interests the scientists quite a lot because they can control this process for their studies and potentially use the cells for medical therapy. In theory, an embryonic stem cell, because it has not yet matured, can become any cell in the body such as a brain cell, a skin cell, a muscle cell, a stomach cell, a heart cell, etc. To date, the use of embryonic stem cells for medical therapy has produced no successful new treatments for patients. In the United States, for example, no embryonic stem cell research has produced any FDA-approved clinical treatments.   

Stem cells do not have to come from embryos at all, they can come from children and adults. There are stem cells in everyone. This is what makes embryonic stem cell research an abomination.

One can ask, why then do scientific and medical researchers prefer embryonic stem cells rather than stem cells from children and adults? The answer to this is that obtaining stem cells from children and adults is more difficult and expensive, whereas obtaining stem cells from embryos is easy and cheap. The best place to find one week old embryos is from in-vitro fertilisation (IVF) clinics. In order for a woman to have a greater chance of success in becoming pregnant, the IVF clinics produce many embryos from which the more viable ones are chosen. The embryos that the IVF clinics do not use are labelled as “leftover” or “unwanted”. These are the embryos that are sold to scientific and medical researchers. We will learn more about embryonic stem cell research in the next section.

 

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Do COVID-19 vaccines use abortion-derived fetal cell lines?

Let us return to the topic of fetal cell lines (FCLs) because they are related to the COVID-19 vaccines, in that FCLs are used in some way for all COVID-19 vaccines.

The pharmaceutical and research companies, in order to soften the controversial nature of using aborted fetuses in the research and development of fetal cell lines, deceptively tell us that only one aborted fetus was used for each successful fetal cell line. They even go as far as to say that fetal cell lines are not used at all in their vaccines or are only used in the very early stages. However, this is horribly false. The website A Voice For Truth exposes the truth about this matter.

We read under the heading, “History of the abortion-derived fetal cell lines”:

These cell lines are not the first (or the last) created and used for vaccines and the broader scientific community. Read more about the history of fetal cell lines that companies like Pfizer want to suppress in the White Paper, “Abortion, the Human Fetal Cell Industry, and Vaccines.”
You may also be interested in the Pfizer whistleblower who spoke to Project Veritas about the company’s intentional suppression of its use of fetal cell lines in the COVID-19 vaccine.

 

(To access the information booklet: Abortion, the Human Fetal Cell Industry, and Vaccines – click here.) 

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We also read under the heading, “COVID-19 vaccines that used abortion-derived fetal cell lines”:

The four most widely used COVID-19 vaccines across the globe all used abortion-derived fetal cell lines in their research, development, production and/or testing. Those vaccines are:

1. AstraZeneca/Oxford, authorized in 124 countries

2. Janssen/Johnson & Johnson, authorized in 75 countries

3. Moderna, authorized in 76 countries

4. Pfizer/BioNTech, authorized in 103 countries

AstraZeneca/Oxford and Janssen/Johnson & Johnson used abortion-derived fetal cell lines in all phases of their vaccine production; in the research, development, production, and testing.

Moderna and Pfizer/BioNTech used abortion-derived fetal cell lines in the testing of their COVID-19 vaccines.

 

Also under the heading, “Fetal cell lines used for COVID-19 vaccines” we read:

Three different abortion-derived fetal cell lines were used in the four COVID-19 vaccines: HEK-293, PER.C6, and MRC-5.

AstraZeneca/Oxford used two fetal cell lines in the making of it’s vaccine: HEK-293 and MRC-5.

Janssen/Johnson & Johnson used PER.C6.

Moderna used HEK-293.

Pfizer/BioNTech used HEK-293T/17 (a derivative of HEK-293T, which is a derivative of HEK-293).

There are some excellent informative one-page leaflets on the A Voice for Truth website under the tab “Infographics”. These infographics will be used throughout this section. The first one we will use is titled “COVID-19 Vaccines Made Using Abortion-Derived Fetal Cells” which confirms that FCLs are, in fact, used.

 

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(To read the full sized infographic, click here.)

 

Therefore, there is no doubt that all COVID-19 vaccines available used fetal cell lines in the testing stage at the very least, and some companies used fetal cell lines (FCLs) in one or more of their other stages (research, development, production).

The following infographic, “U.S. Vaccines Made Using Abortion-derived Fetal Cells”, though unrelated to COVID-19 vaccines, does reveal the extent of the use of fetal cell lines for other vaccines.

 

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(To read the full sized infographic, click here.)

 

How many aborted fetuses are used to make a fetal cell line?

The pharmaceutical and research companies try their utmost to avoid the public finding out that many aborted fetuses/children are used in the research and development of fetal cell lines. They tell us that only one aborted fetus was used for each successful fetal cell line. However, this also is horribly false. The website A Voice For Truth again exposes the truth:

We read under the heading, “History of the abortion-derived fetal cell lines”:

The research and development to make a successful fetal cell line historically takes many abortions, not just the one that is ultimately used for the final product. These three fetal cell lines represent untold numbers of abortions.

 

The following infographic titled “The Children Sacrificed for Vaccine Development – 60 Years of Abortion for Vaccines” is very important and, at the same time, absolutely shocking.

 

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(To read the full sized infographic, click here.)

 

Who is the “Modern Godfather of Vaccines” and why is he glad to go to hell?  

Also on this most informative website, there is a powerful 4-minute video that presents, amongst many other revealing things, a very explosive admission (under oath) by Dr. Stanley Plotkin on 11 January 2018. Dr. Plotkin is considered the “Modern Godfather of Vaccines”. He admitted the inclusion of:

… aborted fetal tissue in the development of vaccines and the fact that it is actually part of the ingredients of vaccines.

 

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See the video testimony here

 

For more information about Dr. Stanley Plotkin, read the following infographic titled “Dr. Stanley Plotkin: Modern Godfather of Vaccines”. This possessed and unrepentant doctor said that he is glad to go to hell for using the tissues of aborted fetuses.

 

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(To read the full sized infographic, click here.)

 

Let us take the opportunity here to once more recommend A Voice for Truth as an excellent website that should be shared with as many people as possible.

 

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(Click here to access the site.) 

 

Again, it should be emphasised that pharmaceutical companies are deceptively leading people to believe that the vaccines are free of FCLs. These companies are afraid they would lose significant profits if the public knew the truth and refused to receive COVID-19 vaccines. The following is a powerful example of this unethical practice.

 

What did the Pfizer insider reveal about FCLs and the Pfizer vaccine program?

 

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Melissa Strickler was a manufacturing quality auditor for Pfizer at a facility in MacPherson, Kansas, USA. She has worked for Pfizer for almost ten years.

On 6 October 2021, “Project Veritas” released a video interview with Ms. Strickler, who leaked internal emails that show corporate executives telling staff at Pfizer to be secretive about the use of human fetal tissue in laboratory testing of the Pfizer mRNA COVID Vaccine.

The following is some of what Ms Strickler said during the interview:

What was troubling to me was that they were wanting to keep it under wraps, they didn’t really want the information out there that they were using the HEK cells to do the study. They’re being so deceptive in their emails, it’s almost like it is in the final vaccine. They’re just being really deceptive and they’re being careful with their words, then it made me not trust it

They don’t want to stir up a mess, they don’t want to deal with people who are upset because I think people can use religious exemptions for it, and they don’t want that. I think they want nobody to have an excuse to not get it

I was sickened and traumatised from a lot of the things I realised were going on, it really upset me and it shook me. I could not believe that they were blacking out windows down in our manufacturing rooms

The interviewer asks why they would want to do that; she replies:

Well, I was wondering that as well, especially because they’re rooms that there’s no need for that, like they tell us “Make sure you can be seen at all times,” for integrity purposes, you know, and so when I saw that they were blacking out windows in offices and unoccupied rooms, I thought it was odd so I raised it to someone in AQ (Aseptic Quality) …. He said “Well, the FDA is coming 

This is about informed consent, on injecting something inside of you from a company that’s called it an experimental vaccine…

I am a little anxious what they’ll [i.e. Pfizer] do or what they’ll say but it needs to be seen by the people because they’re trying to get this to kids, and if they’re being this deceptive about it, I don’t feel comfortable being silent, while they’re trying to get it to babies who can’t talk...

What do they think they’re doing to us, why do they think that they can just say this to us and make us take something when they’re not even honest about what they’re doing or what’s in it?...

When asked why she did not go to congress with her information, Ms Strickler replied:

I’ve spoken to lawyers, I’ve spoken to people, and this is what I was told to do, was to trust Project Veritas… Whistleblower lawyers told me that some things are better leaked to the media than doing it the other way. I think this just needs to get out there so people can realise we’re being deceived… They said if I do the route with them, the lawyers, it could be three years before this comes out and that was from someone in the DOJ [Department of Justice]… He advised that I bring this to you guys because it could take years and if they’re trying to get this to kids soon, there’s just not going to be enough time.

 

The following are some quotes from the leaked internal emails:

Vanessa Gelman, Pfizer Senior Director of Worldwide Research, wrote:

From the perspective of corporate affairs, we want to avoid having the information on fetal cells floating out there… The risk of communicating this right now outweighs any potential benefit we could see, particularly with general members of the public who may take this information and use it in ways we may not want out there. We have not received any questions from policy makers or media on this issue in the last few weeks, so we want to avoid raising this if possible.

In another email thread, Gelman doubled down on being secretive about this information:

We have been trying as much as possible to not mention the fetal cell lines… One or more cell lines with an origin that can be traced back to human fetal tissue has been used in laboratory tests associated with the vaccine program

Philip Dormitzer, Pfizer Chief Scientific Officer admits that aborted fetal tissue is used in the company’s vaccine program, but advises employees to just stick with Pfizer’s polished narrative which omits any mention of aborted fetal tissue, in order to avoid any issues with the public:

HEK293T cells, used for the IVE assay, are ultimately derived from an aborted fetus. On the other hand, the Vatican doctrinal committee has confirmed that they consider it acceptable for Pro-Life believers to be immunized. Pfizer’s official statement couches [indirectly communicates] the answer well and is what should be provided in response to an outside inquiry.

 

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Watch the interview here

 

In an article that appeared on the media website “Gript” on 16 October 2021, Ms. Strickler explains why she leaked the emails: 

I’m not an anti-vaxxer. I’m fully vaccinated. I was simply waiting until my company started producing the vaccines to see if anything seemed sketchy or out of place in the production of this shot. Sadly, right away there was lying, deceit and manipulation within my plant [facility]. I’m just one employee who has information out of many. I’m the first because I simply have nothing to lose but my job, in my eyes. I pray that you understand that I am not coming forward falsely; that I fully plan to make sure the public has transparency and honesty in their medical decisions.

(Read the full article here.) 

 

Attacks and Suppression:

Three days after the above interview, Melissa Strickler was terminated.

An article on Liberty Loft titled “Pfizer whistleblower who exposed use of aborted babies in jab fired” writes:

The latest video release is a recorded voicemail from K.J. Wigglesworth, of Pfizer’s security corporate office, who said: “We’ve been advised to let you know that you are not, under any circumstances, to return to work. Your termination is being processed at the current time.”

Wigglesworth said that the vice president and site manager at the MacPherson facility, Ian MacKellar, made the decision to terminate Strickler.

(Read the article here.) 

 

Unfortunately, many clergymen of the Orthodox Church have proven to be dedicated and trustworthy representatives of the pharmaceutical companies. Why would these Orthodox clergymen support, advise and even coerce Orthodox Christians to receive COVID vaccines that are connected to FCLs, with some even containing them? God will reveal the reason for this abomination soon.

In conclusion, because all COVID-19 vaccines were produced using FCLs, either for testing purposes (all of the available COVID-19 vaccines fit into this category) or to produce the final product that is injected into the arm (only some of the COVID vaccines fit into this category), it would be unthinkable that anyone would believe that there is no moral problem with receiving these vaccines. This will be looked at in more detail further on.

 

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What do some Orthodox Churches say about FCLs and embryonic stem cells?

The following statements from the five Orthodox Churches mentioned below, openly and absolutely condemn any use of human embryonic stem cells for either research or medical therapy. Even though these statements are mainly about embryonic stem cells, this condemnation would also apply to the use of cells which come from aborted fetuses (Fetal Cell Lines – FCLs). The reason for this is that both involve the destruction of embryos.

 

1. The Russian Orthodox Church

 

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In 2000, the Russian Orthodox Church produced a document on the social life of the Russian Orthodox Church. The name of this document is “Bases of the Social Concept of the Russian Orthodox Church”. In Section XII. 7., the document defines the absolute unacceptability of medicines prepared using fetuses that were aborted. This document was prepared and released before COVID-19, but the following statement can still be applied to our topic on COVID-19 vaccines and the use of fetal cells for COVID-19 vaccine research and/or production:  

The Church believes it to be definitely unacceptable to use the methods of so-called fetal therapy, in which the human foetus on various stages of its development is aborted and used in attempts to treat various diseases and to “rejuvenate” an organism. Denouncing abortion as a cardinal sin, the Church cannot find any justification for it either, even if someone may possibly benefit from the destruction of a conceived human life. Contributing inevitably to ever wider spread and commercialization of abortion, this practice (even if it’s still hypothetical effectiveness could be proved scientifically) presents an example of glaring immorality and is criminal. 

(See the entire document here.)

 

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Contradictions, hypocrisy and silence

The above statement clearly says that under no condition is it permissible to use aborted fetuses in research or medications – even if it is to save lives. In other words, you cannot kill someone in order to save someone. Yet in May 2021, approximately 20 years later, the Sretenskii Theological Academy (one of the leading Orthodox higher education institutions in Moscow) held a conference addressing the bioethical concern about the use of cells derived from aborted fetal tissue in COVID-19 vaccines. It was decided that, in the absence of other alternatives, a person was allowed to take such a vaccine.

(Read the article here.)

In July 2021, the highest church authorities, such as Metropolitan Hilarion (Alfeyev) of the Moscow Patriarchate, urged believers to get vaccinated against COVID-19, saying those refusing the vaccine were committing “a sin for which they will have to atone throughout their lives”. (This was covered in Part Three, Example 1, of this article. To read it in full, click here.) 

We see that, although the Russian Orthodox Church in the year 2000 denounced the use of medicines prepared using fetuses that were aborted, we now see that they seem to have no concern that fetal cell lines (FCLs) are used in the research and/or production of all the available COVID mRNA vaccines. Furthermore, according to the Russian Orthodox Church, all the faithful must be vaccinated if they do not want to be considered horrible “sinners”. Why this change of heart? Presumably, the Church Fathers, Councils, and Holy Scriptures have not made a change in spiritual teaching.

 

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Pious resistance to pro-mass vaccination clergymen and authorities

It is important for readers to understand that when we say, “The Russian Church”, we are specifically referring to the majority of clergymen at the top level, which are complying fully with the official policies of the state. This does not seem to be the case with many of the Russian clergymen and faithful, who opposed these demonic policies. These are the humble and pious clergymen and laypeople who are not interested in power and in the glory of the world, but are interested only in God’s law and His glory. In an article titled “Covid-19 a Challenge for the Russian Symphony, which appeared on 19 August 2021 on the Berkely Center of Religion, Peace and World Affairs website, we read:

Many laypeople, priests, and even bishops refused to comply with the requirements of both civil and ecclesial authorities. In some Russian regions, bishops and local governors openly clashed with one another. 

(Read the article here.)

There were several clergymen who spoke out against those pandemic measures that were contradictory to the Orthodox way of life. They delivered sermons not only against these measures, but also against COVID-19 vaccines to their pious and devoted flocks.

One such sermon was given by Bishop Porphyry Shutov, abbot of the Solovetsky Monastery on 18 July 2021, and was published on the official website of the Monastery.  The sermon was a direct response to anti-Orthodox statements by the Russian Orthodox Church leaders that if people are not vaccinated, they will become guilty of the death of their loved ones, and they will need to repent for this sin for the rest of their lives.  The sermon quickly spread on the internet but, under pressure from the Moscow Patriarchate, was later removed from the website and YouTube.

Abbot Porphyry spoke about both the physical and spiritual dangers of the vaccines. He stated:

The vaccine is a genetically modified high-tech product. It contains RNA proteins. These agents integrate into the human genome*, change it, modify it, regulate it. The Christian who is responsible for his salvation must stop at this place. We all know what a genetically modified product is. … What is a genetically modified person, or, if you want, a person with a genetically modified genome? To what extent has the image of God remained intact in him? And who can guarantee that this interference did not cause irreversible damage to our image of God?

* Definition of genome: the entire genetic code of an organism: the inheritable traits of an organism which are stored in a full set of chromosomes.

(Read more of his sermon here.)

We referred to this confessor of the Orthodox Faith earlier in this article. (See here.) 

It is encouraging and hopeful to see that true faith has not left the hearts of pious Russian Orthodox Christians who, like the Orthodox Christians of past times, resist the evil in the world. Unfortunately, and with pain of heart, we see that this evil can also come from Orthodox clergymen themselves who have decided to serve the world rather than Christ, to the detriment of their souls.

 

2. The Greek Orthodox Church

The Bioethics Committee of the Church of Greece brings together clergy, and medical and legal experts to discuss bioethical issues, and provides its conclusions about these issues to the Holy Synod of the Greek Orthodox Church.

The Committee declared the following in a press release dated 14 December 2000 on “The Cloning of Embryonic Cells”:

Our Church expresses Her categorical opposition to the conduct of experiments on embryonic cells, since this implies the destruction not only of embryonic cells but of human embryos as well.

It further declares in the same Press Release that:

The effort, however, to improve life cannot involve the destruction of millions of human beings in an embryonic stage.

(Read the entire document here.) 

 

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The Bioethics Committee, in another press release dated 25 November 2003, discussed research on human embryos, and declared:

We, as Orthodox Christians, consider that human life begins at the very onset of conception… In this sense, we are against every technique that implies the destruction of embryos, no matter how promising it may be for the progress of health and medicine, and we consider it as ethically unacceptable.

(Read the entire document here.)

 

Contradictions, hypocrisy and silence

The Church of Greece rightly condemned the use of aborted fetal stem cells, yet only twenty years later, the same Holy Synod officially urged everyone to get vaccinated, going so far as to administer COVID-19 vaccinations outside parish churches as a means of encouraging more Orthodox Christians to receive the shots.

In a Greek news article appearing in “The Kathimerini” on 4th November 2021, the Church’s governing body is quoted as saying:

Responding to the surge in coronavirus cases, the Holy Synod, in addition to its written circulars and instructions, appeals to all its clergy, as well as to the faithful, that when they attend holy temples they fully observe all measures to protect from the spread of coronavirus disease and urges everyone to get vaccinated, according to the instructions of the medical community.

(Read the full article here.)

Further, some bishops mandated the COVID-19 vaccines for their clergymen, and even went as far as to threaten to suspend them without pay if they did not comply.

(Read more here.) 

It is interesting that the Holy Synod is silent about the use of fetal cell lines in the production and/or testing of the COVID-19 vaccines, even though in December 2000 they categorically opposed the use of embryonic cells, and again in November 2003 declared:

We are against every technique that implies the destruction of embryos, no matter how promising it may be for the progress of health and medicine, and we consider it as ethically unacceptable.

(Read the full article here.)

 

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Pious resistance to pro-mass vaccination clergymen and authorities

Although the Greek Orthodox Church’s leadership officially supports mass vaccination against COVID-19, several bishops, clergymen and laypeople strongly oppose it, and have shown their outrage through protests and rallies. It is encouraging and hopeful to see that the Orthodox Faith is still strongly rooted in the consciences of many of the Greek people. On the Politico website, an article of 20 July 2021 titled, “Science vs. religion as Greek priests lead the anti-vax movement” shows us a wonderful example of how the Church’s clergymen can correctly use their authority and the people’s trust in them, to truly and fearlessly guide their flocks. The article points out that:

For the Greek authorities, one of the major sources of opposition to lockdowns, mask-wearing, social distancing and vaccination is influential Greek clerics and the power they wield from the pulpit [i.e. preaching].

According to the article, the Greek government understands that the Greek Church has the power to influence the flock, so in an attempt to increase the vaccination numbers, government representatives met with the Holy Synod to try to engage the clergy in the vaccination campaign. This involved a campaign to send what they described as “more authority-friendly members of the clergy” to smaller Greek communities. In other words, the Greek government wanted to send clergymen, who are friendly and obedient to the authorities, no matter what anti-Christian policies they have, to smaller communities in Greece. In this case, the “authority-friendly” clergymen were advising Orthodox Christians to be obedient not only to the bishops, but also to the civil authorities who wanted all the faithful to be vaccinated.

The priest, Vasileios Voloudakis, οne of the most prominent critics of Coronavirus restrictions and vaccines in the Greek Church rightly stated, “They want to tell us, the priests, what to say…The religious leaders who accept this are mainly to blame. This priest has a great number of supporters who agree with his anti-coronavirus vaccine stance.

The article also acknowledges Metropolitan Seraphim of Kythira as “one of the country's most powerful and influential clerics,” who is quoted as saying:

Vaccines are a product of abortions…This product that comes from killed embryos will be injected into our bodies.

Glory to God for such strong and vocal leaders, and shame on the clergymen (bishops and priests) who betray their flocks by cooperating with the government to lead Orthodox Christians to obey anti-Christian practices.

(Read the whole article here.) 

 

3. The Romanian Orthodox Church

A section on the “Transplant of Organs” on the Official Site of the Romanian Patriarchate, lists mandatory principles, among others for proper, moral use of human organs and tissues. The document shows that the Church rejects the harvesting of aborted fetal cells for any purpose. To even consider such a thing, it would have to take place with the full consent of the preborn child-victim – which, of course, is impossible.

The Romanian Orthodox Church’s official statement on the transplant of organs states:

Because the extraction of organs implies the consent of the donor, extraction of tissues from an embryo is inconceivable given the fact that although alive, this one cannot give its consent. 

The Church cannot agree with the transplant of the embryoid tissues which involves the risk to affect the good health of the fetus...

(Read the entire document here.) 

 

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Contradictions, hypocrisy and silence

The above statement of the Romanian Orthodox Church condemns all medical work that involves the harvesting of cells from aborted fetuses. This statement would also apply to all of the COVID-19 vaccines, because the cells of aborted fetuses were used in the testing stage; and for some of them, it is used in other stages as well, including the production of the final vaccine product (i.e., what is injected into a person). So, what does the Romanian Church officially advise regarding COVID-19 vaccines? 

In May 2021, an article appearing on the “Transylvania Now” website titled, “The Romanian Orthodox Church encourages vaccination”, states:

The Romanian Orthodox Church is distancing itself from the statements of some anti-vaccination pastors and encouraging vaccination against COVID-19, the spokesman for the Romanian Patriarchate, Vasile Bănescu, recently declared. He has sharply criticized the anti-vaccination assertions of some clergymen, emphasizing that from the standpoint of the Romanian Orthodox Church, there is no conflict between science and faith… a great many believers and pastors have been vaccinated because they have realized that the coronavirus pandemic cannot be halted if people are not protected against the virus.

(Read the full article here.)

If there is “no conflict between science and faith”, why would the Romanian Orthodox Church officially reject the harvesting of aborted fetal cells for any purpose? Why would the Church have Bioethics committees? Does this mean that they now agree with whatever science says? The current stance of the Romanian Orthodox Church is very contradictory to what they stated some years ago:

The Church cannot agree with the transplant of the embryoid tissues which involves the risk to affect the good health of the fetus...

 

Pious resistance to pro-mass vaccination clergymen and authorities

Romania has Europe’s second-lowest vaccination rate and therefore, like Greece, the government tried to involve the Romanian Orthodox clergy in encouraging their flocks to be vaccinated. The secular authorities recognise the Romanian Orthodox Church’s strong influence over the people, particularly in rural areas. According to an article titled “Romanians look to church for deliverance from fourth virus wave”, which appeared on the Politico website on 3 July 2021, the deputy prime minister is quoted as saying:

There’s a component of society that pays much attention to the messages of the church and that’s why I wish for the church to be active in this campaign to promote our health.

(Read the full article here.) 

While the Romanian Patriarch, Daniel, urges people to make up their own minds and listen to doctors, many local clerics and some influential bishops openly denounced the COVID-19 vaccines.

One renowned Romanian clergyman who has publicly stated that he is against the COVID-19 vaccines is Teodosie Petrescu, Archbishop of Tomis. Archbishop Teodosie has repeatedly resisted COVID-19 government-imposed restrictions on religious events and has said about the vaccine: 

I don’t dare encourage anyone to get the vaccine… This is the only vaccine that has not been tested on animals and is being tested directly on humans; accidents have already happened.

(Read the full article here.) 

Another Romanian bishop, Ambrose of Giurgiu, on 14 October 2021 urged his flock not to be fooled by what they see on TV, and not to be scared:

Do not be afraid of Covid and do not rush to get vaccinated. Let all MPs, ministers and politicians be vaccinated first.

Bishop Ambrose is now under criminal investigation by the police for spreading “dangerous disinformation”. Read about it in the following articles:

An anti-vax sermon by the bishop of Giurgiu led to an investigation against him (Read the article here.) 

Romania opened a criminal case against Bishop Ambrose for preaching against vaccination (Read the article here.) 

Again we see that true faith is firmly rooted in the hearts of pious Orthodox Christians around the world, and that there are strong and faithful religious leaders who will bravely resist the evil in the world to protect their flocks. What can be said about the pro-mass vaccination clergy, except “Woe to them,” and what can be said about the clergy who are warning their flocks, except “Well done good and faithful shepherds of Christ, for great is your reward in Heaven!”

 

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4. The Orthodox Church of America - OCA

On 17 October 2001, the synod of the Orthodox Church of America issued a statement titled, “Embryonic Stem Cell Research in the Perspective of Orthodox Christianity.” The following are some extracts from that statement:

From the perspective of Orthodox Christianity, human life begins at conception (meaning fertilization with creation of the single-cell zygote). This conviction is grounded in the Biblical witness (e.g., Ps 139:13-16; Isaiah 49:1ff; Luke 1:41,44), as well as in the scientifically established fact that from conception there exists genetic uniqueness and cellular differentiation that, if the conceptus [fertilised egg] is allowed to develop normally, will produce a live human being. Human life is sacred from its very beginning

We cannot, however, condone [go along with] the manipulation of embryonic cells in any form for research purposes, including [cell] lines developed from destroyed embryos. Rather, we can only express dismay at the fact that the debate over this issue has avoided major considerations regarding the very meaning and value of human life…

Ever since the Holocaust the principle has been universally accepted by the scientific community that no experimentation should be undertaken on human subjects without the subject’s informed consent. Obviously, such consent cannot be granted by an embryo. Neither the mother nor anyone else has “proxy” rights in this regard over the life and well-being of a Child in utero [in the uterus] or in vitro [in a test tube, culture dish, or elsewhere outside of a mother]

In conclusion, we firmly reject any and all manipulation of human embryos for research purposes as inherently immoral and a fundamental violation of human life… and the view that an embryo is merely a clump of tissue and can therefore be aborted on demand with no moral consequences…

(Read the entire statement here.) 

 

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The pro-abortionists, pharmaceutical companies and medical schools believe that the embryo in the early stages is simply a ‘cell’, or ‘clusters of cells’ or ‘clumps of cells’ or ‘a mass of tissue’, which has not implanted in the mother’s uterus and therefore there is no pregnancy. This is how they justify the morning-after pill, oral contraception, and IUD contraception - all of which destroy the embryo through chemical means.

 

His Beatitude Metropolitan Tikhon designated 16 January 2022 as “Sanctity of Life Sunday”. This is to be observed in all parishes of the Orthodox Church in America.  The following is an extract from a statement that the Metopolitan released:

To the Clergy, Monastics, and Faithful of the Orthodox Church in America,

Dear Beloved Children in the Lord,

As we witness our society becoming increasingly polarized and divided, we approach the anniversary of one of the most bitter of these divisions: the legalization of abortion in the United States of America [in 1973]. We grieve on this anniversary for the many lives cut short, the emotional and psychological devastation done to so many women, the numerous wounded families, and the persistent hostility embittering our society.

The Orthodox Church continues to hold fast to its ancient belief that all human life, from conception in the womb to our very last moment, is sacred to God. For the Holy Scripture tells us that “God did not make death, and He does not delight in the death of the living. For He created all things that they might exist” (Wis 1:13–14). So we say, humbly but firmly, that the wilful destruction of a person in the womb is an evil act and a rejection of a gift of God.

(Read the entire statement here.) 

The Orthodox Church of America (OCA) has a long history of speaking out on pro-life issues. For many decades, the OCA Metropolitan would lead the annual March for Life in Washington, DC, and give a keynote address. Parishes of the Orthodox Church in America (OCA) would be directed by their hierarchs to add petitions for the unborn during an annual pro-life Sunday, and many parishes had ministries and financial collections dedicated toward pro-life ministries.  

 

Contradictions, hypocrisy and silence

Like other North American jurisdictions of the Orthodox Church, the OCA had already experienced divisions among their faithful in response to severe Covid measures in many of its dioceses. In some dioceses of the OCA, so strong were the responses against these restrictions on normal Orthodox parish life (such as the kissing of icons, getting a blessing from a priest, etc.), that one bishop issued a letter ordering the faithful not to seek out other parishes, in case the great loss of members wipes out whole parishes. (Read the letter here.)

Many hierarchs within the OCA remained silent when the vaccine mandates presented themselves. In sharp contrast to the many detailed public statements and epistles related to mandates during the initial Covid lockdowns from other Orthodox jurisdictions, OCA bishops issued almost no statements regarding the various Covid vaccines, their links to fetal cell lines (FCLs), or the contradiction between taking the vaccines and the OCA’s own 2001 Embryonic Stem Cell statement.  Perhaps they had forgotten!!

 

Pious resistance to pro-mass vaccination clergymen and authorities

At least one outspoken OCA hierarch stated that vaccine requirements imposed by the government would never forbid entry to the faithful to any parish within his diocese (Read the full story here). The timing of this statement was noteworthy, since it was made at a time when some hierarchs (notably in the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America) were already considering the option of excluding the unvaccinated from their parishes, and at least one parish in the northeastern United States had already begun to do so.

 

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5. Antiochian Orthodox Archdiocese of North America

On the official website of the Antiochian Orthodox Archdiocese of North America, there is an article by Father Mark Hodges titled, “Destructive Embryonic Stem Cell Research”.

Although not directly related to our topic of the link between COVID-19 vaccines and fetal cell lines (FCLs), this article presents the teachings of the Orthodox Church on conception, abortion, and the use of embryonic stem cells for the supposed good of mankind.

Father Mark also goes into some detail about IVF in the full article. I am not personally up to date with what our saints and elders say about IVF, and unfortunately, I do not have time to research this thoroughly. So, when the faithful come to this section in his article, please be aware that I do not necessarily agree or disagree with all that is said there.

Although long, the faithful should take the time to read this article because, unfortunately, many today do not properly understand these topics. Due to this inexcusable ignorance, we have come to the stage where many of the faithful are listening to Orthodox clergymen who are saying that, for health reasons, the faithful are permitted to be vaccinated with something that is connected to aborted fetuses, whether in the testing, development or manufacturing stages of the vaccine.

Here follow some extracts from the article by Father Mark Hodges.

 

Destructive Embryonic Stem Cell Research

The stem cell debate is about the value of human life at its beginning. Stem cells are “blank” cells which can become all 210 different kinds of human tissue. Researchers hope that someday these cells could provide cures for all kinds of serious diseases, even repairing vital organs. We have stem cells throughout our bodies, but they are most abundant in human embryos. Retrieving embryonic stem cells, however, requires killing those human beings...

 

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The position of the Orthodox Church on embryonic stem cell research is, “In light of the fact that Orthodox Christianity accepts the fact that human life begins at conception, the extraction of stem cells from embryos, which involves the wilful taking of human life — the embryo is human life and not just a clump of cells — is considered morally and ethically wrong in every instance.”

In this article, we will look at why the Orthodox Church has taken such a stand, how the Church has always stood uncompromisingly for the personhood of the human embryo, and what moral alternatives exist for stem cell research.

Legally, research on human embryos is allowed because of a faulty Supreme Court definition of “personhood” at “viability” (when a baby can lie outside his/her mother) as worthy of state interest for legal protection. In fact, the whole pro-abortion argument hinges on the lie that there is such a thing as human life which is less than a person, hence unworthy of legal protection. Conversely, Orthodox Christians affirm the image of God from the beginning of human life, and we do not say at any time of development that one human being is of less value or less of a person than another human being.

 

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The Church Condemns Abortion at Any Stage

Stem cells can be “harvested” from human embryos only by killing them, while the Church has always denounced any such killing and championed the sanctity of human life.

The earliest extra-biblical document we have, The Didache, commands, “Do not murder a child by abortion,” and warns that “the Way of Death is filled with people who are … murderers of children and abortionists of God’s creatures” (5:1-2).

 

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The Epistle of Barnabas, another very early document, was equally clear: “You shall not destroy your conceptions before they are brought forth.” Both call the embryo a “child.”

St. Clement of Alexandria, in the third century, used Luke 1:41 (where John the Baptist leaped in Elizabeth’s womb) to prove that an embryo is a living person. He calls the earliest conceived embryos “human beings who are given birth by Divine Providence,” and he condemns “those who use abortifacient [abortion-inducing] medicines …, causing the outright destruction, together with the fetus, of the whole human race.”

 

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Before we continue with Father Mark Hodges article, let us look at the Gospel reading for this holy event and a short explanation of this icon.

Even from the earliest days, the Holy Orthodox Church has maintained that life begins at the moment of conception and, for the entire pregnancy, the embryo is a human being.  The Gospel itself teaches us this:

When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. (Luke 1:41) 

This event happened when John the Forerunner’s mother, Saint Elizabeth, was six months pregnant and the Theotokos had conceived Christ not long before her visit to Elizabeth’s house. This also confirms that in all stages of pregnancy the unborn is not only a human being, but also a spiritual being.

In Canon II of Saint Basil’s First Canonical Epistle, we read:

Let her that gets an abortion undergo ten years’ penance, whether the embryo were perfectly formed, or not.

Today, the penance for abortion is much less, but this does not mean that the sin of abortion nowadays is less serious than it was during Saint Basil’s times (4th Century).

 

Let us continue with Father Mark’s article.

St. John Chrysostom called abortion “murder before birth,” exhorting, “Why do you abuse the gift of God, and fight with His laws … and make the chamber of procreation a chamber for murder, and arm the woman that was given for childbearing for slaughter?” So also so many others, in fact all Fathers and all Councils of the Church, unanimously condemn abortion at any stage of development, acknowledging that life begins at conception. The basis of the Church’s fervent opposition to abortion was that the preborn are God-created human beings. The distinguishing mark of the Christian position was concern for the fetus as a person.

 

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If what makes us pious Orthodox Christians is our concern for the embryo as a person, would that mean that Orthodox clergymen are not Christians because they are pushing for mass vaccination, regardless of the connection of COVID-19 vaccines to fetal cell lines (FCLs)? And what can we say about those who viciously refuse to give religious exemptions to the pious faithful (the new Maccabees) whose consciences do not allow them to participate in the murder of innocent unborn children? To answer these questions, you will need to apply simple logic. Does 2 + 2 = 4? Apply the same simple logic to the two questions and you will get the answers.

 

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Returning to the article:

It is sometimes said that the Bible is silent on abortion, but that’s not true. While the word “abortion” isn’t in the Bible, the New Testament forbids pharmakeia, the use of potions or poisons which cause abortion. Galatians 5:20 condemns pharmakeia along with fornication, impurity, licentiousness (promiscuity) “and the like.” The context makes clear that abortion is what is being prohibited. Pharmakeia is one of the wicked deeds of Babylon, deceiving the nations (Rev. 18:23). It is an activity of unrepentant evildoers (Rev. 9:21).

Today the Church continues to condemn abortion, no matter how soon after conception. Protopresbyter John Meyendorff, of blessed memory, insisted: “The fact that [an abortion] takes place at an initial stage of the human life process … does not change the nature of the act of abortion being killing, and as such a very grave sin. Because killing is evil…”

 

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The Twenty-third Clergy-Lay Congress of the Greek Archdiocese of North and South America (1976) issued this statement: “The Orthodox Church has a definite, formal, and intended attitude toward abortion. It condemns all procedures intending to abort the embryo or fetus, whether by surgical or medical means. The Orthodox Church brands abortion as murder, that is, the premeditated termination of the life of a human being. Decisions of the Supreme Court and State Legislatures by which abortion is allowed, with or without restrictions, should be viewed by practicing Christians as an affront [insult] to their beliefs in the sanctity of life.”

 

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The Church Teaches Life Begins at Conception

The Church has always resoundly affirmed that human life — and She does not distinguish human life from human personhood — begins at conception. This is most obvious in our Feasts celebrating the conception of Christ at Annunciation, the conception of the Theotokos, and the conception of John the Baptist, all of which have hymns proclaiming the personhood of Jesus, Mary, and John.

 

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At John’s conception, the Church proclaims: “From a barren womb buds forth today the fruit of prayer, John the Forerunner … For, behold, the Herald of repentance begins to take flesh in his mother’s womb.”

 

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The idea that what is conceived is a “potential” entity that sometime later becomes a person is completely foreign and antithetical [contradictory] to Orthodox Tradition. John himself was conceived, not a “conceptus” [fertilised egg] with only potential for personhood. The whole amazement of the Annunciation is that in Mary’s womb was a Person, not just a “fertilized egg.

At the Feast of the Annunciation, the Church sings about Mary: “She conceived You, the pre-eternal God, who was pleased to become man for the salvation of our souls.” We marvel with the angels, that “He who cannot be contained is contained in a womb.” This is the mystery of the Christian Faith, and it teaches us that the womb holds persons, not things...

 

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St. Basil the Great repeatedly affirmed, “Those who give potions for the destruction of the child conceived in the womb are murderers … A woman who deliberately destroys a fetus is answerable for murder.

Significantly, St. Gregory of Nyssa affirmed that the fetus possessed a soul from conception: “There is no question about that which is bred in the uterus … The point of commencement of existence is one and the same for body and soul.” St. Gregory considers that there is no difference, in terms of human personhood, between a new-born and the developing baby in
the womb
.

 

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Saint Gregory writes that an infant has “no advantage over the embryo in the womb except that he has seen the air.” He takes great pains to prove that from the baby’s earliest beginning, the child is not only alive but endowed with a personal, human soul. “No one with good sense would imagine that the origin of the soul is later and younger than the formation of the bodies … Soul and body have one and the same beginning … We understand that a common transition into being takes place for the compound constituted from both soul and body. The one does not go before, nor the other come later…”

Holy Scripture calls pregnancy — from the moment of conception — “to be with child” (Isaiah 7:14). King David wrote, “You formed my inward parts, You knit me together in my mother’s womb … You know me right well; my frame was not hidden from You, when I was being made in secret … Your eyes beheld my unformed substance” (Ps. 139:13-17). At the earliest stage of development, not yet visibly recognizable in their “unformed substance,” the tiniest individuals are the subjects of God’s love as persons. Clearly, the baby in the womb is of equal value to human life outside the womb.

 

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ANY abortifacient [abortion-inducing drugs] — no matter how immediately applied after conception — is absolutely condemned by holy Scripture, the Fathers, and the Councils of the Church. Categories of development (“zygote,” “embryo,” “fetus”) are modern inventions for more technical description of the developing child, not Church-sanctioned divisions in stages of value. (Even the Latin word “fetus” simply means “unborn baby,” at any stage after conception.) The Church unanimously affirms human life starts at the very beginning, conception, not at a later stage. Modern medicine affirms what Orthodoxy has always known: Dr. Jerome Lyeume, geneticist who discovered the genetic basis for Downs Syndrome, writes, “Life has a very long history, but each human being has a very neat beginning: the moment of conception.”

 

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At no time in gestation is there a change, going from being “lifeless” to being “alive.” Dr. E. Blechschmidt explains, “A human being does not become a human being, but rather is a human being from the instant of its fertilization…

We affirm that life begins at conception.

 

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In this icon, we see on the bottom left the remains of an aborted baby. Christ holds, in His hand, the soul of this aborted baby.

 

Embryonic Stem Cell Research Kills

“Harvesting” stem cells kills human embryos. Though the hope is to help people someday, if we harm others in the process, we have done wrong. The Church opposes embryonic stem cell research because there is no way, at least today, to take stem cells from human embryos — pre-born children — without killing them. Dr. J. Wilke of Life Issues Institute writes, “You can’t have it both ways. You can’t profess to be pro-life and support experimentation on these tiny children that will result in their deaths. As physicians we first pledge to do no harm. [Embryonic stem cell research] flies in the face of a doctor’s primary responsibility.” 

 

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Some say the possible benefits justify destructive embryonic stem cell research. This “noble use” argument is simple: the end justifies the means. But the intentional harm of a human being for the benefit of another is wrong. Stem cell research’s goal may be to heal, but countless human beings have to be killed first…

Others, including President Bush, agree that killing humans for experimentation is wrong, but feel it should be allowed on embryos “already slated to die,” such as victims of abortion or “spare” human embryos frozen in fertility clinics. This is faulty thinking, since two wrongs don’t make a right. In cases of abortion, it is wrong to benefit from an immoral act. This is a universally accepted ethical principle. In cases of conceived human beings frozen in fertility clinics, again the Church opposes the killing of these little ones for experimentation. Human life is human life, whether conceived in the fallopian tubes or in a petri dish. Pro-life couples going through in-vitro fertilization can (and Orthodox faithful do) specify that no “extras” be conceived than will be implanted in the mother.

Deacon Dr. Mark Studebaker explains, “Each one is conceived with the hope that it will become implanted in the mother’s womb and survive, even though some often do not. This is no different than what happens in a natural setting through a couple with normal fertility.”

The reason I have included the above two paragraphs about IVF is because the faithful need to know what happens in IVF clinics, and that this is where the medical and pharmaceutical researchers purchase frozen embryos for their research. As for whether IVF is right or wrong, I would prefer to wait until I study the teachings of the saints and the holy elders and eldresses on this topic. If anyone has any such teachings, I would appreciate receiving them.

Let us return to Father Mark’s article:

Thanks be to God, there are stem cells that can be used for research from countless sources other than embryos, some of which are beginning to prove more valuable than embryonic stem cells.

 

Alternatives to Embryonic Stem Cells

The Coalition of Americans for Research Ethics (including former Surgeon General C. Everett Koop) has pointed out that real, viable alternatives exist. Dr. David Prentice comments, “there are several excellent alternatives to embryos, and they are actually better potential sources of stem cells for numerous reasons. The best sources are from our own organs … Another excellent source is cord blood ” Indeed, Wesley J. Smith reports that stem cells from umbilical cord blood have restored the immune systems of children whose cancer had previously destroyed their abilities to fight infection and disease.

 

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In England, research has shown adult stem cells can help stroke victims regain movement, senses and understanding. They also show that the adult cells were more effective than cells from aborted babies. The Institute of Psychiatry in London and a biotechnology company showed that transplanted adult stem cells made their way to whichever area of the damaged brain needed repair. The movement of adult stem cells to the damaged area of the brain differs from the behaviour of fetal stem cells, which they say remain in one place when transplanted.

Besides umbilical cord stem cells, there are many kinds of adult stem cells, all of which can be used in research without harming anyone, and which are already proven to have dramatic healing effects. The Toronto Globe and Mail reported that a young woman rendered paraplegic by a car accident can move her toes and legs after injection of her own immune-system cells into her severed spinal cord. The New England Journal of Medicine reports that several legally blind people can now see more clearly after their corneas were reconstructed with adult corneal stem cells. In the last year, adult neural stem cells have been converted into heart, liver, muscle and blood cells. The Associated Press concluded that such findings “may eliminate the ethical dilemma blocking stem-cell studies that use human fetal tissues.”

 

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The National Institute for Neurological Disorders and Stroke has confirmed that patients’ own bone marrow stem cells can be directed to generate nerve cells for brain repair. “The studies suggest that bone marrow may be a readily available source of neural cells with potential for treating such neurological disorders as Parkinson’s disease and traumatic brain injury … Bone marrow cells taken from a patient’s own body would not be rejected by the body’s immune system.” Use of bone marrow stem cells to repair damaged bone and cartilage is already in human clinical trials at Osiris Therapeutics in Baltimore and elsewhere.

 

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The New England Journal of Medicine reports on successful efforts by Italian and Russian researchers to repair “large bone defects” using these cells. The Los Angeles Times has reported that The Robert Wood Johnson Medical School in New Jersey found stem cells from adult bone marrow can convert into neurons quickly and can be grown in almost unlimited supply. Experiments prove these cells can be successfully transplanted into the spinal cord and brain, where they survive and connect to other neurons. The Washington Post published reports that bone marrow cells “might provide a nearly limit-less supply of replacement neurons for patients with Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease and spinal cord injuries.” There is also some evidence that adult stem cells may be easier “to manage” than embryonic and fetal stem cells.

Skin and fat have been discovered as other sources of stem cells, which could lead to cures for diabetes and other degenerative illnesses by providing new cells to replace damaged or dead ones.

Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia created bone cells out of stem cells harvested from abdominal fat. In another study, scientists grew cartilage cells from fat stem cells taken from liposuction samples.

The British Medical Journal reports that even people recently deceased can provide stem cells: “Early results suggest that ductal tissue taken from human cadavers can be grown in culture to form functioning (pancreatic) islet cells. Such a source of tissue … could prove better than relying on fetal tissue, and may even lead eventually to autologous pancreatic transplants.” The American Diabetes Association reports that fifteen people with juvenile diabetes became “insulin free” after adult pancreatic islet cell transplants; nine still need no insulin injections. Researchers at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies grew neural cells from human tissue donated after death from people up to 72 years old.

The list of proven alternatives to embryonic stem cells goes on. Science columnist E. Marshall writes: “Once thought to be less versatile than (embryonic) stem cells because they have already made a commitment to become particular cell types, these (adult stem) cells are now turning out to have greater than expected capabilities. What’s more, they pose fewer ethical problems …

Do No Harm, the Coalition of Americans for Research Ethics (http://www.stemcellresear...), has a wealth of articles about the alternatives to embryonic stem cells on their website, plus links to other sources.

 

Stem Cells from Embryos Have Problems

Embryo stem cells are beginning to prove more harmful than helpful. Wesley J. Smith explains, “Embryonic stem cells seem more active, but that may actually make them less desirable for use in human medical therapy since this aspect of their biology may be impossible to control and could lead to embryonic stem cell therapy causing tumours.”

Cybercast News Service reports that scientists in the United States have been injecting cells from aborted babies into the brains of Parkinson’s patients, but it was reported in early March that the experiment was being abandoned after “absolutely devastating” side-effects were observed. Lead researcher Dr. Helen Hodges concluded, “We expect that [adult] stem cells will prove far safer and more flexible for repair of brain damage than primary fetal cells.” The Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York came to similar conclusions, as did the Institute for Stem Cell Research in Milan, Italy.

 

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Embryonic stem cells are unstable, making them harder to manage. They can fail to differentiate into the needed cells, and can even cause harmful tumors. They can be rejected by the patient (who has to take drugs just to attempt accepting them), and they can transmit diseases. Michel Levesque, director of neuro-functional surgery at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, confirms that using adult stem cells, “we don’t have to harvest 12 to 15 fetuses, we don’t have to give immunosuppressant therapy, and we don’t have to worry about viral disease transmission.”

It is obvious who benefits most from destructive embryonic stem cell experimentation. The market for cell lines and tissue cultures made nearly half a billion dollars for corporations worldwide in 1996 alone, and the market has since sky-rocketed. Fr. Andrew Morbey writes, “There is no need at all to use fetuses for stem cell research! So why use them? Who profits? Those with fetuses and fetal tissue certainly do. Abortion clinics and fertility clinics will make a bundle from the ‘by-products’ of their ‘services’ — probably even more than they make from abortions and in-vitro fertilization

Quindlen, an ardent pro-abortionist, argues that embryonic stem cell research should be tax-funded because it will change people’s attitude toward abortion.

Destructive embryo experimentation, she writes, “might bring a certain long-overdue relativism to discussions of abortion across the board …”

 

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Father Mark then concludes with the following:

To Orthodox Christians, the issue is clear. We defend the life of pre-born children, from the earliest, smallest and most fragile stages of development. We oppose killing innocent human life for experimentation, or for any other reason. As citizens, we call upon our government to sponsor only research which does not harm human life, “research we all can live with.” As Orthodox faithful, alongside our holy Fathers, our Councils and our Holy Scriptures, we continue and maintain Holy Tradition unchanged, which affirms that the miracle of life begins at conception.

Read the entire article here.

 

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Contradictions, hypocrisy and silence

After such a strong denunciation of the use of stem cells taken from aborted fetuses (embryonic stem cells) during the debate in the early 2000s, one would think that the Antiochian Orthodox Church would speak out just as strongly against the use of fetal cell lines (FCLs) in the COVID-19 vaccines because in both cases, there is a destruction of embryos. Instead, the Antiochian Church was silent on this issue. In a Statement of the Antiochian Orthodox Patriarchate on COVID-19 vaccines on 8th February 2021, we read:

After scientists have prepared a set of Covid-19 vaccines and in reviewing various medical reports and consulting with specialists, the Church considers that the matter of vaccination is not the specialty of the field of theological and spiritual studies, but rather specific to the field of medical sciences and its authorities. The decision regarding taking the vaccine is a personal decision. Every faithful has the right to make this decision in consultation with his or her doctor.

(Read the full statement here.) 

The above statement is illogical because on the one hand, the Antiochian Church condemned the use of embryonic stem cells, but on the other hand, it cannot condemn the use of fetal cell lines in COVID-19 vaccines because (supposedly) it “is not the specialty of the field of theological and spiritual studies, but rather specific to the field of medical sciences and its authorities.” In both cases, there is a destruction of embryos, which most certainly is a matter that the Church has the authority to deal with.

Although not outrightly mandating the COVID-19 vaccines, the Antiochian Orthodox Church still encourages its faithful to receive it. Further in the abovementioned document we read:

There is no doubt that all preventive health measures and vaccinations are beneficial to our physical safety. However, we must not overlook the importance of our spiritual safety…

In addition to this, Patriarch John X (Yazigi) of the Antiochian Orthodox Church gratefully received a shipment of the Russian Sputnik V vaccine through the blessing of Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia, as humanitarian aid to the faithful in Lebanon.

(Read his letter of gratitude here.)

Such gratitude from this Orthodox primate is alarming and hypocritical in view of the Antiochian Church’s stance against the use of embryonic stem cells in the early 2000s. The Sputnik V vaccine uses fetal cell lines (specifically, HEK293 cells) in all three stages of its creation: the design and development stage, the production stage and in the confirmatory lab tests. (See the description here.)

Father Stylianos Karpathiou, a well-known Greek bioethicist, also confirms this. (See the reference here.)

It is difficult to understand how the Antiochian Orthodox Church urges its faithful not to overlook the importance of their spiritual safety, as we read above, while at the same time blessing the acceptance of a vaccine made using murdered baby cells – the very practice which they condemned so strongly in the early 2000s. Would this not be destructive to the soul?

Let us revisit one very important paragraph of the Antiochian Church’s article on stem cell research. It states:

The position of the Orthodox Church on embryonic stem cell research is, “In light of the fact that Orthodox Christianity accepts the fact that human life begins at conception, the extraction of stem cells from embryos, which involves the wilful taking of human life — the embryo is human life and not just a clump of cells — is considered morally and ethically wrong in every instance.”

Further to this, they declare:

We oppose killing innocent human life for experimentation, or for any other reason.

In light of all we have read above, it seems the Antiochian Church is saying that they strongly oppose the killing of innocent human life for any reason, but a COVID-19 vaccine is exempt from the category of “any reason”!

 

Pious resistance to pro-mass vaccination clergymen and authorities 

We could not find any resistance to pro-mass vaccination policies within the ranks of the clergy and the faithful in the Antiochian Orthodox Church. This does not mean it does not exist, we were merely unable to find anything about this.  

 

Are there Orthodox clergymen that have rejected Christ and worship a new god?

With so many bishops and priests being pro-mass vaccination, the faithful can be tempted to fall into despair by believing that the Orthodox Church has completely fallen away from the truth. But the faithful should be aware that these thoughts are demonic, and that their purpose is to drive people into schism, apostasy or hopelessness. In the history of our Church, there have always been times where the situation was so bad that it seemed the Church was ceasing to be Orthodox (i.e., of the correct Faith), but God did not allow this to happen, and He never will.

Again it must be emphasised, that the soul-destroying ignorance of the lives of saints is one of the main reasons the faithful fall into these horrific temptations. Why horrific? What is worse than someone leaving the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church after being assured by Christ, the Apostles and the holy Fathers that not even all the demonic powers of hell will be able to destroy the Church? Doubting Christ's words shows unbelief, and can be considered slander. When people doubt or deny the words of Christ, they are saying that, even though He is God, Christ does not have the power to know that His Church will never be destroyed. This is undoubtedly slanderous.

On this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it. (Matt. 16:18)

The faithful should keep this in mind. They also need to know that there are many bishops and clergymen who “have not bowed the knee to Baal.” (Baal was chief of the Canaanite gods.)

I have reserved for Myself seven thousand men who have not bowed the knee to Baal. 
(Romans 11:4)

How can it be said that Orthodox clergymen and many laypeople are bowing down to another god? To answer this question, we need to be reminded of what our Lord and God and Saviour Jesus Christ says about Himself:

I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life. (John 8:12)

Yet, for the last few years, we have not been hearing this important and reassuring message from the Orthodox clergy (apart from a minority). Instead, we are hearing another message, about an alternative “light”. We rarely hear from these Orthodox clergymen that the faithful need to turn to Christ, His Holy Mother and the saints for help, protection, healing, guidance, etc. Instead we hear, in the official statements and sermons of these Covidists, continual references to being obedient to governments, the medical establishments, and of course, above all, to themselves.

We also hear from the Covidists, the continual condemnation of faithful Christians who refuse to listen to this narrative, because they prefer to exercise their God-given right to choose what goes into their bodies. For decades, we have been hearing the pro-abortionists loudly squawking the message, “A woman has the right to do what she wants with her body,” regardless of whether this means killing her own child. Now that people who do not want to be vaccinated are correctly using the same principle, the powerful of this world are acting like wild and dangerous animals.

I will provide two examples below of the “new god”, but before I do this, I strongly advise the faithful to read these examples after much prayer and spiritual reading (the Holy Bible, the holy Fathers and the lives of saints). It is wise to be spiritually prepared because there is a danger that these blasphemous statements can significantly affect our souls. The golden rule is that we should not read blasphemous and heretical writings at all. However, we learn from the history of the Church that when the faithful were in danger of falling away from the Holy Orthodox Faith, it was important that blasphemies and heresies were exposed, in detail, to the faithful.

We are living in a time when the Church is being overrun by wolves in sheep’s clothing, that is, blasphemers and heretics, and this is why it is important that the clergy, who are responsible before God for the faithful, need to expose all falsehood (regardless of whether these falsehoods come from fellow Orthodox clergymen), using the teachings of the Holy Gospel, the holy Fathers and elders, the lives of saints and the holy canons.

These clergymen are referred to as wolves in sheep’s clothing. However, it would probably be better to say that, apart from some Orthodox clergymen and monastics that appear to be holy and wise, the majority of the Covidists took off their sheep’s clothing two years ago. Only a blind fool cannot see that the Covidists are not only unbelievers within the Orthodox Church, but also of the same spirit with those who have clearly shown that they are evil enemies of Christ and His Holy Church. We frequently read this in the lives of saints, and it is there that we learn how to deal with these blasphemers – through our spiritual life, prayer, spiritual reading, humility and repentance, speaking the truth with humility and without fear or cowardice, and above all, Holy Communion and confession. This is nothing new – so we should not despair. This is what the saints did, and this is what we too must do.

The example of the Canadian truckers is embarrassing, not for them but for us. They are putting their livelihoods in jeopardy. They could go to jail. They might lose their children and other legal rights. Yet, they are standing up for what they believe, and this is mostly on a worldly level.

But we, as Orthodox Christians who have the fullness of the truth, have not driven our spiritual trucks (i.e. the confession of Orthodoxy) to block the bridges that have become a means of allowing heresy and compromise into the Church. These bridges have been created by the tyrants within the Orthodox Church who want to take away, not only our freedoms, but above all, our Orthodoxy and salvation. For when they forbid the faithful to venerate the holy cross, icons and holy relics, when they insist we wear masks in church, and when they close the churches because the enemies of the Church asked them to (while leaving brothels, abortion clinics and marijuana shops open), then it is time to shout out the famous words of the Blessed and Ever-memorable Metropolitan Augoustinos of Florina, Greece:

Out with the old clergy, and in with the new clergy! 

In other words, out with the clergy who are impious, unbelievers, heretical and without fear of God, and in with the clergy who are pious, faithful, right-believing and God-fearing!

 

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Now for the two examples:

 

Example 1: The light at the end of the tunnel

In Part Four we read that an Orthodox archbishop said something which shocked many. And when I say many, I mean many pious Orthodox Christians - I certainly do not mean those “Orthodox Christians” who are unmoved by such statements or who simply remain silent when these types of blasphemies are uttered in public.

Speaking at a press conference on 26 May 2021, he said:

I would like to encourage all the people, it does not matter if they are Greek or not, Christians or not, Muslims or whatever, please get vaccinated. Don’t hesitate, take the decision and act. It’s not a matter that we have to protect our life or our health, we have to protect our society, we have to protect our country. The only solution that we have to get rid of the pandemic, the only light that we have to see at the end of the tunnel is to get vaccinated.

 

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People may wonder how anyone can dare to say that such a supposedly warm and responsible-sounding statement is blasphemous. But let us look at this warm and fuzzy statement more closely. In many of our Orthodox services, the clergy read prayers that refer to Christ as the Physician of our souls and bodies. Throughout the history of the Orthodox Church, pious Orthodox Christians ran to Christ, His Holy Mother and His saints for help and healing during a variety of afflictions and sicknesses, including epidemics. If you carefully read the underlined sentence in the quote above, you will see that there are two parts that are absolutely unacceptable to those who confess to be true Orthodox Christians, whether clergy or laypeople. These are: “the only solution” and “the only light”.

 

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The entire section in Part 4 can be read here. The faithful should re-read this short section because it is important to continually remind ourselves that several hierarchs of the Orthodox Church sound more like those belonging to the New Age movement. The following from Britannica clearly demonstrates that the New Age movement has infiltrated the Orthodox Church. 

New Age movement: a movement that spread through the occult and metaphysical religious communities in the 1970s and ʾ80s. It looked forward to a “New Age” of love and light and offered a foretaste of the coming era through personal transformation and healing.

(Source - click here.)

Isn’t it shocking that, besides the fact that the Covidists refer to the COVID-19 vaccines as the “only light” that can save the world from the virus, they also say that receiving the COVID-19 vaccine is an act of love?  And furthermore, that whoever refuses to get vaccinated does not have love for their fellow man?  The Covidists’ references to light and love fit well into Britannica's definition of the New Age movement: “It looked forward to a “New Age” of love and light and offered a foretaste of the coming era through personal transformation and healing.” Perhaps the Covidists should also be labelled “The New Age Clergymen of the Orthodox Church.”

If Father Seraphim Rose were alive today, he would undoubtedly use the above example in a revised edition of his book, Orthodoxy and the Religion of the Future” in the section titled The “New Christianity”.

 

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(To purchase this book, click here.) 

 

Before proceeding to Example 2, it should be noted that according to an article titled “Archbishop Makarios of Australia tests positive for COVID-19” in the Greek Herald dated 5 January 2022, the Archbishop, although fully vaccinated, contracted the Omicron variant (which many experts say is similar to a mild flu). Even though he saw that the COVID-19 vaccine did not protect him or others from contracting one of the COVID-19 variants, which he repeatedly said it would, he continues to urge people to be vaccinated because, in his words, there are “no dogmatic, canonical and ecclesiastical reasons not to vaccinate someone.” 

(See the full article here.)

Even though the Archbishop is a bioethicist, his statement claiming that there are “no dogmatic, canonical and ecclesiastical reasons not to vaccinate someone” is baffling. It ignores the fact that there is a definite bioethical issue with the use of fetal cell lines (FCLs) as they are used in the development of ALL the COVID-19 vaccines. What makes this more confusing is the fact that, over a year earlier, on 20 August 2020, Archbishop Makarios, together with two leaders of heterodox Christian churches in Australia, signed a statement to Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, regarding the COVID-19 vaccine and the use of cell line HEK-293. (HEK Cells are derived from human embryonic kidney cells grown in tissue culture taken from an aborted female fetus in 1973). When this statement was first released, Orthodox Christians rejoiced at the Archbishop’s stance against the use of fetal cell lines (FCLs) in COVID-19 vaccines. Not having personally read his statement at the time, it was overwhelming to see the enthusiasm of so many people who informed me of it. Now, however, his statement that there are “no dogmatic, canonical and ecclesiastical reasons not to vaccinate someone,” leaves pious Orthodox Christians legitimately bewildered. 

The faithful can familiarise themselves with the Archbishop’s joint statement here, while keeping the following questions in mind: What exactly did the Archbishop and the heterodox church leaders say in their letter to Prime Minster Scott Morrison? Did they truly admit that fetal cell lines (FCLs) are used in the development of the COVID-19 vaccines? Furthermore, did they advise that people should not accept them because the way they were developed is morally and ethically wrong? In other words, is the destroying of lives to save the lives of others morally and ethically acceptable? If this is what they wrote in their letter (and considering the Archbishop has become a great supporter of these vaccines), would that mean that he has changed his mind? This will be examined in the section dedicated to the pious and Orthodox priest, Father Stylianos Karpathiou, who is an eminent and renowned bioethicist and has spoken and written on this topic extensively. 

 

Example 2: May light shine in this darkness

When we were first sent the image below, we thought it was a meme - something that was funny and meant to make a point.

 

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But when we visited the website of the National Council of Churches in the USA, we were shocked to discover that it was, in fact, real and not a joke! Sadly, many Orthodox Churches are members of this heretical National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA.

The vaccine syringe is shamelessly portrayed as the “light” in the darkness, before a background of lit candles. The lighting of candles in church represents a Christian’s prayers offered in faith. The implication here is that we should have faith in the vaccine. Adding to this blasphemy, the words of our Saviour regarding being the Light of the world have been used as a basis for the tagline to promote vaccination. In essence, this image is saying that Christ is no longer the Light and Hope of the world but, instead, the new light and hope of the world is the COVID-19 vaccine. 

It is unbelievable that, to the best of our knowledge, no Orthodox members of this heretical National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA protested that Christ, Who is the true Light of the world, has been replaced by COVID-19 vaccines (which, incidentally, are connected to fetal cell lines (FCLs) and are the cause of a large number of vaccine injuries and deaths).

Also, we have not heard any condemnation of this blasphemy from those Orthodox Churches that are not part of this organisation. Nor have we heard anyone condemn the Orthodox clergymen who are part of this organisation and have remained silent or, worse still, believe that the vaccine is the light of the world.

 

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Does the silence of the clergy ever help the Church?

It can be said that there is a lot of demonic silence in the Orthodox Church, and this soul-destroying silence has been going on for years. It first began with the heresy of Ecumenism (raging for the last 100 years and getting worse) and now we have the new heresy of Covidism (raging for the last two years with no signs of repentance). What can be certain is that we will all give word on the Day of Judgment for this silence - this includes myself because we all fall short of defending Orthodoxy, whether out of fear, or out of indifference, or because we are stubborn and fanatical supporters of the heresy. Each person has to examine themselves and see which shoe fits.

After periods of heresy, the Ecumenical Councils were more lenient towards those who fell into heresy out of fear, but they were stricter towards those who fell into heresy out of indifference, and especially towards those who were supporters of the heresy. If they repented during these Councils, they were forgiven and at times given a penance. Many of the clergy were allowed to resume their positions for the sake of Church unity. However, those who stubbornly remained in heresy were defrocked and anathematised. Even after this, the Church awaited their repentance and, if they repented, the anathemas were lifted. (For more on this, see here.)

 

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It is important to note that many Orthodox priests, in essence, do not believe in the heresy of Covidism but out of fear they follow the COVID rules of their tyrannical bishops and/or governments. Perhaps there are bishops who, though not tyrannical, reluctantly follow the COVID rules because they are fearful of their governments or even their own synods. In other words, these bishops remain silent while the holy canons and dogmas of the Church are trampled on daily. There is a need for repentance and to publicly admit that our silence and obedience were absolutely wrong. Our lack of resistance and protest has caused immeasurable damage to the Orthodox Church. To this day, there are many who became so scandalised by the Covidists that they have not regained their faith, and some have even stopped going to church.

Father George Calciu, a Romanian priest who lived during the worst times of Communism, clearly explains during an interview how compromise does not save the Church, but rather damages it. It is strongly recommended that the faithful read this short interview because, not only does Father George speak in a powerful and discerning way, but the compromises under Communism are similar to the compromises made by many Orthodox clergymen during this COVID period. (See the full interview here.) 

 

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When reading this quote, the faithful could miss (as I did) the deeper meaning of what Father George is trying to say. At first it may seem that Father George is advising the clergy who compromised with the communists to repent and admit to their flocks that they were wrong. However, after several readings of this quote, I finally understood what Father George was trying to say. The key words are that the clergy “do not have the courage to speak out”. In other words, the clergy remained silent or compromised to such a level that later they did not have the humility to admit their very serious mistakes which caused the loss of many souls. Of course, there were also clergymen who did not speak out because they whole-heartedly believed in what the communists were doing.

What happened in Romania during the communist period is similar to what has happened in all the Orthodox Churches over the last two years. There are clergymen who remained silent and there were those who compromised. Then there were those who whole-heartedly believed in the heresy of Covidism. We especially see the similarity with Romania in that the Covidists do not have the humility to admit what they did was wrong. They cannot acknowledge that many got sick and died from the COVID-19 vaccines due to their silence or compromise - the worst offenders being those who insisted/forced a large number of Orthodox Christians to be vaccinated.

The following quote by Martin Luther King Jr. is an embarrassment to those Orthodox clergymen who think that there is nothing wrong with remaining silent. Even the heterodox and unbelievers know that this is unquestionably wrong!

 

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Furthermore, it is astounding that there are so many people who are willing to believe in lies and resist any attempt to help them see the truth. This resistance to the truth was embarrassingly obvious even to non-religious people such as Mark Twain.

 

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Christ said:

I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. (John 14:6)

And let us never forget these immortal words that no one else has ever said:

I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life. (John 8:12)

Also in the Orthodox Nicene Creed, we read that Christ is referred to as God and Light:

And in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the Only-begotten, begotten of the Father before all ages; Light of Light, true God of true God; begotten, not made; being of one essence with the Father; by Whom all things were made;

After reading the above examples, one will no longer think it unbelievable that, in the future, many Orthodox clergymen, monastics and laypeople will accept the final deception, will deny Christ and worship the Antichrist instead. We are told in the holy Scriptures and the writings of the holy Fathers that the Antichrist will be an evil man. However, because he will perform spectacular miracles by the power of Satan, and offer a desperate world economic and medical solutions, many people will reject Christ as their Lord and God and Saviour in order to follow this new and final self-proclaimed “god.” When we hear continually that the vaccines are “the only light at the end of the tunnel” and “the only solution”, is it so difficult to believe that people would recognise a demonic and powerful human as god?

The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness. (2 Thessalonians 2:9-12)

Yes, from the outside the current situation seems hopeless because we mainly hear the voices of the proud and powerful pro-mass vaccination bishops and several of their spiritually blind, docile and obedient clergy. But Christ has promised us that He will be with us until the end of time. Christ is our hope! Christ is our strength! Christ is our life! Christ is our healing! Christ is our light! Christ is our salvation!

 

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Are other clergymen against COVID vaccines due to their connection with FCLs?  

We will conclude this section with three other pious clergymen and end with Metropolitan Neophytos of Morphou (as promised earlier). These highly respected fathers are clearly against COVID-19 vaccines due to their connection with fetal cell lines (FCLs).

 

1. Priest Stylianos Karpathiou – Holy Archdiocese of Athens, Greece

 

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Father Stylianos Karpathiou is a graduate of the School of Theology and Medical School of the University of Athens. He completed postgraduate studies at the Sorbonne in Paris, from which he received his Masters Degree. He received his doctorate in Bioethics from the University of Athens with the thesis, “The History of the Zygote and In Vitro Fertilisation”. Father Stylianos works as a doctor in Greece, and his specific medical practice and expertise is in the field of Psychiatry and neuropsychology. He participates in many conferences and workshops, and has written both theological and medical books. As a clergyman, Father Stylianos serves in the Holy Archdiocese of Athens. He is married and is the father of seven children. 

 

Selections from the First Open Epistle to the Synod of Greece by Priest Stylianos Karpathiou

Date: 15 January 2021

For the most well-known vaccines for COVID-19, the pharmaceutical companies used human embryonic cells (HEK293T cells) in order to test whether, indeed, the expression of the coronavirus [spike] protein was successful.

 

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Specifically, the two pharmaceutical companies, Moderna and Pfizer/BioNTech, whose vaccines have been approved in Greece, used the cell line HEK-293 at the stage of confirmatory lab tests.

AstraZeneca, cooperating together with Sputnik V, and [separately] Johnson and Johnson’s Janssen, have all used the cell line HEK-293 in all three stages: I. Design & Development II. Production and III. Confirmatory Lab Tests [i.e. Testing]

It is obvious that what is being introduced is a great bioethical issue because the development of this vaccine, and any other vaccine which utilises a technology based on the HEK-293 cell line or other human [fetal] cell lines (for example WI-38 and MRC-5), has, as the precondition, abortion.

The Orthodox Church of Christ through four Ecumenical Councils (3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th) recognises man as perfect from the moment of conception.

 

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The Standing Synod of Greece consists of the Archbishop of Athens and all Greece together with twelve bishops.

 

The Standing Holy Synod of Greece [consisting of the Archbishop and twelve elected bishops], after its meetings, during the 12th and 13th January 2021, made an announcement that:

 The COVID-19 vaccines that are currently used in our country do not require the use of cultivating embryonic [fetal] cells for their production. 

 

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[Please note that at the conclusion of Father Stylianos’ article, there will be some comments regarding the Standing Synod of Greece’s announcement (or rather, the Synod’s lie).]

On the contrary to the above claims, the truth is that the COVID-19 vaccines, which are currently being used in our country [Greece], were made using the human embryonic kidney 293 cell line (HEK-293), which is derived from human embryonic cells that were taken from the kidneys of a healthy female embryo. This particular embryo was “'legally terminated”, i.e. it was aborted, according to Netherlands law, in the year 1973, at the Alex Van der Eb Lab in Leiden, the Netherlands.

 

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According to the announcement, 

“the choice of being vaccinated is not so much a theological or ecclesiastical matter, but primarily a medical-scientific one.”   

On the contrary, every medical act and action, in order for it to be godly and without blemish, needs to respect the human being from the moment of conception and, more generally, to be in the letter and the spirit of the Gospel. For this reason, the choice of being vaccinated is primarily a theological and ecclesiastical matter, and the acceptance of vaccination, considering the foundation on which the production of these particular vaccines were based [aborted fetal cell use], constitutes a fall from the correct Faith and life.

For the original source in Greek, click here.

 

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In Orthodox Wiki we read:

The Holy Synod of Greece is the highest governing body of the Church of Greece with supreme authority vested in the synod of all the diocesan bishops under the presidency of the Archbishop of Athens and all Greece. A Standing Synod that consists of the Primate and twelve bishops, each serving for one term on a rotating basis, handles details of administration.

The Standing Synod of Greece uncanonically made important decisions during the COVID period without giving the opportunity for all diocesan bishops in Greece to express their views and to vote (there are approximately eighty bishops in total). Decisions such as mask-wearing, restricted numbers in churches and the closing of churches were all made without consulting the entire synod.  It should be noted that only a few bishops protested these uncanonical decisions. Similar things happened in other Orthodox Churches around the world: the opportunity to vote was not given to all the bishops, as is the case for important matters. 

The announcement mentioned above, by the Standing Synod of Greece, was an outright lie. Some may say that perhaps it was made in ignorance of medical matters. But this cannot be true. These bishops had, at their disposal, many doctors including several clergymen with medical backgrounds (Father Stylianos Karpathiou being one of them) who warned them that the COVID-19 vaccines that are being used in Greece “were made using the human embryonic kidney 293 cell line (HEK-293), which is derived from human embryonic cells.”

As Father Geoffrey Korz from All Saints of North America Church Archdiocese of Canada said:

It should be mentioned that the bishops:

(a) made very bold statements about the medical veracity of the vaccines, claiming knowledge which neither they nor the medical researchers had at that time, and 

(b) certain Synods spoke with a precise level of certainty about a medical research topic – a level of certainty with which no Synod would ever dare to speak on any other topic outside their level of spiritual or canonical expertise, such as mechanical data, engineering research, etc.

These Synods were very much caught up in the spirit of the times: their statements were neither spiritual, nor based on “medical research” – just political enthusiasm.

Apart from this, we have to ask ourselves, how is it that non-medical pious Orthodox Christians were able to research the topic on the internet and recognise that fetal cell lines (FCLs) are indeed connected to the COVID-19 vaccines? While on the other hand, Orthodox hierarchs, who like to boast about how intelligent and well-educated they are, got it so wrong. Either they did not bother to examine the information available, including the warnings of the holy elders, or they have other agendas. Whatever the reason, they used their authority as bishops to coerce and encourage millions of Orthodox Christians to be vaccinated.

The COVID-19 narrative is crumbling worldwide. There has been a great deal of information coming out lately about COVID-19 vaccines and their connection to FCLs, as well as about the high number of vaccine injuries and deaths. Yet, tragically, these hierarchs (who have become wise in their own eyes) have not repented publicly for their gross mistakes. Instead, they continue to remain blind to the truth, or worse still, they deliberately distort the truth – whatever the reason, they will give word on the Day of Judgment, as will all those who have compromised or remained silent during the COVID-19 plandemic.

 

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How the hierarchs came to this stage will be covered later in the article, but for the time being, it is suffice to say (and painful to admit) that it is becoming more and more obvious that we need to follow the aforementioned advice of the saints and elders, that is, we must not listen to clergymen who are teaching and advising things which are contrary to the Holy Tradition of the Orthodox Church. In Part 7 we covered this in detail, using many examples and quotes from the saints. It is strongly advised that the faithful re-read this soul-saving section. Below are just a few examples from Part 7.

 

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What is the Greek Archbishop of Australia's position on COVID-19 vaccines and FCLs?

As mentioned above in Example 1: The light at the end of the tunnel, we need to examine the Archbishop’s statements because they come across as contradictory. On the one hand, he advises all to get vaccinated without any apparent concern for which of the COVID-19 vaccines have a connection to fetal cell lines (FCLs). However, earlier on, he signed a joint statement (dated 20 August 2020) with other church leaders to the Prime Minister of Australia, pointing out that there is great concern because the AstraZeneca vaccine makes use of the Fetal Cell Line HEK-293, and that this vaccine will be as near to mandatory as possible in Australia.

We were therefore disappointed to learn that of the 167 candidate vaccines for COVID-19 identified by the World Health Organisation, 29 of which are already in clinical evaluation, the Commonwealth [of Australia] has chosen to throw its lot in with one that makes use of a cell‐line (HEK293) cultured from an electively aborted human foetus. It has been reported that if the vaccine is adopted for use in Australia it will be ‘mandatory’ or ‘as near to mandatory as possible’; at the very least it can be expected that there will be enormous social and political pressure upon people to use it. 

This is well said and what we would expect from an Orthodox archbishop. The statement then goes on to describe how different people will react to the use of fetal cell lines in the production of the vaccine. The statement divides the people into three groups:

  1. Some will have no ethical problem with using tissue from electively aborted foetuses for medical purposes.
  2. Others may regard the use of a cell-line derived from an abortion performed back in the 1970s as now sufficiently removed from the abortion itself to be excusable.
  3. Others again will draw a straight line from the ending of a human life in abortion through the cultivation of the cell-line to the use for manufacturing this vaccine; even if the cells have been propagated for years in a laboratory far removed from the abortion, that line of connection remains. They will be concerned not to benefit in any way from the death of the little girl whose cells were taken and cultivated, nor to be trivialising that death, and not to be encouraging the foetal tissue industry.

What was written about these three groups is, indeed, a reality. However, the Orthodox faithful need to know what the Orthodox Archbishop’s position is on the issue of the AstraZeneca vaccine having a direct link to abortion. In the next section of the statement we begin to see the position of the writers regarding this direct link. We would hope that it is similar to the position of clergymen, elders and monastics who clearly state that Orthodox Christians should absolutely reject any vaccines that are connected to fetal cell lines (FCLs) in any way. Below are some reminders of their words, that were mentioned earlier in this article. (See here for the full section.)

 

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After having read the above quotes we will see that the next section of the Archbishop’s joint statement is not only disappointing, but scandalous. It is not according to the position of the clergymen, elders and monastics featured in this section – Part 11. Here are the exact words from the statement which the Archbishop signed:

While we accept that the proposed vaccine may be sufficiently remote from the abortion that occasioned the derivation of the cell-line, we flag to you that any COVID-19 vaccine cultured on a foetal cell-line will raise serious issues of conscience for a proportion of our population. Those troubled by this may either acquiesce [give in] to the social and political pressure to use the vaccine, or conscientiously object to the use by themselves and their dependents; if the latter, they will suffer various disadvantages (e.g. denial of access to childcare, aged care or employment) and their abstention may undermine the goal of 'herd immunity'. Many will feel deeply conflicted whichever way they go. You may be aware that for some people the Rubella vaccine already presents such a moral dilemma.

Nowhere does the Orthodox Archbishop, nor those who signed with him, state their own position regarding the use of Fetal Cell Lines (FCLs) in the production of COVID-19 vaccines. Furthermore, they say that the vaccine “may be sufficiently remote from the abortion that occasioned the derivation of the cell-line.” This means maybe or maybe not, and it depends on each person’s conscience, while at the same time never revealing what their own conscience is telling them. In the case of the Archbishop, he should be clearly expressing what the Church says about such matters and provide the Orthodox Christian with clear guidance.

If the faithful read the entire statement without properly studying it, they may miss the fact that an Orthodox archbishop leaves Orthodox Christians free to accept or not accept a vaccine with a direct link to abortions. This is completely different to the clergymen, monastics, elders, and even eldresses, who categorically state that Orthodox Christians should not, under any circumstances, accept such vaccines, because of their connection to FCLs. Apart from this important reason, they also mention the risks that these vaccines pose to one’s physical health and even to one’s life.  

 

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The writers of the statement then ask the Prime Minister to assure them that any vaccines connected to FCLs will not be mandatory for those who object due to their conscientious religious or moral beliefs. This would mean the Archbishop is saying that Orthodox Christians who are not concerned about FCLs are free to accept the vaccine without any spiritual consequences. But this is absolutely not the case! The statement says: 

Given that many other vaccine trials are being conducted that do not involve the use of morally compromised human cell lines, we write to seek your assurance: (1) that the use of the AstraZeneca/Oxford University COVID-19 vaccine will in no sense be mandatory; (2) that no-one will be pressured to prescribe, dispense or consent to the use upon themselves or their dependents of the vaccine against their conscientious religious or moral beliefs or disadvantaged for failing to do so; and (3) that the government will ensure that an ethically uncontroversial alternative vaccine be made available in Australia if it is achieved.

Once again, this position is opposite to the many God-fearing, pious and right-believing Orthodox clergymen, monastics, elders and eldresses who have clearly stated that Orthodox Christians should not receive a vaccine that is connected to fetal cell lines (FCLs). We now know that this includes all COVID-19 vaccines and, for that fact, many other vaccines as mentioned above. The reason I am emphasising the point that FCLs are in all COVID-19 vaccines is because the Archbishop urges everyone to be vaccinated (see Example 1 above), without specifying which COVID-19 vaccines are free of FCLs. The reason he does not do so is that he knows very well that all COVID-19 vaccines are connected to fetal cell lines (FCLs).  In other words, it seems that he is no longer concerned (as he previously was in the joint statement of 20 August 2020) for those Orthodox Christians whose consciences do not allow them to accept vaccines that are even “remotely” connected to the murder of unborn babies. Nine months later, he said the following in a press conference on 26 May 2021: 

I would like to encourage all the people, it does not matter if they are Greek or not, Christians or not, Muslims or whatever, please get vaccinated. Don’t hesitate, take the decision and act. It’s not a matter that we have to protect our life or our health, we have to protect our society, we have to protect our country. The only solution that we have to get rid of the pandemic, the only light that we have to see at the end of the tunnel is to get vaccinated. 

 

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This lack of concern may explain why in the joint statement the Archbishop never committed to saying that it is morally wrong for anyone to receive a vaccine that is connected to abortions in any way. We should bear in mind that, as Father Stylianos Karpathiou said, all vaccines have some type of connection to fetal cell lines (FCLs), and there are even some COVID-19 vaccines that have:

used the cell line HEK-293 in all three stages: I. Design & Development II. Production and III. Confirmatory Lab Tests [i.e. Testing] 

Apart from this, Father Stylianos, unlike the Archbishop, clearly states that Orthodox Christians who accept to be vaccinated with a COVID-19 vaccine have fallen from the Orthodox Faith and Orthodox life. He says: 

The choice of being vaccinated is primarily a theological and ecclesiastical matter, and the acceptance of vaccination, considering the foundation on which the production of these particular vaccines were based [aborted fetal cell use], constitutes a fall from the correct Faith and life.

There has been an emphasis in this section on the unacceptability of Orthodox Christians accepting COVID-19 vaccines that are connected to abortions (FCLs). However, apart from this, the faithful must never forget that it has been shown, time and time again, that these vaccines do not work. See here

 

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To make sure I understood the Archbishop’s joint statement correctly, I asked Dr. Robles, our website’s regular medical advisor and consultant, who is very knowledgeable about COVID-19 vaccines, to check what has been written above, and to make some comments about the joint statement. Here is his reply:

Dear Father Kosmas,

I ask your blessing for me and my family!

I have read the statement co-signed by the Greek Archbishop of Australia four times now. He is mostly correct in what he says, and he is directly referring to the AstraZeneca/Oxford jab (DNA, adenovirus vector).  

However, he does not come out directly and say there is any issue with the vaccine. The Archbishop talks about “some,” “others,” “they,” and the Archbishop also says “While we accept that the proposed vaccine may be sufficiently remote from the abortion that occasioned the derivation of the cell-line we flag to you that any COVID-19 vaccine cultured on a fetal cell-line will raise serious issues of conscious for a proportion of our population. Those troubled by this may either acquiesce [give in] to the social and political pressure to use the vaccine, or conscientiously object to the use by themselves and by their dependence; if the later, they will suffer various disadvantages….” And lastly “Many will feel…”

I’m not sure why the Archbishop uses this language to hide behind, and I will not speculate. Lord have mercy! The notion that the Archbishop informs the prime minister that he and the churches are praying for a vaccine is proof that most people have no idea what is involved in vaccine research and development, that is, all COVID-19 vaccines use FCLs in their production.   

Lastly, the use of “The Anscombe Bioethics Center COVID-19 Briefing paper 2” and “An Ethics Assessment of COVID-19 Vaccine Programs” is concerning to say the least, actually embarrassing. Why are these position papers used at all? Does the Church not have two thousand years of ecclesiastical and dogmatic proofs to make an argument without relying on heterodox bioethicists? This is sad. Overall, this is a position paper with no backbone from the author. I'm not sure who wrote this, but it is no Shepherd! 

Lord have mercy, God help us! 

In Christ 

Dr Michael Robles (Paisios)

 

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2. Father Peter Heers - Orthodox Ethos

 

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Father Peter Heers, in the quote below, denounces many clergymen and professors who accepted COVID-19 vaccines, despite being well-informed about their connection to fetal cell lines (FCLs).

Note: The words in […] within the text below have been added for clarification.

Amazingly, in the midst of this demonic state of things we are told by some churchmen that God has brought forth a “miracle,” a God-sent solution which only a fool would reject: a novel gene-tweaking technology baptized as a “vaccine,” which does not (they always neglect to note) prevent contraction or transmission of the virus.  Yet worse, in terms of spiritual delusion, and in the face of the most serious ethical concerns arising from the employment of cell lines derived from murdered and dismembered unborn babies, we hear professors and clergymen stunningly accept as fait accompli [an accomplished fact] the light-hearted abandonment of the patristic axiom [teaching] and adoption of a utilitarian [practical] approach to the taking of these “vaccines”—an approach so antithetical [contradictory] to the narrow Way of the Lord. 

 

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3. Father John Drongitis – Holy Archdiocese of Athens, Greece

 

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Father John Drongitis comes from the village of Banato on the island of Zakynthos, Greece and has been serving the flock of Christ as a married priest for over two decades. As of 2010, he is the parish priest of the small chapel of St. Demetrius in Plaka, Athens (near the Acropolis), where he serves the Divine Liturgy and the rest church services daily. It is rare for a priest to serve Liturgy every day. We read about the devout practice of serving Liturgy every day in the lives of our Orthodox saints and holy elders: St John of San Francisco (†1966), Saint John of Kronstadt (†1908), Saint Justin Popovich (†1979), Saint Nicholas Planas (†1932), Saint Ephraim of Katounakia (†1998), Elder Haralambos Dionysiatis (†2000), and Abbot Ignatius Raksha of Hebron (†1986), just to name a few. The fact that Father John also does this demonstrates that he is a very pious Orthodox priest.

Father John Drongitis is the spiritual father of the women’s monastery of Saints Theodores, Aroania, Greece. He was one of eight priests who, in 2014, sent a letter to the Archbishop of Athens regarding the gay “pride parades,” and proposed an Orthodox response including special vigils, prayer, catechism, and the preaching of repentance. Father John is a married priest. Father John is a charismatic spiritual father who has helped many souls return to Christ by comforting, admonishing, and teaching. 

His first published authorial work in Greek titled 'Περι βασκανίας ήτοι περί φθόνου' (translation: Regarding the evil eye, namely regarding envy) is a penetrating look at the harmful effect of the passion of envy to us and our fellow humans.

The following extract is from a four-part series of interviews with Father John Drongitis on Covidism, conducted from 3rd to 7th October 2021. The fact that both Elder Savvas Agioritis (the Athonite) and Father Peter Heers provide links to Father John’s videos on their websites tells us that these highly-esteemed clergymen respect and strongly support Father John’s views on Covidism.

The vaccine is a spiritual contamination – from Part 3 of the interview

And, of course, since you have mentioned it, what is the spiritual issue apart from the sealing of the soul and body? It is the issue of contamination, which some Fathers here in Greece have spoken about strongly. They have settled it as an issue, in my opinion. Is there contamination by the vaccine? Of course there is contamination! From the moment [we knew of it] we know [there is contamination]. Was contamination not the reason why Saint Theodore’s miracle with the kollyva happened? Was there not contamination then?

 Is there not contamination now when we use cell lines of aborted embryos? Do you know how this happens? It is a dreadful collusion, a scenario, really, from a horror movie. The way these embryos are extracted, how these abortions happen. They happen precisely for this reason. It is not one abortion that happened. Let's not say such things. 

We should know what is happening. Wretched creatures from psychiatric hospitals, people in despair who become guinea pigs, either knowingly or, in most cases, without knowing. Living human beings taken for such scientific purposes. What are we doing?! Do we not know what goes on in the world at all? What do we read? What do we watch? Only television? This [the television] is like a global drug delivery. What is this? Is this how we develop awareness and form positions as people?

 

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To read an English transcript of all four interviews, see here.

 

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For Part 1 click here.

 

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For Part 2 click here.

 

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For Part 3 click here

 

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For Part 4 click here.

 

4. Metropolitan Neophytos - Holy Metropolis of Morphou, Cyprus 

 

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Many pious Orthodox Christians have a deep respect for Metropolitan Neophytos of Morphou, Cyprus, and as such, his view on the topic of the connection of fetal cell lines (FCLs) and vaccines would be invaluable. As mentioned above, on the official website of the Holy Metropolis of Morphou, under ‘Various Documents’, there is an article titled, “Shocking Facts about the Origin of Fetal Cell Lines and their Relationship to Vaccines” written by two pious Orthodox doctors.

Even though Metropolitan Neophytos did not write this article himself, the fact that he has made it available on the official website of his diocese clearly tells us that he is against vaccines due to the use of fetal cell lines at one or more stages of their production. In other words, the Metropolitan’s beliefs on this topic would be entirely in line with what these doctors are saying.

 

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This excellent and insightful article is rather long, but worth reading in its entirety. What makes it unique is that the doctors are pious Orthodox Christians, and one of them is also a theologian. Apart from their medical perspective, the doctors also include teachings of the Orthodox Church regarding this topic. The article will be the last section in Part 11.

Endorsed by Metropolitan Neophytos, the article by these God-fearing doctors reads as follows:

 

Shocking Facts about the Origin of Fetal Cell Lines 

and their Relationship to Vaccines

 

Source: Official Website of the Holy Metropolis of Morphou under “Various Documents” click here 

Date Posted: 17 December 2021 

 

Written by

 

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Efstathios Mitsopoulos, MD, PhD

Department of Nephrology, “Papageorgiou” General Hospital of Thessaloniki, Greece

 

and

 

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Dimitrios Galanakis, BPharm, BTheol, PhD

Pharmacy Director, Papageorgiou General Hospital 

  

Note: I have added words in square brackets […] within the text below for clarification, while the words in brackets (…) have been included by the doctors themselves.

Research based on human embryos is the subject of intense controversy worldwide. Many distinguished Embryology scientists admit that the miracle of human life begins at the moment of conception [1]. The Eastern Orthodox Church believes that the embryo is the most vulnerable form of human existence and therefore it is not permitted to be used for research purposes, regardless of the potential benefits. According to the dogmatic teaching of the Orthodox Church, the embryo is a human being consisting of body and soul from the moment of conception (ἅμα τῇ συλλήψειή ἐξ ἄκρας συλλήψεως”) and constitutes a unique and priceless existence destined for eternity.

 

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For this reason, the Church has always treated abortions as murders and involvement in abortion as complicity in a murder [being an accessory to murder], imposing the penances provided for by the sacred canons, regardless of the age of the embryo (2nd canon of Basil the Great, 91st canon of the Fifth-Sixth Ecumenical Council). But many today consider that the embryo is a simple clump of cells without characteristics of a human being.

 

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This huge difference in views is also reflected in the diversity of state laws regulating on matters relating to the embryo. Although many countries allow research using embryos under ‘strict’ conditions, very little information is provided regarding the embryos used to carry out this research. No country systematically publishes a review of the embryos that were utilised and continue to be used in this research, which makes it very difficult to obtain the relevant information [about what is going on]. Thus, it is impossible to obtain all the data, either because it is not being collected at all or because it is not publicly available. What kind of research is being carried out? What types of embryos are used? How are the embryos supplied in order to be used for research? What is the exact procedure by which embryos and fetal tissues end up in the hands of researchers? Is there an increase in the number of embryos being used for research? And most importantly, is this research connected in some way, or not, to the act of abortion, namely the murder of a human being with a body and a soulAlthough this information is withheld, there are several literature references that allow us to answer several of the above questions.

1. Fetal cell lines do not originate from dead embryos of miscarriages or therapeutic abortions* but from LIVING embryos of abortions that often die in the process of collecting their organs or tissues.

The spontaneous (unprovoked, unintentional) termination of pregnancy before the completion of the 24th week is called a miscarriage. Abortion (or termination of pregnancy) is the induced (the intentional) termination of pregnancy at the mother’s request before her 24th week. Therapeutic abortion is defined as the induced termination of pregnancy in order to protect the health of the mother.

* Note: From an Orthodox perspective, the term “therapeutic abortion” is something unacceptable, and most definitely scandalous. If readers are inclined to make a hasty judgement about the doctors and perhaps even reject the rest of the article, please read the detailed and enlightening explanation about the term “therapeutic abortion” provided at the end of the article.

Spontaneous miscarriage does not usually raise ethical issues because it is not intentional. The use of the miscarried fetal tissue is regulated by processes similar to those of the human tissue of a deceased adult [2]. However, the embryos of miscarriages cannot be used in research. They are considered unsuitable because, to a large extent, they either have a coexisting morbidity [a pre-existing or inborn problem] such as chromosomal abnormalities or they have been infected with viruses, or there has been tissue anoxia [loss of oxygen due to loss of the mother’s placental blood supply] due to the long time between the death of the embryo and its exit from the uterus [3]. For the same reasons, fetal tissue from spontaneous miscarriages is not permitted to be transplanted into humans [4,5].

The medical literature of the first half of the 20th century was more honest and open about its methods. Researcher Albert Sabin, well known for the development of the orally administered polio vaccine, in describing in 1936 the first important steps of his research, said: “A new approach was made by the use of 3- to 4-months-old human embryos, obtained aseptically [free of disease] by Cesarean section. (The authors are indebted to Dr. Lance Monroe, of Bellevue Hospital, for the 2 human embryos used in this investigation.)” [6].

In 1952 Thicke JC et al. [et al. means “and others”] described in the Canadian Journal of Medical Science the method by which they carried out their study, again involving the polio vaccine.  They fully revealed what is actively hushed up: “Human embryos of two and one-half to five months gestation were obtained from the gynaecological department of the Toronto General Hospital. They were placed in a sterile container and promptly transported to the virus laboratory of the adjacent Hospital for Sick Children. No macerated [damaged] specimens were used, and in many of the embryos the heart was still beating at the time of receipt in the virus laboratory!!!” [7].

Dr. Keith Crutcher, professor of Neurosurgery at the University of Cincinnati, in one of his articles published in 1993 stated: “It is important to recognize that the fetus, or the desired organ, must be living to serve as a useful tissue donor. …… The ideal tissue is that obtained from an intact living fetus. However, with rare exceptions, current abortion procedures involve destruction of the fetus as an entity and corresponding destruction of the fetal body and its tissues. Due to extensive tissue fragmentation, it may take a long time to identify suitable viable tissue by quickly sifting through the remains resulting from suction abortion. This delay can compromise the usefulness of the tissue. On the other hand, if the fetus is aborted relatively intact, it is much easier to obtain the desired tissue with minimal delay. Thus, it remains to be seen whether abortion procedures will be influenced by the demand for fresh intact fetal tissue as apparently was the case for initial studies in Sweden. [8].

Therefore, the type of abortion procedure performed affects the quality of the received tissue.  Hysterectomy (i.e. the removal of the uterus along with the embryo) provides superior quality tissue, because it is minimally traumatic for the embryo. This technique, however, presents the greatest risk for the pregnant woman. Childbirth by caesarean section provides a similar quality of fetal tissue to hysterectomy. The woman’s abdomen and uterus are surgically incised to allow the removal of the embryo. On the contrary, the most common process of dilation and suction abortion, which is the least dangerous for the pregnant woman, is the most destructive for the embryo and does not offer tissues and organs that haven’t undergone physical damage [9].

The transplant material is usually taken from embryos aged 12-18 weeks of gestation. The embryo at this stage has well-developed physical and neurological reactions to pain. There is now enough evidence that embryos feel the pain as early as the 3rd month [10]. Fetal tissue for transplantation should be “collected” within a few minutes of being removed from the mother. Ideally this is done by hysterectomy, that is, by removing the fetus along with the uterus.”  Drugs that reduce the normal activity of the embryo should be avoided because they disrupt cellular functions. Therefore, the embryo when removed from the mother should be in as live[and undrugged] a state as possible [11].

None of the above studies mention that the embryos originated from therapeutic abortions.

2. The view that abortion and the subsequent use of fetal tissue are two completely independent acts, and therefore that the use of these tissues can be morally isolated from any of the immorality associated with abortion, is completely incorrect.

The evidence supporting the direct relation between abortions and the production of various medicines and vaccines is indisputable. But in order to fully assess the degree of association [between abortion and some medicines and vaccines], it is important to understand the scientific data on the viability [survivability] of tissues and cells. In research in which fetal tissue is used, as in any type of human tissue or organ transplantation, it is important that the samples collected consist of living tissues. Dead tissue is useless. It is not possible to carry out an abortion and decide later on that the aborted embryo will be used for cellular research. From the evidence cited below, it is clear that the decision to use an aborted embryo for cellular research precedes the abortion itself, and therefore the two acts are morally linked in a direct manner.

 

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Mahowald et al. report that an embryo, after leaving the uterus, can survive for a short period of time until death occurs. During this time, and for a few more hours if properly maintained, the tissue is still alive and therefore able to function if transplanted into another living organism. This is exactly the case also with the viability [survivability] of organs and tissues obtained from “cadaveric” donors [deceased organ and tissue donors] [12].

Studies in embryos of the second trimester show that the average duration of survival outside the uterus (without intervention) is about 1 hour. A British study of 1,306 live [very premature] births between 20 and 23 weeks gestation noted that at 20 weeks the average survival time of the embryo was 80 minutes, while at 23 weeks it was 6 hours [13].

It is therefore important for researchers conducting experiments with fetal material to develop a supply method of embryos and their tissues while they are still alive (fresh). C. Ward Kischer, a leading professor of embryology, states: “In order to sustain 95% of the cells, the live tissue would need to be preserved within five minutes of the abortion. Within an hour the cells would continue to deteriorate, rendering the specimens useless.” [14].

The famous professor of Microbiology and Anatomy, Leonard Hayflick, creator of WI-38, one of the first fetal cell lines, states in a study published in 1961 that, since the fetal tissue they were receiving was viable, the cells could be cultured (i.e., sometimes the fetal tissue they received was not viable). And apparently that’s why he adds that they were trying to minimise the time period between taking the embryo or the fetal tissue and cultivating it in vitro [i.e. from the mother to the test tubes as soon as possible]. The number of viable embryos that were eventually used for the study was nineteen. The number of unsuitable embryos is not reported in the study [15]. In yet another study, published in 1965, all embryos that were used came from abortions and all were about 3 months old [16].

Perhaps the most misunderstood perception [wrong view] among theologians and those involved in moral science [bio-ethics] is that the abortions did not occur for the purpose of creating vaccines. Some imagine that those [who are] involved in the creation of fetal cell lines have nothing to do with the abortion itself, and therefore no moral issue arises. But that is not the case. A total of three [persons] are involved in the research [process] for the creation of a fetal cell line: the mother, the doctor who performs the abortion, and the researcher who attempts to develop the cell line, and all share together the responsibility for this heinous act. The intention of the mother of the embryo may not in fact be related at all to either embryonic stem cell research or research for medicines and vaccines. In all cases, however, the intention of the researcher and the gynecologist [who performs the abortion] is quite clear. It is not just that a premeditated murder is taking place, but everything is done with a clear intention of benefiting from the murder of a human life, with possible implications for the commercialisation of this process [focused on making money].  And in the case of many vaccines, each of the abortions was performed with full knowledge in advance that the embryo will be used, not for some kind of vague future research, but for the specific intention to create vaccines.

 

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Before the abortion of an embryo whose tissue will be used for research, there are certain steps that take place. These include: obtaining the consent of the mother and conducting genetic testing (for any hereditary diseases), choosing the method of abortion, and arranging additional measures for optimal [tissue] harvesting. For the production of the fetal cell line WI-38, Dr. Stanley Plotkin revealed that the embryo was chosen by Swedish researcher Sven Guard specifically for this purpose. The parents, he says, were unfortunately married and lived in Stockholm. They proceeded with the abortion because they already had many children. They had no family history of hereditary disease or cancer [17].

For more information about Dr. Stanley Plotkin, read the following infographic titled “Dr. Stanley Plotkin: Modern Godfather of Vaccines”.

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To read the full sized infographic, click here.

Let us now return to the article:

Bo M. et al. state that for the creation of the Walvax-2 cell line as a prospective substrate for vaccine production: “We obtained 9 fetuses through rigorous screening based on carefully specified inclusion criteria. … The fetal material was provided by the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology of Yunnan Hospital, with legal and ethical agreements from the donator. Before the study, we made strict and comprehensive inclusion criteria in order to guarantee a high quality cell strain: 1) gestational age 2 to 4 months; 2) induction of labor with the water bag method; 3) the parents career should not involve contact with chemicals and radiation; 4) both parents are in good health without neoplastic and genetic diseases, and with no history of human tissue or organ transplantation in the families traced for 3 generations; and 5) no infectious diseases. The tissues from the freshly aborted fetuses were immediately sent to the laboratory for the preparation of the cells.” [18].

Dr. Van Der Eb, creator of the two cell lines, HEK-293 and PER.C6, which were used in the production of Covid-19 vaccines, states (from an audio recording): “So what I would like to do is to describe to you how and why we have made two different cell lines adenovirus transformed human embryo cell lines which are called 293 and PER.C6. Both cell lines were made in my lab, and also the cells, the starting material, was prepared by myself at the University of Leiden. The 293 cell was made by Frank Graham in 1973 from human embryonic kidney cells that were made from fetal tissue one year ago by myself one year before that, so that was in 19 -- probably in 1972,…. The precise date is not known anymore. The fetus, as far as I can remember was completely normal. Nothing was wrong. The reasons for the abortion were unknown to me. I probably knew at that time, but it got lost, all this information. …. The PER.C6 cell was made by Ron Bout and Frits Fallaux in 1995 from an embryonic retina cultures that were made from fetal tissue by me ten years before that, in 1985. … So I isolated retina from a fetus, from a healthy fetus as far as could be seen, of 18 weeks old. There was nothing special with a family history or the pregnancy was completely normal up to the 18 weeks, and it turned out to be a socially indicated abortus, abortus provocatus [induced abortion], and that was simply because the woman wanted to get rid of the fetus. The mother was completely normal. That I know and had -- there was nothing wrong with the mother. She had at least two children afterwards in the same hospital in Leiden, which were completely healthy. The father was not known, not to the hospital anymore, what was written down, and unknown father, and that was, in fact, the reason why the abortion was requested.” [19]. Therefore, it is clearly seen that for the cell lines used to create COVID-19 vaccines, the cells were taken from healthy embryos, via deliberately [induced] abortions.

 

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Women who are thinking of having an abortion are more likely to go through with it if they are given the opportunity to donate the embryo for research. A study published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal [20] reported that “of the 122 who indicated that they would consider an abortion if they were pregnant, 21 (17.2%) stated that they would be more likely to have an abortion if they could donate tissue for FTT, 77 (63.1%) replied that they would not be more likely to do so, and 24 (19.7%) were uncertain.” Therefore, the possibility of “utilising” the embryo encourages mother to decide to have an abortion.

 

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3. The view that very few embryos were used and that other embryos are no longer used is also completely incorrect.

While each individual cell line contains the cells of only a single embryo, very many aborted embryos are used in the process of creating a cell line. For example, Stanley Plotkin admitted that in a single vaccine [research] study, 76 aborted embryos were used [21].

 

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The following infographic titled “The Children Sacrificed for Vaccine Development – 60 Years of Abortion for Vaccines” is very important and, at the same time, absolutely shocking.

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To read the full sized infographic, click here. 

Returning to the article:

Research which is based on the supply of human embryonic tissue is very well hidden from detection and the public eye. Two are the main sources of embryo supply. One is human embryos that come from abortions. The second main source of embryos are those that come from IVF fertilisation, i.e., embryos that are created in the laboratory and not in intrauterine conditions [within the uterus].

 

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A study that openly gives a small part of the relevant data is a recent publication which presents the total number of human embryos used in Belgium for research protocols from 2007 to 2015. According to the results of this study, 15,811 embryos were used in Belgium alone in 36 research protocols during the above period. 66% of them, i.e., 10,492, were “fresh” supernumerary [excess] embryos from in vitro fertilisation which were unsuitable for transport or freezing, 26% (4,083 embryos) were supernumerary [excess] frozen embryos whose parents did not want another child, and the remaining 8% (1,236 embryos) were embryos created specifically for research purposes. Data on the number of embryos and fetal tissues derived from abortions were not given in the study [22]. Although the data is not available to the public, we do know that several U.S. states (such as New Jersey and California) have allocated funds for stem cell research, as reported in a 2006 publication. The same study notes that the sale of fetal tissues or embryos is prohibited by almost half of the U.S. states, so it is apparently allowed by the other half [the states without prohibitions]. The laws in California, Connecticut, Massachusetts, and New Jersey encourage research in embryonic cell lines, including cloned embryos [23].

Since the vaccines and other medicinal products manufactured with the help of fetal cell lines are legal, it is not possible to stop research in this area, and, as a result, more and more embryos are being used. For example, in 1982, 16,500 embryos were found in the home of a former laboratory owner in the USA [24]. In 2003 it was revealed that a Dutch company was procuring aborted embryos from New Zealand [25]. In 2019, 2,200 preserved embryos were found in the home of a gynecologist in the USA after his death [26]. Articles in journals openly discuss the economic aspects involved in the exploitation of fetal tissues in Britain for scientific purposes [27].

 

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4. The view that the COVID-19 vaccines available in our country (Greece) do not contain cells from embryos derived from abortions is also partially incorrect.

Of the four vaccines available in our country, two (AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson) use fetal cell lines in the stages of their production and confirmatory in vitro testing, and the other two (Moderna and Pfizer) only at the stage of confirmatory tests.

Vaccines which use fetal cell lines in order to produce the final product, almost certainly contain cellular remnants from the embryo that was aborted, as these cannot be 100% removed during the purification process [28-30].

 

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Another infographic from the highly recommended website A Voice for Truth is titled “Safety of aborted-derived fetal cell lines used in vaccine production”. This infographic confirms what the two doctors said above.

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To read the full sized infographic, click here.

The doctors conclude their article by saying:

In conclusion, the once noble practice of medical science has now been contaminated by theories and practices according to which human life is nothing more than a simple commodity that can be cut from the womb, packaged, patented, bought, and sold on the justification that scientific research must be promoted at all cost. However, when someone performs an act that is intended to bring benefit to the wider community, but an innocent person is harmed by it, then the act is not in accordance with Christian morality. In fact, it is utilitarianism, a hedonistic* theory that promotes the greatest possible “benefit” for the greatest possible number of people. Unfortunately, instead of ascending spiritually and being like our Creator, we seem to be returning to a morally corrupt philosophy, which has as its principle the survival of the strongest.

* Note: Hedonistic means relating to, or characteristic of a hedonist or hedonism. A hedonist is a person whose life is devoted to the pursuit of pleasure and self-gratification. This type of life is completely opposed to an Orthodox spiritual life.

 

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Bibliography

1.      Kischer CW. A Commentary on the Beginning of Life: A View From Human Embryology. Linacre Q. 1996; 63:73-78

2.      Greely HT, Hamm T, Johnson R, et al.  The ethical use of human fetal tissue in medicine. Stanford University Medical Center Committee on Ethics. N Engl J Med 1989; 320:1093-1096

3.      Rojansky N. and Schenker JG. The use of fetal tissue for therapeutic applications. Int J Gynecol Obstet 1993; 41: 233-240

4.      Annas GJ, Elias S. The politics of transplantation of human fetal tissue. N Engl J Med 1989 320: 1079-1082

5.      Garry DJ, Caplan AL, Vawter DE, Kearney W. Are there really alternatives to the use of fetal tissue from elective abortions in transplantation research? N Engl J Med 1992; 26;327(22):1592-1595

6.      Sabin AB, Olitsky PK. Cultivation of Poliomyelitis Virus in vitro in Human Embryonic Nervous Tissue. Proceedings of the Society for Experimental Biology and Medicine, 1936; 34: 357-359

7.      Thicke JC, Duncan D, Wood W, et al. Cultivation of poliomyelitis virus in tissue culture. Can J Med Sci. 1952;30:231-245

8.      Keith A. Crutcher. Fetal Tissue Research: The Cutting Edge? Linacre Q. 1993; 60:10-19

9.      Frankowska AM, Note, Fetal Tissue Transplants: A Proposal to Amend the Uniform Anatomical Gift Act, 1989 U. ILL. L. REV. 1095, 1097, https://archive.org/stream/indianalawreview26293unse/indianalawreview26293unse_djvu.txt

10.   Derbyshire SWG, Bockmann JC. Reconsidering fetal pain J Med Ethics 2020;46:3–6

11.   Peter McCullagh: “The Foetus As Transplant Donor the Scientific, Social, and Ethical Perspectives” Wiley; 1987

12.   Mahowald MB, Silver J, Ratcheson RA. The Ethical Options in Transplanting Fetal Tissue. The Hastings Center Report 1987; 17: 9-15

13.   Macfarlane PI, Wood S, Bennett J. Non-viable delivery at 20–23 weeks gestation: observations and signs of life after birth. Arch Dis Child Fetal Neonatal Ed 2003; 88:F199–F202

14.   https://www.issues4life.org/pdfs/CommercialMarketsCreatedByAbortion-ProfitingFromTheFetalDistributionChain.pdf

15.   Hayflick L., Moorhead PS. The serial cultivation of human diploid cell strains. Exp Cell Res 1961; 25:585-621

16.   Hayflick L. The limited in vitro lifetime of human diploid cell strains. Exp Cell Res 1965; 37:614-36

17.   Gamma Globulin Prophylaxis; Inactivated Rubella Virus; Production and Biologics Control of Live Attenuated Rubella Virus Vaccines: Discussion on Session V. Am J Dis Child.  1969;118(2):372–381

18.   Bo  M, Li-Fang H, Yi-Li Z. Et al. Characteristics and viral propagation properties of a new human diploid cell line, walvax-2, and its suitability as a candidate cell substrate for vaccine production. Hum Vaccine Immunother 2015; 11(4):998-1009

19.   Meeting transcript; USA FDA: Center for Biologics Evaluation & Research, Vaccines and related biological products advisory committee, 16/5/2001, https://wayback.archive-it.org/7993/20170404095417/https:/www.fda.gov/ohrms/dockets/ac/01/transcripts/3750t1_01.pdf]

20.   Martin DK, Maclean H, Lowy FH, Williams JV, Dunn EV. Fetal tissue transplantation and abortion decisions: a survey of urban women. Can Med Assoc J. 1995;,153: 545-552

21.   https://cogforlife.org/wp-content/uploads/Plotkin76Fetuses.pdf

22.   Pennings G, Segers S, Debrock S, et al. Human embryo research in Belgium: an overview. Fertil Steril 2017; 108:96-107

23.   Ostrer H, Wilson DI, Hanley NA. Human embryo and early fetus research. Clin Genet 2006: 70: 98–107

24.   https://www.nytimes.com/1985/08/29/us/16500-fetuses-to-get-burial-after-long-fight-on-funeral.html

25. https://web.archive.org/web/20030710230811/https://www.nzherald.co.nz/storydisplay.cfm?storyID=3503775&thesection=news&thesubsection=general

26.   https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/14/us/dr-ulrich-klopfer-fetal-remains.html

27.   Kent J. The fetal tissue economy: From the abortion clinic to the stem cell laboratory. Social Science & Medicine 2008; 67(11):1747-1756

28.   https://lozierinstitute.org/update-covid-19-vaccine-candidates-and-abortion-derived-cell-lines/

29.   Besnard L, Fabre V, Fettig M, et al. Clarification of vaccines: An overview of membrane based technology trends and best practices. Biotechnol Adv. 2016;34(1):1-13

30.   Cherradi Y, Merdy SL, Sim LJ, et al. Filter-based clarification of viral vaccines and vectors. BioProcess International 2018; 16(4):48-53

 

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With all the information presented in this section, there is no room for doubt that all the COVID-19 vaccines available have used aborted fetal cells in one or more stages of their testing, development, production, and design.  It is therefore absolutely unacceptable and unethical for any Orthodox Christian to receive such a vaccine and, using the words of Father Stylianos Karpathiou, “it constitutes a fall from the correct Faith and life.”

 

 

PART TWELVE: Abortion, Therapeutic Abortion and Hormonal Contraceptives

Why is the term “therapeutic abortion” troubling?

I first encountered the term “therapeutic abortion” while reading the above article by the aforementioned pious doctors. The term was very troubling to me, and I was confused as to why these doctors would make use of it at all.

Without jumping to conclusions, I decided to investigate what, exactly, is meant by “therapeutic abortion.” Apart from doing my own research, I reached out to the doctors themselves (through Hieromonk Cyprian of Holy Trinity Monastery, who is fluent in Greek), to ask about it. We also consulted with several spiritual fathers who are experienced in matters to do with abortion. Finally, we also reached out to Dr. Robles, our website’s regular medical advisor and consultant, about this topic.

Let us begin with some medical information on so-called therapeutic abortion, keeping in mind that this information is provided so that we have an idea of how the medical world regards this term. We will quickly learn that the views of the medical profession are totally contrary to Orthodox teaching.

The following medical “information” has been taken from the website 132 Healthwise. Although disturbing to read, I feel compelled to include it in this article, and I ask forgiveness of the faithful for doing so. However, I consider it important for Orthodox Christians to know what these medical monsters believe. The faithful may, of course, skip this section if they wish, but without this knowledge it will be hard to understand the five responses below.

What is a Therapeutic Abortion? [according to the medical world]: Abortions are medical procedures that are performed to end a pregnancy. People decide to have abortions for many different reasons, including for medical purposes. When the main reason for ending a pregnancy is a medical issue, then the procedure is known as a therapeutic abortion.

The term therapeutic abortion refers to a pregnancy termination that is performed for medical reasons. Having an abortion can save a woman’s life or prevent her from experiencing serious health problems. Abortions can also be the safest or most ethical option when the foetus has a severe abnormality.

Abortions can also be performed in the UK for other reasons, for example in order to protect the mental wellbeing of the mother or for the benefit of any existing children in the family. The term therapeutic abortion wouldn’t be used in these cases.

Reasons for Having a Therapeutic Abortion [according to the medical world]: Therapeutic abortions are performed when there is a medical need. Doctors may recommend ending the pregnancy for any of the following reasons:

  • The mother’s life is in danger if she continues with the pregnancy
  • The woman needs treatment such as chemotherapy that cannot be performed while she is pregnant
  • There is a risk of severe physical or mental harm to the woman if the pregnancy continues
  • A fatal foetal abnormality has been detected that will result in miscarriage, stillbirth, or death soon after birth
  • The foetus has a serious abnormality
  • Selective reduction of multiple pregnancies may be performed if continuing to carry all of the foetuses would be too risky

All of these can be reasons for choosing a therapeutic termination, but it is a very personal choice. Some women may decide to continue with the pregnancy under circumstances that others would not. It is important to discuss the risks with a doctor in order to make the right choice. The best choice for you will depend on how you feel about the options as well as the potential effects of continuing with the pregnancy.

Why is Therapeutic Abortion So Important? [according to the medical world]: While there is considerable debate about other types of abortion, most people agree that therapeutic abortion should be legal and easily accessible. Abortion can play a vital role in women’s healthcare. In countries where abortion is illegal or difficult to access even when there is a medical need, women’s lives are at risk. Women can die, suffer serious complications, or be left with long term disabilities because they were forced to continue with their pregnancies. It can also be both physically and emotionally harmful for women to be made to continue with pregnancies when the foetus has a fatal or serious abnormality.

Having a therapeutic abortion can be the best option to protect the life and wellbeing of the mother. However, it is never an easy decision to end a pregnancy for medical reasons, especially when it was planned. It is essential for women to get all of the advice and support they need before, during and after the termination.

 

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Now that we understand how the majority of the medical world looks at the term “therapeutic abortion”, and after we have been sickened by it, let us learn how the Orthodox Church looks at this issue. The faithful will undoubtedly be refreshed by the therapeutic wisdom of our holy Church, and hopefully be able to recover from the stench of immoral and antichristian medical opinions.

 

How do the two pious doctors explain their use of the term therapeutic abortion?

As mentioned above, we asked Hieromonk Cyprian of the Holy Trinity Monastery, New York, USA, to reach out to Drs. Eustathios Mitsopoulos and Demetrios Galanakis to clarify how the faithful should understand the term “therapeutic abortion” from an Orthodox perspective. The following is their reply, dated 16 February 2022: 

 

Father Cyprian, bless!

We have carefully read your legitimate concerns about the reference to the term 'therapeutic abortion'. In order for there not to be a misinterpretation, we suggest adding the following, either immediately after the paragraph referring to "therapeutic abortions", or the inclusion of an asterisk in the term "therapeutic abortion" and its insertion as a footnote:

We should clarify that, as we mentioned at the beginning, for Orthodox Christians abortion is undoubtedly equivalent to the murder of a human being. It is therefore inconceivable for us to classify a murder as 'therapeutic'. The term "therapeutic abortion" was coined at a time when abortions were still forbidden by human law. It was a first stage in the legalization of abortion. This is also shown by the fact that the reasons why permission could be given to perform a "therapeutic" abortion were often quite general and vague, such as appeals to various psychological disorders. In this day and age when abortion has been legalized, this term is rarely mentioned anymore.

Of course, a pregnancy always poses some risks to the mother's health, fortunately few. However, when the health of the pregnant woman is already burdened by some chronic diseases of the heart or kidneys or diabetes mellitus, these risks are perhaps greater. But the POSSIBILITY of a greater danger to the mother never justifies the murder of the embryo.

Thank you again for your comments and we are at your disposal for further improvements.

In Christ,

Eustathios and Demetrios

 

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After receiving their reply, the following quote was subsequently sent to the two doctors for their consideration. The quote, written by a priest, is taken from an article titled: The Orthodox Church’s View on Abortion, which appeared on an Orthodox website. Even though this article has some good information, the quote below is troubling and not in accordance with the Holy Canons. To see the whole article, click here

A pregnancy may also sometimes threaten the mother’s life if carried to term. If this is the case, especially when the mother has other children, the Church recommends leniency from spiritual fathers. Each situation would require the careful attention of the priest and bishop. Women who terminate their pregnancy under these circumstances can return to communion with the Church, so long as they fulfill the canon of penance assigned by the priest and go to confession.

 

The following is a reply from the doctors, dated 21 February 2022, regarding this quote:

 

Father Cyprian, bless! 

Thank you for your comments. “Therapeutic abortion” is not in agreement with the tradition of the Orthodox Church because:

1. The Holy Canons [The Rudder] prohibit abortion as a whole, without categorizations and exceptions, whether they concern the age of the embryo or the mother, or the state of health of the embryo or mother, or whether they concern the family situation of the mother.

 

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2. To the best of our knowledge, there is no witness of a recognized saint of the Orthodox Church in favour of “therapeutic abortions”. The saints are those who authentically interpret God’s will when they speak in the Holy Spirit, and as such, are in agreement with the tradition of the Holy Fathers. Any other opinion that comes from a member of the Orthodox Church, whether he is a clergyman or a layman, must be clearly verified on the basis of the Orthodox tradition.

 

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The text of the priest to which you refer, admits that the tradition of the Orthodox Church, including the Holy Canons, is not in accordance with “therapeutic abortion”, nor in the individual case of a mother who has other children, because she too must confess, and a spiritual penance imposed on her. Therefore, there is no room for ecclesiastical economy* in this case, because if it were permitted, the spiritual father of that mother would give a blessing to have the abortion, and there would not be a need for repentance and a penance. We believe that the doubts and confusion introduced by the example of the mother who has other children is a failure of the text and should be corrected by the author.
 
* Ecclesiastical economy: This is when the usual strict canons of the Orthodox Church are relaxed for the spiritual benefit of the faithful. For example, the canons strictly say that Roman Catholics must be received into the Church through baptism, that is, three immersions followed by chrismation. However, at times, out of ecclesiastical economy, a bishop may permit a Roman Catholic to be accepted into the Orthodox Church by chrismation only, because of some exceptional reason. Unfortunately, today, this has become the accepted practice instead of an exception. In the case of abortion, it is strictly forbidden by the Church and there is no room for ecclesiastical economy – there are no exceptions.
 
In Part Four, Example 6, “A synod of bishops temporarily permits abortion”, we read how a Church incorrectly tried to apply economy for women that were raped. See here
 
Back to the doctors' reply.
 

Moreover, from a scientific point of view, no doctor can confidently claim and put their signature to the fact that the mother will die if the embryo is not murdered. Nor is it the other way around, that is, no one can guarantee that if the embryo is murdered the mother will survive. That is why the decision is always made by the mother. Therefore, in such a critical situation nothing will be certain except the decision to murder the embryo. Everything else will be likely to happen but it may also not happen. And the question that arises is, if I have a chance, even a great one, of dying, do I have the right to disobey God’s commandment that clearly says “thou shalt not kill” and kill my own child? Definitely not!

 

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We do not ignore the gravity of such cases as the one you mention in your question, nor of the sorrow and pain they inflict on a family. But nothing is done without the knowledge of God. The doctor must provide every possible assistance towards the survival of both the mother and the embryo. However, the decision on whether someone will live or die is not made by either the medical scientist or the mother. The Lord of life and death is Christ, and we must entreat Him in such critical circumstances to settle the matter as He knows best. Our prayer is the strongest weapon in such moments and can draw His mercy and settle the matter in the best possible way.

We hope that this has helped.

In Christ,

Eustathios and Demetrios

 

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Glory to God that such pious and God-fearing doctors exist! Their comments are in line with Orthodox teaching.

 

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(Source – click here.)  

 

What does a traditional Orthodox hierarch say about therapeutic abortion?

As mentioned earlier, we also asked experienced clergymen about the term “therapeutic abortion.” The first response by a clergyman, dated 27 February 2022, is from His Grace Bishop Luke of Syracuse, Abbot of Holy Trinity Monastery, a traditional Orthodox bishop. Here is a summary of the points he made when asked about this topic:

 

  • The position that the doctors express regarding “therapeutic abortion” is correct.
  • In my 43 years as a spiritual father (both as a priest and bishop), I have never heard of a situation where a woman is permitted by the Church to have an abortion because her life is in danger. 
  • Church Tradition, the Canons of the Church, and the Fathers of the Church do not allow spiritual fathers to bless the termination of a child. It would be like the mother asking a priest for a blessing to commit murder. There is no basis for a spiritual father to bless a mother to kill her own baby. It is not allowed - that’s all there is to it.
  • There are several circumstances where the Church uses economy, but I have never heard of economy being applied to allow abortion when the mother’s life is in danger
  • If the mother says to me, “Do you want me to die?” I will tell her that there is nothing in Church Tradition that tells me you are allowed to kill your child. If a spiritual father were to bless the termination of a child it would seem that the Church is blessing the woman’s sin. The same goes for fornication - a spiritual father cannot allow a person to commune if they are fornicating because that would mean that the Church tolerates the sin of fornication.

 

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On the Holy Trinity Church Supplies website, the only book on abortion they have available is
Real Choices: Listening to Women, Looking for Alternatives to Abortion” by Frederica Mathewes-Green. The author is the wife of an Orthodox priest, the Very Reverend Father Gregory Mathewes-Green. I have never read this book personally, but I know that Holy Trinity Church Supplies carefully scrutinise the books they sell to ensure Orthodox content, and for this reason, I have included it here.

 

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For the book version, click here

 

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For the e-book version, click here

 

What does a traditional Orthodox monastery say about therapeutic abortion?

The following is the response from an experienced spiritual father from a very traditional Greek Orthodox monastery, dated 28 February 2022, regarding the topic of “therapeutic abortions”.

I read through the dialogue you sent me regarding therapeutic abortions and found it quite encouraging, and in line with the teachings of the Holy Fathers. I also shared it with the abbot, who confirmed that we do not bless therapeutic abortions.  The only case, he said, that we would give the blessing is if the embryo was in the fallopian tube and not in the womb, in which case the child could never develop and be born. [The priest is referring to an ectopic pregnancy – this will be superficially covered below.]

In all other cases, we would encourage the woman to have faith and continue the pregnancy, trusting in God, even if this is against the advice of the medical profession. Should she choose to abort the child, then she would have to confess and receive a penance

I hope that my answer is adequate.  If not, please let me know.

Let us now look at what an ectopic pregnancy is.  

 

What exactly is an ectopic pregnancy?

Fertilisation (conception) takes place when the sperm and egg unite in one of the fallopian tubes. According to the Orthodox Church, the fertilised egg is a newly created person with a soul. In a normal pregnancy, it takes about 6-12 days for the fertilised egg to travel down the fallopian tube to the uterus and attach to the uterine lining in a process known as implantation.

In the case of an ectopic pregnancy, the fertilised egg does not attach to the lining of the uterus. Instead, the fertilised egg implants and starts to develop in one of the fallopian tubes or in another abnormal place. More than 95% of ectopic pregnancies occur in a fallopian tube. However, a fertilised egg can also implant and start to develop in some other locations outside the womb such as the abdominal cavity, the cervix or the ovary.

The following diagram shows a normal pregnancy and an ectopic pregnancy in a fallopian tube.

 

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Is there a need for a proper analysis of this topic?

This explanation is very enlightening, but at the same time complicated. There are other Orthodox Traditionalists who have different opinions on the topic of ectopic pregnancies than the one mentioned above. For example, there are those who disagree to any type of termination of an ectopic pregnancy.

There is a need to further investigate the issue of ectopic pregnancies in more detail, looking both at the Orthodox Church’s teaching and at medical science. It has become overwhelming for me and is beyond my abilities. Let us pray that this topic will be covered by pious Orthodox Christians who are qualified medically, but more so are well versed in Orthodox Christian teaching. We need to learn what the grace filled elders have to say about this. God willing, this will occur soon.

Now more than ever, we need God’s enlightenment about the topic of abortion in general, especially after the horrible and confusing comments of an Archbishop in the U.S. These comments have never before been uttered by an Orthodox hierarch.

On 21 January 2022, Archbishop Elpidophoros of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, during a March for Life rally in Washington, D.C., made the following comments:

“We affirm the gift and sanctity of life—all life, born and unborn. As Christians we confess that every human being is made in their image and likeness of God. Every life is worthy of our prayer and our protection, whether in the womb, or in the world. We are all responsible for the well-being of children. We are their “keepers,” and cannot shirk from our accountability for their welfare,”

 At the same time, we also affirm our respect for the autonomy of women. It is they who bring forth life into the world. By His incarnation, our Lord, God, and Savior Jesus Christ assumed human nature, through His conception in the womb of the Virgin Mary. She freely chose to bring Him into the world, and God respected her freedom. We can and must make the case for life, both born and unborn, by our own example of unconditional love.”

Thanks be to God that four Orthodox hierarchs, and many pious Orthodox Christians, spoke out against the demonic words of this “hierarch”. Unfortunately, God has permitted bishops such as him to preside in the Orthodox Church. Why? Because God gives bishops who are closest in spirit to the Orthodox Christians of the time. In other words, when the people have gone off, God will give “off” bishops. This has happened often in the history of the Church, but we are especially seeing it in our own times. 

 

Why did God not reprimand the Christians who called their bishop a bad name?

We read the following story from one of the many Prologues in the Orthodox Church. Prologue is another word for Synaxarion which means a collection of the lives of the saints.

In a once-spiritual Byzantine town, the people had become lazy and indifferent to spiritual life. Because of this, they were shamelessly and boldly committing sins. They did whatever they wanted, broke all moral laws and canons, and ignored all the reproaches (corrections, reprimands) of their good elderly bishop. No matter how much he begged them to change their ways and repent, they remained unrepentant. The townsfolk merely laughed at the elderly bishop and waved him off as they would an annoying fly.

Finally, the old bishop died. A young new bishop was appointed, who began to live such a sinful life of pleasure that even the townsfolk, who thought they had already seen everything, were shocked. Suddenly they missed their good old humble, elderly bishop.

The townsfolk found it difficult to endure their new bishop’s constant demands for money, his corruption, his humiliations and beatings, and his most incredible and wild disorder. Unable to stand their bishop any longer, the citizens of the town cried out in unity: “Why, oh Lord, have You sent us such a monster?

They had no idea how to pray properly, but after a long period of prolonged and pitiful crying, the Lord appeared to one of the town fathers and replied: “I tried to find someone worse for you, but
I couldn’t
.”

 

 

To be continued... 

 

(To return to Contents list, click here.) 

 

Updated and revised: 5 September 2022 (Note: apart from new sections being added, some previous sections have been either revised or extra information added - please re-read.)