Why a Muslim for President Wouldn’t Be a Bad Thing

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I was really disappointed when I heard about what the republican candidate for the U.S. presidency, Ben Carson, said recently: “I would not advocate that we put a Muslim in charge of this nation. I absolutely would not agree with that.” In all fairness, Ben Carson also made another statement, which I do like: “If there’s somebody who is of any faith but they say things and their life has been consistent with things that will elevate this nation and make it possible for everybody to succeed and bring peace and harmony, then I’m with them.” (See CNN article about this).

What role should religion play in selecting a president? Continue reading

Trump’s Anti-Immigration Policy Is Anti-Christianity, Like So Many of His Views

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I came here and became an undocumented alien. I’m biased on the immigration issue, but not in a bad way I would say, but rather in the live-in-another-person’s-shoes kind of way. I didn’t know I was undocumented until I turned 16. My life flipped upside down when I found out this country I loved to live in didn’t want me, especially because I didn’t do anything willfully. That’s the funny thing about criminal laws, most require CRIMINAL INTENT—some willful, knowing action. Continue reading

When 9/11 Was Only a Coptic Holiday

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Before the U.S. mourned the tragic events of September 11, 2001, the Copts had been commemorating that day as the start of their New Year for hundreds of years, as it happens to coincide with the Coptic New Year according to the Coptic calendar (except that it falls on September 12th when there is a leap year, as it does this year).* Interestingly, the Copts have been associating that day with remembering fallen heroes well before it was necessitated by the recent attacks on the U.S. Continue reading

Where does the Bible say only clergy can baptize?

Baptism

Where in the Bible does it explicitly state, “Only bishops and priests can baptize and confer the Holy Spirit?” Where explicitly? Nowhere.

So why do we Orthodox Christians believe this? I am addressing this here because someone recently challenged me with just that question, and I realize many Orthodox do not know how to confront this question. Here’s my take. Continue reading