Author: Fr. Lawrence FARLEY

Cult of bareness

The Cult Of Bareness

I cannot be the only one who has had the experience of visiting a non-Orthodox church service and finding it stunningly empty and plain.  After long familiarity with Orthodox worship with its icons, incense, candles, vestments, Gospel books, and crosses, attending such services produces a kind of sensory deprivation, rather […]

Exploring Islam

Exploring Islam

I would like you all to meet a young woman, raised a devout Roman Catholic, who converted to Islam.  Her online story reads in part as follows: “I’m one of the many western converts out there…I grew up in a very traditional orthodox Christian household.  My family was going to […]

Ecclesiastical Gnosticism

Ecclesiastical Gnosticism

There is today in the Orthodox Church a cult of personality—or, more precisely, of personalities, in the plural.  That is, there are a number of men, mostly monastics and wearing the badge of “elder” who have set themselves up as judges and arbiters of Orthodox praxis.  Most of the hubbub […]


Why I Am A Christian (II)

In my previous blog piece, “Why I Am a Christian (I)” I examined the question of why one should believe in the physical Resurrection of Jesus from the dead.  I looked at the essential historical reliability of the Gospels portraits of Jesus and His claims to be God.  I concluded […]


Why I Am A Christian (I)

Many years ago, when I was tucking my eldest daughter into bed, she asked me a question:   “Dad, why do we believe in the Resurrection?”  I have always taught both my daughters to be strong and to think for themselves, and so I was happy to hear the question, and […]


Reflections On An October Event

Halloween these days provides a time for the predictable annual debate about whether or not Christians should participate in Halloween, and many participants in the debate express themselves very strongly.  As we approach that time, I would like to offer a few irenic reflections on the controversial October event. Everyone […]

Pierre Trudeau

Prime Minister Trudeau And Q Spirit

In about 1968, Prime Minister Trudeau (not our current disaster, a previous one) famously declared that “the government has no business in the bedrooms of the nation”.  Even then it was a touch asinine when you really thought about it, for it all depended on precisely what was happening in […]


“Does A Chicken Cry?”: Responding To Transgenderism

On my sainted parents’ graves, I swear the following conversation actually took place. Perplexed Man: “Male gametes—that’s what makes me male.” Transgender Apologist:  “No—your sperm don’t make you male.” PM: “Then what does?” TA: “It’s a constellation.” PM: “In reality, in truth.” TA: “Whose truth are we talking about?” PM: […]


On Baptizing Infants

The recent decision of Archbishop Elpidophoros to baptize the adopted child of an openly gay couple in Greece is only the latest addition to a series of actions which have raised Orthodox eyebrows, coming as it does hard on the heels of his decision to consecrate as bishop an archimandrite […]