Who do I believe?

AdminArchbishop Paul's Reflections4 Comments

I received feedback from five persons on my note from last week. They responded to my question, “Who do you look to help you make decisions concerning the truthfulness of what is reported regarding the pandemic?” The common threads from all were: 1) Not to trust or to stay away from Social Media, 2) Some skepticism over what major media sources say (i.e. CNN, FOX, MSNBC, and certain big city newspapers) concerning the facts of the Virus. 3) Seeking out such sources as Major Hospitals (i.e. the Cleveland Clinic). Beyond that, it was hard to find common ground. Someone suggested reading news items from Reuters or BBC overseas (not America) as helpful.

As for myself, I have two Doctors I consult with here in Chicago, whom I have found qualified and helpful in their feed back to me concerning the virus. I also look to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and local county health departments for guidance. I will also look at any research that comes out of places such as the Cleveland Clinic or John Hopkins Medical School. I realize a number of people don’t put a lot of confidence in the CDC, citing past inconsistencies in their statements. However, both the CDC and the county health departments are entrusted to look out for what is best for the health and welfare of American citizens. It is their job to do this. I liken this to the role of Child Protective Services (CPS). This agency is authorized to remove children from homes if child abuse, sexual abuse, or neglect has taken place, and the situation calls for removal. Child Protective Services is not a perfect agency, and I am sure there are flaws and shortcomings in its service delivery at times. But CPS has the authority to act on these cases, while private citizens do not. My only option if I don’t rely on the CDC and local health departments is to trust the opinions of individual doctors who often disagree on this issue. Finally, I think it is best to stay away from social media and blogs from individuals who report opinions. It is the same with major media outlets. It seems in whatever is reported, the perspective the media outlet has on this topic biases it.

What does this have to do with Family Life and the Orthodox Faith? As Orthodox Christians, we are concerned about speaking the truth and not misleading people. I thought I would share this with you to help you better understand my thinking on the topic.

The blessing of the Lord be upon you,

With love in Christ,

Archbishop Paul

4 Comments on “Who do I believe?”

  1. Your Eminence,
    I would agree. It is very hard to know or trust various sources of information.
    Especially from the government or CDC or WHO, or biased and censored social media platforms. They all follow the agenda of the current political party in power.
    As most should know, freedom of speech is a thing of the past, on social media. You are canceled or suspended for voicing an opinion that varies from those in power.
    I suggest do your research and gather information from sources that give a differing opinion. I just read an article from Epoch Times that stated fully vaccinated people are susceptible to catching and spreading the Delta variant of Covid-19.
    Time, hopefully will reveal some truths, but speaking for myself, I do not trust the Government, Dr. Fauci, social media CEO ‘s, along with main stream media that continue to censor opposing opinions and freedom of speech. Nor do l want to be mandated to take an experimental vaccine , when data continues to come forward about its safety and effectiveness…
    God Bless!
    Don Patton jr

  2. Master Bless.

    Seeking the truth is the most important aspect to authentically living a life in Christ (ethos). I wouldn’t have discovered the tradition of our faith without it.

    While I respect your opinion about the CDC& agree that both CPS & the CDC offer positive services, I must also respectfully disagree with the CDC’s current stance on the virus due to political interest.

    3-4 letter agencies sound great upfront, but once an individual is involved with the agency, it becomes clear the amount of bureaucracy that seeps through doing more harm to the individual. (At least, in my personal experience).

    The CDC receives both governmental (tax-payers) and private funding (partners). The partners list is quite disturbing. All this information is on public record, so anyone interested to learn more should visit the CDC organization website under “partners.” These partners have a wide range: Oil/Gas, Energy Corporations, Labs, Pharmaceutical Corporations (such as Pfizer, JJ, Merck, and more), Facebook, Google, University Hospitals, United States Post Office, Banks, Travel, even Starbucks, Coca-Cola, along with Sprint & AT& T Phone Services, etc… One should begin to see how the machine works.

    Can the CDC be considered an ethical & reliable government agency interested in the good of public health when a partner such as McDonald’s makes a donation -OR- is it possible the CDC is more concerned with the best interest of its investors and their stocks?

    More importantly, it’s not as if the Federal Reserve, along with those that invest in stocks, have an endless supply of money. The more money that’s printed, the less value of the dollar, which means more debt for the working poor to continue to be indentured slaves (I mean, servants) of the government…

    Just my thoughts on the subject. Speaking the truth and allowing others to formulate their own opinions to make their own choices is the foundation of our democracy. Free Will for the sake of Love is the greatest blessing to mankind. Without it, salvation would not be possible.

  3. continued…

    To be fair, though, I wonder how many critics of the CDC accept their management of VAERS (Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System)? 11K deaths/illnesses associated with the vaccine? Some people are reporting symptoms of shingles, early signs of dementia, paralysis, stroke, seizures, miscarriages, etc. I believe the famous musician Eric Clapton lost movement on the right side of his body for several weeks.

    Is the CDC’s intervention making things worse or better at this point? It seems like a game…
    Simon says “Put your masks on”
    Simon says “Take your masks off”

    The longer this continues, the more people will look for someone to blame. Sometimes you hear people say it’s the un-vaccinated causing the mutations. Others say it’s the vaccinated causing the mutations. Viruses want to live, so it’s unlikely to kill the host at this point. We’re talking about a 99.95% survival rate for those under the age of 70. The percentage for survival increases according to age. If we follow the pattern of the flu, Covid19 behaves the same way with spikes during flu season.

    It’s especially hurtful to see the way children are being taken advantage of with this situation. They have the strongest immune system out of all of us and yet they’re being conditioned that they’re full of germs & can kill someone just by breathing. More importantly, what kind of mental toll is this taking on children? Based on what I read, depression and suicide increased dramatically. Children need human connection by seeing the face of others. It’s how God wired us.

    My question remains, what is the end game? Masks forever until everyone is vaccinated? Masks during every flu/covid variant season?

    I’m glad Archbishop Paul mentioned the Cleveland Clinic study. Our parish is smaller than the 50K participants in it. I haven’t heard of the delta variant causing a problem in that population as of yet.

  4. Your Eminence:
    I am grateful for your position on this subject; I agree with you. I am newly chrismated into the Church and have been a little discouraged by some of the anti-science, conspiracy theorists within Orthodoxy. I had to leave a Facebook group dedicated to our faith because many were misrepresenting how the VAERS system works and even telling others to repent if they have been vaccinated. It is just all very frustrating. It seems many of these individuals forget this is not an American pandemic; it is a global pandemic.

    Anyway, thank you very much for the reasonable and spiritual approach you have taken during these challenging months.


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