Holy Mount Athos, October 4, 2016
Dochiariou Monastery (the Monastery of the Holy Archangels) on Holy Mount Athos was revived in the 1970s through the efforts of its abbot Archimandrite Gregorios, with the brethren. In the course of the shooting of the film, “Athos—for Life!” the elder agreed to give an interview with the crew of Sobor.by dedicated to the defense of life.
Archimandrite Gregorios, Abbot of Dochiariou Monastery on Mt. Athos:
“First of all, it is necessary to explain theologically why the Church rejects abortion. The devil wanted to kill Adam and Eve lest the human race should procreate. Satan was envious of the honor the Lord granted to man. Angels, demons and men are the creation of God, but the Creator placed man at the very peak of creation. Thus, when man kills a baby either in the mother’s womb or after his birth or by taking abortives he does the devil’s work. The evil one wanted to destroy humanity and therefore an individual who performs an abortion does the same.
The worst thing about abortions is that these babies die unbaptized. He who commits such sins as abortion is like a demon, and he will receive a severe punishment because this sin appears before the face of God. So by this sin we insult God Himself Who blessed this child to be conceived and remain in his mother’s womb. The conception and birth of a human being are not just the result of the intimate relationship between his parents—they are the work of God.
More than once I met couples who had no obstacles to having children from the medical point of view but they remained childless—God did not grant them children. Why? This is known to Him alone. That is why we need to respect the creations who are called to life by the will of God.
Abortion is the sin of our age. And as Orthodox Christians we must organize a sort of a resistance on this front in order to bring the heavy burden of this sin to people’s notice. Even animals don’t commit such sins. Even animals are tender and love their babies.
In order to achieve all of this, people must return to Christ and live in repentance. Repentance changes our way of life. This is exactly what repentance means—changing one’s way of life. And I wish you and your family members to be protected by God from committing such sins, and from having abortions.”