Vani, Georgia, June 3, 2020
The United States and various European countries actively fund institutions that sow hatred against the Orthodox Church and promote the LGBT agenda in Georgia, and the country needs to seriously rethink its pro-western orientation, His Eminence Metropolitan Anthony of Vani and Bagdati warned in his Sunday sermon on May 24.
The main points of his homily were published on the diocesan Facebook page.
“Obsessed with the ideas of the neo-communists, their foolishness knows no bounds,” His Eminence preached.
According to the metropolitan, representatives of opposition parties and NGOs funded from the U.S. and Europe constantly incite hatred against the Orthodox Church. “You can’t help thinking that we, liberated from communist traps and in euphoria, are being caressed and deceived,” His Eminence said. “We mistakenly chose the Euro-Atlantic path, aimed at discrediting and fostering abhorrence for the Church in future generations.”
Such organizations and media outlets have “no ideals, no appreciation, just the search for negativity, like a buzzard looking for a carcass in a field,” Met. Anthony said.
Meanwhile, the Georgian Church strives to be a positive force in the nation. In 2014, His Holiness Catholicos-Patriarch Ilia II personally declared May 17 annually to be a Day of Family Strength and Honor for Parents, as a wholesome alternative to the International Day of War on Homophobia on the same day.
Met. Anthony also called for a referendum to be held in Georgia to find out whether Georgians really want to follow a course that “hates the Church and ignores the traditions and sanctity of the family.”
Such views are not uncommon in Georgia. The great Western powers prompt and aggravate a war between traditional, Orthodox values and more liberal, secularized values in Georgia, Archpriest David Isakadze warned last June as LGBT activists gathered outside the government administration building in Tbilisi on the eve of the Tbilisi Pride event.
“It is clearly evident who is controlling the processes in Georgia,” Fr. David said. “We truly want to be an independent country, not in word, but in deed. The U.S. authorities, in the person of the ambassador [Elizabeth Rood—O.C.] directly interfere in our internal affairs. She wants to control the processes here and exacerbate the situation, knocking people against one another,” Fr. David explained at that time.
In 2016, the respected elder Archimandrite Lazar (Abashidze) warned that the fall of communism also brought a new interest in finding a more European way of life, which has brought new trends and pressure to pass new laws that greatly conflict with ancient Georgian traditions rooted in Orthodox Christianity.