A Nation on the Brink

We as the American people are being called to repentance

The western world has entered a period of decadence and decline, for we’ve departed far from our Christian roots. With the Western world having turned our collective roots on our common historical and cultural Christian heritage, a secular based world-view now reigns dominant. We are now witnessing the ravaging of  our social institutions, our churches have been closed by the pandemic that is sweeping across the world, and racism, together with a massive economic collapse, has sparked nation-wide violence and destruction like never witnessed in our nation’s history.

These are terrible times in which our churches have been forced to close by our state governments, our nation’s economic foundation is in ruins, and racism is raising its ugly head. Is it any wonder all this is contributing to the proliferation of violent demonstrations across our country? Should this all not be a clear reminder of just how far we’ve departed as a people from the biblical image of a God-centered society? Is it not clear that all this is being allowed by God as a wakeup call?

Now is the time we are all being called to repentance, both individually, and as a nation, and return to the true basis of what it means to be “one nation, under God”.  Unless we see a return to God, and a collective nationwide repentance before the Lord, our country, and even the world, will face destruction, and it will be only ourselves who are to blame.

The good news is that we can learn from this national disaster, and begin to make this a better society. Our black brothers and sisters have suffered more from this pandemic than the general population because many of them, due to the inequalities they’ve suffered, accompanied by the poverty that has befallen them because of racism, have been more vulnerable to the Covid-19 virus.

This must be a call to action for the rest of us, that we learn the truth that the words, to “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself’, and that ‘There is no commandment greater than these (Matthew 22:37-39).'” If we truly desire to love God, we must know that loving our neighbor is required of us, for the commandment is a twofold commandment.

If we are to truly heed the call to repentance, we will come out of this pandemic as a people who are united, and where racial and economic disparity is forever put off as the dark side of our common history. And we will come out of this as a people who truly love God, and are forever devoid of hatred and racial disparity.

Love in Christ,
Abbot Tryphon

Photo: Together with Archpriest Moses Berry, my brother from a different mother.

Monday June 1, 2020 / May 19, 2020
Afterfeast of the Ascension. Tone six.
Hieromartyr Patrick, bishop of Prusa, and his companions: Presbyters Acacius, Menander, and Polyenus (362).
Venerable Cornelius, abbot of Komel (Vologda) (1537).
Right-believing Prince Demetrius Donskoy (1389) and Venerable Euphrosyne (Princess Eudocia) of Moscow (1407).
New Hieromartyr Matthias priest (1919).
New Hieromartyr Victor (1937).
New Hieromartyrs Onuphrius, archbishop of Kursk; Anthony, bishop of Belgorod, and with him priests Metrophan, Alexander, Michael, Matthew, Hippolytus, Nicholas, Basil, Nicholas, Maxim, Alexander, Paul, and Paul, and Martyrs Michael and George (1938).
New Hieromartyr Onuphrius, archbishop of Kursk (1938).
New Hieromartyr Valentine (1940).
Venerable Cornelius, abbot of Paleostrov and Valaam (1420).
St. John, prince of Uglich, tonsured as Ignatius (Vologda) (1522).
Venerable Sergius, monk, of Shukhtom (1609).
Martyr Acoluthus of the Thebaid (284-305).
Venerable John, bishop of the Goths in Crimea (787).
Sts. Parthenius and his brother Calogerius (250).
St. Dunstan, archbishop of Canterbury (988) (Celtic & British).
Entrance of St. Nina (Nino), Equal-to-the-Apostles, into Georgia (323) (Georgia).
Monk-martyrs and confessors John, Conon, Jeremias, Cyril, Theoctistus, Barnabas, Maximus, Theognostus, Joseph, Gennadius, Gerasimus, Mark, and Herman of Cyprus, who suffered under the Latins (1231).
Synaxis of Hieromartyrs of Kharkov.
Martyrs Cyriaca and Theotima (311) (Greek).

The Scripture Readings

Matthew 11:27-30

27 All things have been delivered to Me by My Father, and no one knows the Son except the Father. Nor does anyone know the Father except the Son, and the one to whom the Son wills to reveal Him. 28 Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.30 For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”

Acts 21:8-14

8 On the next day we who were Paul’s companions departed and came to Caesarea, and entered the house of Philip the evangelist, who was one of the seven, and stayed with him. 9 Now this man had four virgin daughters who prophesied. 10 And as we stayed many days, a certain prophet named Agabus came down from Judea. 11 When he had come to us, he took Paul’s belt, bound his own hands and feet, and said, “Thus says the Holy Spirit, ‘So shall the Jews at Jerusalem bind the man who owns this belt, and deliver him into the hands of the Gentiles.’ ”

12 Now when we heard these things, both we and those from that place pleaded with him not to go up to Jerusalem. 13 Then Paul answered, “What do you mean by weeping and breaking my heart? For I am ready not only to be bound, but also to die at Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus.”

14 So when he would not be persuaded, we ceased, saying, “The will of the Lord be done.”

John 14:27-15:7

27 Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. 28 You have heard Me say to you, ‘I am going away and coming back to you.’ If you loved Me, you would rejoice because I said, ‘I am going to the Father,’ for My Father is greater than I.

29 “And now I have told you before it comes, that when it does come to pass, you may believe. 30 I will no longer talk much with you,for the ruler of this world is coming, and he has nothing in Me. 31 But that the world may know that I love the Father, and as the Father gave Me commandment, so I do. Arise, let us go from here.

The True Vine

15 “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. 2 Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit. 3 You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you. 4 Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me.

5 “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing. 6 If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned. 7 If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you.

Abbot Tryphon

About Abbot Tryphon

The Very. Rev. Abbot Tryphon is Igumen of All-Merciful Saviour Monastery on Vashon Island, Washington. Situated in the heart of a beautiful forest, surrounded by the Salish Sea, the monastery is reached by ferry from either Seattle, or Tacoma, Washington.


  1. I agree that a National Day of Repentance would be very helpful, but I must confess that I do not see this secular nation doing that. Are there Orthodox prayers that the faithful can pray as we wait for church and political leaders to step up to the plate and plan a day of repentance? There have been many occasions in my life when I have wanted a national day of repentance. There seems to be a great lack of awareness that this is what we need. Lord, have mercy on us and forgive us.

    1. I didn’t suggest a “National Day of Prayer”, although such a collective voice would be wonderful. It would take a country that is already focused on Christ to implement such a day. I am, however, calling all the peoples of the world to repent, whatever country they are a part of.

  2. Amen Fr Tryphon. We have similar problems here in the land down under. Our first nation brothers and sisters, are still being treated like 2nd class citizens. When will we wake up to the injusticies ??
    Brother from a different mother, love it!! One of my favourites I like to use too.
    Yours sincerely, Vitya, Sydney, Australia.

  3. As we deal with the devastation we are now witnessing, we must recognize the depth of wisdom in our Lord’s admonition to love our enemies. The four officers involved in the murder of George Floyd, through their callous indifference to the sanctity of life, have not only torn apart our culture, they also have shredded their own souls. We must pray for their repentance, as well as that of the looters and burners, whose selfishness runs counter to the unselfishness of the honest protesters.

  4. it is happening all over the world. I am from Brazil. and Here also the country is going down to abyss. All around the world civilization is going down. religion cannot save anybody because it is part of the problem. It is very clear that we cannot do anything by trying to save this world. “My kingdown is not from this world”. Our religious societies had being all the time a lie. The War never stoped. Always you had an enemy. Christian doing pogrons to jews, jews rejecting their own massiach, muslins following an ismaelite (false?) prophet, the mours being fighting back to africa, crusades, the fall of Constantinople in the Muslins Caliphade hands. We never had peace. Maybe somebody could imagine somekind of easy life, but there was always somebody being slandered by some sort of adversities and opression.

  5. Medical experts suggest the higher death rates amongst non-whites may be as much to do with the skin’s ability to convert sunlight to vitamin D, and obesity as much as social inequality. I personally don’t know if this true, but we shouldn’t we be careful about adopting the fashionable assumptions that prevail?

  6. When churches and religious places of worship are deemed “NON-ESSENTIAL,” yet Marijuana Shops are deemed “ESSENTIAL”, schools and COLLAGES are closed, people are shelter-in-place, and social gatherings are limited, Antifa groups are infiltrating the large cities just waiting for a social injustice to happen which are seeking to destroy this country. There have always been social injustices, social inequities, and economic disparities. Christ didn’t come to be a KING on Earth. Render to Cesear what is Cesaer and to God to what is God’s. The infitrating groups hide behind their masks. HOLLYWOOD CELeBRity money is used to bail out the arrested, and NYC and NYS no-bail laws return the “criminal elements to our streets. Discernment of the truth and wisdom, and non-group thinking, but individual responsibility is necessary. When Abortion is considered an ESSENTIAL Medical procedure, and having an invasive Medical scan to detect CANCER is Non- ESSENTIAL there is something terribly. Individuals SIN. Individual repentance for individuals commmitting the sins.

  7. Thank you for this post. Our national soul is certainly being revealed during this time of stress. Our young people need to be reminded of some of the Proverbs, such as 22:24-25 Do not make friends with a hot-tempered man,
    do not associate with one easily angered, or you may learn his ways and get yourself ensnared.
    As you wrote in The Morning Offering, p. 137: “Only when the population of a nation has entered into repentance can that nation, as a whole, become a holy people.” And also on p. 128: “Repentance changes our nous, clearing the way for complete union with Christ and making us whole.” May God help us!!!
    Yes, I am all for a national Day of Repentance.
    PS I am not a member of the Orthodox Church yet, but have been attending a local parish for the past year.

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