I don’t need to tell any of you that the pro-life movement suffered its share of losses over the year: Ireland voted to allow abortion; Planned Parenthood still chugs along, the Republicans too obstinate or cowardly to defund them; the totalitarian Canada summer jobs program attestation prevented thousands of employers and students from participating in the program; and abortion drug Mifegymiso was pushed across the country. However, 2019 is a new year, and presents an opportunity for us to resume the fight all the more invigorated. For now, let us be grateful for what we did accomplish in 2018. Millions of pro-lifers across the world have been working tirelessly to protect the preborn and, when our efforts pay off, the fruits can be very, very sweet. Here are my top ten pro-life victories of 2018 (admittedly heavily weighted in favour of victories more proximate to myself): #10: Manitoba rejected bubble zones When Manitoba NDP MLA Nahanni Fontaine tabled Bill 200, a private member’s bill which would establish bubble zones around abortion facilities, there was fear that Manitoba would become the sixth province to restrict pro-lifers’ right to protest. Manitoban politicians, however, chose to stand up for free speech. PC Premier Brian Pallister accused Fontaine of being “willing to invoke the hammer of government to stop people from exercising freedoms that weRead more

The Council of Bishops of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, gathered at the Holy Dormition Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra on November 13, 2018, and after hearing His Beatitude Metropolitan Onufriy of Kyiv and All Ukraine discuss the challenges that have arisen in recent times before the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, adopted the following: 1. The Ukrainian Orthodox Church, which is canonical and recognised by the Local Orthodox Churches, while serving its ministry to God and to the people of Ukraine, fundamentally supports independence and territorial integrity of Ukraine. The Ukrainian Orthodox Church is present in all regions of Ukraine and unites both controlled and uncontrolled territories of the Ukrainian state, experiencing  all the joys and sufferings together with its citizens. 2. The Ukrainian Orthodox Church is endowed with all the rights of independence and self-rule, which today are needed for fruitful service to God and the people of Ukraine. 3. The Ukrainian Orthodox Church has consistently advocated the healing of the schism, for the restoration of Church unity, that is, for a single Church. However, the restoration of the unity of Ukrainian Orthodoxy should not mean the transformation of the Church into an element of politics or propaganda, as this contradicts the nature of the Church. The Church is convinced that the overcoming of Church separation should take place without the intervention of state,Read more

Does Sharia have its place in Europe? If so, under which conditions? These are the questions currently facing the bodies of the Council of Europe. Up to the 18 December 2018, the European Court of Human Rights considered that Sharia law is, in its very principle, incompatible with the values of democracy and human rights. This is no longer the case today: the Court is now accepting its application in Europe under certain conditions, unfortunately unclear. In 2003, the ECHR had validated the dissolution of an Islamist political party –despite its victory in the elections– on the grounds that it wanted to establish Sharia law in Turkey. The Strasbourg judges then concluded, bluntly, “that sharia is incompatible with the fundamental principles of democracy” and with the standards of the European Convention on Human Rights (Refah Partisi and Others v. Turkey, 13 February 2003). Yet, in its Molla Sali v. Greece case, the Court failed to reiterate this condemnation in principle of sharia, and accepted its application on the margins of Greek common law. This can be explained firstly by the fact that the application of sharia law in Greece is not new. Inherited from the Ottoman Empire, it continued to apply to Muslim populations under Greek jurisdiction after the recapture of Western Thrace. The treaties of Sèvres (1920) and LausanneRead more

Foreword The issue of autocephaly for the Orthodox Church in Ukraine which has stirred up the contemporary Orthodox community (not only the Russian Orthodox Church but also universal Orthodoxy as a whole), is being addressed by virtue of referring to ancient regulatory legal acts establishing the boundaries of jurisdiction of the Patriarch of Moscow. The popular science essay by priest Mikhail Zheltov “Historical canonical foundations of the unity of the Russian Church” [2] focuses on two canonical documents: Decisions of the Constantinople Council of Eastern Patriarchs of 1593 (on the boundaries of the Moscow Patriarchate founded in 1589) and the letter of Patriarch Dionysius of 1686 (on the transfer of the Kiev Metropolia of Patriarchate of Constantinople “under the supervision” of the Patriarch of Moscow). Despite the high level of scholarly priest M. Zheltov’s erudition, his article came in for a great deal of fair and reasoned criticism. It’s problematic to agree to the conclusions of Fr. Mikhail due to their being questionable. On the other hand, the negative conclusions on the meaning and content of the ancient acts do not imply at all that the Moscow Patriarchate does not currently have canonical jurisdiction over the Kiev Metropolitanate. However, the grounds for this jurisdiction are not provided for by the documents of 1593 and 1686 years, but by the 17thRead more