Wherefore clad in the sacred vestments of epitrachilion and omophorion, we say, If any man preach unto you any other gospel than that which we have preached unto you, even though an angel from heaven, let him be anathema (Galatians I8:9). As many as are befitting, that pursue after such a diabolical and lawless employment of Freemasonry, and all they that follow unto their infatuation and unto their error, let them be excommuicated and accursed by the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. After death, they shall be unpardoned, indissoluble, and bloated. Groaning and trembling, as Cain, shall they be upon the earth (Genesis 4:14). The earth shall cleave and swallow them up, as Dathan and Abiram (Numbers 16:31-32). The wrath of God shall be upon their heads, and their portion together with Judas the betrayer. An angel of the Lord will prosecute them with a flaming sword and, unto their life’s termination, they will not know of progress. Let their works and toil be unblessed and let them become a cloud of dust, as of a summer threshing-floor. And all they indeed that shall abide still unto their wickedness will have such a recompense. But as many as shall go out from the midst of them and shall be separated, and having spat out their abominable heresy, and shall go afar off from their accursed infatuation, such kind shall receive the wagers of the zealot Phineas; rather let them be blesed and forgiven by the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit, the Only unconfused and undivided Trinity, the One God in nature, and by us His servants.” – The Aphorism Against Freemasonry – St. Cyprian, Archbishop of Cyprus, Martyred in defense against the Turks 1821.
It occasionally bears repeating, that Orthodox are forbidden to be freemasons. Period. No, ifs, ands, buts. Not if we understand it in a certain way. Not if it is this or isn’t that. It’s verboten. Among the various acts condemning participation in masonry are:
- THE ACT OF THE CHURCH OF CYPRUS (1815) – contained in the Rudder
- THE ACT OF THE RUSSIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH ABROAD (1932) – contained in the Rudder
- THE ACT OF THE CHURCH OF GREECE (1933)
- THE ACT OF THE TRUE ORTHODOX CHURCH OF GREECE (1949) – Contained in the Rudder
- THE ACT OF THE RUSSIAN ORTHODOX GREEK CATHOLIC METROPOLIS OF AMERICA (1960) – Now the OCA.
- HOCNA’s PASTORAL ENCYCLICAL
We also know that Patriarch of Constantinople Meletios IV, as well as Athenagoras of unhappy memory were freemasons who brought in truckloads of heresy and apostasy of a kind that fits perfectly into masonry, polluting the communities of orthodox faithful. Subsequent patriarchs in Constantinople and elsewhere would refuse to answer on whether they were masons, but the same heresies and apostasy continues.
Those who persist in masonry and try to claim we misunderstand it, and that it’s compatible with Holy Orthodoxy, fall generally into three categories:
1. First, there are those of lower rank who aren’t familiar with the classic masonic technique of blinds. A blind means that you are told, upon joining, that a certain set of symbols, acts, etc. means a certain thing. At a much higher level, it is explained to you that this was to conceal the truth from the innocent and those who would exploit it, and are given the “true” meaning of the symbols and acts. Then again, at a much higher level (e.g. 33rd degree), you are told again that both the second and first meanings are not the actual meanings, and are given the “real” meanings. This process continues.
2. Second, there are those of higher rank who know it’s incompatible, but view their masonic mission as transcending the requirements of Holy Orthodoxy, or the need to be honest. By the 33rd degree, it is really impossible to escape this category, except by the last method.
3. Lastly, there are those who separate in their minds, the things in which they participate, assent, agree, and perform from what they regard as the self. They can say a creed and not really be involved. They can perform a ritual and not really be engaged. For these people, nothing is truly real or matters deeply. All things are afar off. They are stunted men, semi-men, who do not hold anything as truly sacred, for all their sacred rites.
Masonry is an abomination and anathema to Orthodox Christians. It’s not a subject even open for debate.
Likewise, nationalism is a religion – in form, attitude, and substance. So is ethnocentrism.