On the misinterpretation of Holy Writ

When, however, sociologist or ethicists, without having the Holy Spirit, study the works of the Fathers, they divide and separate them. And I think that this isolated, detached use of quotations from the Fathers-out of the ascetic spirit-in order to support our impure and human-centered thoughts is the greatest heresy. When we take the Fathers out of the spirit of asceticism, of repentance, we divide them. And every division is a change for the worse. All of the heretics did the same. They used the passages without understanding them, without having the prerequisites of interpreting them correctly. We should therefore carry out the “watchword” which prevails in our times – “return to the Fathers” – not only by studying the texts of the Fathers but also by making the effort of acquiring the life of the Fathers. We should live in the holy Church, live with the holy Mysteries and the holy virtues, stop being individuals and start living like persons, as worthy members of Christ.
Metropolitan Hierotheos (Vlachos)


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