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Christ_PanselinosOur Savior once said, “And if thy right hand scandalize thee, cut it off, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members perish, and not that thy whole body be cast into gehenna” (Matt 5:30). One interpretation of this passage is that even if it is someone very close to you that leads you into obvious sin, you are to cut them off and separate yourself from them,

One can receive counsels from friends, relatives and even spiritual fathers that are obvious violations of the law of God and order of the Church. How many today remain in communion with heresy or perhaps some moral transgression because of such evil counsel? We see not a few pseudo elders that prevent their spiritual children from breaking with the heresy of ecumenism by their spiritual counsel that is opposition to the basic teachings of the Church. During this perilous era of confusion and falsehood, it is essential that all Christians cultivate a correct understanding of the Church in order to be safeguarded. Satan seeks to deceive even the very elect.

There is a helpful counsel of Saint Poemen that deals with the very difficult predicament of a spiritual father that caused spiritual harm.

A brother asked Poemen, ‘I am suffering damage to my soul by being with my abba, What do you advise me to do? Should I continue to stay with him?’ Poemen knew that his soul was being harmed by his abba, and he was surprised that he even asked whether he ought to stay with him. He said to him, ‘If you want to stay with him, do so.’ The brother went away and stayed with his abba. But he came a second time to Poemen, and said, ‘My soul is very heavy.’ But Poemen did not say him, ‘Leave your abba.’ He came a third time, and said, ‘Indeed, I can no longer stay with him.’ Then Poemen said, ‘Now you are saved, go, and stay with him no longer.’ He went on, ‘If you see your soul being harmed by something there is no need to ask what to do. What we should ask about rather is our secret thoughts, to get them tested by others. But there is no need to ask about obvious sins; they must be cut off at once.’

The lesson is clear, there are sins and relationships that must be cut off at once for the sake of spiritual survival.

1st Ecumenical Council_CretanSchool