I would like to begin by wishing all of you God's blessings in the new year. May you and your loved ones know the love of God as you continue to live lives of grateful obedience in response to his grace.

December was something of a slow month for me, as it is for many of us. During the holidays people are shopping for gifts and planning events with family and friends. We were privileged to enjoy a visit from my niece, her husband, and their young daughter three days after Christmas, although they were delayed by two days because of the storm that swept through the middle of North America that weekend. My personal health continues to improve, as the chronic pain in my shoulders gradually diminishes. Thank you for your prayers for healing.

My big news this month is that InterVarsity Press, publisher of Political Visions and Illusions, has just offered to publish my next book, which I have given the provisional title, Citizenship Without Illusions. As the title implies, this is a sequel to my first book and will flesh out its principles for fulfilling the office of citizen. For the next months writing this book will take up much of my time. This means that my blog posts and other writings will likely decrease in frequency.

Last August, when Mikhail Gorbachev died, I noted it briefly and promised to revisit his legacy in a future post. Then the Queen died, and my time and energies were taken up following the events surrounding her passing. This month I finally turned my attention to Russia and wrote the following: Gorbachev, Putin, and the toxic cycle of Russian leadership. For centuries Russia has vacillated between chaos and tyranny, its worst leaders holding the country together with methods ranging from the harsh to the cruel. Gorbachev fit the mould of the reforming tsar, most resembling Alexander II, who freed the serfs in 1861. Putin is more clearly in the tradition of Nicholas I, Alexander III, Lenin, and Stalin. This has too often left Russia's neighbours in a precarious position.

Many of us were appalled at the events of 8 January in the Brazilian capital city of Brasília, where supporters of former president Jair Bolsonaro stormed the buildings housing the Congress, the Presidency, and the Supreme Federal Tribunal, the nation's highest court. I had stood outside these buildings during my visit in 2016. The resemblance to the events in Washington, DC, two years and two days earlier was too evident to ignore. Here is my take on the relationship between the two: An American virus infects Brazil. In recent years I have grown to love the people of Brazil who have been most hospitable to me and have expressed so much appreciation for my work. It grieves me to see the events of the past weekend which have only convinced me further that Brazilians deserve better than this. Que Deus tenha misericórdia do povo brasileiro! May God have mercy on Brazil's people!

Next month I will be travelling to the Pittsburgh area to speak at two places. The first will be Trinity School for Ministry, in Ambridge, Pennsylvania, an independent Anglican seminary where my first book has been used for years in theological ethics courses. A good friend of mine from my graduate student days teaches there, and I look forward to renewing our friendship in person. The second venue will be Geneva College in Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania, an institution operated by the Reformed Presbyterian Church of North America, whose members educated my father in Cyprus some eight decades ago. At both institutions I will be speaking on political ideologies, and I will also talk about my work with the Psalms at Trinity. I've not done much travelling since the start of the pandemic three years ago, and I look forward to being with my audience in person rather than viewing them through a screen.

Finally, in December the Politics Network of UCCF: The Christian Unions in the United Kingdom published my second article in a year-long series on political ideologies. This one was titled, Socialism and pluriformity.

Thanks once again to all of you who responded to my year-end appeal by contributing financially to my work with Global Scholars Canada. A special thanks to those of you who have shifted to a monthly giving plan, which enables our administrators to budget for the coming year. GSC's page for giving can be found here. Once you are in the page, scroll down to the heading marked DONATION DETAILS, and then choose one of the options under FUND. Americans may donate through our sister organization in the US. Thank you so much!

Yours in the service of God's kingdom,

David Koyzis, Global Scholar


1 comment:

Bill said...

I've just finished re-reading Political Visions and Illusions. I've very much benefited from doing so. I was a member of the Scottish National Party, which was not a Nationalist party, but the National Party of Scotland. I left and joined Plaid Cymru what I came to Wales in 2016. I left it when it adopted Gender ideology. The SNP Government in Scotland is on a steady path to totalitarianism with its Hate Speech Law which even extends to within the home, and its adoption or Queer Theory and Critical Race Theory in its Education Curriculum while denying parents the right to withdraw their children.

The Labour Party Government of Wales is also on a road to totalitarianism with its Education policies, LGBT+ Policy which forces anti-heteronormativity on the nation. It's very much following Scotland's lead.

I can't be a member of any political party now because of their policies.


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