Metropolitan Anthony (Pakanich) on How Christians Should Deal with News

There are many problems in constantly waiting for news. These problems affect both secular people and church people. Especially church people, who, it would seem, should completely rely on God's will. But here it's different.

People get so used to news that they can no longer live in peace without it. At the same time, they forget that the presentation of news in the media is sometimes very far from an adequate transmission of information.

Let’s try to abstract and read the news as if from the outside, without involvement. What will we see? A catchy headline that often manipulates the reader’s mind from the very first words: puts the “correct” accents, or even worse – immediately, even before reading the news piece itself, issues a verdict. And it’s not uncommon for a headline to not match the essence of what is said in the text itself. But the impression has already been created and the reader is ready to accept the information in the right light (in the “right” way, of course, for the one who wrote or, rather, ordered this news piece).

And at the same time, newsmakers play on people’s expectations, aspirations, desires, passing off wishful thinking or, conversely, exaggerating where everything is not so terrible (depending on the need of those who want to form this or that public reaction).

Is there really no real news? Of course there is. But think about how often do we ourselves, retelling an event to our acquaintances, adhere to accuracy in describing what happened? After all, we often embellish something or, on the contrary, denigrate it. And how often do we adjust the facts to give the appearance of what we would like [to be true]? Sometimes we don’t even notice how we distort realities to please some of our impulses. But it’s not only with our acquaintances – indeed, sometimes we ourselves are ready to convince ourselves of anything. Alas, such is the property of fallen human nature: “all men are liars,” says the psalmist (Ps. 116:11).

Only the Lord can be absolutely honest. But with people it’s a little more difficult. This should always be kept in mind when absorbing any information. Approach it with restraint, find manipulations, distortions, etc. But the most important thing is not to get involved. After all, we remember that without God’s will nothing can happen to us (Luke 21:18), which means that everything that happens to us and to the whole world takes place exclusively by God’s Providence. It is only important to accept His will with humility – and then no news will frighten us or mislead us.

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