Un-labelled Halal meat for sale in UK supermarkets



  • [quote author=ophadece link=topic=9784.msg120159#msg120159 date=1286183493]
    Dear Hezekiel,
    I am not sure really what you intend to say. I don't know who anba Youssef is, or where he serves, but I won't be surprised if he serves in Egypt. Without being judgmental or anything, sometimes priests in Egypt, and maybe in the diaspora as well, make things easy for their flock to decrease their anxiety and allow them to carry on with their lives without too much guilt....Now is satan a god? In some sense, it is yes. Would you really eat anything offered to satan? With a thankful attitude? I am afraid if you would, God may not be pleased with that. It is not a matter of drawing a sign of the Cross on the filth and eating it...

    Hi Ophadece,

    His Grace Bishop Youssef is the General Bishop of the Southern United States.Here is a small Bio:

    "Listening to the call of the Lord Jesus Christ, His Grace Bishop Youssef entered the monastic life in 1986 at the El-Souryan Monastery. He was ordained into the priesthood in 1988. Then in 1989, he came to the United States under the auspices of His Holiness Pope Shenouda III, the 117th Pope of the Holy See of St. Mark. He was appointed resident priest to serve the Coptic congregation of St. Mary Church in Dallas/Fort Worth.In 1992, His Grace was ordained as General Bishop and in 1993, His Grace was appointed to oversee the Southern Coptic Diocese. In 1995, His Grace was enthroned as the first Bishop of the Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States"

    The answers that one finds at the "Q's and A's" section of Suscopts.org are His Grace's.They are brilliant. I am sure you find them enlightening and edifying.I asked him to clarify about this halal food issue, because all of a sudden,I wasn't sure. I posted his reply here so that we all read it. You see, he is here in the diaspora and he could have advised  me to avoid halal food compeletly ( as I have the choice to buy non-halal food), because the scriptures speak against it. But he did not. He has outlined those foods that are lawful and unlawful in accordance with the scriptures. In other words, he made it clear to us the position of the COC.However, I am not saying that we all should go ahead and buy Halal food as we please.We have the choice to make and whatever choice that is, it is lawful.That is what I understand.

    You have quoted few stories from the OT. I agree, but that was the OT with its Mosaic laws. Also, I would not consume food that is offered to Satan , because Satan is real, whereas the offer to idols is an offer to nothing. BTW, I certainly do believe that any halal food that I consume is totally cleansed and blessed, if I invoke the name of the most Holy High Trinity and One God.

    You say "It is also taught that whatever you eat with thankfulness and good faith is right, but just take care of the weaker soul next to you"> . In the days of St Paul,where the worship of idols and the preaching of the Gospel were competing  and going side by side, what you are saying above may make sense,but in today's context, who is the weaker soul that would succumb to sin, just because I eat Halal food?
  • Hez,

    Idols are a veiled presence of Satan.  They are Satan's emblems and images.  They are part of his methodology to disuade the faithful.  Idols come in different forms--sometimes the 'almighty dollar' (in the USA) and in the UK 'the almighty pound sterling'.

    I would not discount idols as being 'nothing'.  They are something.
  • Hezekiel,

    Everyone is entitled to their opinion I guess, but your opinion is not that of the Fathers of the Church.

    I also think that you misunderstand what is meant when it is said that the idols are nothing. They certainly are demonic, and the demonic is real.

    This is why the Fathers are almost unanimous in insisting from the beginning of the Church that we should avoid food offered to false gods.

    It is not my intent to try and convince those who have a different opinion. But I do note that in the UK there are very many Christians indeed who are united in their abhorrence of such food.

    Father Peter
  • ilovesaintmark,

    Yes, I agree with that, but I meant  in relation to the offering of food as HG Bishop Youssef said " St. Paul answered this and said, there is no god other than the True God, so even if this meat if offered to other god, it is offered to nothing "
  • Father,bless

    I have posted a reply from HG. I am not speaking my own opinion.
  • Well as far as I can see we are all responsible to study the Fathers and follow their teaching.

    If you wish to find a reason to eat this food then you have one.

    Perhaps the situation is different in the UK? Here it is clear that a very large number of Christians do not want to eat meat offered to the Muslim god, Allah. I do not believe that the Muslim god, Allah, is nothing. This has united Christians from a wide variety of backgrounds.

    There are other passages in the New Testament which describe these other gods.

    Father Peter
  • Hez,

    I will send you a different reply by PM.
  • [quote author=Pi Onkh link=topic=9784.msg120050#msg120050 date=1285897316]
    Would eating food offered to other Gods be considered the same as eating food "blessed" in the name of another God? I really don't think it would be considered an "offering"?

    I see you have referenced on a few occasions what the Ethiopian Church do in this matter. I'm sure i don't have to remind you Father that we are not the Ethiopian Orthodox Church,and while we are sister churches and there is constant dialog,love and respect between us, there are still MANY differences between our churches. This also applies to other sister churches not just the Ethiopians. I would rather Priests or Bishops from the Coptic Orthodox church give their opinions on this matter, but as Hezekiel had said there is no answers on the suscopts website, could this mean that this really is not an issue?

    Sorry Pionkh if my post seemed hard. I didnt mean to accuse you of anything.

    To be fair to you, i did ask a bishop within the Church, and they did not seem to react the same way as Fr. Peter has. I don't think therefore they see this as a problem.

    If i take a moment to look at why I felt strongly about this issue , it is because I hate other people's religion being forced on me which is I why I supported this thread, but if you are looking at this from a spiritual perspective, perhaps we are in fact making a big deal out of nothing.

  • I did not notice this thread before. I have a few comments and questions.

    Since we do acknowledge any of the so-called gods of these other faiths or any other god, therefore, the foods offered to their gods are only offered to the figments of their own imaginations.

    With all due respect to Bishop Youssef or anybody else, this sentence seems to be a contradiction. Is Bishop Youssef saying "we do not acknowledge any of these so-called gods"? If he is saying that we do acknowledge the existence of these gods, how can we say it is a figment of their (the other religionists) own imagination?

    I guess it becomes an issue on how do we define god and how do we define an idol. There is only one God who has a divine nature in himself. This is the Trinity. The other gods are typically called idols. We cannot ignore the fact that Psalm 82 alludes to the existence of idols. They are not simply figments of imagination, but the existence of some non-divine, non-physical, ontological being or spirit. In addition, Psalm 82:6, says followers of the True God are also called "gods" and "children of the Most High". These are gods by adoption. Most likely, Psalm 82:6 refers to kings who were considered gods, who minister oppression to the weak and defend the unjust (as we can see from verses 2-4). One of these gods who inherited the title "god" can become the object of sacrifices. These too, which are humans that become gods, are not a figment of imagination.

    There is a difference between eating a hamburger with a picture of an imaginary god and eating a hamburger that was prayed on by people who worship an idol. The first seems to be what Bishop Youssef is talking about. The latter is explicitly forbidden in the Old Testament, New Testament and Patristic writings.

    The question that remains is whether the Allah of Islam is an idol or not. At the very least, no one will rationally argue that Allah is the God of Christianity. By default then, we are left with 4 possibilities. Islam's Allah is either (1) a non-physical spirit or idol that has a following of worshipers, (2) a demon disguised as a god, (3) a human god by adoption, or (4) a figment of Muhammad's imagination. We can rule out #3 since no Muslim or Christian will make that claim.  In Christianity, there is no real difference between #1 and #2. Both describe a spiritual or non-physical being. Claims #1 and #2, describe a spiritual being that really exists. Claim #4 is a possibility. Mohammad may have been an undiagnosed schizophrenic. But if #4 is true, then Islam's Allah doesn't exist. There is no consensus among Christians on how to view Islam's Allah. If #1 and #2 is a possibility, then halal meat IS eating food sacrificed to idols. If #4 is true, then halal meat is NOT eating food sacrificed to idols.

    In regards to meat products, the following are considered unlawful:
    any kind of pork (emphasis mine)
    animals that were dead prior to slaughtering
    animals not slaughtered properly
    animals not slaughtered in the name of Allah (emphasis mine)
    any kind of blood by products
    carnivorous animals
    birds of prey
    land animals without external ears

    Unlawful for whom? Christians or Muslims? It seems this list is food that is unlawful for Muslims. But the context implied that this list is for Christians. Which one is it?
  • Matthew 15:11
    "Not what goes into the mouth defiles a man; but what comes out of the mouth, this defiles a man.”

    I'm not saying that we should go seeking halal food to eat, but I personally don't think we are sinning or worshiping the god of islam if we eat it by accident. But I could be completely wrong. In that case, forgive me for my ignorance.
  • I should have listened to my wife. She always scolds me for eating at our local arab market, I told her that it does not matter who blesses the food, that the blessing of Christ supersedes that. I am so wrong in my thinking, thank you for making me aware of this, although I should have listened to my wife....and when my Abouna says to listen to my wife.
  • I no longer eat lamb because it is all contaminated by being offered to Allah. Almost all New Zealand lamb is now slaughtered by Muslim companies who have come in and taken over the whole industry.

    If I find a local English butcher then I will buy lamb if he has slaughtered it.

    Muslims laugh at us in the UK because they know that they have managed to make many people eat meat offered to Allah, and they believe it is but one step towards dhimmitude.

    If we don't care then we deserve nothing better.
  • [quote author=Father Peter link=topic=9784.msg119927#msg119927 date=1285707395]
    His Grace Metropolitan Seraphim has posted a message about the issue of halal meat being sold un-labelled in our UK supermarkets.


    He says...

    For Christians to eat food blessed in any name other than the ‘Father, Son and Holy Spirit, One God’, would be idolatrous and it might even be construed that by passive acceptance the recipient has in some measure consented to the kalima, or Islamic declaration of faith.

    I do believe, as does His Grace, that this is a most serious matter. I have already written to many organisations and businesses, which I will describe in another post. And I will offer a template which others may wish to use or amend to make their own representations.

    Father Peter

    Hi Fr.
    Although I agree with the perspective the BOC has on eating halal meat by Orthodox Christians, I just have a small question:

    If we should only eat meat that has been blessed in the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, then why cannot the Lord's Name also bless Halal meat for us?

    So, if there is any meat that is halal, why can I not eat it if I did the sign of the cross on it?

  • Actually, the other day I went to buy lamb for the family.  I saw it had halal on it.  I walked over to the manager that this was improper to shove someone's religion down my throat.  He had me fill out a form to send to the home office.  He said he will make every effort.  Two weeks later, there was American slaughtered, non-halal lamb on the shelf.  I snatched it up, and proceeded to the front desk and gave a congratulatory comment for the manager and his consideration. (I wanted to reinforce his good deed).
  • Why just meat? Nearly every food in america is Kosher in some way. Kosher does not follow OT as most people think but it follows talmudic law which supersedes the mosaic law. I would think that eating anything kosher would be idolatrous. Jews are worse than muslims, much worse in their idolatry.
  • Ekhrestos anesty
    Sorry to complicate things, but drawing the sign of the Cross on a porn movie doesn't make it less sinful.. drawing the sign of the Cross on meat during fasting doesn't make it blessed (in fact it's sad some Coptic priests encourage this on a few occasions not of course mentioning those who are sick or any other exceptions).. drawing the sign of the Cross on iPad doesn't make it an ajbeya... etc
  • [quote author=Ioannes link=topic=9784.msg155324#msg155324 date=1336430534]
    Why just meat? Nearly every food in america is Kosher in some way. Kosher does not follow OT as most people think but it follows talmudic law which supersedes the mosaic law. I would think that eating anything kosher would be idolatrous. Jews are worse than muslims, much worse in their idolatry.

    The difference is Islamic Shariya prohibits "Food over which Allah's name is not pronounced (or at least not in a name other than Allah" Quran 6:121. For food to be Halal in Islam, it must be cooked or prayed over with Allah's name. Reference

    In contrast, kosher foods simply ensure no meat with milk (among other dietary rules). In Judaism, in order for wine to be kosher or permissible, it can not be the wine of libation "wine that may have been dedicated to idolatrous practices".  Non-Biblical, rabbinic kosher rules expand this by including all non-Jewish wine or "wine that while not produced for idolatrous purposes may otherwise have been poured for such a purpose or alternatively when consumed will lead to intermarriage". A little over the top, wouldn't you say? Reference

    The Christian idea is simple. Don't eat food offered to idols. Halal-certified meat is offered to Allah (which as we discussed before is offered to demons). Kosher-certified meat is not specifically offered to Yahweh (or Adonai or any other Jewish names for God) but is specifically certified not offered to idols. The other difference is the Muslim Allah is considered demonic. The Jewish Yahweh is the True God. So even if kosher food is offered to God, it is not forbidden to the Christian since the Jewish God is an early revelation of the True God.

    I hope I didn't confuse things.
  • I think you made it very clear, however, the jews do not worship the same God that we do. Their mosaic law was replaced by talmudic law, they reject God in place of another. I would venture to say that they too worship our adversary the devil, based on my study of modern judaism, which is a far cry from OT judaism. I am not sure the same rules of eating halal meat apply to kosher foods though. Still, it is based on talmudic law, this same talmudic teaching blasphemes Christ, St. Mary, and Christianity as a whole, so that is why I inquire about this.
  • You make a good point Ioannes. Maybe modern Judaism has become demonic. Maybe they have replaced God with another. But what other god? Is it a real god? The answer maybe more philosophical than factual. If modern Judaism does factually have another god, the final question becomes "does Kosher certification mean the food was prayed or offered to this other god?". I'm not so sure it does. If it doesn't than there is nothing wrong with Kosher certified food.
  • Jews have reject God's plan for them and so He also rejected them ....

    Would we then take a blessing from those whom God has rejected?
  • This forum is full of legalistic nonsense.... We all worship the same God, whether Buddhist, jew, Muslim Christian or whatever.... its not what goes into a person that makes them unclean..
  • Ekhrestos anesty
    No zandali, we don't worship the same god...
  • In fact it is illogical that we worship the same god.
    The Christian God (our god) is triune, that is one of his attributes.
    Allah is not; indeed this is a source of the Muslims' mockery for us.

    You don't necessarily need to give up halal meat, but this view of "everyone's the same, everyone's right" is very dangerous. It is relativist and postmodernist.
  • Whatever you say dude
  • I think that it is the settled opinion of all Orthodox that the god of Islam and Buddhism is NOT the same as the Holy and Consubstantial Trinity.
  • [quote author=zandali link=topic=9784.msg155443#msg155443 date=1336834561]
    Whatever you say dude

    If it were the "same god" as you assert, why is this same God telling Christian husbands and wives to submit to one another, then telling Mohammed that women are domesticated animals?(Tabari IX:113)

    There are many other examples of these contradictions, are you meaning to tell me that our God is a trickster? Telling one religion one thing, then telling another something completely different? If God tells us all the same thing then there would undoubtedly be less conflict.

    So your statement is a very lacking one indeed, you say it, then reply "whatever you say dude" as opposed to some credible sources to back up what you claim. But then again, there are no credible sources to attest to your syncratic ideas.
  • [quote author=zandali link=topic=9784.msg155443#msg155443 date=1336834561]
    Whatever you say dude

    Zandali, to say it is the same God is to offend all of these traditions rather than appease them since you are saying the same God told Guatama Buddha that there was no need to worship God, came to Earth in human form proclaiing that Jesus is God, then told Muslims that he was not Jesus.

    If you are saying that it is one God that did all this then you are saying we are all wrong since one God could not do all of this and still be all loving.
  • You obviously speak from a Christian perspective, but its incredibly arrogant to say that you've got the monopoly on the truth, and that everyone else is wrong. I think God alone knows the truth and that all religions are essentially man made, and contain varying degrees of that truth.... Your trinity for instance took your church hundreds of years to decide that formula... Jesus certainly never spoke of any trinity. That's just a for instance....
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