• Michael Haldas

Loneliness and Isolation (Sunday, October 15, 2017)


“Social media—from Facebook to Twitter—have made us more densely networked than ever. Yet for all this connectivity, new research suggests that we have never been lonelier (or more narcissistic)—and that this loneliness is making us mentally and physically ill. We have never been more detached from one another, or lonelier.” (Stephen Marche)

“The habits of modern cultures have become attuned to the generalizations of distant bureaucracies. Our loyalties are attached to distant sounds rather than local reality. Neighbors are the most likely strangers in our lives, while true strangers become our “friends.” These are the habits of alienation and loneliness: friends whom one only sees in digitalized form, but never touches.” (Father Stephen Freeman)

“We live in an age when families no longer eat dinner together, and children watch TV, play computer games, and text their friends from their bedrooms. People sit in a cafe with friends, all the while texting or talking to someone else on their cell phones. We have become a people living together in isolation…Even in our spiritual lives we tend to live in isolation. Many reserve their prayers for issues revolving around finances or their health or that of a family member. They rarely think of the importance of corporate prayer with family and friends, apart from the Sunday Liturgy. Prayer is a private matter for them, rarely shared with others.” (Abbot Tryphon)

“Godly life is joyful. Secular life is sorrowful…Not surprisingly, the more secularized we have become, the more sorrowful we have become. Now here is an amazing disconnect. Why is it that America has never been so Christian and yet so joyless? A greater percentage of our population self-identifies as Christian than at any time in our nation’s history, yet we are by all observable phenomena radically depressed. How are we to explain such an anomaly?... While there are many contributing factors to this epidemic of joylessness, I would like to suggest the primary cause: isolation.” (V. Rev. Josiah Trenham, Ph.D.)

“Loneliness is a very powerful feeling. It makes one feel debilitated at best, and hopeless at worse…The sorrow of Christ in the garden was not only because of His impending suffering, but because at that moment He experienced the human emotion of loneliness and it made Him sorrowful.” (Fr. Stavros N. Akrotirianakis)

“Because of our individualistic, self-centered society, many lonely people wonder if anyone cares whether they live or die.” (Life Application Study Bible, 3 John 1:5-6)

“In a world consumed by ever more novel modes of socializing, we have less and less actual society. We live in an accelerating contradiction: the more connected we become, the lonelier we are. We were promised a global village; instead we inhabit the drab cul-de-sacs and endless freeways of a vast suburb of information…social interaction matters. Loneliness and being alone are not the same thing, but both are on the rise. We meet fewer people. We gather less. And when we gather, our bonds are less meaningful and less easy.” (Stephen Marche)

“We need community, yet we are fractured by loneliness. But we were not meant to be alone. The whole New Testament is built around the work of the Holy Spirit to create this new community, the Church, to show the world just how people are supposed to be community together. A person who puts his or her best energies into knowing God will discover that God, as Trinity, is the model for community. But knowing God isn’t the same as knowing about God. A relationship with God is not simply an intellectual pursuit. It requires opening your heart to an intimate knowledge of God founded on personal communion with God Himself.” (Douglas Cramer)

“We live in an age when families no longer eat dinner together, and children watch TV, play computer games, and text their friends from their bedrooms. People sit in a cafe with friends, all the while texting or talking to someone else on their cell phones. We have become a people living together in isolation…Even in our spiritual lives we tend to live in isolation. Many reserve their prayers for issues revolving around finances or their health or that of a family member. They rarely think of the importance of corporate prayer with family and friends, apart from the Sunday Liturgy. Prayer is a private matter for them, rarely shared with others.” (Abbot Tryphon)

“The greatest torment of suffering, particularly in the form of anxiety, is to be alone. Anxiety creates a deep fissure in communion, alienating us from others and trapping us in the confines of self-talk.” (Father Stephen Freeman)