Κατηγορία

In English

still-g-UPS

Be still and know God (Fr. Stephen Freeman)

Κατηγορίες: In English

There is a point of stillness within us, though we rarely recognize it. We inhabit the world of our thoughts and feelings and rarely find them to be quiet. Almost nothing challenges the “normalcy” of this noisy world – almost everything we encounter is aimed towards it and markets itself with this reality in mind. Not so the gospel. Christ consistently and persistently speaks past the noise in a person’s head. He addresses the point of stillness. The noise of our thoughts and feelings is described by the fathers as “the passions.” They are the products of our inner distortions. We do not actually “choose” most things, that is, what we acquire is not in fact a product of the will. Rather, what we experience ...

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JJackson_AgiorosA

The Mystery of Art by Jonathan Jackson (Dr. Nikolaos Koios)

Κατηγορίες: In English

In Greece, our knowledge of Hollywood stars is restricted almost exclusively to watching them at the cinema or on television. Jonathan Jackson, however, has broken this pattern. He came to Greece, the cradle of Orthodoxy, in order to speak and to describe his own journey into Orthodoxy. This is of great symbolic and substantive importance for us Greeks. It’s also of great value- symbolic and substantive- for the USA. A young man, successful in the world of entertainment, a member of a globalized, consumer society, received the call of God where it found him, in his profession as an actor, and he responded to it. He opened his heart to the truth and allowed Light to fill it. He had ...

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wane

When does it wane? (Saint Isaac the Syrian)

Κατηγορίες: In English

Zeal is the dog which guards the law of God, which is virtue. Like a fiery furnace, zealous people heat up, like the Cherubim and are on the lookout at every moment for the traps and attacks of the evil spirits. Zeal wanes when people don’t believe in divine providence and forget God. There is a cooling of zeal when the desire for virtue lessens, when we trust in ourselves and stop fearing the demons.

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deka-leproi

Sermon on Gratitude (Metropolitan Anthony Bloom)

Κατηγορίες: In English

17 December 1989 In the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost. Ten lepers came to the Lord; ten men who were ritually unclean and therefore, ritually rejected by their community, unable to attend the common worship of the Temple, unable to come near the habitations of men; and unclean also in the eyes of men because their sickness could be transmitted to others: others could become impure, others could be sick unto death. They came to Christ and stood afar off because they knew that they had no right to come near, to touch Him as had the woman who had an issue of blood and who had been healed. From afar they cried for mercy, and the Lord ...

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How-to-Make-Friends-at-Church

How to Make Friends at Church (Elizabeth Mainson)

Κατηγορίες: In English

Some time ago, I was approached by a new parishioner, after Liturgy, with a question, “How do I become closer to the people at church?”  Shocked and saddened that she even had to ask that question (such implications!), I hurriedly mumbled something about her volunteering.  And then I thought, and thought, and thought, through the night, the next day, weeks passed.  How does one make friends, true friends?  Sometimes life is so superficial.  We kiss and say, “Hello.  How are you?”  But we don’t mean it.  Or maybe we even do, but only on the surface.  How do you break through that barrier and truly get someone to care about you?  Well, you need to do several things. First, pray.  God ...

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dorotheos-2-UPS

Cut off the passions before the soul becomes accustomed to them – 2 (Saint Abba Dorotheos)

Κατηγορίες: In English

When I was in the coenobium, the Abbot, with the consent of the Elders, made me guest-master. I was, at the time, recovering from a serious illness. Strangers came and I stayed up with them; camel-drivers arrived and I looked after them. And there were lots of times when I was just about to go to sleep after all this when something would crop up and they’d rouse me again. Then it would be time for the vigil and, before I’d had time to get to sleep, the canonarch would come to wake me. Then, whether it was from tiredness or illness- because I still had a slight fever- I’d feel so completely exhausted that I had trouble knowing where ...

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Symeon-the-New-Theologian-icoana-aghiorita-contemporana-UPS

Those who truly love God (Saint Symeon the New Theologian)

Κατηγορίες: In English

Who are those who truly love God, where does their love for Him come from and how is it shown? What are the works of our love for God as regards our neighbours? And that love is the culmination of the old and the new law. Saint Symeon the New Theologian, Alphabetic Chapters, chapter 9. Some people are astonished that it’s possible for most Christians not to love Christ. Because to love Christ is nothing other than to observe His commandments, as He said: ‘Those who have my commandments and keep them are those who love me’. So those who don’t keep His commandments, even if they say ‘I love Christ’, aren’t telling the truth. Any father who nourishes and nurtures a ...

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sun2

What is the Kingdom of God? (Metropolitan Anthony Bloom)

Κατηγορίες: In English

I should like to begin with a short reading from the book of Revelation, chapters 21 and 22: I heard a great voice from the throne saying, 'Behold, the dwelling of God is with men. He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself will be with them; He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning nor crying, nor pain any more, for the former things have passed away. And He who sat upon the throne said, ‘Behold, I make all things new.’ Also He said, ‘Write this, for these words are trustworthy and true... He who conquers shall have this heritage, and ...

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-ζώντων

Face to Face (Fr. Stephen Freeman)

Κατηγορίες: In English

Nothing about the human body is as intimate as the face. We generally think of other aspects of our bodies when we say “intimate,” but it is our face that reveals the most about us. It is the face we seek to watch in order to see what others are thinking, or even who they are. The importance of the face is emphasized repeatedly in the Scriptures. In the Old Testament, it is the common expression for how we rightly meet one another – and rarely – God Himself – “face to face.” In the New Testament, St. Paul uses the language of the face to describe our transformation into the image of Christ. The holy icons are doubtless the most abundant ...

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thanatos5

The death of the body plays a part in preventing the prolongation of evil (Maria Dimitriadou, Pedagogue)

Κατηγορίες: In English

We were made with two natures: the material and the spiritual. With dust from the earth, God made our material body and, with His breath, He breathed the soul into that body. Body and soul are joined without division, with no prioritization or conflict between them. The body assumes the important role of the temple of the spirit, rather than being a place for its confinement, as is the case with non-Christian philosophy. The soul, in turn, is given to us as being bodiless, rational and immortal. Body and soul are made by the Creator to live and work together in complete harmony. In this way, the purpose of our existence can be fulfilled, which is that we are able ...

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adam-eva2g

Deicide is the equivalent of Patricide (Metropolitan Amfilhije (Radović) of Montenegro and the Littoral)

Κατηγορίες: In English

1. According to the Biblical concept, ‘patricide’ is essentially the same as the sin of Adam and Eve. Their effort to become gods through the forbidden fruit and not through the alignment of their will and their actions to the commandment and will of God is the first attempt to remove God from the world and from our life. It’s the first attempt to expel God from the human conscience in the name of the ‘self-proclaimed Divinity’ of humankind. This expulsion of God from our conscience and from our life, by our being oblivious to Him and declaring His commandment to be false, is the equivalent of patricide. The essence of all atheist positions, from that first one to the ...

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logical

Which people are logical? (Saint Anthony the Great)

Κατηγορίες: In English

It’s a misnomer to call people logical. People who just read words in books by the ancient philosophers aren’t logical. People who really are logical have a rational soul and are able to distinguish good from wickedness and avoid what is evil and harmful to the soul. They’re happy to acquire, through study, what is good and beneficial to the soul, and they then apply it, with thanks to God. These are the only people whom we should call logical.

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kolyba

The Holy Memorial Services – Part II (Ioannis Foundoulis)

Κατηγορίες: In English

But already, in the Apostolic Constitutions (VIII, 41), there were special prayers and petitions by a deacon “for our brethren who have reposed in Christ” and which basically have the same content, and sometimes phraseology familiar to us from the prayers now in use (“forgive him/her every sin, witting and unwitting… place in the land of the righteous, ... remaining in the bosom of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob… from which all pain, sorrow and sighing have fled”. There is also evidence that memorials were established, by the apostles, to be held on the third, ninth and fortieth days as well as on the annual anniversary of the date of death. Source:http://vipeheracliotv.blogspot.gr/ A Biblical or elementary theological interpretation is given for each: ...

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Dorothei-Gaza-frescă-Dionysiou-1547-UPS

Cut off the passions before the soul becomes accustomed to them – 1 (Saint Abba Dorotheos)

Κατηγορίες: In English

Abbas Dorotheos: That we should take care to cut off the passions quickly before the soul becomes accustomed to them. Put your minds, brethren, to the way things are and see that you don’t neglect yourselves, because even a little inattention can lead us into great dangers. I went to visit a brother one time and found him recovering from an illness. In the course of conversation, I learned that he’d been alone and had had a high fever for the first seven days and then, even after another forty days he still hadn’t fully recovered. You see how troublesome it is if you’re afflicted by even a minor illness. It almost always happens that people don’t pay enough attention to minor ...

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answer

What will you answer? (Saint Dimitri of Rostov)

Κατηγορίες: In English

Our life is like a war, a market, a school, a long sea voyage. In battle, you can’t just take time out; in trade you can’t be idle; in school you can’t be inattentive; and there’s no room for carelessness on a sea voyage. So don’t be last, don’t be inattentive in doing God’s work, but put yourself about and work hard. For you, this is the battlefield, this is the market-place, this is the school. You’ve got the talent; don’t hide it, multiply it. What will you say on the dread day of judgement when you’ve not only failed to multiply your talent, but haven’t even managed to get any interest on it?

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love-and-hate-2-ups

The Marriage of Love and Hate (Fr. Stephen Freeman)

Κατηγορίες: In English

The genius of Dostoevsky lies in the profound theological insight of his tumbled novels. They can be difficult reads for many people – particularly in our modern setting. He has “too many characters” and they “talk a lot.” His characters are complex: I was a scoundrel, and yet, I loved God…  Good and evil are in a monstrous coexistence within man. So says Dmitri Karamazov. And this statement describes all of Dostoevsky’s characters. Everyone is a mix of good and evil. There are no “good guys” and “bad guys.” And Dostoevsky would argue that this is simply true always. As such, morality is a non-starter. We are not created for the pleasantries of morality. Every effort at “moral” living simply yields hypocrisy. Beauty! ...

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worth

It’s worth the suffering (Elder Efraim Vatopaidinos)

Κατηγορίες: In English

This is the victory of the Church. All of us will have our Cross, commensurate with the strength of each one of us, and in accordance with God’s will, but behind the Cross, is sweetness, power, Grace and joy. ‘For through the Cross, joy came into the world’. So let’s not want to come down from the Cross.

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