Κατηγορία

In English

Τhe Good Samaritan: Love above Divisions (Varnavas, Metropolitan of Neapolis and Stavroupolis)

Κατηγορίες: In English

In the text of the Old Testament, we read that, when Cain killed Abel, God asked him where his brother was. Still angry, he retorted: “I don’t know. Am I my brother’s keeper?”. This question, so full of hate and indifference, is answered by one of the most important parables of the Gospels, which we shall hear in tomorrow’s reading (Luke 10, 25-37). It’s the parable of the Good Samaritan, which is well known the world over and which answers Cain positively: Yes, people are their brother’s keepers and we ought to love our neighbours with all the power of our hearts.   The details of the parable are well enough known: a lawyer wanted to “goad” Jesus and asked Him how ...

Περισσότερα

Message by His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew to the UNFCCC COP-23 Session (Bartholomew, Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople)

Κατηγορίες: In English

Bonn, Germany, November 6-17, 2017 The 23rd session of the United Nations Conference of the Parties on Climate Change provides occasion to recall with introspection and reflect with integrity on the state of our world, but also on where we have come and where we are headed as a global community, especially in light of the urgent call of the Paris Agreement. Last November, our message to COP-22 was that we “hold nations accountable to resolutions reached or for violations incurred, especially as we know the intimate connections of climate change to global poverty, migration and unrest.” This June, prior to the G-20 summit in Hamburg, we endorsed a letter inspired by Mission 2020 “calling on nations to highlight the importance of the ...

Περισσότερα

Bigger and more serious things (Abba Dorotheos)

Κατηγορίες: In English

If we remembered the words of the holy Elders, if we studied them, it would be difficult for us to fall into sin, hard for us to neglect ourselves. Because if, precisely as they’ve advised us, we didn’t despise the little things, which we consider insignificant, then we wouldn’t get to the point of falling into sin over bigger and more serious things.

Περισσότερα

Saint John Chrysostom: Condign Retribution and Reward! (Saint Nicholas Velimirovich)

Κατηγορίες: In English

Punishment and reward. Both of these are in the hands of God. But just as life on earth is no more than a shadow of that in heaven, by the same token, punishment and reward  are merely a shadow of the real punishment and reward of eternity. The main persecutors of Saint John Chrysostom were Patriarch Theofilos of Alexandria and Empress Evdoxia. After Chrysostom’s death as a martyr, bitter punishment awaited both of them. Theofilos became possessed by demons, while Evdoxia quickly succumbed to an incurable disease – her body became covered in sores from which worms emerged. The stench given off by her body was so appalling that it was unbearable for people just passing the house where she was ...

Περισσότερα

The life of Saint Arsenios the Cappadocian – 2 (Saint Paisios the Athonite)

Κατηγορίες: In English

While he was always charitable towards others, Father Arsenios was very hard on himself, and, out of his great love, made prostrations and fasted for others, who were unable to do so themselves. As a spiritual Father, he did not usually impose a canon on people, but would simply try to bring them to the point of awareness, so out of philotimo, they themselves would ask to do some ascetic act (of prayer, prostrations, fasting,) or charity work or what­ever kind of good deed they felt moved to perform. Whenever he saw a small child possessed or para­lysed and determined that the parents were the cause, he would give the parents a canon, once he had cured their child. On one occasion, ...

Περισσότερα

The Parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10, 25-37) (Metropolitan Dionysios of Servia and Kozani)

Κατηγορίες: In English

‘Just then a lawyer stood up to test Jesus’. This ‘lawyer’ approached Jesus Christ, supposedly to ask what he should do to inherit eternal life, but in fact out of a desire to provoke Him. The lawyer was an educated man of his time who studied and interpreted the Law and it was his aim to trap Jesus into a discussion. Instead he received a much-needed lesson. Jesus got him to understand that it’s one thing to be well-educated and play at being clever and quite another to be a good and useful human being. Wisdom isn’t a matter of knowing who your neighbour is, but knowing what you should do for that person. Everybody knows and says lots ...

Περισσότερα

Saint John the Alms-Giver

Κατηγορίες: In English

John was born on the island of Cyprus. His father was the eparch, a man of renown, called Epifanios. John was brought up from childhood as a real Christian and, against his will, but because his parents insisted, he married and had children. By God’s providence, his wife and children all departed this life early. John quickly became well-known for his great compassion, with the result that, in the reign of Irakleios, he was elected Patriarch of Alexandria (610). He governed the Church of Alexandria soundly for a decade, as a true shepherd, protecting it from dangers on the part of pagans and heretics. Once, when he was speaking to his flock, Saint John said: “If you wish to be ...

Περισσότερα

Encomium on the two Great Archangels Michael and Gabriel – 2 (Saint Nicodemus the Hagiorite)

Κατηγορίες: In English

Secondly, God created the perceptible world in six days. He bedecked the heavens with the multitude of stars and the suns; He adorned the earth with all manner of plants and animals; He filled the air with the sweet trilling of the birds. Finally, He made people, placed them in Paradise and told them to observe His divine commandment. Alas, they broke His commandment and were exiled from the Paradise of delight and sent into this world of tears. Here, too, God employed Michael and Gabriel, the outstanding servants of His providence and judgement. Once Adam had been exiled, Michael felt sorry for him and showed him how to till the earth, since he did not know how to do ...

Περισσότερα

The Rise of Fotios the Great to the Patriarchal Throne and the Composition of the Work ‘The Prince’ (Agapi Papadopoulou, Theologian)

Κατηγορίες: In English

When Emperor Basil I ascended the throne, in 867, major changes occurred in both the political and ecclesiastical spheres. He had murdered both Vardas and Emperor Michael III in order to achieve his goal. Wishing to appease the Pope and curry favour among the supporters of Ignatios, who were strong in the East, he dethroned Fotios, who was confined to the Monastery of the Protecting Veil, on the Bosphorus, with Ignatios being restored to the throne on 23 November 867. By then, the Pope was Hadrian II, being the successor to Nicholas, who died in 867. Despite these developments, Hadrian wanted a new synod to be called in Constantinople which would confirm the condemnation of Fotios. Considered in the West ...

Περισσότερα

The evil arrows (Saint John Chrysostom)

Κατηγορίες: In English

What are the arrows of the devil? The wicked desires, the unclean thoughts, the destructive passions, anger, wishing ill, envy, rage, hatred, love of money and every other kind of indolence. All of them can be got rid of with the sword of the Spirit, that is the Word of God.

Περισσότερα

“Between you and us a great chasm has been fixed”

Κατηγορίες: In English

“Between you and us a great chasm has been fixed, so that those who might want to pass from here to you cannot do so, and no one can cross from there to us”. (Luke 16:26) Why is there such a gap between us? Is it perhaps because we have forgotten the ways to cultivate positive and essential relationships and have forgotten the meaning of the words we use when supposedly communicating  with one another?  Is it perhaps because we no longer have the capability to pinpoint and relay to others our many, different, conflicting emotions and our deep anxieties and thus, we say one thing, feel something else and want something totally different? Is it perhaps that we are inadequate in expressing and ...

Περισσότερα

Tell Our Lady (Saint Porphyrios of Kavsokalyvia)

Κατηγορίες: In English

Whatever you want to your children, say it in your prayers. Children don’t hear with their ears. It’s only when God’s Grace comes and illumines them that they listen to what we want to tell them. When you want to say something to your children, tell Our Lady and she’ll see to it. That prayer of yours will be a living-giving breath, a spiritual caress that soothes, embraces and attracts your children.

Περισσότερα

Greek Monasticism in the 19th Century [3] (Protopresbyter George Metallinos)

Κατηγορίες: In English

The Spiritual Continuation However, the most substantive problem that always faces monasticism is not so much the external organization and the quantitative elements, as its internal state, its spiritual life, without which monasticism, this ark of the God-given way of being, which has preserved the ecclesiastical authenticity through the ages, turns out to be salt that has lost its taste and a lamp that has gone out. A representative anthology of witnesses allows certain conclusions in this direction. According to Ecumenical Patriarch Ioakeim the Third, Karyes, the capital of the Holy Mountain, presented “an image of a very troubled city with all of the evils that go along with it.” He adds, however, that “asceticism is not affected at all.” The historian Phil. ...

Περισσότερα

Saint Paisios the Athonite, Patron Saint of Signalmen (Nikolaos G. Koios, Content Coach of Pemptousia)

Κατηγορίες: In English

Following a request by the Office of Military Chaplains, part of the General Staff of the Greek Armed Forces, the Holy Permanent Synod of the Church of Greece has declared Saint Paisios the Athonite to be the Patron Saint of the Corps of Signals. Thinking Christians are often troubled by the question: how is it possible that the Church, which blesses the peacemakers (Matth. 5, 9) and has as its Head Him Who was meek and humble of heart (Matth. 11, 29), the Prince of Peace, should assign saints to be protectors of troops. This thought is reasonable and healthy as regards its starting point. From the very first years of its theological thought the Church condemned murder and war (see Origen, ...

Περισσότερα

Encomium on the two Great Archangels Michael and Gabriel – 1 (Saint Nicodemus the Hagiorite)

Κατηγορίες: In English

If, my beloved fathers and brethren, I were granted the gift of acquiring one of the tongues which the angels have, as the Apostle of Christ Paul says, (“even if I speak in the tongues of the Angels”) it would be certain and only to be expected that I would be able to praise Michael and Gabriel, the Archangels of the Lord, in a manner befitting them, since it is natural that one thing can be praised and presented to others by something similar to it. Had I but one of those fiery and immaterial tongues which were given to the holy and divine Apostles, I would be able to speak with supernatural praise, as is their due, of the ...

Περισσότερα

The Geography of Heaven and Hell (Fr. Stephen Freeman)

Κατηγορίες: In English

A timely reprint – for thinking about heaven and hell. I continue to be amazed at the literalism that infects the minds of many Christians. Just because Scripture uses the language of geography to describe something does not at all mean that we should assume that it is referring to a literal geography. Those whose imaginations are filled with various versions of heaven and hell in literal terms – it seems to me – lack imagination. The accounts of Christ after the Resurrection, though marked occasionally with very physical descriptions, are clearly marked as well with things that defy everything we know of physicality. His Resurrection is the only “image” of a tangible/non-tangible sort that we can point to for the character ...

Περισσότερα