I recently asked in a couple of Orthodox clergy groups on Facebook about whether they have seen what I have seen and heard about anecdotally -- an unusual number of inquirers and catechumens showing up to the parish within the past year.
Having been given this outpost of Paradise, this place where God’s holiness may be encountered with preparation, where the cherubim with the flaming sword welcome us in instead of turning us away, we are commanded to expand this Paradise into the world.
Greetings, all. As you may know, I am the Chief Content Officer for Ancient Faith Ministries. A number of folks have written to us regarding AFM’s decision to remove Abbot Tryphon’s blog from our site and offer to help him move it elsewhere. (UPDATE: You can find his new site here.) So I wanted to say something about that, speaking now in my official…
My new book, "Arise, O God: The Gospel of Christ's Defeat of Demons, Sin, and Death," has just released from Ancient Faith Publications. I hope that you will check it out. Although this is now my fourth and shortest book, I regard this as the most important one so far.
If we had stood at Golgotha on the day of the Crucifixion, our material eyes would have seen Roman soldiers nailing Jesus to the Cross. But our eyes of faithfulness would have seen the young Warrior, ready to do battle, about to use this Weapon of Peace, the Trophy Invincible, as His means to enter into Hades, smash down its doors, and to defeat the devil and death.
Deep within every human person is the desire to be like God—to be immortal, to achieve and experience the fullest possible potential, to see reality as it truly is, to be elevated above the mundanity and struggle of this earthly existence.
Sometimes, God makes decisions that really are for the good of everyone involved that, if we made them, would almost certainly not be. But we’re not God, and we don’t know jack.
Someone who comes to the door of the Church is indeed asked to give everything up in order to become one with Christ. It is not expected of him that he will instantly be able to shed all of his baggage of sin and worldly attachments. But it is expected that he will commit to repentance.