Why did God make him blind?

...  of the Blind Man, May 20, 2015 Rev. Fr. Andrew Stephen Damick In the Name of ...  it was not a lucky day in 1453, and what was formerly known as Pontus or Asia Minor came to be called Turkey, and the city known as ...  encounter this same kind of narrative dynamic in the Gospel of Christ’s healing of the blind man. The Lord’s Apostles provide ...

“Who Shall I Be at Pascha?”: The Cross at the Crossroads

...  is exactly the halfway point between the beginning of Great Lent and the holy day of ...  then there's really no point to any of this. That's the Gospel we're living. There's no other purpose to this holy season than ...  on the Mount from Matthew and the Gospel of John." You know, Lord, that we Orthodox read the entire Gospel in our homes during Holy ...

Lenten Evangelism #6: St. Gregory Palamas and the Paralytic

...  align="aligncenter" width="1000"] Christ and the Paralytic[/caption] Sunday of St. Gregory Palamas, March 8, 2015 Rev. ...  heretics, whose assertion was that the highest form of knowledge of God was intellectual—the philosophers, they said, had greater ...  from the beginning of the second chapter of Mark’s Gospel. Jesus was at Capernaum, teaching in a house which was said to be His ...

The Church is Love: More on the Legacy of Fr. Matthew Baker

...  align="aligncenter" width="1000"] Fr. Matthew teaching at Hellenic College[/caption] It's been astounding over the ...  of spirit are part of what makes the actual pursuit of knowledge possible. Reason and learning without love are just cold calculation ...  Holy Spirit in a communion of eternal love. This is the Gospel, that God so loved the world. One of the gifts that Fr. Matthew gave ...

“We need more spiritual brothers”: Losing Fr. Matthew Baker

...  align="alignright" width="320"] Fr. Matthew Baker at his ordination on January 19, 2014[/caption] I awoke this ...  with the charity that comes of being dedicated to knowledge and not making knowledge some kind of competition of possession. He ...  I did indeed see), he somehow had a special gift for the Gospel. [caption id="attachment_3427" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Fr. ...

Lenten Evangelism #3: The Last Judgment

...  align="aligncenter" width="646"] Icon of the Last Judgment[/caption] This sermon can be heard as an audio recording ...  one God. Amen. Today our series on preaching the Gospel—evangelism—continues with the Sunday of the Last Judgment, commonly ...  it is a promise of rescue from eternal suffering. Look, I know that heaven and hell stuff isn’t fashionable, but it’s still real.  ...

On Ecstasy and Laundry: Spiritual Experience in the Orthodox Church

...  id="attachment_3183" align="aligncenter" width="468"] The Ecstasy of Saint Paul, by Nicolas Poussin (1643)From Wikimedia ...  it is himself he is talking about. He simply says “I know a man in Christ” who had this experience. But it has long been ...  teaches us patterns for spiritual life. He preaches the Gospel, which includes teaching what it all means and how to live by it. His ...

Eulogy for My Mother

...  24, 2014[/caption] This eulogy was written for my mother's funeral on August 29, 2014. A few months before, she was diagnosed with ...  and sermons at funerals. Some have been for people I have known for some time, some for only a short time, and some for people I never ...

Spiritual Renewal and the Healing of the Blind

...  of the Blind Man, May 25, 2014 Rev. Fr. Andrew Stephen Damick In the Name of the ...  of this celebration with the account from John’s Gospel of the healing of the man born blind. Having fasted and prayed our way ...  blind. It is also not his parents’ fault. He does not know any other way of living. Seeing is something he hears people talk about, ...

Returning to the Paradise I’ve Never Seen

...  March 2, 2014 Rev. Fr. Andrew Stephen Damick In the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, one God.  ...  It is the expulsion of Adam and Eve from Paradise. We know what happens when Adam and Eve sin, when they eat of that one thing ...  He loves us without any question. The good news of the Gospel that is revealed to us in a particular, powerful way during this holy ...

Saving the World from Suicide: Localism, Christian Evangelism and the Culture War

The world is trying the experiment of attempting to form a civilized but non-Christian ...  and strategies we are going to need to pass on what we know to be true to future generations in a culture, legal and otherwise, that ...  but were instead concerned with getting the light of Gospel into a world covered in darkness. So what, then, do we do? I think we ...

The Annunciation and the Absence of God

...  of the Theotokos, 2012 In the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy ...  news, closely related to Evangelion, the word for “the Gospel.” And yet, somehow, even 2,000 years after the proclamation of this ...  for so much in life—if we want something, we have to know how to ask for it or perhaps how to look for it. The same is very much ...

On the Altar of the Cross

...  align="aligncenter" width="576" caption="The Hill of Crosses, Šiauliai, Lithuania"][/caption]Sunday of the Adoration of ...  of this world. The Lord Himself says this in today’s Gospel: “If any man would come after Me, let him deny himself and take up ...  glory? Doesn’t your heart burn within you not just to know about what is good, what is holy, what is filled with light and ...

Abdication in the Soul

...  width="540" caption="This document was ratified by the British Parliament on Dec. 11, 1936"][/caption] December 11, 2011 In the ...  glory”? How can you and I appear in glory? I don’t know about you, but my day-to-day life is not really one in which the word ...

“We have to begin building our own institutions.”

...  width="568.8" caption="Joshua Commanding the Sun to Stand Still upon Gibeon (by John Martin)"][/caption] October 9, ...  fundamentalism that they would never consider eventually acknowledging him as a colleague. I asked him why he was there, since he knew he ...  in an empire that is becoming more and more hostile to the Gospel. This time it is not paganism, however, but secular fundamentalism.  ...

As Lambs Among Wolves

...  Sunday After Pentecost, August 21, 2011 In the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, one God.  ...  His beyond the Twelve who were commissioned to bring the Gospel to the world. Thaddeus, whose feast day is today, was originally from ...  an imprint of His countenance. That cloth has come to be known as the “Icon Made Without Hands” or the “Holy Napkin,” and it has ...

The Voice and the Silence

...  Elizabeth as she speaketh with the Virgin Mary: Wherefore art thou, the Mother of my Lord, come unto me? Thou ...  festal commemoration is the birth of John the Forerunner, known to most English speakers as John the Baptist, which is narrated for us in the first chapter of Luke's Gospel. A major thematic element for today is the Voice. Zachariah, not ...

Consumption, the Ascension and the Dignity of Man

...  align="alignright" width="205" caption="The Women at the Grave of Christ and the Ascension of Christ"][/caption]The ...  all of us to “come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of ...  Light that illumines the darkness. Truly, as the Gospel reading says to us today, “the people who sat in darkness have seen a ...

“Spiritual But Not Religious” and the Path to God

...  width="220" caption="St. Irenaeus of Lyons, the Gnostic's least favorite guy"][/caption] I sometimes encounter folks who ...  the SBNR are those who are often likely to respond to the Gospel not so much with outright rejection but rather with "Sure, ...  of private revelation and opinion over corporate knowledge and tradition. It is also essentially Protestant, in that its basic ...

Be merciful to me, a sinner

...  align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="The Publican and the Pharisee"][/caption] In the Name of the Father and of the ...  Ever since Adam and Eve thought to themselves, “You know what? We like our way better than God’s way,” human beings have not ...  put ourselves first? Why does the Pharisee in today’s Gospel pray “with himself,” “God, I thank Thee that I am not like other ...

Make His paths straight

...  align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="The Baptism of Christ in the Jordan River"][/caption] In the name of the Father ...  No one who lives in the endless Twelfth Night can know who he is, because the whole world is designed to deny it and keep it ...  St. John the Baptist, called John the Forerunner. In the Gospel account, John is baptizing people in the River Jordan when he sees Jesus ...

Priorities and Practicalities

The following is a recycled post from my previous weblog, originally posted in October ...  to questions of eternal significance. What I didn't know was that that statement would reveal that I "live in la-la land."  ...  in the next. That's been true from the beginning of the Gospel's preaching. But what really astounds is that this is a hard sell even ...

Discerning the One Thing Needful

...  align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="The Church of the Dormition, Jerusalem"][/caption] Holy Dormition, August 15, ...  yet how often do we find ourselves saying, “I don’t know how I lived without that”? Today let’s spend a few moments thinking about attention and how we divide and focus it. The Gospel reading which is appointed for this Great Feast of the Virgin Mary, her ...