Hearing and Responding to “Follow Me”: Homily for the Second Sunday of Matthew in the Orthodox Church

  Matthew 4:18-23               Two weeks ago we celebrated the great feast of Pentecost at which the Holy Spirit descended upon our Lord’s followers, making them members of His Body, the Church.  A week ago we celebrated the Sunday of All Saints, remembering all those who have become living icons of our Lord’s salvation by the power of the Holy Spirit.  Since then, we have begun the…

Ascending with Wounds into Heavenly Glory: Homily for the Sunday After the Ascension in the Orthodox Church

John 17:1-13             With all the problems in the world today, as well as the challenges in our own lives and families, it is tempting to lose hope.  It is easy to think that the best we can do is simply to cope with the difficulties that we face from day to day.  We may think that there is no alternative to living in terms of whatever…

We Must Obey in Order to See: Homily for the Sunday of the Blind Man in the Orthodox Church

John 9: 1-38 Christ is Risen! Seeing is believing.  There are many things in life that we will not accept unless we see them with our own eyes.  And there are some things that we have to learn how to see because they are not obvious to the untrained eye.  It often takes experience to see something rightly, to understand its true significance.  If that is true in everyday life, it is…

The Courage to Face the Truth: Homily for the Sunday of the Samaritan Woman in the Orthodox Church

John 4:5-42 Christ is Risen! It is strangely appealing to define ourselves by our failures, especially when others know that we have stumbled and treat us poorly as a result.  As well, our own pride often causes us to lose perspective such that we obsess about how we do not measure up to whatever illusion of perfection we have accepted.  People are often their own harshest critics in ways that are not…

Healed to Rise Up and Walk: Homily for the Sunday of the Paralytic in the Orthodox Church

Acts 9:32-42; John 5:1-15 Christ is Risen! We do not like to be dragged down or held back by problems that we cannot solve.  Whether it is our own health, a broken relationship with others, or a complex set of circumstances over which we have little control, it is very frustrating to know our weakness before seemingly insurmountable challenges. That is surely how the invalids, blind, lame, and paralyzed felt as they…