Hope for Us Who Dwell in Darkness: Homily for the Sunday of the Blind Man in the Orthodox Church

Acts 16:16-34; John 9:1-38   Christ is Risen!              It is usually a good idea to follow the old saying, “Look before you leap.”  We can get into a lot of trouble by acting before we have a good understanding of our circumstances and of what is likely to come from our actions.  The blind man in today’s gospel reading, however, was in a very different situation.  Because of blindness, he could not…

The Light of the Christ Illumines Even Samaritans and Gentiles: Homily for the Sunday of the Samaritan Woman in the Orthodox Church

Acts 11:19-30; John 4:5-42 Christ is Risen! There is a lot of truth in the saying that familiarity breeds contempt.  It is possible for even the best things in life to become so familiar that we become blind to their true importance. We can do that even with our celebration of the Savior’s victory over death, as though the Paschal season were simply about singing joyful hymns and enjoying rich food.  It…

Overcoming the Paralysis Caused by the Fear of Death: Homily for the Sunday of the Paralytic in the Orthodox Church

Acts 9:32-42; John 5:1-15 Christ is Risen! We all face difficult circumstances in our lives that we are tempted to think will never change.  Sometimes we lose hope of gaining health and strength when we have been sick and weak in body or soul.  Problems in marriage, family life, or other relationships may seem beyond healing or repair.  Before the difficulties of our lives, let alone the persistent problems of the world,…

Bearing Witness to the Resurrection in our Bodies: Homily for Thomas Sunday in the Orthodox Church

Acts 5:12-20; John 20:19-31 Christ is Risen! Today we continue to celebrate the glorious resurrection of our Lord, God, and Savior Jesus Christ on the third day.  He is our Pascha, our Passover, from death to life, for Hades and the grave could not contain the God-Man Who shares with us His victory over death.  He has made even the tomb a pathway to the glory of life eternal. As He said…

Accepting the Tension Between Our Expectations and God’s Fulfillment : Homily for Palm Sunday in the Orthodox Church

Philippians 4:4-9; John 12:1-18           In religion or anything else, we get used to whatever we get used to.  We tend to take for granted whatever becomes normal, expected, and routine in our lives.   Once we learn to see ourselves and the world in a certain way, it is easy to become blind to even the most obvious truths that challenge our perspective. The chief priests and Pharisees…