“Without ceasing,” Really?

  Somebody asked me about the Jesus Prayer: <<What does it mean to ‘pray without ceasing’? Do you actually say the Jesus Prayer everywhere? On the beach, in a restaurant, when you’re with other people? Really, all the time?>> That’s a great question. Here’s how I replied. <<How it works…

The Battle You Are Already In

[2022-4-4] I was invited to give a talk on Cross Veneration Sunday, and it happened that the preceding Friday was the Feast of the Annunciation. So it was like a parenthesis of the whole Christian story, with the Annunciation of Christ’s Incarnation on one side, and the Crucifixion on the…

An Age of Hidden Violence

[2022-2-13] Someone who was writing an article about the state of the culture asked me to send her by email a couple of quotes about abortion and porn. I thought I’d share my responses here. About abortion: <<Abortion takes a terrible toll on our country. The annual fatality rate from abortion…

How Can We Evangelize Today?

[January 14, 2022] Someone once emailed me to ask me about evangelism in Orthodoxy. I wanted to share my reply, because it’s worth discussing. +++ After my husband’s and my chrismation, I was frustrated to see that most Orthodox “evangelism” seemed to be aimed at evangelicals. I asked why that…

A Great Time to Join the Orthodox Church

On January 7, 2022, my friend Rod Dreher had a post on his American Conservative blog about the direction Pope Francis is trying to take the Catholic Church. Rod went on to say: <<For the time being, American Orthodoxy is not as vulnerable as American Catholicism is to liberalizing, but…

Not Enough Space in their Cemetery

When I was visiting my hometown, Charleston, SC, I saw this story on the front page of the local paper. It’s about two small 19th century cemeteries used by Black churches in Charleston, lots which lie back-to-back within the same block. The overcrowding is horrific. <<Ephrath’s size is about 240…

The Difference between the Jesus Prayer and Meditation

An emailer  asked me to distinguish between various kinds of meditation, like someone sitting and thinking only about a word like “Love” or “Peace,” and how that differs from the Jesus Prayer. I replied: Those methods, it seems to me, aim at the prayer experience. It is a search for balance,…

What Changed Your Mind?

[10/20/2021] A journalist asked me a question, and I didn’t know how to answer it. She said that she had read something I wrote in which I said that my husband was attracted to Orthodoxy right away, but I didn’t like it. (That’s a common pattern; a priest told me…