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…

“Ask Me”

My son, Fr Steve Mathewes, told me that once a man came to him interested in Orthodoxy, but he couldn’t get used to our relationship to Mary. It bothered him that we praise her so highly, and he feared we thought of her as being as important as Jesus. That’s…

Charles Dickens: Virtuous Decisions in Life and Story

[November 6, 2021, lay keynote talk for the Doxacon Conference] I was very honored to be invited to speak at this conference. But I was also perplexed, because I don’t really know much about the world of sci fi and fantasy. So I talked with Mr. Daniel, and we came…

Found: The Church of the Glorious Martyr

[2021-11-19] Biblical Archeology Review has reported the discovery of a 1500-year-old church about 15 miles southwest of Jerusalem. It began as a simple chapel, built inside a cave where a saint was martyred (a “martyrium”) and buried. Archeologists found a large mosaic set in the floor of the courtyard that…

Establishing Your Prayer Rule

[2021-10-28] Here’s my strategy for making a prayer rule. A prayer rule is the plan you make about saying your prayers and reading Scripture every day. You might do it all at once each day, or you might (like me) split it up into many shorter times during the day.…

Dealing with Social Media

I thought I’d share something about how I use social media and the news media, to keep myself from getting “thrown around” inside. First, I stopped looking at my Facebook news feed. That endless scrolling, looking to see if the next one will be interesting–I think all that jumping about…