Bridegroom Matins – The oil in the lamp? – Our almsgiving

This post is a few days late for this year, but the message of the Bridegroom matins has been driven into us over these past days and, as such, is clearly a vital lesson for us to fully understand and to teach our children. The truth is that I have always struggled with the oil in the lamp. What does it represent and why wouldn’t the worthy virgins have shared some oil?…

Finding our Focus for Holy Week

I, for one, can’t believe it is near Holy Week already! Time in this pandemic seems surreal somehow – and I’m also home with a newborn so the days blur together a bit. I had planned to write a post on traditions – which I will still someday – when I read a beautiful post by Sarah Wright of the Orthodox Motherhood blog about simplifying our Holy Week and it made me…

Leave Room for God

Here we are more than half-way through Lent (if you are reading this as it comes out) and we have a moment to reflect on how we are using this season for our soul upkeep. If you are feeling that you are not using the time well now is the time to make the sign of the cross and dig your heals in again. May we not let this precious season pass…

A Focus on Almsgiving for Great Lent 2021

I just finished reading Fr. Evan Armatas’ Toolkit for Spiritual Growth: A Practical Guide to Prayer, Fasting and Almsgiving and highly recommend it. Especially as someone born and raised in the church, I think I can forget some of the why’s of our Faith’s ways and get caught up in the route doing without the true spirit of the task behind it. Or sometimes I get caught up in the not doing.…

2 Parables, 2 People & 1 Vital Life Learning – Building up to Great Lent

I absolutely love teaching. I never knew this about myself and I’m not sure how far it extends with other people’s children (although I teach 2 others in our homeschool pod and enjoy it tremendously),  but I find that what I learn in and while teaching and the process of inquiry and discovery is so fullfilling. I teach my children’s Sunday school and we generally focus on the weekly gospel – although…

Intersessory prayer – A prayer adapted

As with a blog post I shared a few weeks ago – Cultivating Daily Repentance: A Prayer – I found a prayer from my own prayer book that has now become a nightly prayer with the kids. We do have our own quick way of going around and each saying a “special prayer” for someone each evening, but they often fall very close to home – family, friends we saw that day…

Talking to Our Children about Death

I started to write this post just before the start of the pandemic last year and then suddenly death seemed to be everywhere and very close and I wasn’t sure it was the right moment. Things have gotten worse and better and worse and better and perhaps no moment is better to talk about this than now anyways. The truth is that we are wise to always keep death in our minds…

Bringing the Scriptures to Our Littlest – A first go.

For a while now I have been thinking about this post. How is it that we bring the scriptures to our littlest? I was delving into the world of homeschooling this year in a slightly unusual way, given the pandemic, but had read about simply reading the Bible through with your children and a friend recommended The Word of Promise Audio Bible which we got. All was well in early Genesis with…

Cultivating Daily Repentance: A Prayer

I have mentioned several times throughout the blog that a part of our evening prayers each night is for each child (and adult) to answer the question: “What did I do today to make God sad?” I really like this phrasing – surely a gift to me from my guardian angel – since it seems to cut to the heart of a spirit of repentance – a sense of not wanting to…

No Agenda but Love

Welcome to 2021 (and Christ is born for those on the Julian Calendar!) While it may not be the church new year we still mark it as a passing of time and many of us still think of it in terms of reviewing where we have been and rethinking and reintentioning where we are going. I certainly do at least. I have always loved making new year’s resolutions. And we often do…