Sunday Off?

Let us not, out of laziness, miss the Sunday Liturgy It seems we all go through periods in our lives when our church attendance drops off. Work and home life can seem hectic, and we fall into the trap of letting ourselves feel overwhelmed. Given the fast pace of our active lives, and feeling like we just don’t have enough…

Overcoming Disinclination

The soul requires discipline to overcome disinclination My soul suffers from a certain blindness when it comes to itself. In its desire to be more relaxed, indolence, insensitivity and deceit rule the soul. In my refusal to master the work of salvation, complacency sets in. Since no one can enter into my inner life but me, I am the only…

Closed Communion

Closed Communion in the Orthodox Church   When a stranger approaches the Holy Gifts during the celebration of the Divine Liturgy it is the norm in the Orthodox Church for the priest to ask the person to “kiss the chalice”. Not knowing if the person is Orthodox, or whether they are in good standing with the Church, the priest can…

The Journey of Joyful Sorrow

The journey of joyful sorrow in the expectation of the Resurrection The main reason Christianity spread so rapidly following the Resurrection of Christ, was the power behind the resurrection. The truth of Christ’s resurrection empowered believers to joyfully embrace martyrdom, knowing that they would be joined in eternal bliss with their resurrected Saviour. Although their martyrdom would involve both mental…

Our Journey

Our journey to God begins with our first step The Church has guidelines governing the many periods of fasting, but we all need the discernment that can really only come from having a close relationship with our confessor or parish priest. To move beyond the standard fasting rules, the importance of keeping a prayer rule, and reading the daily scripture…

Incense

Let my prayer arise as incense before Thee. Psalm 141:2 From Old Testament times believers have burned incense as an offering when worshiping God. The ancient temple in Jerusalem even had priests whose sole duty was to keep the censer burning twenty-four hours a day. Ancient pagan kings were often escorted with large fans of peacock feathers and burning incense…

Attaining a Healthy Soul

During the Lenten Fast we must work for inner peace During the Great Lenten Fast, each day brings on new challenges regarding the health of our soul. Trials and temptations, especially during this fast period, confront us. But we must struggle to bring about a peaceful heart, and bring forth the healing we need, that our soul gain spiritual strength.…

Becoming Like Christ

What does the Lord require of me? As we examine how we live our lives as Christians, we look to those who leave an impression of goodness, kindness, and humility, as examples of the person we would like to become. That saintly person, by their every example, exudes the humbleness of the Lord, and love seems to be palpable when…

The Great and Holy Lenten Fast

Modern science sees the value of the Church’s tradition of fasting From Old Testament times, the people of God prepared for holy occasions with fasting and prayer, and the New Testament continued with this holy tradition. The Lord Himself fasted for forty days before beginning His earthly ministry, demonstrating the importance of fasting before starting any spiritual task. Christ even…

The Institutional Church

The “institutional” Church must be ripped from our mindset The public scandal of bishops protecting clergy and church workers, in  the wake of the sexual abuse of countless children, have shocked the world, and undermined the spiritual and moral authority of the Roman Catholic Church. This, together with the very public moral failings of some well-known televangelists, have left many…

Quietude

Quietude, silence and prayer It is in keeping constant vigilance, guarding our senses, and living a life of repentance and self-rapprochement, that we can hope to gain control of our passions and enter into true communion with God. The basic element of such a life has got to include quietude, for it is in states of calmness and inner reflection…

The Priest

The priest should be like a funnel If a priest is truly to be an agent for grace, he must become like a funnel through which the Lord’s mercy can flow. That a priest has received the grace of ordination, if he does not attempt to live a life of holiness, if he does not become a living sacrifice for…