The evil that has descended upon our nation is largely my generation’s fault
My generation had a lot of spiritual capital handed down by our parents, but we spent it without replenishing it. We lived on a previous generation’s deposit of morality and spiritual heritage, but we failed to acknowledge the source of that, and establish our own relationship with God, and in turn, pass it on to the next generation.
We just assumed that everyone else knew what we knew, but we were wrong, and we’re now seeing the fruits of this error in our city streets. My generation raised our children without a spiritual foundation, believing that our children should be seen as “friends”, and setting aside spiritual foundations and discipline as nothing but “old school” and the “fifties baggage” belonging to our own parents’ generation.
Many of us wanted to free ourselves from the bonds of morality and from the Law of God. Now we are witnessing the fruit of our arrogance. The late Orthodox theologian, Father Thomas Hopko, said “hell is getting to do what you want to do all the time”. My generation created a foundation for our children that, in turn, led to them being ill equipped to pass down to their own children that which would, in turn, be a strong foundation for their lives.
My generation thus failed not only our children, but are now responsible for the ills of this new generation. We can therefore hardly look down with contempt upon the young people who are, although motivated by a good cause (ending racism), burning and looting our cities, and forgetting the just cause that began with their desire to bring about justice for our black brothers and sisters.
That which began with the unjust and cruel death of a black man, has now degenerated into uprisings inspired by Marxist ideologies that are dragging our nation into darkness, and the only leader for this “cause”, is the devil himself. We can spend a lot of time blaming this generation for their lack of spiritual awareness, but what are we going to do about it, and how are we going to help them?
Saint Seraphim of Sarov greeted everyone who came to see him with the words, “my joy”. It did not matter if the person was a criminal, or a good person, to the Elder Seraphim, they were all his joy, and all worthy of his love. He saw the good in everyone. They were “my joy”, even if they were a murderer or a revolutionary.
Everyone is charged by the Lord Jesus Christ to love those shouting their hatred in their face. We must love everyone, no matter what their political persuasion or intensity, their race, their religious beliefs or lack thereof. We are bound to love our enemies, in whatever capacity that might manifest itself, just as I am bound by this same Lord Jesus Christ to love even those who have threatened my life.
With love in Christ,
Saturday July 25, 2020 / July 12, 2020
7th Week after Pentecost. Tone five.
Martyrs Proclus and Hilary of Ancyra (2nd c.).
Venerable Michael, monk, of Maleinus (962).
Martyrs Theodore and his son John of Kiev (983).
Venerable Arsenius of Novgorod, fool-for-Christ (1570).
Venerable Simon, abbot of Volomsk (1641).
Martyr Golinduc, in holy baptism Mary, of Persia (591).
Venerables John (998) and Gabriel (10th c.), of Georgia and Iveron, Mt. Athos (Georgia).
Icon of the Most Holy Theotokos “Of the Three Hands”, Hilandar, Mt. Athos.
Icon of the Most Holy Theotokos “Samonapisavshaiasia” (1863).
Blessed Serapion, bishop of Vladimir (1275).
St. Veronica, the woman with the issue of blood who was healed by the Saviour.
Translation of the relics (1620) of St. Anthony, abbot of Leokhnov (Novgorod) (1611).
New Martyrs Andrew the Soildier, Heraclius, Taustus, Menas, and others (Greek).
Martyr Mamas near Sigmata (Greek).
Translation of the relics (2004) of New Hieromartyr Momcilo Grgurevic of Serbia (1940s) (Serbia).
The Scripture Readings
Mary Visits Elizabeth
39 Now Mary arose in those days and went into the hill country with haste, to a city of Judah, 40 and entered the house of Zacharias and greeted Elizabeth. 41 And it happened, when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, that the babe leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. 42 Then she spoke out with a loud voice and said, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! 43 But why is this granted to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? 44 For indeed, as soon as the voice of your greeting sounded in my ears, the babe leaped in my womb for joy. 45 Blessed is she who believed, for there will be a fulfillment of those things which were told her from the Lord.”
The Song of Mary
46 And Mary said:
“My soul [b]magnifies the Lord,
47 And my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior.
48 For He has regarded the lowly state of His maidservant;
For behold, henceforth all generations will call me blessed.
49 For He who is mighty has done great things for me,
And holy is His name.
56 And Mary remained with her about three months, and returned to her house.
Living Sacrifices to God
12 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. 2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.
Serve God with Spiritual Gifts
3 For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith.
37 He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. 38 And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me. 39 He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life for My sake will find it.
A Cup of Cold Water
40 “He who receives you receives Me, and he who receives Me receives Him who sent Me. 41 He who receives a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward. And he who receives a righteous man in the name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward. 42 And whoever gives one of these little ones only a cup of cold water in the name of a disciple, assuredly, I say to you, he shall by no means lose his reward.”
John the Baptist Sends Messengers to Jesus
11 Now it came to pass, when Jesus finished commanding His twelve disciples, that He departed from there to teach and to preach in their cities.