Christians Under Attack

Cathedral Complex with St. Mark Cathedral on Right Islamic Attack on Coptic Cathedral On Sunday, April 7th, Egypt’s Coptic Christians suffered yet another attack by fanatical Islamists. Following the funeral for a number of Coptic Christians who were attacked and killed after Muslims accused some Coptic children of having written on the wall of a Muslim building, it was open…

Work

Spiritual Work and Physical Work The compartmentalization of the work week can wreak havoc on the inner life. It is easier to keep your prayers, spiritual reading, and focus on Christ, reserved for the weekend. Like so many, you struggle to keep spiritually grounded while at work. So many jobs make it seem impossible to stay centered, spiritually, when you…

The Dark Night

of the Soul Be not Fearful for God is Near Sometimes we enter a dark night of the soul, where God seems distant from us. This is only an illusion, for God is closer to us than our own breath. These times are allowed by God to bring us closer to Him, much like the loving parent who stands her…

Petty Clergy

Pettiness is the Enemy of Clergy Pettiness is that sickness of the heart that can lead some clergy to constantly be on the lookout for anyone who might offend them. Ready at a moment’s notice, they are poised to confront the offender. Such clergy build up their low self-esteem by finding someone they can look down upon, needing, as they…

The Bishop

The Unity and Continuity of the Church is Found in Her Bishops Gathering together for the celebration of the Church’s Divine Services is that great moment in the life of the People of God that brings together both heaven and earth. In these services we are mystically transported to a place where time and space cease to exist as we…

Depression

Giving of Ourselves over to The Noonday Demon There are times when we are tempted by what has been called the Noonday Demon, and give ourselves over to depression.  This tendency can often find life in an almost chronic habit of complaining. We complain about our health to the extent that it becomes the chief focus of our life. Money…

The Internet

A cold, sunny day at the monastery The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly There is a lot of good that can be discovered on line. A number of years ago I was charged by my archbishop with the task of addressing our Diocesan Pastoral Conference on the subject of Fasting According to the Early Church Fathers. Only after having…

The Seen and the Unseen

The Limits of Human Reason and the Knowledge of God There is the seen, and there is the unseen, the material and the immaterial. That which is material can be scientifically examined and experienced, the immaterial can only be seen and experienced spiritually. These are two worlds that are only seemingly at odds with one another. If you attempt to…

Caregivers must Care for Themselves

The Caregiver Holy Virgin Cathedral in San Francisco My dear mother was diagnosed with dementia, back in 2003. Soon after the diagnosis I moved her from Coeur d’ Alene, Idaho, and into an assisted living place on Vashon Island, where I could be involved in the supervision of her care. The dementia progressed for the next four years, and almost…

How to Forgive

Pastoral Conference, San Francisco, CA Put Aside Resentment The decision to forgive another person a wrong done to us begins when we decide to let go of resentment and thoughts of revenge. To forgive someone does not mean that we forget what they did to us, for this may be impossible. The memory of the hurt might always remain with…

How to Curb Division

in the Church The Abbot’s Study Refrain from a Life of Super CorrectDriven by fear, there are people who leave the Church and head into schism. In Greece there are at least eighteen “Old Calendar” Orthodox churches who claim to be THE Church, not recognizing each other as canonical. In the United States there are nearly the same numbers, some Slavic…

DEPRESSION

Prayer is the remedy for gloom and despondency Depression is one of the plagues of the modern age, overtaking many with it’s insidious poison, and ravaging many a life. The pain and suffering that comes with deep depression can infect those who surround the sufferer, for the depression of one person can spread like mold on stale bread. Psychiatrists are…