Becoming a Philanthropist

Becoming a home grown philanthropist As any history buff knows, these times we are living in can sometimes seem like reruns. News reports are filled with stories of wars, disasters, dictators, attacks on the innocent, increased crime, and the ever present persecution of Christians in various parts of the world. Political unrest is ramped, and genocide is being perpetrated upon…

The Homeless

Recognizing our shared humanity with the homeless Some forty years ago, I was walking with an elderly bishop of the Russian Church, on a street in San Francisco. I had spotted a filthy homeless man walking towards us. This man’s hair was disheveled, filthy with years of dirt, and was wearing torn clothing. He had no soles on his shoes,…

Complaining

Complaining weakens our resolve If we are always complaining about how unfairly we are treated, we will have failed in our imitation of Christ, Who was abused by His enemies unto death. We should strive to reign with Our Lord by loving our enemies and never complain. Christ looked towards His Heavenly Father and when we are tempted to complain…

An Update from the Old Monk

An Update from the Old Monk I should be filled with rage against a brute who could perpetrate such an unwarranted attack against me, especially since I’d smiled at him, just prior to the sucker punch. In my mind I assumed he was approaching me with a request for money, or wanting to know what I was. Since I try,…

PRAYERS REQUESTED

PRAYERS REQUESTED Abbot Tryphon of the All-Merciful Saviour Monastery was attacked while pumping gas at a Burien, WA gas station Tuesday around noon. A random man came over, and sucker punched Abbot Tryphon in the face, knocking him to the ground. They had to wait for paramedics, and a sheriff came and took his report. Father Tryphon was with Father…

Two Types

Which type of Christian are you? There are two types of Christians. There are those who can say with the Apostle Paul, “I have been crucified with Christ: it is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me (Galatians 2:20)”. And then there are those Christians who believe Christ was crucified so that we do not have…

The Banishment of Hell

The Lenten Journey and the banishment of hell One of my favorite authors as a young man, was Thomas Merton, the famous Trappist monk. In the introduction to his work New Seeds of Contemplation he wrote: “Hell was where no one has anything in common with anyone else except the fact that they all hate one other and cannot get…

Orthodoxy

A religion for the sick Our Orthodox Church has always seen herself as a hospital for the soul, the place where her children can seek healing. It is within her walls that we find the medicine we need to make us holy (whole), and where we can find the means for transformation that opens the doors to the Kingdom of…

Watchfulness

The guarding of the heart Watchfulness has been described by Elder Ephraim of Philotheou as “the axe which shatters the large trees, hitting their roots. When the root is struck, it doesn’t spring up again.” A conscientious attention to our thoughts is an important tactic in spiritual warfare, and is necessary if we are to have effective weapons that are…

The Place

Returning to where it all began A number of years ago I joined my younger brother, Dwayne, for a travel back in time, to places that were important to our youthful formation. This visit turned out to be one of the best I’ve had with my brother, and the highlight was the day we drove to a remote portion of…

Sin as Illness

The Church as the Hospital of the Soul Our Orthodox Faith defines sin as an illness that is in need of healing, not as a crime that requires punishment. The Church is a hospital for the soul whose therapists (priests) first sought therapy and then became the therapists. As a healing institution the Church is the place for broken souls.…

Rejected

When people don’t forgive There are people who insist on holding on to resentment, often inventing situations in their minds that never happened, justifying their bad behavior, and putting the blame on others. They see themselves as the abused party, always quick to take offense. Rarely are they able to have healthy relationships, for they are in reality, the abusers.…