Memory Eternal, Fr Thomas Hopko!

Fr Thomas Hopko, retired dean of St. Vladimir’s Seminary, passed away this afternoon. I first met Fr Tom in the 1990s, when my father joined the board of St Vladimir’s Seminary. I must have been in sixth grade, or thereabouts. Fr Tom was always kind to me, and I spoke with him intermittently throughout my adolescence. I was an obnoxious, opinionated 17-year-old when I attended the St Vladimir’s summer institute in 2001, but…

The Divine Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts

Our devout & pious Forefathers contemplating the Strict Obligation of the holy & great Lent; instituted & established by the express Command of the Apostolic Laws; were apprehensive that even the celebration of the ever blessed Eucharist might be in some sort a violation of the strictness of the Fast; in as much as this is the festive Rite. Wherefore, that they might accommodate all things; preserve the Fast entire & yet…

Welcome to Notes on Church History

As some of you may know, I’ve been blogging about Orthodox history for quite a while now, over at OrthodoxHistory.org. That’s the official website of the Society for Orthodox Christian History in the Americas (“SOCHA”), an organization I helped establish and of which I’m a director. OrthodoxHistory.org isn’t going anywhere, but as our readers may have noticed, our posts there have become a lot less frequent. The main reason for that is…