And We Shall See Christ

We have reached today the last Sunday of Paschaltide. On Wednesday we will celebrate the Leavetaking of Pascha, the Feast of Feasts, and on the following day we will celebrate the Holy Ascension of our Lord Jesus Christ. In the Gospel reading which we have just heard, we see a living icon of all that the Lord has accomplished for each human soul. All of us are indeed born blind, disfigured by…

American Apostasy

Here’s a question for you: which of the following two statistics, each indicative of the apostasy engulfing our nation, is more disturbing? A) Over the last 14 years, 11% of Americans have abandoned Christianity — 35 million people in terms of the US population level in 2017. B) 72% of the American people as of 2017 identify as Christians, yet 73% believe that divorce is morally acceptable, 69% believe that extramarital sex is morally…

The Desert and the City

The important conversation I have been having with a reader about finding Orthodox community in the modern world continues, and his most recent response is again so important that I thought that I should repost it from the comments section and reply to it here: Father, bless! Thank you for your responses. You’re right that I was referring in a glancing way to Dreher’s Benedict Option, and I appreciate your perspective and counsel.…

The Benedict Option?

In a recent article I responded briefly and partially to the following question from a reader: What vision in your view could the Orthodox Church offer to people who are seeking life? …Many parish churches that are filled with pious families with the best of intentions occupy such a small fragment of parishioners’ lives that they stand little chance against the array of forces pulling us downwards. At what point would it…

The New Rituals of Techno-Utopia

Perhaps my assertion that secular humanism is the embryonic form of the religion of the Antichrist, and that scientific materialism is essentially a tool to build that religion, struck some people as a bit extreme, perhaps even ludicrous. If so, then I would encourage you to take a look at a very interesting article in today’s Atlantic about the new rituals being created to accommodate modern sensibilities, i.e. mankind’s worship of man.…

Public Schools and Antichristianity

Matthew Cochran has just published an extremely important article exposing the subversive indoctrination tactics being used in current sex education programs in public schools today. According to its publisher, the specific curriculum which he investigates is being used (as of 2017) by over 50 school districts across the country, including 11 of the largest 25. As Cochran details in his article (please read it), the program adopts a tone of innocuous impartiality…

The Shape of Things to Come

These “forerunners” of the Antichrist also direct that world-wide process which the Apostle St. Paul called “apostasy” (II Thess. 2:3). The essence of this process is Christian mankind’s ever greater departure from the genuine, uncorrupted teaching of the Gospel and the replacement of the Gospel commands with other ideals. The destructive nature of these ideals proposed to mankind by the Antichrist’s forerunners is that they sometimes seem acceptable for Christians, compatible with…

The Signs of the Times

As we continue to celebrate Paschaltide, our enemy’s rage at his cosmic defeat and his hatred for Christians continue to become ever more palpable. The signs of the times are becoming ever more obvious. In California, a bill has been introduced in the state legislature that would ban books advocating the traditional Christian teachings on marriage, gender, and sexuality, as well criminalize therapy intended to help persons who are experiencing unwanted sexual…

The Voice of Joy

Among the most rich and beautiful of all the hymns of the church year are the exapostilaria of Paschaltide. The Znamenny special melody used for the exapostilaria on these Sundays is both sweet and poignant, drawing our attention to the inner depths and the spiritual significance of these hymns. And the exapostilarion sung today, on the Sunday of the Holy Myrrh-bearers, is also the model for all the Sunday exapostilaria of the…

Truth and Lies in Syria

During the past several weeks I withdrew from secular affairs in general, and the news and politics in particular, in order to focus on my duties at the monastery and especially on the observance of Holy Week, Pascha, and Bright Week. The joy and peace of those sacred weeks was, however, somewhat marred upon learning that on Bright Friday, the Feast of the Life-Giving Spring of the Mother of God, our country…