|04/20/15||St. Amphilochios on Avoiding Despair - |
Amphilochius of Iconium was a fourth-century bishop who was influential among the Cappodocian Fathers. It is to St. Amphilochius that St. Basil the Great dedicated his well-known patristic text "On the Holy Spirit." This story about resisting despair is attributed to him.
A certain bother, overcome by the passion of wantonness, sinned every day. However, each time, with tears and prayers, he would fall before the Master and Lord and receive forgiveness from Him. And as soon as he had repented, the next day, being misled again by shameful habit, he would fall to sin.
Read more of this wonderful story here ...
|04/19/15||How Old Are the Things That We Practice in Our Faith? - |
Exclusivity of the faith ... "No one may share the eucharist with us unless he believes that what we teach is true, unless he is washed in the regenerating waters of baptism for the remission of his sins, and unless he lives in accordance with the principles given us by Christ."
True nature of Holy Communion ... "We do not consume the eucharistic bread and wine as if it were ordinary food and drink, for we have been taught that as Jesus Christ our Savior became a man of flesh and blood by the power of the Word of God, so also the food that our flesh and blood assimilates for its nourishment becomes the flesh and blood of the incarnate Jesus by the power of his own words contained in the prayer of thanksgiving."
– St. Justin, Martyr (155 AD)
The veneration of relics and celebration of the saints ... "Now when the jealous, envious, and evil one, the enemy of the race of the just, saw that [Polycarp's] martyrdom had been illustrious, he set about preventing even his poor body being taken by us, though there were many who wanted to do this and to have fellowship with his holy flesh. Accordingly, we later took up his bones, more precious than costly stones and finer than gold, and deposited them in a suitable place. And there, in so far as it is possible, the Lord will grant that we will come together with joy and gladness and celebrate the birthday of his martyrdom."
– Martyrdom of Polycarp of Smyrna (156 AD)
|04/11/15||Reflections on Pascha by Fr. Alexander Schmemann - |
"Pascha is always the end and always the beginning. We are always living after Pascha, and we are always going towards Pascha. The whole spirit and meaning of liturgical life is contained in Pascha, together with the subsequent fifty-day period which culminates in the feast of Pentecost, the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the apostles. This unique Paschal celebration is reflected every week in the Christian Sunday ... Though it may seem strange to you, it is important to realize that every Sunday is a little Pascha." - Fr. Alexander Schmemann
Read more reflections on Pascha by Fr. Schmemann here ...
|03/29/15||Fr. Thomas Hopko's 55 Maxims of the Spiritual Life - |
(Fr. Thomas Hopko, well-known Orthodox author and Dean Emeritus of St. Vladimir's Orthodox Theological Seminary, reposed on March 18, 2015.)
1. Be always with Christ and trust God in everything.
2. Pray as you can, not as you think you must.
3. Have a keepable rule of prayer done by discipline.
4. Say the Lord's Prayer several times each day.
5. Repeat a short prayer when your mind is not occupied.
6. Make some prostrations when you pray.
7. Eat good foods in moderation and fast on fasting days.
8. Practice silence, inner and outer.
9. Sit in silence 20 to 30 minutes each day.
10. Do acts of mercy in secret.
Read more of Fr. Hopko's maxims here ...
|03/02/15||Fr. Steven's Podcast Series: The Life of the Church Today - |
Listen to Fr. Steven's newest podcast series, "The Life of the World Today," on the Ancient Faith Radio website! Fr. Steven discusses the Church at work in the world and important topical issues sometimes hidden from view.