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Politics and the Kingdom of God

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, January 27, 2017  The modern project holds that the world can be improved and made better. It also holds that human beings can be improved and made better. And finally, it holds that the means of that improvement and betterment are political. Modernity began only partly as a philosophical assertion. It found its voice first, and foremost, in the political experiments of the 18th century. During the 19th and 20th centuries, the rapid

The Fiction of Relationships and the Fullness of Life

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, January 20, 2017 It is very interesting that we use the word “relationship” to describe everything from God to our lifestyle. More interesting still, is that, used in this manner, the word dates back to only around the mid-20th century. There are older examples, but the psycho-social meaning that it carries today does not appear until around 1940. This also means that no one, prior to that time, spoke about having a

The Ninth Day of Christmas: To See Him Face to Face

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, January 11, 2017  “The self resides in the face.” – Psychological Theorist, Sylvan Tompkins There is a thread running throughout the Scriptures that can be described as a “theology of the face.” In the Old Testament we hear a frequent refrain of “before Thy face,” and similar expressions. There are prayers beseeching God not to “hide His face.” Very clearly in Exodus, God tells Moses that “no one may see my face

The Second Day of Christmas. The Synaxis of the Theotokos

On the second day of the feast, the Synaxis of the Most Holy Theotokos is celebrated. Combining the hymns of the Nativity with those celebrating the Mother of God, the Church points to Mary as the one through whom the Incarnation was made possible. His humanity—concretely and historically—is the humanity He received from Mary. His body is, first of all, her body. His life is her life. This feast, the assembly in honor of the

The Eighteenth Day of Christmas Advent: Blood Brothers of the Incarnation

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, August 8, 2016  My childhood in the 1950’s had the innocence of the time, fed by stories of our elders and the clumsy movies. We played soldiers (everyone’s father had been in the Second World War) and “Cowboys and Indians.” Despite the clear bias of the movies and the slanted propaganda that passed for history, almost everyone wanted to be an Indian. Cowboys never seemed terribly romantic, while the Indians clearly

The Eighth Day of Christmas Advent: The Elder of love, forgiveness and discernment

Published by Pemptousia Partnership, November 22, 2016 Elder Iakovos Tsalikis (5/11/1920-21/11/1991) By Alexandros Christodoulou Our age and today’s culture has, unfortunately moved away from the vision and pursuit of sanctity. The Orthodox faith is based on the presence of the saints. Without these, our Church is on the path towards secularization. Naturally, as we know from Scripture, God alone is holy, and sanctity derives from our relationship with Him, and therefore sanctity is theocentric rather

The Communion of Friends

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, November 22, 2016  You meet someone and like them. You slowly get to know them. Conversation and sharing, listening and learning, a picture or a reality begin to emerge. You think about them when they’re away. You’re aware that you matter to them as well. The thought of anything hurting them is painful. This is friendship. We easily reduce friendship to a set of shared emotions. Why we like someone else, we

Saving Knowledge

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, November 28, 2016  I have often used the example of riding a bicycle as an image of knowing God. There’s no difficulty learning how to ride if you don’t mind falling off for a while. But no matter how many years you have ridden, you cannot describe for someone else how you know what you know. But you know it. I also suspect that if you thought too much about riding a bicycle while you were riding

Christ and the Social Problem

Published by Pemptousia Partnership, December 13, 2017 † Archimandrite Georgios Kapsanis, Abbot of the Holy Monastery of Gregoriou The more that people are cleansed of the passions, the greater their capacity for real communion with God and other people. Those who take a romantic and external view of the human person transfer wickedness from the person onto society, which is why they proclaim that any improvement in society will bring with it an improvement in

Seeing and Believing – A Noetic Life Part 2

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, September 2, 2016  “I see what you mean.” Language holds many secrets that we ignore. Some of the secrets are quite old. If we pay proper attention, we are able to discover things that we already know, but did not yet know that we knew. The phrase, “Now I see,” or other various uses of “seeing” as a form of “knowing,” is quite ancient in its insight. The Greek word for