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Forgiveness – The Hardest Love of All

By Stephen Freeman, March 9, 2016  I cannot think that any of my readers is a stranger to forgiveness, either the need to be forgiven or the need to forgive. The need to forgive, according to the commandment of Christ, extends well beyond those who ask for our forgiveness: we are commanded to forgive our enemies – whom I presume would rarely want to ask for our forgiveness. Of course, our experience of those who

The Fifth Wednesday of Great Lent: Experiencing Great Lent as a Couple

Rev. Fr. Nicholas Verdaris Orthodox Christians around the world are embarking upon the spiritual journey of Great and Holy Lent, a time that encourages all people to renew, refresh and rediscover their life in Christ. But as this blessed season begins to unfold in earnest, it is important to correct the misconception of the practice and experience of Lent as a lonely or solitary journey. This important clarification applies especially to those in the community

The Fourth Wednesday of Great Lent: Ten Suggestions for Lent

By His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios, Geron of America Meditate on the History of Salvation Think of the Lenten period as a time of meditating on the history of salvation.  Think about the creation of the universe and of Adam and Eve as the beginning of human life on earth.  Think about the fall of Adam and the entrance of sin in humanity.  We see in the hymnology of the liturgical book of Lent, the Triodion,

The Fourth Monday of Great Lent: As Lent Moves On – The Greatest Fast Awaits

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, April 9, 2019  As Great Lent has passed its mid-point, attention begins to move towards Holy Week itself and its very intense focus. It has been an unusual time for me, having traveled on two successive weekends to lead retreats. Travel is always disruptive, and absence from your own community creates a break in the normal continuity of the Fast. I have great sympathies for those whose jobs involve frequent travel.

The Third Thursday of Great Lent. The Great and Holy Lenten Fast.

Modern science sees the value of the Church’s tradition of fasting By Abbot Tryphon, March 16, 2019 From Old Testament times, the people of God prepared for holy occasions with fasting and prayer, and the New Testament continued with this holy tradition. The Lord Himself fasted for forty days before beginning His earthly ministry, demonstrating the importance of fasting before starting any spiritual task. Christ even went so far as saying “When you fast” (Matt.

The Third Tuesday of Great Lent: Keeping the Fast

Keeping the fast for all the right reasons By Abbot Tryphon, March 6, 2020 The Lord condemned the Pharisee, not because he fasted, but because his motivation was based on pride. The Pharisee wished to be seen by men, and he had no fear of God. He dared to stand before the Lord in pride and arrogance, while the Publican stood afar off, beating his breast, begging for the Lord’s mercy. Whereas the Publican saw

The Second Wednesday of Great Lent. A Brief Meditation On Lent

Reverend Andrew Demotes All of us lead lives so filled with the demands of work and family that little time is left to us to cultivate the garden of our soul. In our preoccupation with the ceaseless business of life, our spirit, if not completely forgotten, is often sadly neglected. When we do find the time to look at ourselves honestly, we soon discover that the spirit of the world has gradually and imperceptibly eaten

The Second Tuesday of Great Lent. Fasting?

Why should we keep the Lenten Fast? By Abbot Tryphon, March 2, 2020 Fasting is clearly not optional, as Christ said, regarding fasting, “When you fast…” (Matt. 6:16), rather than “if you fast…”. The Lord, when speaking of His disciples, said that when the bridegroom shall be taken from them, they shall fast. When His disciples reported to Him that they had been unable to cast out a demon, the Lord explained to them that this

The Second Monday of Great Lent: Get Real for Lent

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, February 24, 2018  According to St. Basil, God is the “only truly Existing.” Our own existence is a gift from God who is our Creator. None of us has “self-existing” life. We exist because God sustains us in existence – in Him we live and move and have our being (Acts 17:28). Sin is the rejection of this gift of God – a movement away from true existence. +++ Much of our attention in the

The First Wednesday of Great Lent. Balancing Great Lent

George Tsongranis Do you fast?  Give me proof of it by your works.  If you see a poor man, take pity on him.  If you see a friend being honored, do not envy him.  Do not let only your mouth fast, but also the eye, and the feet, and the hands and all the members of our bodies.  Let the hands fast, by being free of avarice.  Let the feet fast, by ceasing to run