The Second Wednesday of Great Lent: Self-absorption, the Cancer of the Soul

Published by Pemptousia Partnership on August 7, 2021 Archimandrite Iakovos Kanakis Self-absorption is a cancer in the soul and has been so from the time of the first human beings until today. It can be defined simply as love for yourself. ‘Is that bad?’, it might be asked. The problem is that you love your ‘old’ self. How do I know if I’m self-absorbed? According to Saint Païsios, gluttony, egotism, stubbornness and jealousy all have self-absorption as their starting-point.

The Second Tuesday of Great Lent: Faith Lets Go

Sermon preached by Fr. Antony Hughes on Sunday, July 31, 2016 The Reading from the Holy Gospel according to St. Matthew. (9:1-8) Often in the Gospel stories, when Jesus brings hope, comfort and healing, detractors often show up. Like the scribes in today’s story. See them as representing the know-it-alls and the self-righteous.  We all know people like that and sometimes they may even be us.  We must be careful not to be like that.

The Second Monday of Great Lent: Annunciation of the Theotokos

Reading Six months after John the Forerunner’s conception, the Archangel Gabriel was sent by God to Nazareth, a town of Galilee, unto Mary the Virgin, who had come forth from the Temple a mature maiden (see Nov. 21). According to the tradition handed down by the Fathers, she had been betrothed to Joseph four months. On coming to Joseph’s house, the Archangel declared: “Rejoice, thou Full of Grace, the Lord is with thee: blessed art

The First Wednesday of Great Lent: How Elder Iosif Resolved the Issue of a Priest-Monk Who Mocked Him

Published by Pemptousia Partnership on August 18, 2021 Archimandrite Ephraim, Abbot of the Vatopaidi Monastery The humility, goodness and love which Elder Iosif [Vatopaidinos, (1921-2009)] bore in his soul moved God and were the solace of our brotherhood, who looked to him as our guide. Metropolitan Athanasios of Limassol tells of an event which shows the extent to which God was well-pleased with the spiritual labours of the Elder and also reveals the careful attention required in a

The First Tuesday of Great Lent: On the Beginning of the Great Fast

Sermon preached by Fr. Antony Hughes at Forgiveness Vespers at the start of Great Lent on Sunday, March 13, 2016 I always look forward to this night because it is so beautiful, so quiet, so peaceful, so instructive. We have begun the great fast again, and I’ve been thinking about it: every year we go through the Fast, we reach Pascha, we have a great celebration, and then we start life all over again as

The First Monday of Great Lent: Clean Monday

By Fr. Stavros Akrotirianakis Today the Orthodox Church begins the journey of Great Lent. Today is known as Clean Monday. The reason why Lent begins on Monday is that we have a forty day fast PLUS Holy Week. In the Orthodox Church, Holy Week begins with the Saturday of Lazarus, so Lent ends the day before, on a Friday. Thus working back forty days from Saturday of Lazarus, we end up starting on a Monday.

The Interior Focus of Great Lent

Sermon preached by Fr. Antony Hughes on Sunday, February 26, 2017 The Reading from the Holy Gospel according to St. Matthew. (6:14-21) As we prepare to begin the Great Fast, here are a few important points to remember. First, God is love, a kind and compassionate father to us. We must never forget that because love is the reason for all spiritual effort. “God does not love us because we are good, but because he

Soul Talk

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, February 20, 2018  Everybody is familiar with the voice in their head. Sometimes it has the sound of a nagging argument, repeating, rehearsing endlessly to no good end. It can also be the voice of scolding, shaming us for some minor transgression while it consigns us to the lowest of the low. It is rarely a welcome presence in our lives. No one ever says, “You wouldn’t believe how wonderful the

Get Your Soul Back

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, July 24, 2017  When was the last time you heard someone express concern for their soul? When was the last time you listened earnestly as a friend lamented a psychological or emotional struggle? The reason for the difference is simple: we have become a “soul-less” psychologized society. The classical concern for the soul has been replaced by an overwhelming interest in psychological and emotional “health.” We are becoming a “well-adjusted” society. The soul

Pentecost and the Liturgy of Hades

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, June 21, 2021  Pascha (Easter) comes with a great note of joy in the Christian world. Christ is risen from the dead and our hearts rejoice. That joy begins to wane as the days pass. Our lives settle back down to the mundane tasks at hand. After 40 days, the Church marks the Feast of the Ascension, often attended by only a handful of the faithful (Rome has more-or-less moved the