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The Dormition

Sermon preached by Fr. Antony Hughes on Sunday, August 15, 2021. In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, One God Amen. Glory to Jesus Christ. The scripture readings today are extremely significant and apropos to the day. Saint Paul’s talking about self-emptying: the Kenosis of Jesus Christ, who came to the world, giving up all His divine prerogative to become one of us and save us in

Holy Transfiguration. The Scandal of the Transfiguration

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, August 5, 2019  My Archbishop (Alexander Golitzin) shares the story of a young man whom he taught some years ago. He was Orthodox from Estonia. He grew up in the Soviet era and had come to hate all things Russian, including the Orthodox Church. Nevertheless, he saw an Orthodox procession in the streets of his city one year, a procession that included the Russian bishop (whom he also hated and believed

ΧΡΙΣΤΟΣ ΑΝΕΣΤΗ! CHRIST IS RISEN! The Sixth Tuesday of Pascha: From the Depths of Hell

By Fr John Breck, April 1, 2009 The final Old Testament reading for Holy Saturday vespers—Daniel 3:1-57, the story of the three young men in the fiery furnace in Babylon—is composite, drawing upon both Aramaic and Greek (Septuagint) traditions. The latter modifies and amplifies a detail the Church’s patristic witnesses consider essential. That small detail is a typological image that announces the primary theme of Orthodox Pascha or Easter: the descent of Christ into the

The Third Friday of Great Lent, the Annunciation: Announcing the Incarnation

By Father Steven Kostoff On March 25, we celebrate the Great Feast of the Annunciation to the Most Holy Theotokos.  This great feast always falls during Great Lent, and when it falls on a weekday, it is the only instance during that season for which the full Eucharistic Liturgy is served for its commemoration—clearly a sign of the feast’s significance.  Thus, the Annunciation is something of a festal interlude that punctuates the Eucharistic austerity of

The Universal Christ: Growing in Christ

[The cosmos] is fundamentally and primarily living. [1] Christ, through his Incarnation, is interior to the world, rooted in the world even in the very heart of the tiniest atom. [2] —Pierre Teilhard de Chardin As Paul saw Christ as a single “New Human” (see Ephesians 2:15), as Duns Scotus saw Christ as the Alpha point of history, so Teilhard saw the same Divine Icon as the Omega point of cosmic history—both the archetypal starting point and the alluring final goal.

The Seventh Day of Christmas. The Holy Name.

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, January 3, 2017  In 1913, a small Russian fleet landed a contingent of soldiers who forcibly removed a group of Russian monks from Mount Athos. This action came at the end of a stormy controversy surrounding the name of God. The monks were known as the Imyaslavsy (“Name worshippers”) and were following ideas that had been promulgated in a text published in 1907. That work, On the Caucasus Mountains, written by the staretz, Schemamonk

The Fifth Day of Christmas. 14,000 Infants (the Holy Innocents) slain by Herod at Bethlehem

14,000 Holy Infants were killed by King Herod in Bethlehem. When the time came for the Incarnation of the Son of God and His Birth of the Most Holy Virgin Mary, Magi in the East beheld a new star in the heavens, foretelling the Nativity of the King of the Jews. They journeyed immediately to Jerusalem to worship the Child, and the star showed them the way. Having worshipped the divine Infant, they did not

The Twenty-Sixth Day of Christmas Advent. Christmas in General.

By Father Stephen Freeman, December 23, 2009 “Peace on earth! Good will towards men!” is a common greeting to be found on cards during this season of the Nativity. These are, of course, the words sung by the angels the night Christ was born in Bethlehem (Luke 2:14). It is also a phrase which admits of several interpretations. The possibility of various meanings is very likely the reason for its popularity on greeting cards. Who

The Twenty-Third Day of Christmas Advent. It’s About Time.

Early peoples created Myths, when they could not explain how or why things happened – from their own emotions to Nature. Traditional historians rely on man’s written & drawn records to interpret past progress & myths. Archaeologists’ science & artifacts form the basis of our knowledge of prehistorical civilizations, most of which seem to be in Africa, Europe, & Asia. We don’t know much about ancient cultures here in North America, but we need to.

The Fifteenth Day of Christmas Advent. The Christmas When Everybody Was There.

By Stephen Freeman, December 24, 2018  The soldiers were scattered across Europe with the loneliness of war. The world was caught up in a total struggle. Women had gone to the factories; children were collecting scrap metal. The “war effort” was universal. In many places, food was rationed. The madhouse of consumption belonged only to the war; everything else could wait. And there was Christmas. Hollywood and Tin Pan Alley were part of the effort