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THE FAST OF THE DORMITION OF THE HOLY THEOTOKOS

By St Nino Orthodox, August 15, 2016  For fourteen days of August, during each year, the Holy Orthodox Church enters into a strict fast period in honor of the Mother of God, the Virgin Mary. The eminent Orthodox theologian, Father Sergei Bulgakov, beautifully expresses the high regard which the Orthodox Christians have for the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Mother of God, for her special role in the salvation of mankind, when he affirms, “The warm

The Dormition Fast

Published by Pemptousia Partnership, August 1, 2021 From the 1st to the 14th of August we fast in honor of Our Most Holy Lady, the Mother of God. It’s a strict fast, with fish eaten only on the feast of the Transfiguration of the Savior (6 August). If 15 August falls on a Wednesday or Friday, there is a dispensation only for fish. Fasting is a commandment from God. The first. The oldest of all.

Mary: The Blessing of All Generations

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, December 14, 2021  In my childhood, it was not unusual to hear someone ask, “Who are your people?” It was a semi-polite, Southernism designed to elicit essential information about a person’s social background. The assumption was that you, at best, could only be an example of your “people.” It ignored the common individualism of the wider culture, preferring the more family or clan-centered existence of an older time. It was possible

[Nativity of] John the Baptist and Forerunner of the Lord

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, June 22, 2007  [Today is] the feast of the Nativity of the Forerunner of Christ – a feast noted around my household for also being the birthday of my wife (and of her brother). Thus we celebrate and are sometimes slightly distracted from the ecclesiastical meaning of the day. But a family cannot be faulted for the joy it takes in its mother, nor I in my spouse. But I want

ΧΡΙΣΤΟΣ ΑΝΕΣΤΗ! CHRIST IS RISEN! Icon of the Theotokos the Life-Giving Spring, Zoodochos Pigi.

Commemorated on Friday of the Bright Week. There once was a beautiful church in Constantinople built in the fifth century by the holy Emperor Leo the Great that was dedicated to the Mother of God. Before he was emperor, Leo walking in a wooded area met a thirsty blind man who asked Leo to help him find water. He searched for water, but was unable to find any. Suddenly, he heard a voice telling him

ΧΡΙΣΤΟΣ ΑΝΕΣΤΗ! CHRIST IS RISEN! Let Us Rejoice and Be Glad!

Submitted by Fr. John Breck, May 2, 2009 Attributed by all of the extant manuscripts to St John Chrysostom, this little-known, pseudepigraphical homily from the fifth century focuses on “the Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.”[1] It begins by summarizing various fruits of the resurrection in the lives of believers, then exhorts readers or listeners to assume conduct appropriate to the day of Holy Pascha. In the rhetorical style typical of the period, it stresses antitheses,

The First Friday of Great Lent: The Renunciation of Reason

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, June 14, 2016 I grew up in a house of contradictions. We loved each other and we fought. I had a brother who was five years my senior, and we somehow developed a style of contradiction. If he said white, I said black. If I said red, he said blue. Or after either of us made a perfectly reasonable statement, whatever exceptions might exist, the other was sure to note them.

Everywhere Present

By Father Stephen Freeman, June 10, 2016 Everything you do, all your work, can contribute towards your salvation. It depends on you, on the way you do it. History is replete with monks who became great saints while working in the kitchen or washing sheets. The way of salvation consists in working without passion, in prayer…. May God give you the strength to keep your spirit, your mind, and your heart in the spirit of

The Feast Day of the Protection of the Theotokos, Ayia Skepi

On October 28 the Greek Orthodox Church commemorates the Feast Day of the Protection of the Theotokos, the Mother of God and Ever-Virgin Mary.  The feast-day of the Holy Protection of the Mother of God was established following a vision of holy Father Andrew during the course of a Vigil in the Church of Vlachernae at Constantinople. At the Fourth Hour of the night while deep in prayer, the Saint lifted up his eyes to

Apostle and Evangelist Luke of the Seventy

The Holy Apostle and Evangelist Luke, was a native of Syrian Antioch, a companion of the holy Apostle Paul (Phil.1:24, 2 Tim. 4:10-11), and a physician enlightened in the Greek medical arts. Hearing about Christ, Luke arrived in Palestine and fervently accepted the preaching of salvation from the Lord Himself. As one of the Seventy Apostles, Saint Luke was sent by the Lord with the others to preach the Kingdom of Heaven during the Savior’s