Pseudo-Dionysius the Areopagite

Pseudo-Dionysius the Areopagite, (flourished c. 500), probably a Syrian monk who, known only by his pseudonym, wrote a series of Greek treatises and letters for the purpose of uniting Neoplatonic philosophy with Christian theology and mystical experience. These writings established a definite Neoplatonic trend in a large segment of medieval Christian doctrine and spirituality—especially in the Western Latin Church—that has determined facets of its religious and devotional character to the present time. Historical research has been unable to identify the author, who, having assumed the name of

A Trinitarian Revolution

I think we are in the beginnings of a Trinitarian Revolution. History has so long operated with a static and imperial image of God—as a Supreme Monarch and Critical Spectator living in splendid isolation from what he (and God is always and exclusively envisioned as male in this model) created. His love is perceived as unstable, whimsical, and preferential. Humans become the God we worship. So it is quite important that our God is good and

The Cross. The Universal Pattern: Loss and Renewal

I believe that the Mystery of the Cross is saying that the pattern of transformation is always death transformed. Death and life are two sides of one coin, and you cannot have one without the other. The theological term for this classic pattern of descent and ascent was coined by Saint Augustine as “the paschal mystery.” We now proclaim it publicly at every Eucharist as “the mystery of faith.” But why? The pattern of down and up, loss and renewal,

Christos Anesti! Christ is Risen! Monday of the Fourth Week of Pascha. Heaven: Universal Resurrection

For Christians, Jesus Christ is the ultimate symbol of the universal pattern of union with the divine: “When Christ is revealed, and he is your life, you will be revealed in all your glory with him” (Colossians 3:4). God’s clear goal and direction for humanity is mutual indwelling, where “the mystery is Christ within you, your hope of glory” (Colossians 1:27). Henceforth we know our true and lasting life in the new “force field” that Paul calls the

The Great and Holy Friday. Good Friday and the Irony of Believing

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, April 10, 2015 Irony is probably too much to ask of youth. If I can remember myself in my college years, the most I could muster was sarcasm. Irony required more insight. There is a deep need for the appreciation of irony to sustain a Christian life. Our world is filled with contradiction. Hypocrisy is ever present even within our own heart. The failures of Church and those who are most

The Great and Holy Thursday. The God Who Fights for Us

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, April 29, 2016 I was small for my age as a child, and quite thin at that. I liked to play, but was not particularly rugged and did not enjoy sports that involved getting knocked around. I grew up with another “Steve” next door to me, who was big for his age. Inevitably, I was nicknamed “Little Steve,” and he, “Big Steve.” I confess to being glad when he moved away,

Doubt and Modern Belief

By Father Stephen Freeman Why do people in the modern world find belief so difficult? Obviously, many find ways to believe in God and do so with great zeal, but others, even those who describe themselves as believers, admit either to doubts about God or about many traditional teachings of the faith. The more “miraculous” teachings, the Divinity of Christ, the Virgin Birth, Walking on the Water, Rising from the Dead, etc. present difficulties for most

The Thirty-Eighth Day of Christmas Advent. The Fiery Furnace of Christmas

By Father Stephen Freeman   The three youths, wise in God, who shone with joy in the furnace, proclaimed the birth of Christ on earth; For just as the Lord sent down a precious dew, He preserved from the flame her who gave birth; He keeps her undefiled and enriches her with divine gifts. Therefore, Daniel, pleasing to God, rejoiced and was glad, For having foreseen the stone from the unquarried mountain, he now prays

Transforming Our Pain

Spirituality is always eventually about what you do with your pain. It seems our culture has lost its own spiritual foundation and center, and as a result we no longer know what to do with universal pain. If we do not transform our pain, we will always transmit it–to our partner, our spouse, our children, our friends, our coworkers, our “enemies.” Usually we project it outward and blame someone else for causing our pain. In

Authority: Answers without Questions

By Father Stephen Freeman We imagine that life is made up of questions seeking answers. The opposite is also true: life is often made up of answers seeking questions. More troublesome than this are pseudo answers seeking questions, for the questions created by pseudo answers are inevitably pseudo questions. This, I suggest, goes far in describing the landscape of modern Christianity. For whatever the real question might be, what we see in modern Christianity cannot be the