The Nameday of our God

Today is the exclusive Nameday of our God. Although there are three Names, for three separate Persons, yet One Nameday, One God, not three Gods.

Christ defined this in a very mysterious paradox way, when instructing the Apostles: «to make disciples by baptising them in the ‘name’ (in Singular, not ‘names’ in Plural, though He lists 3 Names) of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.» This unusual Singular is contrary to the laws of Grammar but also contrary to human logic. Those who stubbornly attempt to analyse God under the prism of human logic, deprive themselves from a spiritual insight, they restrict themselves from an examination of things unseen and exclude themselves from a heavenly awakening: FAITH. Διαβάστε τη συνέχεια του άρθρου »

Pentecost the indwelling of the Holy Spirit

On this day we recall that just 50 days after the Glorious Resurrection, the Holy Spirit came upon the Holy Apostles and all those gathered with them in a new and different way. For the first time, the Holy Spirit actually took up residence within the human soul.

Before this the Spirit of God would descend upon a person for various reasons – such as when one of the prophets was inspired to speak or write or act in a particular way so that God’s will might be made known to His people, but He did not make His abode within their soul. But something new happened at Pentecost, something wondrous, something marvelous – God came and dwelt not only among us as our Lord Jesus Christ, but within us through the Holy Spirit. The promise of our salvation that we would be united with God, began to be made manifest.

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Let us prepare ourselves to come open, empty – to be filled with the Spirit

See also: “Α true canon of the Christian faith”.

Sunday before Pentecost

Metropolitan Anthony of Sourozh

During the Last Supper our Lord Jesus Christ told His disciples that separation was near, that He was to ascend to His God and to His Father as He would repeat again to the women who came to the grave. And when their hearts were filled with sorrow at the thought that they will not see Him again, He said, “Your hearts are full with sorrow and yet, you should rejoice for Me that I am returning to My Father. But I will not,” he added, “leave you orphan, I will send you the Holy Spirit, who proceeds from the Father, whom I will send to you and who will teach you all things.” And so do we here now while we are still in the light of the Ascension. Διαβάστε τη συνέχεια του άρθρου »

Prayer Before Bed

Some written prayers are simply better than anything you can think of yourself.  There are phrases in this traditional Orthodox “prayer before bed” that speak worlds. “…or seen the beauty of someone and been wounded by it in my heart…”

To the Holy Spirit:

O Lord, the Heavenly King, the Comforter, the Spirit of Truth: have compassion and mercy on me, Thy sinful servant! Absolve me, who am unworthy. Διαβάστε τη συνέχεια του άρθρου »

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The Baptism of Our Lord

King of all, you accepted also to be baptized in the Jordan by the hand of a servant, so that, having sanctified the nature of the waters, you, the sinless one, might make a way for our rebirth through water and Spirit and re-establish us in our original freedom Prayer from the Blessing of the Waters

It is most providential that God authentically and completely understands us; our emotions, struggles, life and even death, as He experienced them through taking human flesh by the incarnation and birth of His Son, out Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!  Beyond our understanding and experience of humility is the offering that God made to His creation, in the form of His Son.  As recipients of this Divine love and compassion, we are obligated to recognize and offer glory to our Father in heaven for His love and all the forms we receive it.

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Epiphany

At the completion of the thirty hidden years in which he had passed through all the stages of the common life of man and had shown exemplary humility in all that (he did, obedient to his parents, and submissive to the Law, Our Lord Jesus Christ entered upon His public ministry—the path that would lead to His Passion—by a dazzling revelation of His divinity For the Father and the Holy Spirit then bore witness that Jesus is truly the Only Son of God, consubstantial with the Father, Second Person of the Holy Trinity, Word made flesh for our salvation, the Saviour foretold by the Prophets; and that, in His Person, the Godhead is united without admixture to our humanity and has made it shine with His glory. Hence this feast of the Baptism of Christ has been called the Epiphany (‘manifestation’) or the Theophany, that is to say, the showing forth of the divinity of Christ and the first clear revelation of the Mystery of the Holy Trinity.

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Saint Syncletica (January 5)

St Syncletica. Fresco by Elder Sophrony Sakharov at the refectory of St John the Baptist Monastery in Essex.

Our holy mother Syncletica was born at Alexandria in the course of the fourth century to rich and devout parents, who came originally from Macedonia. From her youth, she had been seen as an excellent match on account of her great beauty, intelligence and virtues, and she had many suitors; but she remained deaf and blind to every worldly attraction, for she aspired only to spiritual marriage to Christ, the heavenly Bridegroom. Bringing her flesh into subjection by fasting and austerities of every kind, she constantly gathered her spirit in the depths of her heart and cried out night and day: My Beloved is mine, and I am His (Song of Songs 2:16).

On the death of her parents, she distributed her great fortune to the poor and then, accompanied by her blind sister, she fled far from the city. Read more… Διαβάστε τη συνέχεια του άρθρου »

The Place of the Heart

«God reveals Himself in the silence of the heart.» The early desert monks, followed by ascetic laborers of every generation, came to know this truth through their own, most personal experience.

We can acquire knowledge about God in many different ways, first of all through the Bible and the Liturgy. The question, however, is how we move from knowledge about God to knowledge of God, that is, to an ever-deepening communion with Him in love.

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The Prophet Joel: A Message for Today’s Secular World

Fr. George Morelli

And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, and your young men shall see visions. Joel 2: 28

These words by the prophet Joel (whose name means Yahweh is God) were spoken during the reign of King Uzziah (800 BC). Joel prophesied to the people of Judah and probably came from that area. His life overlapped the prophet Amos and the great prophet Isaiah. Διαβάστε τη συνέχεια του άρθρου »

Miracles by the Holy Belt of Most Holy Theotokos (Virgin Mary) [Volume 7]

9. The deadly plague is stopped
22 August 1827. Father Savvas writes: “At Enos, the deadly plague has stopped on the 15th of June with the grace of the Holy Belt”. From Enos, the Holy Belt was transported to Didimotichon. In another letter, dated 12th September, the same priest writes: “Here, the deadly plague has stopped as it did at Enos, with the grace of the Holy Belt”.
10. We have been freed from the onslaught of lucusts. read more… Διαβάστε τη συνέχεια του άρθρου »

Miracles by the Holy Belt of Most Holy Theotokos (Virgin Mary) [Volume 6]

5. Fr Daniel Katounakiotis is cured of an inflammation of the kidneys.
In his book, “Contemporary Figures of the Holy Mountain”, Vol. 4, the late Archimandrite Cherubim describes how Father Daniel Katounakiotis had been miraculously cured of an acute inflammation of the kidneys. We quote the account: “No sooner did he reach Vatopedi than he suffered an acute inflammation of the kidneys. This “thorn in the flesh” afflicted him very seriously this time and he had to stay in bed for weeks.
The fathers at the monastery have been nursing him with a lot of affection. But even more affection was shown by the great Doctor of the Mountain, the Mother of God. read more… Διαβάστε τη συνέχεια του άρθρου »

Miracles by the Holy Belt of Most Holy Theotokos (Virgin Mary) [Volume 5]


The Holy Belt has performed innumerable miracles over the years. We will only refer to some of them, here.

1.    The ship stays montionless
Once, the inhabitants of Ainos invited the Holy Belt. The monks who were accompanying it were being offered hospitality at the house of a priest, whose wife secretly cut off a small piece.     When the monks boarded the vessel, the ship stayed motionless, even though the sea was calm. When the woman saw this extraordinary event she realized her mistake and handed back the missing piece. The ship sailed off only after the piece was handed over. Since then a second casket was crafted to accommodate this piece to this day. read more… Διαβάστε τη συνέχεια του άρθρου »

Miracles by the Holy Belt of Most Holy Theotokos (Virgin Mary) [Volume 4]

The history of the Holy Belt chapter

The Holy Belt of the Mother of God, divided these days in three parts, is the only relic or remains, which endures from her life on earth and is being safeguarded at the Holy and Great Monastery of Vatopedi. According to the tradition, the belt was woven from camel hair from the Mother of God herself, and after her Repose, while she was ascending to heaven, she handed it over to Thomas the Apostle. The apolytikio of the feast for the deposition of the Holy Belt of the Mother of God says: “While you were ascending to the forthcoming glory, you have given your most venerable belt to Thomas the Apostle”.  read more… Διαβάστε τη συνέχεια του άρθρου »

Miracles by the Holy Belt of Most Holy Theotokos (Virgin Mary) [Volume 3]

The Holy Apostles became the vessels of the Grace of the Holy Spirit. Miracles are events beyond nature, which use and are being energized by material things (handkerchiefs and aprons), which are full of Grace. Our Orthodox Church celebrates the worship of the “chains” of Saint Peter in January. When he had been imprisoned by Herod in Jerusalem, his hands were chained. An angel sent by the Lord, freed him. The Christians have preserved the chains and they have been honoring and worshiping them for the benefit of their souls. The chains have received “eternal grace” and became “the cure of ailments, the consolation of those afflicted, the harbor for those distressed”. In a troparion of the Canon of the feast it is written: “Peter, drive away demonic disturbances, pacify the tempest of sin and eradicate all sicknesses, dangers and afflictions as well as the assaults by barbarians from all those who revere your chains”. read more… Διαβάστε τη συνέχεια του άρθρου »

Miracles by the Holy Belt of Most Holy Theotokos (Virgin Mary) [Volume 2]


Introduction

Our Church honors the holy and sacred relics, whether they are derived from the bodies of Saints, or are items belonging to them. One such relic, the only one which has been found to this day and belongs to the Most Holy Mother of God, is her Holy Belt. It constitutes a precious treasure and the most sacred relic which the Great, Holy Monastery of Vatopedi possesses. The Grace of the Holy Spirit continues to act through the holy relics. As Saint Chrysostomos says: “Jesus Christ, honoring the struggles, the blood they have shed and the martyrdom of the saints, has safeguarded their souls in heaven. But He left on earth their body and their holy relics to assist in our salvation”. read more… Διαβάστε τη συνέχεια του άρθρου »

Miracles by the Holy Belt of Most Holy Theotokos (Virgin Mary) [Volume 1]

 

Prologue

The works of God and His Saints, which cannot be rationally explained, are called miracles. God performs miracles ad infinitum. This is revealed by our Lord Jesus Christ who says: “My father is working until now” ( John 5, 17). By His uncreated energies, God provides, preserves and controls the whole universe, the whole creation. That is, God preserves the creation in the mint condition He had created it. He conserves and protects it by His divine consideration. Therefore, God’s uncreated energies are constantly and incessantly being revealed in the physical world and cause natural and physical results.Therefore, we are living a constant miracle. All of our abilities are being set in motion by God’s will. If God withdraws His energy from one of our abilities, we are going to lose it. Now I am able to see. I can see because God allows it. If God withdraws his energy I will become blind. read more… Διαβάστε τη συνέχεια του άρθρου »

An incredible miracle in Serbia (part 6)

Continued from (5)

It is impossible to describe the beauty of paradise. I could not understand a single thing of what I have seen. I was wondering: Why are some souls standing in groups? Why this, why the other. But again my angel-guide, replied to me without me voicing my questions:

“Dousan, if everything was being revealed to you, you could not take it”.

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An incredible miracle in Serbia (Part 5)

Continued from (4)

Archangel Gabriel enters my life

It has been difficult for me to describe what happened afterwards in simple words, since it is beyond imagination, incredible!

The room suddenly brimmed with light and at the same time a winged angel appeared! He was incredibly handsome with long hair tied at the back, like a pony tail. He was wearing a bright, long robe with a garment even brighter on top which was not handmade. He had sandals on his feet.

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The Sunday after Pentecost.

On this day, the Sunday after Pentecost, we celebrate the feast of all the Saints from throughout the inhabited world, in Asia, Libya and Europe, in North and South.

Verses

I sing the praise of each friend of my Lord,

If any would, let them now list them all. Διαβάστε τη συνέχεια του άρθρου »

Those Kneeling Prayers!

This past Monday Eve — that is, on Pentecost Sunday afternoon — we prayed the Kneeling Prayers at the Vespers for Holy Spirit Day, on Monday. I love coming to each feast day, in its distinctiveness, and partake of some unique aspect of the Gospel of Jesus Christ communicated through that liturgical celebration. And Pentecost does not disappoint, with its annual Kneeling Prayers.

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In fact, every holy mystery and holy virtue is a little Pentecost.

St. Justin Popovic on Pentecost

From the book, “The Orthodox Church and Ecumenism”

 What is Christ the God-Man? What in Him is God and what man? How is God known in the God-Man, and how is man? What has God given to us men in and, and with the God-Man? The Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Truth, tells us all the truth there is about Him, about God in Him and man in Him and all that is given us through Him. All this immeasurably transcends everything that the human eye has ever seen, the ear has ever heard, or has ever entered into the heart of man (I Cor. 2:9; cf. Jan 15:26; 16:13; I Cor. 2:4; Eph. 3:5).
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He is the source of sanctification and all life.

 The feast in honor of the Holy Spirit, «one of the Trinity of God, one in honor, one in essence and one in glory with the Father and the Son” is celebrated on the Monday after Pentecost. This feast has been established by the Church «for the majesty of the Most Holy and Life-creating Spirit, for He is one of the Holy and Life-originating Trinity», in reaction to the teaching of the heretics who rejected the divinity of the Holy Spirit and that He is equal-in-honor with God the Father and the God the Son. Διαβάστε τη συνέχεια του άρθρου »

Sermon on Holy Spirit (Metropolitan Anthony of Sourozh)

In the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost.

The Church of God is not an institution, it is a miracle and it is a mystery. It is a miracle because how could we expect that closeness of God which is revealed to us in the Church. And it is also a mystery in the original sense of the world, something which cannot be either explained or conveyed in words, something that can be known only through a spellbound communion with God. The English word “God” comes from a Germanic root that means “him, before whom one prostrates in adoration”.This is where our knowledge of God begins – the sense of the divine presence that forces us down to our knees, spellbound, silent, not with an empty silence that is ours at times but with a silence which is nothing but intent worshipful listening, listening to the presence, listening to that presence which is at the core of the silence. Διαβάστε τη συνέχεια του άρθρου »

The holy Pentecost

On the same day, the eighth Sunday from Pascha, we celebrate the holy Pentecost.

Verses.
With mighty wind, in form like tongues of fire
Christ gives God’s Spirit now to the Apostles.
Spirit on this great day on fishers poured.

This feast we also took from the Hebrew Bible; for just as they celebrate Pentecost, honouring the number seven, and that when they had passed through fifty days from Pascha they received the Law, so we too as we celebrate for fifty days after Pascha receive the all-holy Spirit, who gives laws and guides into all truth and lays down what is pleasing to God.
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