ON DEATH

metropolitan anthony of sourozh

Metropolitan Anthony of Sourozh

Death is the touchstone of our attitude to life. People who are afraid of death are afraid of life. It is impossible not to be afraid of life with all its complexity and dangers if one is afraid of death. This means that to solve the problem of death is not a luxury. If we are afraid of death we will never be prepared to take ultimate risks; we will spend our life in a cowardly, careful and timid manner. It is only if we can face death, make sense of it, determine its place and our place in regard to it that we will be able to live in a fearless way and to the fulness of our ability. Too often we wait until the end of our life to face death, whereas we would have lived quite differently if only we had faced death at the outset.  Διαβάστε τη συνέχεια του άρθρου »

All Saints Sunday

All Saints. Greek icon from the Holy Monastery of Stavroniketa of Mount Athos (late 16th - early 17th cent.)

All Saints. Greek icon from the Holy Monastery of Stavroniketa of Mount Athos (late 16th - early 17th cent.) From "Pemptousia" magazine.

Metropolitan Anthony of Sourozh

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

The Mother of God and the Saints whose memory we keep today, those who are known to us because God has revealed them and because they have been understood and recognised, either by their contemporaries, or years, at times – centuries later, all the Saints are the response of the earth to the love of God. And this response is given by them not only in their own name but in the name of all creation and in our names also; because each of us has the privilege to be called by one name, our Christian name, the name of one of those Saints. And the Saints whose names are ours stand before God and pray that their name should not be made unworthy in the eyes of the Lord. The Saints of God embrace the whole of Creation in their love, in their intercession, in their prayer, in their real, continuous presence. How wonderful it is that we belong to this vast family of men, of women, of children who have understood what the Lord meant when He came, and lived, taught and died for us! They responded with their own heart, they understood with all their mind, and they accepted His message with all their determination, to overcome in themselves all that has been the cause of the crucifixion; because if only one person on earth had strayed, fallen away from God, Christ would have come to save at the cost of His life. This is His own testimony to a Saint of the early centuries who had been praying that the sinners should be confounded; and Christ appeared to him, and said, “Never pray that way! If one sinner have existed, I would have died for him.” Διαβάστε τη συνέχεια του άρθρου »

Sunday before Pentecost (Metropolitan Anthony of Sourozh)

Ο απόστολος Παύλος. Ψηφιδωτό από το αρχιεπισκοπικό παρεκκλήσιο της Ραβέννας (494-495 μΧ).

The apostle Paul (mosaic). Ravenna, Archiepiscopal Chapel, 494-495 A.D. Ο απόστολος Παύλος. Ψηφιδωτό του αρχιεπισκοπικού παρεκκλησίου της Ραβέννας (494-495 μ.Χ.).

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

We have heard in the Acts of the Apostles how, as the Feast of Pentecost was approaching, Paul the Apostle had started on his journey to Jerusalem to be there together with all those who on that very day received the Holy Spirit. Of all of them he was the only one who had not been present in the High Room where the event took place. And yet, God had given him a true, a perfect conversion of heart, and of mind and of life, and had given him freely the gift of the Holy Spirit in response to his total, ultimate gift of self to Him, the God Whom he did not know but Whom he worshipped.

We also are on our way to the day of Pentecost, next week we will keep this event. When Paul was on his way, he thought of what had happened to himself in the solitude of his journey from Jerusalem to Damascus and in the gift of the Spirit mediated to him by Ananias. And we also, each of us singly and all of us together should reflect on all that God has given us. He has given us existence and breathed life into us, – not only the life of the body, but a life that makes us akin to Him, His life. He has given us to know Him, the Living God, and He has given us to meet, in the Gospel and in life, His Only Begotten Son, our Lord Jesus Christ. In Baptism, in the Anointment with Holy Chrism, in Communion to the Body and Blood of Christ, in the mysterious, silent communion of prayer, in the moments when God Himself came near, although we were not thinking of Him, He has given us so much. Διαβάστε τη συνέχεια του άρθρου »