SUNDAY OF THE SAMARITAN WOMAN – John 4: 5-42
Christ is Risen!
It is strangely appealing to define ourselves by our failures, especially when others know that we have stumbled and treat us poorly as a result. As well, our own pride often causes us to lose perspective such that we obsess about how we do not measure up to whatever illusion of perfection we have accepted. People are often their own harshest critics in ways that are not healthy at all. Continue reading
Today’s gospel is very complex and requires considerable reflection so that various significant theological implications can be grasped. There are three matters which I wish to touch on to give insights into this gospel reading. Continue reading
5th Sunday of Lent, St Mary of Egypt, Luke 1 24-38
“Let us say something about the thorns. Blessed Mary of Egypt was twelve years old when she fell into the hands of the devil. She lived in sin day and night. But the merciful God enlightened her and she abandoned the world and went into the desert.
There she led a hermit’s life for forty years. She was cleansed and became like an angel.
God wished to give her rest, so lie sent the holy ascetic Zosimas to hear her confession and to give her holy communion. Then He received her holy soul into paradise, where she rejoices with the angels.
If there is anyone here like Blessed Mary, let him immediately weep and repent, now that he has time, and let him be assured that he will be saved as was Blessed Mary.”
St. Kosmos Aitolos, The Life of St. Kosmas Aitolos
It has been announced that today, 27 November 2017, the Holy and Sacred Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate has canonized the late Elder Iakovos Tsalikis.The petition for his canonization was submitted by the Holy Metropolis of Khalkida and 22 November has been appointed as his feast day.
An Excerpt from “With Pain and Love for Contemporary Man” by Elder Paisios of Mount Athos (Holy Monastery “Evangelist John the Theologion”, 2006)
Geronda (spiritual elder in Greek), does worrying about too many things take us away from God?
Look, let me try to explain. When a little child is playing and is all absorbed with his toys, he’s not aware that his father may be next to him caressing him. If he interrupts his play a bit, then he will become aware of his father’s caresses. Similarly, when we are preoccupied with too many activities and are anxiously concerned about them, when we worry too much about worldly matters, we cannot become aware of God’s love. God gives but we do not sense it. Be careful not to waste your precious energy on redundant worries and vanities, which will turn to dust one day. When you do this, you not only tire your body, but you also scatter your mind aimlessly, offering God only your fatigue and yawns at the time of prayer – much like the sacrifice offered by Cain. It follows that your inner state will be like that of Cain’s, you will be full of anxiety and sighs provoked by the devil standing by your side. Continue reading
The names of the Twelve Apostles are these: Simon, who was called Peter, and his brother Andrew, the First-called; James the son of Zebedee, and his brother John, who was also the Evangelist and Theologian; Philip, and Bartholomew (see also June 11); Thomas, and Matthew the publican, who was also called Levi and was an Evangelist; James the son of Alphaeus, and Jude (also called Lebbaeus, and surnamed Thaddaeus), the brother of James, the Brother of God; Simon the Cananite (“the Zealot”), and Matthias, who was elected to fill the place of Judas the traitor (see Aug. 9). Continue reading
Filed under Readings, Saints
∼ Words from the Church Fathers ∼
The disbelief of Thomas has done more for our faith than the faith of the other disciples.
Thomas, one of the twelve, called the Twin, was not with them when Jesus came. He was the only disciple absent; on his return he heard what had happened but refused to believe it. The Lord came a second time; He offered His side for the disbelieving disciple to touch, held out His hands, and showing the scars of His wounds, healed the wound of his disbelief. Continue reading