Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit. Amen.
There are few things in life more difficult to bear than a prolonged illness or permanent condition. In the Gospel today, we meet a woman who probably expected a lifetime of physical pain and struggle. She had been contorted not just for a week or a month or a year, but for a full eighteen years. There was no reason to believe her situation would change. She was bent over at the waist – contorted, the Fathers say, by an evil spirit. She had a most abnormal crease in the middle of her body. She couldn’t straighten up. The Lover of mankind looked with concern and sympathy on this miserable human creature, and saw in her not a withered and twisted animal, but a daughter of Abraham, a soul created by God and deserving of His mercy. Continue reading
Luke 18: 18-27
I was speaking to a college student recently about computer programming. He lamented the extreme detail required to write and edit code. Code is the programming language used to write software that tells computers how to process and display data. Code is in almost every electronic device that we use today. When you look at code it often does not resemble human language. It looks more like just a jumble of random words, letters and characters. Highly sophisticated programs contain thousands, if not millions of lines of coding. Continue reading
Luke 10: 25-37
Here, on the doorstep of the Nativity Fast—yes, that’s right, we’re beginning the journey to the Holy Nativity this Wednesday—we’re given the opportunity to renew and deepen our life in Christ, to grow in our love of God and neighbor, and strengthen our commitment to living out the Gospel—to “go and do likewise.” Christ gives us today the Parable of the Good Samaritan. Continue reading
Luke 16: 19-31
During our mission trip to Guatemala in July, we met children from very poor and broken families that could not care for them. The kids who live at the Orthodox orphanage are surely among the most fortunate needy children in that part of the world, for they have food, clothing, shelter, education, and the love provided by the nuns and staff. Too often children in such circumstances are simply abandoned and left to face whatever cruel fate awaits them due to disease, starvation, or abuse. They are truly “the least of these.” Their names are not known and their lives and deaths are not thought to be very important in the eyes of the world. Continue reading
Ask any particular person, “When do you pray?’’ Often the answer will be, ‘”when I have a problem”. This is well and good for Jesus wants us to turn to God in prayer. However, often we miss out on many other opportunities to turn towards the Lord for help. This is due, on one hand, to our own ignorance and doubt or on the other hand to the prodding influence of other people. Continue reading
The Lord’s entry into the country of the Gadarenes was a testimony that He came into this world, to seek and save the darkened and fallen nature of humanity, because the situation cannot remain like this. Humans should not live with a fearful and darkened heart, but in joy, in love and in the light. Continue reading
Homily for the Holy Fathers of the 7th Ecumenical Council and the 4th Sunday of Luke in the Orthodox Church – Luke 8:5-15
I am sure that we all waste our time and energy now and then. Of course, sometimes we need a diversion from our usual cares and there is nothing wrong with taking a rest from time to time. The problem, however, is when we find excuses not to do what needs to be done. We do not want to look back on our day, our lives, or our relationships and be saddened because we failed to give attention to what is truly important.