John 17: 1-13
“All mine are thine, and thine are mine, and I am glorified in them.”
In today’s gospel we hear the great and profound prayer of our Lord Jesus Christ. Today’s reading is the culmination of a discourse given by Christ to his disciples at the Last Supper, which effectively begins in Chapter 13 with Jesus washing the feet of the disciples and culminates in Chapter 17 with the prayer that all his disciples may be one so that the world may believe in Him who sent Christ into this world. For, as Christ promised, the disciples would behold Christ’s glory that had been given to him through the love of the Father before the foundation of the world. Continue reading
With all the problems in the world today, as well as the challenges in our own lives and families, it is tempting to lose hope. It is easy to think that the best we can do is simply to cope with the difficulties that we face from day to day. We may think that there is no alternative to living in terms of whatever helps us make it through the day in the world as we know it. Continue reading
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
Christ is Risen!
On this fourth Sunday of the season of Pascha, we remember Jesus Christ’s healing of the paralytic, the paralyzed man who had not been able to move for 38 years, probably his entire life. He had seen others healed miraculously in a nearby pool of water, but he had no one to help him get there when the angel stirred the water. So he was stuck, unable to move, unable to heal himself, and unable to receive God’s blessing. Continue reading
The Reading is from Mark 15:43-47; 16:1-8
In the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, one God. Amen. Christ is Risen!
The Gospel reading today should be familiar to you. The verses from chapter 16:1-8 comprise the reading before the closed doors of the Church on the night of Holy Pascha. According to most Biblical scholars St. Mark’s Gospel originally ended here on a dramatic note. The Angel asks the Myrrh-bearing women to go tell the disciples (and Peter in particular) the news that they would meet the risen Lord in Galilee, but according to this Gospel the women do not do as commanded. Instead they flee from the tomb: “for trembling and astonishment had come upon them, and they said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid.” We must not be too hard on them. Put yourself in their place. How would we respond to such a startling scene? A redactor, or perhaps an editor added what we know are two alternative endings to complete the story. This doesn’t bother us at all. We have known all along that the Gospels are the collected memories of the communities that gathered around the Apostles. They are the product of the Church rather than single individuals. 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