Category Archives: Wisdom of the Church Fathers

St Isaac the Syrian – God is greater!

∼ Words from the Church Fathers ∼

God is greater!
Greater than your illness whatever it may be.
Greater than your deepest disappointment.
Greater than your greatest worry.
Greater than your worst enemy.
Greater than your most difficult problem.
Greater than life.
Greater than death.
God is greater!
Believe it! Live by it! Affirm it! Claim in by faith and use it as a pillow to rest your weary soul. God is greater!
If your God is not greater, then the God you believe in is too small. He is not the God the Church believes in.

– St Isaac the Syrian

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St Porphyrios – Make a new start every day…

∼ Words from the Church Fathers ∼

A person can become a saint anywhere…
At your work, whatever it may be,
you can become a saint through meekness,
patience, and love.
Make a new start every day, with new
resolution, enthusiasm and love, prayer and silence.

– St Porphyrios

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On earthly riches…

∼ Words from the Church Fathers ∼

A sinful soul, full of passions, cannot have peace and rejoice in the Lord, even if it had charge over all earthly riches, even if it ruled over the whole world. If it was suddenly said to such a king, happily feasting and sitting on his throne, “King, now you will die,” his soul would be troubled and he would tremble with fear, and he would see his powerlessness. But how many beggars there are, whose only wealth is love for God, and who, if you said to them, “You will die now,” would answer peacefully, “Let God’s will be done. Glory to the Lord, that He has remembered me and wants to take me to Himself.”
– St. Silouan the Athonite, Writings, IV.3

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The Most Holy Mother of God prays for us ceaselessly. . . .

∼ Words from the Church Fathers ∼

The Most Holy Mother of God prays for us ceaselessly. She is always visiting us. Whenever we turn to her in our heart, she is there. After the Lord, she is the greatest protection for mankind.

How many churches there are in the world that are dedicated to the Most Holy Mother of God! How many healing springs where people are cured of their ailments have sprung up in places where the Most Holy Theotokos appeared and blessed those springs to heal both the sick and the healthy! She is constantly, by our side, and all too often we forget her.

+ Elder Thaddeus, Homily on the Dormition of the Theotokos Quoted from Our Thoughts Determine Our Lives

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St Nikolai – On the Transfiguration

∼ Words from the Church Fathers ∼

“Why did the Lord take only three disciples on Tabor and not all? Because Judas was not worthy to behold the divine glory of the Teacher, Whom he will betray and the Lord did not want to leave him [Judas] alone at the foot of the mountain so that the betrayer would not, by that, justify his betrayal. Why was our Lord transfigured on a mountain and not in a valley? So as to teach us two virtues: love of labour and godly-thoughts. For, climbing to the heights required labour and height represents the heights of our thoughts, i.e., godly-thoughts. Why was our Lord transfigured at night? Because, the night rather than the day is more suitable for prayer and godly-thoughts and because the night, by its darkness, conceals all the beauty of the earth and reveals the beauty of the starry heavens. Why did Moses and Elijah appear? In order to destroy the error of the Jews, as though Christ is one of the prophets; Elijah or Jeremiah or some other that is why He appears as a King above the prophets and that is why Moses and Elijah appear as His servants. Until then, our Lord manifested His divine power many times to the disciples but, on Mt. Tabor, He manifested His divine nature. This vision of His Divinity and the hearing of the heavenly witness about Him as the Son of God, should serve the disciples in the days of the Lord’s passion, in strengthening of an unwavering faith in Him and His final victory.”

From the Prologue of St. Nikolai, for August 6

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Give alms to the poor

∼ Words from the Church Fathers ∼

If you give alms to the poor, know that, insofar as you do good to your neighbour, you do it, and more, to yourself. St Anthony says: ‘Life and death come to us through our neighbour’, and St Peter Damascene writes: ‘As the poor are bounden to thank God and love the rich, who do good to them, so still more must the rich thank God and love the poor, because they are saved, in the providence of God, both now and in the world to come, by their alms. For, without the poor, not only do they not receive the salvation of their souls, but are unable to flee the temptations of their riches.’ Alms that are given from vanity, or with scorn, are worthless.

In former days, the rich took gold to the hermits and begged them to accept it. It rarely happened that the hermits received alms gladly, and, when they received it, they did so out of compassion for the rich. The poorest of men received alms out of compassion!

– St Nikolai Velimirovic, The Prologue from Ochrid

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St Nektarios – The Path to Happiness

∼ Words from the Church Fathers ∼

A Christian must be courteous to all. His words and deeds should breathe with the grace of the Holy Spirit, which abides in his soul, so that in this way he might glorify the name of God.

He who regulates all of his speech also regulates all of his actions. He who keeps watch over the words he is about say also keeps watch over the deeds he intends to do, and he never goes out of the bounds good and benevolent conduct.

The graceful speech of a Christian is characterized by delicateness and politeness. This fact, born of love, produces peace and joy. On the other hand, boorishness gives birth to hatred, enmity, affliction, competitiveness, disorder and wars.

St. Nektarios of Aegina, The Path to Happiness, 7

happiness-is-a-pure-heart-for-such-a-heart-becomes-the-throne-of-god-st-nektarios-of-aegina

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