August 1, 2014

Met. Jonah’s 2009 Lenten message

On Feb. 28, Metropolitan Jonah, the head of the Orthodox Church in America, posted the following message: Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand! To the Very Reverend and Reverend Clergy, Monastics and Faithful of the Orthodox Church in America Dearly Beloved in the Lord: Christ is in our midst! Our Church has gone through a tragic and bitter episode in her history. Many souls suffered shipwreck, demoralized by the sins of a few. That is over. But the lingering bitterness and mistrust, resentment and desire for retribution, hang over us. We must heal this, both on an individual as well as corporate level. The only way to do this is repentance, using this season of repentance to make changes in our lives, cleanse our hearts and minds, and embrace the hope that can only be grasped by forgiveness. Unless we forgive others from our hearts, we cannot accept God's forgiveness for our own sins. Every time we criticize, judge, condemn or despise another person, no … [Read more...]

Repentence and Renewal

From the encyclical of Greek Orthodox Archbishop Demetrios on the beginning of Great and Holy Lent, which begins March 2. Like the children of Israel, we too are called to have faith as we set out on a journey that we know is not easy. The days and sacred services of this holy season lead us to the Holy Week, to the Cross of our Lord whereupon we venerate His crucifixion, the supreme act of sacrifice and love by God for us. At the same time, we enter this Lenten journey today with hearts filled with faith, hope, and love; because we know that the destination of this journey, after the spiritual intensity of the Holy Week, culminates with the glorious Resurrection of Christ and His complete triumph over sin, evil, and death. Today, as we embark upon this great Lenten journey, these forty days of the Great Fast, let us be mindful of all of those before us who also wandered in the wilderness. Let us not squander this beautiful opportunity for repentance and renewal; but … [Read more...]

The Tithe of the Year

In his latest podcast on Ancient Faith Radio, Fr. Thomas Hopko looks at Great Lent as the "tithe of the year," during which believers try to be what they ought always to be. Fr. Tom, an advisor to AOI, shares his Lenten maxims, the things a believer would do if they were really a believer and wanted to live as God wanted us to live. At the top of Fr. Tom's list: "Be always with Christ. Trust God in everything. Never forget God." Listen to "The Tithe of the Year": All of Fr. Tom's podcasts are archived here. … [Read more...]