Required reading: Solzhenitsyn

MOSCOW (AP) -- Russia has made a once-banned book recounting the brutality and despair of the Soviet Gulag required reading in the country's schools, the Education Ministry said in a statement Wednesday. The ministry said excerpts of Alexander Solzhenitsyn's 1973 epic "The Gulag Archipelago" have been added to the curriculum for high-school students. The book was banned by Soviet censors, … [Read more...]

Asceticism — The Cure for Consumerism

A report from Wells Fargo Securities shows a "record drop" in consumer credit this summer. "Despite the cash-for-clunkers program starting in the last week of July, nonrevolving credit fell at a staggering 11.7 percent annualized pace," analyst Yasmine Kamaruddin wrote. Indeed, much of the decline was attributed to a spike in charge offs, which points to the ongoing, widespread distress in … [Read more...]

Ligonier 1994: ‘A New Era Has Begun’

Watch and listen as American Orthodox metropolitans and bishops make a case for administrative unity -- 15 years ago. The Ligonier Meeting was a gathering of twenty-eight or twenty-nine Orthodox Christian hierarchs in North America, specifically those affiliated with SCOBA, held Nov. 30 to Dec. 2, 1994, at Antiochian Village in Ligonier, Pa. In Part 3, Greek Orthodox Metropolitan Methodios … [Read more...]

Met. Jonah — The Necessity of Unity

At the Friday night Sept 4 first session of the Missions and Evangelism conference, OCA Primate Met Jonah makes a strong call for unity preceded in importance only by the preaching of the Gospel. Listen here:   … [Read more...]

Green Patriarch: Human Economy Failing

One would think that, having established a worldwide reputation as the Green Patriarch, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I -- and his advisers -- would approach the writing of a statement on Orthodox Christian stewardship of the environment with a certain gravitas, a sense of responsibility to those in the Church searching for answers on the weighty and complex problem of how to live in this … [Read more...]

The One Thing Needful

Archpastoral Message of His Beatitude, Metropolitan Jonah at the Beginning of the Ecclesiastical Year. September 1, 2009 To the Venerable Hierarchs, Reverend Clergy, Monastics and Faithful of the Orthodox Church in America The Lord said: The Spirit of the LORD is upon Me, Because He has anointed Me To preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, To … [Read more...]

Unity in Christ

From "Catholic Consciousness: The Anthropological Implications of the Dogma of the Church" by Vladimir Lossky. English translation (from the French original) in St. Vladimir's Seminary Quarterly, Volume 14, No. 4, 1970. No differences of created nature -- sex, race, social status, language, or culture -- can affect the unity of the Church; no divisive reality can enter into the bosom of … [Read more...]

Church collection box full to the brim

From Kathimerini: The Church of Greece’s finances are in rude health, according to a report handed to Archbishop Ieronymos this week, which indicated that the church made more than 7 million euros profit in 2008. According to the internal report, which was seen by Kathimerini, almost 20 million euros of revenue flowed into the church’s coffers last year, mostly from the renting out of church … [Read more...]

Erdogan and the Christians

Vatican analyst Sandro Magister takes a closer look at the recent meeting between Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I. "But like other conciliatory gestures in the past, this one also risks producing no results," notes the introduction on Chiesa online. Magister examines Pope Benedict XVI's reservations about the entry of Turkey into the European … [Read more...]

SCOBA’s Fr. Arey on Chambesy

On the Orthodox Christian Network, Fr. Mark Arey, the General Secretary of the Standing Conference of the Canonical Orthodox Bishops in the Americas (SCOBA), discusses the Fourth Pre-Conciliar Pan-Orthodox Conference that met in Chambésy, Switzerland, in June, in an interview with Fr. Chris Metropulos. "If we're serious, really serious about Orthodox unity, well my friends, we have to do the … [Read more...]

Patriarch Kirill wants monastery that was Gulag to be spiritual center

The towers of Solovki Monastery in the winter of about 1930, when it was a concentration camp

From Ecumenical News International (26 August 2009): By Sophia Kishkovsky Moscow, 26 August (ENI)--The Solovetsky Islands off the coast of Russia's northern Arkhangelsk region – settled by monks in the 15th century – became in the 20th century a center for the Soviet Gulag system of prison camps. Now the monastery archipelago should become a spiritual center not only for Russia but for all … [Read more...]

On Orthodox Christian Theological Education in America

From St. Vladimir's Seminary: Teaching for the Future: Frs John and Chad reflect on a stormy summer Theological reflection and education is essential for the life and future of the Church. Where there is no vision, the people perish (Proverbs 29:18). The vision of Christ himself, and how we are his body, enables us to pass through the storms of this world and move into the future. … [Read more...]

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