On Forgiveness and School Shooters

On Forgiveness and School Shooters

“A voice was heard in Ramah, wailing and loud lamentation, Rachel weeping for her children; she refused to be consoled, because they were no more.” (Matthew 2:18 quoting the Prophet Jeremiah) The anger and tears are real. The one word on the lips of so many is “Why?” Greek Orthodox...

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What I learned from “The Greek Freak”

What I learned from “The Greek Freak”

Originally published in our Sounding Blog in January 2017, the OCN is again sharing this post as Giannis Antetokounmpo of the NBA’s Milwaukee Bucks is making news again.  For more on this story, check out this video from CBS News 60 Minutes.    There are times I find it difficult to...

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May the Phos Be With You Redux: Luke Skywalker

May the Phos Be With You Redux: Luke Skywalker

No discussion of Star Wars is complete without a look at Luke Skywalker, the young boy from Tatooine who finds himself at the center of a galactic struggle between good and evil. When it comes to his character, it is easy to get caught up in all the battles he...

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Celebrating St. Nicholas: When Santa Went to Jail

Celebrating St. Nicholas: When Santa Went to Jail

The Nativity Fast has begun, and Christmas is just around the corner. Trees are soon to be decorated. Children around the world will make lists, check them twice and anxiously await the arrival of Santa Claus. However, parents beware! Jolly old St. Nick served time in prison. I’m not kidding!...

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Should Orthodox Churches Have Armed Guards?

Should Orthodox Churches Have Armed Guards?

Our family discussed this question after attending liturgy one Sunday. The reason? The parish leadership chose to hire an armed security detail in response to the threats of a mentally ill person. A tense feeling was evident as uniformed guards patrolled the church property openly carrying their guns while a...

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What Makes an Orthodox Christian Leader?

What Makes an Orthodox Christian Leader?

Discussions about leadership appear everywhere in the Orthodox Church. Today, there are countless paid professionals, webinars, and conferences that all claim to improve Orthodox Christian leadership. Despite these efforts and countless dollars spent, the Church is experiencing a leadership crisis. The Church in America is more bureaucratic than ever before...

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Pascha and Doubt

Pascha and Doubt

Holy Week and Pascha present a real temptation to live one’s faith in a way that seeks to be externally perfect rather than beautiful for Christ. Orthodox Christians see this when we boast about the length of our services and the strictness of our fasting. How much pressure do we...

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What I Learned From “The Greek Freak”

What I Learned From “The Greek Freak”

There are times I find it difficult to attend Church. As a Greek Orthodox parishioner and father of a multi-cultural family, I hear the words that are whispered. You’re not Greek, are you? The Church is for Greek people first. There are two types of people, Greeks and those who...

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Transcendent Faith: What Makes Orthodoxy Great

Transcendent Faith: What Makes Orthodoxy Great

Terrorism grips cities around the world. Violence erupts in the United States. Christians face genocide in the Middle East. Politics spins out of control speaking to our worst fears. Human life becomes less valuable. The freedom to live one’s faith without government interference is increasingly in doubt. It is impossible...

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When Easter is a Second Chance

When Easter is a Second Chance

The wheel on our unbalanced shopping cart squeaks as our family speeds around the corner aisle of the local grocery store. Shoppers around us raise an eyebrow as they overhear our list of items being checked off. Some think we have lost track of the calendar. Others believe we have...

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About Those Big, Fat, Greek Weddings…

About Those Big, Fat, Greek Weddings…

Everybody loves Nia Vardalos’ My Big Fat Greek Wedding and with the release of the sequel, My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2, everyone is bound to be laughing and talking about Greek weddings in the days ahead. Count me among the many husbands who will be seeing this movie and...

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May The Phos (Light) Be With You #2: Four Lessons

May The Phos (Light) Be With You #2: Four Lessons

Four Orthodox Lessons from Obi-Wan Kenobi Popular culture’s ongoing obsession with all things Star Wars continues to grow with over 55 million people viewing the trailer for the soon to be released episode and countless children donning Star Wars costumes this past Halloween.   Star Wars is not just a...

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