Happy New Me!

Happy New Me!

Happy New Me! Naturally, you might be thinking what sort of a peculiar wish this is that we make at the beginning of the New Year. We are all accustomed to exclaiming “Happy New Year!” as the clocks strike midnight on December 31st and the year rolls over to the...

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Holiday Feasting at God’s Table

Holiday Feasting at God’s Table

How many of you recently have gone out to eat with your families? Holiday shoppers, especially on the weekends, will generally dine out because of the convenience, or simply to enjoy the festive atmosphere that virtually every restaurant or public place provides. Naturally, we have all felt the economic pinch...

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The Superiority of Being Over Doing

The Superiority of Being Over Doing

One of my favorite passages in all of Scripture is Psalm 46 (45 LXX):10, which reads: “Be still, and know that I am God.” This brief but powerful assertion, applicable to virtually any age in history, speaks to the uneasiness and distress every person or group experiences throughout life. Specifically,...

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Are Orthodox Funerals Really Depressing? Part 3, Final

Are Orthodox Funerals Really Depressing? Part 3, Final

This is the third article in a 3-part series. Read Part 1 and Part 2 here. The Rite of Anointing the Dead Another vital modification to the rite is the restoration of the baptismal and paschal vision, “to which, as we have seen, the earliest ritual for the Byzantine Rite...

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Are Orthodox Funerals Really Depressing?  Part 2

Are Orthodox Funerals Really Depressing? Part 2

This is the second article in a 3-part series. Read Part 1 here. SEEKING OUT VIABLE SOLUTIONS In the modern funeral service, the canon for the dead is replete with imagery focusing on the holy martyrs, whose struggles for Christ and corresponding rewards are compared to those of the dead,...

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Are Orthodox Funerals Really Depressing? Resurrecting Positive Themes in the Rite for the Dead

Are Orthodox Funerals Really Depressing? Resurrecting Positive Themes in the Rite for the Dead

THE ISSUE AT HAND Within the corpus of liturgical services in the Eastern Church, no one rite would be expected to draw as thoroughly and vividly the stark contrast between death and resurrection as the funeral. This thematology of opposites, however, and their related sub-themes (e.g. despair and hope, darkness...

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O Paradox of Paradoxes! A Reflection on the Feast of the Holy Cross

O Paradox of Paradoxes! A Reflection on the Feast of the Holy Cross

Perhaps I am preaching to the choir when I say that the older I become, the more I come to see that our world is full of paradoxes. Contradictions of all sorts abound in our lives — between individuals and their behavior, among ideologies and political systems, and so forth....

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Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year! On September 1st, Orthodox Christians from around the world who follow the New Calendar ushered in the beginning of yet another ecclesiastical year, a day of joyful celebration and expectation that the Church calls the Indiction. The Indictio, as it is known in Latin, was a Roman...

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The Mother of God and the Mother of “Gods”

The Mother of God and the Mother of “Gods”

As we continue our jubilant πανήγυρις during these days following this great feast of the Church, alternately called the “Summer Pascha”, we recall not only the Virgin Mary’s finiteness as a mortal human being who entered into the glory of her risen Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, but we also...

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