Great Lent: A Refining Crucible

Great Lent: A Refining Crucible

After a time of emotional and spiritual unrest, culminating in a conscious feeling during the Nativity season that my spiritual life needed attention, this Lenten journey heralded in a “new beginning” for me. The details of life are unique for each of us, but the goal for Christians is simple...

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The Alpha and Omega: The End Is Christ

The Alpha and Omega: The End Is Christ

On September 8, 2017, I entered Holy Trinity, a parish on the other side of town from where we lived. It was the Nativity of the Theotokos, the God-bearer, who’s will to remain sinless cooperates with the miracle of Christ’s becoming man and saving humankind. The Mother of God’s birthday...

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The Dormition of the Theotokos: Our Promise and Hope

The Dormition of the Theotokos: Our Promise and Hope

The Dormition of the Theotokos was not celebrated for the first five centuries of Christianity. There was silence regarding the holy mystery of the Mother of God’s “falling asleep”. In the beginning, God willed that the details of His mother’s death and glorified, or resurrected, state remain veiled from the...

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The Essence of God: Existing Everywhere and Filling All Things

The Essence of God: Existing Everywhere and Filling All Things

Heavenly King, the Comforter, the Spirit of Truth Who are everywhere and fills all things, Treasury of blessings and Giver of Life, Come and abide in us, cleanse us from every impurity, and save our souls, O Good One. We are on our annual trip UP, dwelling in a cabin...

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Public Prayer: Light of Love

Public Prayer: Light of Love

For Orthodox Christians, prayer is private, flowing out of the heart. Prayer is also public and culminates in the physical settings of our churches, homes, and anywhere in the world where two or more gather. When an individual’s heart longs for God, it cries out, and this prayer connects with...

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Holistic Faith

Holistic Faith

The term holistic means working with nature rather than against it. And faith is belief that calls one to act. When we cooperate with God, His mercy becomes more apparent to us. God’s mercy enables one to fathom the natural meaning of life: belonging to Jesus Christ. One’s will to...

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Ancient Christian Prayer, Beyond “Christian Yoga”: Part 2

Ancient Christian Prayer, Beyond “Christian Yoga”: Part 2

Both yoga and prayer can be spiritual and physical disciplines, but prayer is more than what I can do with my body and in my mind. Prayer centers me in Jesus Christ by the effort I make to say His name, acknowledge His presence, and believe that He is God...

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Ancient Christian Prayer, Beyond “Christian Yoga”: Part I

Ancient Christian Prayer, Beyond “Christian Yoga”: Part I

Secular spirituality commonly recognizes that healing occurs through one’s body-mind-spirit. Today, many are spiritual, but asked if they are Christian and spiritual, many wouldn’t conclude that they are. To be Christian has come to mean that one knows the Bible and follows Jesus. Of course, this is essential to Christianity,...

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Unavoidable Illness and Death, Our Saving Road

Unavoidable Illness and Death, Our Saving Road

“O Lord, save Your people and bless Your inheritance.” 1 My three year old was impressed with the paradox that God died. We attended Liturgy for the Exaltation of the Precious and Life-giving Cross, and afterwards she continued to ask: “God died?” I would begin a too-theological response, to which...

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Being Well in the Ancient Faith

Being Well in the Ancient Faith

“I come to You, O Christ, blind from birth in my spiritual eyes, and call to You in repentance: ‘You are the most radiant Light of those in darkness’.” (Kontakion of the blind man, 6th Sunday of Pascha, 146) The body calls to the soul. When my period is late,...

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What is our faith but love for God?

What is our faith but love for God?

My daughter sang. Her voice was sweeter than honey, and a woman next to me smiled. After a time, my daughter grew pensive and snuggled against me. “I scared,” she said. I asked her why, told her there was nothing to be afraid of, but she insisted staring forward at...

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From: “Being Body and Spirit”

From: “Being Body and Spirit”

Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because...

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