September 29, 2013 -
We believe that we were created in the image of the Divine Love of God, and such love has unlimited potential. The true mark of an authentic human being, one who has reached this potential, living out the divine likeness in which he or she was created, is to love the world around us in an extreme manner – not only loving our family and friends and those who are close to us, but also loving unknown strangers and even loving our enemies.
September 22, 2013 -
What does Jesus expect from us? Do you ever think about that? What does our Lord want us to do in our lives, and what does He expect us to offer back to Him?
September 15, 2013 -
“It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me.” It’s a pretty radical statement, yet it summarizes the journey and goal of our Christian life. We are on a lifelong struggle, which can be quite challenging and difficult, where we are not only called to become more and more like Jesus, but where we labor to control and crucify our own ego and actually allow Christ to be formed in us.
August 31, 2013 -
“Today, this Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.” What did that mean? Isaiah was talking about the Messiah, a time when our messianic dreams would come true and the Anointed One of the Almighty would usher in the reign of God. We all dreamed of the Messiah and hoped that He would come in our lifetime, but what was Jesus talking about?!?
August 25, 2013 -
“I have no one who loves me… I have nothing to live for!” Michael Hill entered the school with an AK 47, 500 rounds of ammo, and a world of darkness, yet he unexpectedly encountered a woman from the opposite spectrum.
August 16, 2013 -
When we look at people in need – a poor family that can’t take care of their children, a lonely person with no one to turn to, an elderly person who has no one to help them, scenes of the horror from war and poverty around the world – whatever the situation, when we see people in need, how do we feel? What do we think? But most importantly, how do we respond?
August 11, 2013 -
Listen to what St. Isaac the Syrian has to say about the all-embracing love and kindness of God: "The 'merciful heart' in a human person is therefore the image and likeness of God's mercy, which embraces the whole of creation – people, animals, reptiles, and demons. In God, there is no hatred towards anyone, but all-embracing love which does not distinguish between righteous and sinner, between a friend of truth and an enemy of truth, between angel and demon. Every created being is precious in God's eyes."
August 04, 2013 -
Christ did not come simply to teach man, but to transfigure him, to re-adorn human nature in light, divine light, the glory of the Father. This final purpose for man is revealed in Christ’s transfiguration on the mount, this foretaste of the glorious future visible Theophany.
July 28, 2013 -
Demons, evil, the dark side, or however we name the forces of Satan, seem very evident in our society. But what about in our own lives? Do we actually believe in demons, in demonic possession, in the force of evil active in our own lives?
July 20, 2013 -
Right now there’s a popular song that I have heard continuously over the past weeks entitled Same Love, which was written on behalf of gay legal rights. The refrain of the song goes, “I can’t change, even if I tried, even if I wanted to, I can’t change”
July 14, 2013 -
St. Innocent, one of the greatest Russian missionaries who brought the Gospel to Alaska in the 19th century, admitted that his main problem in preaching to the native peoples of Alaska was the terrible witness of his fellow Russians, the fur traders and explorers. When St. Innocent preached the Good News to the native Alaskans, they would ask, “Aren't these other Russian workers Orthodox Christian?
July 07, 2013 -
We have a self-portrait of Jesus. When we keep that in front of our eyes, we will soon learn what it means to follow Jesus and become like Him.
June 30, 2013 -
Before Christ, we live our lives according to our own desires and passions, and follow the influence and ways of the world. Living “in the year of the Lord” implies that something other than ourselves stands at the center of history.
June 23, 2013 -
“To keep a lamp burning, we have to keep putting oil in it.," Mother Teresa taught. "To keep the light of Christ aflame within us, we have to keep inviting the Holy Spirit in! We have to keep opening our lives for the Spirit of God to flow freely within us.”
June 16, 2013 -
One of the most precious images we have of God is as our Heavenly Father. Jesus Himself taught His followers to think of “the One who is and was and is to come, the Lord Almighty” as “Our Father” whenever we pray. What a radical image that Christ offered to His disciples – telling them not to think of our All Powerful Creator as a distant God, as someone or something separate and far from us, but to relate with our Maker as our Father!
June 09, 2013 -
"To find yourself, you must offer yourself." This is one off the teachings that 13 students from Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology, St. Vladimir’s Seminary, St. Tikhon’s Seminary, and Hellenic College, along with my beloved former professor, Fr. Alkiviadis Calivas, and I learned from Archbishop Anastasios during our recent class and trip to Albania.
May 26, 2013 -
Every day I send out a Daily Inspirational Email to around 500 people, which includes a brief Spiritual Meditation, Bible Reading, and Life of a Saint. Recently, I have included a section called “DAILY ACT” challenging people to do some random act of love and kindness which reflects our faith.
May 19, 2013 -
$560 million dollars! That was the jack pot winner of the Powerball Lottery, and someone won the winning ticket yesterday. Imagine winning close to $600 million. What would you do? How would your life change? Would it change for the better? Would it make you happier?
May 05, 2013 -
In some parts of Greece, there is a tradition that the day after Pascha is a day devoted to telling jokes. This tradition came about because they said that during Holy Week God pulled the greatest joke on Satan himself, when Christ willingly accepted to die on the Cross. Satan thought he won - that he had defeated Jesus, that darkness had conquered light, evil had conquered good, and death had conquered life – Satan thought he had won only to find out that when Christ entered the devil’s domain, hades, he could not contain Him.
April 28, 2013 -
One of the greatest accusations ever made against Christians could be summarized by the words of the famous atheist philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche, when he said that Christians had no joy; that Christianity was a joyless religion.
Holy Land Pilgrimage 2019
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October 13, 2013 -
The world around us - with its secular spirit, its comfortable and materialistic worldview, with its often conflicting message towards our Christian ethos and morals - anesthetizes us to what is essential and important in our spiritual lives. If we don’t consciously make every concerted effort to listen to the Word of God, to wrestle with understanding how to apply it in our lives, and then to struggle to live it out in our daily lives, then we will also be like the people that Isaiah criticized. Our hearts will have grown dull, our ears will be hard of hearing and our eyes will be blinded.
October 05, 2013 -
The contrast couldn’t be sharper to see on the Narthex table one card that said “Enjoy a night out at the casinos” and the brochures right next to it which invite everyone to, “Encounter Christ in His Church.” Casinos or Christ? They truly represent two radically different worldviews. Gambling vs. Security? Losing Money vs. Finding Eternal Riches? Taking advantage of others, especially the poor vs. Helping others, especially those in greatest need? Fantasy dreams of jackpots vs. ultimate reality of loving service. Casinos vs. Christ. The contrast couldn’t be greater!