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Monday, February 24, 2020

    “As he was now drawing near, at the descent of the Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works that they had seen, saying, ‘Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!’ And some of the Pharisees in the multitude said to him, ‘Teacher, rebuke your disciples.’ He answered, ‘I tell you, if these were silent, the very stones would cry out.’ And when he drew near and saw the city he wept over it, saying, ‘Would that even today you knew the things that make for peace (τὰ πρὸς εἰρήνην)! But now they are hid from your eyes. For the days shall come upon you, when your enemies will cast up a bank about you and surround you, and hem you in on every side, a...

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Commemorating our most holy, pure, blessed, and glorious Lady, the Theotokos and ever-virgin Mary, with all the saints, let us commend (παραθώμεθα, предадим, place before God, hand over) ourselves and one another and our whole life to Christ our God.” (Great Litany, Byzantine Divine Liturgy)

If you’ll forgive this personal note today, because it’s Mother’s Day I’d also like to “commemorate,” and “commend” or “place before” God, in praise and gratitide, the self-giving journey of my mother, Matushka Catherine. I’m remembering how she, a mother of four, made it possible for my father to be a full-time, ROCOR priest (which means a very low salary, insufficient to support a family). She went to work. But when I was a child, my mom had not yet learned English sufficiently, so she could only fin...

Friday, July 8, 2016

Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it in gratitude;” (Col 4: 2)

How, in practical terms, does one go about prayerfully “being watchful,” – and not only “watchful,” but “in gratitude”? In practice, I find that the two are connected. When I am “watchful,” I take note of the ups and downs of my day, jotting these down in a notebook for just a few minutes before I go to sleep. And in connection with prayer this little exercise brings me gratitude, because I begin to see my life as God’s work in progress, as a journey in Him, rather than letting it pass me by meaninglessly. So for me, “life” is not, as John Lennon sadly noted, “what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.”

Today let me take a few minutes to “be watchful,” because I know that this brings me gratitude,...

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