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COVID-19: An Orthodox Response

covid-19

The COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting lockdown of much of the civilized world is well underway. In some parts of the United States the restrictions on travel and interaction are relaxing. In other parts, the conflict between freedom and security …

Pascha: Trampling Down Death

The celebration of Pascha this year is not as we expected. There’s an added sadness in the story of the Passion and of Christ’s descent into Hades. But I believe there is an even greater hope. Attempts to mitigate the …

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This is Needed for My Salvation

Is the Coronavirus a punishment from God? My social media feeds seem to think so. The COVID-19 virus has changed us forever. We look at each other differently in the grocery store – assuming you even have ventured out in …

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Sickness: It’s Good For You

it's good for you

It’s good for you. As a child in bed with a cold, I often watched with bleary eyes as my mother brought me a bowl of chicken soup. The steamy, salty broth was her way of caring for both my …

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How to Struggle Against Sin

I saw an item online this morning about a woman who fought off an attempted assault. In the accompanying photo, she is wearing a t-shirt emblazoned with the words she yelled at her attacker. A pattern on the shirt depicts …

Theotokos, Helper In Childbirth

theotokos

This week, Orthodox Christians commemorate the Dormition of the Theotokos – the falling asleep in the Lord of Mary, the mother of Christ. During our Dormition Liturgy I watched as our catechumens stood before the altar. Those in the process …

El Paso Shooting: America Has A Heart Problem

america has a heart problem

Another mass shooting happened this week. This time a young man in El Paso, Texas opened fire in a Walmart, killing 20 people. Just 12 hours later, another gunman killed nine people in an Ohio bar. Families are now mourning …

Saving Lives in Northern Uganda

uganda clinic

In the Gulu District of Northern Uganda, more than 1,500 people died from Ebola since August 2018. It is the second-largest Ebola outbreak on record. The infant mortality rate in Gulu is ten times that of the United States. Malaria …

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How to Deal with Pain

dealing with pain

I’m learning how to deal with pain these days. A few weeks ago I underwent major surgery, and have been in moderate to severe pain ever since. This is probably the longest I’ve ever been debilitated, and it’s not fun. …

A Father’s Day and Pentecost

father's day

Father’s Day was an extra blessing for me this year. My daughter was born just over a year ago and this is the first Father’s Day we’ve had together. I’ve been a stepfather much longer, and that has its own …

The Practice of Prayer

I’m out of practice with my guitar. I’m not a particularly good player, but it’s fun to noodle around and make what music I can. But it’s been weeks since I’ve picked it up, and I know it will take …

Witness To an Orthodox Chrismation

an orthodox chrismation

My Orthodox Chrismation and reception into the Church was just over two years ago. On Palm Sunday I was witness to another Chrismation, as we received another member into the Church. A young man began attending services several months ago, …

Getting the Right Medicine in Confession

getting the right medicine

Getting the right medicine for what ails you involves understanding the ailment itself. Giving your doctor all the details of your symptoms helps in making the right diagnosis. It makes no sense to lie to your doctor about your symptoms. …

Have No Further Concern For Your Sins

have no further concern for your sins

I’m getting a little better at confession. I’m not as good at forgetting my sins. I try not to hold onto my sins after confession. And I do think I’m getting better at letting go each time I confess. But …

Forgiveness Sunday And Getting It Right

Forgiveness Sunday is the final Sunday before Great Lent. It’s also Cheesefare, after which Orthodox Christians abstain from dairy for the length of the fast. After the Divine Liturgy today, we ate macaroni and cheese, blintzes and various dips. It …

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Do You Want To Be Orthodox?

learning to be orthodox

One of my favorite films is Martin Scorcese’s The Departed. It’s a thriller about an undercover cop sent to infiltrate the Irish mafia. His mission is to uncover a mole inside the Boston police department. There’s a line in the …

On Being Unworthy To Serve

unworthy to serve

When I post something on this site, I am writing to you. Some of you are baptized Orthodox Christians. Others are considering Orthodoxy, or merely curious about a faith all but unknown in America. But I try to consider what …

The Panikhida: Prayers For The Departed

the panikhida offers prayers for the departed

Recently our church offered prayers for the departed. A long time member of our parish passed away, and on the evening before his funeral, we held a a panikhida. Our small parish more or less split down the middle on …

Was Hurricane Irma A Punishment From God?

hurricane irma

Hurricane Irma unleashed its fury on the topics and Florida. The storm destroyed homes and upended lives. People across the state are without power and dealing with flooding. Off the southern coast of the state, the destruction is even worse. …

Solar Eclipse Mobile Wallpaper Download

solar eclipse mobile lockscreen

A solar eclipse is passing across the Earth later today. I’ve seen far too many posts on social media about its meaning and its relation to the End Times. God has a plan for this universe and all that is …