Feast of St Euthymius the Great
Dr. Adam G. Cooper recently corresponded with Carl E. Olson, editor of Catholic World Report, about his newest books—Naturally Human, Supernaturally God: Deification in Pre-conciliar Catholicism and Holy Eros: A Liturgical Theology of the Body—and his research into salvation, liturgy, theosis, the meaning of the body, and the crucial relationship between celibacy and marriage.
CWR: At first glance, these two books might appear to...
Feast of St Athanasius & Cyril, Patriarchs of Alexandria
FIRST THINGS recently published a piece I wrote titled “Eight Theses on Sex.” In the first thesis, I suggested that sexual union is a sacrament of union with Christ. I took my cue from Saint Paul’s statement in Ephesians 5 that the one-flesh relationship between husband and wife is a profound mystery that refers to Christ and the Church (Eph....
2019 Symposium Abstract 7: David Ford - "From Garden to the Eschaton: The Eternality of Marriage as Understood in the Orthodox Church"
Feast of the Venerable St Dominica the Righteous
While a minority view within the Orthodox Church would limit marriage only to this present life, the prevailing understanding has been and continues to be that marriage is meant to last forever – just as Adam and Eve shared a marital relationship that was meant to be endless, and just as Christ’s love for and intimacy with His flock are endless....
2019 Symposium Paper Abstract 4: Adam Cooper - "Can Asceticism Make Us Better Lovers? The Promise & Limits of Maximus the Confessor's Theology of Marriage"
Feast of St Pope Sylvester I
ST MAXIMUS the Confessor’s theology of marriage confronts spouses with a severe ascetic regime and offers apparently bleak prospects for erotic joy. His teaching combines a phenomenologically alert understanding of the divided and sin-bent self with an eschatologically tempered sense of the vulnerability of marriage and sexuality. But Maximus also wants us all to be better lovers, with our desires and energies liberated...
2019 Symposium Paper Abstract 3: David Ford - "An Orthodox Theology of Eros, Sexuality & Marriage: The Vision of St John Chrysostom"
Feast of the Holy Prophet Daniel
OF ALL THE Eastern Church Fathers, the one who spoke the most about eros, sexuality, and marriage was St. John Chrysostom, the powerfully eloquent, late fourth-century preacher of Antioch and Constantinople. As he ministered to the mostly married members of his flock, he shared his high view of the glories of marriage, especially when it is centered in Christ and lived in His...
Feast of the Holy Prophet Micah
THE SIXTH evening brought back the beginning of night,
Driving away the light with the alternation of the times of day.
As all living things sought welcome rest,
Adam settled down to sleep, his limbs relaxed.
The Almighty Father induced in him a deep slumber
That overwhelmed him, dulling his senses with a great heaviness
So that no force could awaken his soundly sleeping...
Feast of the Holy Apostles Archippus, Philemon & Onesimus
IN THE NAME of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, Amen.
“This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and His Church.” These words were written by the Apostle Paul in the first century concerning marriage to the church community of Ephesus. This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the Church. What, pray...
Feast of the Righteous Fathers Sergius & Herman, Founders of Valaam Monastery
Toward a Eucharistic Vision of Church, Family, Marriage and Sex by Philip LeMasters
THE AUTHOR describes this work as “an ‘apologetic’ essay that aims to ground sex and marriage in the Church’s understanding of the Eucharist.'” Sex and Eucharist in one essay?! Certainly, no other topics could seem more divergent, even opposed, yet LeMasters claims to see...
Feast of the Righteous Fathers Sergius & Herman, Founders of Valaam Monstery
LAST FALL, I attended a wedding for a work friend of my fiancé. It was an unofficiated union for two women who had fallen in love and were deeply committed to each other. In my heart, I wished them well.
But I didn't tell anyone at the time. I didn't want to seem either approving or disapproving; I...