St Ignatius Brianchaninov: Have You Ceased Studying the Gospel?

Feast of St. Macrina, Grandmother of St Basil the Great

Brianchaninov_Square_2.jpegTHE HOLY Fathers declare that “anyone who truly wants to be saved should first live with people and endure annoyances, slights, privations and humiliations, and be freed from the influence of his feelings and senses, and only then go into complete solitude or silence. This our Lord Jesus Christ demonstrated even in His own case. For it was only after... Continue Reading

The Nicene Fathers: Do You Believe the Son of God Is Begotten, Not Made, Consubstantial with the Father?

Feast of the Fathers of the First Ecumenical Council at Nicaea

Church_Father_Square.jpgWE BELIEVE in one God, Father Almighty Maker of all things, seen and unseen; and in one Lord Jesus Christ the Son of God, begotten as only begotten of the Father, that is of the being of the Father, God of God, Light of Light, true God of true God, begotten not made, consubstantial (homoousion) with the Father, through... Continue Reading

St Vincent of Lerins: Do You Constantly Read the Holy Fathers?

Feast of St Vincent of Lerins

Vincent_Lerins_Square_1.jpegI, PEREGRINUS, who am the least of all the servants of God, remembering the admonition of Scripture, “Ask thy fathers and they will tell thee, thine elders and they will declare unto thee” (Deut. 32.7), and again, “Bow down thine ear to the words of the wise” (Prov 22.17), and once more, “My son, forget not these instructions, but let... Continue Reading

Fr Dumitru Staniloae: Are You Working Toward Your Destiny to Have a Share of Eternity?

Feast of the Holy Martyrs Peter, Dionysius, Andrew, Paul, Christina, Heraclius, Paulinus and Benedimus

Staniloae_Square_4.jpegDIVINE REVELATION tells us of a world of incorporeal spirits who are found to be in solidarity with men and with the sensible world. With respect to the moment when the world of spirits was created, Holy Scripture contains only one reference. This is found in Job and treats that moment as anterior to the creation... Continue Reading

St Maximus the Confessor: Are You Paying All the Attention You Can to Your Soul?

Feast of St Sergios the Confessor

Maximus_Square_4.jpegIF ANYONE wishes his life and mind to be filled with the love of God and to be pleasing to Him, let him respect the better and more noble attributes of these three: the world, the Scriptures, and man as we know him. Let him pay all the attention he can to his soul, for it is immortal, and sacred, and virtues will make... Continue Reading

St Maximus the Confessor: Are You Allowing God to Harmonize You with the Whole Universe?

Feast of St Hilary the Wonderworker

Maximus_Square_3.jpgGOD, AS HE alone knew how, completed the primary principles (logoi) of creatures and the universal essence of beings once for all. Yet He is still at work, not only preserving these creatures in their very existence (to einai) but effecting the formation, progress, and sustenance of the individual parts that are potential within them. Even now in His providence He is bringing about... Continue Reading

St Cyril of Alexandria: Are You Earnest in Following God's Will?

Feast of Martyr Cyril the Deacon and Those with him

Cyril_Alexandria_Square.jpgWHAT THEN is the object of the parable? Let us examine the occasion which led to it; for so we shall learn the truth. The blessed Luke therefore had himself said a little before of Christ the Savior of us all, “And all the publicans and sinners drew near unto Him to hear Him. And the Pharisees and Scribes murmured... Continue Reading

John Scotus Eriugena: Are You God-Seeing Like St. John the Theologian?

Feast of St. Patrick

Eriugena_Square.jpegTHE VOICE of the spiritual eagle strikes in the hearing of the church. May our outer senses grasp its transient sounds and our inner spirit penetrate its enduring meaning.

This is the voice of the bird of high flight – not of the bird who soars above the material air or over the aether, orbiting the entire sensible world – but the voice of that spiritual... Continue Reading

St Ephraim: Do You Have Pure Thoughts at All Times?

Feast of St Procopius the Confessor and St Raphael of Brooklyn

Ephraim_Square_2.jpegBLESSED IS he who has in the Lord become completely free of all earthly things in this troublesome life, and who has loved the one good and merciful God.

Blessed is he who has become a doer of good works and, like a fruitful field, brings forth a great abundance of the fruits of life in the Lord.

Blessed... Continue Reading

St Gregory of Nyssa: Have You Been Brought Back to the Innocence of the Babe

Feast of Theophany and St Theophane the Recluse

Gregory_of_Nyssa_square_2.jpgCHRIST, THEN, was born as it were a few days ago—He Whose generation was before all things, sensible and intellectual. Today He is baptized by John that He might cleanse him who was defiled, that He might bring the Spirit from above, and exalt man to heaven, that he who had fallen might be raised up and he who had cast him... Continue Reading

St Ephraim: Has the Nativity of Christ Increased Your Hope?

Feast of the Ten Martyrs of Crete

Nativity_Square_2.jpegRefrain: Glory to You utterly from all of us.

1. Who, being a mortal, can tell about the Reviver of all, // Who left the height of His majesty and came down to smallness? // You, Who magnify all by being born, magnify my weak mind // that I may tell about Your birth, not to investigate Your majesty, // but to proclaim... Continue Reading

St Ambrose of Milan: Are You Allowing the Crib of Christ to Shine Forth?

Feast of St. Ambrose of Milan

Ambrose_Square_2.jpgHEARKEN, You who rule Israel,

You who sit upon the cherubim.

Appear before Ephraim; rouse up

Your power and come (Cf. Ps. 80.1-2)!

Come, redeemer of the nations,

Show forth the virgin’s begetting.

Let the whole world marvel:

such a birth begets God.

Not by a man’s seed

but by a mystical inbreathing

did the Word of God become flesh

and the fruit of... Continue Reading

Vladimir Lossky: Are You Devoted to the Mother of God?

Feast of the Holy Prophet Habakkuk

Lossky_Square.jpegTHE ORTHODOX Church has not made Mariology into an independent dogmatic theme: it remains integral to the whole of Christian teaching, as an anthropological Leitmotif. Based on Christology, the dogma of the Mother of God has a strong Pneumatological accent; and through the double economy of the Son and the Holy Spirit, it is inextricably bound up with ecclesiological reality.

In truth, if we... Continue Reading

Fr Georges Florovsky: Is God's Image Fading or Being Tuned?

Feast of the Unmercenaries Cosmas and Damian

Florovsky_Square_8.jpgIN SEPARATION from God human nature becomes unsettled, goes out of tune, as it were, is decomposed. The very structure of man becomes unstable. The unity of the soul and the body becomes insecure. The soul loses its vital power, is no more able to quicken the body. The body is turned into the tomb and prison of the soul. And physical death... Continue Reading

St Gregory the Dialogist: Are You a Bright Star?

Feast of St Thecla the Protomartyr & Equal to the Apostles

Gregory_the_Great_Square_4.jpegAMONG THE miracles of God’s providence we can notice how each star takes its place in the firmament of heaven to illuminate the night of our present life, until the Redeemer of the human race, who is the true morning star, rises to end the night. The blackness of night is illuminated by the courses of the stars as... Continue Reading

Origen: Have You Ascended Above the Six Days?

Feast of St. Laurence the Holy Martyr & Archdeacon of Rome

Origen_square_2.jpgAND AFTER six days” (according to Matthew and Mark), “He took Peter and James and John his brother, and led them by themselves up a high mountain. And He was transfigured before them.”

It seems to me not without purpose that those who are being led by Jesus “up the high mountain,” and who are deemed worthy of seeing... Continue Reading

St Ignatius: Are You Bearing Christ on Your Shoulders and of the Same Mind as the Apostles?

Feast of St. Salome the Holy Myrrhbearer

Ignatius_of_Antioch_Square_2.jpegTHERE ARE some people who persistently bandy the Name about with the grossest hypocrisy, besides behaving in a number of other ways that do no credit to God. You must keep away from these men as you would from a pack of savage animals; they are rabid dogs who snap at people unawares, and you need to be on your guard against their... Continue Reading

St Basil the Great: Are You Embracing the Fullness of Wisdom?

Feast of St Paraskeve the Righteous Martyr of Rome

Basil_Square_2.jpgHUNTING TRUTH is no easy task; we must look everywhere for its tracks. Learning truth is like learning a trade; apprentices grow in experience little by little, provided they do not despise any opportunity to increase their knowledge. If a man spurns fundamental elements as insignificant trifles, he will never embrace the fullness of wisdom. “Yes” and “No” are only two... Continue Reading

St Gregory the Theologian: Have You Become Rich Through His Divinity?

Feast of St. Vladimir, Equal to the Apostles

Gregory_Theologian_Square_2.jpgTHE ARTIFICER of the universe, the Logos, created man as a single living creature from both elements, that is to say, from the nature of both the visible and the invisible worlds. On the one hand He took the body from already pre-existing matter, on the other He endowed it with breath from Himself, which Scripture terms the intelligent soul and... Continue Reading

Blessed Theodoret: Do You Believe in That Which Surpasses Human Nature?

Feast of St Martha, Mother of Symeon Stylites

Simeon_Stylites_Square.jpgNOT ONLY all the subjects of the Roman government know the famous Symeon, the great marvel of the world, but even the Persians, the Medes and the Ethiopians. His fame has reached the Scythian nomads and taught his love of labor and his love of wisdom. Now although I have the whole world, so to speak, as witnesses to his indescribable struggles,... Continue Reading