Feast of Sts Philemon and Archippus of the 70
The Feasts of the Lord: An Introduction to the Twelve Feasts and Orthodox Liturgy by Metropolitan Hierotheos Vlachos; translated by Esther Williams
BY SIMPLEST definition, a commentary on the twelve feasts of the Orthodox ecclesial year. But of course, we cannot leave it at that because it is Metropolitan Hierotheos’ Christological interpretation of these feasts (standing squarely on the shoulders of the Church Fathers) that articulates in “a beautiful and inductive way” the nature of their divine economy in the Church. Metropolitan Hierotheos explains that “Christians experience the events of our Lord’s life in accordance with the depth of their spiritual state. Therefore it is not a matter of an outward adaptation of a formal feast, but of spiritual experience, and properly speaking, of a sacramental and ascetic imitation of Christ.” Even the phrase ‘imitation of Christ,’ he says, has been distorted to convey only its ethical dimension when, in truth, it contains and embraces “man’s whole journey towards deification, which is his deepest aim.” Through our practice of asceticism and regular participation in the sacramental life, we experience and live the Feasts of the Lord as “springs of life and salvation,” by the grace of His Eucharistic presence in us. Metropolitan Hierotheos salts his commentary throughout with patristic and biblical references, uniquely conveying the rich possibility of spiritual maturity in Christ and concluding with several chapters discussing particularly difficult Christological issues as they are understood in Orthodox theology.
396 pp. paper $35.00
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