A Prayer in Time of Trouble

O God, You are our help and assistance, who is just and merciful, and who hears the supplications of Your people; look down upon me, a sinner, have mercy upon me, and deliver me from this trouble that besets me. I acknowledge and believe, O Lord, that all trials of this life are given by You for our chastisement When we drift away from You and disobey Your commandments; deal not with me after my sins, but according to Your bountiful mercy, for I am the work of Your hands, and You know my weakness. Grant me, I beseech You, Your divine helping grace, and endow me with patience and … [Read more...]

Tender Love and the Dormition

Imagine the blessed Theotokos in old age being cared for by St. John the Evangelist. That is the image Frederica beautifully portrays for us in today's podcast for the Feast of the Dormition. Read more of her thoughts on the Virgin Mary in her newest book The Lost Gospel of Mary. Listen here: [audio:http://audio.ancientfaith.com/frederica/fhn_2008-08-14.mp3] … [Read more...]

“It is Truly Meet…” Sung in an American Style

The monks at St. John Monastery in California released this Hymn to the Theotokos a while back sung in an American idiom. They want to see how the Byzantine hymns could be sung in a way true to their musical meaning yet incorporating the tones and cadences that are unique to America and define our cultural legacy (think music scores for Westerns for example). I think they succeed. It almost sounds like it could be sung around a campfire, yet at the same time it still has the Byzantine feel to it. … [Read more...]

Fr. Hans speaks about the “New Atheists” on ‘Ancient Faith Today’ [AUDIO]

The "New Atheists" -Fr. Hans is involved in a live, call-in program on Ancient Faith Radio that deals with contemporary issues. From the 'Ancient Faith Today' site: Ancient Faith Today is what Ancient Faith Radio and Orthodox Internet radio have been missing—a live inter-active conversation program. Now that void has been filled! Ancient Faith Today streams live, with call-ins from around the world, twice a month on Sunday nights at 5:00pm Pacific/7:00pm Central/8:00pm Eastern on Ancient Faith Radio Talk. View more information 'Ancient Faith Today' website including a schedule of upcoming … [Read more...]

Catholic Online and the Acton Insitute Publishes Fr. Hans’ Essay

Last week I mentioned an essay I wrote that would be published soon. It was first published on the Acton Institute website and then picked up by Catholic Online. The essay follows. With the Rise of Militant Secularism, Rome and Moscow Make Common Cause The Acton Institute just published my essay. Source: Acton Institute | Fr. Johannes L. Jacobse The European religious press is abuzz over recent developments in Orthodox – Catholic relations that indicate both Churches are moving closer together. The diplomatic centerpiece of the activity would be a meeting of Pope Benedict and Patriarch … [Read more...]

Ten Tips for Holy Week and Pascha

I saw these last year on Fr. Peter Preble's blog, and thought they were excellent to bring into focus what is really important during this sacred season. 1. Make participation at the Services a priority. This is especially crucial for those families with children. They must experience as much of Holy Week and Pascha as possible with their parents. 2. In our homes we should strive to “keep out the world” and enter into the peace, solemnity, and theology of the events of the last days of our Lord. 3. Be sure to read the last chapters of the Holy Gospels that speak of the Passion, Death, … [Read more...]

Christ of the Folded Napkin

by Fr. Patrick Henry Reardon Another gem of Scripture and sense from Fr. Patrick, this one comes to us from Orthodoxytoday.org. Using the narrative third-person, the evangelist John describes his arrival with Peter at the tomb of Jesus: "So they both ran together, and the other disciple outran Peter and came to the tomb first. And he, stooping down and looking in, saw the linen cloths lying; yet he did not go in. Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb; and he saw the linen cloths lying, and the kerchief that had been around His head, not lying with the linen … [Read more...]

The Days of Holy Week

Each day in Holy Week is devoted to a particular theme, and since they pass quickly, here they are for your meditation in advance. PALM SUNDAY: The Entrance of our Lord into Jerusalem is one of the Twelve Great Feasts of the Christian Faith, and celebrated with great honor. We commemorate his entrance into His saving Passion for us, and like the Apostle Thomas, prepare ourselves to “go and die with Him,” following the services of Holy Week which follow. A grand procession of palms will take place at the end this Sunday’s service. HOLY WEEK BEGINS: On Palm Sunday evening the … [Read more...]

Are You Saved?

Metropolitan Kallistos Ware of Oxford University gives us the Orthodox answer. … [Read more...]

Who was St. Valentine?

Source: Mystagogy The Martyrdom of the Saint in Rome Saint Valentine lived in Rome in the third century and was a priest who helped the martyrs during the persecution of Emperor Claudius II the Goth. The great virtue and catechetical activities of the Saint had become known. For this he was arrested and brought before the imperial court. "Why, Valentine, do you want to be a friend of our enemies and reject our friendship?" asked the Emperor. The Saint replied: "My lord, if you knew the gift of God, you would be happy together with your empire and would reject the worship of idols … [Read more...]