The Resurrection of Christ is for us the joyous and convincing affirmation of the final triumph of God's Truth, the triumph over evil, the triumph over death. However, to be a participant of this final triumph of God's Truth and to celebrate this victory over evil with Christ, the victory over death, we must be "crucified with Christ" while in this earthly life so as to join in His Resurrection. Archbishop Averky Paschal Sermon, 1976
What is the Science of Salvation?
Wednesday, April 30, 2008
Monday, April 28, 2008
Saturday, April 26, 2008
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Christ is Risen! Christos Voskrese! Christos Anesti!
Posted by Sisters Spiritus at 4:24 PM
Friday, April 25, 2008
Endure as you meditate on the loving Master’s sufferings,endure temptations, give thanks from your soul.Blessed is the one who has before his eyesthe heavenly Master and his sufferings,and has crucified himself from all the passionsand earthly deeds,who has become an imitatorof his own Master.This is understanding,this is the attitudeof servants who love God,when they become everimitators of their Masterby good works.
St. Ephraim the Syrian
Posted by Sisters Spiritus at 4:27 AM
Thursday, April 24, 2008
...For this reason the whole order of events, as narrated so fully in the Gospel, must be so accepted by the faithful; that while believing in what was done when the passion of Christ was being fulfilled, we may come to understand that in Christ, not alone were our sins remitted, but there was set here before us the perfect model of love.
St. Leo the Great
"On the Passion of our Lord"
Posted by Sisters Spiritus at 3:35 PM
Wednesday, April 23, 2008
The Lord was able to defend Himself if He wished, not only from Judas and his company of soldiers, but also of the Jewish elders, from Pilate and from the whole Roman Empire. ...For the strength of one angel is geater than the strength of any army of men ...But the Lord would not seek this help from the Father. In His prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane, He had said to the Father: 'Let Your will be done.' And He at once knew the Father's will: that He should give himself over to suffering. It was necessary to let the background be sketched still darker, that the picture of the Resurrection should be the clearer. It was necessary to let evil compete as much as it could, so that, later, it should break and fade away. It was necessary to let evil cry out as loudly as it could, so that it should later be rendered dumb before the wonder of the Resurrection. It was necessary that all human wickedness against God should be revealed, that the love and mercy of God towards man should be seen and valued. The angels who were not sent to defend Christ from the Jews were sent three days later to reveal His holy Resurrection.
Bishop Nikolai Velimirovic
"Prologue from Ochrid"
Posted by Sisters Spiritus at 2:33 PM
Tuesday, April 22, 2008
Let no one rise in anger against the injuries he receives; let no one give back injury for injury. For, imitating God, it is more glorious to turn away in silence from insult, than to triumph over it by answering in kind.
St. Gregory the Great
"The Patience of Christ"
Posted by Sisters Spiritus at 4:37 PM
Monday, April 21, 2008
...What is here made known to our hearts, by these and like testimonies, but that in all things we are to be remade in His likeness Who, remaining by nature God, did not hold it beneath Him to be seen as a servant? For though without taint of sin, He took upon Him all the infirmities which arose from sin, so that He knew hunger and thirst, weariness and the need of sleep, sorrow and tears, and bore to the end the most bitter torments: for no one could be freed from the net of death unless He, in Whom our nature was free of taint, suffered Himself to be put to death at the hands of the wicked. And it was from this that the Son of God Our Saviour gave those who believed in Him both a faith and an example; that they might receive the one by regeneration, and follow the other by imitating Him.
St. Leo the Great
"The Fruits of the Passion"
(The Sunday Sermons of the Great Fathers)
Posted by Sisters Spiritus at 5:45 PM
Sunday, April 20, 2008
Saturday, April 19, 2008
...Before His saving Passion, when the Lord entered the earthly Jerusalem, not just the people, but also the true rulers of the gentiles, the Lord's Apostles, spread their garments in His way. In the same manner, let us all, rulers as well as subjects, lay down our natural garments before Him, by making our flesh and its impulses subject to the spirit, that we may be made worthy not only to see and worship Christ's saving Passion and holy Resurrection, but to enjoy communion with Him. "For if", says the Apostle, "we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection" (Rom. 6:5).
St. Gregory Palamas
"Homily Fifteen: On Palm Sunday"
Posted by Sisters Spiritus at 5:54 PM
Friday, April 18, 2008
Brethren, the most important fortress of the souls of men is the fortress of faith. It is upon this fortress that the devil vehemently attacks with all his arrows and all of his wiles. For the impure and evil spirit knows that when this fortress is destroyed he enslaves the soul of man forever. That is why the holy apostles prayed to the Lord: "Increase our faith" (St. Luke 17:5). Brethren, let us also pray daily that the Lord increases our faith, that He empower and strengthen our faith. The serpent primarily protects its head in danger, which is why the Lord Himself called it wise. Let us also protect the head of our spiritual life which is faith. Nothing in this world can replace faith in God: neither philosophy, nor science, nor treasure, nor glory, neither the entire world from one end to the other with all its transitory illusions. This the devil knows. That is why he especially attacks our faith, instilling doubt in us, causing us to waver, confusing our thoughts and disturbing our hearts. Since the devil knows that faith is the principle thing, it is all the more necessary that we should know it also. Because of us Christ descended to earth, because of us He suffered on the Cross and gave us the covenant of an All-saving Faith. We can neither strengthen faith nor increase faith except through suffering. That is why the much-suffering Apostle Peter says: "That the same afflictions (such as yours) are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world." The apostle does not speak of his affliction out of humility but rather speaks of the affliction of our brethren in Christ. One in faith and one in affliction. Brethren, you do not suffer alone for the True Faith but your other brethren also suffer for the same Faith. Let this comfort your afflictions. But most of all let the afflictions of the First-born in suffering, our crucified Lord Jesus Christ Himself, comfort you.
Bishop Nikolai Velimirovic
"The Prologue from Ochrid"
Posted by Sisters Spiritus at 3:31 PM
Thursday, April 17, 2008
...In your inner make-up I detect fear, doubt, and turbulent agitation. These can only reign in them who have not yet blended the whole of their being with the sweet breath of humility. Read Matt. 11:29 and I Tim. 1:15. The Apostle Peter was always conscious of his sins, and says so; many saints, too, considered themselves great sinners. This, however, did not wake any trace of agitation in their hearts: they had never counted on their own virtues bringing them salvation; they counted only on the achievements and mercy of Christ our Lord.
Letters of Elder Macarius of Optina
Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. (Mattew 11:29)
This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief. (1 Tim. 1:15)
Posted by Sisters Spiritus at 4:16 AM
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
Love the Word of God, that is the Scriptures, handed down to us by the prophets and apostles, as God Himself. For the word of God is the word of God's mouth. If you love God, then without fail you will love the word of God also. For the word of God is God's epistle or letter to us unworthy ones, and is his supreme gift to us for the sake of our salvation. If you love the Sender, then also love the letter which is sent from Him to you. For the word of God is given by God to me, to you, and to everyone, so that everyone who desires to be saved may receive salvation through it.
St. Tikhon of Zadonsk
"Journey to Heaven"
Posted by Sisters Spiritus at 6:20 PM
Monday, April 14, 2008
Sunday, April 13, 2008
Saturday, April 12, 2008
The inevitable and inescapable action of compassionate, grace filled love consists only in leading the soul out of its state of moral indifference, distraction and incomprehension to a definite decision, to be with God or against Him. Metropolitan Antony Khrapovitski "The Dogma of Redemption"
Posted by Sisters Spiritus at 5:59 PM
Friday, April 11, 2008
The Virgin Mother, and she alone, is the frontier between created and uncreated nature. All who know God will recognize her as the one who contained Him Who cannot be contained. All who sing hymns to God will praise her next to Him. She is the cause of the benefits which preceded her, the protectress of those which came after, and through her those good things which are eternal shall be received. She is the theme of the prophets, the first of the Apostles, the support of the martyrs, the dais of the teachers. She is the glory of those on earth, the delight of those in heaven, the adornment of the whole Creation. She is the beginning, fount and root of the hope stored up for us in heaven. St. Gregory Palamas Homily 14: On the Annunciation
Posted by Sisters Spiritus at 8:00 PM
Thursday, April 10, 2008
Attention is the first teacher of truth and consequently absolutely necessary. Attention rouses the soul to study itself and its longings, to learn their true character and repulse those that are unholy. Attention is the guardian angel of the intellect, always counseling it thus : be attentive. Attention awakens the soul, rouses it from sleep... Attention examines every thought, every desire, every memory. Thoughts, desires, and memories are engendered by various causes, and often appear masked and with splendid garb, in order to deceive the inattentive intellect and enter into the soul and dominate it. Only attention can reveal their hidden form. Often their dissimulation is so perfect that the discernment of their true nature is very difficult and requires the greatest attention. One must remember the saving words of the Lord: "Be wakeful and pray that ye enter not into temptation." He who is wakeful does not enter into temptation, because he is vigilant and attentive.
St. Nectarios of Pentapolis
"Writings" (compiled by Fr. Demetrios Serfes)
Posted by Sisters Spiritus at 5:34 PM
Wednesday, April 9, 2008
Saint Peter rushed with a drawn sword to the defence of the God-Man when He was surrounded with malefactors. But the most gentle Lord Jesus said to Peter: Put thy sword into its sheath. Shall I not drink the cup which the Father has given Me? (John 18, 11).
And when trials beset you, comfort and fortify your soul by saying to it: Shall I not drink the cup which the Father has given me? The Chalice is bitter. One has merely to glance at it, and all human calculations vanish. Substitute faith for calculation, and courageously drink the bitter cup. It is the all-good and all-wise Father Who gives it to you. It was not Pharisees, of Caiaphas, or Judas who prepared it. It is not Pilate and his soldiers who give it. Shall I not drink the cup which the Father has given Me?
Bishop Ignatius Brianchaninov
"The Chalice of Christ"
Posted by Sisters Spiritus at 2:17 PM
Tuesday, April 8, 2008
As there is an overabundance of sources of water on earth, and all drink from them, come and draw freely, for the Lord is an ocean of spiritual waters; come and draw all the spiritual good with the dipper of true, firm, and unashamed faith. Only extend this hearty dipper and you will inevitably draw abundantly the water of life, the forgiveness of sins, and peace of conscience. But fear doubt; it deprives you of the means of drawing forth every mercy of God.
St. John of Kronstadt
Posted by Sisters Spiritus at 6:11 PM
Monday, April 7, 2008
...So if the conception of God had been from seed, He would not have been a new man, nor the Author of new life which will never grow old. If He were from the old stock and inherited its sin, He would not have been able to bear within Himself the fullness of the incorruptible Godhead or to make His Flesh an inexhaustible Source of sanctification, able to wash away even the defilement of our First Parents by its abundant power, and sufficient to sanctify all who came after them. That is why neither an angel nor a man came to save us, but the Lord Himself, Who was conceived and took flesh in the womb of a virgin, while remaining unchanged as God.
St. Gregory Palamas
"On the Annunciation of Our Exceedingly Pure Lady, Mother of God
and Ever-Virgin Mary"
Posted by Sisters Spiritus at 3:58 PM
The sun is reflected in clear water, and heaven in a pure heart.
God the Holy Spirit has many abodes in this vast universe, but a pure human heart is the place in which He most delights to dwell. This is His true abode; all others are only His workshop.
Bishop Nikolai Velimirovic
Homily on The Annunciation
Posted by Sisters Spiritus at 3:18 AM
Saturday, April 5, 2008
Friday, April 4, 2008
Prayers, too, after reading, find the soul fresher, and more vigorously stirred by love towards God. And that prayer is good which imprints a clear idea of God in the soul; and the having God established in self by means of memory is God's indwelling. Thus we become God's temple, when the continuity of our recollection is not severed by earthly cares; when the mind is harassed by no sudden sensations; when the worshipper rites from all things and retreats to God, drawing away all the feelings that invite him to self-indulgence, and passes his time in the pursuits that lead to virtue.
St. Basil the Great
Posted by Sisters Spiritus at 4:09 PM
Thursday, April 3, 2008
Daily I expect murder, fraud, or captivity, or whatever it may be; but I fear none of these things because of the promises of heaven. I have cast myself into the hands of God Almighty, who rules everywhere, as the prophet says: Cast thy thought upon God, and He shall sustain thee.
"St. Patrick's Confession"
Posted by Sisters Spiritus at 5:11 PM
Wednesday, April 2, 2008
Tuesday, April 1, 2008
During fasting, thankfulness grows toward Him who has given humanity the possibility of fasting. Fasting opens the entrance to a territory that you have scarcely glimpsed: the expressions of life and all the events around you and within you get a new illumination, the hastening hours a new, wide-eyed and rich purpose. The vigil of groping thought is replaced by a vigil of clarity; troublesome searching is changed to quiet acceptance in gratitude and humility. Seemingly large, perplexing problems open their centres like the ripe calyces of flowers: with prayer, fasting and vigil in union, we may knock on the door we wish to see opened.
Here we find the reason that fasting is often used as a measuring-stick by the holy Fathers: he who fasts much is he who loves much, and he who has loved much is forgiven much (Luke 7:47). He who fasts much also receives much.
"The Way of the Ascetics"
Posted by Sisters Spiritus at 3:59 PM