Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Jordanville Journal

All my current blogging activities are now concentrated on my new blog, centered around life at Holy Trinity Orthodox Seminary at Jordanville, New York.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Orthodox Elders (Youtube Playlist)

I spent some time searching for videos of Orthodox elders in English. Greek, Romanian, and Serbian elders are represented here. I haven't found any Russian elders on Youtube, but I'll add them when they come available.

I also include a 5-part documentary on the Monastic Republic of Mount Athos.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

This Has Been From Me

Note: My roommate, who is also moving out, invited me to take some old “Orthodox journals” he stores in a file cabinet downstairs. I found many issues of Orthodox America, as well as leaflets (more like Xeroxed samizdat) like this. More to come in the next few days.

This Has Been From Me

Have you ever thought that all that concerns you also concerns Me equally? For what concerns you concerns the apple of My eye. You are dear in My eyes; you are precious, and I love you, and for this reason it is a particular joy for Me to raise you.

When temptations rise up against you, if the enemy comes against you like a river, I want you to now that this is from Me. I am God Who arranges your circumstances. It is not by accident that you find yourself in your position; it is the very position which I have foreordained for you. Have you asked that I teach you humility? Then look: I have placed you in just the right school where this lesson can be learned. Your surroundings and those who live with you only carry out My will.

Do you find yourself in financial difficulties; it is difficult for you to make ends meet? This has been because of Me, for I control your purse. I want you to flee to Me and to be dependent upon Me. My riches are inexhaustible. I want you to be convinced of My faithfulness and My promises.

Are you going through a night of sorrow? This also is from Me, for I am a Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. I have permitted this so that you may turn to Me and may find everlasting consolation.

Have you been disappointed in your friend or in someone to whom you opened your heart? This has been from Me. I have permitted this disenchantment to touch you, so that you might know the Lord is the best friend you have. I want you to bring everything to Me and to believe in Me.

Has anyone slandered you? Place this matter before Me and cleave all the closer to Me, your refuge. I will bring forth your righteousness like light and your uprightness like the noonday.

Have your plans fallen apart? Have your spirits fallen and have you become tired? This is from Me. You have founded your plans and brought them to Me that I might bless them; but I want you to leave to Me the disposition of your circumstances; then responsibility for everything will rest upon Me, for this is too onerous for you; you alone are not able to cope with everything; you are only an instrument, not an active person.

Have you dreamed of doing some special deed for Me, but instead have taken to a bed of pain and illness? This is from Me. When you were immersed in your affairs, I was unable to draw your thoughts to Myself; and I wish to teach you My most profound thoughts, because you are in My service and I wish to teach you to be aware that you are nothing. Some of My best fellow-warriors are those who have been cut off from outward activity that they might learn to master the weapon of continuous prayer.

Have you been called unexpectedly to occupy a difficult and responsible position? Go forth, relying on Me; I am entrusting these difficulties to you, for your Lord God Jesus Christ blesses you for this, in all your works, in everything that will be done by your hands. On that day I will give into your hands this vessel of sanctified oil, My blessing: use it freely, My child. Let every difficulty which arises, every word that grieves you, every obstacle in your labor which may elicit a feeling of vexation, every revelation of your weakness and inability, be anointed with this oil.

Remember that every hindrance is an instruction from God. Every goad becomes dulled if you learn to see Me in all things, in whatever touches you; and therefore cherish these words which I reveal to you today, in your heart: this is from Me. For this is not an empty saying for you, but your life…

(Manuscript taken from the Catacomb underground Church of Russia in 1942.)

Montreal, 1984.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Moving to Wordpress

Since all the cool kids are ditching Blogger for Wordpress, I decided to join the club. If you feel like it, you can join me at The Impractical Christian.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

My Daily Life in Christ: Only Christ keeps me alive!

When your heart inclines to evil, and the evil one begins to undermine your heart, so that it is completely removed from the rock of faith, then say to yourself inwardly: "I know of my spiritual poverty, my own nothingness without faith. I am so weak, that it is only by Christ's name that I live and obtain peace, that I rejoice and my heart expands, whilst without Him I am spiritually dead, I am troubled, and my heart is oppressed; without the Lord's Cross I should have been long since the victim of the most cruel distress and despair. Only Christ keeps me alive: and the Cross is my peace and my consolation.

From My Life in Christ, by St. John of Kronstadt, page 5.

My Daily Life in Christ: Introduction

My Godfather lent me his copy of St. John of Kronstadt's My Life in Christ. Every day until Holy Saturday (April 26) I will post excerpts from this wonderful spiritual work that I found personally helpful. Here is St. John's introduction:

I do not precede my book by any introduction: let it speak for itself. Everything contained in it is but a gracious enlightenment which was bestowed upon my soul by the all-enlightening Holy Ghost during moments of deep self-concentration and of self-examination, especially during prayer. When I had time, I noted down the edifying thoughts and feelings that came to me, and from these notes, continued for many years, this book has now been compiled; the contents are very varied, as will be seen by the readers. Let them judge of them for themselves.

"He that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man." (1 Corinthians 2:15)

Chesterton Day by Day

IT may be a very limited aim in morality to shoot a 'many-faced and fickle traitor,' but at least it is a better aim than to be a many-faced and fickle traitor, which is a simple summary of a good many modern systems from Mr. d'Annunzio's downwards.

'The Defendant.'

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Long Live Serbia!

While the great Shakespeare was writing his tragedies in ink, the Serbs wrote their tragedies in blood…While Milton was writing ‘Paradise Lost’, the Serbs felt more deeply than anyone else in the world that they had indeed lost Paradise…While Adam Smith was composing his great work ‘The Wealth of the Nations’, the Serbian people possessed only one great wealth - a strong faith and the hope of holiness.

St Nicolas of Zhicha, Serbia in Light and Darkness, a lecture given in Canterbury Cathedral, 1919.

I stand with my Serbian brothers and all right-thinking individuals in opposing the illegal secession of Kosovo. May God protect the Serbian people!

Sunday, February 10, 2008

New Martyrs

From the video:
"This is from the opus 31 setting of the Liturgy by Sergei Rakhmaninov. This video is dedicated to the New Russian Martyrs. The image sequence begins with the trial of St Veniamin of Petrograd, then, icons of the martyrs follow, with individual and corporate icons alternating. This is to show that the martyrdom of the New Russian Confessors was both a personal and united podvig (act of courage). To close the sequence of the martyrs, I chose the icon of the Finding of the Relics of Patriarch St Tikhon. This is a thematic bridge between the past events and the present day. The final image is the Mother of God Stand for Christ with the Martyr's Cross. That needs no commentary.

The blood of the New Martyrs is the seedbed of the current revival in Russia. This is my tribute to them."

Holy Royal Martyrs, pray to God for us!
Holy New Martyrs and Confessors of Russia, pray to God for us!