A Reflection on Second Corinthians

My dear sisters and brothers, I write to you in contemplation of our deaths, “for we are convinced that One has died for all; therefore, all have died.” And I write to you in contemplation of our Life, for “He died for all, so that those who live might live no longer for themselves, but […]

To Enter Into His Glory

It’s Sunday afternoon. Two disciples of Jesus are walking to Emmaus, a few miles away from Jerusalem. As they walk, they discuss the bizarre events of the previous days. Their leader – a man named Jesus whom they had followed as he cast out demons, healed the sick, and raised the dead – had been […]

Signs and Wonders of Repentance

[The following was presented at the House of St Michael the Archangel Devotional Conference in January of 2012] Jesus acts in and through the Church which acts in his Name.  In the book of Acts, Luke tells us about the signs and wonders which characterized the life of the early Church – signs and wonders […]

Prayer without thoughts

[The following was presented at the House of St Michael the Archangel Devotional Conference in January of 2012] Attentiveness is the heart’s stillness, unbroken by any thought. […] If we have not attained prayer that is without thoughts, we have no weapon to fight with. — Hesychios Prayer without thoughts. What does it mean to […]

Counting the cost

Symeon lives the divine life through the practice of the virtues. Throughout his entire Hymns on Divine Eros, he focuses on the wedding of the virtuous life and the knowledge of Christ. Specifically, I want to highlight the union in Hymn 28 in the context of vigilance and repentance.  Here, in his own practice of […]

On Mary, With Gratitude

As I prepare for Thanksgiving, Advent, and our reading series on Jacob of Serug’s homilies on Mary, it seems only right to pause and give thanks for the Mother of God. She has become an important model for me in many ways, and like Jacob, I hope to speak of her with love and reverence. […]

To what does Christ save us?

or:  Thoughts on Fear, Love, and Salvation But if it is possible to be saved | without love, O my Christ, |how shall this be? | Impossible!  If we were separated from the light, | how shall we flee the darkness? | If we were deprived of joy, | how would we be free from […]

Hands

” . . . I move my hand and my hand is Christ entire.” -St. Symeon the New Theologian, Hymn 15, line 144. Skin, dirt, blood, grass.  Oil, ink, paint, metal. Handshake, caress, slap, punch. Look at our hands.   Think of the mundane everyday grime we get on our hands and casually wash off.  Think […]

The Pursuit of the Flaming Sonnet

As we have said, from the instant we are baptized, grace is hidden in the depths of the intellect, concealing its presence even from the perception of the intellect itself. When someone begins, however, to love God with full resolve, then in a mysterious way, by means of intellectual perception, grace communicates something of its […]

It’s Like Riding A Horse

Reading St. John of Karpathos has been a source of great encouragement.  This ought to come as no surprise since the preface revealed that John wrote “Texts for the Monks in India” precisely to encourage young monks being tempted to abandon the monastic life.  This reading comes, I think, at a wonderful time for us […]