Gladsome Light Dialogues – An Orthodox Blog

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Entries from January 30th, 2010

Fasting abundantly

January 30th, 2010 3 Comments

The idea that any Westerner has about fasting is strongly linked with renunciation, with giving-up, with sacrificing something for God. In the Eastern Orthodox Church however, fasting achieves a much richer meaning. Fasting is not only about giving-up, but it is actually more about gaining, about being able to reach things that are possible only through this spiritual exercise.

In a legalistic understanding of salvation some believe that Christ has come on earth to fulfill a duty, to repair an offense that man has brought unto God. His sacrifice on the Cross satisfies this need and mankind enters again in God’s favors. From this perspective fasting is a similar symbol: a personal sacrifice that one makes to step back… Continue reading

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Being Present in the Presence – Archmandrite Meletios (Webber)

January 29th, 2010 2 Comments

Yesterday  night, January 27 at 7 PM we had the extraordinary opportunity to host a special session of Gladsome Light Dialogues having as guest Archmandrite Meletios, the Abbot of St. John of St. Francisco Monastery in California.

Archimandrite Meletios (Webber), of Scottish background, was born in London, and received his Masters degree in Theology from Oxford University, England and the Thessalonica School of Theology, Greece. He also holds an E.D.D. (doctorate) in Psychotherapy from the University of Montana, Missoula.

He is the author of two published books: Steps of Transformation; an Orthodox Priest Explores the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous (Conciliar Press, 2003); and Bread and Water, Wine and Oil; an Orthodox Christian Experience of… Continue reading

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Concerning Angels by Metropolitan ISAIAH of Denver

January 26th, 2010 No Comments

Due to a series of unfortunate events I recently watched the super Holywood production “Legion”. Five minutes into the movie I wished I was not there and by the end I concluded that nothing is sacred to the film industry. The movie is an apocaliptical  thriller about the destruction of humankind by God that got fed-up with humankind.  So He sends out a zombie-like army led by an obedient Archangel Gabriel that stops to nothing in fulfilling their mission. The problem starts when the Archangel Michael disagrees with God and goes on to fight back with knives, machine guns and bazookas. Go figure.

Leaving  aside the fact that the movie is so bad, the most horrifying thing to me is the eroneous depiction… Continue reading

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’s den – The passions of Fr. Gheorghe Calciu Dumitreasa">Into the lions den – The passions of Fr. Gheorghe Calciu Dumitreasa

January 8th, 2010 2 Comments

I recently found this article on the wonderful website http://www.orthodoxphotos.com. Fr. Gheorghe Calciu spent 21 years in the communist prisons and was a symbol of freedom fighting for all Romanians. I knew Fr. Gheorghe personally in the last few years of his life.  He went to meet his beloved Lord in November 2006. The story he shares in the following text is a perfect example of human struggle for something better, for something beyond the crude reality of a rejecting world.

You can read more about Fr. Gheorghe at this wiki page:

http://ro.orthodoxwiki.org/Gheorghe_Calciu-Dumitreasa

Note: The photo was taken at the Romanian Episcopate Congress in 2003. Fr. Gheorghe always used to joke… Continue reading

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Theophany – reflections on the baptism of our Lord Jesus Christ

January 6th, 2010 No Comments

The word Baptism comes, to no surprise,  from Greek: baptisma, meaning immersion into water. So baptism is linked with water by definition. It is the general understanding that through the baptism the person that is baptized is receiving a blessing. In Christ case however the things  are different.  John’s baptism was a baptism of repentance for the remission of sins, but Christ had no sin.  Here is what a troparion form the Orthros service of the feast says: 

Christ is baptized with us, even though He is above all purity; and thus He infuses  sanctification into the water, which then becomes the purifying agent of our souls.

 Through the baptism of the Lord the waters received God’s blessing, being transformed in… Continue reading

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