Gladsome Light Dialogues – An Orthodox Blog

A journey through our Orthodox faith as we live it every day

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Entries Tagged as 'lent'

The Great Fast – by Metropolitan Isaiah of Denver

February 28th, 2014 No Comments

Metropolitan Isaiah of Denver

Metropolitan Isaiah – photo courtesy of Vladimir Grigorenko

As we enter into the holiest period of the year in preparation for the glorious Resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, we ask ourselves, “Why should we follow the discipline of fasting, which in essence is abstinence?” What is the purpose of it? Obviously the purpose is that we may be ready to meet our Lord and to receive His promise of eternal life in His Kingdom.

We realize, according to Holy Scripture, that we were created to live forever; and that we will live eternally after the return of Christ to the earth, with our resurrected bodies reunited with our souls. The… Continue reading

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Fasting for Freedom or Growing Wings for God

February 28th, 2012 No Comments

This article is not about Ghandi and the independence of India; is not about hunger strikes and the upholding of civil rights; but it is an attempt to restore to its former heights an overlooked tool for spiritual development, recommended by generations upon generations of Holy Fathers and spiritual elders.

Upon hearing the word “fast” today, one doesn’t think of freedom, on the contrary, the discipline of fasting is more associated with coercion, restriction and limitation of choices. This is the primary reason why so many people do not even consider fasting in their development as Christian.

From a material point of view however this is what fasting is: we abstain from certain foods, or even all… Continue reading

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The Counter Culture Church – Sermon for the Sunday of St. John of the Ladder

April 4th, 2011 4 Comments

We live in a world with blazing speed internet that renders TV, radio and newspapers obsolete, we have access to rapid  couriers that can bring to our doors anything from around the world in 24 hours, we even have churches that promise instant  salvation with a simple declaration of faith.  If there was one word to define our society today that would be instant gratification. With the development of technology this long awaited dream of man is getting closer to becoming reality.

I say long awaited because even in the Biblical times people dreamed of such things. Adam and Eve in paradise were seeking  instant knowledge by eating from the tree of knowledge. The apostles today, after seeing Christ… Continue reading

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Lent as transforming expectation

March 5th, 2011 No Comments

But we all, with our face having been unveiled, having beheld the glory of the Lord as in a mirror, are being changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Lord Spirit. (2Co 3:18)
Coming back home the other day, I observed with great joy that some trees on my street started to blossom. I was immediately moved to think: the winter is over, spring is here! All the cold weather, all the snow and the ice is gone. But, the thought continued, if we won’t pass through winter we couldn’t appreciate spring in its fullness.

One the most beautiful celebrations in Japan is the cherry blossom festival. People gather from afar to be… Continue reading

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Hitting the wall – What happened with St. Mary of Egypt?

March 25th, 2010 No Comments

The expression “Hitting the wall” refers to an athlete, usually a marathon runner or cyclists that during a race they deplete their muscles glycogen reserves and they experience sudden loss of energy and extreme fatigue. In other words they can’t go on with the race, they’re stuck.

This is what happened with St. Mary of Egypt in the church in Jerusalem when she was stopped by an unseen wall to enter the nave. It was like all her spiritual “glycogen” has ran out and there she was, unable to take one more step and enter the Church. Of course you are going to tell me it was God who stopped her because she was unclean, and living in terrible… Continue reading

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