Surgut wakes up to remind us that we are only about 5 degrees south of the Arctic Circle. The warm weather anomaly ceased yesterday as temperatures dropped by over 20 degrees Fahrenheit and we dug out the few sweaters and jackets we brought to make the trek to church for the feast.
Some people might tell you not to smoke, but is there any reason that they tell you that? Yes, there is, and the people who tell you this information might not even know these facts. Smoking can lead to a very bad habit that can lead to death. When you breath in your nose hairs trap large dust, but not all of the bad stuff that can get in your nose. Tiny hairs in your nose passages trap the rest of the dirt and lead it away from your lungs. Most people know that smoking can lead to lung cancer, but what they do not know is that when you smoke regularly for even 2 weeks the tiny hairs start to disappear. Continue reading →
In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen. Glory to Jesus Christ! Glory forever. What can a young child really do? What is a young boy or girl good for besides growing up into adulthood? Aren’t we adults the ones who run the church and isn’t their place merely to respect and obey instruction until the time comes when they are old enough to run things themselves? While I would agree with at least this assessment of the role of children in the church, I challenge us to see a deeper dimension of these to whom our Lord promised that the Kingdom of Heaven belongs. These same youths that the Apostle Paul enjoined in his letter to Timothy not to despise because of their youthfulness. Continue reading →
It is super hard to move away from a home that you grew up in. If you lived in one place for over seven years, you would probably be very attached to the house. The first time I ever moved was when I was ten years old.
At the beginning, when I was told our family was going to move, it seemed worse than it really was, because I was looking at the bad side of things. One time in the car, my mom told me that moving is like holding a half full glass of water. Half of the glass is empty standing for the bad things about moving. The part with water stands for the good things.
There is a saying “If life gives you sour lemons make lemonade out of them”. This means that instead of walking around sulking and crying instead make your life full of excitement. That way, the next time you move, you won’t be so scared.
Witnessed the yearly piano recital of my two oldest today in the public hall of the Waltham Public Library. Hearing their lovely melodies and inspired playing reminded me of one of my boss’ best articles on the subject of music, inspiration, and worship. Enjoy!
Katertyna Tereshchenko, Pianist by Ralf Roletschek; online at wikipedia.org
This past summer, my 10 year-old son made a significant breakthrough in his piano playing. All last year, I watched him practice as though practicing was just one more task on his “to do” list before breakfast. He marched through 20 minutes of practicing just as he marched through “make my bed,” “feed the dog,” and “pack my snack.” Where was the joy, the appreciation of beauty, the sense of accomplishment? Masterpieces from Bach to Bizet were reduced to equal footing with readied backpacks and signed permission slips. The tasks were accomplished. And music was nowhere to be heard. Continue reading →
For those of you in my faithful readership who have yet to experience an Orthodox Christian Holy Week, now is your chance. At an Orthodox parish near you, begins a week of services unlike any you have experienced anywhere else on the planet. If you are local to Boston, you are cordially invited to attend all of the services our parish offers. If you can only do one, come to either Saturday morning Liturgy or late Saturday night, early Sunday morning for the Feast of Feasts, GREAT AND HOLY PASCHA.
Worse case scenario, if you are unable to appear hypostatically (in person), you can at least listen to a youtube channel created that has much of the key music or the ever-mellifluous Ancient Faith Radio. WARNING: Once you have gone to one service, you won’t be able to stop, so clear your schedule for God because He deserves your praise more than baseball games, concerts, or that addicting TV series. Let the divine drama begin!
I have a friend and fellow graduate of a one-time missionary school held in an Orthodox Monastery in California. This friend reminded me of an old movie list that he has recently decided to resurrect for the salvation of his own soul and those of his immediate circle in memory of the former Abbot who authored the list, Fr. Herman Podmoshensky. I offer the list here in memory of the same Abbot, whose love and selfless devotion birthed in so many of us the need to feed our own souls along with our spirits.
May this list of old time favorites help spark your memory of a time when Hollywood was less besotted with entertainment that merely titillated but never transformed, a time when Tinseltown had a moral backbone and a heart of gold.
Saint Paisius Missionary School Must See Movie List
Homily for Christmas, 2016 Isaiah 9:2-7 Titus 2:11-14 Luke 2:1-14(15-20) Psalm 96 For my homily this evening I will refer to the photos printed in the order of service on the front and back covers, and on page 11. The photos were cover photos for the New York Times in the fall of 2015. These photos […]
“I’m a Christian, so I don’t go to parties,” said a person to me recently. There was a time in my life I would have accepted such a judgment about parties without qualification. The theology behind the idea of canceling Christmas is partly to blame for this tepid approach to life. Indeed the Lord does give his peace to us not as the world gives with the implication that all worldly parties without Him will always fall short of the mark. But where does this trepidation towards partying in general and towards specific Christian feasts/parties mean for the life in Christ? How do we answer Scrooge’s argument to his jubilant nephew in our musical adaptation of Dicken’s classic Carol:
“The 25th of December from what I remember is no special day, just a date.”Continue reading →
Monday, November 15/28, 2016
First Day of the Nativity Fast
Commencement of Advent in the Orthodox Church
It has been a New Year’s resolution of my oldest daughter since she saw her first show three years ago: To act and sing in a production of New Life Fine Arts out of Concord, MA. What she saw in Ebezener Scrooge: A Christmas Carol sparked her imagination while deepening her understanding of this literary character’s repentance. Now that three of us have been blessed to be chosen as cast members in this year’s production, it has allowed us an even more intimate acquaintance with NLFA’s uniquely spiritual approach to musical theatre. Continue reading →