Thursday, March 24, 2011


(Mark 8:34), "If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me."

"Take up thy cross and follow me" mean to get started your journey to the direction of the salvation. Where the cross is the door which leads to the Christ who is the way, the true and the life

On the Third Sunday of Great Lent, we venerate of the Life-saving the Cross
And for this reason:
 where in the forty days of fasting we try to crucify ourselves and test the bitter, but in the way  the Cross who is the source of the power will providing to our spirits the divine light   and assurance, for remembrance of our Lord's
 Like those who are walking in a long way and tedious path are tired, and they found a great tree beside Spring of fresh water its good to restore the power which we had lost in the way in order to continue the journey. As same as today, in the time of fasting where difficult journey and effort, but in that location we are quite tiring, tedious, we find that the Cross awaiting for giving us the light and the power of the spirit supporting us in our holy journey to the resurrection

St. John Chrysostom, a fourth century Patriarch of Constantinople describes the Cross this way: "The Cross is the proof of the love of God. The Cross is the unshaken wall, the unconquered weapon, the Kingdom of virtue. The Cross has torn asunder our mortgage and rendered useless the prison of death. The Cross has opened Paradise, it has admitted the thief and has guided the human race from impending disaster to the Kingdom of God."

I ask for you the blessing and the power of the holy cross

Editor: υπο-διάκονος. Camill Tannous
Orthodox Christianity for Theological Research and Patrimony of church

Sunday, March 13, 2011

The icon of the Sunday of Orthodoxy

The icon of the Sunday of Orthodoxy commemorates the “restoration” of icons in the churches and to their use in Orthodox worship. The focal point of the icon is an icon itself, the Virgin Hodegetria, a popular depiction of the Theotokos as “Directress,” or literally “She who shows the way to God.” The icon is carried by two angels. (1)

The icon of the Virgin Hodegetria, depicting the Theotokos as the "Directress", is processed amongst the people and held on high by two angels.

To the left of the icon is the Empress Theodora and her son Michael III. (2) To the right of the icon are the Patriarchs Methodios and Tarasios. (3) The icon is surrounded by numerous saints who struggled against the Iconoclastic heresy


Emperess Theodora, who proclaimed the veneration      Theodora's son Michael III.
of icons, is depicted to the right of the icon.

To the left of the icon are Patriarch Methodios (left), Bishop Michael of Synnadon (center), and Patriarch Tarasios.

The icon also represents the triumphant procession that was made on Sunday, March 11, 843, from the Church of the Theotokos in Blachernai to Hagia Sophia, where a Liturgy was celebrated to mark the restoration of icons.

Editor: υπο-διάκονος. Camill Tannous
Orthodox Christianity for Theological Research and Patrimony of church

Monday, March 7, 2011

The Great Holy Lent ( Τεσσαράκοντα)

The period of the great Lent before Easter is called by the Orthodox Church, Tessaracoste " Τεσσαράκοντα" which comes from the word forty (the 40 days of "fasting"). This Institute of the 40. days of Lent precedes the Resurrection of Christ.

The celebration of the Resurrection of Christ does not fall on the same date each year, but according to the determination of the position of the moon and spring equinox, which is based on the original setting during the last Events of the life of Christ on earth. This 40-day period of Lent is a period of "abstinence" from foods, but primarily from personal iniquities. Abstinence from foods (fasting) alone is a means of attaining virtue; it is not an end in itself. During the period of fasting one makes a special attempt to evaluate his calling as a Christian; to listen to the voice of the Gospel and heed its commandments; to accept the constant invitation to enter Christ's Kingdom.
 It is an open invitation to everyone willing to enter; who believes in Christ and repents his iniquities; who makes an "about face" directly to Christ. To accomplish this - Which is a year-round concern- the Christian Church, dating back many years, out of experience and according to the nature of man instituted certain days of prayer and fasting as steps in a ladder to help those who need guidance to reach this spiritual plateau. All of these steps must have genuine personal meaning to avoid becoming merely a habit and routine. Fasting encompasses the entire pious life of the Christian, as Christ proclaimed, that symbolizes a deep acceptance of His admonition to "repent".

This can be achieved not so much in terms of time, but in deeds in love of God and one's fellow man.

The Orthodox Liturgical Cycle of the Great Lenten Period:

1- The celebration of the Liturgy of Saint Basil the Great every Sunday

2- The singing of the Akathist " Ακάθιστος" every Friday evening.

3- The celebration of the Liturgy of the Presanctified " Προηγιασμένη" Gifts every Wednesday and Friday evening with Vespers.

4- The celebration of Great Compline "Μέγα Απόδειπνο" from Monday to Thursday

Additional Psalter Readings in the liturgy of the Hours.

Editor: υπο-διάκονος. Camill Tannous
Orthodox Christianity for Theological Research and Patrimony of church

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Vision of St. Paul on the Parishes and Priesthood

In this article my brothers and sisters we are going to highlight the vision of St. Paul on the situation of  the churches and the servants “priesthood”  through comparison between the Letters of St. Paul and the situation of the churches in this period;

Whereas, it is not easy to refer to a particular church because I do not like arguments and therefore we will talk about the situation in general

I prefer here to reflect the fact of the new dioceses and the Parishes in the diaspora, because it is an extension of the original churches in the homelands, such as the Greek Orthodox Church of Antioch and the Greek Orthodox and Russian Orthodox Church,

Whereas, and unfortunately, the migrants who belongs to the Orthodox faith, forgot what they had learned in the Home;  That led to the many risks in the spiritual life, and here I will refer to the two of them

The first bad thing is that, the persons became new characters far away from their origin faith, and little of them are continuing reading in the gospel and the Christian books, Such as the words of St. John Chrysostom, which was the most understanding and aware of the letters of St. Paul. but without spiritual care which led again to understand the wrong about the christ and his church, where
St. John Chrysostom had also pointed to how the priest must behaviour within the parish, which is interpretation to the letters of St. Paul.

The second bad thing according to the letters of St. Paul and the interpretation of St. John the Chrusostom is the behaviour of the Priests where they had changed from servants of the word to become in other direction where they become employees in institutions, looking for how much costs, how much salary, how many hours they work such as 40 hours weekly and so on.

What happening is in contrast to the Vision of St. Paul on the Parishes and Priesthood, where he sent reprimand to the parish of Galatians, addressed them used the hard words but clearly, because the parish there, began losing the way of Christ and went into other directions,
 the situation of Galatians is similar to the most of our new parishes Abroad,
(Galatians 3:1-5)
O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you?
This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?
Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?
Have ye suffered so many things in vain? if it be yet in vain.
He therefore that ministereth to you the Spirit, and worketh miracles among you, doeth he it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?

In his second letter to Corinthians, Paul had teach them parish about the meaning of the apostle “priesthood” and how he must expend himself in the service  
In this part of the letter we could distinguish two missions:
First one, is directed to the parish which do not know the meaning of apostle service and how the parish must to respect the apostle,

The second is directed to the servants must not become burden to the parish but they must spend for their parish everything and themselves as well.

(Corinthians 12:11-15)
I am become a fool in glorying; ye have compelled me: for I ought to have been commended of you: for in nothing am I behind the very chiefest apostles, though I be nothing.
Truly the signs of an apostle were wrought among you in all patience, in signs, and wonders, and mighty deeds.
For what is it wherein ye were inferior to other churches, except it be that I myself was not burdensome to you? Forgive me this wrong.
Behold, the third time I am ready to come to you; and I will not be burdensome to you: for I seek not your's but you: for the children ought not to lay up for the parents, but the parents for the children.
But be it so, I did not burden you: nevertheless, being crafty, I caught you with guile.

It is a harsh phrases and bold, Touch the reality grim of the churches (servants and the people).
 Where always they are moving away from substance;
 It does not need explanation;
 It is building the spirit of the church directly.

But !!!!
Who will read? And who will seek to build?
 We ask the Lord for provide the mercy into  His Church.

Editor: Rev.Spyridon Tanous
Orthodox Patristic Church- Sweden
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