In the year of our Lord 1900, when the Empress Dowager reigned over the vast country of China and supported the Boxer Rebellion against all foreigners, two-hundred twenty Orthodox Christians in Peking died as martyrs, although a few others lost courage and renounced the truth of the Gospel. Leader of the martyrs was the Priest Metrophanes Tsi-Chung.
Solomon the Wise assures us: “The horse is prepared for battle, but victory belongs to the LORD.” (Proverbs 21:31). The virtue of the horse is a great example for the spiritual life of every Christian faithful. With Christianity being challenged around the world, Christians must be “brave” in living out their faith.
The sea represents the whole creation and the holy cross represents Jesus Christ. The Church with the service of the blessing of the waters and the tossing of the holy cross into the sea conveys the sanctification to the whole creation. In Hong Kong the Service will be conducted this year on Sunday, January 5th at 13.00p.m. at Blake Pier in Stanley.
On Sunday, July 20, 2014, two doctors, 2 nurses and staff and 3 student volunteers participated at a Medical Philanthropic Project which was organized by the Orthodox Communities in Southern Mindanao, Philippines.
On Sunday, March 17,2013, fr.Panharios Borreros visited the Orthodox Community in Lake Cebu, Chrismated catechumens and celebrated the Divine Liturgy.
The Orthodox Community of Sts Peter and Paul in Pasay City, Philippines, celebrated in a solemn way the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord.
Many saints, before the final decision to embrace the Christian faith, had shown toughness, misanthropy and sin. So find application the Biblical words: “where sin increased, grace increased all the more” (Rom. 5,20). Where the size of sin seemed scary, the grace of God appeared much greater than previously.
In accordance with the tradition of our Holy Church, we approach our saints every day, honoring their memories, bearing their names and asking for their intercessions and mediations before the throne of God. They are saved, we are sinners; they are in the Light, we are in darkness. Full of illnesses we ask the saints to heal our bodies, though more rarely to heal our souls. And the saints, compassionate as they are, being imitators of the merciful God, graciously give us what we need, assisting us, strengthening us and healing us. But we especially recommend three medicines.
The birth of Christ restored the equality of the sexes. At the beginning of human history, a woman, Eve, was born, without female intervention, from a man, Adam, so in this rebalancing of history, a man, Christ, was born of a woman, Our Most Holy Lady, this time without male involvement. Christ brings the good tidings of the harmonious relationship between us and God and, by extension, with Himself, other people and nature. Love is restored to its place as the mystical axis of life.
The Ecumenical Patriarchate has witnessed with great pain and distress the recent manifestations of religious violence against women in Northern Africa, which have profoundly and justifiably concerned the global community. It expresses its outright and unequivocal condemnation of the kidnapping in Nigeria of scores of young women, who are forcibly subjected to espouse Islam.
His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew and His Holiness Pope Francis celebrated a fifty-year milestone today, continuing the legacy of their predecessors Pope Paul VI and Ecumenical Patriarch Athenagoras. Meeting at the Apostolic Delegation in the Old City of Jerusalem, the worldwide heads of the Roman Catholic and the Orthodox Churches signed a Joint Declaration affirming their commitment to and anticipation of full sacramental unity in obedience to the commandment of Jesus Christ that his “disciples may be one.”
His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew and His Holiness Pope Francis crossed a fifty-year milestone today, continuing the legacy of their predecessors Pope Paul VI and Ecumenical Patriarch Athenagoras. In 1964, those leaders broke a silence of centuries and paved the way toward greater dialogue.
Metropolitan Nicholas of Mesogaias: On Ecumenism and the Recent Meeting Between the Ecumenical Patriarch and the Pope
On June 1 (Sunday of the Holy Fathers), 2014, His Eminence, Metropolitan Nicholas of Mesogaia and Lavreotiki issued the following beneficial, challenging and balanced encyclical to mark the meeting between Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew and Pope Francis in Jerusalem on the 50th anniversary of the mutual lifting of the anathemas.
The emotional state of the Lord’s disciples was grim after His Crucifixion, because by the Lord’s death on the Cross the hopes of His disciples were dispersed that He and they would one day prevail as political power. They had perceived the triumphant entrance of Jesus Christ into Jerusalem, following the resurrection of Lazarus and the miraculous feeding of five thousand men, with additional women and children, by five loaves of bread and two fish, as a prelude of their conquering of secular authority. The mother of two of them moreover requested that her two sons sit by each side of the Lord, when He came to power. All these, however, dissipated as childish imaginations on account of the awful execution of Jesus Christ.
A major storm that is forecast to become a severe typhoon is churning its way across the Pacific on a path that could see it strike Taiwan as soon as Wednesday.
Large-scale poverty is now endemic in Hong Kong as the gap between rich and poor widens, with old people the hardest hit, according to one of the city’s oldest and most respected NGOs.
The Hong Kong Council of Social Service, which has been tracking poverty in the city [...]
Hong Kong goes into three days of mourning today (October 4) for the 38 people killed in the ferry disaster.
Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying and other principal officials will observe three minutes of silence outside government headquarters in Admiralty at noon.
Government services except immigration and emergency services will [...]
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The word Apodeipnon signifies “after supper” in the Greek , and denotes the monastic office of night prayer corresponding in some senses to western Compline, although in the Orthodox daily offices there is also a later service of the late night called Mesonyktikon (lit. “the middle of the night”).
Peter was the son of Jonah and the brother of Andrew, the First-called. He was of the Tribe of Simeon from the town of Bethsaida. He was a fisherman and, at first, was called Simon but the Lord was pleased to call him Cephas or Peter: “And he brought him to Jesus. And when Jesus beheld him, He said, You are Simon the son of Jonah: you shall be called Cephas, which is by interpretation, a rock” (St. John 1:42).
CHRIST HAS CONQUERED THE WORLD. This victory is further unveiled and fulfilled in the fact that He built His Church. In Christ and through Christ the unity of mankind was brought about truly for the first time, for those who believed in His Name become the Body of Christ. And through uniting with Christ they unite likewise with each other in a most sincere concord of love. In this great unity all empirical distinctions and barriers are done away with: differences of birth in the flesh are effaced within the unity of a spiritual birth.
At the end of the excerpt of Saint John Chrysostom’s homily on the Sunday of the Paralytic, we read: ‘Even now I can show you many who naturally hate having anything to do with women, and avoid conversation with them as impure. Shall we call them chaste; tell me, shall we crown them and proclaim them victors?’
The Feast of the Ascension of Our Lord and God, Jesus Christ, is a joyful festal stage in the truly jubilant Resurrection time of our Church. With feelings of rejoicing, we Orthodox faithful pack the churches on this holy day, to send hymns of thanksgiving to our Saviour and Redeemer Lord and to praise His holy ascent to the heavens, after He had consented to descend in order to perform his redemptive work for the human race. (Jn. 3, 13; Phil. 2, 6-11). We hymn His return to the divine throne of His ineffable majesty, at the right hand of God the Father, to Whom He is forever our great and eternal Intercessor (I Tim. 2, 5).
On Great Tuesday, in the evening, the troparion of Kassiani is sung in Orthodox Churches. This is a poetic rendition of the event described in the Gospels where a sinful woman shows her repentance by laving Christ’s feet with precious ointment and wiping them with her hair.
Question: In the Gospel, who is the man in the city bearing a pitcher of water? Why water, and why are the disciples told that they’ll meet him and are to follow him? Who’s the master of the house? Why don’t the Gospel writers mention his name? What is the large upper room where a table’s been laid and in which the dread mystery of the Last Supper takes place?
Joseph was the eleventh son of the Patriarch Jacob, born to him of Rachel. Envied by his brothers on account of certain dreams that he had, he was first cast into a pit. Jacob was deceived by his other sons into believing, on the basis of a bloodstained robe, that Joseph had been devoured by a wild beast. Joseph was then sold to some Ishmaelite travellers for thirty pieces of silver. The Ishmaelites in turn sold him to Potiphar, the chief eunuch of Pharaoh, the King of Egypt.
Lazarus was a Hebrew by birth and a Pharisee by profession, and, as has been ascertained, was a son of Simon the Pharisee, from the village of Bethany. When our Lord Jesus Christ was sojourning in the land for the salvation of our race, Simon was united to Him in friendship. Since Christ was constantly conversing with Simon, in view of the latter’s professed belief in the resurrection of the dead, and frequently visited his house, Lazarus became His close friend, and not only Lazarus himself, but also his two sisters, Martha and Mary.
There is no need for someone to be an academic in order to undertake this interpretation. The interpretive method of the Fathers does not come only from books that they read, but also from their experience. So when they speak about dogmas, they not only interpret texts but also speak from their experience. In the same way as an astronomer, who when he teaches, does not speak only from astronomical books, but also through the telescope and corroborates with the telescope what is written in the books. In fact the telescope is more important than the books.
On the Fifth Sunday of Lent, the Church honours the memory of a “street-walker”, a woman who led such a dissolute life that the word “prostitute” is more of a euphemism rather than an exact description of the depth of her sinfulness. The figure of Blessed Mary is highlighted on the last Sunday of Great Lent: on the one hand, to strike at our Churchy prissiness, since a common harlot is presented as a model of life; and, on the other, to provide an example and a ray of hope for repentance for all those who are slaves to their passions and continue to struggle to find ways to free themselves of them.
A reference point in the typiko of Great Lent is the communion of the Presanctified Precious Gifts. The discordance between the festal and joyful nature of the celebration of the Divine Eucharist and the compunction of Great Lent makes it inappropriate to celebrate the bloodless sacrifice on fast days. And yet, the importance of Holy Communion for the spiritual struggle of the faithful has established participation in the Presanctified Gifts even on such days.
We shall continue with our lessons on the theology of icons, with the depiction of the Annunciation of the Theotokos. The event of the Annunciation is described in Luke’s Gospel, in which the Evangelist describes numerous events that are linked to the Theotokos, and especially to the birth of Christ. The birth of Christ is also described by Matthew the Evangelist, but the details that pertain to these events are described by Luke, who had met the Theotokos in person and had learnt of those events – for example of the Annunciation – directly from the Holy Mother.
Now, you shouldn’t let the terminology confuse you. “Energy” is whatever we can see expressed: emotions and feelings are energies of the essence, which we cannot approach. “Energy” is all those things that express our behavior. Essence and energy.
“I love you because you are you.” Have you ever thought about the message this sentence conveys? I love you, and I am able to love you because you aren’t me. This is the first interpretation. Essentially I do not love you, if I want you to be like me. Through the diversity of each person, with love, there is achieved a constant enrichment of a relationship. Otherwise, as they say in the world and society: “Relationships and marriage get old.”
In the middle of Holy and Great Lent, the Church places before the faithful the Honourable Cross of the Lord for us to venerate and draw strength from, so that we can continue the gruelling but lambent journey towards Great Week.
«And God saw all the things he had created and behold they were very good. And there was an evening and there was a morning. The sixth day … And God blessed the seventh day and hallowed it; Because on it he rested from all these works which He made» (Gen. 1:31, 2:3). In this way man is called by God that he too may sanctify the seventh day and participate in rejoicing for the goodness of creation.
Through the grace of God, the Primates of the Most Holy Autocephalous Orthodox Churches, to the Orthodox faithful throughout the world, all of our Christian brothers and sisters as well as every person of goodwill: we extend God’s blessing and our greeting of love and peace.
Address by His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew at the Synaxis of First-Hierarchs of the Orthodox Churches
We offer glory and praise to our God who is worshipped in the Trinity for rendering us worthy to convene once again in the same place for another Synaxis, as those entrusted by His grace and mercy with the responsibility of leadership for the local autocephalous Orthodox Churches. This is the sixth such consecutive Synaxis since this blessed custom commenced in 1992, shortly after our elevation to the Throne of Constantinople. Like the Psalmist, we too proclaim: “Behold what a good and wonderful thing it is for brothers to dwell in the same place.” Our heart is filled with joy and delight in receiving you and embracing each one of you with sincere love, profound honor and favorable anticipation of our encounter.
At the invitation of His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, the First-Hierarchs of all the Orthodox Autocephalous Churches will gather from March 6-9, 2014, for a Sacred Synaxis at the Phanar in order to deliberate on matters pertaining to the entire Orthodox Church throughout the world and procedural issues for the convocation of the Holy and Great Council, whose preparation is coming to an end.