The celebration of the Liturgy of Pascha in Hong Kong.
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The hymns compiled by the hymnographers of the Church for Christians to celebrate feasts, as well as today’s feast of the Dormition of our Panagia, are masterpieces, as much in the structure, images and cosmetic adjectives they use, as well as in their content, which respond to the great existential problems of man, such as about life and death.
The greatest plague of the 21st century is not AIDS, nor cancer, nor the H1N1 flu, but something that affects much more people in ways we can barely start to understand: depression. Reportedly one in ten Americans suffers from one or the other forms of this malady.
The recent wave of violence against innocent families and children in Iraq has rendered the world shocked and horrified. We will not remain indifferent or silent before such irrational persecution, cultural intolerance and appalling loss of life, especially when it is caused by religious hatred and racial hostility.
The holy and great Synod therefore says, that the only begotten Son, born according to nature of God the Father, very God of very God, Light of Light, by whom the Father made all things, came down, and was incarnate, and was made man, suffered, and rose again the third day, and ascended into heaven.
Metropolitan Nektarios of Hong Kong and Southeast Asia celebrated the festal Divine Liturgy in honour of the great Feast of the Dormition of the Most Holy Theotokos at the Orthodox Cathedral of Saint Luke in Hong Kong on Thursday evening, August 14th, 2014.
It is right here, in attempting to answer this question so fundamental to genuine faith, that the image of the Virgin Mother almost unconsciously and involuntarily begins to grow before our spiritual eyes. Oh, this doesn’t mean that her image somehow eclipses the image of Christ, or that she is presented to Christianity as an additional object of faith set apart from Christ.
As we Orthodox continue our sojourn through the Dormition Fast, we remember that giving honor to the Mother of Jesus Christ is an idea that comes from the Scriptures themselves. In Luke 1:39-44 we find this description of Jesus’ Mother visiting her cousin, Elizabeth, who is pregnant with John the Baptist:
In the symbolic language of the Church the Sun represents the Son of God, Jesus Christ, and the moon represents the Most Holy Theotokos.
China will construct a “Chinese Christian theology” suitable for the country, state media reported on Thursday, as both the number of believers and tensions with the authorities are on the rise. China has between 23 million and 40 million Protestants, accounting for 1.7 to 2.9 per cent of the total population, the state-run China Daily said, citing figures given at a seminar in Shanghai.