How to Interpret Holy Scriptures as an Orthodox Theologian

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.

The Memory of Saint Mary of Egypt

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.

The History and Rite of the Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts

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.