Our life is a pilgrimage toward our heavenly fatherland. Fr.Alexander Schmemann

A good explanation of the Great Fast…or Lent.

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Forgiveness (Cheese-Fare Sunday)
by Alexander Schmemann

decani-adam  euaFinally comes the last day [of preparation for Lent], usually called “Forgiveness Sunday,” but whose other liturgical name must also be remembered: the “Expulsion of Adam from the Paradise of Bliss.” This name summarizes indeed the entire preparation for Lent. By now we know that man was created for paradise, for knowledge of God and communion with Him. Man’s sin has deprived him of that blessed life and his existence on earth is exile. Christ, the Savior of the world, opens the door of paradise to everyone who follows Him, and the Church, by revealing to us the beauty of the Kingdom, makes our life a pilgrimage toward our heavenly fatherland. Thus, at the beginning of Lent, we are like Adam:

Adam was expelled form paradise through food;
Sitting, therefore, in front of it he cried:
“Woe to me….
One commandment of…

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Δώσε όλη τη δύναμη σου στα λουλούδια της ψυχής σου…Άγιος Πορφύριος Καυσοκαλυβίτης

I really love the Ikon, don’t you? The post is written in Greek, btw.

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εισοδος εις τον παραδεισο εικονα

Όταν ο κήπος της ψυχής σου είναι γεμάτος αγκάθια (πάθη), μην προσπαθείς να τα ξεριζώσεις και βρίσκεσαι διαρκώς τραυματισμένος και μολυσμένος από την ασχολία σου μαζί τους. Δώσε όλη τη δύναμη σου στα λουλούδια της ψυχής σου, πότισέ τα, και τότε τ΄ αγκάθια θα ξεραθούν μόνα τους. Και το καλύτερο λουλούδι είναι η αγάπη σου στον Χριστό. Αν ποτίσεις αυτήν και αναπτυχθεί, όλα τα αγκάθια μαραίνονται.

Το ουσιαστικότερο είναι να φύγεις απ’ τον τύπο και να πηγαίνεις στην ουσία. Ό,τι γίνεται, να γίνεται από αγάπη.

 Ἡ ἀγάπη τοῦ Χριστοῦ ποὺ συνδυάζεται μὲ τὴν προσευχὴ καὶ μὲ τὴν ἁγιότητα τοῦ βίου κάνει ἅγιο τὸν ἄνθρωπο, τὸν εἰρηνεύει, διότι ἀγάπη εἶναι ὁ Θεός.

Μην αγωνιάς, ούτε να προσπαθείς να κόψεις ή να διορθώσεις το ελάττωμα τού άλλου. Αγάπησέ τον με το ελάττωμα του. Ο Κύριος θα φροντίσει γι’ αυτό.

Μην προσπαθείτε με ανθρώπινους τρόπους να διορθώσετε κακές καταστάσεις. Δεν έρχεται κανένα καλό…

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St. Nicholas Planas, Humble of Spirit

Nice write up of a humble man. Thanks.

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St. Nicholas Planas, Humble of Spirit

His feast day is on March 2

Νικόλαος ΠλανάςAgiosNikolaosPlanas04He was compassionate, and had no care for wordly things or estates. Night and day he was absorbed in divine worship, and with his small parish of St. Panteleimon in Neo Kosmo which was comprised of thirteen families. The people loved him. His simplicity, his island piety, his kindness, his chastity, his lack of love for money, drew everyone to divine worship. Everyone wanted him to bless their homes, their stores. And he ran everywhere joyously. From aristocratic homes down to the poorest homes, he never kept a drachma on him. The poor always waited outside the church for him to distribute whatever he had in his pocket.

However, a certain priest without a parish of his own, in cooperation with the council members of St. Panteleimon, kicked him out of his parish

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