Questions for Self-Examination

  • How often are we consciously mindful of the Holy Spirit?
  • Are we attentive to the Holy Spirit beyond the period celebrating Pentecost?
  • Do we think consciously of the fruit of the Spirit?( Galatians 5:22-23)
  • Do we live in ways to experience the fruit of the Spirit?
  • Are our prayers focused with intent to experience God?

The Essence of Christianity

Bishop Alexander (Mileant)

"Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father Which is in heaven is perfect" (Matt. (continue from last Sunday.)

Certainly, no one wishes to be condemned to hell. Everyone wants to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. It is crucial to understand, however, that the Kingdom of Heaven is not so much a place as a state. When the scribes asked when the Kingdom of Heaven would be revealed, Christ answered: "The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: neither shall they say, Lo here!, or Lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you" (Luke 17:20). Saying so, the Lord showed that salvation is intimately connected with a man’s interior state. Salvation is not simply a move from the present conditions of life to different and better conditions; it is something more profound and wonderful. As Scripture says, "If favour is shown to the wicked, he does not learn righteousness; in the land of uprightness he deals perversely and does not see the majesty of the Lord" (Isa. 26: 10, RSV). In other words, even when his exterior conditions improve, the wicked man continues to be envious, hateful, and quarrelsome, for he is tormented by a thirst for sensual pleasures; thus, he bears hell in himself. True joy, peace, and blessedness are inner states that come to a man as a result of a relationship with God, which the unrepentant refuse and do not share in. The righteous man, no matter where he is, will always have the delight of communion with God, bearing paradise within himself.

Did Enoch and Elijah (Elias) Ascend into Heaven?

In His night conversation with Nicodemus, the Savior says, And no man hath ascended up to Heaven, but He that came down from Heaven, even the Son of man Which is in Heaven (Jn. 3:13). Many opponents of Christ see in this phrase a contradiction in the words of Scripture, for the Old Testament relates how Elijah ascended into Heaven and how God took Enoch to Himself. Let’s try to sort this issue out, using the Tradition of the fathers of the Church as the key to Scripture.

Interview and homily on Glorification of St. Mardarije

On July 14-16, 2017, The Serbian Orthodox Church celebrated the glorification of newly canonized St. Madarije of Libertyville. Learn about his life in an interview with Serbian Bishop Irenej of the Eastern American Diocese.

Then listen to the homily given at the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy by Metropolitan Amfilohije of Montenegro (Church of Serbia) where you will learn more about the life and dedication of this saint.

His Grace Bishop Irenej and John Maddex discuss the life and history of newly canonized St. Mardarije of Libertyville.

A Christian Understanding Of Homosexuality, Part 1

In light of the confusion stirred in some readers of recent texts on Social Media and other online portals, regarding the Church’s clear teaching on homosexuality and the pastoral need to care for those suffering in particular from the social trend to regard it as “natural” or a thing to be accepted as part of human nature, the following text is provided for contrast. Presented as a “reference text” at a clergy meeting of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia in the USA last year, it offers a clear response to many of the social arguments used in the attempt to diminish the Church’s pastoral teachings, which always aim for the loving care and conversion of all who fall into any sin.

Accredited seminar for catechists of the Diocese of Zicha

Accredited seminar for catechists of the Diocese of Zicha
Accredited seminar for catechists of the Diocese of Zicha
Accredited seminar for catechists of the Diocese of Zicha
Accredited seminar for catechists of the Diocese of Zicha

With the blessing of Bishop Justin of Zicha, an accredited expert seminar entitled "Integrative Approach in Religious Education" was held for catechists (religious teachers) in the Diocese of Zicha, in the Monastery of Studenica on June 17, 2017.

Authors and program implementers were Dr. Vladan Tatalovic (Chair for the New Testament - Orthodox Theological Faculty in Belgrade), Dr. Srboljub Ubiparipovic (Chair of Liturgical Theology - Orthodox Theology Faculty in Belgrade) and Snezana Pavlovic, graduate andragogue, advisor in pre-school and primary education and counselor for religious education at state schools in the Ministry of Education of Serbia. The aim of the seminar was to strengthen capacities and professional competencies of catechists.

The fast of the apostles

In one of his sermons, St. Basil the Great says, “Do not limit fasting to abstaining from food only, for real fasting lies in abstaining from evil acts, and to untie the bonds of injustice (Isaiah 58 :6 ).

During the fasting you do not eat meat, but unfortunately, you do eat the flesh of your brother. You do not drink wine, but you can’t control your tongue in order not to curse anyone. Despite the fact you spend the whole day without eating anything; yet, you spend your day judging others.