The Annunciation of our Most Holy Lady, the Theotokos and Ever-Virgin Mary

The Feast of the Annunciation is one of the earliest Christian feasts, and was already being celebrated in the fourth century.

There is a painting of the Annunciation in the catacomb of Priscilla in Rome dating from the second century. The Council of Toledo in 656 mentions the Feast, and the Council in Trullo in 692 says that the Annunciation was celebrated during Great Lent.

Venerable Alexis the Man of God

Saint Alexis was born at Rome into the family of the pious and poverty-loving Euphemianus and Aglais.

The couple was childless for a long time and constantly prayed the Lord to grant them a child. And the Lord consoled the couple with the birth of their son Alexis. At six years of age the child began to read and successfully studied the mundane sciences, but it was with particular diligence that he read Holy Scripture. When he was a young man, he began to imitate his parents: he fasted strictly, distributed alms and beneath his fine clothing he secretly wore a hair shirt. Early on there burned within him the desire to leave the world and serve God. His parents, however, had arranged for Alexis to marry a beautiful and virtuous bride.

A Brief History of the Irish Orthodox Church

A Brief History of the Irish Orthodox Church
A Brief History of the Irish Orthodox Church
A Brief History of the Irish Orthodox Church
A Brief History of the Irish Orthodox Church

On this (Julian Calender) St. Patrick’s day, historical for its first official ecclesiastical commemoration by churches of the Moscow Patriachate, with the poetic “ode to Celtic saints” by Monk Nicodemos. 

1. How Did Orthodoxy Reach Ireland?

How did Orthodox Christianity come to this small green island off the shores of the European continent in the uttermost West? Unknown to many, Christianity in Ireland does have an Apostolic foundation, through the Apostles James and John, although the Apostles themselves never actually visited there.

Orthodox retreat in Hamilton

Archpriest Andrei Tkachev: Climacus

“Oh, if only I could / At least to some degree, / Write eight lines I would / About passion’s properties. / About the / transgressions and the sins, / The running and the chasing, / The hasty inadvertences, / The elbows, my palms”1—thus wrote Pasternak, aware that a precise, accurate word on the passions is difficult to give, and there can be few such words.

Precise words on the passions slip out of your hands, like a wet and lively fish, and the passions themselves are interwoven together, knit together one with another, forming a repugnant unity. Obviously the word “passions” in the this case is used as a synonym for “disease of the soul,” and not as romantic longing or a noble fire in the blood.

Saint Proclus: Sermon on the Annunciation

Our present gathering in honor of the Most Holy Virgin inspires me, brethren, to offer her a word of praise, of benefit also for those who have come to this holy celebration.  It is a praise of women, a glorification of their gender, which (glory) she brings to it, she who is both Mother and Virgin at the same time.

O desired and wondrous gathering!  O nature, celebrate that whereby honor is rendered to woman!  Rejoice, O human race, that in which the Virgin is glorified.  “But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound” [Romans 5:20].  The Holy Mother of God and Virgin Mary has gathered us here.  She is the pure treasure of virginity, the intended paradise of the Second Adam, the place where the union of natures (divine and human) was accomplished, and the Counsel of salvific reconciliation was affirmed.

St. George Church-Carmichaels Subject of Conference Presentation

Dr. Ezekiel Olagoke, Associate Professor of Sociologyat Waynesburg University, Waynesburg, Pennsylvania has been conducting researchon the history of the St. George Serbian Orthodox Church in Carmichaels,Pennsylvania. Dr. Olagoke is a member of the St. George Serbian Orthodox Church. As part of his research, he has reviewed parish publications and hasspoken to the parish priest and parishioners. Dr. Olagoke will give a presentation based on his research at the  Christianity and Literature Conference at Grove City College on April 1, 2017. His topic is: “Hearts in Exile: Modes of Religiosity and Social Engagement Among the Serbian Orthodox Community in Carmichaels, Pa.”