Russian Orthodox Church
of St Nicholas
Dallas, Texas
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Redeeming the Time Vol 01.05 22nd Sunday after Pentecost Nov 3/16 1997


Redeeming the Time

St. Nicholas Orthodox Church Dallas TX

See then that ye walk circumspectly,

not as fools, but as wise,

redeeming the time,

because the days are evil.

22nd Sunday after Pentecost

Nov 3/16 1997

Vol. 01.05

Eternal Memory *

Pray for the Repose of the Guardian of the Myrrh-Streaming Icon, Br. Jose *

Calendar *

Bishop Gabriel to visit Houston Dec 13-14 *

Synaxis of Archangel Michael and all the Bodiless Powers - Friday, Nov 8/21 *

News and Announcements *

Fall Mission Conference *

Axios! *

Reception of brethren *

Myrrh streaming icon of St Nicholas *

Summary of talks - by Reader Constantine *

Clergy Conference in Atlanta *

Welcome to St. Elias Russian Orthodox Church *

Sick *

Scripture *

23rd Monday after Pentecost *

Luke 10:22-24 *

23rd Tuesday after Pentecost *

Luke 11:1-10 *

23rd Wednesday after Pentecost *

Luke 11:9-13 *

Eternal Memory

Pray for the Repose of the Guardian of the Myrrh-Streaming Icon, Br. Jose

Brother Jose Munoz, the guardian of the Myrrh-Streaming Iveron Icon of the Mother of God, was buried on Wednesday, Oct 30/Nov 1, in Jordanville. Brother Jose toiled tirelessly for the good of the church for about fifteen years, taking the Holy icon he was entrusted with to anyone who asked. His burden was difficult for his gentle soul, which preferred quiet, and time for prayer and the painting of icons.

Brother Jose confided in a friend, only a few weeks before his death something that was perhaps prophetic. "All of us who personally knew Jose were warmed by his person and his gentle nature. No one can convince us of anything else. As a matter of fact, I can share with you that several weeks before he died, he had occasion to quietly tell me how difficult life had become for him, how painful was his cross, that he pleaded with the Mother of God to somehow release him from his pain and sorrow. Do you not believe that She did? She gave him a martyr's crown. Do you not believe She Herself was there to welcome Him into the Kingdom of Her Son? As for the jeers and taunts of the mob, well, they inevitably accompany the Cross -- or did you not know that? As a matter of fact, the more elevated the Cross, the more intense is the jeering and the taunting of the rabble. Let them be. If you loved and cared for Jose, be like Her when she stood at the foot of the Cross of Her Son, be like the other Marys and women who stood there with her. In quiet and powerful dignity. Despite the rabble." (From a post of Masha Sarandinaki to an Orthodox email list, Nov 14 1997)

Whether Jose's murder was a martyrdom, only God knows. Those who knew him know however, that his life was a martyrdom, and will quietly pray for his soul, with confidence that he will surely be placed among the blessed.

+ Give rest O Lord to the soul of Thy +

+ servant Joseph who has fallen asleep +

Calendar

Bishop Gabriel to visit Houston Dec 13-14

Bishop Gabriel will be in Houston the second week of December, (Dec 13-14 civil dates). Before the Hierarchal Divine Liturgy on Sunday, Paul Sanchez will be tonsured a reader. Everyone is strongly urged to make plans to go to Houston to meet our bishop, and exclaim "Axios" for Paul. If there are enough who are willing to make the trip, we will rent a large van, so the driving will be taken care of.

Synaxis of Archangel Michael and all the Bodiless Powers - Friday, Nov 8/21

This is the feastday of our 3 "Michaels". We will serve Great Vespers the (Thursday) evening before, at 7:00 PM, and Fr Seraphim is considering strongly serving a vigil for these messengers of God. The ministry of the angels is critical to the life in the church, and often not understood very well. After vespers, Fr Seraphim will talk about the Holy Angels and in particular, the Archangels Michael and Gabriel. Please make every effort to come, at least by 7:45 PM, to learn about the holy angels.

News and Announcements

Fall Mission Conference

Fr Seraphim, Michael Daum, Andrew Temple and Jason Waghorne were at the Fall Missions Conference in Atlanta, Nov 8-10 (civil calendar). Many wonderful things occurred at this conference. It was well planned, and we were always very close to being on time, so in this way, one can say that is was an "untraditional" conference!

Axios!

Andrew was tonsured to the sacred office of Reader on Sunday, by Bishop Gabriel. Next up is Paul, who will be tonsured Reader in Houston, when Vladyka Gabriel is there the SECOND weekend of December (Dec 13-14). Fr Seraphim has been told by Vladyka himself of these travel plans, so they are as certain as any can be in our busy church.

The Mission of St. John the Wonderworker (Mobile, Alabama) now has a priest. Deacon Alexander, who has labored for several years in this mission, was elevated to the holy Priesthood on Sunday. May God preserve him and increase his priestly ministry.

Reception of brethren

The entire weekend was immeasurably enhanced by the reception of Abbot Damian and the Monastery of the Glorious Ascension (Resaca GA, about 90 minutes from Atlanta), and Fr John Townsend and the parish of St Mary of Egypt (In Southern Atlanta), and Deacon Cyprian, who hails from North Carolina. All sought refuge in the Russian Orthodox Church outside Russia from the ecumenist policies of the OCA.

Abbot Damian has been a vocal proponent of the baptism of converts, as has Father John. Recently, Archbishop Dimitri suspended both priests because they refused to follow his order that they would stop promulgating this Orthodox teaching, and would ALWAYS chrismate only any convert who had a "baptism" on the "Trinitarian" form from another confession that is deemed to be "acceptable". It is possible that in certain situations, the proper pastoral action is to chrismate converts, but these situations are very rare, and our synod of bishops has mandated its priests to follow the Orthodox practice, while allowing them pastoral discretion in certain RARE situations, with a blessing.

Many Orthodox churches have mandated this exceptional practice, and given it the force of law, even going to the extent to suspend pastors whose Orthodox conscience does not allow them to deny those thirsty for the waters of baptism a "cup of water". Abbot Damian and Father John were being made an example of because they have been vocal proponents of the Orthodox practices in the reception of converts. If one looks carefully at the reasons for such "Chrismation only" edicts, which are enforced with a fist, ecumenism is the root cause. Frs. Damian and John have stood against this tide that is obliterating the Orthodox understanding of where the church is and where it is not, and is giving people stones instead of bread, and for this they were persecuted.

After their suspension, and the threat that they would actually be deposed if they did not submit to Archbishop Dimitri's ill-conceived edicts, the Fathers turned to the Russian Church Abroad. It is absolutely Orthodox to leave one's bishop when he is teaching heresies. In this case, Archbishop Dimitri's edicts do not absolutely preach heresy, but they are absolutely part of the groundswell in some Orthodox churches that is obliterating the Orthodox understanding of baptism, the state of the heterodox, and where the church is, and where it is not. It is unprecedented that a pastor would be TOLD to deny someone coming to the church the waters of baptism, even when they have in some cases begged for them.

Our bishops considered very carefully the Father's request, and decided to accept them under their omophorians. This was accomplished by the most important expression of unity that the church performs. Frs. John and Damian, and Deacon Father Cyprian served in the hierarchal divine Liturgy on Sunday, presided at by Bishop Gabriel. All of the clergy who served, which was at least twenty priests, and six deacons, greeted each other, according to their rank, with "Christ is in our midst", "He is and ever shall be", and gave each other the kiss of peace. The priests all kissed each other's right hands, indicating their union in all important things.

This story is not yet over. There are many other good men who have seen the courageous example of Frs. Damian and John and Cyprian, and will be encouraged by it. Fr John's parish has a wonderful temple, and extensive grounds, and there is sure to be action against them by the OCA authorities in Syosett. We who are in the Russian Church abroad who have accepted them as brothers now must pray for them as brothers, as they will no doubt encounter heavy pressure, recriminations and even slanders.

These slanders have already begun. There is only one way to fight such slanders. We cannot stop them, and there are many who do not want to hear the true story, which does not fit their agenda. We must live the life in the church. If we do not have the firm foundation of prayer and fasting, attendance at all the sacred services, frequent confession and communion, and daily prayer in our homes, we will be swept away by the tide. Our human nature does not like to be set apart, alone, as an object of derision. The old adage, "Sticks and stones may break my bones but names will never hurt me", is only true if we ourselves are secure in what we believe and live the life in the church.

If any Christian is troubled by evil things said about our church, he should do two things. First, he must examine himself and see what is lacking in his own spiritual life. If he is lax in prayer or fasting, or attending church, he has much work to do in order to dispel his doubts or pain. He should also always ask his spiritual father about these things, so he can understand the context of them, and hear a reassuring voice.

Myrrh streaming icon of St Nicholas

Fr Elias Warnke, pastor of St. Herman of Alaska Orthodox Mission, Grand Rapids MI, spoke at the conference, and brought the myrrh streaming icon of St Nicholas the Wonderworker to bless our gathering. He gave all priests a small vial of the myrrh, which is a great blessing for our church.

Summary of talks - by Reader Constantine

This past weekend the 1997 Southern Orthodox Missions Conference of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia was a great blessing for all the Faithful in the South, and not only the South but all of America as well: participants came from as far away as upper New York state and New England.

The conference began Friday evening with a beautiful and moving Akathist service. That service, and indeed all the services and lectures throughout the weekend, was especially blessed by the presence of the myrrh-streaming icon of St. Nicholas the Wonderworker. In these dark times, when the Holy Orthodox Church is beset by error and heresy from within, and the attacks of civil governments from without, the Russian Church Abroad is particularly blessed to have a number of miraculous icons, serving as lighthouses by which Christ continually calls all the Faithful further up and further in, into Traditional Orthodoxy. Such was the heartfelt response of the Faithful to the presence of God's holy Saint that at the Vigil on Saturday, when the veneration of the icon began at the Canon, the line of pilgrims did not end until well after the Great Doxology, almost to the beginning of the First Hour.

The conference lectures were very well attended; the topics were very pertinent to planting and nurturing missions, to living of an Orthodox lifestyle completely different from the world. Fr. Elias Warnke spoke first, relating his spiritual journey into the bosom of the Russian Church Abroad. Among other points, he stressed something repeated oft later by all the speakers: in mission work we must never fall to playing the "numbers game". Our task is to hold fast to the pure and unadulterated Tradition, to maintain the Ark of Salvation the Holy Church which God has entrusted to us rather than compromise that Faith for the sake of a large membership or worldly recognition. "Make parishes pleasing to God. God will send the people" was one of Fr. Elias' most memorable comments.

Fr. Deacon Leonid Mickle spoke next, on the dangers of the New Age movement. The overt dangers of spiritualism and the occult are obvious, and Father Deacon spoke on them. But perhaps more importantly, he spoke on the far more subtle ways the New Age uses to draw unsuspecting people into it. For example there is the plethora of "health food" stores springing up all across this land. Not that there is anything wrong in and of itself in eating right... although the Holy Church, in her fasting discipline (where it is obeyed and not discarded), has given us the best way of eating right. These stores, however, link eating right to "global health", the "health of Gaia, of Mother Earth.", and - as one fruit soda product puts it - "mind, body, planet." The emphasis, unfortunately, is completely on the "self" rather than on the discipline of living and abiding in the Church which leads to true spiritual health. And, of course, there are the posters and literature distributed at such places, advertising everything from drum-circles to yoga to Transcendental Meditation.

Fr. Seraphim Stevens, pastor of St. Ignatius of Antioch Mission in Virginia Beach VA, spoke on methods of mission planting and nurturing. One of his first emphases was on the fact that missions can start from very humble beginnings: one can begin with a zealous and committed mission priest and his Matushka in their living room. However, when holding the Divine Services in homes, it is *imperative* to remember that it is, in fact, CHURCH. It is a place and a time set aside and consecrated to God in a special way which ceases to be a part of "home". Father Seraphim related a story from early in their journey where family members, not yet used to this distinction, came downstairs to services in night-clothes. This can be difficult for both, especially (as was Fr. Seraphim's case) when the home is a three floor apartment and the Temple on the second floor divides the home. Father also stressed that it is the Divine Services, the presence of God moving in the services, which draw people to the Orthodox Church, not necessarily or primarily "buttonholing evangelism" and door-to-door preaching such as we see from many Protestant bodies. This is the reason why it is so very important that we who have been given the riches of the Divine Services not give in to the prevailing modernist practice of liturgical renovationism and reductionism. Proper and reverent services are essential for missionary work.

What could be considered the keynote lecture was delivered by Father Alexey Young, on the dangers of Ecumenism to the average layman. There was so much on this that a paragraph can not possibly do justice to the wealth of material and food for thought presented. A poignant example, however, which Father gave suffices: Father spoke of serious and sober Anglican clergy in Great Britain who, seeing the moral and spiritual degeneration of their religious body, with women priestesses and acceptance of homosexuals, are *prevented* from coming to the Orthodox Church, the Ark of Salvation, because the modernist Orthodox jurisdictions in the UK have, in the spirit of Balamand and worldly "love" and "politeness", signed a pact declaring that they will not seek converts, and as a result report all inquiries made by Anglican clergy to the Church of England, which then persecutes its "dissenters."

Archimandrite Luke of Holy Trinity Monastery gave the final lecture of the conference. Father took as his starting point the words of St. John the Theologian, "Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see if they are of God." He spoke on the need for discernment we must have and develop and practice when reading and looking at what is happening in the life of the Church today, the problems and errors which are threatening Christ's Body throughout the world. We must look beyond the surface of what we see and read, praying and digging for the real meaning of events so that we will know how to react and maintain and live the purity of our Orthodox Faith in a traditional Church.

All the lectures were recorded, and will be available on audiocassette soon. Further details will be forthcoming.

The Hierarchical Divine Liturgy culminated the conference. Concelebrated by Vladyka and twenty-three priests, with over 130 laity receiving Holy Communion, it truly presented an icon of unity in one Traditional Orthodox Faith. As one priest remarked, it is truly a joy to have the kiss of peace with fellow clergy whom you *know* are in essential agreement and oneness of mind in dogma and Tradition and obedience to the Church, to commemorate bishops whom you *know* uphold without question the pure and uncompromised Faith of the Church, whom you know you can trust and respect without question. For some, this is an experience very contrasting with what they have known before. A palpable feeling of joy and solemnity filled the Temple, one common belief and zeal for the Holy Church shared by all present.

The Liturgy was also blessed in a number of other ways. First of all, by the ordination to the Holy Priesthood of Fr. Alexander Logunov, who serves a dynamic and growing mission dedicated to St. John of Shanghai and San Francisco in Mobile, AL. Secondly, the Liturgy saw the re-uniting to unity in the bosom of the Russian Church Abroad of Archimandrite Damian and the Brotherhood of the Monastery of the Glorious Ascension in Resaca GA, Archpriest John Townsend and the parishioners of St. Mary of Egypt Church in Norcross GA, and Fr. Deacon Cyprian Durant and his family from Columbia SC.

The conference was truly a wonderful spiritual experience, one that will be built on as the traditional church life of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia continues to thrive and grow. The 1998 Southern Missions Conference is planned for Miami, FL, to be hosted by the parish of St. Vladimir's, which this year celebrates its 50th anniversary. As well, plans were discussed - now that the size of the Synod in the South has grown so significantly - of holding multiple, regional mini-conferences throughout the year. It is a sign of this positive growth of ROCOR that, in his closing remarks, Vladyka Gabriel seriously foretold the possible creation of a vicar bishop or even a new diocese in Atlanta and the South.

May God grant Many Years to the parishes and missions, their clergy and laity, of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad in the South, and prosper the growth of Traditional Orthodoxy!

In the Love of Christ and His Church,

Reader Constantine, Our Lady, Joy of all Who Sorrow Orthodox Church, Alpharetta, GA (the host parish)

Clergy Conference in Atlanta

Following the missions conference was a daylong clergy conference (1/2 on Sunday. 1/2 on Monday), with Bishop Gabriel presiding. The clergy discussed many topics, including the need for an all church sobor (with clergy and laity) before the end of the century, liturgical and catechetical support of missions, and many other things.

Welcome to St. Elias Russian Orthodox Church

St Elias was formerly in the Antiochian Archdiocese, and petitioned our Western diocese. They are in Placerville California. More details are not known at this time, but Fr Seraphim has been contacted by one of the parishioners, and will have more information soon.

We must be very sober concerning the increase of brethren who are seeking the protection of the Russian Church Abroad. Our Bishop Gabriel has repeatedly warned us to not form any kind of "superior" feeling. The sad truth is that modernism in some of the other local Orthodox churches has reached such a startling amount that good hearted people are being forced away from their friends and family.

We in the Russian Church Abroad are not doing anything different; it is the other local churches which have severely compromised the faith in significant ways. We are sinners trying to live the Orthodox life, in obedience to the church, and we have the great benefit of monastic bishops who are upholding the faith without giving in to an ecumenist, political agenda. The news of churches seeking protection under our bishops' omophorians, should drive us to more prayer, and make us examine our own commitment to the Christian life. Many of these people are giving up many things to join us. If we cannot give up our Saturday evenings, or a bit of dainty food on a fast day, or parts of our morning and evenings to pray, or take time out of our Saturday afternoons or Sunday mornings to confess our sins in order to partake of the holy mysteries, we are not worthy of the benefits they are sacrificing so much to obtain.

Sick

Please pray for Hieromonk Averky, who is very ill with an ailment of the spine, and Tim Clader, who is recovering from a serious fall, which shattered one of his ankles.

Scripture

The daily scripture readings for the 23rd week after Pentecost, 1997 (the coming week AFTER the publication date of this journal) are from 1 Thessalonians and Luke. Almost all scripture readings are on the St. Nicholas Calendar. All Orthodox Christians must have a scripture reading discipline, if they are serious about saving their souls. As your pastor, I beg of you that you at least read the daily readings. Some of those readings have a short commentary, below.

23rd Monday after Pentecost

Luke 10:22-24

All things are delivered to me of my Father: and no man knoweth who the Son is, but the Father; and who the Father is, but the Son, and he to whom the Son will reveal him. (Luke 10:22)

The great majority of heresies have been about Jesus Christ. The reason for this is clear if the meaning of the passage above is understood. Fortunately, we have the Holy Fathers to elucidate the difficulties in Divine writ.

All is delivered unto the Son, that is, the Son rules over all things. God rules over all in two ways. As the One Who Is, and Who has created all things, all things are in subjection to Divine economy. "All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made." (John 1:3) However, He does not utilize His prerogatives to force servility. Those who love Him obey Him and subject themselves willingly to His holy will. He rules over such by revealing Himself to them intimately, as they are able to bear the fiery knowledge of Divinity, and are purified.

A Christian understands that we are weak creatures and will either willingly become slaves of our benevolent Creator, who wills to call us friends, or we will be tyrannized by the Evil One, and serve sin, no matter how much we wish this not to be so. The good news of the incarnation is that we have been made able to be "laborers and doers of the commandments" (Bl. Theophylact) Our nature was formerly turned against God, but Christ's taking on of our flesh made it able to turn to God.

The child of God is very conscious that he makes a choice moment by moment regarding whom he chooses to serve. He also knows that any true knowledge of God is inextricably bound up with becoming like God in moral virtues. This short passage, which has such exalted theology, is also a challenge and a promise. We have the Son of God to emulate, and the end of our race contains a worthy prize indeed. The object of our love and obedience, expressed by our tears and labors and vigils and fasting, and all holy things, will reveal to us the energies of the divinity.

23rd Tuesday after Pentecost

Luke 11:1-10

How to pray

Persistence in prayer

I say unto you, Though he will not rise and give him, because he is his friend, yet because of his importunity he will rise and give him as many as he needeth. {9} And I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. {10} For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened. (Luke 11:8-10)

Here we are told how to ask for things, and what things are truly important in the spiritual life. The inference is strong, and is confirmed by the life in the church, that we will be kept waiting for some of the things we desire.

A Christian must continually test himself against these instructions. The final object of our prayer, of which we must continually be aware, is the Holy Spirit, for Our Lord tells us: " How much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?" (Luke 11:13, partial) Before this, He tells of a son, who asks for bread, a fish, and an egg. All these foods are good things, necessary for the body, but the fathers understand them in a spiritual way.

The bread represents the faith in the Trinity, and the knowledge of the God-revealed Orthodox dogmas, which are the "bread which strengtheneth man's heart" (Ps. 103:17) The knowledge of God changes a man, and amends him, making him fit for the Kingdom of God. From the Holy Trinity flows all good things. It is fitting that the Christian would beg for more knowledge of the unknowable Holy Trinity, and be renewed and changed as God reveals Himself intimately to the changing human heart.

He who asked for a fish is like the one who is drowning in the sea of life, with all its dangers, temptations and cares, and seeks help from God to be preserved. Does not such a prayer proceed directly from the knowledge of who God is, and our humble assessment of ourselves and our human weakness?

"He who asks for an egg is he who asks for that which is born of a virtuous soul. For the virtuous soul can indeed be likened to a bird, because it takes wing, and is carried aloft by the breath of the Holy Spirit, and flies upwards from the earth" (Bl Theofylact)

Christian, take care what you ask for. Do you beg for the knowledge of God? Are you continually aware of the dangers in this life, and your own weakness and sin, and therefor, like Peter in the midst of the waves, cry, "Lord save me?" Is your heart's desire to become a virtuous man, and a learner and doer of the commandments? If you are beset with a certain sin, do you beg God not only for forgiveness, but also for the strength to be victorious over it? The prayers in our prayer books ask for such things, and this is why they are so valuable to us, but we must also groan from the depths of our hearts at all times for these spiritual things.

23rd Wednesday after Pentecost

Luke 11:9-13

And I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. {10} For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened. (Luke 11:9-10)

Sometimes a little bit of knowledge of Greek is a critical prerequisite to the understanding of holy writ. All the commands given here, "ask", "seek", "knock", are in the present imperative in the Greek, which signifies continuous, ongoing action.

What are the implications of this command? As obedient children, we must follow our Lord's command. We must continually entreat, continually beg of the Lord the things we need, like the woman of Canaan, like the two blind men. However, even if a Christian takes these commands to heart and strives to follow them, he will have only begun to plumb the depths of their meaning.

Herein also lies a promise, and a path, a disposition, and a clear inference of what we should pray for with such repetition and zeal. The entire path of life in the church, the manner and content of our divine services and our way of life proceeds from a correct understanding of these holy commands.

The promise is that we will be given those things that are precious to us, but only if we seek them diligently. What are those things? The Lord tells us that the object of our desire, our continuous striving, our labors and vigils, is precisely the Holy Spirit. He is given to those who ask, and seek and knock, continually, and with attention, and bold insistence. Does not a man who is seeking treasure in a field train his eyes with unwavering diligence on every spot of ground, and use every movement of his body economically to reach his desire? So should be our prayer. Without attention, our asking is without strength, and we cannot be given what we profess with our lips but do not hold in our hearts.

Does not the man who desires to see the master of the house, when he comes to his door after an arduous journey, knock insistently on the door? (Luke 11:5-8, read the previous day) He does not travel so far to merely stand by the door, waiting for the Master, if perchance he will pass through the portal. No, he hits the door with his fist, and even calls out, and will not let up until he has his audience.

We are given such a high and difficult command, and promised an even more exalted reward. The path of lifelong struggle, and asking and seeking and knocking is required to prepare us for the gift. Elias traveled 40 days and nights, and only after the flood, and the earthquake and the fire did he achieve stillness and hear the voice of God. (see 1 Kings 19:1-12) Christian, you must ask and seek and knock, and in so doing, be transfigured, be renewed and changed, and prepared for that very thing which you ask for.

We are given a hard command and a glorious promise. Perhaps though, we will despair, because we are so weak, or even indifferent and careless. We would not despair if we follow the path these commands will to trace for our lives. Let us use the "strength of that meat", and travel our forty days and forty nights in obedience as Elijah did. Our meat is the body and blood of the Lord, the grace of the Holy Spirit, and all good things which the Lord provides through His church. Our obedience is to live as we are told, and pray as the church has taught us to pray, fast as has been commanded, and be subject to the divine guidance and min of the church in all things. Our journey is long, and on it we are bound to stumble, but our persistence in asking, seeking and knocking will attract the mercy of God, and the strength to reach our destination.

Christian, if you have trouble with sin, ask, and seek and knock. Beg the Lord to strengthen you against whatever it is that is defeating you. It matters not how weak you are, or how sinful, but whether you are persistent in calling upon the mercy of God. He will change you, albeit according to his time. Call upon God's mercy, and show your sincerity by your fasting, daily prayer, standing in the holy vigils, frequent confession and communion of the life giving mysteries. If you continue to ask, and seek and knock, you will be given the Holy Spirit.

All unsigned or unattributed portions Copyright 1997 Fr Seraphim Holland

Address: 2102 Summit, McKinney TX 75071

Phone: 972 529-2754

Email: seraphim@orthodox.net

Web: http://www.orthodox.net

This journal is at http://www.orthodox.net/redeeming/redeeming.01.05.html

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Distribute this text if you wish, but only if attribution and all contact information is included. I would appreciate being contacted if any large scale use of this text is desired. Many texts like this are on our web page.


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Russian Orthodox Church
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Phone: 972 529-2754
Priest Seraphim Holland

nicholas@orthodox.net
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Email:
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Phone:
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