Pastoral Reflections

Casting Out Demons in Our Lives

Do you realize that the very first thing we do in the Sacrament of Baptism, which is our entrance into the Christian way of life, is to renounce Satan and all his works and all his worship and all his angels and all his pride? In other words, we begin our Christian life by acknowledging the reality of the devil and his demons, and then declaring an all out war upon them by renouncing them. Even by spitting upon them! We totally and absolutely reject Satan’s demonic side of life! Continue Reading »

A Light to Influence Others

“The criminal in your community may be less guilty for his crime than you, his Christian neighbor,” the great Russian writer Dostoievski wrote in his book The Brothers Karamazov. “For you could have been a light to the evil doer, yet you were not. For the man remained beside you in darkness. Had you been the kind of example you ought to have been and allowed your light to shine on that lost man’s path, perhaps he might not have stumbled into his crime. If you had loved your neighbor as yourself and lavished upon him some of the care you generously lavish upon yourself, shared some of the warmth God has privileged you to possess, that criminal might have changed in time.” Continue Reading »

Seek First the Kingdom of God - The Life of Fr. Arseny

“Fr. Arseny helped so many people that we, looking at him, began helping others. How did I become a believer?” noted a former communist atheist, “After watching Fr. Arseny for a long time, how could I NOT become what he was! He was a light in unbearable darkness!” Continue Reading »

Fools For Christ

Who wants to be considered a fool? Anyone? Foolishness is not a virtue that we admire, or strive to attain, and yet, today as we celebrate the Holy Apostles, the first followers of Jesus Christ, and a day after we honored the Apostles Peter and Paul, the foremost leaders of the Apostles, we hear in St. Paul’s Epistle about the “foolishness” of the first Christians. Continue Reading »

All Saints Sunday

The saints of the Church represent quite a wide range of fascinating people. Some were apostles, prophets and martyrs; bishops, priests and ascetics; men and women; rich and poor; old and young; some who were murderers and thieves early in their lives; others were prostitutes and quite immoral in their behavior; all who were sick and broken to some degree, whether physically, mentally, emotionally, or spiritually; many who were quite lost in their lives. Continue Reading »

Suffering as an Opportunity to See God: Sunday of the Blind Man

In today’s Gospel lesson, we get a glimpse into the problem of suffering. Many people often ask me, “Why do people suffer? Why does God allow pain and problems in the world? The disciples posed this question to Jesus today in the Gospel lesson. Continue Reading »

Sunday of the Paralytic: The Plague of Lonliness

Someone once asked a famous doctor, “What is the most devastating disease among people today.” He immediately replied, “Loneliness. The longer I practice medicine, the surer I am that no condition is so painful and universal as loneliness.” Continue Reading »

Great and Holy Pascha: The Good News of Christ's Resurrection

On this glorious feast of Pascha, let us not listen to the voices of society that try to ridicule and reject the resurrection as some myth. Instead, let us rejoice in hope! Christ is Risen and He offers new life to all the world! We no longer fear anything, even death itself! Continue Reading »

Palm Sunday: Commitment vs. Crowd Mentality

It’s easy to join a crowd and go along with the masses. And we often see how easy it is to get hyped up with mass hysteria. Yet to make a commitment is something quite different. To commit to following a path, despite what the majority say or do, is quite a challenge. Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Friday Of The Sixth Week

Today’s reading is taken from the final passages from the Book of Genesis... Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Thursday Of The Sixth Week

Be glad, O Bethany: for Christ shall come to you, performing in you a great and fearful miracle... Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Wednesday Of The Sixth Week

Growing up as an Orthodox Christian, I will admit I never understood the significance of Holy Communion... Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Tuesday Of The Sixth Week

“Jesus Wept” “There is not a shorter verse in the Bible, nor a larger text.” ~John Donne Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Monday Of The Sixth Week

Has this Lent made a difference in your everyday life? Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Sunday Of The Fifth Week

On this day, we remember in a special way a woman that many would probably not think of as being holy or worthy of honor... Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Friday Of The Fifth Week

We look to Jesus to discover how God acts in the world Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Saturday Of The Fifth Week

The answer to life’s most troubling questions is simple... Continue Reading »

Greatness in the Eyes of God

How many of us wish to be great in the eyes of God?  I would hope that any serious believer would make this a central goal in life – to be considered great in the eyes of God. And yet, how should we understand such spiritual greatness? What makes someone great? Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Thursday Of The Fifth Week

It is so easy to fall into routine, often without realizing it! Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Wednesday Of The Fifth Week

It is no secret that one of the greatest obstacles to the growth of Christianity today is the life of most Christians... Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Tuesday Of The Fifth Week

Open unto me, O Giver of Life, the gates of repentance... Continue Reading »

The Sanctity of Life by Fr. Luke A. Veronis

I rarely preach politics from the pulpit. I realize in our congregation we have Democrats and Republican; we have those who may be more conservative and others more liberal. Our country is so divided, and if we talk politics, our own church family will quickly become divided. That is, we will become divided if we forget that our ultimate leader is Jesus Christ, and His call is for us to live under the reign of His Kingdom. Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Monday Of The Fifth Week

Have you ever been stopped dead in your tracks? Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Sunday Of The Fourth Week

From our youth we have certainly learned that prayer is like having a conversation with God... Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Saturday Of The Fourth Week

Tomorrow, the Fourth Sunday of Great Lent is dedicated to Saint John Climacus... Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Friday Of The Fourth Week

Fasting is a constant means of renewing oneself spiritually... Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Thursday Of The Fourth Week

Is your life the same ol’, same ol’? Is it full, is it non- existent? Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Wednesday Of The Fourth Week

When we seek God’s Kingdom, we don’t physically journey anywhere, yet we travel a great distance.... Continue Reading »

Struggling to Stay on the Faithful Path

“O Faithless generation. How long shall I be with you? How long shall I bear with you?” (Mk 9:19) Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Sunday Of The Third Week

Through the sanctification of the Cross, all the symbolism of the Old Testament becomes apparent... Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Saturday Of The Third Week

Tomorrow, we will reach the midpoint of Great Lent... Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Friday Of The Third Week

In our world of quick fixes and transformations, the Church proclaims a new makeover... Continue Reading »

The Way of the Cross

Let us use these tools of the Lenten season – fasting, discipline, ascesis – to help us cultivate more the essence of our faith – CONCRETE LOVE THROUGH SIMPLE ACTIONS TO ALL PEOPLE! Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Thursday Of The Third Week

Halfway between the beginning of Lent and Palm Sunday, we are reminded to venerate the Cross... Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Wednesday Of The Third Week

In the midst of Great Lent it would be interesting to take a ‘Spiritual Audit'... Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Tuesday Of The Third Week

Today our lives are so full of the demands of work and family that often precious little time is left for us to cultivate our spiritual life... Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Monday Of The Third Week

“If anyone wishes to come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.” Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Sunday Of The Second Week

Deep down, we usually know what God is saying to us... Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Saturday Of The Second Week

Each of us is seeking direction in our life... Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Friday Of The Second Week

I am reminded of what I learned in my first year of youth ministry 19 years ago...SILENCE IS GOLDEN! Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Thursday Of The Second Week

What is prayer? Is it an almost magical attempt to influence God, to change his will or to call Him to his duties? Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Wednesday Of The Second Week

You enter the Church and take your pew. You find yourself in an holy environment... Continue Reading »

The Three-Fold Call of the Annunciation

“Today is the beginning of our salvation, and the revelation of the mystery of ages, 
for the Son of God becomes the Son of the Virgin.” Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Tuesday Of The Second Week

As we seek to improve ourselves spiritually during this holy time... Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Tuesday of the Second Week 2

When the Disciples of Christ were unable to cast out the demon from a young man, their master admonished them saying that the demon could only be cast out by prayer and fasting. The Great Forty Days is a time we when we are called to a heightened awareness of prayer and fasting. Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Monday Of The Second Week

St. Paul tells us to “pray constantly”... Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Sunday Of The First Week

The first Sunday of the Great Lent is known to many as the Triumph of Orthodoxy... Continue Reading »

Clergy Reflection: Saturday Of The First Week

Today, in all of our parishes, we celebrate the life of Christ in the Divine Liturgy even as we remember our departed loved ones... Continue Reading »

 

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