Pascha

Fifth Tuesday of Great Lent. Orthodox Christian Lent, Prayer, Fasting and Baptism »

March 31st, 2020    Posted in Daily Meditations

By Fr. Patrick Reardon, March 13, 2005 The word “Lent,” now associated exclusively with the observance of the liturgical year, originally meant “spring” and had no directly religious significance. In English usage, however, its reference was gradually limited to the season of preparation for Pascha, a season that does, in fact, coincide with spring. In languages dependent on Latin, the word for Lent is some variant of “forty,” derived from […]

The Fourth Monday of Great Lent. As Lent Moves On—The Greatest Fast Awaits »

March 23rd, 2020    Posted in Daily Meditations

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, April 9, 2019  As Great Lent has passed its mid-point, attention begins to move towards Holy Week itself and its very intense focus. It has been an unusual time for me, having traveled on two successive weekends to lead retreats. Travel is always disruptive, and absence from your own community creates a break in the normal continuity of the Fast. I have great sympathies for those […]

The First (Pure) Monday of the Great Fast. »

March 2nd, 2020    Posted in Daily Meditations

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, February 15, 2010  [Pure] Monday marks the beginning of Great Lent in the Orthodox Church (which liturgically begins at Forgiveness Vespers on Sunday). Though Great Lent is kept with rigor in Orthodox Tradition, there is nothing unusual asked of believers – nothing that we do not do on many days throughout the rest of the year. We fast; we pray; we give alms; we attend services, […]

Theophany and the Gates of Hades »

January 6th, 2020    Posted in Daily Meditations

By Father Stephen Freeman, January 6, 2015  For an Orthodox priest, the services of the Church involve many “comings and goings.” Part of any service takes place within the altar area, which is usually enclosed by an iconostasis, a wall on which icons are hung. The wall does not truly separate one area of the Church from another so much as it marks one area off from another – the […]

Put the Dickens back in Christmas »

December 19th, 2019    Posted in Daily Meditations

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, December 20, 2017 In the late 1600’s in colonial Boston, the celebration of Christmas was against the law. Indeed, anyone evidencing the “spirit of Christmas” could be fined five shillings. In the early 1800’s, Christmas was better known as a season for rioting in the streets and civil unrest.1 However, in the mid-1800’s some interesting things changed the cultural response to the feast and, in 1870, Christmas […]