Sunday, November 29, 2020

-Saint Demetrios and the olives-

-Saint Demetrios and the olives-

"This is the reason, we have the Saints in our house, for the difficult times …”

“Once there was a man without faith who had a faithful wife, nonetheless. His wife was talking to him about faith, but he would not listen. One day they were gathering olives in the fields but the night came and they had not taken them back home yet, so they had to leave them outside. The husband said:
-We should not leave them outside, they will get stolen. 
-“God will protect them”. His wife told him
-“What are you talking about… If we do not take care of them…no God will…how can you believe in God…?”
-“God will protect them since we cannot carry them now…”

In the end, they left the olives there and during the night someone went and stole them. His poor wife … how would she confront her husband now, what would she do before this beast? He was a savage and you realize what would happen…

In their home, they had an icon of Theotokos, Saint Demetrios and St. Nikolaos. The husband goes and stands before the icons and he says to Saint Dimitrios who was riding a horse in his holy icon:

“You, what is your purpose inside the house? And why does this woman (his wife) thinks you can protect us? 

She has a child in her arms [referring to (the icon of) Theotokos], she cannot go out and find them. He is an old man, (referring to Saint Nikolaos), he cannot outrun them. But you, a young man on horseback, will you let them take our olives? You will go and get them back, otherwise, I am going to burn these…

Before he finished his threatening words to the holy icons, he listens to voices coming from outside the house. Three animals were carrying the olives. With them, the two guys that had stolen them. They arrive and say to him:

“We were wrong, we committed a sin to steal your olives. But did you have to send this young man to beat us up? Why did you send this army officer?

The husband was shocked!”

We have icons of the Saints in our houses and we burn incense to them, we light candles to them but we do not believe that they are ready and willing to help us. 

Some people have 200 Saints in their houses and if something bad happens they will run immediately to seek help somewhere else, instead of turning to their Saints and say

“Please, help me!”

This is the reason, we have the Saints in our house, for the difficult times …”

Part of a homily of Demetrios Panagopoulos, (1916 - 1982)

Monday, August 24, 2020

How Panagia Prousiotissa stopped the spreading of the Spanish flu miraculously.


How Panagia Prousiotissa stopped the spreading of the Spanish flu miraculously.

On the 9th day following the Dormition of our Most Holy Theotokos, we celebrate the feast of a spectacular miracle working icon, Panagia Prousiotissa. 

The vast miracles which have been attributed to this icon have brought healing and salvation to the millions of faithful who beseech our Panagia with faith and reverence. While Her countless miracles are all awe inspiring, there is one miracle in particular which is directly relevant to the trying and difficult times we are living today.

Monday, July 13, 2020

The beatitudes of Saint Paisios the Athonite

The beatitudes of Saint Paisios the Athonite

Saint Paisios wrote these beatitudes "as does the madman who writes his outbursts on the wall with charcoal." The reason for the initial craziness was five letters, one after the other, from various parts of Greece on a variety of subjects. While the events described were great blessings of God, those who wrote to St Paisios had fallen into despair because they dealt with them in a worldly way. "After replying accordingly to their letters, I took the pencil like a madman, as I have said, and wrote this epistle."

The Song of Hagia Sophia


The  Song of Hagia Sophia 

(The lament of the Hellenic people, which is full of hope, after the Fall of Constantinople 1453)

God sounds out, the earth sounds out, the heavens sound out.
And the Hagia Sophia also sounds out, the great monastery,
With four hundred sounding-boards and sixty-two bells,
For each bell a priest, for each priest a deacon.

A prophecy of St Paisios

Sunday, November 24, 2019

SHOULD ALL CHRISTIANS PRAY CEASELESSLY? -by St. Nikodemos the Hagiorite-



SHOULD ALL CHRISTIANS PRAY CEASELESSLY?
-by St. Nikodemos the Hagiorite-

My beloved Christians, let no one think that only members of the clergy and monastics are obligated to pray ceaselessly at all times, whereas laypeople are exempt from this. No! Not at all! 

All Christians in general have the obligation to constantly be in a state of prayer. 

The most-holy patriarch of Constantinople Philotheos writes the following in regard to this matter, in his biography of St. Gregory Palamas, Archbishop of Thessaloniki: The divine St. Gregory was close friends with a guileless and virtuous monk named Job. Once, while conversing with him, he referred to the fact that every Christian in general must make a sustained effort to pray ceaselessly, citing the Apostle Paul who commands all Christians: “Pray ceaselessly” (1 Thes. 5:17); the prophet David who—despite the fact that he was a king and had to attend to all the matters of his kingdom—states: “I beheld the Lord ever before me” [through prayer] (Ps. 15:8); and St. Gregory the Theologian who similarly advises all Christians that it is necessary to commemorate the name of God through prayer more frequently than we breathe. 

Saturday, September 21, 2019

The Wonderworker Woman - Saint Matrona

The Wonderworker Woman 
- Saint Matrona -

The Blessed Saint Matrona is one of the most beloved Muscovite saints, who lived and worked miracles in our times, and her story and relics are cherished by all Russians.

Now, English speakers can be glad to hear that a Russian TV series on this wonderful saint is available on YouTube with English subtitles.

The series is the result of nine years of archival work, putting together some of the most amazing miracles attributed to St. Matrona, and is aptly named “The Wonderworker Woman.”



Monday, January 22, 2018

The Story of the Miraculous Icon of the Virgin Known as “Paramithia” (Comfort, Consolation) at the Holy Mountain Monastery of Vatopedi

The Story of the Miraculous Icon of the Virgin 
Known as “Paramythia” (Comfort, Consolation) 
at the Holy Mountain Monastery of Vatopedi
 
+ January 21

In olden times there came once to the Holy Mountain a band or pirates to enter into and loot one of the wealthiest monasteries of the Holy Mountain, the Monastery of Vatopedi. They arrived in the evening and hid in the bushes around the monastery so that they could enter as soon as the gates were opened the following morning. However, the Caretaker of all the Holy Mountain, the Most Holy Virgin Theotokos, would not permit the carrying out of this barbarous act. This is how the plan of the pirates was averted:

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Questions often asked about the Mother of God the Most Holy Theotokos


Questions often asked about the Mother of God the Most Holy Theotokos

Question: Why do you pray to the Mother of God?

Answer: Since Jesus Christ died on the Cross and rose from the dead, conquering death for us, there is no reason why we cannot ask those in heaven to pray for us just as we ask those still living on earth for their prayers. After all, in Christ all are alive. Therefore we ask the Ever-Virgin Mary to pray to her Son for us, just as we also ask the angels, the saints, and all the faithful believers here on earth to pray on our behalf, as Scripture commands us to do: “I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, and giving of thanks, be made for all men… I will therefore, that men pray everywhere” (I Timothy 2:1,8). We turn readily to our friends and neighbors to ask for their prayers in our time of need; are not those in heaven even more our friends than those on earth? Why should they not intercede for us also before the throne of God?

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Sayings of St Anthony the Great


Sayings of St Anthony the Great

1. When the holy Abba Anthony was living in the desert, he fell into acedia (a lack of concern for his salvation/ indifference to spiritual things) and was darkened by many impassioned thoughts (logismoi). He said to God, ”Lord, I want to be saved, but these thoughts will not leave me alone. What shall I do in my distress? How can I be saved?” A little later, when he got up to go out, Anthony saw someone like himself, sitting and working, then rising from work and praying, and again sitting and plaiting a rope, then again rising for prayer.” It was an angel of the Lord, sent to correct him and assure him. And he heard the angel saying, “Do this and you will be saved.” And when he heard this, he was filled with great joy and courage. He did this, and he was saved.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

The Priest (Russian movie with English subtitles)




The Priest 
(Russian movie with English subtitles)

A historical film by Vladimir Khotinenko, unveils a page of the Second World War history that is little known of - the Russian Pskov Orthodox mission, that had to survive in Pskov region after it had been occupied by German fascists. Times long gone, but there are still wars, and each of us still faces the same daily choice - remain a human or become a beast and a traitor...

Sunday, December 24, 2017

The night of Christmas

The night of Christmas 

BY FR ELPIDIOS VAGIANAKIS

It was slowly getting dark and the sun was disappearing behind the mountains of Bethlehem. The cold and frost made the inhabitants of this small village, as well as all those who came from distant places to be registered at the place of their birth, go inside their homes early. Soon the streets were deserted and no one was walking about outside.
To tell the truth not everyone, because just outside the village a pious man, leading a donkey with a young girl on its back, who looked like she was pregnant, was anxious to arrive at a house in time before it got too late.
Every now and then, he was trying to give her courage, because he saw that the time to give birth had come and the young girl was extremely tired from the trip which had taken several days.
Some hours ago he had given her his cloak and everything else he had to cover her and keep her warm, while in the twilight he was looking for the path leading to the village.