Orthodoxy (45)

Wednesday, 04 March 2015 08:00

The Life of a Saint: Gerasimos of Jordan

Gerasimos of Jordan
Feast Day: March 4

The story of Gerasimos, a pious monk who formed an attachment with the acknowledged king of beasts, the lion, has suffered greatly through fictional accounts over the years. It is important to note the power of the Lord Jesus Christ, which extends all things visible and invisible. This account of Gerasimos and his unusual relationship with a lion is proof of that.

Born in the seventh century, in the province of Lycia, Asia Minor, lions roamed the region, as in the account of Sampson from the Old Testament. Having come from a family of leisure-class wealth, it is difficult to believe that he would one day walk away from this life for the simple self-denial that comes from monasticism. Yet, he did just that when he felt the call to the service of Jesus Christ, and left the comfort for the confines of a cloister of the desert. He dedicated himself totally to the Saviour.

Monday, 23 February 2015 16:34

Great Lent 2015 - A Few Words

Today is known as Clean Monday and is the day following Cheesefare Sunday. This day marks the beginning of Great Lent and is when we begin preparing ourselves for the Great Feast of Holy Pascha. Great Lent is the forty-day period that begins on Clean Monday and ends on Holy Pascha, which is the most important Feast of the Christian year. As a result, a strict fast is observed today.

During this period of Great Lent, we are instructed to fast from both meat and cheese products but more importantly, we are also instructed to fast spiritually. Spiritually fasting is the taming of our thoughts, words, and actions. By fasting from foods, we train our bodies in discipline and self-control. We also do away with the many evils that take advantage of us in this weak state and cause us to sin. Fasting from foods aids us in our spiritual fast and so prepares us for Holy Pascha.

Tuesday, 03 February 2015 17:00

The Life of a Saint: Saint Charalambos

Saint Charalambos
Feast Day: February 10

Charalambos was a priest who suffered inhuman tortures and martyrdom at the hands of pagan tormentors, greater than any other martyr. Despite possessing divine courage and steadfastness of faith, placing him among the Saints, he was still human; the sharpness of pain that he felt, was the same as that of an ordinary man. We venerate him as a Saint in the highest tradition of a martyr for his steadfast refusal to renounce the Lord.

Growing up in the town of Magnesia, Asia Minor, during the second century, Charalambos was ordained a priest at an early age. He served his home town in a province fiercely hostile to Christians. Thanks to his reputation as a preacher and man of God, he was placed as a leader of the tiny Christian body that grew steadily, despite the odds. He brought the light of the Lord's love to everyone in the community, subsequently bringing upon himself the envy and wrath of those in power.

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