Thursday, May 5, 2011

May 5, 2011 / April 22, 2011

Second Week of Pascha. Tone one.
Venerable Theodore the Sykeote, bishop of Anastasiopolis (613).
New Hieromartyr Eustaphius priest (1918).
Hieromartyr Platon of Banja Luka (1941).
Martyr Demetrius (1942).
Apostles Nathaniel, Luke, and Clement.
Translation of the relics of St. Vsevolod (in holy baptism Gabriel), prince and wonderworker of Pskov (1138).
Venerable Vitalis of the monastery of Abba Serid (Seridos) at Gaza (609-620).
Martyr Leonidas of Alexandria (202).
Martyr Epipodius of Lyons (177) (Gaul).
Martyr Nearchus (Greek).


A Word from the Abbot:

The collective human condition is one of alienation from God, due to the sinful nature of us all. Every problem in the world has it's roots in this state of alienation. This would include the divisions within families, nations, religions, social classes, and all that keeps us apart. Only when we acquire peace, which is a gift from God, can this alienation be dispelled. The root cause of this alienation can be found in the ego. It is the ego, which sees itself as the center of everything, and sees self as all important, which caused the of Fall of human kind. The cure of this spiritual illness, is in the acquisition of a humble and contrite heart. When we struggle against the ego, with the prayerful desire to be transformed by the Holy Spirit, we see that all our neighbors, including those who are of other faiths, nations, and races, are our brothers and sisters (our relatives.) We see that money, the acquisition of "things," our "social status," and our "tribe," are all but part of our collective human condition of alienation from God. Even our alienation from the environment, which has resulted in the pollution of our planet, is related to our alienation from God. It is this same alienated state that is the root of our cruelty to animals, seeing them as "resources" to be used, and abused.

Our world is on the brink of disaster, and we refuse to notice, all because we are so centered on ourselves. If we wonder why there are divisions among peoples of the world, we need look no further than ourselves. When war breaks out with another country, we assume it is their fault, because, after all, "God is on our side." We are like families, always wanting to put the blame on one relative, yet refusing to believe that it might be we who are in need of change.

The only way to end this alienation, is in true repentance. When we start to speak like the Holy Apostle Paul, and say, with true conviction, "I am the chief of sinners," grace abounds, and God changes our hearts. Without the acquisition of a humble and contrite heart, for ourselves, it will always be about "them."

"Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on me a sinner." 

Abbot Tryphon


Photos of the Day:

I took these photos of the grounds of the monastery, earlier today.

Scripture Readings for the Day:

Acts 4:23-31

Prayer for Boldness

23 And being let go, they went to their own companions and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said to them. 24 So when they heard that, they raised their voice to God with one accord and said: “Lord, You are God, who made heaven and earth and the sea, and all that is in them, 25 who by the mouth of Your servant David have said:

      ‘ Why did the nations rage,
      And the people plot vain things?
       26 The kings of the earth took their stand,
      And the rulers were gathered together
      Against the LORD and against His Christ.’

27 “For truly against Your holy Servant Jesus, whom You anointed, both Herod and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles and the people of Israel, were gathered together 28 to do whatever Your hand and Your purpose determined before to be done. 29 Now, Lord, look on their threats, and grant to Your servants that with all boldness they may speak Your word, 30 by stretching out Your hand to heal, and that signs and wonders may be done through the name of Your holy Servant Jesus.”
31 And when they had prayed, the place where they were assembled together was shaken; and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spoke the word of God with boldness.
John 5:24-30

Life and Judgment Are Through the Son

24 “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life. 25 Most assuredly, I say to you, the hour is coming, and now is, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God; and those who hear will live. 26 For as the Father has life in Himself, so He has granted the Son to have life in Himself, 27 and has given Him authority to execute judgment also, because He is the Son of Man. 28 Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice 29 and come forth—those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation. 30 I can of Myself do nothing. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is righteous, because I do not seek My own will but the will of the Father who sent Me.

Click photo to enlarge.

No comments:

Post a Comment