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A new heart of mercy and love

Readings for the day: 1 Cor. 8:8–9:2; Matt. 25:31–46.     Today is both Meatfare Sunday and the day on which we remember the Last Judgment. The readings we have just heard speak to both of these directly and in complementary ways.   With Meatfare Sunday our preparation for Great Lent begins to take on…

Return to the Father

Written by Fr. Thomas Hopko, The Lenten Spring is a book of spiritual readings for the season of Great Lent. People feel unhappy and they don’t know why. They feel that something is wrong, but they can’t put their finger on what. They feel uneasy in the world, confused and frustrated, alienated and estranged, and they…

A feast of water

A homily delivered in Three Hierarchs Chapel at St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary on January 6, 2016. Readings for the day may be accessed here.     Archpriest Chad Hatfield is the first Chancellor of St. Vladimir’s Seminary. Father Chad came to SVOTS from St. Herman Seminary in Alaska, where he was serving as the…

The turning point of time

A homily delivered in Three Hierarchs Chapel at St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary on December 25, 2015.   Today, at this feast, we stand at the turning point of time.   Not simply another turning point, as the world spins on its axis, or rotates around the sun, but the turning point of time itself;…

God does not need words

People often ask: how should we pray, in what words, and in what language? Some even say: “I do not pray because I do not know how; I do not know any prayers.” You do not need any specialized skill for prayer. You can simply talk to God. Many Orthodox Churches across the world use…

Known by a name

A homily delivered in Three Hierarchs Chapel at St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary on Sunday, October 25, 2015. The Gospel reading for the day can be found here. We are so familiar with most of the readings that we hear in Church on Sunday mornings, especially those that recount a memorable parable, that we rarely…

It is good to settle in the heart.

Are we always able to receive the divine in us? When we invite friends to our home, we clean the living room, adorn it with flowers, make it as beautiful and welcoming as possible, to make them feel the warmth of the friendship with which we want to surround them. Is the same true also…

Ten Things for Holy Week

Sermon, Fifth Sunday of Lent 2015 (St Mary of Egypt) Mark 10:32-45 This morning, James and John desire to be seated with Christ in His Glory. And our Lord, to test them, asks whether they are able to drink the cup that He drinks, and to be baptized with the baptism with which He is…