The knowledge of God, generally spoken of in a very experiential manner, is an absolute foundation in Orthodox theology. Nothing replaces it — no dogmatic formula, no Creed, not even Scripture — though Orthodoxy would see none of these things as separate from the knowledge of God. But the questions I have received are very apt. In a culture that is awash in “experience,” what do the Orthodox mean when we speak of such things and what do we mean by such knowledge of God?
Blog Tag: Orthodox Teaching
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Orthodox Christianity involves the whole of life. Every part of an Orthodox Christian’s life is lived in, through and for Christ. Following Christ’s teaching, love for God and love for man constitute the centre of our being. This week, one of The Good Shepherd’s parishioners sent me his reflections the moral case for being vaccinated. I’d like to share it with you. “I’ve assessed the risk vs. reward trade-off of obtaining the COVID-19 vaccination as being strongly positive.
At the start of this week, I was looking forward very much to seeing more faces I haven’t seen for the last three or four months at the Liturgy this coming Sunday. Then yesterday we had the news that we were in lockdown again and wouldn’t be able to have anyone at church apart from those needed to serve the Liturgy. I have to confess that my first reaction was; LORD have mercy. I think I felt like the Psalmist sometimes felt when facing difficult times:
The Holy Mysteries (also known as “Sacraments”) express how God restores people to a loving, trusting relationship with Him through the Church. They are the primary means of communicating His peace, love and grace in the form of His indwelling presence. Let’s explore the Holy Mysteries. Background From the earliest days, the Church considered that there was exactly one Holy Mystery—the Church itself. St Irenaeus wrote:
On the fifth Sunday of Great Lent, we commemorate St. Mary of Egypt and the Gospel reading from Mark (10:32-45). This week is the Sunday before Palm Sunday, or ‘The Triumphal Entrance into Jerusalem’, and the beginning of the salvific Passions that end up on the Cross and then is completed with His glorious resurrection. The Lord began preparing His disciples by telling them what would happen to Him. Foreseeing that the minds of His disciples would be troubled by His Passion, He foretells both the pain of His Passion, and the glory of His Resurrection.
On the day of the Presentation of our Lord in the Temple, Sunday, February 2, The Good Shepherd conducted a churching service for Marianne and Sophia. Churching is the blessing of mother and child forty days after giving birth. The mother and child are blessed at the door of the Church, the priest then carries the infant into the altar while asking God to bless them. What follows is a text of the sermon preached by The Good Shepherd’s Æthelwold Jenkins immediately following the churching. — Fr. Geoff
Learning to live a life of repentance is aided greatly by the Holy Mystery of Repentance. Commonly called “Confession,” it brings enormous relief from the burden of sin. Sin erects a barrier that feels like it cuts us off from God, interrupting our intimacy with Him. Confessing our sins to Christ and being assured they are forgiven restores intimacy.