Volume 12 No. 2 ~ OF THE CHURCH ~ OF MAN WITH GOD ~ March, 2004 A.D.

CONTENTS

TOPIC/TITLE

Publication Notice
S.S.B. News
Divine Liturgy Cards
Products Request Form

TEACHING:

Children’s Pages
BIBLE HISTORY FOR CHILDREN
The Orthodox - Basilian Catechism

WHEN PRIEST SIN (+ Paul, S.S.B.) Christ Suffered, Died, And Arose From The Dead, For Sinning Priest, As Well As For You

ARE WE AS FERVENT IN RELIGION AS LT. KHADEM? Jay Lenno of The Tonight Show is not! There is no god but Allah, and Muhammed is his prophet, Iraqi Bomb Squad Lieutenant Hazim Khadem prays

ABORTION AND THE RECEPTION OF HOLY COMMUNION, Louisiana Governor Kathleen Blanco, Lieutenant Governor Mitch Landrieu, Senator Edward Kennedy, Senator Mary Landrieu 1

WE MUST BE UNIFIED IN CHRIST AS A CHOIR IS UNIFIED IN SONG All members of a choir must sing in unity, Sometimes the one in discord is tone deaf 1

MODERNISM, MODERNISTIC PRECEPTS, AND OTHER THOUGHTS PROMPTED BY A DISTANT MIRROR, by Barbara W. Tuchmann, Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 1997 (Prompted by, but not necessarily held by, promoted by, or even desired by, just prompted by.) one must possess the insistent principle that the preservation of one’s spirit 1

THE AWESOME RESPONSIBILITY OF ANY AUTHORITY And Total Inability to Avoid Responsibility Imagine a home or work-place without Charity and Wisdom, A person or place that is without Charity and Wisdom is a person or place without goodness - it may not be overtly evil, but it is without goodness and thus is inclined to evil, nastiness, belittling, and using of people 18

GENERAL INFORMATION:

WWW, E-Mail mailing lists

GENERAL:

PERSONAL, SELF-GLORIFICATION ARE IMMOBILIZING THE CHURCH It Must Be Reunified The seeking of temporal power, position, glory and esteem of one’s self, status, and position, and the keeping, maintaining, and exercising of these, have resulted in an intolerable disruption of the ability of the Church to function as fully; The Feast of Saint Peter’s Chair

AN INSIGHT TO THE VIEWS OF RUSSIAN PATRIARCH ALEXI II REGARDING RELATIONS WITH THE ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH

AN ASSORTMENT OF VIEWS ON RE-ESTABLISHING A COMMON DATE FOR PASCHA

FASTING, ABSTINENCE, AND THEIR PURPOSE, We have the example of Our Saviour Himself 19

+



Please pray that those who have been pressured into having an abortion will receive and accept God’s Grace of repentance, reconciliation, forgiveness, and healing.

The only positive thing that happens in an abortion is the positive cash flow for the abortionist.

Would that all people, especially the young, will learn to respect the Divinely intrinsic value of human life.

Needed - an increase in the number of people who devote time and resources to pro-life matters.


BIBLE HISTORY FOR CHILDREN

25. Jesus is Seized

WHILE Jesus was yet speaking, Judas came with a great crowd of soldiers and servants. They had lanterns, torches, swords and clubs. Judas had told them: "Whom I shall kiss, that is He; hold Him fast."

2. And the traitor came up to Jesus, and said: "Hail, Rabbi," and he kissed Him. Jesus said to him: "Friend, whereto art thou come? Judas, dost thou betray the Son of man with a kiss?"

3. Then Jesus drew near the crowd, and asked: "Whom seek you?" They replied: "Jesus of Nazareth." Jesus answered: "I am He." And they started back, and fell to the ground, like dead.

4. But Jesus asked again: "Whom seek you?" They answered: "Jesus of Nazareth." Jesus said: "I have told you that I am He. If, therefore, you seek Me, let these go their way." They then laid hands on Him. But Peter, drawing his sword, struck the servant of the high priest, and cut off his right ear. That servant's name was Malchus. Jesus said to Peter: "Put up thy sword into the scabbard." He then touched the ear of Malchus and healed it.

5. They then seized Jesus and bound Him. And His disciples left Him and fled. Only Peter and John followed Him from afar.

QUESTIONS

1. Who came with a great crowd of soldiers?

2. What did Judas say to Jesus?

3. What did Jesus say to the Jews

4. What did Jesus ask them again?

What happened to them?

What of Peter?

5. How did the disciples act when Jesus was bound?

26. Jesus is Sentenced to Death by the Council

THE band of soldiers and servants led Jesus to Caiphas, the high priest. He had assembled all the members of the grand council. The high priest and the council tried to find witnesses against Jesus to put Him to death. But they found none.

2. At last Caiphas rose up, and said: "I adjure Thee by the living God, that Thou tell us, whether Thou be the Christ, the Son of the living God." Jesus answered: "Yes, I am He." Then the high priest rent his garments saying: "He has blasphemed. What think you ?" They answered: "He is guilty of death."

3. Jesus then was led away and watched until morning. During this time of the night the guards of the tribunal mocked Him. They spat in His face, blindfolded Him, struck Him, and blasphemed Him.

4. But Judas repented of having betrayed Jesus. He brought the thirty pieces of silver back to the scribes, saying: "I have sinned in betraying the innocent Jesus." The scribes answered: "What is that to us: look thou to it." Then casting down the money in the temple Judas went away, out of the city, and hanged himself with a halter.

QUESTIONS

1. Why had the high priest assembled the council?

2. How did Caiphas adjure Jesus?

3. What was done to Jesus during the rest of the night?

4. What about Judas?

+

return to contents

The Orthodox - Basilian Catechism

Q. 287. How can we know what sins are considered mortal?
A. We can know what sins are considered mortal from Holy Scripture; from the teaching of the Church, and from the writings of the Fathers and Doctors of the Church.

Q. 288. Why is it wrong to judge others guilty of sin?
A. It is wrong to judge others guilty of sin because we cannot know for certain that their sinful act was committed with sufficient reflection and full consent of the will.

Q. 289. What sin does he commit who without sufficient reason believes another guilty of sin?
A. He who without sufficient reason believes another guilty of sin commits a sin of rash judgment.

Q. 290. What is venial sin?
A. Venial sin is a slight offense against the law of God in matters of less importance, or in matters of great importance it is an offense committed without sufficient reflection or full consent of the will.

Q. 291. Can we always distinguish venial from mortal sin?
A. We cannot always distinguish venial from mortal sin, and in such cases we must leave the decision to our confessor.

Q. 292. Can slight offenses ever become mortal sins?
A. Slight offenses can become mortal sins if we commit them through defiant contempt for God or His law; and also when they are followed by very evil consequences, which we foresee in committing them.

Q. 293. Which are the effects of venial sin?
A. The effects of venial sin are the lessening of the love of God in our heart, the making us less worthy of His help, and the weakening of the power to resist mortal sin.

Q. 294. How can we know a thought, word or deed to be sinful?
A. We can know a thought, word or deed to be sinful if it, or the neglect of it, is forbidden by any law of God or of His Church, or if it is opposed to any supernatural virtue.

Q. 295. Which are the chief sources of sin?
A. The chief sources of sin are seven: Pride, Covetousness, Lust, Anger, Gluttony, Envy, and Sloth; and they are commonly called capital sins or the seven deadly sins. Some people call Gossip the eighth deadly sin, and though it is a sin, people usually gossip out of envy.

Q. 296. What is pride?
A. Pride is an excessive love of our own ability; so that we would rather sinfully disobey than humble ourselves.

Q. 297. What effect has pride on our souls?
A. Pride begets in our souls sinful ambition, vainglory, presumption and hypocrisy.

Q. 298. What is covetousness?
A. Covetousness is an excessive desire for worldly things.

Q. 299. What effect has covetousness on our souls?
A. Covetousness begets in our souls unkindness, dishonesty, deceit and want of charity.

Q. 300. What is lust?
A. Lust is an excessive desire for the sinful pleasures forbidden by the Sixth Commandment.

Q. 301. What effect has lust on our souls?
A. Lust begets in our souls a distaste for holy things, a perverted conscience, a hatred for God, and it very frequently leads to a complete loss of faith.

Q. 302. What is anger?
A. Anger is an excessive emotion of the mind excited against any person or thing, or it is an excessive desire for revenge.

Q. 303. What effect has anger on our soul?
A. Anger begets in our souls impatience, hatred, irreverence, and too often the habit of cursing.

Q. 304. What is gluttony?
A. Gluttony is an excessive desire for food or drink.

Q. 305. What kind of a sin is drunkenness?
A. Drunkenness is a sin of gluttony by which a person deprives himself of the use of his reason by the excessive taking of intoxicating drink.

Q. 306. Is drunkenness always a mortal sin?
A. Deliberate drunkenness is always a mortal sin if the person be completely deprived of the use of reason by it, but drunkenness that is not intended or desired may be excused from mortal sin.

Q. 307. What are the chief effects of habitual drunkenness?
A. Habitual drunkenness injures the body, weakens the mind, leads its victim into many vices and exposes him to the danger of dying in a state of mortal sin.

Q. 308. What three sins seem to cause most evil in the world?
A. Drunkenness, dishonesty and impurity seem to cause most evil in the world, and they are therefore to be carefully avoided at all times.

+

return to contents

~ WHEN PRIEST SIN ~
Christ Suffered, Died, And Arose From The Dead, For Sinning Priest, As Well As For You

From Metropolitan Archbishop Paul, S.S.B.
To the flock entrusted into my care:

Priest commit sins just like everyone else. And like everyone else, priest struggle against sinning with varying successes and failures. The position of trust which each priest holds, as well as his sacred office, do require each priest undergo greater scrutiny by his bishop than that which is given to the laity of a bishop’s flock. The religious of the community of each See must receive a similar greater scrutiny because of the positions of trust which are held by religious, and also because of the relatively helpless of the lower ranks of a religious community when confronted by abusive religious superiors.

This greater scrutiny must be in conjunction with the reality of Christ’s Sacrifice of Himself for the sins of all, including those of priest and religious. It is not a balance which must be struck, but a total intermeshing.

When a priest or religious commits what one might term a “normal” sin, the remedy and treatment are also “normal”. But when a priest or religious commits a sin which is not “normal”, such as sexual molestation of children, or blasphemy of The Sacred Eucharist by giving it to one who is pro-abortion, or by sadistic treatment of religious ranks by their superiors, or of homosexuality and sexual perversions amongst monastics (women as well as men), then the treatment and remedy must include protection of the victim(s) from any future harm by that priest, religious, or community, as well as rectification of the near occasion of sin.

These three factors are of equal importance: that the instant victim be “repaired”; that any potential future victims be protected; and that the errant individual(s) be provided access to all of the benefits of Our Saviour’s Passion, Death, and Resurrection.

Those entrusted with the administration of the Church must always follow and obey their implicit and de facto oath of allegiance to the meek Saviour, with no consideration for anything else, always remembering the corporate Church is ancillary and axillary to the Body of Christ.

+ Paul, S.S.B.

return to contents

ARE WE AS FERVENT IN
RELIGION AS LT. KHADEM?
Jay Lenno of The Tonight Show is not!

“There is no god but Allah, and Muhammed is his prophet,” Iraqi Bomb Squad Lieutenant Hazim Khadem prayed to himself as he jogged to defuse a bomb up the road from where his squad had stopped.

And he meant every word, thought, and essence of that prayer as he successfully diffused another bomb.

Lt. Khadem is an Iraqi policeman working for the stability and salvation of his country in accordance with the best assessment he knows of the religion in which he believes. And in practicing that religion and performing his job he not only protects and honors his fellow Iraqis, but also honors and protects members of the Coalition Forces which liberated his country from Sadam Hussain and his followers.

Any reference to god and any use of his name and any calling on god is sacred to Lt. Khadem.

But such is not sacred to Mr. Jay Lenno of The Tonight Show, as evidenced by his comments on that show which are best exemplified by his comments the evening of January 26, 2004 A.D.

On that show one of Mr. Lenno messed-up one of his jokes, and then engaged in some banter with his band leader about needing God’s help with the jokes, concluding his remarks with: Where is God when you need Him?

Lt. Khadem would never even begin to contemplate such an irreverent and abusive reference to God.

We know Mr. Lenno is not as reverent as is Lt. Khadem. Are you?

From their respective attitudes of reverence, which one do you think has a better probability of attaining eternal happiness and salvation with the One True God: Lt. Khadem who believes He is Allah, or Mr. Lenno? When you meet God, if you had to emulate either Lt. Khadem or Mr. Lenno, which would you rather emulate?

Do you pray? Do you mean what you pray? Do you pray carefully?

+

return to contents

ABORTION AND THE RECEPTION OF HOLY COMMUNION

One who in any manner allows, would allow, permit, promotes, performs, assists in any way or manner in or with, including but not limited to, the performance of an abortion, for any reason what-so-ever, can not receive Holy Communion, and can not receive any of the other Sacraments except for the Sacrament of Absolution, and this, only in the event they repent of and acknowledge their sin, confess it within the Sacrament, and seek reconciliation with God.

Why?

Because Holy Communion, the Sacred Eucharist, is, actually, really, totally and completely, the Body and the Blood of Jesus Christ, God, the Son of God, the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity; whole, complete, body and blood, soul and human spirit and divine spirit, complete in His human nature and also in His Divine Nature.

It does not represent Christ. It is Christ: every drop and every particle.

To receive Holy Communion one must be in a state of Grace - even a very slight state of Grace is sufficient. Those in a state of mortal sin are by definition not in a state of Grace, and are severed from the Body of Christ. Should they die, they would go to hell for all eternity.

It is not acceptable that God should be received into a soul in the state of spiritual filth of mortal sin, wherein Satan is the god of the person.

Receiving Holy Communion is not a social event. It is not a right. It is a privilege reserved to those who attempt to follow Christ, maintain a course in conformity with His teachings, and believe Him to be the Saviour, the Messiah.

Those who are pro-abortion are not following Christ and are disobeying His law and instructions, as are those who do not oppose abortion. Those who proclaim they are personally against abortion but will not attempt to impose this position on anyone else, de facto acquiesce to abortion, and therefore are pro-abortion - for in this instance what is not opposed is approved. Such persons are not in a state of Grace. They are in a state of mortal sin due to the severity of their transgression against God and His laws and instructions. They therefore can not receive Holy Communion.

By way of specific examples:

Newly elected Louisiana Governor Kathleen Blanco, a Roman Catholic, has on numerous occasions stated her official policy regarding abortion is, that she is against abortions, and only approves of abortions in the instances of rape, incest, or when the mother’s health is involved. The qualifier “only” before the word “approves” does not lessen the word “approves”. She approves of abortions.

Morally, the only instance where killing can possibly be supported is in the relatively rare occasions where the one being killed has performed or is performing some willful action which results in the potential for forfeit of their life. Such actions usually involve grave danger to the life or substantive well-being of another or of others.

Thus, in a war, a soldier acting in evil and who is attempting to kill another soldier, can be stopped even if he dies as a result of the process of being stopped - but killing him can never be desired or intended by the one stopping him. Even though the one stopping the evil soldier knows that the death of the soldier acting in evil will result unless God directly intervenes, the one stopping the soldier acting in evil can act. Thus, morally, Sgt. York could shoot the German soldiers who were shooting at his men, because the German soldiers were soldiers acting in evil; they had started the war and were continuing it and were attempting to conquer the world and were attempting to kill Sgt. York’s men; and Sgt. York did not wish to kill the German soldiers but in the course of his protecting his men he shot the German soldiers who were attempting to kill his men and some of the those German soldiers died as a result.

If someone breaks into your home and you shoot the intruder dead in the course of protecting yourself and your family, all things being equal, there is no immorality in your actions. Indeed, to not protect your family when it is in danger and you have the means to protect it, may be sinful. The intruder willfully placed himself in the position of endangering you and your family and of being killed in the course of being repulsed. But if you see the intruder is a five year old child with no weapon and with no ability to harm you or your family, then you can not harm the child. Honest reason must be part of the process by which there is any potential for justification of killing, always remembering God, not you or any other human, is the judge as to the viability of the justification.

An argument could be made that had Adolph Hitler been captured, he could have been executed in accordance with law, because he was jut too dangerous to keep around. His potential for inciting a Nazi uprising was just too great - but remember this is just an argument that could have been made. Weather or not it would have stood the test of God’s judgment is another matter.

An execution of a criminal which definitely does not meet God’s approval is execution of the “regular” criminal - one not of the caliber of an Adolph Hitler. A serial killer, once convicted, can be imprisoned for the rest of his life, forced to work otherwise he will not be given food and will therefore die, and society can be protected from him. There therefore can be no justification for killing him. When one asks about meeting justice to the killer - meeting justice to him in punishment for his killings is exclusively the right of God, and not of man. Man can assess damages against him for his works in an attempt to make his victims as whole as possible, and can imprison him for society’s well-being and protection, but has no right to kill him.

But even if there were no need for moral justification in killing during war, or in protecting one’s self and others against a criminal during the commission of a crime or in punishment for that crime, there is no question that killing another can only be justified as the result of some extreme action on the part of the one being killed.

An unborn child can not commit an action which could be used to justify killing that child.

In Governor Blanco’s approval of abortion in the instance of rape, she may have a weak argument for killing the rapist, but not for killing the child conceived as a result of that rape; for the child did not commit the rape.

But, such arguments proceed, the woman should not be forced to carry the child to term! The child in the womb will be a constant reminder of the rape.

Such arguments are without merit. The rape will be constantly in the mind of the woman no matter what happens. Killing the child will not remove the memory and the horror of the rape, and even if it would, one can not justify killing the child for the child did no wrong. Prior to conception it may have been possible to argue the non-existent child had no right to be in the mother’s womb, but after conception, even in a conception through rape, the child is there, and its moral and legal right to live is greater than any perceived right the mother may have to not have the child in her womb. The same is true of a child conceived in incest.

When Governor Blanco approves of killing an unborn child for the sake of the health of the mother, she uses an emotional argument which is totally without merit and which as been abused to the ultimate extreme. Health of the mother has been stretched to include even the most minor potential for discomfort, which has nothing to do with the mother’s health.

But more important is, there can be no justification for killing the child even if the mother’s death will result from the pregnancy. Situations where the mother will definitely die if the child is not killed are extremely rare, but even in such instances killing the child is not permitted. The child is innocent. You can not kill an innocent. There can never be a justification for killing an innocent.

By way of example, if an evil person has a machine-gun pointed at you, your child, and your spouse, hands you a gun with one bullet in it, and tells you that you must kill either your spouse or your child otherwise he will kill both of them - you can not kill either your spouse or your child. You can not kill one person so that another person can live. If you can shoot the person with the machine-gun, do it; but you can not kill either your spouse or your child even though both will be killed if you do not kill one or the other.

If you can justify killing one person so that another person can live, then you can justify killing someone to harvest their organs and body parts so that the organs and body parts can be used for someone else. And this you can not.

Governor Blanco is therefore a liar when she says she is pro-life. She is a liar when she says she is anti-abortion. In actuality she approves abortion on demand.

God, directly and through His Church, teaches abortion is totally wrong and evil, and that those who approve of them, permit them, and who fail to oppose them, have dead souls. In the Western tradition, they are in a state of mortal sin. This obligation imposed by God and by the Church is greater than any man-based obligation to uphold any man made law, especially and particularly any law as immoral as those permitting abortion.

A government official or employee can not allow man made laws and directives to replace the obligations imposed by God and by the Church, for God, the Creator of all, is superior to man, a creature - and His will and laws take precedence over man’s.

Those who say and those who believe the Church has no place in the bedroom, that what happens once the bedroom door is closed is the occupants’ business, are totally wrong, for the Church, as the agent of God, has place everywhere. If God is not in the bedroom, then you should not be in the bedroom either.

When a person says their religion will have no effect on their function as an elected official, or on their performance in their job or occupation, then they have just excommunicated themselves, for they have made it clear God and God’s will and His laws are secondary to something else. This can not be. God is always superior to anything else. Those who make something else superior to God have severed themselves from God, have placed a false god before God, have worshiped something other than God.

Governor Blanco therefore can not receive Holy Communion until she recants her pro-abortion position, confesses it, and receives absolution for that sin and the sins associated with it. Such recantation usually must be a public recantation as part of an effort to repair the damage done by her murderous public declaration. Until she repents and receives absolution, anyone who knowingly gives Governor Blanco Holy Communion commits in the very least the sin of blasphemy.

When the Roman Catholic Archbishop of New Orleans, Metropolitan Archbishop Alfred Hughes, stated in effect that public officials who do not uphold the Church’s position on abortion, can not receive Holy Communion, it is clear that Governor Blanco was then placed under interdict and made unable to receive Holy Communion. It was also clear that Louisiana Lieutenant Governor Mitch Landrieu, a Roman Catholic who supports the ability of a woman to have an abortion, and his sister, Senator Mary Landrieu, also a Roman Catholic, who also supports the ability of a woman to have an abortion, were banned from receiving Holy Communion.

When told of this, Lt. Governor Landrieu responded in a string of disjointed phrases, to the effect that the opinions of others had to be considered and that the Church could not impose this and that the Church could not keep him from receiving Holy Communion.

Lt. Governor Landrieu is grievously mistaken, for God consults with no one. He does not establish truth, His will, and His laws, by committee.

As is with Governor Blanco, Lt. Governor Landrieu therefore can not receive Holy Communion until he recants his pro-abortion position, confesses it, and receives absolution for that sin and the sins associated with it. Such recantation usually must be a public recantation as part of an effort to repair the damage done by his murderous public declarations. Such is also true for his sister, Senator Mary Landrieu.

New Orleans Metropolitan Archbishop Alfred Hughes is to be praised and commended for his actions, for they constitute one of the first public upholding of God’s will by a Roman Catholic Bishop, in specific application to United States of America government officialdom, as regards abortion.

The situation of Senator Edward Kennedy is useful in showing the extent to which being pro-abortion severs one from the Body of Christ. For many years Senator Kennedy, a Roman Catholic, has supported a woman’s ability to have an abortion; a position he maintains to this day. He therefore is pro-abortion, a position not surprising considering the Chappadiquic - Mary Jo Copechne matter.

Because of his pro-abortion position, Senator Kennedy should have been refused Holy Communion for many years. Apparently he has not been refused Holy Communion, and for this the Priests involved are in gross error and their souls in grave jeopardy. As a result of his pro-abortion position and his continual support of abortion, Senator Kennedy has been in a state of severe sin and has been severed from the Body of Christ and morally unable to receive the Sacraments, except that he may receive the Sacrament of Absolution as stated above.

A few years ago Senator Kennedy divorced his wife of many years, Joan. Then he contracted a legal marriage (a marriage outside of the Church) with another woman. Later, he obtained an Roman Catholic Church annulment of his marriage to Joan, and, we understand, was married in the Roman Catholic Church - all while remaining pro-abortion.

In the Orthodox Catholic Churches, the Sacrament of Matrimony is administered and imposed by the Priest, but in the Roman Catholic Church, the Sacrament of Matrimony is administered and imposed by the husband and the wife. If Senator Kennedy had been married to his second wife in the Orthodox Church, he would have received the Sacrament of Matrimony blasphemously, but since the ceremony was performed in the Roman Catholic Church, the Senator’s inability to receive any Sacrament except that of Absolution means that he is not married in the Church no matter what anyone may say or believe.

We must note that it is possible for a person in good conscience to believe that abortion is permitted under some circumstances and that when such person holds such belief after serious study and contemplation there is no sin. But this is only a possibility and it is a possibility which is virtually impossible to attain given the explicit teaching of God the Father in the Old Testament, and the teachings of the Church, particularly from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries onward. Even were a person to hold such a position without sin, the holding of that position is without sin only if the position is privately held. Once the pro-abortion position is made public, it publicly contradicts the law of God and the teaching of the Church, and the person is without question and without doubt severed from the Body of Christ - for what part of “woe to those who give scandal” is incomprehensible.

A great public debate followed the proclamation by Metropolitan Archbishop Hughes, as to whether or not Governor Blanco and the others had the right to receive Holy Communion. Radio and television stations even took polls regarding the matter. The attitude evidenced by this debate, and by the taking of and participating in polls, are evidence of the ignorance of the populace as to the functioning of God and as to the establishment of morality. It matters not what one or a million people wish, believe, or think, regarding any matter of God given morality, for God not only is not subject to man’s control or influence, but actually is offended by any and all who attempt to change His decrees of morality. Because He is perfect, and because perfection does not change, God does not change, nor does what He has decreed to be moral or immoral.

God has spoken and said abortion is never permitted. He has spoken and said those who are not with Him are against Him. He has spoken through the Church in specifics, and has said not only are those who are pro-choice not permitted to receive Holy Communion, but that those who are not totally opposed to abortion can not receive Holy Communion, for they are against Him.

And no amount of discussion, and no amount of debate, will change these truths.

It can not be stated than any of these people will go to hell, for that judgment is reserved to Jesus Christ. But it can stated these people are in grave jeopardy of going to hell.

+

return to contents

WE MUST BE UNIFIED IN CHRIST AS A CHOIR IS UNIFIED IN SONG

All members of a choir must sing in unity, in harmony, in concert. If just one member of a choir sings in discord, while the song of the remainder of the choir retains its beauty, the one singing in discord effects those nearest him, and in the total, the song is not as pleasing to the ear as it would be were the one in discord to conform to the song and music as written.

Sometimes the one in discord is tone deaf, or can not carry the melody, or does not know the melody, or believes his melody is better than the one of the rest of the choir, or believes the melody being sung by the rest of the choir is wrong and that his melody is correct, or just likes his melody better. What ever the reason, the one in discord is the one who makes the song unpleasant, and not the remainder of the choir.

But the one in discord can become part of the choir if he but focuses on the attempt.

If he is tone deaf, he can hum, or even take his cue from another and blend his voice and sounds as occasion permits. If he does not know the melody he can learn it, and in the very least song those portions which he knows. To accomplish this he must of need follow the instruction of the choir master.

If he believes his melody is better than the one being sung, he must remember that the melody was written by God, and that he has not the ability to write either melody or words better than the author. If he believes the choir master is leading the choir incorrectly, he must look to the training of the choir master, and realize and accept the simple fact that the choir master, the Bishop, was appointed by God to lead the choir. Where the choir follows the choir master, there is song, but where the choir does not follow the choir master, there is heresy, and the choir master must assist the choir members to sing the song as written by God.

But the choir master must also remember that he is not the author of either the song or the melody.

If he and other choir masters remember this, then, when separate choirs join in song, they all sing the same words to the same melody, under the direction of the Great Choir Master who is God.

The strings of a guitar or a violin or a piano vibrate when caressed or struck. To make music they must be tuned by the musician. Without the harp or frame within which the strings rest and to which they are attached, they can make no sound, but when they are properly attached and brought into proper note, they are capable of great beauty.

So too must the worship of God be by the entire instrument, the entire choir, the entire orchestra, each properly contributing to the whole.

+++

return to contents

MODERNISM, MODERNISTIC PRECEPTS, AND OTHER THOUGHTS PROMPTED BY
A DISTANT MIRROR, by Barbara W. Tuchmann, Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 1997
(Prompted by, but not necessarily held by, promoted by, or even desired by, just prompted by.)

To be happy, and attain eternal happiness, one must possess the insistent principle that the preservation of one’s spirit, that spiritual life, and that life hereafter, eternity, is superior to and more important than the here and now, to our Earthly, temporal, material life. It must include the intrinsic value of the individual, should be as active as possible, and must of needs be focused on God. In a multitude of ways the world of today possesses much of these, and flits to and frow to the others, but has neglected the focus on God.

Focus on God does not preclude concern over everyday matters. After all, God created each of us, and wants us each to be happy in this world as well as in the next world. It is good and proper for us to bathe, clean our teeth, go to work, eat, read, relax, and enjoy what we can, raise our children, change diapers and find out everything we can about the person whom our child is dating. It is normal to love your spouse and to express that love physically, emotionally, mentally, but also spiritually.

Though the modern world acts as though this is impossible, it is and always has been and will always be possible to live life in the here and now, and also focus on God and the hereafter. Indeed, if the hereafter is to be worthwhile, it is mandatory that one live in the here and now with focus on God and the hereafter; for how one handles the here and now is outcome determinative for the hereafter.

+

return to contents

THE AWESOME RESPONSIBILITY OF ANY AUTHORITY
And Total Inability to Avoid Responsibility
Imagine a home or work-place without Charity and Wisdom

And I will give to thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven. And whatsoever thou shalt bind upon earth, it shall be bound also in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth, it shall be loosed also in heaven. (Mat 16:19.) This is an awesome and fear invoking responsibility which the Holy Spirit, as the Spirit of Wisdom, lead Saint Peter to exercise only in consultation with the Elders of the Church, with the Apostles and early Disciples of Our Saviour. And thus was established the power of the Church to determine and thereafter proclaim dogma only in a true and full Ecumenical or Great Council of the Church.

Each one of also us exercises authority every day, even if it extends only to ourselves. Even if we are imprisoned in jail or in a body which does not function, we exercise some form of authority over ourselves; and most of us exercise authority to some degree over others as well even though it be only by means of influence rather than the ability to demand others follow our orders and instructions.

Our individual free will makes each of us unable to avoid responsibility for the authority we exercise, for we are responsible for proper exercise of our own free will. Though we may attempt to instill another with the right, power, and authority to exercise our free will for us, by Divine design we retain our own free will, the responsibility for proper exercise of our free will, and the authority over our own free will.

Occasionally one may have the thought that it would be nice if God were to remove free will in-so-far as sinning is concerned, for then it would be easy to be good. But there is no reward which accompanies lack of free will, for we are rewarded in eternity in accordance with the application of the exercise of our free will. To remove free will would be to place us at the level of animals, and animals do what instinct dictates - no more, and no less.

A thoughtful person will soon realize we need assistance in exercising authority whether it be over ourselves or over others. As in all matters, God has provided us with the ability to obtain assistance, and this assistance begins with Charity, with Divine Love, in conjunction with Wisdom.

Charity and Wisdom flow from God like water from a spring which we can not deplete. It is a spring to which we can continually return to quench our spiritually life sustaining need for Charity and Wisdom. Not a need for spiritually sustaining Charity and Wisdom, but life sustaining need for Charity and Wisdom.

It is only with Charity and Wisdom that we have even the most remote possibility of properly exercising authority. Without Charity and Wisdom, the leaders amongst us are no better than the alpha male or the matriarch of a herd or pack - whose main concern is to satisfy their natural drives and to protect and preserve their status and all that is associated with that status. Only as a by-product of this does any good result for the herd or pack.

But Charity and Wisdom instill one with a concern for others, and with a more farsighted concern for one’s self. This concern is not the natural concern that an insect such as an ant or honey bee has for the hive, for that concern is part of the nature of those particular insects. The concern which Charity and Wisdom instill in us is voluntary - we can either accept it or reject it, act on it or ignore it, all because of free will which is so integral to authority and the proper or improper exercise of authority.

Now, imagine a home, work place, government, school, Church, teacher, police officer, physician, clergyman, mother, or father, who has no or little Divine Love, no or little Wisdom. This is not difficult, for an uncountable multitude of people live in such unholy environments at least for a part of each day.

A person or place that is without Charity and Wisdom is a person or place without goodness - it may not be overtly evil, but it is without goodness and thus is inclined to evil, nastiness, belittling, and using of people.

God is the only provider of Charity and of Wisdom, and without these there can be no happiness.

Remember that where God is not welcome, where God is not, there is no happiness. But where God is welcome, where God is, even though the physical situation may be unbearable, there is happiness.

Ref: 1 Peter 1:1-7; Mat. 16:13-19

+

It is good to pray that the souls of abortionists will receive Christ and that they will cease, repent, and oppose this evil.

return to contents

PERSONAL, SELF-GLORIFICATION ARE IMMOBILIZING THE CHURCH
It Must Be Reunified

The seeking of temporal power, position, glory and esteem of one’s self, status, and position, and the keeping, maintaining, and exercising of these, have resulted in an intolerable disruption of the ability of the Church to function as fully and completely as it otherwise could and would. The Church therefore has actually lost ground to heretics to the True Faith, and to those who do not believe in Christ’s teachings, and has not yet converted the world to Christ - which is something it should have done long, long ago.

The Feast of Saint Peter’s Chair exemplifies this gross unholiness which pervades all parts of The Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church - East and West, Orthodox and Roman. Saint Peter’s chair or See or seat of authority was at Antioch. He was the Bishop and Patriarch of Antioch. He went to Rome, where Saint Paul was Bishop and Patriarch. And it was in Rome where both Saints Peter and Paul were martyred. When the Apostles went one into the other’s geographic areas, they did not compete, nor did they argue or even think of who was in authority in that place. They simply worked together.

But after the death of the Apostles, and the with the establishment of the Church in a position where the potential for torture and death no-longer were a significant part of one’s being a Christian, various persons in positions of authority within the Church sought to enhance their positions and to annex temporal authority to their spiritual authority.

Eventually the Church authorities in the City of Rome decided Saint Peter was Patriarch and Bishop of Rome, apparently because he was martyred in Rome - and despite the fact there is absolutely no indication what-so-ever that Saint Peter considered himself to be Bishop and Patriarch of the City of Rome.

What followed in its natural progression was the Great Schism of 1054 A.D., wherein the Roman Catholic Church and the Orthodox Catholic Churches stopped participating in common, joint, and cooperative governance of confirmation of dogma, of teaching, conversions to the Faith, of the practice of Church rituals, and of the actual course of the Church. The sacking of Constantinople by the Roman Catholic Crusaders and the accompanying desecration of the Orthodox Churches, and of the Sacred Eucharist, and rape of Orthodox Priest’s wives and daughters, and the emasculation and tortured murder of Orthodox Priests and Clergy and their sons, established Orthodox Catholic mistrust of, and disgust and aversion for, anything even resembling Roman Catholicism.

Today, Orthodox Catholics mainly refuse to even contemplate new insights into Dogma even when these insights are revealed by the Blessed Theotokos or by Our Saviour Himself. And Rome, in its arrogance and because it refuses the participation or even influence of Orthodox Catholics, has destroyed its beautiful traditions and Gregorian Divine Liturgy, and in their place has established Rogerian Psychology, situational ethics, laxity in Clerical and Lay obligations and practices, a Protestant perspective which is heretical, and a loss of laity which is unprecedented.

Often accompanying these are meanness of spirit by Orthodox towards Romans, and a demeaning air of Gnostic superiority by Roman clergy towards Orthodox clergy as though Orthodox clergy were just playing at being Priests, and a virtual lack of knowledge of Orthodoxy by American and Western European Romans.

By refusing to entertain anything Roman, Orthodoxy has stagnated into ethnic enclaves which fail to proselytize and to grow, and which loose their young to the evangelical materialists. By attempting to make being Catholic easier and not so much of a task or burden, Rome has lost credibility and the ability to positively influence the world, and likewise is losing its young to the evangelical materialists.

And because all Orthodox and Romans and all of the East and West are not only not in Communion but have also not participated in a Full, True, Ecumenical, Great Councils of the Church for over one thousand years, billions of pagans have not become members of the Body of Christ and hundreds of millions of persons have joined nominal Christian sects which teach heresy and which either are not part of the Body of Christ or are only nominally part of he Body of Christ.

The attitude of “My miter is bigger than your miter” has brought the Church to the eve of harsh and direct Divine intervention by Our Saviour Himself. If we do not achieve full communion within the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church, a common day for Pascha, true Ecumenical Council, true mutual respect amongst all Jurisdictions of the Church, and a real character which practices as fact, that those of greater authority are servants of and menial to those over whom they have authority - if these are not soon achieved then they will be imposed by Christ through measures so severe that the harshness of the times of the Martyrs and Fathers of the Church will be preferable.

+

return to contents

AN INSIGHT TO THE VIEWS OF RUSSIAN PATRIARCH ALEXI II REGARDING RELATIONS WITH
THE ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH

The views of the Patriarch of the largest Orthodox Church (Jurisdiction) regarding relations with the Roman Catholic Church obviously are important since they must of needs effect any such relationship.

The following excerpt from "Famiglia Cristiana" Magazine (Communications Service of OVTS, Moscow Patriarchate, 11 April 2001), provides a summary of those views and opinions.

Question: What do you think of the relations between the Russian Orthodox church and the Roman Catholic church?

Answer: These relations can and should be much better than they now are. The modern world needs as never before a joint witness to Christ. Thus the relations between churches, despite all differences between them, should constitute a constructive and fraternal dialogue and cooperation on Christ's field and not competition and contest. I would very much wish that Russia and the entire space of the CIS were a field for cooperation, where each confession would nurture its own tradition, historically developed flock, and not strive for converting to their own confession people who had been wrested from the faith of their fathers by the atheist regime.

Question: From your point of view what should be done so that relations between the Russian Orthodox and Roman Catholic churches would really be improved?

Answer: It is necessary to resolve finally two problems about which we have always had to speak when the issue of the relations between our churches has come up: the situations of the conflict between Orthodox and Greek Catholics in western Ukraine and Catholic proselytism on the canonical territory of the Russian Orthodox church.

In the first case it is necessary, again, that both sides' interest be respected and not only those of one side, the Greek Catholics as it happens in this case. Only under such conditions will genuinely peaceful relations between the two confessions be possible in this region, and not just their appearance.

With regard to the problem of Catholic proselytism in Russia and other CIS countries, whose Orthodox population is nurtured by our church, the only concrete resolution can be a cessation of evangelistic activity by Catholic structures with regard to people who never traditionally belonged to the Catholic church. I want to say right away that we are not opposed to a Catholic presence in Russia and in the rest of the commonwealth in general, for these enormous territories encompass a multitude of peoples, cultures, and traditions. But this presence should correspond to the real pastoral needs and not count on an expansion of the flock by means of a mission among the neighboring population. We always speak of this because, as a rule, evangelistic activity by Catholic structures is aimed specifically at the traditionally Orthodox population which in the years of state atheism was torn from its roots. In such a complex matter as evangelism, I am deeply convinced that we must reject an unbrotherly competitive approach and support relations of openness, honest, mutual trust, and respect for the traditional spheres of pastoral responsibility among ourselves.

+

return to contents

AN ASSORTMENT OF VIEWS ON
RE-ESTABLISHING A COMMON DATE FOR PASCHA

When all of The Church was in communion, a common date for Pascha was established by the First Council of Nicea. As a result of the Great Schism of 1054, and of the Roman Catholic Church’s change from use of the Julian calendar to the Gregorian calendar, Roman Catholics changed the date upon which they celebrate Pascha, while the Orthodox Churches continue to use the date as established by the Council of Nicea.

Every few years, including this, the year 2004 A. D., Orthodox Pascha and Roman Easter are celebrated on the same date.

Below are comments and suggestions regarding this deplorable situation, from a summary published by the WCC in the year 2001 A.D..

Praying and working toward the common date of Easter: bringing us closer to the imperative of Christian unity

H. E. Metropolitan Bishop of Damiette
Coptic Orthodox Church

At the dawn of the third millennium of the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ, in this year 2001 A.D., all Christian traditions - Oriental and Eastern Orthodox, Roman Catholic, and Protestant - will celebrate Easter at the same time.

Since Jesus Christ is the way, truth and life, He is the core of the unity of the Church.

It came to happen in the fourth century A.D. that the Churches were praying and working toward a common date of Easter. At the same time divisions occurred because of different views towards the divinity of the Lord Jesus Christ and His consubstantiality with the Father. At this very crucial stage the Nicene Creed was established at the first ecumenical council confessing that Jesus Christ is homo-ousion with the Father, i.e., of the same essence with the Father, consubstantial and co-eternal with Him. And it was at this Council of Nicea that both a common Christian creed and a common date of Easter were determined. The Church of Alexandria was mandated to determine the common date of Easter every year on agreed bases and to inform all the Churches worldwide.

Historically as well as theologically we can state that the person of the incarnate Word of God is the cause of the unity of the Church. The risen Lord is always a source of inspiration and renewal in our lives.

When our Saviour approached his passions, He said to His disciples: "The hour is coming, indeed it has come when you will be scattered, each one to his home, and you will leave me alone. Yet I am not alone, because the Father is with me" (John 16:32). "So you have pain now; but I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy from you." (John 16:22).

The scattered disciples were united again around the risen Lord on the day of Easter, when he appeared to them as is written, "When it was evening on that day, the first day of the week, and the doors of the house where the disciples had met were locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, "Peace be with you. After he said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord" (John 20:19-20).

It is clear that the resurrection of the Lord wrought a radical change in the life of His disciples. The risen Lord is the source of power, joy, peace and unity of the Church. All we need is to be united with Him in the holy life of victory against sin.

All we need is to forget ourselves and see the risen Lord, who shines with His divine glory and enlightens our thoughts and our hearts.

All we need is to accept His divine love in order to love one another, and be united in Him.

It is the life of sanctification that will bring all of us together, so that we may rejoice and confess together the one holy and apostolic faith.

Celebrating together Redemption in Christ: Catholic hopes for a common date of Easter

Monsignor John A. Radano
Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity

In 2001 unlike most years, Christians of East and West celebrate Easter on the same date. Sadly, this is an exception, reminding us that Christians are divided on many issues, even on the date for celebrating this central Christian mystery.

Christians have struggled from early times with the question of establishing a common date for celebrating Easter. The issue was addressed again in the twentieth century, and especially during the last three decades. Christian hopes for a common date are motivated primarily by theological concerns. A common date, said a World Council of Churches (WCC) consultation in 1970, "would ... remove an obstacle which obscures the unity of Christians and it would provide a new framework for common witness to the Risen Lord" (The Ecumenical Review, April, 1971, 177).

Particularly since the Second Vatican Council the Catholic Church has expressed deep interest in establishing a common date for Easter. The Council encouraged seeking a fixed date if there was ecumenical agreement to do so (cf. Appendix to Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, 1963). Until that could be achieved, the Decree on Eastern Catholic Churches, as an interim approach, authorized Patriarchs or authorities of a given place to seek unanimous agreement, after ascertaining the views of all concerned, on a single Sunday for observing Easter.

After Vatican II, this hope was raised in correspondence between Pope Paul VI and the Ecumenical Patriarchate, and in the Joint Working Group between the Catholic Church and the WCC. The Pope's letter to the Ecumenical Patriarch Dimitrios I (March 26, 1975) indicates the evangelical purpose of seeking a common date:

The world in which we live has perhaps a greater need than ever that we should testify ... to our faith in the Resurrection of Jesus Christ, Our Lord. Moreover, his Resurrection is the foundation of our faith - this faith that is called in question by many. Did not St Paul write that if Christ be not risen our faith is vain (1 Cor 15:14)? Moved by this conviction, and trusting in the power of the Risen Christ and his Spirit, we express our hope that by celebrating the mystery of mysteries with a single heart and voice, we may be able to render glory to God, the Father of Our Lord Jesus Christ, who raised Him from the dead (Rom 16:6; Col 2:12).

A specific proposal was made in an ecumenically sensitive way in 1975 by the Catholic Church in coordination with the WCC. On behalf of the Pope Paul VI, Cardinal Willebrands, president of the Secretariat (since 1988 Pontifical Council) for Promoting Christian Unity, proposed in a letter to Patriarch Dimitrios I (18 May 1975) and other Orthodox leaders, with letters of similar contents sent to WCC general secretary Dr Philip Potter and to leaders of world confessional bodies, that from 1977 (a year in which all Christians would celebrate Easter on the same day) onwards, "Easter should always be celebrated on the Sunday following the second Saturday of April". As part of its preparation for its 1975 assembly in Nairobi, the WCC was also surveying its member churches on the same question. As a result of its survey the WCC concluded that "at this stage, a specific proposal would not lead to a date uniting all Christians in the celebration of Easter on the same day". It therefore became clear that it was not possible to go further on the proposal at this point. Since the Catholic Church did not want to take a decision that would create another obstacle to unity, its plan was not put into effect.

Another proposal for seeking a common date for celebrating Easter has emerged as a result of a consultation co-sponsored by the World Council for Churches and the Middle East Council of Churches in Aleppo, Syria in 1997. The Aleppo plan proposes a common, though movable, date for Easter, different from the fixed date suggested in 1975. Edward Cardinal Cassidy, then president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, expressed in 1997 his support for studying this proposal, and gave an initial affirmative reaction to it.

Like Paul VI, Pope John Paul II expressed support for a common date of Easter. John Paul II's witness to the Gospel highlights Redemption in Christ, as reflected in some of his encyclical titles: Redemptoris hominis (1979), Redemptoris Mater (1987), and Redemptoris Missio (1990). For him celebrating the Redemption has implications for ecumenism, because "we go beyond historical misunderstandings and contingent controversies, in order to meet each other on the common ground of our being Christian, that is Redeemed. The Redemption unites all of us in the one love of Christ, crucified and risen." (December 23, 1982)

The Pope has tried to foster common witness to the redemptive mysteries of Christ, crucified and risen. Thus, since 1994, John Paul has invited Orthodox or Protestant leaders on several occasions, to write the meditations for the Way of the Cross which he leads on Good Friday each year at the Roman Colosseum. Recently, noting that in 2001 all Christians celebrate Christ's resurrection on the same date, he expressed the hope that "this should encourage us to reach agreement on a common date for this feast." (Homily, January 25, 2001)

Celebrating Easter on the same date in 2001, is a grace. It is the hope of the Catholic Church that Christians find a way to do this annually. May we, his disciples, use this opportunity of contemplating the Resurrection of the Redeemer together this year to beg his forgiveness and mercy for our separation, and to entreat his help in taking steps towards the unity for which he prayed (Cf. Jn 17:21).

The gift of a common calendar - vital to mission and witness in secular society

Metropolitan Ambrosius of Oulu
Orthodox Church of Finland

It is God's great gift for us all in different Christian traditions to be allowed to celebrate the Feast of the Resurrection of our Lord together at the beginning of the third Christian Millennium.

In my own country the Orthodox and Lutherans have experienced the power of the Resurrection on a common date of Easter since the early 1920s. At that time the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople granted the Orthodox Church of Finland temporary permission to follow the Gregorian calendar.

This has been a great blessing for our small minority church in a Protestant country. We have been able to bear common witness to the Mystery of the Resurrection. It makes us stronger. We share the profound richness of both Eastern and Western theological and spiritual insights concerning Easter in our national religious heritage.

The Eastern Orthodox liturgical celebration of Easter Matins and Liturgy, starting at midnight, is broadcast on the National Radio and Television. In fact it is the most popular religious programme in Finland during the whole year.

It is also very much visible in other mass media. National newspapers publish cover stories about and interviews of the Orthodox, who are active in national culture, and how they personally celebrate Easter and what it means to them. Even traditional Orthodox recipes for preparing special Easter food are published extensively.

These are minor examples of the ways in which the Eastern Orthodox minority, one percent of the population, has been able to bring its positive contribution to the Finnish national religious culture.

Perhaps more deeply than ever we, Orthodox and Protestant together, have learned to understand how through two feasts, Good Friday and Easter, the power of the saving and life-giving cross and the glorious resurrection of Christ can't be separated. An Orthodox hymn, already at the vespers of Good Friday - the time of suffering and death, appropriately radiates the light of resurrection: "We magnify your sufferings o Christ...show us also your glorious resurrection."

In my country we are glad to know that within the ecumenical movement extensive pursuits are being made and prayers offered towards a common calendar. We are also aware of inter-Orthodox tensions concerning this issue.

Through our experience in Finland we see the gift of a common calendar as vital to our mission and witness in a secular society. Particularly as a minority culture the Orthodox can't afford to become a religious ghetto. We have to play our role, to live out our vocation in the centre of our national common life.

A common calendar for all Christians is crucial to our everyday life throughout the church year. All children, regardless of their faith or denomination, go to the same schools. Major Christian feasts are holidays for all Finns. The special value of our "Finnish calendar" is experienced particularly in family life, because most Orthodox live in mixed marriages.

It is a gift of the Spirit that the most traditional Eastern Orthodox Hymn of Resurrection will be sung together with our Lutheran sisters and brothers, since it has recently been added to the Finnish Lutheran hymnal: Christ has risen from the dead, by death he has trampled on death and to those in the graves given life.

+

return to contents

FASTING, ABSTINENCE, AND THEIR PURPOSE

Great Lent is a time for preparation for the joy of Pascha; a time of anticipation of the Resurrection of Our Saviour which is the event which proved the truth of all that Christ taught.

We have the example of Our Saviour Himself as to how to prepare for this great feast, for just as Our Lord fasted for forty days and nights, so too do we fast and abstain for the forty days and nights of Great Lent.

Different parts of the Church fast and abstain according to different traditions during Great Lent, but all traditions bear a close resemblance to each other, and follow a similar form or continuity.

In our tradition, children, the elderly, and the infirm, are exempt from fasting and abstinence. All others should abstain from meat on Wednesdays and on Fridays. During each week, from Monday through and including Saturday, one should fast so that if one has one main meal and two small meals, the two smaller meals combined do not equal the main meal. As an example, if the main meal weighs one pound, which is sixteen ounces, then the two smaller meals combined should weigh no more than fifteen ounces. Of course this sixteen ounces example is not the limit itself, for if one were to eat soup as a main meal, it may weigh more than a main meal composed of chicken and salad. It is only an example.

One should not fast and abstain on Sundays, for every Sunday is a celebration of Pascha, of Easter, of the Sacrifice of the Cross and of the Last Supper and of the Resurrection of Our Lord.

The purpose of fasting and abstinence is to curb the body and our natural, physical inclinations, so that our spirit and soul can become predominant. Fasting actually serves to lessen our animalistic inclinations. As an example, one who eats meat or who otherwise sustains one’s food appetites becomes more inclined to indulge in other physical appetites, such as sexual gratification. Therefore, one who fasts can more easily curb these other natural, physical appetites.

Many people give up something for Great Lent. One tradition is to give up candy or sweets, and this is good for the same reason fasting is good. Other people do something good during Great Lent, which they normally do not do, such as attend Divine Liturgy during the week if it is available, or attend the Stations of the Cross if available - or even pray the Stations of the Cross themselves if it is not part of a liturgical function at their local Church.

These are good practices during Great Lent, and if we can continue them after Great Lent, then we will have the spiritual advantage of maintaining a form of spiritual training which will benefit us for life.

This actually is not difficult. All of us have some natural inclinations towards at least some of the Corporal Works of Mercy, the Beatitudes, and the Virtues. If during Great Lent we practice those for which we have a natural inclination, we can train ourselves to make them part of our every day lives, and thus continue practicing them after Great Lent.

If after Great Lent is over we maintain abstinence from meat on Wednesdays and Fridays, and fasting on Fridays if possible, and even on Wednesdays if possible, then we will begin to build in a system of self restraint of our physical inclinations and desires.

We must always remember to make prayer an integral part of Great Lent. A spiritual life without prayer means one’s spirit is dead. For most people, the Stations of the Cross and week-day Divine Liturgy will be of great assistance in formulating a good daily prayer life - but one must willingly participate in these Liturgies, rather than participate in them out of a sense of duty or obligation. The prayers in these Liturgies are extremely meaningful and very beautiful, as well as thought provoking. They can be of great assistance in teaching one to talk with God, with each Person of the Blessed Trinity, and to listen to God as He talks with us in the subtle and overt ways in which He constantly communicates with each of us.

If we approach Great Lent realistically, we can make it be not just a liturgical season, not just a time during which we fulfill different obligations, not just a time during which we replace bad habits with good habits, but a time during which we train ourselves to be and actually become better followers of Christ for all the rest of our lives.

Ref: 2 Cor 6:1-10; Mat. 4:1-11

+







LETTERS

(The Editors reserve the right to reject any submissions, and to edit as necessary. Letters must be typed, single space, signed, and include the sender's name address, and day and evening telephone numbers - If your typed letter is acompanied by an ASCII DOS Text copy on a floppy, we will thank you with extra prayers - Ed.)

WORLD WIDE WEB:

The direct connection to computer which functions as the message, file, and communications center for The Society of Clerks Secular of Saint Basil, is:

http://www.reu.org

Issues of REUNION, in color, in Adobe PDF and HTML, are available at:

http://www.reu.org/public/news.htm



Dial-up WWW acess: Basilian Clergy and Parishioners have free access to the WWW (keep it clean or you will be locked-out) using WinServer Navigator (WildCat Navigator) through the Basilian central communications system at Holy Innocents Orthodox Church BBS (504) 738-2681.

On Line Chat Room: at the main web site log-in http://www.reu.org
You have to register with the system before you can use it, and it is best to send e-mail to set a “chat schedule”.

+

PUBLICATION NOTICE

REUNION is a religious publication with offices at the address given below. Circulation is approximately . All contents are copyright ©, March 10, 2004 A.D. , REUNION, unless separately copyrighted, and may be reproduced without permission provided credit is given. All by-lined articles may be used by the author without permission at any time. Literary contributions are welcome; no fee will be paid for same; editorial control will be maintained by REUNION. All submissions for publication are made subject to these provisions, and must bear the name, address, telephone number, and signature of the contributor.
The sole purpose of this publication is to comply with the teachings and instructions of Jesus Christ, second person of the Trinity God, and to further His kingdom.


*** SUBSCRIPTIONS: REUNION is published in both print and electronic (computer/BBS) format. Publication dates are irregular. It is available free for downloading from REUNION NETWORK (see information below), or by e-mail mailing list subscription (which is free) to REU_PUB@REU.ORG with the message SUBSCRIBE REU_PUB YOUR NAME. Just because an issue is published in REUNION BBS does not mean it will be print published also. Print publication distribution is to (in order of prefernce): financially contributing parishioners of Holy Innocents Orthodox Church (Harahan / New Orleans) or of St. Mary Magdalene Orthodox Church (Waveland, Miss.); publication swaps; those who pick up a copy and those who request a "free" subscription (if any are left); **** those who make a donation of $30.00 (or more) to Holy Innocents Orthodox Church will be mailed each print published issue of REUNION for one calendar year from the date the donation is received. A donation does not create an obligation for us to publish.
We try to publish between four and twelve issues per year, and to print publish each electronically published issue, but do not guarantee to do so due to staffing and finances.
Telephones / electronic addresses:
Holy Innocents (504) 738-3502;
311 Hickory Avenue
Harahan, Louisiana 70123 USA
FAX C/O (504) 737-7707 (9-5 M-F)
abp@reu.org
BBS (504) 738-2681
http://www.reu.org

Changes regarding receipt of REUNION, including cancellation, should be noted on the form opposite and sent in with your address label.

+ Paul, S.S.B.
Publisher .


+ The Basilians - The Basilian Fathers +

If you wish to receive REUNION please see **** above,
and fill in your name and address below and send to:
REUNION
Holy Innocents Orthodox Church
311 Hickory Avenue
Harahan, Louisiana 70123

Name_________________________

Address______________________

City_________________________

State_________ Zip____________




return to contents



S.S.B. NEWS
THE BASILIAN
FATHERS
(The Society of Clerks Secular of Saint Basil)

SAINT JOSEPH SEMINARY

http://www.reu.org/public/guatemal/guatem1.htm


(Donations should sent to:)
The Basilian Fathers
Most Rev. Andres Giron, S.S.B.
Parcela # B 105, Calle del Banco
Nueva Concepcion, Escuintla
Guatemala CA

Archbishop Andres has established a Seminary, regular schools, convents, and in 1998-99 alone, created between 800 and 1,000 family farms which support the extended family.

The family farms Archbishop Andres created are not "share cropper" farms - Archbishop Andres fully turned each farm over to the people who live on them.

You never have to wonder if your charitable donations are being properly used. You can SEE their use.

Archbishop Andres has been the one of the leaders of those who seek moral treatment of the Mayan People in Guatemala, even leading a march seeking promise the Mayans will no longer be killed at whim. For this Guatemalans call him "The Martin Luther King of Guatemala".





Your assistance is desperately needed for these good works to continue.

+

SAINT BASIL

Archpriest James has been the leader of all the religious communities in Melburn, in providing food and the necessities of life to the poor. He established the first food kitchen, and operates on a "shoe string budget" that should make most Americans ashamed of purchasing an extra order of French fries.

http://www.reu.org/public/austral/astrl.htm

(Donations to assist the work in Australia should bent to:)
Saint Basil Orthodox Church

Very Rev. Fr. James (George Bowles), S.S.B.
P. O. Box 980
Sunbury,Victoria 3429
AUSTRALIA



+



Saint Peter The Alute Orthodox Mission Church

Rev. Fr. Dcn. Peter Angasan
P.O. Box 70123
South Naknek, Alaska 99670-0123

http://www.reu.org/public/stpalute/stpa.htm

+

USA - ILLINOIS

SAINT SEBASTIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH

Rev. Fr. Ronald Louis Montanye, S.S.B.
St. Sebastian Orthodox Church
8712 Indigo La.
Machesney Park, Illinois 61115
(815) 636-8073

+

HOLY INNOCENTS


http://www.reu.org/public/hioc/hioc.htm


(Donations should bent to:)
Holy Innocents Orthodox Church
311 Hickory Ave.
Harahan, Louisiana 70123
Voice (504) 738-3502
FAX (504) 737-7707
HIOC BBS (504) 738-2681

The Church (Chapel) is usually open from 9:00 AM to Noon Sundays, 7:30 AM to 5:00 PM Monday - Friday, as schedules permit, closed Saturdays except for special occasions like weddings. Saturday Vespers are usually at St. Mary Madgalene.

These schedules are kept unless something extraordinary occurs. Last minute notices are posted on the marque by the front door.

REGULAR SUNDAY SCHEDULE:

9:30 AM - 9:45 AM, Confessions
9:45 AM Prothesis
10:00 AM Divine Liturgy (Mass)
Western Rite
11:00 AM - Noon, Coffee - Fellowship Hour
All who have been Baptized and Chrismated (Confirmed) are encouraged to receive The Eucharist (Holy Communion).

WEEKDAY DIVINE LITURGY:

Weekday Divine Liturgy is at 8:00 AM. Some days we do not have weekday Divine Liturgy due to scheduling problems. Check the Bulletin

When we have weekday Divine Liturgy, Confessions are available immediately before Divine Liturgy, from 7:30 AM - 7:45 AM.

There is no socializing after weekday Divine Liturgy. Social telephone calls should be limited to between 6:30 PM and 8:30 PM.

BULLETIN COPIES:

Copies of Holy Innocents weekly parish bulletin can be FAXed to you (local calls only). Just send us a FAX request. You can also obtain a copy on HIOC BBS or at the chapel, or on our web site.

Holy Innocents is a Western Rite Orthodox Church affiliated with The Orthodox Catholic Archdiocese of Louisiana, and the Archdiocese of Orleans, of the Orthodox Catholic Church of the Americas operated by the Basilian Fathers. Its lineage is Russian Orthodox, and Eastern Rite Liturgy is observed in special schedules as an accommodation.

Most Rev. John, S.S.B., (Retired)
Most Rev. Paul, S.S.B., Metropolitan Archbishop of Orleans.

OTHER SACRAMENTS AND LITURGIES

Baptisms and Chrismation (Confirmat-ion) may be scheduled two or more weeks in advance, for children and adults who have never received these Sacraments, and who desire to join the Church.

Reception of Converts, for those who have been Baptized and Confirmed in another Jurisdiction of The Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church, may be scheduled two or more weeks in advance.

Holy Matrimony should be scheduled at least three months in advance, but may be arranged in less time depending on the circumstances. We are not a marriage mill, and will not marry just anyone - interviews are required for those with whom we are not very familiar.

Absolution/Confession, is available from 9:30 AM to 9:45 AM, Sundays, and on request at virtually all times.

Anointing of the Sick (Extreme Unction, Holy Anointing) is available after Sunday Divine Liturgy, and with visitation of the sick, is available on request. Please notify us if you, family, or a friend, become ill, are hospitalized, or desire a visit. You need not be ill to request a visit.

Blessing of a Home is usually done on the Feast of The Epiphany (January 6), or when a family moves into a new home. It should be scheduled a week or so in advance. The house need not be all "in order".

+

ST. MARY MAGDALENE


http://www.reu.org/public/stmm/stmm.htm


(Donations should be sent to:)
St. Mary Magdalene Orthodox Church
125 Hartsie Drive - 150 Angell Lane
Waveland, Mississippi 39576


Voice (228) 466-4508








RETREATS:

Holy Innocents hosts a retreat on the first Saturday of each month, at St. Mary Magdalene. This is an "open" retreat, without the 'rule of silence'. Grounds open at 9 AM, Divine Liturgy is at 11:15 AM, grounds close between 1 PM and 4 PM. Bring your own food, though chicken noodle soup and coffee are provided.

St. Mary Magdalene is primarily a retreat house. Anyone wishing to conduct or participate in a one day retreat for a group or an individual should call either St. Mary Magdalene, Holy Innocents to schedule. We encourage everyone to go on a retreat at least once each year - more often if possible. Talks on various special subjects can be arranged for groups in retreat, and those on private retreat will be left alone as they desire. Overnight retreats are available with "dormitory style" facilities.

Directions: Take I-10 East through Slidell. Cross the Louisiana - Mississippi State line; pass up the truck scales and take the first exit after the truck scales. This is the scenic route to the beaches. (Some people call this the Hwy. 90 exit.) Stay on the highway, pass (and curse) the gambling casino exit until you arrive in Waveland (about 17 miles from I-10). Turn right at the first traffic light, go down the road towards the beach, cross over the rail road tracks and turn left on Central Ave. which is the first road over the rail road tracks. Stay on central until you reach Coleman Ave., which is located at the first stop sign you will come to. Turn right on Coleman and you will see the beach road ahead. Turn right on Beach Road., go two blocks to Hartsie, turn right on Hartsie, travel 550 feet until the bend in the road. St. Mary Magdalene is on the left.

Or, I-10 to Miss Hwy 603 (43), also known as Kiln Rd.., then South on Hwy 603 (43) (Kiln Rd.), cross over U. S. Hwy. 90 [Hwy 603 (43) changes its name to Nicholson Ave.], to the Beach, right on Beach Road, pass Coleman Ave., and proceed as above.

+

return to contents

DIVINE LITURGY "MASS" CARDS

These 4 1/4" by 5 1/2 " (folded) Icon cards feature the above Icons, and open to reveal prayer intentions for the living and for those who have Fallen Asleep in The Lord.







ICON # 4 ICON # 7 ICON # 11 ICON # 19 ICON # 26

For those who have Fallen Asleep in The Lord, Icon # 19 graces the cover, with the following text (reduced here to fit in this column) inside:



General Intentions For the Living, for weddings, illnesses, general need, and for the sake of prayer itself, etc., cards, have Icons nos. 4, 7, 11, and 26. All the Icons are full color printed cards.

The text on the inside of the cards for the living is given above, again reduced here to fit inside the column.





These cards are very beautiful, light gray or bamboo in color, but they are only a product - something to induce you to make a donation which we use to support the various works we provide, including publication of REUNION.

To have a person included in our prayers and at Divine Liturgy, send us a note, or fill out the form in the right column of this page and send it to us. There is no fee for the prayers and Liturgies, that would be Simony.

Like Monasteries which obtain donations for their Icons, or sell Icons and other items, the donations we receive from these cards are of great use to us. Your help is always appreciated.

+

If you wish someone to be included in our payer and Divine Liturgy intentions, please just fill in the form below and send it to us - but do not send any money. Prayers are free, the cards cost money.


Dear Father,
Please include and remember

_____________________________________________ in
the Divine Liturgy and Prayers for the (living - dead) at Holy
Innocents Orthodox Church and its sister and mission places
of worship during the next thirty days, beginning
_____________________, 20_______, on the occasion of
_____________________________________________
_____________________________________________
Requested by (optional)
_____________________________________________
(Name)
_____________________________________________
(Address)
_____________________________________________
(City, State Zip)

Please mail this slip to:
Holy Innocents Orthodox Church
311 Hickory Avenue
Harahan, Louisiana 70123
or telephone (504) 738-3502
[Please note that prayer requests are also normally posted in REUNION BBS in the Prayers mailing list


No charge for Divine Liturgy, just send the slip.

PRAYER CARDS REQUEST FORM

ITEM QUANTITY REQUESTED TOTAL

DONATION

Icon Cards: Each

Icon # 4 _________ $5.00 $____________

Icon #7 _________ $5.00 $____________

Icon #11 _________ $5.00 $____________

Icon #19 (Deceased) _________ $5.00 $____________

Icon #26 _________ $5.00 $____________



PLEASE PRINT ! ! !

REQUEST PLACED BY:

Name__________________________________

Address________________________________

City/State_______________________________

Zip____________

Total $_______________

There are no shipping charges on the prayer cards. Propriety requires the total requested donation amount accompany your products request. Send product request with donation to:

Holy Innocents Orthodox Church
311 Hickory Ave.
Harahan, Louisiana 70123


return to contents


PRODUCTS REQUEST FORM

PLEASE PRINT ! ! ! THIS FORM WILL BE PHOTOCOPIED AND ADHERED TO YOUR SHIPMENT



REQUEST PLACED BY:

Name__________________________________________________

Address________________________________________________

City/State______________________________________________

Zip____________________

Country (if not USA)_____________________________________





SHIP TO (If same as above, please enter "same" on Name line):

Name__________________________________________________

Address________________________________________________

City/State______________________________________________

Zip____________________

Country (if not USA)_____________________________________

Each of these publications is available on our web site for free download. Since you can obtain them free, if you wish to obtain a copy of any of these publications from us, it is obvious that you wish to do so for the purpose of making an donation - which we deeply appreciate.

Propriety requires the total requested donation amount accompany your products request. Send product request with donation in US funds to:


Holy Innocents Orthodox Church
311 Hickory Ave.
Harahan, Louisiana 70123




PUBLICATION NUMBER

DESCRIPTION

AMOUNT EACH *

QUANTITY

$ TOTAL THIS ITEM

CATCSM2.PUB The Orthodox - Basilian Catechism No. 1 $ 15.00 . .
CALENDAR2004.PUB Basilian LITURGICAL CALENDAR FOR THE YEAR 2004 A.D. $ 7.00 . .
CALENDAR.PUB Basilian LITURGICAL CALENDAR $ 7.00 . .
MISSALET.PUB Gregorian Divine Liturgy (Western Rite) Pew Size $ 7.00 . .
REQUIEMMS.PUB Gregorian Western Rite Divine Liturgy for the Dead - Requiem - Pew Size $ 7.00 . .
WEDDINGMS.PUB Gregorian - Western Rite Betrothal Liturgy and the Wedding or Marriage Liturgy combined with the Western Rite Divine Liturgy - Pew size $ 7.00 . .
ORDAINITIONSMS.PUB Rites of Office: Taper-bearer, Setting Apart of Readers, The Manner of Ordination of Sub-deacons And of Deacons (And of Elevation of Archdeacons), And Priests (And of Making Archpriests, Institution of Abbot and Elevation of Archimandrite and Mitered Archpriests), and of Consecrating a Bishop Within the Gregorian Divine Liturgy - as used by the Society of Clerks Secular of Saint Basil, Pew size $ 7.00 . .
DEACONSLITURGYMS.PUB Gregorian - Western Rite Deacon's Liturgy / Liturgy of the Presanctified - Pew size $ 7.00 . .
PALMSUMS.PUB Gregorian Divine Liturgy for the Second Sunday of Passion Time Palm Sunday - Pew size $ 10.00 . .
TRIDUUMMS.PUB The Triduum (Parts One and Two) Liturgies for Holy Thursday and Good Friday Pascha (Easter) Being in a Separate Volume - Pew size $ 10.00 . .
PASCHAMS.PUB THE TRIDUUM (Part Three) LITURGIES FOR PASCHA (EASTER) Including those for Holy Saturday Evening the Liturgies for Holy Thursday and Good Friday being in another volume. - Pew size $ 10.00 . .
BAPTSMMS.PUB The Office of Holy Baptism Including Prayers at the Reception of Catechumens and the Office of Holy Chrismation with Litanies as Used by the Society of Clerks Secular of Saint Basil - Pew size $ 7.00 . .
CH_BI_H5.PUB Child's Bible History - A Bible History for Children $ 7.00 . .
STATIONBENE.PUB Stations of the Cross and Adoration and Benediction of the Blessed Mystery According to the Western Rite of the Holy Eastern Orthodox Church - Pew size $ 5.00 . .
. . . . .
. . . . .
. . . . .
. . . . .
. . . . .
. . . . .
. SUB TOTAL . . .
. SHIPPING & HANDLING (USA) . . .
. . . . .
. TOTAL . . $




SHIPPING & HANDLING (USA) *

Value $ up to $10.00 Add $4.00
Value $10.01 to $25.00 Add $6.00
Value $25.01 to $50.00 Add $8.00
Value $50.01 to $75.00 Add $10.00
Value $75.01 to $100.00 Add $12.00
Value $100.01 to $150.00 Add $16.00


Outside of USA please telephone or
send e-mail or regular mail inquiry.

*Subject to change without notice

return to contents

Current Active Mailing Lists Originating From BasilNet ReuNet HIOC BBS
The Society of Clerks Secular of Saint Basil - The Basilian Fathers

Each ML has its own rules, which are posted in the ML on a regular basis. Abbreviated commands are also in the signature of each ML message sent via e-mail. You must have permission from the appropriate ML administrator to gate a ML.

PRAYERS

Prayer requests operates under a simple premise. When we pray for each other we fulfill a portion of our Christian duty. Prayers for the living and for the dead are allowed and welcome. Those who make prayer requests agree to include the prayer requests of all who make them here. Prayer requests MUST be moral and for moral purposes . . . hopefully morality will not have to be defined at length (i.e.: use common sense).

Participants and subscribers agree to honor the moral prayer requests posted, and to pray for those intentions and persons for at least one week.

BIBLE-DAY

Every day we try to post a Chapter of one of the Books of the Bible on the ML for discussion. This began with Genesis, Chapter 1, and continued to the end of Genesis, and so on to the next Book. Discussion is not limited to the Chapter posted each day. We use the Douay-Rheims translation which, while it sometimes has editorial comments biased against the Orthodox Church, is a basically a good, non political translation.

SERMONS

A place to exchange sermons by Christians. POSTERS must be, and certify they are: male; duly ordained Priests, Deacons, Ministers, or seminarians of, a Christian Church, Jurisdiction, or Religion; that the Creed of the Council of Nicea is the Creed, or expresses the basic dogma, of the Church of which each participant is a member. Rabbi may participate and post. (Us Christians may learn something). ANYONE may RECEIVE the ML.

When you post in this ML you must provide your church/religious affiliation in the post.

STUDIES

The STUDIES ML is a list which studies Orthodoxy and the Theology/Dogma of the Holy Catholic Apostolic Church. We attempt to have the text of what ever book/publication we are using posted in pertinent parts during the discussions. This is a slow moving ML, primarily because most people do not wish to or have the time to or are not inclined to read and study as is required for participation in a ML such as this. However, for those who do, it is well worth the effort.

ONE-BODYThis is a mailing list designed to promote and further reunification of the Holy Orthodox Catholic and Apostolic Church with the Holy Roman Catholic and Apostolic Church and all other Jurisdictions of the Body of Christ; and to bring each and every human being into union with Christ Jesus our Lord. Activity - very light.

REU_PUB

This ML sends REUNION (publication) to its subscribers, without the pictures and graphics which are in the paper publication. The ML does support discussion, and discussions encouraged. Mainly used for those who desire to receive the Newsletter but do not have access to the WWW (each issue is available on-line), those for whom telephone access to the BBS part of the system is not readily available, and those to whom we can not send a free print copy.

If you are already registered to use the message and file center for the Basilian Fathers, you may link to the listserver directly by logging in, selecting SUBSCRIBE MAILING LISTS in the menu and entering your e-mail address for the ML to which you wish to subscribe. If you are not already registered as a "user" you may go to the log-in menu, register, and then use the automatic system.

Or,

You can e-mail commands to the listserver using the addresses and commands below:

BasilNet ReuNet HIOC BBS Listserver E-mail Commands

If you experience problems with the ML or listserver you may contact the system administrator (sysop) via e-mail to Sysop@reu.org

User Commands

subscribe
Subscribe to an email list.

E.G.:
To subscribe to a mailing list, send a message to:
listserver@reu.org
In the message area put:
subscribe studies
subscribe sermons
subscribe prayers
subscribe bible-day
subscribe one-body

unsubscribe
Unsubscribe from an email list.

inactive
Make yourself inactive on the list. This is good for when you leave on vacation, or just don't want any email for a while.

active
Make yourself active on the list again.

get
Request an information file from the server. The list administrator may set up files for you to retrieve that may contain various information. Do not use a file extension.

help
Retreives this information.

info
Retrieves information on email lists hosted by this server

Please note: our e-mail system uses spam filters which are set very strictly, to the extent they even block out entire networks if those networks have a history of sending, relaying, or otherwise being involved in sending spam to our system. Many of the words in our spam filter are sometimes used in non-spam e-mail. If your e-mail is bounced, you may log on to the BBS and contact whomever it is you desire directly in Conference mail area 0 (zero), so we can add your e-mail address to our filter by-pass.

+

return to contents

End Vol. 12 No. 2 REUNION