Sunday reading

Everybody fails

The Importance Of Failure

Everybody fails. Imagine sitting in a classroom and being told at the beginning of the term that everyone in the class will fail. There would probably be a dash to the registrar’s office in order to drop the class. But, imagine again, that dropping the class is not an option. […]

silence-violence

Shaming Silence

The phrase has been quoted frequently: “silence is violence.” It is the demand that some form of political speech or action, expression of opinion, meme-sharing, and the like, is required of every person or they are guilty (or at least complicit) in violence against a racial minority. There are any […]

The Violence of Modernity

The Violence Of Modernity

The calm voice at the helm says, “Make it so…” and with it, the mantra of modernity is invoked. The philosophy that governs our culture is rooted in violence, the ability to make things happen and to control the outcome. It is a deeply factual belief. We can indeed make […]

Clearly

I Can See Clearly Now

God is in charge of the outcome of history. This simple statement is one way of expressing the Christian doctrine of divine Providence. Perhaps an even more profound way would be a statement that affirms “all things work together for good.” However, no matter how this is said, it is […]

bluesgreens

It Is Good To Be Here

A few days ago, after hearing a very distressing bit of social news, I found myself saying, “I don’t want to be here anymore.” It was a voice of despair and sadness. The occasion had been a public altercation in which a stranger spat at a woman. It was the […]

You Might Be A Fundamentalist

I remember once hearing a light-hearted and self-deprecating bit of comedy from a country music station, in which the person repeatedly said, “You might be a red-neck if…” followed by a series of scenarios. For example, “You might be a red-neck if you cut your grass and find your truck”. […]

The useless God

The Useless God

This post (which is much longer than usual) is an edited version of a talk given at a retreat earlier this year. During this time of various quarantine measures, when our “usefullness” seems thwarted, it seems an important meditation. I pray it is uselessly useful!

Life as a Creator

Life As A Creator

The first time I heard the suggestion that human beings should think of themselves as “co-creators” with God was in a liberal, mainline, seminary (Episcopal). This was in the 1970’s. The meaning at the time was something of a mish-mash of culture-notions that was little more than a way of […]

Grinch stole Pascha

How The Grinch Stole Pascha

The year 2020 will be remembered by Orthodox as the year without Pascha. At the beginning of the year, and even at the beginning of Great Lent, it hardly seemed possible. I remember the second Sunday of Great Lent here at St. Herman’s. We had served the Liturgy of St. […]

Pascha 2020

Pascha 2020: Things That Remain

This Lent we have lost so much. I am reminded of images that I sometimes see on television of people returning to their homes after forced evacuation due to flood or fire and of them pawing through the ruins to discover how much of what they had before still remained. […]

Hysteria or theology

Hysteria Or Theology

National disasters and times of war seem to bring out the crazy in all of us, and the present Covid crisis is proving to be no exception. One finds some people suggesting that it is all a conspiracy and that no such virus actually exists, while others tell us that […]