Monthly Archives: November 2014

Love of Work…

“A lot of people today are tormented because they don’t love what they are doing for a living. They can’t wait until it’s time to go. However when one has zeal for work and when one cares about the things he makes, the more he works the more his zeal grows. He is immersed in his work and when it’s time to leave he asks, “Where did the time go?” Even if it is to eat, to rest; he forgets everything! And has not eaten but he is not hungry; he may not have slept but he is not sleepy and he may even rejoice over not needing sleep. It’s not that he suffering from hunger or sleeplessness; for him his work is a feast and he enjoys it.”
Elder Paisios
~Family Life


Hidden Grace…

“Virtue does not have a bell that rings to rouse your curiosity, to make you turn and see him. It is an immaterial gift of God. Why is it called grace? Because it cannot be seen, contained, visualized, or colored. A gift of God. An inexpressible, incomprehensible and most rich miracle. This is why when the Lord walked down the road He looked like the rest of the people even though He is the True God. “He eats and drinks,” they said. He was called a deceiver and possessed. And today if someone speaks about grace, about purification of the inner man he is considered diluted…the idea of taking care of the inside of the cup as the Lord tells us has been completely removed from people’s minds.”
Elder Joseph
~Monastic Wisdom


Consequences of Sodom…

“That the sin of Sodom was abominable and beyond abominable is proven by the fact that there were not even ten righteous men in it… But God’s wrath did not only come down on Sodom but on many other cities first that had so distorted people that they did not anymore resemble God’s creation in any way. So if this happened to evil cities in which the name of Jesus Christ could not have been heard, what will happen to Christian cities baptized in the name of the Lord, the Son of God, who are on par with evil of Sodom?”
St Nikolai Velimirovich
~Missionary Letters #3


Treating Spiritual Illness…

“The way I understand it there are four kinds of people. There are the healthy and the frail as well as people with benign tumors and people with malignant tumors. The last kind are incurable. With the second and third kinds you’ve got to use discernment to treat them which also has to do with how much they want to be treated…We can’t deal with everyone the same way, we can’t put everyone on the same diet. We need to decide what to give to each person according to his disposition, his struggle, his thirst. That way we won’t hurt anyone”
Elder Paisios
~Elder Paisios of Mt. Athos



“The Lord said repent and believe in the gospel. True repentance does not only entail being sorry for one’s previous sins but also a complete turnaround of one’s soul from darkness to light, from earth to heaven, from oneself to God. Repentance without a complete turnaround is nothing more than playing around with God and with one’s own soul. And we ought not to play games with God. He is merciful to a repentant one but chastises heavily him who refuses to repent or whom repents insincerely or incompletely. When He chastises the wound is deep and He is the only one who can fill it again.”
St Nikolai Velimirovich
~Missionary Letters #3


Real Theology…

“As one reads the letters of Elder Joseph he perceives that a scent of theology emanates from them – that is that these are theological texts. Unfortunately we have formed the impression that theology is lofty theories, scientific theological analyses, understanding theological terms, quoting historical theological events, etc. How ever true Orthodox theology is experience; it is knowledge of God which is given to the person whose heart and nous have been purified and illuminated…”
Elder Ephraim on Elder Joseph
~My Elder Joseph


Prayer for the Departed…

“… Geronda found out that his cousin had a bad death. When she reached her end God made an example of her to show her relatives that her behavior had not been good…From that day on, Geronda begin to fast and pray constantly for his cousin. For a long time he kept seeing that she was in the darkness of hell. One day he was praying in his hut for her he saw her ascending out of hell into heaven full of joy and holding a key in her hand…This reveals that through Elder Joseph’s many prayers and fasting Catherine was freed from the bonds of hell! Indeed, “the effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.””
Elder Joseph
~My Elder Joseph


Gift of Tongues…

“After the first or perhaps the second century there is no record of it in any Orthodox source and is not recorded as occurring even among the great Fathers of the Egyptian desert who are so filled with the Spirit of God that they perform numerous astonishing miracles including raising the dead. The Orthodox attitude to genuine speaking in tongues then may be summed up in the words of Blessed Augustine: “In the earliest times the Holy Spirit fell upon them that believed and they spake with tongues which they had not learned as the Spirit gave them utterance. These were signs adapted to the time. For was fitting that there is this sign of the Holy Spirit in all tongues to show that the Gospel of God was to run through all the tongues over the whole world. That was done for a sign and it passed away.””
Fr. Seraphim Rose
~Orthodoxy and the Religion of the Future


Key to the Kingdom

“Turn your mind towards Him continually. Learn to love prayer, familiar converse with the Lord. What counts above all is love, passionate love for the Lord, for Christ the Bridegroom. Become worthy of Christ’s love. In order not to live in darkness turn on the switch of prayer so that divine light may flood your soul. Christ will appear in the depths of your being. There in the deepest and most inward part is the Kingdom of God. The Kingdom of God is within you.”
Elder Porphyrios
~Wounded by Love


Gaining Humility

“I remember that sometimes when we ate a spiritual discussion would begin. The other fathers exchange their ideas but as soon as I began talking Geronda abruptly interrupted me and said, “Shush.” Their conversation continued but a little while later there was something I could also offer – a correct solution, an opinion. Yet once again Geronda said, “‘Shush! We told you not to speak.” A sarcastic thought maybe want to say, “Geronda you sure respect me a lot!” But I quickly silenced that thought with another thought: “Geronda knows what he’s doing; he’s right.” Since it didn’t take long for Haralambos to learn these lessons what did his wife Elder scheme up? Instead of berating him who had already learned to deal with this, Geronda begin to blame his family and especially his father who had already passed away. When Haralambos heard this his endurance begin to crumble and he complained in his thoughts… But once again he fought against himself and convinced himself that he didn’t have the right to judge his elder.”
Elder Haralambos on Elder Joseph
~My Elder Joseph