Feb
19

Some Good Advice on (NOT) Taking Offense

Joseph kissing Benjamin (source; wikipedia commons)

If you aren't following Dn. Michael Hyatt (blog, Twitter, podcast, Facebook), then you have a wealth of practical wisdom waiting for you!  In this episode of his podcast, he takes on a critical skill: avoiding taking offense.  Let's face it: clergy have plenty of opportunity to get upset: they hear all kinds of criticism being directed against them, their parish, their bishop, their families, even Orthodoxy itself.   Dn. Michael argues Read more…

Oct
16

On The Mystery Of Ordination

Bishop at Pentecost

by St. Nikolai Velimirovich "And when they had prayed, they laid their hands on them" - Acts of the Apostles 6:6 By laying their hands on the chosen faithful, the apostles consecrated bishops, priests and deacons. It is apparent from this that the Christian Faith is not only a teaching, but also a power. It is not only necessary to know but also to have power. It is not only necessary to be chosen by men but you should be Read more…

Sep
17

Clergy Anger & the Urgency of a True Spiritual Life

Clergy headaches

by Thomas G. Bandy Thinking about ordained ministry? Think twice, act once. As I coach pastors, one of the most pervasive issues is clergy anger. Anger, of course, is just one half of the vicious cycle of anger-depression. Clergy are more likely to admit to depression, because admitting anger makes them feel too guilty. Yet admitting depression ... without admitting the root cause of repressed anger ... is a form of dishonesty with Read more…

May
27

On The Duties Of Clergy: The Dangers Of Speaking

microphone

by St. Ambrose of Milan Manifold dangers are incurred by speaking; the remedy for which Scripture shows to consist in silence. Book 1: Chapter II 5. Now what ought we to learn before everything else, but to be silent that we may be able to speak? lest my voice should condemn me, befor that of another acquit me; for it is written: "By thy words thou shall be condemned." (Matt. 12:37) What need is there, then, that thou should Read more…

May
20

On The Duties Of Clergy

before thy cross

By St. Ambrose of Milan Book I: Chapter I Elected to the episcopacy while still a layman, by the common acclaim of the citizens of Milan, St. Ambrose took his duties and those of his clergy with great seriousness and exacting. We'll be publishing a section of his work "On The Duties Of Clergy" every Monday for awhile. Read and enjoy. 1. I think I shall not seem to be taking too much on myself, if, in the midst of my children, I yield Read more…

Apr
17

The Priesthood & The Remission of Sins: Part 3

remission of sins

by Metropolitan Hierotheos of Nafpaktos 3. Remission of Sins The subject of the remission of sins needs to be examined here because, under the influence of Western ideas, we have a legalistic view of it. We look upon sins as moral transgressions that arouse God’s anger, and so we see the remission of sins as nothing other than the propitiation of God’s justice and wrath. This whole perception, which is borrowed from courts of law, is Read more…

Apr
16

The Priesthood & The Remission of Sins: Part 2

001-antony-and-feodosy-of-the-kiev-caves

by Metropolitan Hierotheos of Nafpaktos 2. Spiritual Priesthood Apart from Sacred (ordained) priesthood, there is also what is called spiritual priesthood. Orthodox Psychotherapy has a whole section analyzing this important subject. It is explained there that a person who has noetic prayer and prays for the whole world belongs to this spiritual clergy. I write: “The faithful who have noetic prayer have spiritual priesthood, Read more…