The Priest As A Role Model

by Fr. Vladimir Berzonsky To be a model for others requires an enormous amount of spiritual gifts to offset his glaring imperfections. And if he thinks of himself as a prototype for others, he’s already in trouble. “Be an example to the believers in word, in conduct, in love, in spirit, in faith, in purity” (St. Paul’s first letter to Timothy 4:12) Through the years I’ve been gifted with more than a few pectoral crosses, the sort Read more…


How to Avoid the Priesthood

by Fr. Sergei Begian Whoever has been to an ordination knows how grace fills the church at the moment of the imposition of hands…. Joy fills the hearts of those praying, even if they do not personally know the person being consecrated to the priestly rank. With what stateliness and joy do they sing the troparia “Holy Martyrs,” “Glory to Thee, O Christ God,” and “Dance, O Isaiah”! The man being consecrated to the priesthood is Read more…


Royal Inadequacies of the Royal Priesthood

by Fr. Sergei Sveshnikov One of my favorite writers, Fr. Sergei is the author of Imagine That: Mental Imagery in Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Private Devotion, and I recommend it to everyone, especially those discerning a priestly vocation. You can get it on Amazon HERE. “Behold, how good and pleasant it is when brothers dwell in unity!”–Psalm 133:1 While there are many wonderful and holy pastors who labor in Christ’s Read more…


Christian Priesthood and Ecclesial Unity

Some Theological and Canonical Considerations by Professor Contantine Scouteris School of Theology of the University of Athens 1. The records of the early Christian tradition leave no doubt that Christian priesthood is not a "function" necessary for the institutional being of the Church. Nor is it an autonomous, isolated and self sufficient office belonging to the ordained individual. It is rather a ministry related and belonging Read more…


Survey Results: Observations and Advice for New Priests

We are coming up on graduation day for our seminaries, so I fielded a survey to gather the collective wisdom of priests to share with our new graduates and ordinands. These sets of “five things” are offered with thanks to the priests who answered the survey and prayers for all our clergy.  It's a beautiful and blessed - but often incredibly difficult - life. Five Things that Surprised Us in Parish Ministry Worldly Behavior. Read more…


Seminaries: What Were and Are They For?

This was originally presented in a series over the space of several months and contained a great deal of repetition.  I first published it in its entirety.  I have now attempted to out the repetition.  With thanks, Fr. Anthony By Ihumen Gregory (Woolfenden) Published in The Ukrainian Orthodox Word, Issues 1996 8, 9, and 10 Part One. In the history of the Orthodox Church, seminaries as we know them today are a relatively Read more…


Gifts and Talents and the Road to Hell

"Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it Read more…