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Assorted Works & Texts

Separation from God

It is said concerning Abba Agathon that some monks came to find him, having heard tell of his great discernment. Wanting to see if he would lose his temper, they said to him, “Aren’t you that Agathon who is said to be a fornicator and a proud man?” “Yes, it is very true,” he answered. They resumed, “Aren’t you that ... Read More »

How Often Should We Receive Holy Communion?

      St Macarius Notaras, Bishop of Corinth To receive Communion the usual two or three times a year is good and helpful, but to receive Communion more frequently is far better. Remember, the nearer a person comes to the light, the more light he gets. The closer he draws to the fire, the warmer he is. The nearer ... Read More »

A transition to life: The Dormition of the Mother of God

Archimandrite Ephrem (Philotheitis) Every time we celebrate the Dormition of the Mother of God, it’s as if we’re having Easter – the Easter of the summer. Our Lady the Mother of God prepares Easter for us. A glorious crossing “from death to life”. A second Easter, holy spotless, life-giving for the human race, because today “the laws of nature are ... Read More »

Geronta, Why Are The Demons Afraid Of You?”

By Elder Ephraim of Arizona There was a holy man who cast out demons—the demons feared him. One of his disciples asked him, “Geronta, why are the demons afraid of you?” “My child, I will tell you”, said the Elder. “I had a mental war with carnal thoughts, but I never allowed myself to yield to them. I had always ... Read More »

Prayer of the Heart for the Faithful Living in the World

Archimandrite Ephraim of Vatopedi The question is always being asked, “Is it possible for those living in the world to occupy themselves with noetic [1] prayer?” To those who ask we answer quite affirmatively, “Yes.” In order to make this exhortation of ours comprehensible to those interested, but at the same time to make aware those who are unaware, we ... Read More »

Breaking Through the Spiritual Sound Barrier

By Matushka Constantina This is one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever read concerning the difficult points in one’s struggle to attain holiness. I thought you’d all benefit as well from the elder’s divinely-inspired words. From Archimandrite Athanasios Mitilinaios.  Homilies on the Book of Revelation. trans. Constantine Zalalas (St.Nikodemos Publications: Bethlehem, 2009), 201-202: When you begin to climb spiritually, at ... Read More »

The Tale of the Prayer and the Little Fox

In Egypt, in whose ancient Christian past there had once been many grand monasteries, there once lived a monk who befriended an uneducated and simple peasant farmer. One day this peasant said to the monk, “I too respect God who created this world! Every evening I pour out a bowl of goat’s milk and leave it out under a palm ... Read More »

The Confessions of St. Patrick

Unlike most Western pre-schism Orthodox saints, St. Patrick the Enlightener of Ireland left us a description of his conversion and apostolic labours in his own words. They are known as his “Confessions”.    *1. I, Patrick, a sinner, a most simple countryman, the least of all the faithful and most contemptible to many, had for father the deacon Calpurnius, son of ... Read More »

St. Arsenios of Cappadocia: BLESSING-PSALTER

THE PSALTER AS A BOOK OF NEEDS, according to the usage of St. Arsenios of Cappadocia, as transmitted by the Athonite Elder Paisios. Translated for the St. Pachomius Library by Vassilios Kollias Edited by Karen Rae Keck EDITOR’S NOTE: Saint Arsenios used to use the Psalms for blessings, especially when there was no prescribed blessing for a particular occasion. Here ... Read More »