What is the Holy Bible?

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ORTHODOX HEART SITES

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What is the Holy Bible?

We believe the Holy Bible, comprised of the Old and New Testaments, to be the inspired, infallible, and authoritative Word of God (Matthew 5:18; 2 Timothy 3:16-17).

In faith we hold the Holy Bible to be inerrant in the original writings, God-breathed, and the complete and final authority for faith and practice (2 Timothy 3:16-17).

While still using the individual writing styles of the human authors, the Holy Spirit perfectly guided them to ensure they wrote precisely what He wanted written, without error or omission (2 Peter 1:21).

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Protection of the Mother of God

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HOLY VIRGIN MARY, MOTHER OF GOD

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Protection of the Mother of God

The Protection of the Mother of God is one of the most beloved feast days on the Orthodox calendar among the Slavic peoples, commemorated on October 1. The feast is celebrated additionally on October 28 in the Greek tradition. It is also known as the feast of the Virgin Mary’s Cerement.

In most Slavic languages the word “cerement” has a dual meaning of “veil” and “protection.” The Russian word Pokrov (Покров), like the Greek Skepi (Σκέπη), has a complex meaning. First of all, it refers to a cloak or shroud, but it also means protection or intercession. For this reason, the name of the feast is variously translated as the Veil of Our Lady, the Protecting Veil of the Theotokos, the Protection of the Theotokos, or the Intercession of the Theotokos.

The feast

The feast day celebrates the appearance of the Mother of God at Blachernae (Vlaherna) in the tenth century. At the end of St. Andrei (Andrew of Constantinople) Yurodivyi’s life, he, with his disciple St. Epiphanius, and a group of people, saw the Mother of God, St. John the Baptist, and several other saints and angels during a vigil in the Church of Blachernae, nearby the city gates. The Blachernae Palace church was where several of Continue reading “Protection of the Mother of God”

Saint Theophanes & Saint Pansemni the former prostitute in Antiochia, Syria (+369) – June 10

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ORTHODOXY IS LOVE

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Saint Theophanes

& Saint Pansemni the former prostitute in Antiochia, Syria (+369)

June 10

The venerable Theophanes was born in Antioch, to unbelieving parents, but this did not thwart him from becoming a Christian at an early age, though he was not Baptized. When he was fifteen years old, his parents insisted he take a wife. Being married for three years, he was widowed when death intervened and took his wife.

Now unencumbered, Theophanes hastened to a Christian church, and received the Mystery of Holy Baptism. Then he built a narrow cell near Antioch, where he enclosed himself and expelled all his passions that dominated his body and soul, and excelled in the virtues.

With the passage of time, Theophanes learned that in the city dwelled a prostitute named Pansemni, who brought ruin to many men. Pricked in his heart over this calamity, both on behalf of the woman and her male admirers, Theophanes entered into deep prayer, whereupon he was enlightened to ransom Pansemni and take her as his wife. Therefore, he removed his hair shirt and donned expensive apparel. Theophanes visited his father to reveal his intentions in taking a second wife, and the father gladly gave his son ten gold coins.

Theophanes then visited Pansemni the prostitute in her home. Upon entry, he was invited to eat and drink with her. After engaging in a pleasant conversation, Theophanes bluntly asked Pansemni how long she had been involved in her indecent vocation. Unoffended, she stated she had been engaged in her occupation for twelve years. She also added that of all her admirers, Theophanes was by far the most handsome. Unaffected by the compliment, since Theophanes desired to preserve the purity of his soul and body, he told her: “I desire and intend to take you in honorable marriage.” Pansemni was quite pleased at his pleasant proposal, reasoning that it was a singular token of esteem for her, being a shameless prostitute. Accepting his proposal, Theophanes gave her his ten gold coins and told her to hasten in the preparations for the wedding.

Taking his leave, Theophanes returned to his cell outside the city. While Pansemni prepared for their marriage, Theophanes also made preparations for Pansemni by building her a cell not far from his own. Not long after, he returned to the city and visited her. However, this time he placed a condition on her. Unless she accepted the Christian faith and became a Christian, they would be unable to cohabit. Pansemni initially found this condition difficult to accept, so she requested time to consider the matter.

Seven days later Pansemni heard someone speaking about the future judgement, how the righteous would enjoy eternal life and the blessings that come from it, while the unrighteous would receive eternal condemnation. Her conscience became censured by this, and the grace of God moved her to profound contrition, allowing her heart to be transformed from impious to pious. Conscious of her sinfulness, she disowned her ancestral polytheism, and assented to the teachings of the Gospel.

Seeking the perfect path of piety, Pansemni resolved to enter the ranks of the newly-illumined, and received Holy Baptism. Her new path in life moved her to free her retinue of servants and handmaids, and she donated everything she received and acquired through her disreputable occupation to the Church of God for suitable distribution. Pansemni, therefore, bidding farewell to the pleasures of this world, devoted herself to qualities her name implied, that is, to be all-modest.

Having nothing left in the world, she hastened to Theophanes who brought her to the cell he built for her. Inflamed with divine eros, she sought to contemplate the beauty of the Bridegroom, Jesus Christ, the fairest among men, and sought union with Him intensely and with longing.

Pansemni kept watch over her inward thoughts and guarded her heart in this endeavor, and through asceticism of the body and soul, her labors attracted divine grace, gaining spiritual regeneration and victory. She had such an outpouring of divine grace that she was able to dispel demons and heal diverse passions and illnesses. And this was done in a very short time, since the devout and venerable Pansemni lived only fourteen months after baptism, and she was translated to the Heavenly Bridegroom on the same day the venerable and wonderworking Theophanes surrendered his soul to the Lord.

Source:

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ORTHODOX HEART SITES

Advice about Confession – Saint Paisios of Mount Athos, Greece (+1994)

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SAINT PAISIOS OF MOUNT ATHOS, GREECE

Advice about Confession

Saint Paisios of Mount Athos, Greece (+1994)

Source:

http://stjohntheforerunnerblog.blogspot.com

http://stjohntheforerunnerblog.blogspot.com/2015/10/advice-about-confession-st-paisios.html

ST. JOHN THE FORERUNNER

We all know the importance of Confession, but yet so few take advantage of it. Here Saint Paisios of Mount Athos, Greece (+1994) shows us why it is so important.

A young man went to see the Elder. I arrived the moment he was ringing the bell, and waited behind him. After a while, Father Paisios opened the door and came to the fence.

-What’s up, young man, what do you want? asked the Elder.

-Father, I would like to see you and get your advice on something.

-Have you gone to confession? Do you have a spiritual father?

-No, Father, I don’t have a spiritual father and I haven’t gone to confession.

-Well, then you better go to confession and then come to see me.

-Why can’t I see you, Father?

-I will explain to you, so you can understand. Your mind is confused and troubled by the sins you have fallen into; as a result, you cannot realize the Continue reading “Advice about Confession – Saint Paisios of Mount Athos, Greece (+1994)”

Svatý Mames nebo Mamans z Malé Asie a lev (+275) – 2. září ╰⊰¸¸.•¨* Czech

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SAINTS OF MY HEART

Svatý Mames nebo Mamans z Malé Asie a lev (+275)

2. září

Svatý Mames nebo Mamans (asi 258–275) byl pastýř, který byl umučen při pronásledování křesťanů v době vlády císaře Aureliána v Malé Asii.

Jako poustevník žil v míru s divokou zvěří. Byl zajat a odsouzen k roztrhání lvy v aréně. Ti ho však nechali bez povšimnutí a Mames byl ukamenován přihlížejícími diváky.

Zdroj:

Wikipedia

Creation – Fr. Antonios Alevizopoulos, Greece

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HAVE FAITH – ORTHODOXY

Creation – Fr. Antonios Alevizopoulos, Greece

Orthodox Christians believe that God is “the Creator of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invis­ible”. The world is not eternal; only God is eternal. He created the entire world out of nothing: “for he spoke, and it came to be; He commanded, and it stood forth” (Ps. 33,9).

Man cannot determine the manner in which the world came into being; for it is not an object of scien­tific examination, for it transcends man’s “rational” ability (his logic). Man is part of created reality, he cannot become an “observer” of the manner in which he himself was created!

The world is not of the same nature with God; “by nature” it is entirely different. The world is not a creation from the essence of God, “light from light” but the fruit of God’s volition and freedom; there is an insurmountable chasm separating God’s essence from the essence of the created world.

God need not have created the world. The world, however, was pre-eternally in God’s “thought”. Thus the creation of the world does not mean a change in God’s life. The world came into being according to God’s plan and at a time which pre-eternally existed in God’s will.

Before making visible creation, God created the spiritual world, i.e. the angels: “When the stars were created, all my angels with a loud voice praised me”, says God to Job (Job 38,7). Neither angels nor men existed pre-eternally. Angels are spiritual persons. They were created in time and are limited by Continue reading “Creation – Fr. Antonios Alevizopoulos, Greece”

What Every Christian Needs To Know About All Of The Christians Who Saved Jews In The Holocaust ╰⊰¸¸.•¨* A growing list of Orthodox Christians that rescued Jews during the Holocaust era

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ORTHODOX HEART SITES

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What Every Christian Needs To Know

About All Of The Christians Who Saved Jews In The Holocaust

╰⊰¸¸.•¨*

A growing list of Orthodox Christians that

rescued Jews during the Holocaust era

Much has been said regarding the famed Yad Vashem awards given to a number of Roman Catholics and Protestants. What needs to be noted however, is that there were just as many Orthodox Christians who were participants of rescuing Jews from the Nazi death squads and who selflessly did so at the expense of their own lives in a number of cases. May God honour their blessed memory as I list, although still growing, of a number of these blessed souls.

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Chiune Sugihara (1900-1986)-This Japanese diplomat in WWII was a convert to the Orthodox Church due to his contact with the Russian Orthodox Church via his first wife. Despite leaving his first wife, he never wavered in his Orthodox Christian faith and managed to lead his second wife, Yukiko, to the Orthodox Faith. He and Yukiko, worked tirelessly to write passports via their embassy in Lithuania, to allow many Polish Jews to leave the region to escape Nazi death camps. When he was asked as to one of his motivations for his actions, he mentioned his faith in God. He was discharged from his position unceremoniously after the War, and was only to be discovered later by one of the Jews he rescued, in Russia. He was later awarded Yad Vashem by Israel in 1985, one year before his death, but was too ill to receive the award and thus his son received it on his behalf. His wife, Yukiko, mentions that she had read the Book of Lamentations in the Old Testament, and thus was motivated to ask her husband to save the Jews as well in Lithuania.

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Archbishop Damaskinos of Athens (1891-1949)-This blessed Archbishop of Athens, when Greece fell under Nazi occupation in 1941, did everything possible to rescue Jews from death. He is renowned for writing a letter to the occupying government protesting atrocities committed against Jews and urged the government to desist from arresting them or committing any harm towards them. In addition, when asked to put the names down of Jews to be arrested and taken away by the Nazi forces for throwing into concentration camps, he put his own name on the list. In addition, he was known for quietly urging a number of congregants to issue baptismal certificates for Jews to allow them to escape.

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Metropolitan Chrysostomos of Zakynthos (1890-1958)- Similar to the above, also risked his life to save the Jewish community in Zakynthos, Greece. He and also Mayor Loukás Karrer, refused to comply with Nazi demands of listing the Jews in the island for deportation and instead submitted their own names. In addition, they made sure that the Jews were distributed throughout various villages to prevent capture. Both were awarded by Israel in 1978 with Yad Vashem for their good work.

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Angelos Evert (1894-1970)- A police officer during the Nazi occupation of Greece, he was inspired by Archbishop Damaskinos to act selflessly for the Jews and was also responsible for issuing Christian identities for Jews in Greece. Awarded in 1969 by Israel with Yad Vashem.

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Prince Constantin Karadja (1889-1950)-Serving as a diplomat in Romania under Nazi occupation, he personally organised the saving of 10,000+ Jews in Romania using all his diplomatic ability. He was awarded Yad Vashem posthumously in 2005.

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Princess Helen of Greece and Denmark (1896-1982)- She was married to King Carol II of Romania and was renowned for saving Jews in Romania. And caring for the wounded under Nazi occupation. For her righteous work, she was also awarded Yad Vashem by Israel too.

Amongst the 2 most prominent churches renowned for helping and rescuing Jews are the Bulgarian and Serbian Orthodox Church. There were many clergy and laymen that risked their necks to rescue Jews from Nazi deportations and atrocities.

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In the Bulgarian Orthodox Church, there is Patriarch Cyril aka Konstantin Markov Konstantinov (1901-1971), who personally risked his life to stop the Nazi deportation of Jews in Bulgaria.

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Dimitar Peshev (1894-1973)-Although he was a politician that signed a law in Bulgaria that supported anti-Jewish behaviour due to Nazi occupation, yet actions spoke louder than words. He was a friend to the Jewish community in Bulgaria, and when he learnt from a Jewish friend of a Nazi attempt to deport Jews in Bulgaria to various death camps, he personally went out of his way to stop this. He worked to sabotage Nazi operations in this regard and even wrote letters to stop any further anti-Jewish measures. He was finally recognized by Israel in 1973 and was awarded Yad Vashem.

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Maria Skobtsova (1891-1945)- Also has been canonised by the Russian Church as St. Mary of Paris. Also known by many as Mother Maria. She became a nun despite coming from a prominent family, and as a nun in 1940, when France was occupied by Nazi Germany, personally engineered the saving of Jews in France through her convent. She and Father Dimitri Klepinin (who was also canonised a Saint by the Russian Church as well) worked tirelessly to save Jews from death camps and to organise rescue missions. She and Father Klepenin organised baptismal certificates to be issued for Jews in France. Both she and Father Klepenin were martyred in Nazi death camps. She chose to die in the place of a Jewish woman in 1945. She was issued Yad Vashem posthumously and was canonized along with Father Dimitri Klepinin in 2004 by both the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople and also by the Moscow Patriarchate.

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Father Dimitri Klepinin (1904-1944)-Canonized as St. Dimitri Klepinin in 2004, he worked alongside Mother Maria Skobtsova to rescue Jews. Serving under the Russian Orthodox Church as was St. Mary of Paris, he was initially serving the émigré community in France. Nazi occupation changed a lot for him and saw him being arrested for issuing false baptismal certificates to Jews and to be deported to the death camp of Dora, near Buchenwald. He was posthumously awarded in 1987 Yad Vashem by Israel and canonized by the Ecumenical Patriarchate as well as Moscow Patriarchate alongside Maria Skobtsova.

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Alexej Alexandrovich Glagolev (1901-1972)-A Ukrainian Orthodox priest that was awarded posthumously along with his wife and daughter in 1991 with Yad Vashem by Israel. Their son was awarded nine years later with the same. He and family were personally responsible for organising rescue of Jews and issuing them with baptismal certificates. He often faced beatings from the Nazis and his family also faced constant persecution too.

Since 2007, 127 Serbian nationals, and members of the Orthodox Church, have been listed as recipients of Yad Vashem. What can be said, is that the Serbian Orthodox Church played a great role in the rescue and saving of Jews from both Nazi German forces and the Croatian Ustache.

This list is by no means complete. However, what is certain, is that all these selfless men and women, are jewels of the Orthodox Church to the whole world. May their memory be blessed and eternal and may God forgive them of all their sins, both voluntary and involuntary. Amen

Source:

http://www.pravmir.com/what-every-christian-needs-to-know-about-all-of-the-christians-who-saved-jews-in-the-holocaust/

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ORTHODOX CHRISTIANITY AND THE WORLD