Death, infirmity, temporality and susceptibility to passions entered this world with the sin; they are interwoven. Sin destroys everything in a man, both his body and his soul. Any doctor is perfectly aware of it.
We are responsible, mutually, for one another—because when we look right and left at the people who stand by us, what do we know about them? Do we know how broken they are? How much pain there is in their hearts? How much agony there has been in their lives?
And it doesn’t matter whether or not one chooses to fight, for if you make Jesus the center of your life in the Church, the Enemy will bring the fight to you. Not fighting is not an option. The only two options are: fight the Enemy and win, or let the Enemy take you out.
Late 19th century Moscow. The ideas of nihilists and revolutionaries stating that people are gods and tsars themselves are becoming increasingly vehement. People in the cities mostly go to Communion only once a year at Easter. In theological schools one can frequently meet people who treat the priesthood as an ordinary trade. For many people, faith had simply become a tradition.
Few people in Russia know about St. George’s Monastery on Sinai. We saw only one group of Russian pilgrims in it over two weeks of our stay there. They called at this place just for half an hour on their way to St. Catherine’s Monastery, where you can see Russian pilgrims nearly every day.
In the coming forty days we will gratefully remember how Christ constantly appeared to His disciples, how He revealed to them the mysteries of the Kingdom of God, how He revealed to them the understanding of the Church as a society of people united by love.