We very quickly simply forgot that we were talking to a patriarch, a person with great authority. There was a feeling that we were sitting and talking with our older brother.
It all began with a scandal. At the time when the progressives of mankind fought in a unified front against the dictator Milosevic and the “cursed Serbs,” one impudent French teenager dared to insist that France and Serbia share a long-standing relationship in the cultural sphere and as allies. And that all the Serbs had ever wanted was to protect their motherland and its people from disintegration.
To my great shame, I only learned about you very recently, just a couple months ago. Of course I’d heard of you, that there is such a saint as Spiridon of Tremithus. But I only really made your acquaintance just now. I hope, by the way, that our acquaintance will continue—and not for the rather embarrassing utilitarian reasons that brought me to you to begin with. I’ll refresh your memory about that. So, three months ago...
A conversation with the dean of the reviving Church of the Nativity of the Most-holy Mother of God on the Nizhny Dol in Vologda, archpriest Alexander Lebedev, about the “wickedness of our days”, given to us for repentance; our so-called “ordinary” sins; the “point of no return”; and the “salvation scheme” of the wise thief.
Those who were not indifferent wrote that they were willing to help as far as possible. And they did—some brought bread, others brought meat, others decorated the café for the New Year and the Nativity of Christ and donated over 1,000 presents. It was a true miracle. We realized that we are not alone.
“I firmly believe that familiarity with Prokudin-Gorsky’s photographs (not just a superficial glance) would be a great help to all who want to get to know Russia at least a little better and more sincerely—better than television, blogs, and newspapers. Bear in mind that nostalgia for the “good old days” should motivate us to work for the good of Russia and pray for it instead of plunging us into deep despondency.”
If you look at the map, you see that Lake Kubenskoye is rather small, but it turns out that it is seventy kilometers long! And just imagine: there is a tiny islet in the middle of the lake, and there is a monastery on the islet, and the Divine Liturgy is being celebrated in it! Peace and quiet, light, waves, a “thoughtful” cat is roaming about, campfire, while you are praying!
Abbess Evphalia (Lebedeva), who labored for more than twenty years over the restoration of the Resurrection Monastery in Goritsy in the Vologda Province, shares her thoughts about why people become monastics, discusses the saving quality of the ability not to answer injustices with anger, the advantage of peacocks and the ignorance of Germans, and recalls the recent history of Russia—the Russia of martyrs.
Bishop Mitrophan (Badanin) of Severomorsk and Umba (the far Northeast of Russia) talks with two young men, one a priest and the other an editorial writer, about the meaning of the podvig of the New Martyrs and confessors of Russia for us who live today, about the process of canonization of this great host of saints, and whether we live up to the great name of “Christian”.
They asked me if I would go to Sura, in Archangelsk Province, in the Far North. I replied, “I won’t just go there—I’ll walk there!” And I’ll admit that throughout the whole time I’ve been here, never once—not one hour, not one minute—have I regretted that I ended up here.
If you ever find yourself in Germany during your travels across Central Europe, you can visit the Monastery of the Greatmartyr George the Victorious, situated in the eastern part of the country near the Polish border, in the village of Götschendorf.
Wherever there are people, there is protest. We always protest everywhere: at school, at work, in the kitchen, the government, during travel, in the hospital, when we are both young and old. We protest against our relatives, neighbors, bosses, presidents, emperors, patriarchs, bishops, summer and winter, rain and drought, the traffic light when it’s red, and yes, that’s right, even when it’s green.
Priest Roman Vityuk speaks about why residents of Russia’s backwoods pray for the Chinese, whether we should be afraid of China or display a good Christian interest in it, why in the Chinese version of the prayer “Our Father” the word “bread” is replaced with “rice”, and what kind of people we should be in order to have success in our Orthodox mission to China.
The main goal of the events is to develop and strengthen, primarily in children, values that are seemingly obvious and understandable to everyone, for without such things as politeness, mercy, faithfulness and respect for elders, our life would turn into hell.
And now we, Orthodox Albanians, are travelling with the mission to Kosovo, meeting with Kosovars and trying to convince them of the fact that Orthodoxy exists for all nations, that Orthodoxy is as natural for Kosovars and Albanians as it is for Serbs and other nationalities, and that if we had been with Christ we would not have been bogged down with all these troubles.
The arrival of thousands of refugees, migrants and settlers from Africa and Asia to “the Old World” is already being interpreted by many Europeans as a catastrophe, a curse, and a real challenge not only to the culture, economy, and the Christian faith of the continent (which is still alive, though is becoming very weak), but, therefore, to the very existence of the continent and its native inhabitants. What should Europe do not to be afraid?
There was a miracle there: At the time we were under fire old Grandfather Pero was in the house. The old caretaker of the vineyard lingered—he didn’t try to flee anywhere. A Tomahawk missile made a direct hit: the whole house was turned into ruins in a second. When the dust settled, there was old Pero standing there looking around. Later our soldiers asked him, “Grampy Pero, how are you still alive?!”