Arimathea
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Religion
The human animal is the worshipping animal. Toward the divine, we have a need to pray, to sacrifice, to offer up, and to praise. From the spirit dances of primitive animism to the rational contemplation of philosophical paganism, from the ethical code of the rabbis to the theological vision of the scholastics, from the sprinkled blood (the origin of blessing) of temple cults to helping the poor in simple Christian charity, men need to relate the immanent and the transcendent -- they see their particular lives in time and space transfigured and transfused with meaning unbounded by human things. Religion is this aspect of human life where the everyday and worldly intersects with the ultimate and divine. Is this an accident of human evolution, or is it a racial neurosis brought upon us as conscious beings who live in the shadow of our own death? Is it a reflection of the divine order, where creatures naturally orient themselves toward their source? Has God revealed himself to us, as the Christians claim? In this realm, I shall try to delve into such questions as an Orthodox Christian who ever pesters God with "Why?"
Tuesday, April 30, A.D. 2013
Saint Innocent in Macon

May your holy week continue to be blessed.

The blog Byzantine, Texas posted a video last month about the parish of Saint Innocent in Macon, Georgia. Independent filmmaker Ted Liedle made the short documentary of the parish, though he himself is not Orthodox.

It is interesting to me what he found interesting about the parish community and thus included in his film. I wish the Southern Orthodox all the best as they live the faith in what used to be called the Bible Belt.

Posted by Joseph on Tuesday, April 30, Anno Domini 2013
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Monday, April 29, A.D. 2013
Elder Paisios of Mount Athos

I wish you a beneficial holy week.

A few weeks ago, I received a link to a documentary about Elder Paisios of Mount Athos, whom many of the faithful expect to be canonized. The film is a Russian production in Greek, though the following video has English subtitles.

If you would rather watch the original Russian dubbed version, you may access it at Паисий Святогорец.

Posted by Joseph on Monday, April 29, Anno Domini 2013
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Thursday, April 11, A.D. 2013
Dynamic Church Calendar

Crkvenikalendar.com features an impressive online Church calendar with beautiful icons and short hagiographies for the saints of the day. The site also offers codes for webmasters to display a saints of the day window on their pages. I prefer Ponomar’s Menologion Online for its flexibility and cuustomizations, but Crkvenikalendar’s ready-to-post feast day windows may be better suited for certains pages, especially social networking sites.

Posted by Joseph on Thursday, April 11, Anno Domini 2013
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Thursday, April 4, A.D. 2013
Abbazia Greca di San Nilo

I recently discovered the Exarchic Monastery of Santa Maria in Grottaferrata, Italy. Built upon Cicero’s villa, it is a community of Basilian monks outside Rome who worship according to the Byzantine rite. The monastery’s basilica features a Baroque iconostasis designed by Bernini!

I had no idea that such things existed. The abbey’s site has many photographs—and not simply on its photo page. Rome Art Lover offers a fine collection of pictures, as well. But a Baroque iconostasis! How marvellous is our complicated world!

Posted by Joseph on Thursday, April 4, Anno Domini 2013
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