Monthly Archives: February 2015

Friday Ortho-linkage

Musings on blessings to have come out of a cancer diagnosis. [Morning Offering]

Although this image comes from Humans of New York and not strictly “Orthodox”, the message certainly is. [HONY/Facebook]

Who are the Copts and Who are the Assyrian Christians? [Leitourgeia]

In Case of Lent… The struggle as a comic. [Pithless Thoughts]

Fr. Stephen Freeman reminds us to ‘Get Real for Lent’ [Glory to God for All Things]

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With the gift of God’s wisdom, I curb incontinent anger; with this I quiet corrosive envy; with this again, I quell grief that shackles the heart; with this I moderate hatred, but not love: the one we should moderate; the other, knows no limits.

– St. Gregory the Theologian

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Clean Monday

A blessed Clean Monday to all. Kali sarakosti!


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The Act of Rigorous Forgiving [NY Times]

Vatican to open restrooms with showers, barber shop for homeless [Chicago Tribune]

The Divorce Surge Is Over, but the Myth Lives On [NY Times]

Stop thinking of dating as solely a numbers game [Carolyn Hax]

Madam CEO, Get Me A Coffee [NY Times]

Huh. Apparently today Brigid really likes the New York Times. Good to know.
Happy weekend!

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As Forgiveness Sunday approaches…

In the sixth century, Abba Dorotheus used an illustration of a compass to describe how our bonds with people affect our bond with God: “Suppose we were to take a compass and insert the point and draw the outline of a circle. The center p3038070680_886c731063_zoint is the same distance from any point on the circumference. Let us suppose that this circle is the world and that God is the center; the straight lines drawn from the circumference to the center are the lives of human beings.”

In order to move toward God, says Dorotheus, human beings must move from the circumference to life’s center: “The closer they are to God, the closer they become to one another; and the closer they are to one another, the closer they become to God…. Such is the very nature of life. The more we are turned away from and do not love God, the greater the distance that separates us from our neighbor.”

…We are saved together, by working out our salvation together as members of the body of Christ and his members of one another. How we relate to one another has everything to do with how we relate to God as imperfect, perfected people, our only hope lies in the forgiveness which God has made possible for us in Christ and in offering that forgiveness to one another. The Lord’s prayer sums it up well: “forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors.” We repent, ultimately, by forgiving others.

— Fr. Dn. John Chryssavgis, Soul Mending

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Quick Post: Plug for Climacus Conference audio

Last weekend I had the opportunity to attend the Climacus Conference in Louisville, KY. The hospitality, speakers, and attendees made for a wonderful weekend. What makes this conference unique is that it is basically an Orthodox spiritual retreat disguised as an academic conference. I will admit that my favorite part was attending Great Vespers in the St. Michael chapel right after the end of the conference. It was a perfect ending to remind us of our common purpose.

Ancient Faith Radio has posted the links to the talks. The talks were all worthy, but if your time is limited, don’t miss Andrew Gould’s fascinating lectures on the importance of Orthodox church arhitecture and liturgical art (unfortunately without the edifying visual presentations). And Fr. Jonathan Tobias is always, always worth listening to (or reading). Molly Sabourin and Fr. Nicholas Samaras’ presentations are shorter and worth your time.



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Lenten Plans 2015


I almost never cook these days, but you can check out my Google doc on guaranteed tasty Lenten recipes HERE.

I’ll be reading Apricot Jam by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn and closing out the Kristin Lavransdatter trilogy with The Cross. I will also be reading books and articles on economics and the trading industry, because I have Knowledge Gaps I Must Fill.keep-calm-and-live-lent-2

My crazy work schedule.


Red lentils and crockpot meals. My husband made it clear that he definitely does not like brown or green lentils, so I tried a St. Isaac of Syria stew one night. Wow! Try them if you have a rocky relationship with lentils yourself.

My Protestant roots are showing on this one. I’m trying to read a few chapters of the Bible every night, as several years back I was given a “One Year Bible.” There is a section from the Old and New Testament, Psalms and Proverbs for each day.

Trimming Activities
I’m a chronic scheduler of over-commitments. Do I really have time to work, sleep, participate in parish activities/services, sign-up for work committees, et cetera, et cetera? I’m having to look at what is important and how I want to spend my time. If it’s not in those, I need to get rid of it, no matter how much I think I can keep it in.


Split pea soup. In the bottom of a stockpot, I sauté some spices with onions, garlic, and veggies du jour. Fill the pot with water, add bouillon, toss in some peas. Let it simmer for a ridiculously long time, stirring periodically and checking the water level. Top with fresh pepper and garlic salt. Hearty and easy.

Shakespeare! I’m taking a class on his later plays. Currently enjoying this audiobook of Othello.

Dean’s Watch by Elizabeth Goudge, one of my favorite authors. Her City of Bells remains a favorite, for Lent and any other time of year.

St Nektarios by Sotos Chondropoulous. St Nektarios is one of those saints who follows me around; my fiancé mentioned him on one of our first dates, then I discovered I had an akathist to him, and then my mother mailed me his icon. Okay, I can take a hint!

Doing more
Housekeeping. Lent always feels like such a good time to catch up on mending, scrub down the cabinets, and bake bread. It’s peaceful. In theory.

See our 2014 plans here. How will you be spending Lent?

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Happy St. Valentine’s Day!


Jason Bach Cartoons

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Quick Post: 50 Shades of No Thanks

So apparently they’ve made a movie of 50 Shades of Grey, the book based on Twilight fanfiction that has become one of the best-selling books of all time, and it’s coming out this weekend. Because nothing says “love” like domestic abuse.

Do yourself a favor: Pick up a copy of Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty instead. There is domestic abuse in it; however I guarantee you the writing will be much more truthful, the characters much more believable and interesting, and the plot as un-put-downable than anything E.L. James has ever tried to do.

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Words of Wisdom

Love is ready to sacrifice everything, is not sparing of labor, does not take into account loss of time, effort, or means. Where there is love, everything is done easily, quickly, and willingly.

St Theophan the Recluse

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