Dear Parishioners, Glory to the Lord:
In recent years we have witnessed and participated in major events in our community in Calgary; The purchase of the new land, construction of our Church and the completion of the landscape surrounding the Church. We believe that each of you is proud of what has been accomplished. Continue reading
At one time, even fairly recently, the date July 17 in the so-called “new style,” was marked as a day of sorrow, because on this day the Russian people and the Russian diaspora remembered the great evil act when the Royal Family was brutally killed in the basement of Ipatiev House. This was a day of mourning, but no longer! Now the Royal Family has been glorified as a family of holy martyrs. Never forget that when the Church glorifies a saint, the act itself does not create the saint, it only declares to the people that this person or this group of people have been glorified in God.
In the collection of the Lives of Saints we see a wonderful example. Once there was a man who occupied a very lofty position, he was renowned and wealthy, but he left to join a monastery, to become a monk, and took up the life of the ascetics, in fasting, prayer and deprivation. Others lived nearby who shared his way of life, many of them were more severely ascetic than he. Yet the faithful began to flock to him, benefiting from his inspired spiritual discussions and guidance, and the Lord glorified him with the gift of sagacity and miracles. One of the monks asked his elder: why is this so? “This man is an ascetic, of course, but he is no better than the others, in fact, there are others who lead stricter ascetic lives, but are not granted the gifts of discernment or miraculous works, with such spiritual talents. Why did the Lord bestow these upon him, then?”
The economy of our salvation is accomplished! The operation of the Most Holy Trinity have now come into effect to accomplish it. What God the Father has willed, the Son of God fulfilled in Himself, and the Holy Spirit has now descended in order to impart it to the faithful. For our salvation is according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the Blood of Jesus Christ (I Pet. 1:2). For this sake we are baptized in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, obliged, to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you (Matt. 28:19–20). Those who do not confess the Most Holy Trinity cannot participate in the saving action of Its Hypostases and thus receive salvation. Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, the Trinity one in essence and undivided, granting us confession of Itself! “O Father Almighty, and Word, and Spirit, one nature united in three Hypostases, transcendent and extremely divine! Into Thee have we been baptized, and Thee shall we bless throughout all ages.”
„Thoughts for Each Day of the Year“ by St. Theophan the Recluse
This is the last interview that Hieromonk Vasily (Roslyakov) is known to have given, shortly before Pascha, April 18, 1993, when he and two other monks—Trophim and Therapont—were killed by the hand of a satanist at Optina Pustyn.
—Fr. Vasily, what do you think—will Optina be reborn?
—Holy Scripture tells us that God is not the God of the dead, but of the living. In God, all are alive. We serve precisely this God, Who arose and conquered death by His resurrection; God has no death, and in God there is no death; it exists only outside of God. Therefore, it is wholly natural that Optina is alive. For a believer, this question does not even exist.
—And are there living elders?
—And the spirit of Russia—what is it?
—The spirit of Russia is Christ.
We have arrived at Holy Week and the Passion of our Lord. His life-giving Passion began at Bethany, from the village of Martha and Mary. This is where He set out with the little donkey and His disciples in order to make His entrance into Jerusalem. We witness Him Who sits upon a throne of glory simultaneously sitting upon a throne of humility. This is what our Lord wanted to teach us by mounting this humble animal: humility. Continue reading
The demon always rejoices when things are hidden. Thieves do not steal as much during the day; they steal more often during the night. Similarly, the demons hide within the night of concealed thoughts, and this is when they harm us.
For this reason, we should go to confession and we should not hide anything. We should repel this difficulty, because we all feel ashamed—and I first. “How will I say this?” we think, when in essence it is easy. In a split second, when a person reveals what is on his mind, he is freed, and afterwards he wonders: “What was preventing me from confessing?” It was the demon who did not want to be exposed by the light of sacred and purifying confession, who did not want you to attain forgiveness and enlightenment.
Let us spread before His feet not garments or soulless olive branches, which delight the eye for a few hours and then wither, but ourselves, clothed in His grace, or rather, clothed completely in Him. We who have been baptized into Christ must ourselves be the garments that we spread before Him. Now that the crimson stains of our sins have been washed away in the saving waters of baptism and we have become white as pure wool, let us present the Conqueror of death, not with mere branches of palms but with the real rewards of His victory.
St. Andrew of Crete on Palm Sunday