Notes from a Baptismal Homily – Baptism as Cosmic Spiritual Warfare

Welcome Guests.  Congratulations. What is it that just happened?  What is it that baptism accomplishes? There are many ways to look at it: In secular terms, the community of St. Michael’s welcomed a family into formal membership.  This is, of course true, and while happy as we have been so happy them as worshipping and socializing with us until now, that happiness has now increased beyond measure.  This way of understanding it is true. There are also spiritual ways of looking at this, and, as many baptisms as we all have been blessed to witness and take part in, I am assuming you are familiar with them.  For example: In baptism, we are putting away the old man and putting on the new (that is, Christ). In baptism, we participate in … [Continue reading]

From the Archives: Baptism and the Baptismal Liturgy

Homily: Baptism and Baptismal Liturgy Welcome guests. Beautiful day. I am so happy that the [family] agreed to allow us to Baptize [their child] during Divine Liturgy. Nothing wrong with doing it after Liturgy: this is the way most of you were Baptized, and (as it was the way all the parents until now have preferred) it is the only way I have done it since I was blessed to begin serving this parish. The water is blessed in both cases; in both cases the child is brought into a more direct union with God through the sacraments of Baptism, Chrismation, and Communion. In both cases, the ceremony is performed with the whole Church. Both ways set the child up for success. So I love all baptisms. But since this tradition [of the Baptismal … [Continue reading]

On My Leaving St. Michael’s in Woonsocket (from the bulletin)

Why I Asked to be Transferred from St. Michael's in Woonsocket(From a Summer 2015 Bulletin) When Pani Matka Tina Marie and I look back on the eight years we spent with you here, I expect that we will recognize them as some of the best years of our … [Continue reading]

Homily: On the Need to Ritualize Gratitude

Reflection on the Rich Young Man St. Matthew 19:16-26 Prologue What would you give to inherit eternal life?  Because we are here together right now, I know that you are at least willing to give up the best two hours of the week for worship on … [Continue reading]

Homily – All Saints of Kyivan Rus’

Today we are remembering the Christian nation of Kyivan-Rus not just because they created a nation that built churches where they got baptized, married, and buried.  We remember them because they accepted Christ and they filled their lives with him. … [Continue reading]

Humanitarianism and Orthodoxy – a theological reflection

The Problem: the world (and humanity) groans in agony It’s a hard world.  It chews people up, divides them, deprives them, hurts them, and does its best to take away their hope.  It does its best to demean and dehumanize them.  We have all seen this … [Continue reading]

Homily Notes – Pentecost

Today is Pentecost, also known as Trinity Day.  Today we celebrate both the coming of the Holy Spirit to the Disciples and the unity that is found in the One God who is Three Persons. The reality of today’s feast is not some abstract theology, but a … [Continue reading]

Homily Notes: Living Water Must be Shared

John 4:5-42 St. Photini (the woman at the well) Main lessons:  The example and result of Christian ministry. We are all called to it Not complicated; sacrifice of love and attention Leads to repentance and the ability to love Not the love of … [Continue reading]

Homily Notes – Myrrbearers (and Consecration)

Acts 6:1-7Mark 15:43-16:8 Intro:  Giving your life over to the idea of God vs. giving your life over to Jesus Christ. Compare to marriage: love the idea of marriage (or whatever) vs. unity with love through a relationship Judas loved the idea of … [Continue reading]

The Illiberal Demand for Kosher and Halal Bacon


The Joy of BaconWith just a few days left before Pascha, the dominant logismoi distracting me from proper prayer (and analysis) is ... bacon.  I love it.  I especially love the really fatty kind that just melts in your mouth.  The best of the best is … [Continue reading]