Specialization as a threat to spiritual growth

One of the problems I have seen in Orthodoxy is [excessive] clericalism, the idea that religious experts are responsible for our spiritual needs.  We are all members of the royal priesthood!  Bishops and priests provide necessary sacramental services, grace, and guidance [etc.] … but we are all responsible for the state of our souls and the health […]

The Joy of Baking Prosphora

I love baking phosphora.  I’ve worked at it and learned what I can from my betters, but I certainly can’t claim to be great at it… so it’s all the more humbling to realize how this offering is transformed into something so glorious (a prefect metaphor for the Christian life!).   Here’s my current approach. […]

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 fried salo, a sort of bacon cut so that it […]

Fast Mimicking Diet (dry eating)

From https://www.quora.com/What-is-an-example-of-fasting-mimicking-diet Grocery List Quick oats Wheat bread Baby carrots Broccoli Bananas Blueberries Strawberries Avocado V-8 Juice (normal) Macadamia nuts (unflavored) Dry roasted almonds Peanuts Recipe One: Easy Mode Day 1 Water 1 cup dry quick oats, ample water, pinch of salt, 2 teaspoons of butter (10g protein, 12g fat, 54g carbs) 3 ounces carrots (~9 […]

Nazerite Vow Completed – anybody have 2 bits?

The Setting: the church fire brings new challenges At four-thirty in the morning of the feast of St. Michael, the police came to the rectory bearing some terrible news: the church was on fire.  It had obviously been burning for several hours; fire was coming out of the roof and windows.  In that moment, I […]

40 Days of Blogging: Bread or Beer? Or Bozhe?!

Today’s topic is “bread or beer”?  I’m writing from Constantinople (Istanbul), a country that was once the heart of a vibrant Christian empire… but is now 99% Mulim.  It’s a shock.  But I’ve seen it before even in my lifetime: so many Christian youth give up their baptismal garment to pursue demonic idols (“the gods […]

40 Days of Blogging: The Mighty Chicken

Day 3 of The 40 Days Blogging Challenge. We’ve really lost something in separating ourselves from the land.  I know men who can maintain a mean lawn, but can’t be bothered to plant a garden.  What does it say about us that we put resources into landscaping using ornamental grasses, plants, and trees… then go […]

Podcast: Rapturemania and the Underground Church w/ Fr. John Peck

20140929  Rapturemania and the Underground Church   The rapture: why are people excited about it and what’s it all about?  Why is the Church facing hard times and how can/should it respond?  Fr. John Peck and I talk about these things, an alternative approach to catechizing and doing missions, and the best Nicolas Cage movies […]

A Meditation on MLK Jr and Our Own Cowardice

The Lord God stands in the midst of the Divine Council and judges among the gods.”How long will you rule unjustly, and show partiality to the wicked?Defend the poor and fatherless, maintain the rights of the afflicted and the destitute.  Rescue the weak and needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked.” (Psalm 82:1-4) […]

Homily – “What do you want?” vs. “Who are you?”

Homily for the Sunday after Christmas [“On the fifth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me…”] It is common for us to lament the commercialization of Christmas, complaining that we have lost the “reason for the season.”  I think this is true.  Many of us are thankful that we are on the “Old […]