Wednesday, March 27, 2013

The Sunday of Orthodoxy (Monk Moses the Athonite)

By Monk Moses the Athonite

The Sunday of Orthodoxy, the festive celebration of the prevalence of truth, is the victory against heresies and delusions, schisms and conflicts. For two thousand years Orthodoxy remains true, steadfast, beloved, authentic, just, honorable, integral, genuine and inspiring. It cannot cease, cannot bend, cannot wilt, cannot fear, cannot be defeated, cannot be opposed, and cannot be conquered.

Orthodoxy is faithful to the Gospel, to the requirements of the Holy Apostles, to canonical apostolic succession. We need to proclaim to our neighbor the true ecclesiastical tradition, not only with words but by a powerful example. Orthodoxy is not sterile knowledge, but life and experience. The personal taste of faith is a sublime wealth, inexhaustible treasure, a source of joy and hope.

The uniqueness of Orthodoxy in times of confusion, anxiety, darkness and crisis raises a bright star to illuminate the mind and heart. Holy Orthodoxy does not lose its foundation easily when confronted by progressive nihilists. Its base is strong and the faithful people have felt well its great power.

Orthodoxy is a living meeting between people and God. It is not extremism, fanaticism, jealousy, hatred and obstinacy. It is the middle way, frank, measured, balanced, free and graceful. It unites, brings rest, animates and sanctifies. It is beyond natural, beyond logic, transformative, light-giving, meaningful and substantial. It is incorrupt, ancient and new, perfect, sacred, comprehensive, ecumenical, but not ecumenistic. Orthodoxy is not a museum exhibit, a nebula, an abstract habit, a statue, a worn out idol, or a rotting swamp. It is not ancestor obsession, folklorism, a beautiful religion among others, but a new way of life.

It is not a human construct, a witticism, an eloquence, a formality or externality. It is not a window display, a picture frame, egotistical and belonging to the past. It is a cross and resurrection, a crowned martyrdom, manly and brave. Its symbol is a cross. Its throne is modesty, humility and simplicity. It does not coerce, blackmail, enslave or revolt. An Orthodox is not born but made, is baptized and re-baptized. It is a stadium of struggle, repentance, freedom, fearlessness, security and hope. Joy, peace and refuge are elements of Orthodoxy. Hopefully we experience these comfortably. Let us not be spectators in the stands, but athletes in the arena - begining today - the Sunday of Orthodoxy.

Source: Translated by John Sanidopoulos.

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