Dear Readers: A long time supporter of the Mystagogy Resource Center has informed me that they would like to donate $3000 to help me continue the work of this ministry, but they will only do it as a matching donation, which means that this generous donation will only be made after you help me raise a total of $3000. If you can help make this happen, it will be greatly appreciated and it would be greatly helpful to me, as I have not done a fundraiser this year. If you enjoy the work done here and want to see more of it, please make whatever contribution you can through the DONATE link below. Thank you!
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September 30, 2014

Abba Isaac the Syrian, the "Unjustly Accused" Saint (3 of 7)

Metropolitan Hilarion Alfeyev

3. Irreverent Chatter Regarding the Person of Saint Isaac

Let us now turn to the book by Alfeyev. "From Wensinck's preface and other works I learnt who Isaac was" writes Bishop Kallistos Ware in the Foreword. "I discovered that he belonged to the Church of the East, commonly called 'Nestorian'. But, so I gradually came to realize, this did not mean that either Isaac himself, or the ecclesiastical community to which he belonged, could justly be condemned as heretical." From the writings of Bishop Kallistos, as well as the entire book by Bishop Hilarion, it is immediately understood that they have eliminated from their consciousness the ecclesiastical tradition regarding the Life of Saint Isaac the Syrian, which they "learnt" from Wensinck and other works, saying that Abba Isaac was a Nestorian!

September 29, 2014

Abba Isaac the Syrian, the "Unjustly Accused" Saint (2 of 7)

2. What the Holy Fathers Say About Abba Isaac

Despite the lack of a day for commemorating this Saint and many others, the Church accepts them as authentic in Christ, their Life as in the Holy Spirit, their teachings as a distillation of their experience of theosis, of their "sensation in God" as Abba Isaac writes.

September 28, 2014

Abba Isaac the Syrian, the "Unjustly Accused" Saint (1 of 7)

By Protopresbyter Fr. John Photopoulos

This paper has been prompted by the book The Spiritual World of Isaac the Syrian by the bishop Hilarion Alfeyev, as well as by the three volume editon of the writings of Pseudo-Isaac published by the Sacred Monastery of the Prophet Elias in Thera titled The Ascetic Discourses of Saint Isaac the Syrian: A Translation from the Syriac. After this article there follows a letter by the author to the Abbot of the Sacred Monastery of the Prophet Elias in Thera on the issue of the cacodox writings of Pseudo-Isaac.

1. Introduction - Abba Isaac the Syrian

September 27, 2014

Metropolitan Nikodemos of Ierissos and the Discovery of the Relics of St. Akylina

By Angelo Paklaras, Theologian

The late Metropolitan Nikodemos of Ierissos (1981-2012) immediately upon his enthronement in Arnaia, was interested in establishing new parishes and erecting sacred churches to honor the local saints of his Metropolis.

His first concern from the moment he visited the parish of Saint George in Zagliveri and was informed of the life and martyrdom of Saint Akylina was to erect a church and establish a parish in her honor.

Thus through the actions of the Blessed Hierarch the second parish of Zagliveri was established by presidential decree in honor of the Holy New Martyr Akylina.

September 26, 2014

The Theology We Need Today

Technologizing Instead of Theologizing

By His Eminence Metropolitan Hierotheos
of Nafpaktos and Agiou Vlasiou

"The dogmas of the Fathers have been entirely disregarded, the apostolic traditions withered, the inventions of younger people are observed in the churches; people are therefore technologizing* when they should be theologizing; the wisdom of the world seems to be pushing aside the boasting in the Cross. Pastors are sent away, and in their place are inserted harsh wolves, who disperse Christ's flock."

(Basil the Great, Epistle 90, "To the Most Holy Brothers and Bishops in the West")

September 25, 2014

Earthquakes in the Synaxarion of the Orthodox Church

By His Eminence Metropolitan Hierotheos
of Nafpaktos and Agiou Vlasiou

In early September [1999] we experienced the consequences of the terrible earthquake in Athens, which was felt in other parts of Greece. Previously we were affected by the terrible effects of the earthquake in Turkey. The land shook for entire days while at the same time shaking the hearts of the people.

During these earthquakes we have been able to see human suffering from the loss of loved ones, and we empathized with them, seeing others lose all their property, the acquisition for which they labored tirelessly over a lifetime. Yet we were given the opportunity to also see the heroism of the men of EMAK who selflessly entered into the wreckage to retrieve lives, as well as the interest we saw in other people running out of sympathy to offer various aid. We are not indifferent also to the assistance of various rescue groups from other nations who came to help us and showed their solidarity. However, one cannot ignore the irresponsibility of the many who were responsible for the construction of the buildings that collapsed.


September 24, 2014

Saint Silouan the Athonite Resource Page

Shrines and Relics 

Protocol of the Ecumenical Patriarchate for the Recognition of Silouan the Athonite as a Saint

+ Demetrios, by the grace of God Archbishop of Constantinople, 
New Rome and Ecumenical Patriarch,

Protocol No. 823/1987

Right it is and exceeding profitable for the fulfillment of the Church that they who excelled in virtuous deeds while in the flesh, and are now departed this life, be venerated and honored and glorified and celebrated annually, and that the praise accorded to them that lived virtuously is directed to God Himself, Who is the source of every human virtue, as we are told by Gregory the Theologian. And in as much as the praise of good deeds inclines and exhorts the slothful and idle to acquire virtue, while the lovers of virtue are made even the more inspired.

September 23, 2014

Was Zechariah, the Father of John the Baptist, a High Priest?

By John Sanidopoulos

According to the entire tradition of the Church, Zechariah, the father of John the Baptist, was the High Priest who entered the Temple in Jerusalem on the Day of Atonement in September and received a revelation from an Angel of the Lord. St. Nikodemos the Hagiorite informs us that it is for this reason that the Church celebrates the conception of John the Baptist on September 23rd and his birth on June 24th, nine months after the conception. Since the Gospel of Luke tells us that Jesus was conceived six months after John was conceived, the Church celebrates the Annunciation to the Virgin Mary on March 25th and the Birth of Christ nine months later on December 25th. Forty days later, on February 2nd, Jesus was presented to the Temple. Hence, according to St. Nikodemos, the immovable liturgical calendar of Despotic Feasts of the Orthodox Church revolves around the fact that Zechariah was the High Priest who entered the Temple on the Day of Atonement in September and received a revelation from an Angel of the Lord.

September 22, 2014

Anti-Orthodox Pietism

By Archimandrite Kyrillos Kostopoulos

Pietism (pietismus) is a phenomenon of Protestant religious life, which first appeared in the 17th century in the circles of Lutheranism that sought to renew the spiritual life within Protestantism with the intention of stimulating religious sentiment. In Greece pietism appeared in the broader context of the "Europeanization" of the country.

The Icon of Saint Eustathios That Fell Without Being Touched

Eustathios Glymenopoulos as a lawyer of the Mixed Courts of Egypt

The uncle of Mr. Laskaris, Eustathios Glymenopoulos, president of the Mixed Courts of Egypt, was in Athens with his mother, who was the caretaker of Mr. Laskaris, and they were talking. She showed him the icon of Saint Eustathios on the wall and said: "Know that whatever good you have in your life was given to you from Saint Eustathios. He protects you."

September 21, 2014

The Rod of Moses in Constantinople

Rod of Moses at Topkapi Museum

By John Sanidopoulos

It is clear from the Life of Constantine by Eusebius of Ceasarea that many connections are made between Constantine and Moses, the latter being considered a model of a perfect leader and bishop. As Gregory of Nyssa says in his Life of Moses, "The great Moses is set forth as a common model for all those who look to virtue." Yet we also have a literal connection that establishes more firmly the typological connection.

Synaxis of All Saints of Thessaliotidos

On the Sunday following the Feast of the Universal Elevation of the Honorable Cross, which falls some time between September 15 and 21, the Holy Metropolis of Thessaliotis (or Thessaliotidos) and Fanariofersala, located in the Thessaly region of Greece, dedicates to All Saints of Thessaliotidos. In the choir of these Saints are included:

September 19, 2014

When St. Gabriel the Fool Visited a Synagogue, a Mosque and a Baptist Church

Fr. Gabriel often visited people who had different religious views. He tried to share grace with everyone and lead them to the true faith. He says himself:

"Once, dressed as I was in my monastic schema, I went to the Synagogue. At the entrance hung a large portrait of Moses. I venerated it. The attendees liked this. Moses was a great prophet and I gave him his due respect. I had entered as they were reading from the Bible. Few were there and they looked at me with surprise. I began to preach, and when they heard about Christ they called for their High Priest. He came out but he did not stop me. Afterwards he invited me into his office. He listened with great interest and attention to what I said about Christ. Finally, he thanked me and we bid farewell.

September 18, 2014

New Website Launched: "Daimonologia"

In my continued efforts of launching websites that focus on specific subjects for deeper exploration, a few days ago I launched the website titled Daimonologia: Hallowed Entries About Dark Culture & Thought, the Fantastic and the Supernatural. Perhaps it is not a subject many will be interested, but for those who are, it can be accessed at the following URL: An introduction was posted that explains what this website is basically about. The subjects covered in this new website will no longer be explored on this website.

For those interested, you can follow Daimonologia on Facebook and Twitter at the links below and it will soon be added to my app:

The website can also be accessed through this site for your convenience in the link at the top of this page and each page of all my websites, as well on the sidebar where the latest posting will be linked.

September 17, 2014

When Orthodox Theologians Theologize Like Protestants

Breaking the Unity of Theology

By His Eminence Metropolitan Hierotheos
of Nafpaktos and Agiou Vlasiou

In our days there is much talk about so-called "post-patristic theology". Whatever definition anyone gives to this phenomenon, one thing is certain, that it is a "theology" that alters Orthodox ecclesiastical theology and associates it with so-called "scientific" theology, which in many ways deconstructs all the basic principles of the theology of the Church.

September 16, 2014

Portions of the True Cross That Exist in the Monasteries of Mount Athos Today

"To date the most surviving portions of the True Cross belongs to Mount Athos, where they add up to 870.760 cubic millimeters, while in Rome there are 537.587, in Brussels there are 516.090, in Venice there are 445.582, in Ghent (Flemish region of Belgium in East Flanders) 436.456 and in Paris 237.731 cubic millimeters. The least amount is in England and those are in the hands of the members of the Roman Church."

(From the book: The Holy Mountain by Hieromonk Gerasimos Smyrnakis of Esphigmenou, Athens, 1903 [in Greek].)

Saint Euphemia Resource Page

St. Euphemia the Great Martyr (Feast Day - September 16 & July 11)

September 16 - Feast of St. Euphemia

Synaxarion of Saint Euphemia the Great Martyr, with the Holy Martyrs Victor and Sosthenes

Holy Great Martyr Euphemia: Epistle and Gospel Reading

The Passion of the Holy Great-Martyr Euphemia the All-Praised

Saint Euphemia the Great Martyr as a Model for our Lives

A 9th-century Salutation in Honor of St. Euphemia

St. Euphemia, St. Melitini and the Island of Lemnos

A Description of the Martyrdom of St. Euphemia Based on a Fourth Century Icon

September 15, 2014

Saint Joseph the New of Partos, Metropolitan of Timisoara (+ 1656)

St. Joseph the New of Partos (Feast Day - September 15)

Saint Joseph the New of Partos was born in 1568 in Raguza of Dalmatia (today Dubrovnik, Croatia), from a Wallachian Christian family, and was baptized as Jacob. His father was a Venetian named Giovanni Fusco, and his mother, Aikaterina, was originally from Limnos, a Greek island. More precisely, she had Morlach ancestry, which is another name for "Mavro-Vlachos" (Black Wallachian), one of the different Romanian populations spread throughout the entire Balkan peninsula, south of the Danube.

September 14, 2014

Holy Cross Resource Page

Sunday Before the Elevation of the Honorable Cross
September 14 - Universal Exaltation of the Honorable Cross
Sunday After the Elevation of the Honorable Cross
November 15 - Icon of the Theotokos of Kupyatitich
January 6 - Holy Theophany (The Blessing of the Waters with the Cross)
March 6 - The Finding of the Holy Cross By St. Helen
Great Lent - Third Sunday of Great Lent
Holy Week - Great and Holy Friday
Bright Tuesday - The Miraculous Spring of the Archangel Michael in Thasos and the Discovery of the Honorable Nail of the Savior
May 7 - Commemoration of the Honorable Cross That Appeared in the Sky Over Jerusalem in 351 A.D.
August 1-14 - Procession of the Venerable Wood of the Cross
About the Cross

The Sign of the Cross: Its Power, Meaning and Miracles

The Apostolic Tradition of Venerating the Holy Cross (St. Nektarios of Aegina)

St. John Chrysostom on the Holy Cross

St. Ephraim the Syrian on the Holy Cross

Repulsion of the Evil One and an Appeal to Christ (Poem by St. Gregory the Theologian)

Concerning the Cross and Faith (St. John of Damascus)

Let Him Deny Himself, Take Up His Cross, and Follow Me (St. Theophylact of Bulgaria)

The Cross, the Preserver of the Universe (St. John Maximovitch)

The Inevitability of Suffering (Archbishop John of Riga)

Elder Paisios on Demons and the Power of the Cross

Prerequisites For True Spirituality

The Cross as a Balance Scale of Righteousness

The Mystery of the Cross

Why Does the World Reject the Cross of Christ?

The Cross and Theology

The Mystery of the Cross and the Resurrection of Christ

Why Did Christ Suffer Crucifixion?

What Christ Accomplished on the Cross

What Does It Mean That Christ Became a Curse For Us on the Cross?

To Whom Was the Blood of Christ Offered? (St. Gregory the Theologian)

The Death of Christ in the Air Cleansed the Atmosphere of Demons (St. Athanasius the Great)

The Power of the Cross Against Demons and Magic (St. Athanasius the Great)

The Seven Phrases Christ Spoke on the Cross (St. Nikolai Velimirovich)

Why Did It Become Dark When Christ Was Crucified?

Two Powerful Old Testament Images of the Cross

The Foreshadowing of the Cross in the Old Testament According to St. Kosmas the Melodist

Salvation According to Saint Paul

Orthodoxy and the Juridical Position: The Significance of the "Antilytron"

The Juridical Mentality of the West Annuls Christ's Sacrifice

"Expiation" Rather Than "Propitiation"

The Sacrifice of Christ as "Expiation"

The Cross and Orthodox Tradition

The Honor Due to the Cross in the Canons of the Church

Liturgical Gestures

Pontian Customs for the Day of the Cross

The Orthodox Tradition of the Blessed Prozimi

The Cross in the Lives of the Saints

The Poison and the Cross: A Tale from the Life of Saint John the Theologian

Great Martyr Eustathios Plakidas With His Wife and Children

Saint Porphyrios, Bishop of Gaza

Saint Benedict and the Sign of the Holy Cross

Saint Thomas I, Patriarch of Constantinople (+ 610)

Saint Columba and the Loch Ness Monster

Saint Elias (Ilya) Muromets of the Kiev Near Caves

Saint Constantine the New Martyr of Hydra

Elder Porphyrios In the House of Prostitution

A Night of Entertainment With Elder Paisios

Miracles and Phenomena of the Cross

The Power In Crossing Ourselves

A Historical Account of the Power of the True Cross

The Healing Properties of the True Cross in Constantinople

Four Contemporary Miracles of the Holy Cross

The Kalinovka Miracle of the Bloody Crucifix in 1923

A Wondrous Vision of the True Cross in 1967

The Miracle of the Bleeding Gospel (April 27, 1989)

A Miracle of the Holy Cross in Fiji

A Miracle of the Holy Cross in India

A Miracle of the Holy Cross in Africa (Congo) 1

A Miracle of the Holy Cross in Africa (Congo) 2

A Miracle of the True Cross (video)

A Haunting In Thessaloniki

Vladimir Putin and his Miracle Cross

The Miraculous Power of the Cross and Prayer - A Scientific Study

Elder Gervasios Paraskevopoulos and the Miracle of the Cross

Moldavian Villagers See Image of Cross and Burning Candle in a Tree Cut

A Cross Wondrously Appears in the Trunk of a Tree

The Recent Appearance of a Cross in a Tree Trunk in Krini

Luminous Cross Appears In Skies Over Russia

Cross in a Church in West Ukraine Starts Bleeding (photos)

Did an "Open Eye" Miracle Recently Take Place at the Holy Sepulchre?

True Cross Relics

The Distribution of Pieces of the True Cross

Did the Cross of Christ Expose and Kill Arius?

Paulinus of Nola and the Distribution of a Relic of the True Cross

Portions of the True Cross That Exist in the Monasteries of Mount Athos Today

Vatican Cross Given By Emperor Justin II Restored

The Basilica di Santa Croce in Gerusalemme In Rome

The True History of the Palatine Cross in Notre Dame Cathedral

A Wondrous Vision of the True Cross in 1967

A Miracle of the Holy Cross in Fiji

A Miracle of the True Cross (video)

Thousands In Thessaloniki Venerate the True Cross


Other Crosses

The Iron Pectoral Cross of Saint Athanasios the Athonite

The Cross of St. Kosmas Aitolos in Polydendri

Metal Cross of St. Kosmas Aitolos Given To Metropolis of Beroia

The Curious Crucifix of Rila Monastery

German Catholic Church Returns Looted Cross to Serbia

World's Largest Stone Cross Installed in Sevastopol

Underwater Cross Set Up in Karantinnaya Bay in Sevastopol (photos & videos)

The Hidden Cross of Pontus, a True Story

Holy Cross Shrines

Monastery of the Holy Cross in Jerusalem

The Location Where the True Cross of Christ Was Found by Saint Helen

The Place Where St. Mary of Egypt Repented

The Veneration of the Holy Cross in Cyprus

Holy Cross Monastery In Omodos, Cyprus

Krustova Gora: Holy Cross Forest in Bulgaria

The Holy Mount of Grabarka in Poland

The Basilica di Santa Croce in Gerusalemme In Rome

Orthodox Cross to be Planted at Southernmost Point of America

The Cross and Popular Culture

Beauty Will Save The World

The Kenotic Theology of the Cross and Popular Culture

Making Comedy of the Cross of Christ

Movie: "Constantine and the Cross" (1961)

Andres Serrano's "Piss Christ" Destroyed By Christian Protesters

Horror Movies and the Cross - The Cross in the Very First Horror Movie from 1896  

The Cross and Persecution

Why Does the World Reject the Cross of Christ?

Evgeny Rodionov, the New Martyr of Chechnya

Coptic Christian Student Murdered By Classmates for Wearing a Cross

Muslim Group Offended By 'Christian' Tomatoes

Terrorists Behead Christian in Syria for Wearing His Cross

Why Does the World Reject the Cross of Christ?

By Protopresbyter Fr. Themistokles Mourtzanos

The Cross of Christ teaches us a great truth - that the Christian life is not easy. It hides persecution, rejection, trouble and sorrow according to the world.

The Apostle Paul, writing to the Galatians, dispels every illusion that faith in God ensures comfort and an enjoyable journey through life. "Those who want to impress people by means of the flesh are trying to compel you to be circumcised. The only reason they do this is to avoid being persecuted for the cross of Christ" (Gal. 6:12).

September 13, 2014

The Foreshadowing of the Cross in the Old Testament According to St. Kosmas the Melodist

By John Sanidopoulos

Many of the events in the Old Testament are interpreted within the tradition of the Church as a prophetic image of the events of the New Testament, and these are called "types" or "foreshadowed images".

The Fathers of the Church see the foreshadowing of the Cross of Christ in many events of the Old Testament. Indeed the hymnographers also, especially Kosmas the Melodist, who wrote the Canon for the Feast of the Exaltation of the Honorable Cross, associate these events with the Cross.

The foreshadowing of the Cross in the Old Testament can be seen in the following events:

September 12, 2014

Despite War, Saydnaya Convent in Syria Celebrates its Feast Day (photos)

The Convent of Our Lady of Saydnaya was built by Emperor Justinian in the 6th century and he designated as its primary feast to be celebrated on September 8th in honor of the Nativity of the Theotokos. Inside is housed also an icon of the Theotokos that is said to have been painted by the Apostle Luke and is responsible for many miracles throughout the centuries. Despite the civil war in Syria and the persecution of Christians there, the nuns and people of Saydnaya did not hesitate to celebrate the birth of the Mother of God as always this September 8, 2014.

From Saint Kosmas to Anastasios of Albania

Maximos Harakopoulos
August 31, 2014

United the congregation responds to the call of the Deacon and they say with one voice the "Our Father" in Albanian.

To my mind come the words of the Regional of Epirus, Alekos Kachrimanis, along the journey from Ioannina, Greece to Kolikontasi, Albania where the Monastery with the grave of Kosmas the Aitolos is.

In 1991, when Archbishop Anastasios liturgized for the first time as Patriarchal Exarch in Albania, with the mission of resurrecting the Albanian Church from the ashes, many Albanians were sitting cross-legged in the pews smoking and chatting.

The Honoring of St. Kosmas is an Old Tradition for Albanians

The 19th century fresco of Saint Kosmas in the monastery dedicated to him.

After attacking Archbishop Anastasios, after attacking the people that work for the Orthodox Autocephalous Church of Albania, after spreading all sorts of slander and lies about the Orthodox canons and statutes, after defaming the history of faith, it is now the turn of our saints. Specifically, most recently the articles that have appeared in certain media, in which they speak evil about one of the most revered saints among the Albanians and beyond – St. Kosmas (martyred in 1779).

September 11, 2014

What Saint Porphyrios of Kavsokalyva Said About Old Calendarism

Venerable Porphyrios of Kavsokalyva said the following about Old Calendarism:

"If you are going to live in the world, follow the calendar of the Church, that you may not bring turmoil to the people, unless you want to live on Mount Athos."*

An Orthodox Interpretation of the Results of Terrorist Actions on 9/11

By His Eminence Metropolitan Hierotheos
of Nafpaktos and Agiou Vlasiou

It is known that journalists report on contemporary events, and they analyze them according to their beliefs and their ideological positions. Therefore they offer knowledge, which is then transmitted and creates for many a pseudonymous knowledge of things. Of course, later, after a lapse of many decades and centuries, history corrects things a bit. However, the personal approach to these events, even if it is incorrect, creates many problems.

September 10, 2014

A Hymn of Praise to Faith (St. Nektarios of Pentapolis)

By St. Nektarios of Pentapolis

Faith! Divine Gift, fruit of Divine Revelation, knowledge of mysteries, heavenly wisdom, teacher of divine truths, ladder of heaven and earth, link of God and man, evidence of divine friendship and love, expression of the transmission of heavenly gifts.

Metr. Mesogaia: "I Want to Die and for My Metropolis to be Found Empty"

During Great Vespers for the feast of the Nativity of the Theotokos on September 8, 2014 in the Church of Panagia Eleousa in Legrena Sounio, His Eminence Metropolitan Nicholas of Mesogaia and Lavriotiki was given a gift of an episcopal omophorion and epitrachelion from the parish priest Fr. Irenaios Georgopoulos as a thank you for his visit. His Eminence responded to this generous gift as follows:

September 9, 2014

Parents Build Church Where Their Child Was Killed

September 4, 2014

About a year ago in Kyrtoni of the municipality of Lokroi there was a tragic event. Hunters believed the late Anargyros Tsampas, who was on his own property, to be prey and fatally injured him.

The Miraculous Icon of Saint Anna in Bistrita Monastery

The icon of Saint Anna was donated by Roman Emperor Manuel II Palaiologos (1350 - 1425) and his wife Anna to Voivode Alexander the Good of Moldavia, in gratitude for the hospitality he gave to his son Andronikos while in Moldavia.

This icon has performed many miracles.

Saints Joachim and Anna Resource Page

September 8 - The Nativity of the Theotokos

September 9 - Synaxis of Sts. Joachim and Anna

December 9 - The Conception of Saint Anna
July 25 - Dormition of Saint Anna

Relics and Miracles


Shrines and Icons



September 8, 2014

Nativity of the Theotokos Resource Page


Anna, all mothers truly you surpassed,
Until your daughter should become your Mother.
Anna brought into the light on the eighth of this month God’s own Mother. 
About the Feast 
Miracles of September 8th 
Immaculate Conception?