December 16, 2018

Reflection for the Twenty-Eighth Sunday after Pentecost (St. Theophan the Recluse)

Homily for the Twenty-Eighth Sunday after Pentecost
[Col. 1:12-18; Luke 14:16-24]

By St. Theophan the Recluse

"Many are called, but few are chosen" (Matt. 22:14). All Christians are called; chosen are those Christians who believe and live in a Christian manner. In the first Christian times preaching called to faith; we are called by our birth from Christians and upbringing among Christians. And glory be to God! We pass half the road, that is, entrance into Christianity and the taking root of its principles in our heart from our very childhood, without any labour. It would seem that our faith should be all the stronger, and our life all the more correct throughout all the time that follows. It was this way; but from a certain point in time it has started to be different. Unchristian principles are permitted in our schools which ruin young people, and unchristian customs have entered into society, which corrupt them after leaving school. If according to the word of God there always have been only a few chosen, it is no surprise that in our time there are even fewer of them; such is the spirit of the age — antichristian! What will be next? If our manner of education and social customs are not changed, true Christianity will weaken more and more, and at last will entirely end; only the name of Christian will remain, but the spirit of Christianity will not be there. The spirit of the world will fill everything. What is one to do? Pray…