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Monday, May 31, 2010

Daily Vitamins for Spiritual Growth V.3: Day by Day with Jesus through the Church Year

By Anthony M. Coniaris

I just got it yesturday at Church. I like it alot.
Daily Vitamins for Spiritual Growth

Christ is in our Midst!

Morning Prayers!

As seen from as well as:
A Pocket Prayer Book for Orthodox Christians (or what some of us call The little red book)

"The Trisagion Prayers

In the Name of the
Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

O heavenly King, O
Comforter, the Spirit of truth, who art in all places and fillest all things;
Treasury of good things and Giver of life: Come and dwell in us and cleanse us
from every stain, and save our souls, O gracious Lord.

Holy God, Holy
Mighty, Holy Immortal: have mercy on us. (Thrice)

Glory to the Father,
and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: now and ever and unto ages of ages.

All-holy Trinity, have mercy on us. Lord, cleanse us from our
sins. Master, pardon our iniquities. Holy God, visit and heal our infirmities
for thy Name's sake.

Lord, have mercy. (Thrice)

Glory to the
Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: now and ever, and unto ages of
ages. Amen.

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy Name; thy
kingdom come; thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day
our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass
against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

Through the prayers of our holy Fathers, Lord Jesus Christ our God, have
mercy on us and save us. Amen."

The Creed

I believe in one God, the
Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and

And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the
Only-begotten, Begotten of the Father before all worlds, Light of Light, Very
God of Very God, Begotten, not made; of one essence with the Father, by whom all
things were made:

Who for us men and for our salvation came down from
heaven, and was incarnate of the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary, and was made

And was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate, and suffered
and was buried;

And the third day He rose again, according to the

And ascended into heaven, and sitteth at the right hand of
the Father;

And He shall come again with glory to judge the quick and
the dead, Whose kingdom shall have no end.

And I believe in the Holy
Spirit, the Lord, and Giver of Life, Who proceedeth from the Father, Who with
the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified, Who spake by the

And I believe in One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church.

I acknowledge one Baptism for the remission of sins.

I look for
the Resurrection of the dead.

And the Life of the world to come.

A Prayer of St. Basil the Great

We bless
thee, O God most high and Lord of mercies, who ever workest great and mysterious
deeds for us, glorious, wonderful, and numberless; who providest us with sleep
as a rest from our infirmities and as a repose for our bodies tired by labor. We
thank thee that thou hast not destroyed us in our transgressions, but in thy
love toward mankind thou hast raised us up, as we lay in despair, that we may
glorify thy Majesty. We entreat thine infinite goodness, enlighten the eyes of
our understanding and raise up our minds from the heavy sleep of indolence; open
our mouths and fill them with thy praise, that we may unceasingly sing and
confess thee, who art God glorified in all and by all, the eternal Father, the
Only-Begotten Son, and the all-holy and good and life-giving Spirit: now and
ever, and unto ages of ages. Amen.

Here may be added your own private devotions and intercessions, using your own words or the "Occasional Prayers". When you have finished, conclude with this prayer:

Through the prayers of our holy Fathers, Lord Jesus Christ our God, have mercy upon us and save us. Amen.

I would like to thank John Hogg for helping me improve my prayer life.

Christ is in our Midst!

A Beautiful Confession!

This confession is one by St. Tikhon of Zadonsk as seen from the blog Traditional Orthodoxy.

"Since You came into the world for all, o Savior,
therefore You came for me, for I am one of all. you came into the world to save
sinners; therefore You came to save me also, for I am one of the sinners. You
came to find and to save him who was lost; therefore You came to seek me too,
for I am one of the lost. O Lord, O my God and Creator! I should have come to
You as a transgressor of Your law. I should have fallen at Your feet, cast
myself down before You, humbly begging forgiveness, pleading with You and
craving Your mercy. But You Yourself have come to me, wretched and
good-for-nothing servant that I am; my Lord has come to me, His enemy and
apostate; my Master has come and has bestowed His love of mankind upon me.
Listen, my soul: God has come to us; Our Lord has visited us. For my sake He was
born of the Virgin Mary, He Who is born of the Father before all time. For my
sake He was wrapped in swaddling clothes, He Who covers heaven with the clouds
and vests Himself with robes of light. For my sake He was placed in the lowly
manger, He Whose throne is the heavens and Whose feet rest upon earth. For my
sake He was fed with His mother's milk, He Who feeds all creatures. For my sake
He was held in His mother's arms, He Who is borne by the Cherubim and holds all
creatures in His embrace. For my sake He was circumcized according to the law,
He Who is maker of the Law. For my sake, He Who is unseen became visible and
lived among men, He Who is my God. My God became one like me, like a man; the
Word became flesh, and my Lord, the Lord of Glory, took for my sake the form of
a servant and lived upon earth and walked upon earth, He Who is the King of
Heaven. He labored, worked miracles, conversed with men, was like a servant, He
Who is the Lord of all."

To read the rest please visit Traditional Orthodoxy.

Christ is in our Midst!

The Apostles Fast

Wine and Oil

Fasting Rules for the Apostles' Fast

Christ is in our Midst!
Sunday, May 30, 2010

How to do an Orthodox Bible Study / Outreach! pt. 1

I don't know, this is something I am trying to figure out. But I have some ideas. So far I have experienced two different kinds of Bible Studies done by Orthodox Christians, but they were mostly based on a protestant modal and ethos. I would like to draw more from the richness of the Church itself and it's traditions for I learned a long time ago in my protestant years that what you use to draw people will be what you need to keep doing in order to keep people. And so, I would like to use what the Church already has and does. That way, if we draw them by what the Church already does, then we will be able to keep them by what the Church already does. There will be no need for a bate and switch.......something common in some protestant circles.

Also, I don't know if I should call it a Bible study, for I want it to be more wholistic. If I believe in Prima Scriptura and not Sola Scriptura then it needs to be more than just a mere Bible Study. It needs to be a Bible Study / Liturgical Study / Church History Study.

More thoughts on this later.....I gotta eat!

Christ is in our midst!

Seminary Life

Seminary Life from J norm on Vimeo.

Christ is in our Midst!

Unbroken Circle

Part 1:

Unbroken Circle! from J norm on Vimeo.

Part 2:

For those that don't know, the name came from the book:
An Unbroken Circle: Linking Ancient African Christianity to the African-American Experience

Christ is in our Midst!

Alex Fecanin

Christ is in our Midst!
Friday, May 28, 2010

Orthodox Episcopal Assembly

To see what's going on, check out their facebook page by clicking on the image above.

Bishop Basil and the Episcopal Assembly

Play Audio

Unravelling the Episcopal Assembly

Play Audio

Bishop Basil Reflects on the First Episcopal Assembly of North and Central America (click to see video)

Christ is in our Midst!
Wednesday, May 26, 2010

His Beatitude, Metropolitan JONAH

His Beatitude, Metropolitan JONAH from J norm on Vimeo.

I don't have the main lecture, but I have some of the other ones.

Christ is in our Midst!

The Church and the Gates of Hell

Some things I thought were interesting from the forum here and here.

Fr. Patrick posted this:

Archbishop Kenrick, who was one of America's
extraordinary bishops, was opposed to the doctrine of
papal infallibilty and at the First Vatican Council
in 1869 he voted against it. He wanted to deliver
a speech against the proposed doctrine at the Council
but instead he ceased to attend the Council meetings.
He published his speech in Naples the following year.

It is important because he lists the five different
patristic interpretations of Matthew 16:18.

Let's look at how the Church Fathers line up over this verse:

1...."That St. Peter is the Rock" is taught
by seventeen (17) Fathers

2....That the whole Apostolic College is the Rock,
represented by Peter as its chief,
is taught by eight (8.) Church Fathers

3....That St. Peter's faith is the Rock,
is taught by forty-four (44) Church Fathers

4....That Christ is the Rock,
is taught by sixteen Fathers (16)

5....That the rock is the whole body of the faithful.
Archbp. Kendrick gives no figure.

Archbishop Kendrick summarises

"If we are bound to follow the greater number
of Fathers in this matter, then we must hold
for certain that the word "Petra" means not Peter
professing the Faith, but the faith professed by Peter."

This is an important point by Kendrick since one of the
RC Councils (I need to check which one) laid down the
regulation that a preponderance of patristic consensus
is needed for the promulgation of any dogma.)

You can look this up and check that I have it
accurately in Friedrich, Docum ad illust. Conc. Vat. 1, pp. 185-246

As to who Archbishop Kenrick was.
Please see the Catholic Encyclopedia "

And in the other thread a post by Asteriktos and another by Melodist interested me:

By Melodist

"St John Chrysostom Homily 52 on Matthew

He added this, “And I say unto thee, Thou art Peter, and upon this rock will I build my Church;” that is, on the faith of his confession. Hereby He signifies that many were now on the point of believing, and raises his spirit, and makes him a shepherd. “And the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.” “And if not against it, much more not against me. So be not troubled because thou art shortly to hear that I shall be betrayed and crucified.”

Then He mentions also another honor. “And I also will give thee the keys of the heavens.” But what is this, “And I also will give thee?” “As the Father hath given thee to know me, so will I also give thee.”

And He said not, “I will entreat the Father” (although the manifestation of His authority was great, and the largeness of the gift unspeakable), but, “I will give thee.” What dost Thou give? tell me. “The keys of the heavens, that whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth, shall be bound in Heaven, and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth, shall be loosed in Heaven.” How then is it not “His to give to sit on His right hand, and on His left,” when He saith, “I will give thee”?

Seest thou how He, His own self, leads Peter on to high thoughts of Him, and reveals Himself, and implies that He is Son of God by these two promises? For those things which are peculiar to God alone, (both to absolve sins, and to make the church in capable of overthrow in such assailing waves, and to exhibit a man that is a fisher more solid than any rock, while all the world is at war with him), these He promises Himself to give; as the Father, speaking to Jeremiah, said, He would make him as “a brazen pillar, and as a wall;” but him to one nation only, this man in every part of the world.

St Augustine

This same is the holy Church, the one Church, the true Church, the catholic Church, fighting against all heresies: fight, it can: be fought down, it cannot. As for heresies, they went all out of it, like as unprofitable branches pruned from the vine: but itself abideth in its root, in its Vine, in its charity. “The gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”,xvi,18#highlight

One patristic quote that may be of interest to understanding a real difference in how this is understood between Orthodox and Protestants.

Cyprian of Carthage
Our Lord, whose precepts and admonitions we ought to observe, describing the honour of a bishop and the order of His Church, speaks in the Gospel, and says to Peter: “I say unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock will I build my Church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” Thence, through the changes of times and successions, the ordering of bishops and the plan of the Church flow onwards; so that the Church is founded upon the bishops, and every act of the Church is controlled by these same rulers.

By Arteriktos,

Fwiw, the quotes I listed in this thread may be of some interest to you...

" like manner each one of those who are the authors of any evil opinion has become the architect of a certain gate of Hades; but those who co-operate with the teaching of the architect of such things are servants and stewards, who are the bond-servants of the evil doctrine which goes to build up impiety." - Origen, Commentary on the Gospel of Matthew, 12, 12

"the gates of hell are the belief or rather the misbelief of heretics." - St. John Cassian, The Seven Books on the Incarnation of the Lord (Against Nestorius), 3, 14

"the gates of hell, the mouths of heretics, the machines of demons-for they will attack-will not prevail. They will take up arms but they will not conquer" - St. John of Damascus, Homily on the Transfiguration

"all the sects are truly 'gates of hell,' but 'They will not prevail against the rock,' that is, the truth." - St. Epiphanius of Salamis

"I suppose the gates of hell to mean vice and sin, or at least the doctrines of heretics by which men are ensnared and drawn into hell." - St. Jerome

"He said that 'the gates of hell shall not prevail against the Church,' even though persecuted, and that no one shall quench the preaching of the Gospel: and the experience of events bears witness to this prediction..." - St. John Chrysostom; Homily 21 on Hebrews

"The Church is unshaken, and ‘the gates of hell shall not prevail against it,’ according to the voice of the Saviour, for it has Him for a foundation" - St. Cyril of Alexandria, Commentary on Zacharias

"For the Church cannot be moved because it is known to have been founded on that most solid rock, namely, Christ the Lord" - Cassiodorus, Expositions in the Psalms, Psalm 45

"neither against the rock on which Christ builds the church, nor against the church will the gates of Hades prevail [...] but the church, as a building of Christ who built His own house wisely upon the rock, is incapable of admitting the gates of Hades which prevail against every man who is outside the rock and the church, but have no power against it." - Origen, Commentary on the Gospel of Matthew, 12, 11

"Christ, you see, built his Church not on a man but on Peter's confession. What is Peter's confession? 'You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.' There's the rock for you, there's the foundation, there's where the Church has been built, which the gates of the underworld cannot conquer" - St. Augustine

"Faith, then, is the foundation of the Church, for it was not said of Peter's flesh, but of his faith, that 'the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.' But his confession of faith conquered hell." - St. Ambrose of Milan

"A belief that the Son of God is Son in name only, and not in nature, is not the faith of the Gospels and of the Apostles...whence I ask, was it that the blessed Simon Bar-Jona confessed to Him, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God?...And this is the rock of confession whereon the Church is built...that Christ must be not only named, but believed, the Son of God. This faith is that which is the foundation of the Church; through this faith the gates of hell cannot prevail against her." - St. Hilary of Poitiers

"How powerful is Peter's faith and his confession that Christ is the only-begotten God, the word, the true Son of God, and not merely a creature. Though he saw God on earth clothed in flesh and blood, Peter did not doubt, for he was willing to receive what 'flesh and blood have not revealed to you.' Moreover he recognized the consubstantial and coeternal branch of God, thereby glorifying that uncreated root, that root without beginning which had revealed the truth to him. Peter believedthat Christ was one and the same deity with the Father; and so he was called blessed by him who alone is the blessed Lord. Upon this rock the Church was built, the Church which the gates of hell-that is, the arguments of heretics-will not overcome." - St. Didymus the Blind

"The first of the Apostles, that firm rock upon which the church of God is built, so that the gates of hell, that is to say the heresies and heresiarchs, will not prevail against it." - St. Epiphanius

"These things therefore being settled with all accuracy, we, bearing in remembrance the promises made respecting the holy Church, and who it was that said that the gates of hell should not prevail against her, that is, the deadly tongues of heretics..." - Fourth Ecumenical Council

"the foundation of the Church should prevail against all heresies. The day will fail me sooner than the names of heretics and the different sects, yet against all is this general faith-that Christ is the Son of God, and eternal from the Father, and born of the Virgin Mary." - St. Ambrose of Milan

"I suppose the gates of hell to mean vice and sin..." - St. Jerome

"...flee from corruption, into which, as you know, many have fallen. Forsake the path which leads to the gates of hell." - Monk Jonas

"Thou hast shown us the way of resurrection, having broken the gates of hell, and brought to nought him who had the power of death-the devil." - St. Gregory of Nyssa

"Peter's key is Peter's faith, by which he opened heaven, by which, secure, he penetrated hades, by which, fearless, he walked on water. For so great is the power of apostolic faith, that all elements lie open to it: the angelic gates are not closed to it, nor do the gates of Hell prevail against it, nor do floods of water sink it. That key itself, which we call faith, let us see how firm and solid it is. I judge that it was produced by the work of 12 artisans; for the holy faith was comprehended in the creed of the 12 apostles, who, like skilled artisans working in concert, produced the key by their understanding. For I call the creed itself the key, which causes the shades of the devil to draw back, that the light of Christ may come. The hidden sins of conscience are brought into the open so that the clear works of justification may shine. Therefore this key must be shown to our brothers in order that they also as followers of Peter may learn to unlock hades and to open heaven." - Maximus of Turin, Sermon 28

"Notwithstanding, these gates have a certain power by which they gain the mastery over some who do not resist and strive against them; but they are overcome by others who, because they do not turn aside from Him who said, 'I am the door,' have rased from their soul all the gates of Hades. And this also we must know that as the gates of cities have each their own names, in the same way the gates of Hades might be named after the species of sins; so that one gate of Hades is called "fornication," through which fornicators go, and another "denial," through which the deniers of God go down into Hades." - Origen, Commentary on the Gospel of Matthew, 12, 12

"Shall ye be illuminated with such eyes as are only with greediness cast on those things that lead headlong to vices (that is to say), to the gates of hell?" - Gildas

"the church, as a building of Christ who built His own house wisely upon the rock, is incapable of admitting the gates of Hades which prevail against every man who is outside the rock and the church, but have no power against it." "Now, if you attend to the saying, 'Many, I say unto you, shall seek to enter in and shall not be able,' you will understand that this refers to those who boast that they are of the church, but live weakly and contrary to the word. Of those, then, who seek to enter in, those who are not able to enter will not be able to do so, because the gates of Hades prevail against them; but in the case of those against whom the gates of Hades will not prevail, those seeking to enter in will be strong, being able to do all things, in Christ Jesus, who strengtheneth them." - Origen, Commentary on the Gospel of Matthew, 12, 11-12

"Your rock is your deed, your rock is your mind. Upon this rock your house is built. Your rock is your faith, and faith is the foundation of the Church. If you are a rock, you will be in the Church, because the Church is on a rock. If you are in the Church the gates of hell will not prevail against you" - St. Ambrose of Milan

"the gates of Zion may be conceived as opposed to the gates of death [...]And let us take heed in regard to each sin, as if we were descending into some gate of death if we sin; but when we are lifted up from the gates of death let us declare all the praises of the Lord in the gates of the daughter of Zion; as, for example, in one gate of the daughter of Zion-that which is called self-control-we will declare by our self-control the praises of God; and in another which is called righteousness, by righteousness we will declare the praises of God; and, generally, in all things whatsoever of a praiseworthy character with which we are; occupied, in these we are at some gate of the daughter of Zion, declaring at each gate some praise of God" - Origen, Commentary on the Gospel of Matthew, 12, 13

"In Thy saints, who in every age have been well pleasing to Thee, is truly Thy faith; for Thou hast founded the world on Thy faith, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it." - St. Athanasius"

Christ is in our Midst!
Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Meeting David and his awesome family!

His Blog:

His Youtube channel:

Christ is in our Midst!

My Parish!

Christ is in our Midst!
Saturday, May 22, 2010

Some Old Friends of Mine

I've known them since my days at Tuskegee University, back then they went to Morehouse, and we met through a college christian ministry called Campus Outreach. They would have retreats in both Georgia and Alabama, and students from different schools would be there. And so that's how we met. Sometimes we would drive to ATL to see them, which was about a 90 minute drive from T.U. on Interstate 85. They are good peoples, and they make positive music/hiphop/rap. It's been 5 years since I last saw them in person (in Atlanta), but they seem to be doing well. This video is off their new album that just came out last March. They are awesome, and their music is too.

The Remnant: (Know This)

I've known Sho since my sophmore year at Tuskegee University. Back then we use to argue alot, but he's real cool peoples! He was really involved with Campus Outreach back in those days. I never was really a part of it. I just went to the Bible studies, ate the food, and went on most of the small retreats. But he was actually discipled through it. He also found his future wife through the outreach. He later moved to Texas where he finished school and where his older brother was, and recently he just moved to Atlanta to help plant a church. I haven't seen him in person in ages...well years, but I still see him online, but you know, it's not the same. But this video below is off his new album that just dropped last March as well. The Album is called Lions and Liars.

Sho Baraka: (We can be more)

Believin Stephen and Me at the HolyCultureRadio EastCoast gathering back in like 2005. And yes, I had a gotee back then.
Tagged Photos  Believin Stephen  jnorm

I don't know lil Steve all that well, but he's from Pittsburgh, and he's cool peoples. He lived in Philly for alot of years, but recently returned back to the Burgh:

Most of the other christian rappers I mostly know from being online or just meeting them at certain events, but I don't really know them know them.

Inlove Jnorm

I just went to the library

To get this book sent to me. I know some Library somewhere has it, and when I get it I'm gonna xerox a bunch of pages for this sucker is hard to find. Oh, in the Library an older western European American male asked me if I stole my laptop. If he was younger I would have responded disrespectfully. But I simply let it slide and told him in a slow soft voice that I didn't steal it. He looked at me, smiled, then walked away. I'm shocked that someone his age would actually be bold enough to confront me like that. Usually people his age (in the rust belt) seem scared of me.

Free Choice in Saint Maximus the Confessor by Joseph P. Farrell
Friday, May 21, 2010

Michael and Calvin

Josiah Henson by Fr. Moses Berry

This was at the Ancient Christianity Conference in Anniston Alabama. Fr. Moses talks about the real Uncle Tom Josiah Henson and why we should be proud of the term itself.
Thursday, May 20, 2010

History of Christianity 3: Age of the Martyrs

David of ( Pious Fabrications ) did another excellent job in his History of Christianity Series. This is from his Youtube Channel:


A Critique of the Book Pagan Christianity!

This book is By Albert McIlhenny (a traditional Anglican)

The New Restorationists: A Critique of Frank Viola and George Barna's "Pagan Christianity?"
[product thumbnail]

I just downloaded the pdf for $3.99. It is an awesome read. I have had several emails about when I was going to give a response to the book, I planned on doing something in the future after I'm done working on what I'm doing now in regards to something else. But Albert is already doing an excellent job as it is. It took him a year, all on his free time to trace the quotes and sources of the book, and so he is already on it. He is writing a larger book about the issue, and so, he just put this smaller version out now. But it's awesome! Buy one for all your friends who have Viola and Barna's book. If I ever get around to writing something about it, I will most definately use Albert as one of my main sources.

Also, show them the new set of videos Albert put out as well:

Viola, Barna, and the Church 1: Introduction

Viola, Barna, and the Church 2: Basic Misconceptions

Viola, Barna, and the Church 3: Domus Ecclesiae

Viola, Barna, and the Church 4: Constantine

Viola, Barna, and the Church 5: Basilicas

Viola, Barna, and the Church 6: Gothic Cathedrals

Viola, Barna, and the Church 7: Liturgy

Viola, Barna, and the Church 8: Authority

Viola, Barna, and the Church 9: Eucharist

Viola, Barna, and the Church 10: Conclusion

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Saint Luke Orthodox Mission

If you are ever in Anniston Alabama on the weekend, go visit Saint Luke Orthodox Mission. When the mission first started it was either in an office or a smaller building, but they eventually moved into a bigger home. The housechurch is extremely beautiful, and the people are nice too.

A Beautiful Alaskan Story

Deacon Andrew Ishmael of Saint Herman Theological Seminary from J norm on Vimeo.

I may not be able to post most of the larger videos in there entirety. They are just too huge in Gigs to fit. I might be able to post a few minutes of them, but anything over a Gig just won't fit on Vimeo. I'm sorry

The Picture

Christ is Ascended!
Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Deacon Andrew Ishmael of Saint Herman Theological Seminary

Christ is Ascended!

Conversating with Mr. Perry

Mr. Perry and I spoke about our conversion stories.

Christ is Ascended!

In Anniston Alabama at the Ancient Christianity Conference

Just having a little fun!

Christ is Ascended!

Photius and Moe!

Christ is Ascended!

Amazing Grace, well parts of it

I was outside eating when they first started to sing it. And so, I got the last end of it on tape. Sorry.

Christ is Ascended!

The awsome choir at Saint Luke Orthodox Mission

Christ is Ascended!

Ancient Christianity Conference

Christ is Ascended!

Some thoughts by Fr. Monk Cosmas Shartz

I have a friend who would like to be a monk, and I know others might want to be one as well, and so I wanted to ask Fr. Monk Cosmas to share his thoughts about not only how to become a monk, but also how to prepare oneself in the process.

Christ is Ascended!
Sunday, May 16, 2010

Sub Deacon Paul

I didn't have enough memory to record it all, and so I'm sorry for that. I will have to ask around to see who has the whole thing.

Christ is Ascended!
Friday, May 14, 2010

Subdeacon Robert & Fr. Roman Star

Anniston Alabama

It's been 5 years, not 8. I was tired, and so I forgot.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

I Want Jesus to Walk With Me

Christ is Risen!
Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Why Fr. Nathan is leaving Old Catholicism

An update from Father Nathan:

Father Nathan needs your help and support!

Christ is Risen!
Tuesday, May 11, 2010

An interesting rant by biblicalia


Christ is Risen!

Chapel: Federica Mathewes-Green, Feb. 22, 2010

Christ is Risen!

Frederica Mathewes-Green on the Holy Eucharist

Albert is a traditional Anglican(Episcopal) and he was deeply moved by something Frederica said in one of her books.

Christ is Risen!

I'm Feeling Better Now

I'm no longer feeling like Darth Vader:

After talking with him, I found out that he pretty much read his way out of faith.....not just out of Orthodoxy and christianity in general.....but out of any faith in any religion. He was already struggling with doubt for some years, but the two main influences that seemed to help push him faster in the direction of caving in to his temptations of doubt were books by two authors in the area of psychology and Religion. It seems as if the bias of the authors was soley from an atheistic or philosophical naturalistic perspective. And he totally ate it up. I tried to talk him out of it yesturday, but to no avail, and so, my main weapon is gonna have to be prayer.

I'm glad I had the chance to speak to him, for I am no longer upset. It is what it is, and we all have to move on. The lesson to be learned from this is that new converts....but anyone really, but new converts in general should not read bad books if they are struggling in that area. If your temptation is atheism......then why read atheistic books?

What one should do is read stuff to help make their faith stable and strong before reading things that will destroy it. Especially if your temptation is atheism/agnosticism. Also, I no longer feel uncomfortable in the inevitable clash between us in the blog world if he decides to start a new blog to advocate his atheism/agnosticism. I told him not to burn his bridges in the christian world for it is only a matter of time before he feels ready to speak out about his views online(blog). When that happens, I will be ready for the war, and I will be more comfortable then in letting people know who this person is that I refuse to name.

Watch what you eat(read)!

Christ is Risen!
Monday, May 10, 2010

Conversions to Orthodoxy in Turkey

As seen from the blog Notes on Arab Orthodoxy:

"A –°onversation with two Orthodox Turks, Ahmet and Necla
In Turkey, which is the canonical territory of the Patriarchate of Constantinople, there are very few Greek parishioners left. The Orthodox community has been supplemented to some degree by Russians who have taken up permanent residence there. However, there are also some Turks who have become Orthodox in the Patriarchate. Lately their numbers have grown. Orthodox literature is being printed for them in Turkish, and articles about the newly-converted are being published. Ahmet and Necla are two of the thousand or so Turks who have changed their faith; and unlike others, they do not hide this at all. They related their stories to one Bulgarian website, ”Dveri na Pravoslavieto”—their spiritual searches which led them to Orthodoxy, and what it means to be a Christian in Turkey. We offer the text of this conversation to the readers of"

To read the rest, please visit Notes on Arab Orthodoxy.

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The Orthodox Church in America

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Sunday, May 9, 2010

Faith Seeking Understanding: Orthodoxy and Evangelical Renewal

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Proof of Miracles


This is from the podcast Frederica Here and Now by Kh. Frederica Mathewes-Green

As seen from the website:
"Frederica shares a email exchange in which she discusses miracles mixed with the demonic versus those which come through the love and presence of God."

Play Audio

You can also hear her most recent podcast by calling: 1-(857)-488-4644

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Saturday, May 8, 2010

I'm hurt and a little depressed at the moment

lecture 1
A Picture of me at a conference, I'm not gonna show a picture of my friend.

I found out a couple days ago that a friend of mine finally caved in to the doubts and confusion that he had for some years now. It hurts man, it really does. I met his girlfriends, grandmother, parents, and other relatives and the whole situation just sucks.

At the moment, all I can do is hear him out and listen. I'm too out of it emotionally to argue with him. My plan is to try and help him slow down and sit on it for a few more years, as well as to continue to hang around people of faith as much as possible for I know of others who were in a similar situation and most of them came back to faith. Well, some of them still struggle with issues of doubt, and so this may be a life long struggle for some.

But whatever the case may be, I will not give up on him.

Lord Have Mercy!

Ante-Nicene Fathers

The link:

It has all 10 books in the series online.

I'm gonna have to find a spot for this link somewhere. Hmm?

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Friday, May 7, 2010

The Relationship of the African Orthodox Church to the Orthodox Churches

Something Fr. Oliver wrote:

This link below is to orrologion's blog:

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Thursday, May 6, 2010

David's new blog

It's called Patristic Lucubrations!

Check it out! It's really good!

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I had to delete a couple links

Yo! Homey, we will always be friends no matter what. Just know that!

Lord Have Mercy!

Perry's bout with Liberal Episcopalians!

As seen from his blog Energetic Procession:
The Episcopalians Strike Back!

It's an awsome read! It really is!

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Judgment and Justification in Early Judaism and the Apostle Paul

Hendrickson Publishing

Google Books

This book stood out to me when I was watching KabanetheChristian's youtube video about what he got for christmas. I'm going to have to put this on my books to get list.....a very long list, but I'm gonna bump this one up to the top. The author of the book is part of the New Perspective on Paul group or NPP. The traditional Calvinists, Reformed, and Lutherans all hate them to no end.

But yeah, this book might be very very interesting, and so hopefully I will be able to get it in July. Until then, I'm gonna read what I can of it on google books.

For those that don't know about the New Perspective on Paul (a movement within protestant circles) here is an article by Christianity Today: "What Did Paul Really Mean?
'New perspective' scholars argue that we need, well, a new perspective on justification by faith"

I tend to think the term "Justification by Sola Fide" is misleading as well as unbiblical when one looks at both the Biblical and Patristic evidence (over all). Therefore I tend to believe in what I term "Prima Fide" Meaning Faith maybe primary but it's not by itself nor is it over the Church, but lived in the Church and judged by her.....just as Scripture is Primary and not by itself nor is it over the Church, but exist within Her and is interpreted correctly by Her.

To know what I mean by Prima Scriptura go here:

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Wednesday, May 5, 2010



As seen from Orthodox Outlet for Dogmatic Enquiries:


The unity of the Church in the
Divine Eucharist and the Bishop as a fundamental historical question


Throughout the entire period of the first three centuries, unity was
bound up at the deepest level with the faith, the prayers and the activities of
the Church. St John's Gospel reflects this fact when it presents the unity of
the Church as an agonized petition in the prayer of the Lord.1 The Acts of the
Apostles expresses the same reality when they emphatically stress unity as the
element characteristic of the Church's life in her first years2 while the
existence of a "theology of unity" at a period as early as that of St Paul's
Epistles3 cannot be interpreted otherwise than as an indication of the
importance which the Church from the beginning attached to her unity. During the
years following apostolic times, the Church regarded her unity as a matter of
constant concern and an object of vehement faith. The texts of the so-called
Apostolic Fathers present the unity of the Church as an object of teaching, and
something for which they struggled against every divisive force.4 Around the end
of the second century, Irenaeus attempts in a work especially devoted to the
subject to show that the Church was and has been preserved as one,5 and that
unity constitutes the necessary condition for her existence.6 A few generations
later, St Cyprian devotes a special study to the subject of church unity7 while
in the various creedal documents, unity early assumes the character of an
article of faith.8

Once one sees the tremendous importance of unity for
the Church of the first three centuries, the question arises for history - was
this unity a historical reality, or was there simply an unfulfilled desire and a
nostalgic quest for a unity which proved in reality a perpetually and
increasingly unattainable ideal? As we shall see below, almost all modern
historiography has contributed through its various theses to a picture of the
Church of the first three centuries as a society from the first deeply divided
in such a way as to create the impression that schism was an innate part of the
Church organism.

There are thus two aspects to the overall theme of the
unity of the Church. One concerns the ideal or the teaching of the early Church
concerning her unity. The other concerns what the Church experienced as unity
during the period under examination. The first theme may be characterized as the
theology of unity as it was conceived and formulated by the early Church. The
second constitutes the history of unity, as it can be reconstructed from study
of the sources with the aid of objective historical research.

To read the book please visit Orthodox Outlet for Dogmatic Enquiries.

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What KabaneTheChristian got for Christmas

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Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Dr. Jeffrey Macdonald

Thanks to David of Pious Fabrications I found out about him. And I am enjoying his lectures more and more. I think he should write a book about the 7 councils. We are in need of a good scholarly Orthodox alternative to the Roman Catholic one done by Dr. Leo Donald Davis.

We need one from our own perspective, and he would be great for the job. Also, why isn't he on Ancientfaith radio? It would be awsome if he had his own podcast too!

His website:

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Part 2
Monday, May 3, 2010

The Collapse of Evangelicalism

This is Albert(a traditional Anglican) talking about one of Imonks(memory eternal) blog posts from either last year or the year before.

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The Future of Anglicanism

This is Albert's(A traditional Anglican and lay apologist) thoughts about the issue:

About Albert's Parish and what they may or may not do:
Part 1

Part 2

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Why the Dream died, and will keep dying

This is from my homey Athanasios Jayne, as seen from the Early Christians Today group. (the place where both some followers and former followers of David Bercot's ministry hang out at)

In this response he talks about why the fellowship in Tyler Texas fell apart.

"Re: who are the others?
--- In, "Reed Merino"

You sound below a lot like Athanasios Jayne did, when
he was trying to convince people that their previous failed
experiences were inevitable...

Hi, Reed--glad to see that my remarks proved so memorable! :)

But I wouldn't go so far as to say that our failed experience
was "inevitable." My recollection of what happened to the
Dallas Early Christian group under David Bercot is rather
different from Dean Taylor's (a man whom I still count as
a friend).

The "movement" could have been much more than it was, but
it ultimately "died with a whimper," about a year after I
left--just as I had expected.

It was a combination of problems that led to its demise. One
major problem was that David kept changing his beliefs over
the years (and the changes in his Scroll Publishing materials
amply bear this out, to those who have watched the evolution,
or who still have his old tapes). He himself said that he was
on a "journey of discovery." But for me, and for most of us
I think, our "journey" as far as the fundamentals of the faith,
came to an end when we discovered the early Christian writings.
For us, things which had been settled and agreed-upon, in
accordance with the early Church witness, were no longer
"up for debate." Things like the Apostolic Succession of the
ministry, the Real Sacramental Presence of Christ in the
Eucharist, and infant Baptism--all of which were clearly
believed by the early (pre-Nicene) Church.

When Bishop Thomas Shank went back to his mission work in
Mexico, David was elected and Ordained a Bishop in Apostolic
Succession (by sympathetic Anglicans) as his replacement.
In David's very first sermon, he emphasized--in no uncertain
terms (I wish I had a tape of it!)--that he had "no intention
of changing anything." But about a year later, he announced
that he no longer wanted infant Baptism to be practiced in
our church. Shortly after this, he also began to teach in
direct opposition to the Apostolic Succession of the ministry
--despite both of these doctrines having been *unanimously*
agreed upon and affirmed in our written Statement of Faith
long before David became our Bishop.

I did what I could to oppose these changes, but as a laymen
without authority, and as a relative newcomer to the group,
it was a losing battle. David has a talent for teaching,
and he can be very convincing--even when he is teaching the
exact *opposite* of what he taught you a few years earlier.
Perhaps not surprisingly, the majority went along with these
changes, and decided to stay with David, a man who they
respected, a man who had been a close friend for year.
Rather than be an ongoing source of opposition in a losing
battle, I decided it was time to leave. At that point, it
was obvious to me that the "movement" was doomed, that it
was reverting back toward 16th century Anabaptism, and had
abandoned the pre-Nicene consensus as being authoritative.
Thus, we were "back to Square One," and were returning to
the very chaos of subjective Protestantism which we had
all struggled and sacrificed to leave in the first place.
Bishop Tom attempted to intervene (since, after all, he
was one of the men who had Ordained David, and since
Bp. Tom's congregation was *supposed* to be a "sister
church of like precious faith), but in vain. His efforts
were rejected as unwarranted "interference"). In the end,
I moved to Arizona to join Bp. Tom's congregation, because
I knew his beliefs hadn't changed, and so we were still
of one mind.

I knew (from years of prior experience among them) that the
Anabaptists were better at Anabaptism than our little group
in Dallas could hope to be, and that therefore, eventually,
it would become clear that there was no real reason for us
to exist and to struggle on alone. Our distinctive "reason
for being" (the early Church faith) had been fatally
compromised, and would ultimately be lost altogether--and
this is *exactly* what happened. In the end, the members in
Dallas were scattered to the four winds, some going this way,
others that way, and some returned to the very denominations
they had left to join us. Dean and David both ended-up
moving from Texas to PA (the "Anabaptist Mecca"), and joining
different Anabaptist churches (Dean is now a minister of the
Ephreta "Charity" church)--churches which deny undeniable
early Church teachings, even teaching that are "salvation
issues," things like Baptism for the remission of sins, and
that the Communion is the true and sacramental Body and
Blood of Christ (a belief which Dean once strongly insisted,
in my hearing, that he would rather die for than abandon).
These are beyond question essential and fundamental parts
of the faith of the early Church--the "faith which was once
delivered unto the saints." And yet now, I am sorry to say,
both David and Dean are members of churches that would not
hesitate to *excommunicate* them for daring to believe and
confess these same God-given truths.

No movement can survive weak leadership. No movement can
survive fundamental changes to its core beliefs. No movement
can survive without a clear vision and identity. And no
movement can survive without the deep conviction that it is
standing for something important--something worth living
and even dying for. Yet ALL of these problems existed in the
Good Shepherd Early Christian Church of Dallas. I tried,
I tried hard, but nothing I could do, alone, could keep the
dream from dying.


And this is what I had to say about the issue.

Re: Where are we? The answer

I stopped searching last year when I became Orthodox. I searched from 1997/1998 to 2006/2007. There comes a time in ones journey when the searching stops. What is the point in building an independent movement or community only to see it collapse? The gates of hell will not prevail against the Church. And the Faith was once handed to the Saints. When Bercot's movement fell apart in Tyler Texas I got upset because I really wanted to join that group back in 2001/2002 because I had no place to go! No where to fellowship......and there is something wrong with that. Why would God allow his Church to fall and leave people hanging? With no place to go?

When the I.C.C.E.C. (international Charismatic Episcopal Church) splintered in September of 2006 that was the last straw. At that time I was in the ECUSA(Episcopal Church usa). I joined that denom in 2003 because I needed a place to fellowship(in Pittsburgh) that actually believed in the doctrine of the real presence. So I joined an Anglo-Catholic Parish. But when the ICCEC splintered in September of 2006 that's when I knew that recreating the early church was hopeless.

Bercot's attempted didn't work. the ICCEC's effort didn't work, and your experiment in Nevada didn't work. So why are you trying again in Norristown? And if it works then how will you keep it from being just another denomination out of many?

Also how can you trust that your movement will not fall apart, die out, or become liberal after you die?

I hope I wasn't mean to you or rude. Please forgive me if I sounded that way.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

History of Christianity Part 2: Bishops and Apologists

David W did another excellent job! As seen from his youtube page.

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David's bout with Drake Shelton in the "Orthodoxy not Refuted series!"

I could be wrong, but I believe the going back and forth is now at an end.

You can see the latest installments at either his blog Pious Fabrications. Or at Orthodox Apologetics.

To watch everything, go to his Youtube page.

Some of the older videos in the series:

and from Drake Shelton:

To see the rest (from both sides) please visit the links at the very top of the post!

Christ is Risen! P.S. "I'm gonna keep saying this til Pentecost Sunday"
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