Mother Magdalena, PA, USA: In Search of Solid Ground – From New Age Hippie to Orthodox Nun

http://www.orthodoxmonasteryellwoodcity.org

ORTHODOX MONASTERY ELLWOOD CITY, PA, USA

Mother Magdalena, PA, USA:

In Search of Solid Ground – From New Age Hippie to Orthodox Nun

Mother Magdalena, from the Orthodox Monastery of the Transfiguration in Ellwood City, Pennsylvania, will share her faith journey and speak on the Theology of Joy.

Mother Magdalena was born the second child in a family of 10 children. She grew up in the Roman Catholic Church, which she loved. During her high school years, the effects of Vatican II on church liturgical life hit, catapulting her out of the church into a search for solid ground to stand on: through the hippie movement, feminism, the New Age, life in a yoga ashram, and humanistic and trans-personal psychologies. These experiences created a hunger for a life grounded in ancient truth rather than made-up ritual or emotional highs. Eventually she joined a group born out of the hippie movement in San Francisco, which, many years later, as a group joined the Orthodox Church, finding there the deepest, clearest path to Christ. These experiences were a perfect segue into monastic life, a life of women led by a woman, holding all in common, living lightly, serving all, filled with the joy of the presence of Christ, rich in the ancient, ever-renewing traditions of Orthodoxy.

Source:

https://events.cornell.edu/event/in_search_of_solid_ground_from_new_age_hippie_to_orthodox_nun

Fr. Simeon de la Jara, Peru: On a righteous path from Peru to Mount Athos, Greece

http://textsorthodoxy.wordpress.com

TEXTS – ORTHODOXY

symeon1

Fr. Simeon de la Jara, Peru:

On a righteous path from Peru to Mount Athos, Greece

When Miguel Angel de la Jara Higgingson was seven, his mother had a vision. She sensed that her son would some day leave her for a “far away place, like an island, there where people of solitude lived who pray all the time and rarely step out into the world”. Even she, however, could probably not have imagined just how far from his native Peru, both physically and spiritually, his life’s search would take him.

Now he is Father Simeon the hermit, an Orthodox Christian monk of Eastern Orthodox Church who lives on Mount Athos, a self-administrating, all-male monastic community on the Athos peninsula – the eastern most of three jutting peninsulas in the northern Greek prefecture of Halkidiki in Greece.

However, it’s not just his Peruvian origins that make Father Simeon such a well-known figure among visitors to Mount Athos; it’s also his radiant presence as an artist, poet and painter that makes him so sought after, especially by the young.

His journey began in 1968, when at the age of 18 he left Peru to discover the world. After travelling through Europe and Asia for over two years – during which time he was exposed to eastern philosophies and religions such as Buddhism, Hinduism and yoga – he finally settled in Paris, where he lived for the next three years.

It was in Paris that he first met a GreekOrthodox monk and learned about Orthodoxy, a meeting that was to have a profound effect on him. For the next Continue reading “Fr. Simeon de la Jara, Peru: On a righteous path from Peru to Mount Athos, Greece”

“They must learn, for they do not know” – The conversion of French George Lesier from Roman Catholicism to Orthodoxy

http://romancatholicsmetorthodoxy.wordpress.com

ROMAN CATHOLICS MET ORTHODOXY

“They must learn, for they do not know”

The conversion of French George Lesier from

Roman Catholicism to Orthodoxy

Source:

https://www.impantokratoros.gr/root.en.aspx

https://www.impantokratoros.gr/Conversion-Orthodoxy.en.aspx

With this title we publish the letter of Mrs. Catherine Lesier, by which she expresses her thanks for the contribution of our Holy Monastery for the conversion of her reposed husband to the One, Catholic and Apostolic Church, our Orthodox Church.

We used the above title, because it consists of the saying of George Lesier himself, while expressing his pain for his countrymen, himself being French, and because we believe this publication would also help those who have yet to know and taste the Grace of the Holy Spirit.

The conversion of George, of course is by nature the work of the Divine Grace. It is the response of God to his innocent intention, in his personal spiritual struggle which was but an expression of his anticipation for his union with the Holy Church. It is without doubt the fruit of love and of the hearty prayers of his pious wife and of the spiritual fathers and brothers, who anonymously or otherwise, they are referred to in the letter of Mrs. Lesier.

The contribution of our Holy Monastery lies in the divine functioning providence of its New Marmara Metohion at Halkidiki. of the last few years.
We believe that George, as he requested, kept clean the robe of holy baptism and now he reposes in the glory of the Lord. He intercedes for his family, his spiritual brothers but also for his, of the flesh countrymen. “They must learn, because they do not know” he would say when he referred to them. He wished that they all knew, if possible, the Grace of the Holy Spirit which he intensely lived with his holy baptism. Finally George was speaking from experience. For this he was very convincing and he became greatly accepted within his narrow family circle and by his countrymen that came to know him.

We pray that God rest his spirit with the Just and we ask him to pray to God for us who came to love him.

* * *

N. Marmaras 15-3-1993.

My honourable elder George, bless.

I know your time is precious, for this I beg you to forgive me that I make you spend a little time reading my letter.

Personally I thank you for the contribution of your spiritual work at the New Marmara Metohion. I especially thank you and all the fathers of the Monastery, for helping my husband George to come to Orthodoxy and be baptized at 65 years of age. I truly believe I have lived a miracle, because in my twenty years of married life, I had to deal with a very difficult man, especially in religious matters.

When after our wedding – fortunately we married in the Orthodox Church – I learned from someone spiritual that it is a heavy misdemeanour that I had married a heterodox and even as he called him a heretic. I was shaken and I started to feel the weight of my responsibility and guilt. That Spiritual one suggested to me that I should help him get to know Orthodoxy and perhaps if Continue reading ““They must learn, for they do not know” – The conversion of French George Lesier from Roman Catholicism to Orthodoxy”

The Impossibility of Aloneness: When Christ Found Me in the Himalayas – Joseph Magnus Frangipani, Alaska, USA

https://conversionstoorthodoxy.wordpress.com

CONVERSIONS TO ORTHODOXY

The Impossibility of Aloneness: When Christ Found Me in the Himalayas

By Joseph Magnus Frangipani, Alaska, USA

Printed in Issue 24 – Death to the World

Source:

http://deathtotheworld.com

http://deathtotheworld.comthe-impossibility-of-aloneness-when-christ-found-me-in-the-himalayas/

DEATH TO THE WORLD

I’m an Orthodox Christian living in Homer, Alaska and experienced Jesus Christ in the Himalayas, in India.

I listen to the heartbeat of rain outside…

Cold, Alaskan fog blowing in off the bay, emerald hills now that autumn is here and summer chased away into the mountains. But a milky white fog spreads over the bay like a silken ghost. I used to visit Trappist monasteries, back when I was Catholic, at the beginning of high school, and searching for a relationship of love. I read plenty of philosophy then to know that knowing isn’t enough, that having a realization in the mind is entirely different from experiencing a revelation of the heart.

I spent two birthdays in the Himalayas…

Traveling along gravel roads that drop deep into icy gulches where the Ganges river rages below not yet packed with the filth and mud and newspapers of villages, not yet carrying remainders of Indians in her current, I found Christ found me. It’s a difficult and strangely compelling atmosphere to confront oneself, – – India, – – sandwiched with black corpses, white snow, pagan fires and virulent animals.

I took a bus north from Delhi. It was crowded, tight and cramped, flies buzzed between my face and the windows smeared with brown slime. It’s so Continue reading “The Impossibility of Aloneness: When Christ Found Me in the Himalayas – Joseph Magnus Frangipani, Alaska, USA”

Native Americans and Orthodoxy – Frederica Mathewes-Green, USA

http://nativeamericansmet.wordpress.com

NATIVE AMERICANS MET ORTHODOXY

Native Americans and Orthodoxy

Frederica Mathewes-Green, USA

[Ancient Faith Radio; August 28, 2008]

Frederica Mathewes-Green: Here I am, I’m in Anchorage, Alaska. My first visit to Alaska, this completes my visiting fifty states. This is my fiftieth state, so it’s wonderful to be here at last. I am on the grounds of the Alaska Native Heritage Center, speaking to Steven Alvarez, who is- what is your role here at the center?

Steven Alvarez: I am Director of Strategic Initiatives and Media.

FMG: You were telling me you produce films sometimes for the center as well. And we were hearing the story of what brought you here, you said it was St. Herman that brought you. To begin with, your heritage goes back to New Mexico, your background is Apache. You were telling me that it’s connected with some of the peoples in Alaska, as well.

SA: Right. The Athabaskans up here share a common language (a common language base), and we’re pretty much the same people.

FMG: And, how in the world did you end up becoming Orthodox?

SA: I was part of San Jose Christian Fellowship that converted back in 1993. And I was the music director there at the church, and so that whole process brought us to Orthodoxy and…

FMG: You were swept up.

SA: Yeah, yeah.

FMG: Had you been a Christian all your life?

SA: I was raised Roman Catholic. So I had really no issues with the theology. I mean, I grew up with it. The only question that I kept asking was, once we become Orthodox, where does the band go? (laughs)

FMG: Because you were the percussionist in the worship band.

SA: I was the worship leader.

FMG: Oh, you were the worship leader.

SA: Yeah, and so we were chrismated and I was ordained a subdeacon that Continue reading “Native Americans and Orthodoxy – Frederica Mathewes-Green, USA”

Converting to Orthodoxy in Spain – Francisco José Pino Rodríguez

http://heavenonearthorthodoxy.wordpress.com

HEAVEN ON EARTH – ORTHODOXY

Converting to Orthodoxy in Spain

Francisco José Pino Rodríguez

Source:

http://journeytoorthodoxy.com

JOURNEY TO ORTHODOXY

I was born in 1976 and, even though practically all the members of my family were atheists (some of them Communist, others Anarchist), thanks to my grandmother I was baptised in the Latin (Catholic) Church as a baby and took my First Communion when I was 9 or 10. As you can imagine, I did not receive any kind of religious education at home. However, when I was 16 or 17, I started asking myself questions and began a journey through different Western Christian denominations that would finally lead me to receive the Sacrament of Confirmation in the Catholic Church in the year 2005.

Some years before that, however (in 2000 or 2001, I would say), I bought a small icon of Our Lord Jesus Christ in a Street market. When I looked at the image of our Saviour, it seemed as if He was looking at me, and this fascination for Byzantine art led me to start studying Orthodoxy. At first the interest was purely intellectual, but gradually I started wondering whether Orthodoxy would be a valid option for me. This question grew withing me little by little. At that time, however, I was not ready to say ‘yes’ to Orthodoxy, as it seemed something completely alien to my culture, language, etc. Please bear in mind that, as I told you, I was a committed Catholic since 2005. Nontheless, I continued reading extensively about the Orthodox Church and learning more each day.

In 2011 my interest in Orthodoxy had become so pressing that I thought I had to do something about it. Even though I perceived that there were some difficulties, I decided to spend some days at an Orthodox monastery in Cantauque (France) to know Orthodoxy in action and have some time to Continue reading “Converting to Orthodoxy in Spain – Francisco José Pino Rodríguez”

Spørsmål og Svar av Fader Serafim Rose, California, USA (+1982) ╰⊰¸¸.•¨* Norwegian

http://orthodoxyofmyheart.blogspot.com

ORTHODOXY OF MY HEART

Spørsmål og Svar 

av Fader Serafim Rose, California, USA (+1982)

Spørsmål: Kunne du ha sagt litt om Helligånden i den ortodokse lære og, i den sammenheng, synet på ikke-ortodokse sakramenter – om Helligånden er til stede i dem?

Svar: Vår Herre Jesus Kristus sendte ned Helligånden på pinsedagen, 50 dager etter Hans oppstandelse, 10 dager etter Han selv fór opp til himmelen, for å bli hos Kirken helt til tidens ende. Historisk sett, var det én Kirke Han grunnla.

Det har hendt i disse tider at folk har henvendt seg til historie for å finne denne Kirken. Ta, for eksempel, historien om Kirken i Uganda. På 1920 tallet, studerte to unge seminarister fra Uganda ved en anglikansk presteskole og begynte å se at den lære de ble gitt der ikke var den samme lære de fant i kirkefedrene. De begynte derfor å tenke at romersk-katolisismen måtte være svaret – at dette måtte være den oldtidlige Kirke. I ”jakten på den sanne, oldtidskirken” (som de kalte den), dro de for å studere ved en romersk-katolsk presteskole og igjen så at den lære de mottok der var noe annet en de gamle kirkefedrenes. De begynte å si, ”Hvis sannheten kan endres slik, hvor er da Kristi sannhet?” Og da hørte de om den ortodokse tro og gikk gjennom all slags strev for å finne ut hvor den var. Først fant de noen som kalte seg selv ortodoks men som var en sjarlatan, og delte ut det han kalte sakramenter. Når en gresk lekmann fortalte dem at det var noe ”rart” ved ham, så de dette, omvendte seg, og startet søket på nytt. Den første ortodokse biskopen de traff var ikke en spesielt god biskop, og sa, ”Å, det er ikke noe å bry seg om. Alle religioner er like, dra tilbake til anglikanerne.” Men de lot ikke dette fraråde dem. Til slutt fant de en ortodoks biskop som lærte det han skulle, og de ble ortodokse. I dag sprer Kirken seg gjennom Afrika: gjennom Uganda, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Tanzania, osv. Vi har til og med opptak av gudstjenestene deres, som er veldig imponerende. De har tatt bysantinsk, gresk, sang og, uten å prøve å endre den (de synger bare på deres egen måte, på deres eget språk), høres den veldig ærverdig ut, med en lokal afrikansk variant. De gjorde med bysantinsk sang det samme grekerne gjorde når de fikk den hebraiske.

Så disse afrikanerne søkte historien og fant ut at det er én Kirke som kommer ned til oss direkte fra Kristus og lærer det som ble holdt i oldtiden: den ortodokse Kirke. Fra et historisk perspektiv, kan du også se at de andre kirkene har gått bort fra dette: romersk-katolisismen først i det 11. århundre, når spørsmålet om pavens plass i Kirken endelig kom opp for alvor, og paven ikke godtok det ortodokse svaret, og tok hele vestkirken med seg.

Til denne dag, handler Helligånden i den ortodokse Kirke. I de fleste vestlige, protestantiske grupper, kalles det de har sjeldent for sakramenter, så du hadde kanskje ikke sett etter Helligåndens nåde i noe de heller ikke selv anser som sakramenter. Romersk-katolikker, så klart, og noen få andre grupper ser på seg selv som å ha sakramenter. Selv hadde jeg sagt at de sanne sakramenter, i den forstand at Kristus innstiftet dem, finnes kun i den ortodokse kirke: og de som bruker navnet på sakramenter, prøver å gjøre det beste de kan med dem – det er noe mellom sjelen og Gud, og det Gud ønsker å gjøre med den sjelen – det er Hans affære. Kanskje det er mer enn noe psykologisk; jeg vet ikke – det må Gud bestemme. Men hjelpemidlene Han innstiftet i Kirken har kommet ned til oss i dag i den ortodokse Kirke. Man kan faktisk se ved historisk undersøkelse at vi gjør det som ble gjort i oldtidskirken. Filip, for eksempel, tok den etiopiske hoffmannen ned til elven og døpte ham på akkurat samme måte som det vi gjør: tre neddykkelser i Treenighetens navn, Fader, Sønn og Hellig Ånd. Det er derfor ortodoksien er kjent for å være så ”gammeldags”: vi beholder de gammeldagse måtene som kom ned til oss fra Kristus, apostlene og Kirkens tidlige fedre.

Spørsmål: Kan du si noe om det ortodokse synet på ikke-kristne religioner?

Svar: Kristus kom for å opplyse menneskeligheten. Det er mange religioner utenfor Hans åpenbaring der tilhengerne er alvorlige – ikke bare djeveldyrkere – og der sjelen virkelig prøver å finne Gud. Jeg vil si at, før disse menneskene hører om Kristus, er disse religionene greie så langt de rekker, men de kan aldri føre deg til målet. Målet er det evige liv og himmelens rike, og Gud kom i kjødet for å åpne dette for oss. Derfor er kristendommen sann; du kan peke på de forskjellige sammenlignbare deler av sannheten i andre religioner, og de er ofte veldig dype, men de åpner ikke himmelen. Bare når Kristus kom til jorden og sa til røveren, ”Du vil være med Meg i Paradis,” ble himmelen åpnet for mennesker.

Spørsmål: Så har de som ikke har hørt om Kristus ingen tilgang til sannheten?

Svar: De som aldri har hørt om Kristus? – det må Gud bestemme. I det Gamle Testament hadde ingen hørt om Kristus heller, og så kom Kristus, og forkynte for dem i dødsriket. Også Hl. Johannes Døperen, som vi tror kom til dødsriket først, før Kristus, og forkynte at Kristus skulle komme dit for å frigjøre alle som ønsket å bli frigjort, som ønsket å tro på Ham. Så Gud kan åpne sannheten for dem som ikke hadde en sjanse til å høre: dvs. som ikke fornektet Evangeliet men ikke hørte det. Men så snart du mottar åpenbaringen, da har du mye større ansvar enn alle andre. Noen som mottar åpenbaringen om at Gud har kommet i kjød og deretter ikke lever i samsvar med den – det er mye verre for ham enn for noen hedensk prest eller slikt.

Oversatt fra Fr. Seraphim Rose, God’s Revelation to the Human Heart, Platina, CA: St. Herman of Alaska Brotherhood, 1997, s.39-42

Kilde:

http://www.norsk-ortodoks.com

http://www.norsk-ortodoks.com/2013/06/sprsmal-og-svar.html

DEN ORTODOKSE KATOLSKE KIRKE

Video – Nicaragua: An Orthodox Mission on the “Black River”

http://americaofmyheart.wordpress.com

AMERICA OF MY HEART

Nicaragua: An Orthodox Mission on the “Black River”

Schwester Matthaia Osswald, Deutschland: Das lange Abenteuer auf der Suche nach der Wahrheit ╰⊰¸¸.•¨* German

http://havefaithorthodoxy.wordpress.com

HAVE FAITH – ORTHODOXY

Schwester Matthaia Osswald, Deutschland:

Das lange Abenteuer auf der Suche nach der Wahrheit 

Quelle:

http://www.impantokratoros.gr/B6076E60.de.aspx

http://www.impantokratoros.gr/root.de.aspx

HEILIGES KLOSTER PANTOKRATOROS

Die Geschichte erzählt, wie eine röm.-kath. Schwester die Fülle der Wahrheit in der orthodoxen Kirche gefunden hat.

Kindheit und Jugend

Geboren wurde ich 1961 als Kind protestantischer Eltern in einer süddeutschen Kreisstadt. Wir lebten in einem Vorort, der früher ein eigenes Dorf gewesen war und erst später eingemeindet wurde. Dort gab es nur eine einzige röm.-katholische Familie, alle anderen Einwohner waren Protestanten. In der Grundschule war die Tochter dieser Familie eine Klassenkameradin von mir, die ich eigentlich ganz gerne mochte. Ich kann mich noch sehr gut daran erinnern, dass es mir strengstens verboten war, sie zu besuchen, denn mir wurde gesagt, dass es eine Schande für unsere Familie wäre, wenn jemand davon erfahren würde. In späteren Jahren wuchs die Toleranz in dieser Hinsicht. Wenn auch die Mehrzahl der Einwohner protestantisch ist, so gibt es doch mittlerweile auch viele Katholiken und mehrere röm.-kath. Kirchengemeinden in der Stadt.

Meine Eltern glaubten zwar an Gott, aber sie praktizierten ihren Glauben nicht, d.h. wir gingen sonntags nicht in die Kirche, beteten nicht, zumindest nicht gemeinsam oder vor den Mahlzeiten und Gott war kein Thema bei uns zu Hause.

Im Haus meiner Großeltern wohnte allerdings eine alte, evangelische Diakonissenschwester, die früher Kindergärtnerin gewesen war. Sie war wie ein Licht für mich. Immer wenn ich meine Großeltern besuchte, nutzte ich jede Gelegenheit um zu „entwischen” und diese Schwester zu besuchen. Sie erzählte mir immer von Jesus, von den Wundern, die er getan hatte, wie er ihr Continue reading “Schwester Matthaia Osswald, Deutschland: Das lange Abenteuer auf der Suche nach der Wahrheit ╰⊰¸¸.•¨* German”

東正教會: 瑞士阿爾卑斯山脈 Orthodoxy in Swiss Alps ╰⊰¸¸.•¨* 东正教在中国 – Chinese Video

http://edelweissofmyheart.wordpress.com

EDELWEISS OF MY HEART

東正教會: 瑞士阿爾卑斯山脈 Orthodoxy in Swiss Alps

Cerșetorul Japonez a devenit Călugăr ╰⊰¸¸.•¨* Romanian

http://textsorthodoxy.wordpress.com

TEXTS – ORTHODOXY

Cerșetorul Japonez a devenit Călugăr

As vrea sa va dau un mic exemplu de activi­tate misionara. Noi avem un mic metoc in New York. El este asezat intr-o parte foarte saraca a ora­sului, unde traiesc in general vorbitori de spaniola si afroamericani; de jur imprejur droguri, alcool, oameni fara adapost. Cred ca jumatate din popu­latia zonei traieste din alocatiile statului. Pentru adolescenti, in aceasta zona, sa nasti un copil la 14-15 ani este un motiv de deosebita mandrie. Nu, nu sa ai grija de acest copil, ci pur si simplu sa il nasti. De aceea, in cadrul acestei populatii, foarte putini vad pentru ei anumite perspective in viata. La fiecare al doilea colt de strada se afla o biserica romano-catolica sau protestanta, o sinagoga si asa mai departe, toate goale.

In fata casei noastre este o mica adancitura, pe care noi o numim fantana. Aceasta exista pentru a se putea ajunge prin ea la subsol. Odata, pe la mijlocul lui februarie, ningea cu ploaie si era frig. Deodata, printre tomberoanele de gunoi pe care, de asemenea, le tinem in acest put, am auzit un zgomot. Eu m-am gandit ca, asa cum se intampla deseori, vreun cersetor scormoneste in gunoiul nostru si cauta sticle goale. Eu nu sunt impotriva ca cersetorii sa stranga sticle goale, dar ei, de obicei, arunca peste tot gunoiul care le cade in mana, si aceasta nu am vrut s-o permit.

Asadar, deschid usa si vad in fata mea un om cu infatisare asiatica. Il intreb:

– Ce faci?

– Iertati-ma, va rog, raspunde el, caut si eu ceva de mancare.

– Pai, de ce scormonesti in gunoi? Haidem in casa!

– Nu-nu, nu pot, zice el, sunt murdar tot si mi­ros urat.

– Haide-haide, ii zic eu.

In timpul scurtei conversatii, i-am povestit ca noi avem o incapere in care poate face dus, isi poa­te schimba hainele si poate manca.

Omul s-a speriat:

– Ce vrei de la mine? Pentru ce faci toate astea?

Eu zic:

– Nu vreau sa imi arunci gunoiul in prag. Atat si nimic mai mult.

Dupa ce a mancat, m-am asezat langa el si a inceput discutia. Parea un om destul de destept. L-am intrebat:

– Unde locuiesti?

– Niciunde.

– Adica nu ai unde?

– Ei, zice el, in fiecare noapte faceam curat intr-un restaurant japonez, si ei imi dadeau voie sa locuiesc la ei la subsol.

– Dar cum ai ajuns fara adapost?

Si el mi-a povestit ca era inginer si ca a venit din Japonia. La inceput, lucrurile i-au mers foarte bine, dar apoi a inceput sa fie atras de droguri, co­caina, heroina, si in scurt timp a pierdut tot.

Eu i-am propus sa ramana la noi.

– O, nu, nu pot, a raspuns el.

– Dar de ce?

– Pentru ca eu caut adevarul! a spus omul.

Eu zic:

– Nu trebuie sa mergi nicaieri, adevarul este aici!

– Toti zic asa, a raspuns el. Am fost la catolici, la mormoni, la martorii lui Iehova, la iudei, la budisti. Toti promit unul si acelasi lucru, dar nu dau nimic.

– Bine, zic eu, totusi, mai ramai putin!…

Si a ramas sa stea la noi cateva zile. Am ince­put sa discutam. Apoi el s-a botezat si l-am numit in cinstea Sfantului Nicolae al Japoniei. Acum s-a intors deja in Japonia si a primit acolo calugaria intr-o manastire ortodoxa. Dar totul a inceput pen­tru el cu faptul ca noi i-am dat posibilitatea sa devina o parte din obste, ca i-am ingaduit sa vietuias­ca impreuna cu noi. El a vazut Evanghelia inainte de a o auzi sau de a o citi.

Sursa:

(Schiarhimandrit Ioachim Parr, Convorbiri pe pământ rusesc, Editura Egumenita, 2015)

ttps://marturieathonita.ro/cersetorul-japonez-devenit-calugar/

Fr. Pierre Haab, Switzerland: His long journey from Roman Catholicism, Buddhism and Hinduism to Orthodoxy

http://edelweissofmyheart.wordpress.com

EDELWEISS OF MY HEART

Fr. Pierre Haab, Switzerland: His long journey from Roman Catholicism, Buddhism and Hinduism to Orthodoxy

Aviv Saliu-Diallo, Pierre Haab

Fr. Pierre Haab, a Swiss former Roman Catholic who was disappointed with his religion and was carried away by Buddhism, Hinduism and other screamingly “fashionable” Eastern teachings and who is now a subdeacon of the Orthodox Cathedral of the Exaltation of the Cross in Geneva, speaks about his conversion to Orthodoxy.

* * *

—Can you tell us a few words about your family, education and the story of your conversion to the Orthodox faith?

I was born in an under-developed, impoverished, hungry country where the sky is permanently overcast with dark clouds—of course, in the spiritual sense. I am speaking of Switzerland, and especially of the city of Geneva—the center of world freemasonry and finances, the stronghold of obscurantist heresy, and a materialistic megalopolis that is enjoying the lulling, stable comfort that easily protects it from the numerous everyday tragedies of humanity.

My parents raised me in the Roman Catholic faith that they had inherited from their ancestors, for which I am extremely grateful to them; they implanted the fundamentals of Christian Revelation in me from childhood—namely faith in God, the doctrine and the necessity of prayer.

We were a practicing Catholic family. We attended Mass on Sundays and major Church feasts, and prayer was a part of our daily life (at least it was so for the first ten years of my childhood). My father, a journalist, devoted his professional life to the protection of the oppressed and justice. As far as my parents are concerned, they did their best to provide the continuity of religious education in our family.

As for the Church, though in my case the more precise name was “Papism”, the situation was different. As a child (in the 1950s) I felt comfortable in that religious environment; for example, I had no problem with prayers in Latin. Although for me faith was “the faith in obedience,” I used to ask many questions, and the adults—my parents and priests—were unable to answer them. And if they did answer me, they did it with a smile and condescendingly, thinking that I was trying to get to the core of the matter too seriously. They gave me to understand that performing the morally required duties was enough for me. And I decided that I would get the answers to my questions later through my independent, in-depth research and analysis of the primary sources, where the morals come from. Judging by my childhood memories, I always had a thirst for truth.

So I was waiting for some changes, when, at the very dawn of my youth, a crucial event happened in the West—a real revolution in Papism (which is still going on today). I mean the Second Vatican Council of 1962. Over a short span of several months (or, in some cases, two to three years) a whole set of rules which had been shaped in the living daily reality of Western Christianity for Continue reading “Fr. Pierre Haab, Switzerland: His long journey from Roman Catholicism, Buddhism and Hinduism to Orthodoxy”

Video – Riverside, California, USA: Fisher of men – Winning converts to the Orthodox Faith

http://heavenonearthorthodoxy.wordpress.com

HEAVEN ON EARTH – ORTHODOXY

Riverside, California, USA: Fisher of men

╰⊰¸¸.•¨*

Winning converts to the Orthodox Faith

Sister Matthaia Osswald, Germany: My great adventure in search of the Truth – A Roman Catholic nun discovered the fullness of the Truth in the Orthodox Church

http://edelweissofmyheart.wordpress.com

EDELWEISS OF MY HEART

My great adventure in search of the Truth

November 2008

Sister Matthaia Osswald , Germany 

A Roman Catholic nun discovered the fullness of the Truth in the Orthodox Church.

Childhood and adolescence.   

I was born in 1961 from Protestant parents, in a town in South Germany. We lived in a suburb which had earlier been a separate village and later was integrated into a municipality. There was only one Roman Catholic family, the rest of the inhabitants being Protestants. The daughter of this family, whom I used to like very much, was in my class at the elementary school. I still remember very well that I was strictly forbidden to visit her, because they told me that it would be embarrassing for our family if anybody learned about such a thing. During the following years there was a growing tolerance on this topic. Even though the majority of the inhabitants were Protestants, with the passage of time the “Catholic” population increased and more Roman Catholic communities were created in the town.

My parents did believe in God but they would not practice their faith, for example they would never go  to church on Sundays, we would not pray, at least not together or before the meals and the topic of “God” was not discussed in our home.
However, in my grand parents’ house lived an elderly Evangelical deaconess, who earlier had been a kindergarten teacher. She was like a light for me. Every time I would visit my grand parents I would use the occasion to “disappear” and visit this nun. She would always talk about Jesus; about His miracles; how repeatedly and in different ways He had helped her; about paradise, heaven and the angels. And she would pray with me. Time with her seemed to flow very fast! I was always sad, every time I would hear a voice telling me: “Where are you again? Come quick”! My grand parents did not take kindly to the fact that I would be so long with the “pious aunt”.

One evening when I was four or five years old, I was lying in my bed thinking how terribly tiring it must be for Father God that He cannot take time off to relax. He must always stay up worrying about the people and be careful that nothing bad happens to them. I made all kinds of suggestions to Him such as for example, if He could alternate with His Son, or with the angels. Finally, I told Him, that I wished so much to help Him and that it would not bother me at all, if every now and then I stayed up all night, but neither would this help the people. On one hand these were very childish, all these thoughts of mine, but on the other hand I meant them and me never forgot, even though in the following years they faded entirely into the background. Afterward my schooling started. I became busy with other things.

Of course I never doubted the existence of God, but His existence had no importance for me and my life. It was as if they were two separate things that had no relationship with each other. All my adolescence was influenced by the fact that I always wished to be like the others (Something that I never succeeded in as I was always marginalized, which possibly was due to my exterior unpleasant appearance.) I tried everything the others did, smoke, go in the evenings to the bars, smoke marijuana, listen to rock music etc. I was then Continue reading “Sister Matthaia Osswald, Germany: My great adventure in search of the Truth – A Roman Catholic nun discovered the fullness of the Truth in the Orthodox Church”

A very high-ranking European man about Protestantism, Roman-Catholicism & Orthodoxy

http://havefaithorthodoxy.wordpress.com

HAVE FAITH – ORTHODOXY

A very high-ranking European man

about Protestantism, Roman-Catholicism & Orthodoxy

Fr. Athanasios Simonopetritis (from the Monastery of Simonos Petra Monastery, Holy Mount Athos, Greece) says:

Last year came to our monastery a very high-ranking European man. We chatted with cordiality. Eventually, I asked him: “Welcome! Why did you come to us, ordinary monks, you, a famous man, at moment we are not anything great…”.

He replied disarmingly: “Father, you may not be something great, as you say. However, you live in a great space and you have a great treasure, Orthodoxy!”.

I deliberately insisted on the same pace, saying: “What can a so prominent man wait by Orthodoxy?”

In the debate were four or five fathers. He looked into our eyes one by one and said: “Listen Fathers, I will confess you something: Today both ways of expression of Christianity are in intractable, we have been tired with them. Both Roman-Catholicism with legalistic spirit and Protestantism with the hard logic crushed us. We want heart and freedom! These elements are in Orthodoxy. Perhaps you don’t understand. However, we understand very well”

Source:

http://ex2x2lettersfromgreece.wordpress.com

EX 2X2 LETTERS FROM GREECE

100+ Stories of Our Days – Coming to Orthodoxy

http://orthodox-heart-sites.blogspot.com

ORTHODOX HEART SITES

100+ Stories of Our Days – Coming to Orthodoxy

Continue reading “100+ Stories of Our Days – Coming to Orthodoxy”

Digital Natives Embrace Ancient Church – Twenty-somethings captivated by Orthodoxy

http://usaofmyheart.wordpress.com

USA OF MY HEART

Digital Natives Embrace Ancient Church

╰⊰¸¸.•¨*

Twenty-somethings captivated by Orthodoxy

By

Andrea Goodell

Source:

http://journeytoorthodoxy.com

JOURNEY TO ORTHODOXY

Tim Flinders will graduate from Grand Valley State University next month. Raised Lutheran, he also explored fundamentalist Baptism, Roman Catholicism and even Messianic Judaism before converting to Orthodox Christianity this year.

“Orthodoxy has completely transformed me already,” he said. “I feel like the first time in my life I’m growing spiritually.”

Flinders, 22, like many other young people converting to Eastern Orthodoxy, was looking for authenticity and historical accuracy in his Christian faith.

“I had so many different questions that needed to be answered,” said Flinders, who added he wrestled with the many divisions of the Christian church over the years.

He became Eastern Orthodox Christian at St. George Orthodox Church in Grand Rapids.

Recently he attended the second annual Encountering Orthodoxy Conference at Hope College.

The Rev. Deacon Nicholas Belcher, dean of students at Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology in Boston, gave the opening keynote address, using the themes of holy week to introduce Orthodoxy to the more than 50 who attended.

Eastern Orthodox Easter, Pascha in Greek — the language favored by Orthodox everywhere — fell on the same day as Western Easter this year.

Belcher described the nailing of Jesus to the cross as “one of the most cruel things human beings have ever thought of to do to other human beings.”

Eastern Orthodox Christians, he explained, experience the crucifixion and resurrection in the now during liturgy.

“There is no sense that we are just talking about something that happened a long time ago. It is today,” he said.

Dustin Miller, a Hope senior, attended the conference for extra credit in his history of Christianity class, but said,

“I’ve always been curious about Orthodoxy.”

He, too, said he was looking for the apostolic, historical roots of the Christian church. Miller considers himself non-denominational and said he didn’t know the Hope campus had Orthodox students.

“I’ve been trying to figure it out, trying to find what best fits me,” Miller said.

The Orthodox Christian Fellowship campus club, which sponsored this month’s conference, meets Thursday nights for Small Compline (a short Psalm and evening prayer service). Then the handful of Orthodox students, one seminary student and Fr. Steven VanBronkhorst discuss topics such as biblical foundations for Orthodox worship.

He would like to see more inquirers at the OCF meetings and more students at the second annual Encountering Orthodoxy Conference.

VanBronkhorst was a Reformed Church of America minister for almost two decades before coming to the Orthodox church 14 years ago. Still, VanBronkhorst said, he sees many more today looking for the historical church than when he was doing his own searching.

“I always felt that ideally there should be just one church,” he said. “The Orthodox church is by far the most historically faithful body. … Who is going to deny that the greater part of the evangelical world has the faith? They have faith. What they don’t have is the worship.”

Tyler Dykstra of Holland became Orthodox Christian this month.

He grew up Christian Reformed, but says he “wanted more.”

“Over time I started to realize there was so much history I had not known about even though I had gone to Christian schools all my life,” Dykstra, 24, said.

The Mane Man – An Interview with Troy Polamalu of Pittsburg Steelers Team, Samoa & USA – Journey to Orthodoxy

An Interview with Troy Polamalu

The Mane Man

By

Gina Mazza

Pittsburgh Magazine, August 2009

Source:

http://journeytoorthodoxy.com

http://journeytoorthodoxy.com/2010/08/24/wild-interview-with-troy-polamalu/

JOURNEY TO ORTHODOXY

Football is a given: How was this year’s Super Bowl experience versus XL? Tomlin versus Cowher? Goals for the coming season?

Fatherhood is new in Polamalu’s life since the birth of his son, Paisios, named after a beloved contemporary Greek Orthodox monastic, Elder Paisios, on Oct. 31, 2008. Has daddy-dom been life-changing? Will he encourage his son to play professional sports? How’s that beautiful new mom doing?

And last but not least: Faith. In order to properly meet Polamalu where he lives, this is the requisite, the grounding force that gives meaning to everything he does, every play he makes. Polamalu’s evident gratitude to the one who made him is marbled throughout our talk – from his training regime to his travels to Mount Athos, a monastic site in Greece, a place he calls “heaven on earth.”

While he has a reputation for being one of the NFL’s fiercest players, Polamalu would prefer “Tasmanian angel” over “Tasmanian devil” because his ball game is about glorifying God. “Football is part of my life but not life itself,” he says. “Football doesn’t define me. It’s what I do [and] how I carry out my faith.”

Whether shooting a Coke Zero commercial or running up the sand hills on Manhattan Beach to train – which he’s probably off to do after this interview – Polamalu, 27, is refreshingly modest and introspective, choosing his words as precisely as he picks his spots on the gridiron. He’s intense when the Continue reading “The Mane Man – An Interview with Troy Polamalu of Pittsburg Steelers Team, Samoa & USA – Journey to Orthodoxy”

France currently home to 500-700,000 Orthodox Christians and growing

http://franceofmyheart.wordpress.com

FRANCE OF MY HEART

France currently home

to 500-700,000 Orthodox Christians and growing

Source:

http://orthochristian.com

http://orthochristian.com/105307.html

ORTHODOX CHRISTIANITY

The Handbook of the Orthodox Church has been published in France, providing comprehensive information and practical information about Orthodox life in France. It presents a detailed map showing the location of all Orthodox parishes, monasteries, and dioceses in France by region, and provides information about Orthodox bishops (members of the Association of Orthodox Bishops), priests, and deacons, and also about clergy who have reposed in recent years. The new publication also contains information on icon workshops, Orthodox choirs, Orthodox periodicals, documentaries and art publications, candle and bookstores, and Orthodox movements in France, reports Sedmitza.

The number of Orthodox is growing steadily in France according to the Handbook, which places it at 500,000. The Catholic publication “La Croix” places the number at 700,000, with a preponderance of Russians and Romanians arriving over the past several years. This number includes the roughly 75,000 who regularly attend services, as well as those who come on major holidays, and all who are baptized into the Orthodox Church, considering themselves Orthodox.

In the late 19th century there were 20,000 Orthodox in France, and 200,000 in the late 20th. There are currently 278 parishes in France (160 in 2000; 238 in 2010), including 21 monasteries, the first of which was founded in 1934, and the majority of which have been founded since 1991.

The number of clergymen has also been steadily growing. According to 2017 information, there are 10 bishops, and 330 priests and deacons (300 in 2010), most of them married with secular professions. The largest number of parishes belongs to the Romanian Orthodox Church, with 91. There are currently three Orthodox schools of theology, including the St. Sergius Orthodox Theological Institute in Paris, founded in 1925, which was the first Orthodox institution in Western Europe.

Until the early 19th century, Orthodox services took place in France only on special occasions, such as the visit of Tsar Alexander I to Paris in 1814. Paris received its first Russian Orthodox chapel in 1816, and the first Greek Orthodox church opened in Marseilles in 1834.

The need for this publication arose from the constantly growing interest in Orthodoxy in France, which has gained more attention lately from the opening of the Russian Orthodox spiritual and cultural centers in Paris and Strasbourg, as well as other recent Orthodox events throughout the country. A considerable role has also been played by the iconography, sacred music, and the beauty of Orthodox rites.

Since 1963, the public information channel on French television has aired a monthly show called “Orthodoxy,” and the Catholic Channel WHO airs a monthly program called “Orthodoxy, Here and Now.” In 1964, a twice-monthly show called “Orthodoxy” appeared on the France-Culture radio station, and a show of the same name airs monthly on the Franco-Belgian Christian radio station RCF. Radio Notre-Dame has had a weekly broadcast “Light of Orthodoxy” since 2012, and the site orthodixie.com has been providing Orthodox news from France daily since 2005.

7/24/2017

Saint New Martyr Jose Munoz-Cortez from Chile & Canada who martyred in Athens, Greece (+1997) & the miracle Hawaii’s Icon of Holy Virgin Mary ╰⊰¸¸.•¨* From Roman Catholicism to Orthodoxy

http:/americaofmyheart.wordpress.com

AMERICA OF MY HEART

Saint New Martyr Jose Munoz-Cortez

from Chile & Canada who martyred in Athens, Greece (+1997)

& the miracle Hawaii’s Icon of Holy Virgin Mary

╰⊰¸¸.•¨*

From Roman Catholicism to Orthodoxy

Grave of St Martyr Jose (Joseph) Muñoz-Cortes 

in Holy Trinity cemetery, Jordanville, N. York, USA

http://saintsofmyheart.wordpress.com

SAINTS OF MY HEART

Saint Jose (Joseph) Muñoz-Cortes (13 May 1948, Santiago, Chile – 30/31 October 1997, Athens, Greece) was an Orthodox man, the keeper of the Iveron Icon of Montreal (Hawaii’s miracle Icon).

Jose was born in Chile into a pious Roman Catholic family of Spanish descent. He was a boy of twelve when he became acquainted with Archbishop Leontius (Filippovich) and under his influence José was baptized into the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia two years later, with his mother’s consent.

A talented artist, he secured a job teaching art at the University of Montreal, and began studying iconography. In the summer of 1982, Brother Joseph went Continue reading “Saint New Martyr Jose Munoz-Cortez from Chile & Canada who martyred in Athens, Greece (+1997) & the miracle Hawaii’s Icon of Holy Virgin Mary ╰⊰¸¸.•¨* From Roman Catholicism to Orthodoxy”