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Glory to God

Glory to God Thoughts and reflections on Orthodox theology and life

Start date: October 2007 182 episodes

Fr. Stephen Freeman is the priest at St. Anne Orthodox Church (OCA) in Oak Ridge, TN. 
His weblog “Glory to God for all Things,” has quickly become one of the most read Orthodox sites on the web, being translated frequently in Romanian, French, and Serbian, by enthusiastic readers. He is also author of the Conciliar Press book Everywhere Present.

Everywhere Present at Ancient Faith Publishing

Author Bio ↓

 

Episodes

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Date Title & Description Duration        
Jul 12, 2014

The Modern Vocation

The frightful pressure felt by the young as they struggle to find their vocation is deeply enmeshed in the Modern Project. Fr. Stephen looks at those expectations as well as the true vocation of Christians.

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9:47
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May 23, 2014

A Modern Conversion

Continuing his series on the "Modern Project," Fr. Stephen looks at the role "choice" plays in the modern world and contrasts that with older disciplines in the Christian life.

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13:34
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Mar 12, 2014

The Modern Project

With this podcast, Fr. Stephen begins a small series of reflections on the character of the modern world and the particular difficulties it presents to the Orthodox faith.

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Jan 07, 2014

The Final Destruction of Demons

Fr. Stephen uses the language of Baptism to describe the "mystical reality" of the Christian life.

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10:25
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Dec 23, 2013

The Fire of Christmas

Christ is the fire of God that comes among us. May He burn brightly in our hearts!

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4:53
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Nov 10, 2013

Beyond a Purpose-Driven Life

How do we lose God in the midst of our plans? How can we keep Him?

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5:30
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Nov 07, 2013

My Daddy’s Demons

Fr. Stephen looks at the connectedness of our lives - of our sin and of our salvation.

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7:46
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Oct 09, 2013

Get Out Of Your Mind

Are "mental" and "spiritual" the same thing? Fr. Stephen looks at how modern misunderstandings of the spiritual life can distort our Orthodox practices.

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10:00
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Oct 05, 2013

No Wedding Vows

Fr. Stephen notes that in an Orthodox wedding, there are no wedding vows. This stands in stark contrast to the central place vows hold in Western tradition. He suggests that the West has come to think of marriage as a "contract" between two people while the Orthodox Church thinks of it as a "union." The difference is important.

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11:39
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Jun 04, 2013

How the Church Reads the Church

People, regardless of their background, sometimes fall into arguments about the Scripture. Fr. Stephen looks at why the Orthodox need to avoid such arguments and explains how the Orthodox should rightly read the Word of God.

16:44
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Apr 25, 2013

History, Post-Modernism and Orthodoxy

Fr. Stephen speaks at length about the place of Orthodoxy within the modern world. Orthodox history is unknown to most Americans but has something to say to them and to help them in the healing of their own culture.

24:15
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Apr 09, 2013

Do You Hate Your Father?

Fr. Stephen looks at several of Christ's difficult sayings and what they mean. Why is it permissible to call a priest "Father"?

11:18
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Mar 08, 2013

Everything is in Motion

Fr. Stephen offers a meditation on the Father's understanding that everything is in motion. What does this mean for the direction of our lives?

7:40
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Mar 03, 2013

Justice Enough?

The desire for justice is infinite - because such a desire is one of the passions. Fr. Stephen looks at the problems created by wrong thinking on the topic of justice.

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Feb 25, 2013

Life in a Sacramental World

Fr. Stephen looks at our role as "priests of creation" in a world understood as sacrament.

12:23
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Jan 28, 2013

The Sacrament of the Heart

"The whole world is a sacrament," according to Patriarch Bartholomew. Fr. Stephen explores what this means as he examines the Eucharist in the Scriptures.

13:39
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Dec 13, 2012

Rational Sheep and the Word of God

When the Church's hymns describe us as "rational sheep," what does it mean? Fr. Stephen offers this meditation on language and humanity. Language is part of our deepest nature - and it is a reflection of God.

10:05
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Dec 10, 2012

Speaking to the Heart

Fr. Stephen completes his series on the true and false self, with thoughts on how we can go about "speaking to the heart."

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Dec 06, 2012

Evangelism and the Ego

In his recent series on the true and false self, Fr. Stephen looks at evangelism of the heart.

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Nov 20, 2012

Yet Not I

Fr. Stephen continues to look at issues between the false self and our true life in Christ.

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Oct 22, 2012

The Death of the Moral Man

Fr. Stephen continues with the topic of the battle between the true self and the false self, looking this week at what it means to be "moral."

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Oct 10, 2012

The True Self and the Story of Me

The true self is "hid with Christ in God," St. Paul tells us. What then is the "self" that we live with every day? Fr. Stephen looks at how we create our own identity and how we should seek our true self in Christ.

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Sep 26, 2012

A Secular Death

Our modern world is increasingly finding ways to avoid the uncomfortable reality of death. Orthodoxy faces death directly and sees within it the triumph of Christ and His affirmation of His good creation.

8:36
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Sep 01, 2012

The Invisible Christian

One of the temptations of our secular age is the public drive to make religious faith a "private" matter. Fr. Stephen looks at this tension within our culture and the importance of the Christian public response.

13:26
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Jul 01, 2012

The Disappointment of Religion

Our feelings and desires are trained by our culture to seek satisfaction. In our spiritual life, we often need to learn how to be disappointed. Fr. Stephen looks at the "disappointment of religion."

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May 31, 2012

To Know What You Cannot Know

The goal of the Christian life is true knowledge of God (Jn. 17:3). Fr. Stephen speaks about the mysterious character of this knowledge.

7:31 Transcript Available Direct link (play in browser) Play in Popup Download gtg_2012-05-31_pc.mp3
May 20, 2012

The Secret Life

What is the soul? Fr. Stephen speaks about the "secret life" and the mystery of our selves.

6:53
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Apr 25, 2012

The Christian Crisis

Fr. Stephen speaks about the crisis of a "Churchless" Christianity

8:42
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Mar 03, 2012

Smashing Icons

On the first Sunday of Great Lent, Orthodox Christians celebrate the return of icons to the Churches. Fr. Stephen looks at the spirit of icon smashing that occasionally infects Christians and various political movements and contrasts it with the spirit of authentic Christianity.

14:37
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Feb 23, 2012

The Sacrament of Mercy

God engages our world in concrete, practical ways. These "sacraments" are a means of sharing in the Divine Life. Fr. Stephen speaks about the "sacrament" of mercy.

7:20
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Jan 21, 2012

The Song of God

St. Gregory of Nyssa speaks of man both as singer and song. Fr. Stephen explores how we are the "song of God."

8:01
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Jan 14, 2012

Waking Up

Drawing on a passage from the writings of the Elder Sophrony, Fr. Stephen looks at the spiritual importance of "waking up." St. Paul reminds us, "Arise, O Sleeper, awake from the dead..."

6:07
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Nov 15, 2011

Forty Days Before Christmas - Why We Fast

Fr. Stephen looks at the very heart of fasting - not the foods - not the 'how to's' - but why we fast.

7:14
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Oct 29, 2011

“The Great Cloud of Witnesses”

Fr. Stephen looks at the meaning of the "Great Cloud of Witnesses" whom St. Paul describes as surrounding us as we go about the struggle of the Christian life.

7:41
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Oct 06, 2011

In the Shadow of Death

Fr. Stephen, having experienced a time of grief in the loss of his father, writes about the faith of Pascha and what it is to which we should look as we await our reunion with those we love.

12:57
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Aug 11, 2011

The Unnecessary God

Fr. Stephen looks at what it means to live in a relationship of love and freedom, and the problems it creates for our ideas of what is and is not necessary.

6:06
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Aug 05, 2011

The Unknown God

Fr. Stephen focuses on what we mean when we say, "I know God," and what we do not mean. We must know God - it is our salvation - but what does it mean?

9:37
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Jul 11, 2011

Choice, Existence and God

Fr. Stephen considers what it means to be a "convert" to the Orthodox faith within the context of modern American culture.

6:43
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Jun 17, 2011

Getting Past Religion

Fr. Stephen suggests that the heart of our faith and our relationship with God can be found more quickly in such things as music and beauty. We often seek to substitute language about religious doctrine in the place of these more primary expressions of our Christian life.

14:24
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May 17, 2011

The Things We All Share

Fr. Stephen speaks about the concept of anadoche - the spiritual communion and responsibility we have in one another's lives.

8:16
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May 15, 2011

The Hard Reality of the Kingdom of God

Fr. Stephen looks at the teaching of Christ on love for enemies and sets it in its proper spiritual context.

10:58
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May 01, 2011

The Exchange that Awaits Us

Fr. Stephen speaks about the difference between feast days as mere events of the calendar and the reality of the Kingdom of God that awaits us in the Feasts.

6:37
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Mar 26, 2011

The Temptations Of Church

Fr. Stephen examines what it means that the Church is the nexus of the crucified Christ's love.

11:49
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Feb 26, 2011

The Scandal Of Salvation

Fr. Stephen looks at particular points within the gospel teaching that are sometimes "scandalous," that is a "rock of stumbling" for believers. He examines how important these points are and how essential for our salvation.

8:00
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Jan 19, 2011

Living In-Between

Many efforts are made to convince modern Christians that they live "in between" Christ's first coming and His second - and that this "in between" period is somehow different and requires new understandings of the gospel. Fr. Stephen refutes this false understanding and describes where it is we now live.

12:42 Transcript Available Direct link (play in browser) Play in Popup Download gtg_2011-01-19_pc.mp3
Dec 18, 2010

You Never Pray Alone

Human beings have their true existence only in communion with God. Our prayer is also a communion - both with God and the whole Church.

13:25
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Dec 04, 2010

Why Would Anyone Want To Forgive An Enemy?

The forgiveness of enemies is a commandment of Christ and yet something we find almost impossible to do? Why has Christ asked such a thing of us?

7:52 Transcript Available Direct link (play in browser) Play in Popup Download gtg_2010-12-04_pc.mp3
Nov 29, 2010

Now That We Have Come To The End Of The World

Fr. Stephen looks at the implications for the "end of the world" found in Christ's preaching and incarnation - and what they mean for us.

10:39
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Nov 06, 2010

Mere Existence And The Age To Come

What is it that we hope for? Fr. Stephen suggests that there is a true life that can only be had in Christ - which is far more than mere existence.

8:53
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Nov 01, 2010

Existence And Truth

Fr. Stephen examines the association between existence and truth as set forth in the work of a number of modern Orthodox writers, as well as the Fathers.

8:50 Transcript Available Direct link (play in browser) Play in Popup Download gtg_2010-11-01_pc.mp3
Oct 09, 2010

Knowing What We Do Not Know

To know God is the essence of the Christian life according to Scripture - though how we know God is sometimes difficult to describe. Fr. Stephen looks at the moment of hesitation with the words "nevertheless" and "and yet" and the room they provide for such knowledge to be acquired.

6:30
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Oct 02, 2010

The Tree Heals The Tree

The use of allegory within the Scriptures and the hymns of the Church provides this meditation on how, in Christ, nothing is wasted.

5:00
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Sep 24, 2010

Treasure In A Box

Fr. Stephen uses the image of a treasure in a box to describe the problems of a purely "historical" approach to the Christian faith.

8:03
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Aug 28, 2010

Time And History

Returning to a topic that is often mentioned on Glory to God, Fr. Stephen suggests that Christianity is not just a "historical" religion, but something far more.

9:00
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Aug 21, 2010

Giving And Receiving

Human beings were created to offer all of creation up to God in an act of thanksgiving. Fr. Stephen explores this life of praise.

5:28
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Aug 13, 2010

The Double Mystery Of The Cross

Reflecting on a sermon of St. Gregory Palamas, Fr. Stephen looks at the significance of the Cross as reflected in the writings of the fathers.

8:05
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Jul 24, 2010

You Are Not A TV Show

Our digitalized world has created what we now call "virtual reality." The reality that we are called to know is not a construct of our own imagination, but the truth of ourselves as found in Christ.

8:43
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Jul 19, 2010

The Mystery Of Goodness

What does it mean to be good? Fr. Stephen speaks about the mystery of goodness and how it is only known in Christ.

10:06
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Jul 03, 2010

To Tell The Truth

Fr. Stephen looks at telling the truth as a matter that goes to the heart of our true existence.

8:45
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Jun 26, 2010

The Crisis Of Religion

Fr. Stephen reflects on a few quotes from Fr. Alexander Schmemann's For the Life of the World - and the crisis of secularism in which we live.

8:10
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Jun 19, 2010

The Price Of The Liturgy

A meditation on the words of Elder Sophrony, "Our lives are an endless martyrdom," gives rise to thoughts on the true character of the liturgy.

4:33
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Jun 14, 2010

A Secular Communion

Fr. Stephen looks at the pressures created by our secular culture - particularly how they affect our communion with God.

6:19 Transcript Available Direct link (play in browser) Play in Popup Download gtg_2010-06-14_pc.mp3
May 29, 2010

Hidden Saints

Fr. Stephen looks at the "hidden saints" and the hiddenness of our life with God.

6:58
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May 22, 2010

Within A Mandorla

Fr. Stephen looks at one of the unique features found in several icons to explore how the Scripture treats these same events. Icons and Scripture carry us much deeper than mere literalism.

11:28
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May 15, 2010

Our Selves, Our Souls And Bodies

Fr. Stephen looks at the importance of understanding our relationship with God as involving all of who and what we are and not reducing our relationship to a set of ideas.

8:02
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May 11, 2010

Praying For The World

Numerous elders of the Orthodox Church speak about the common responsibility for sin that we share through our humility and love for one another. Fr. Stephen examines how this can be so.

6:05
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Apr 29, 2010

Making Choices

Our culture champions our ability to choose. Fr. Stephen suggests that choices are not quite as central in our lives as we imagine.

5:22
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Apr 09, 2010

The Mystery Of Pascha

Fr. Stephen looks at the timeless and eternal aspects of the feast of Pascha and how it effects our daily lives.

6:00
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Mar 27, 2010

The Weakness Of Man

Fr. Stephen offers thoughts on how it is we are saved in our weakness rather than our strength.

5:10
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Mar 13, 2010

Publicans And Harlots And The Last Banquet

Fr. Stephen looks at the image of Christ with the unrighteous gathered around Him and recalls a famous passage in Dostoevsky.

5:59
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Mar 06, 2010

Redeeming The Time

Fr. Stephen speaks about "redeeming the time" through the constant remembrance of the name of God.

4:06
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Feb 27, 2010

Just A Shell

Fr. Stephen looks at the proper Othodox understanding of the relation between soul and body and some of the distortions of our modern culture.

5:57
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Feb 20, 2010

The Instinct Of Repentance

Fr. Stephen contrasts the Scriptural understanding of repentance with many of the modern misunderstandings that crowd our world and suggests ways that our hearts may learn the "instinct" of repentance.

12:00
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Feb 12, 2010

Looking For Self In All The Wrong Places

There is a modern construct of the self that is something of a delusion. Fr. Stephen speaks about our true life "that is hidden with Christ in God" as taught by St. Paul.

9:07
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Jan 30, 2010

The Existence Of God

Fr. Stephen offers a reflection on what it means to say that "God exists."

7:07 Transcript Available Direct link (play in browser) Play in Popup Download gtg_2010-01-30_pc.mp3
Jan 16, 2010

The Opacity Of Sin

Sin is opaque - it does not allow the light of God to enter and be reflected from our lives. Fr. Stephen looks at the work of God's light within our lives and suggests ways in which we may understand our relationship with God through what the Scripture says about light and darkness.

9:33
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Jan 09, 2010

To Remember God

The simplest and sometimes most difficult task of the Christian life is to remember God: always, everywhere and at all times. Fr. Stephen looks at this simple practice that lies at the heart of the Orthodox faith.

7:23
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Jan 02, 2010

Having Then Gifts Differing

It is something of a commonplace for modern Christians to think about their "ministry" and place within the Church. Fr. Stephen looks at this idea in the light of Tradition and offers a different approach.

10:14
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Dec 19, 2009

Christmas Throughout The Ages

Fr. Stephen offers thoughts on the daily consequences of the "Word made flesh," and suggest ways that we might live Christmas every day of our lives.

7:16
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Dec 14, 2009

What The Heart Reveals

The heart can see what the eye cannot and can take this unseen things into itself. Fr. Stephen looks at the possibility of joy even when the eye sees nothing joyful.

6:02
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Dec 05, 2009

The Treasures Of The Heart

Every day we contribute to the "treasure of our heart," for good or evil. Fr. Stephen looks at this and suggests how to nurture the good within our heart.

6:28 Transcript Available Direct link (play in browser) Play in Popup Download gtg_2009-12-05_pc.mp3
Nov 28, 2009

The Good Confession

In these brief remarks on this Thanksgiving weekend, Fr. Stephen looks at the essential Christian confession of thanks, "God is good."

3:14
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Nov 21, 2009

To Believe The Truth

What do the Scriptures ask of us when they speak of "believing?" Fr. Stephen looks at the nature of true believing and its importance for our lives.

5:58
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Nov 07, 2009

I Don’t Know About That

If you have ever felt like the right words in an argument simply won't come - perhaps you should read these thoughts.

7:10
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Oct 31, 2009

The Argument

Fr. Stephen shares two stories from the lives of the desert fathers and offers reflections. The grace of God given to us in forgiveness and the Spirit of peace involve the healing of the soul.

7:53
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Oct 24, 2009

Poor In Spirit

What does Christ mean when He says, "Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven?" Fr. Stephen looks at this familiar verse in the context of St. Paul's teaching on weakness and necessity.

9:38
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Oct 17, 2009

Knowledge Of God

The Orthodox faith is grounded in the experience of knowing God. Fr. Stephen looks at the boundaries of such knowledge and simple path to such knowledge given to us in the Tradition of the Church.

11:20
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Oct 10, 2009

The Theology Of The Image

Fr. Stephen reflects on the "theology of the image," particularly its importance in St. Paul.

11:09 Transcript Available Direct link (play in browser) Play in Popup Download gtg_2009-10-10_pc.mp3
Oct 05, 2009

The Icon As Truth

Fr. Stephen looks at how it is possible to distort an icon and how the distortions within our own hearts effect what we see.

6:34
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Sep 26, 2009

Icons And Words

Fr. Stephen looks at language and how it can be seen as an icon - serving as a "Window to Heaven."

11:57
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Sep 19, 2009

Is The World Literal Or Iconic?

How we see the world has much to do with our capacity for wonder. Is what we see all there is - or does it point to something beyond itself?

6:28
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Sep 12, 2009

Doctrine And Opinion

Fr. Stephen looks at how the teaching of the Church differs from opinion and the process of argument. Doctrine is a "verbal icon of Christ."

6:21
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Sep 07, 2009

Prayer - A Personal Thing

Fr. Stephen reflects on the meaning of Dostoevsky's statement, "Each man is responsible for the sins of everyone," and its meaning for prayer.

6:49
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Aug 22, 2009

The Face Of God

Fr. Stephen looks at the deep importance that Christ as the "image of God" carries for our faith and how that image teaches us about the nature of all images.

6:33
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Aug 15, 2009

The Last Battle

Fr. Stephen suggests that the truly great things are those that are most hidden from our sight - and that the last battle may be fought in the silence of a human heart.

6:06
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Aug 08, 2009

Speaking With Authority

Fr. Stephen looks at the nature of authority and its root in the reality of the Cross.

8:30
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Jul 31, 2009

In The Grasp Of Wonder

Fr. Stephen looks at the role wonder should play in the Christian life.

6:04
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Jul 18, 2009

The Chief Of Sinners

Fr. Stephen looks at what it means to be the "chief of sinners" and the solidarity Christ has with us - even in our sin.

6:24
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Jul 11, 2009

Prayer As Communion

Fr. Stephen speaks on prayer as an aspect of our participation in the life of God - taking it from words spoken to a presence shared.

9:14
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Jul 04, 2009

You Are Not A Bible Character

Fr. Stephen looks at a common abuse of the Scriptures - as individuals imagine themselves to be characters in the Bible.

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Jun 27, 2009

The Sacrifice Of Emptiness

Fr. Stephen looks at Christ's act of "self-emptying" as described by St. Paul in his letter to the Philippians as a way of understanding of how His death frees us from our bondage to sin.

10:25
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Jun 20, 2009

The Desire For Justice And The Mercy Of God

Fr. Stephen, drawing from St. Isaac and other sources, looks at the Orthodox understanding of the mercy of God and how certain modern ideas of God's "justice" have sought to undermine this Orthodox teaching.

12:29
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Jun 13, 2009

Liturgical Knowing

Fr. Stephen looks at worship as a means by which God makes Himself known to us.

8:59
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Jun 06, 2009

Heaven On Their Minds

Fr. Stephen looks at how we should see heaven breaking in on the world in which we live and how the "dim vision" of the face of Christ informs our daily lives.

8:30
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May 30, 2009

Engaging Creation

Fr. Stephen offers a suggestion for how we should engage the world around us. Rather than living as thinking beings surrounded by inanimate objects - we live as eucharistic people, leading creation in its eternal song of praise to the Creator.

10:08
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May 23, 2009

Beauty And The Salvation Of The World

Fr. Stephen looks at Icons and Scripture and what they hold in common - in particular their use of beauty to teach us the reality of God.

9:51
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May 16, 2009

Personal Issues

Fr. Stephen takes a look at how concern for various "issues" often distracts us from the true task of tending to the health of our soul.

10:30
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May 09, 2009

The Bells

Fr. Stephen looks at the rich texture of Orthodox life and tradition and the peculiar, sacramental place that bells hold within it.

9:06
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May 02, 2009

Unbelief And The Two-Story Universe

Fr. Stephen offers his observations on the split in our world between sacred and secular (the "two-story universe) and the role it plays in causing unbelief and the role unbelief may play in allowing us to be healed.

7:25
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Apr 25, 2009

Singleness Of Heart

Fr. Stephen looks at singleness of heart—simply learning to say what is in our heart, practicing integrity within ourselves. Its importance to one's spiritual life cannot be overstated.

8:02
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Apr 18, 2009

Take, Eat

Fr. Stephen looks at Holy Thursday and the sacrament of the Eucharist and the meaning of Christ's words, "Take, eat."

13:59
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Apr 13, 2009

For The Sake Of Envy

Fr. Stephen speaks about the role played by envy in the events of Holy Week. Seeing envy as a primary sin in our world, he looks at how the Gospel confronts this error in human thought.

14:37
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Apr 04, 2009

Careful Devotion To Christ

Fr. Stephen returns to some of his thoughts on life in a world divided into sacred and secular - a world he describes as the "two-storey universe." He offers practical steps on how to practice the presence of Christ at all times and places in a careful devotion to Christ.

9:13
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Mar 28, 2009

Personhood And Love

Fr. Stephen looks at the teaching of the Elder Sophrony and St. Silouan and what it is they mean by "person." Our existence is rooted in love.

5:16
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Mar 21, 2009

Why Does God Sing?

Fr. Stephen makes the observation that the Scriptures say that God sings. He then goes on to ask about the place of music in worship and why it is that some modern Christians do not sing.

14:26
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Mar 14, 2009

Forgiveness - The Hardest Love of All

Fr. Stephen looks at the forgiveness of our enemies and suggests some small steps we can take to cultivate a heart of mercy and extend it towards others.

9:25
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Mar 07, 2009

Know God Or No God

Fr. Stephen speaks on the utterly essential relationship with God. We must truly know Him.

9:04
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Mar 01, 2009

Why We Fast

Fr. Stephen looks at the deeper meaning of fasting and its true place in our Christian life.

10:37 Transcript Available Direct link (play in browser) Play in Popup Download gtg_2009-02-28_pc.mp3
Feb 23, 2009

Scripture And The Church

Fr. Stephen speaks about the unique relationship between the Church and Holy Scripture. They are integral to one another. We do not remove the Church from Scripture, but neither do we remove Scripture from the Church.

10:43
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Feb 14, 2009

The Unholy Land

Fr. Stephen looks at the temptations of our secular culture and its invitation to live in an "unholy land."

7:52
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Feb 07, 2009

Orthodoxy And Science Fiction

Fr. Stephen explains why he considers science fiction as a form of modern theological thought.

12:03 Transcript Available Direct link (play in browser) Play in Popup Download gtg_2009-02-07_pc.mp3
Jan 31, 2009

The Wrath Of God

Fr. Stephen looks at the Orthodox understanding of the wrath of God and the patristic teaching that His wrath is nothing other than His love given to us. The wrath is our own hatred for His love. It is an understanding of the good God who loves mankind.

10:10
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Jan 17, 2009

Salvation In A Cloud Of Witnesses

Fr. Stephen looks at the difference between individual salvation and personal salvation and the deep importance found in the distinction.

15:19
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Jan 10, 2009

The Longest Liturgy

Fr. Stephen speaks about the "liturgy of the heart" as the longest liturgy of all and the true nature of worship.

13:48
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Jan 04, 2009

Bowing In Bethlehem

Father Stephen looks at the history and architecture of the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem and draws lessons for our own humility.

9:01
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Dec 20, 2008

The Smallness Of God

Fr. Stephen turns our thoughts during this week of the Nativity to the "smallness" of God. God has come to save us through His "weakness" as St. Paul says and invites us to share in that humility.

4:42
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Dec 13, 2008

The Soul As Mystery

Fr. Stephen looks at the human soul and what it means that it is a mystery - known to God - but not fully known to us.

7:45
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Dec 06, 2008

Sitting In A Cave

Fr. Stephen reflects on the monastic cave in which St. John of Damascus dwelt and compares it to the "cave" of our heart.

9:18
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Nov 29, 2008

The Role Of Icons

Fr. Stephen talks about the importance of icons in our modern world - helping us to see and understand clearly the truth of creation and God.

9:32
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Nov 22, 2008

The Agent Of Change

Fr. Stephen looks at the Christian understanding of power and the marvelous works of God. God's power is utterly unlike that of the world.

19:28
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Nov 15, 2008

Cynicism And The Goodness Of God

Fr. Stephen looks at the problems presented by cynicism for belief in God. Worldly wisdom and the wisdom of God are very different things.

7:34
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Nov 10, 2008

The Normal Course Of Things

Fr. Stephen contrasts what we think of as "normal" with the vision of the Christian life described in Scripture and the Orthodox faith.

7:09
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Nov 01, 2008

The Voice Of Creation

Fr. Stephen looks at creation and its "voice" as described in Old and New Testament and sees what it means for our realtionship with the world around us.

8:29
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Oct 25, 2008

Cultures Of Remembrance

Fr. Stephen speaks of the Church as a culture of remembrance - not of a dead past - but of death trampling down death.

8:17
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Oct 18, 2008

Remembrance

Fr. Stephen speaks of the power of remembrance - both the remembrance of wrongs done to us and the remembrance of God. He speaks of how it is that the remembance of God alone establishes us in the Truth.

5:31
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Oct 11, 2008

Me, You And The Other Guy

The strange relationship of prosperity and piety.

6:55
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Sep 20, 2008

How Simple Should Christianity Be?

Despite a drive to simplify everything - Fr. Stephen contends that Orthodoxy describes not a simplicity but a fullness of life and invites into that fullness and not just a small religious corner.

8:55
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Sep 13, 2008

Truth and Existence: the Consequences

Fr. Stephen looks at last week's podcast on truth and existence and the impact it should have on how we live.

5:56
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Sep 06, 2008

Truth And Existence

Fr. Stephen looks at the Orthodox connection made between truth and our existence and what it means for our life.

7:19
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Aug 23, 2008

Humility - The Only Path Forward for Orthodoxy

Fr. Stephen looks at the virtue of humility and its place in the life of Orthodox Christianity, suggesting that it is our only path towards union with God.

8:22
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Aug 16, 2008

Healing The Heart

This week, Fr. Stephen focuses on the healing of the heart as the most essential work in our spiritual lives.

10:15
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Aug 09, 2008

The Paradox Of Prayer And The Revelation Of Beauty

Fr. Stephen speaks about the paradox of prayer and the personal character it has in our life as well as the personal character of beauty and the resolution of all paradox.

10:58
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Aug 02, 2008

In The Last Days

Fr. Stephen reflects both on his own generation's fascination with the "last days" and with much of modern Christianity's fascination with the same. He argues that Orthodox Christians should focus on Christ in the Eucharist who is the "One Who Is To Come."

13:17
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Jul 26, 2008

The Passion To Consume

Fr. Stephen looks at the role the classical Christian passions play in our modern culture - how they shape what we think, how we feel, and many of the decisions we make - even on the unconcious level.

10:26
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Jul 19, 2008

The Habit of Prayer

Fr. Stephen speaks this week about the "habit of prayer" and the understanding of prayer as communion with God.

6:22
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Jul 12, 2008

The Consequences of a Full Faith

In this podcast Fr. Stephen looks at the implications involved in living the "Fullness" of the Faith, as taught by the Orthodox Church.

14:01
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Jul 04, 2008

The Secret Place Of The Most High God

Fr. Stephen explores the importance of holy places both in the temple and in the heart.

10:25
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Jun 21, 2008

The Truth of Ourselves

Fr. Stephen observes that the real truth of our lives before God is best found in our weaknesses rather than in our strengths.

5:44
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Jun 11, 2008

Nothing But The Whole Truth

Fr. Stephen looks at Orthodoxy and our lives as a matter of the "Whole" truth, rather than a "one-sidedness." He urges us to press forward into the whole truth of Christ.

9:33
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May 31, 2008

Is Relationship with God What We Want?

Fr. Stephen looks at the words "relationship" and "fellowship" and notes that they are very "weak" translations of the Greek word koinonia in Scripture. He suggests how we should understand this word in its true, Orthodox sense.

15:21
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May 24, 2008

Grace and the Inverted Pyramid

Father Stephen comments on some of the thoughts found in a recent work by Archimandrite Zacharias of England. He looks at the "inverted pyramid," the humility of Christ in which authority is to be found not at the top but at the bottom of things, in Christ's bearing the sins of the whole of humanity.

12:30
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May 17, 2008

The Silent Sentinels Among Us

Fr. Stephen looks at the quiet role played by grace-filled persons in our world. In many ways, God preserves us through the presence of such saints.

11:53
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May 10, 2008

How To Read The Church

Fr. Stephen continues his thoughts on the Church as the proper interpretation of Scripture. In this talk he looks at how we "read" the Church.

8:57
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May 03, 2008

The Orthodox Interpretation of Scripture

Fr. Stephen sets for a case for an "Orthodox Interpretation of Scripture" in which the Church itself is seen as the proper way to interpret the Sacred Writings.

9:44
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Apr 26, 2008

The Ecclesiology of the Cross

Fr. Stephen speaks about the doctrine of the Church (ecclesiology) and how it is best understood by looking at the cross of Christ.

9:48
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Apr 19, 2008

Is Hell Real?

Fr. Stephen discusses the Orthodox understanding of the difference of heaven and hell and some of its implications for how we speak about them.

12:08 Transcript Available Direct link (play in browser) Play in Popup Download gtg027_pc.mp3
Apr 12, 2008

Will There Be Faith On The Earth?

Fr. Stephen speaks of the difficulties and trials of those coming to faith in God and the challenges facing our children.

8:33
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Apr 07, 2008

Learning To Sin

In this podcast Fr. Stephen looks at the importance of "learning to sin", meaning the importance of learning what it is as a Christian that keeps us from the Kingdom of God.

10:39
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Mar 29, 2008

The Sacrament of the Present Moment

In this podcast Fr. Stephen speaks of the God who is "everywhere present and fills all things," and the importance of our being open to Him everywhere, always, in all things.

(11:52)

11:52
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Mar 22, 2008

My Right Brain

The Triumph of Orthodoxy is also a triumph of the wholeness of God.

(7:40)

7:40
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Mar 15, 2008

Salvation By Grace and Just Showing Up

Fr. Stephen talks about one aspect of the Orthodox understanding of salvation by grace, and notes that a very large part of it consists in "just showing up," learning to be present to God and to accept faithfully the means of grace given to us.

9:38

9:38
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Mar 08, 2008

Giving Thanks In All Things

In this podcast, Fr. Stephen speaks about giving thanks to God and its foundation in the belief that God is good. He focuses on four aspects of that goodness.

17:56
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Mar 01, 2008

At the Edge of Tradition

In this podcast Fr. Stephen speaks about the experience of standing at the "edge" of Tradition as people look at the Tradition of the Church and discuss it, seek to appropriate parts of it, but remain outside of that Tradition. He emphasizes that the Tradition of the faith is nothing other than our union with the True and Living God and His union with us.

7:44
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Feb 23, 2008

Eight Things I Should Know

Fr. Stephen talks about eight different ways that the divided, "two-storey" universe, a world divided between sacred and secular, effect us as Christians and offers reflections on how we should see and cope with each of them. This is the largest summary of his work to date.

23:46
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Feb 16, 2008

All The Fullness of God

In this podcast, Fr. Stephen speaks about the Orthodox use of the word "fullness," both as a description of the Church but also, and especially, as a description of what we long for in the Christian life.

9:21
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Feb 09, 2008

Christianity In A One-Story Universe - Part 6; Where Do We Begin?

Fr. Stephen looks at the aspect of seeing the world in wonder - an experience shared by both Christian and non-Christian and suggests, following St. Gregory of Nyssa, that it is the place where our faith should begin.

9:24
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Feb 02, 2008

Orthodoxy and Culture

Fr. Stephen looks at the relationship between Orthodox Christianity and Culture and argues that since Orthodoxy is the fullness of the faith, it should also be productive of the fullness of what it is to be human. Healthy Orthodox nations have always had a healthy Orthodox culture.

11:05
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Jan 26, 2008

Right and Wrong in the One-Story Universe

Fr. Stephen looks at morality and virtue, particularly as understood during the so-called "Age of Enlightenment," and compares it with an Orthodox understanding of right actions in the life of a Christian.

15:04
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Jan 19, 2008

What Faith Shall I Defend?

Fr. Stephen makes a distinction between the truth of the Christian faith and the many distortions and misperceptions of the Christian faith that surround us. He makes the case that we need only defend the search for the true and living God.

8:01
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Jan 12, 2008

A Faith Worth Believing

Fr. Stephen describes the one-storey universe as a faith worth believing and addresses the difficulty that people in the modern world have in transitioning from the secularized religions that dot our landscape to a truly integrated religion such as the Orthodox faith.

9:46
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Jan 05, 2008

Things Are Not Always As They Seem

In this week's podcast Fr. Stephen notes that things are not always as they seem. In our busy world we often only see things in a blur. We want things quickly. He notes that grace has a slowness about it and urges us to "be still" and "know" God.

8:45
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Dec 29, 2007

Getting Saved in the Church

In this podcast, Fr. Stephen speaks about salvation and the Church in the Orthodox understanding. He states that: "the Church is what salvation looks like," and explains how the Tradition of the Church sees our salvation in Christ as something we work out in the context of the believing community rather than as mere individuals.

17:57 Transcript Available Direct link (play in browser) Play in Popup Download gtg011gettingsaved_pc.mp3
Dec 22, 2007

The Church in the One-Story Universe

Fr. Stephen continues his series on the One-Story Universe and looks at what it means for the Church. The Church is concrete and real. The "Fullness of Him that Filleth All in All," is not an abstraction or an "invisible" Church, but rather the very real Church established by Christ.

8:32
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Dec 15, 2007

Scarcity and Abundance in a One-Story Universe

In this talk Fr. Stephen continues with the imagery of the One-Story Universe, but uses it to challenge our sense of finitude and scarcity and instead boldly proclaims that the risen Christ has raised us to a Kingdom where we are not bound by limits, but by the endless abundance of His love.

9:12
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Dec 08, 2007

Time in a One-Story Universe

Fr. Stephen continues his series on the modern world's division between things secular and things spiritual, showing that the Orthodox life should be lived not in a "two-story" universe but in a "one-story" universe. This talk looks at our modern understanding of time and how it runs counter to the Church's traditional understanding.

15:38
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Dec 01, 2007

The One-Story Universe and Icons: Music from Another Room

Fr. Stephen Freeman speaks on icons as doors that open onto other rooms. He also speaks about how we view evil in this understanding of God's world.

13:01
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Nov 24, 2007

Struggling in a One-Story Universe

Fr. Stephen describes the spiritual warfare that Christians are to engage in as a battle within the heart - which is where we find the very depths of heaven.

10:44
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Nov 17, 2007

Christianity In A One-Story Universe - Part 5; Windows to Heaven

Fr. Stephen looks at the way icons help us to see the world as it truly is rather than as a window to a "second story."

13:13
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Nov 10, 2007

Christianity In A One-Story Universe - Part 4; Christian Atheism

Continuing with his illuminating series, in Part 4 Fr. Stephen Freeman discusses those (both non-Orthodox and Orthodox) for whom knowledge of God is but a relationship with a book (albeit a sacred book) or with ideas about God. These people are what Fr. Freeman calls "practical atheists." "Although a person may espouse a belief in God, it's quite possible for that belief to be so removed from everyday life that God's non-existence would make little difference."

12:24
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Nov 03, 2007

Christianity In A One-Story Universe - Part 3; God In The Ordinary

"It's not until we cease to divide the world into ordinary and extraordinary, into usual and unusual, into sacred and secular, that we will have either the possibility of knowing God, much less living the Christian life." -- Fr. Stephen Freeman

15:02
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Oct 27, 2007

Christianity In A One Story Universe - Part 2

Fr. Stephen continues his look at the world from an Orthodox perspective.

16:39 Transcript Available Direct link (play in browser) Play in Popup Download onestorey_2_pc.mp3
Oct 19, 2007

Christianity in a One-Storey Universe - Part 1

In his inaugural podcast, Fr. Stephen describes the Orthodox view of the world in terms we can all understand.

13:18 Transcript Available Direct link (play in browser) Play in Popup Download onestorey_1.mp3