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Speaking the Truth in Love

Speaking the Truth

The Sunday of Orthodoxy

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As we celebrate the Triumph of Orthodoxy and the victory over iconoclasm, Fr. Tom gives a personal reflection on icons and their use and misuse.

Every year at the beginning of Great Lent, we have of course what is called technically the Feast of the Triumph of Orthodoxy. This celebration on the first Sunday of Lent commemorates the return of the holy icons to the Church and to the churches after more than a century of blood in which the icons were either removed from the churches completely or were placed at a height where they could not be venerated but could be only looked at for the sake of some type of…

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Speaking the Truth

St. Mary of Egypt

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Fr. Thomas contrasts the story of the fallen, then raised Mary of Alexandria with that of another Mary - the Theotokos.

At the end of the fifth week of Great Lent, and very particularly on the fifth Sunday, the Orthodox Church has all of its members and faithful Christians contemplating a very beloved and well-known person in Christian history for ancient Christians, and that is a woman named Mary of Egypt. On the matins of the Thursday of the fifth week, there is a penitential canon of St. Andrew of Crete that is read. That particular service, which is a long type of penitential vigil,…

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Speaking the Truth

Transfiguration - The Center of the Evangelical Narrative

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On August 6, we will celebrate the Transfiguration of our Lord, and Fr. Thomas Hopko helps us understand the pivotal nature of this event in Christian history.

If we read the synoptic gospels—that means the gospels of Mark, Matthew, and Luke, called synoptic because they kind of look the same and they have the same material; there’s always the synoptic question, how they are interrelated, and the scholars can debate that, but in any case, we have those three gospels: Mark and Matthew and Luke—I honestly believe, personally, that they pattern the Old Testament genre. I think Mark is a kind of an apocalyptic…

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Speaking the Truth

Keys to the Kingdom - St. Peter

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Fr. Thomas discusses "the rock" upon whom Christ built his Church and St. Peter's role in that early Church.

It is a practice of ancient Christianity to celebrate the memories of the Apostles Peter and Paul on the same day and to celebrate them together. It’s also the tradition that when monasteries or churches are dedicated to the memory of these apostles, who are called in Church the “all-laudable and foremost apostles,” the “chief apostles,” that that would be done together as well. You can find it in certain places where in the Orthodox…

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Speaking the Truth

Darwin and Christianity - Part 17: The Final Chapter

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In this final installment in his Darwin and Christianity series, Fr. Tom Hopko compares the task and method of natural science with the task and method of Christian theology.

This is number 17 in my reflections on natural science and Christian theology in relationship and being inspired by the so-called Darwinian revolution. In this final reflection, which I’m sure will not be final! There are questions coming in, comments, corrections, additions that, when I reflect through them, I’m sure that I’ll go on Ancient Faith Radio again and pick up some of these, but as far as the formal series is concerned, this will be my…

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Speaking the Truth

Darwin and Christianity - Part 16: Faith and Knowledge, Reason and Revelation

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This is the next-to-last episode in the Darwin series.

As we continue our reflections and our musings, musings about the relationship between Christian theology and natural science, we would like to raise the issue today for your contemplation and your own musings, your own reflection, your own thought, about how faith and knowledge relate to each other and how reason and revelation relate to each other. We could even say how faith relates to reason and how knowledge relates to revelation. Can you really speak about faith…

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Speaking the Truth

Darwin and Christianity - Part 15: Nature and Super-nature

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As Fr. Tom gets close to the end of his series on Darwin and Christianity, he reflects on the terms and concepts of nature and super-nature.

In our last couple of reflections on natural science and Christian theology in the light, so to speak, in the context of the Darwinian revolution, we reflected on the relationship of God and the world, and we tried to insist on the centrality of Christ and the incarnation of God in human flesh as the Man Jesus, and specifically on the crucifixion of Christ. We did that also when we reflected on death, the issue of death. We also, in the reflection on God and the world,…

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Speaking the Truth

Darwin and Christianity - Part 14: Meditation on Miracles

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What are some of the misunderstandings and misgivings about miracles, and how does that relate to natural science and Christian theology?

As we continue our “stream-of-consciousness musings,” as my reflections have been called—I really like that: “stream-of-consciousness musings.” In a sense, that is very much what we are doing here, especially when we are trying to come to terms with what is going on in natural science, but my musings are, of course, hopefully intended to help us to rethink, to rethink how we understand the relationship between what we come to know and…

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Speaking the Truth

Darwin and Christianity - Part 13: God and Creation

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Fr. Tom continues his series on Darwin and Christianity with some musings on God and Creation.

In our reflections on the relationship between natural science and Christian theology, we have been saying that it’s really very important that we would have accurate understandings, both of natural science—what it says, what it doesn’t say, what it claims, what it doesn’t claim—and that we would have accurate understanding about Christian theology—what Christian theology claims and what it doesn’t claim, what it thinks. Here,…

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Speaking the Truth

Not Made by Human Hands

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Fr. Thomas relates the story of the icon not made by hand which is celebrated each August after the Dormition of the Theotokos. Could it actually be the shroud of Turin?

When we were reflecting on the month of August, that strange last month of the ecclesiastical year in the Orthodox Church, I mentioned that there were three feasts of the Savior: August 1, the so-called first feast of the Savior, was the procession and celebration of the wood of the Cross that began the 15 days of prayer and fasting before the Dormition of the Theotokos. Then we mentioned the sixth of August, the celebration of the Christian festival of booths, the…

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