Transcripts

Redeeming the Time

Redeeming the Time

A letter from a prisoner: the transformation of a self-reliant boy to a God-reliant man

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Fr. Seraphim Holland reads a letter from a prisoner who will be baptized this month.

This letter was read to me to me this week, two weeks before this now God-reliant man is to be baptized. I transcribed it from his handwritten copy. I have known him for a year. Prison ministry can be quite exhausting and even very frustrating (the devil is truly in the details), but the rewards are incalculable. It is always amazing and even surprising to see somebody “gets it”. I think God gives these kinds of consolations to pastors, and strugglers in general,…

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Redeeming the Time

A High Priest who Knows Our Infirmities

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The message of the Cross. The Cross tells us Jesus knows our infirmities and will help us. We explore this message from a passage from John Climacus and the Epistle read today. They are both about bringing our infirmities before God, and we know that we will be helped because of the cross.

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

I read the letter of Divine Ascent every Great Lent. It’s a book by St. John Climacus – we commemorate him next week. I recommend it to everybody, except perhaps some of chapter 5 for some of you. It’s really a remarkable book. It has things like this in it, that remind me very much about the cross.

“Let us who are weak and passionate have the courage to offer our infirmity…

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Redeeming the Time

Icons and the incarnation, and our salvation

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Exegesis of two hymns from the Vespers service for the Triumph of Orthodoxy, which teach the core dogmas of icons, and the incarnation, and how we are saved.

Exegesis of two hymns from the Vespers service for the Triumph of Orthodoxy, which teach the core dogmas of icons, and the incarnation, and how we are saved. Triumph of Orthodoxy, 2018-02-24

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

This is the first Sunday of great Lent; we call it the “Sunday of Orthodoxy”, or the “Commemoration of the Restoration of the Icons”.

Anytime we talk…

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Redeeming the Time

The Energy in Thankfulness

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The greatest personal truth for man and the exegesis of Colossians 1:12-18, and the 3 ways in which Jesus Christ is the "first born of every creature", and then, another unfortunate truth about man, as we examine the healing of the ten Lepers. Which are we - the nine, or the one? How do we make sure we are the one?

I want to tell you two things today. One is the most beautiful truth for man in the universe. It is inexplicable, it cannot be understood, it cannot be grasped, and yet—there is. The other is also inexplicable, but unfortunately, we can grasp it because of the proof of our own experience. Hello using photographs amuse and ever shall be how are you today about in the epistle today. Let’s discuss first the first truth of the universe, that directly impacts…

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Redeeming the Time

The Wiles of the Devil and Human Condition

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The healing of the woman who was bent over for 18 years and the Apostle Paul teach us the two causes of sin - the wiles of the devil and the human condition. We should blame these, and not our brother, since we share the infirmities of our brother. If we learn this skill, we will pray with compunction and power for our brother (and ourselves): ":Lord, have mercy on those who are bent over, and help them to rise up". Luke 13:10-17 Ephesians 6:11

In the name of Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, amen. I want to tell you two things today. One is a skill, and it will help you to not judge your brother, to walk humbly before God, and to be open to His truth. Without this skill, no one can make much progress, and the sad, terrible reality is that, if we do not have the skill, we do not even know what impairs our progress. The second thing is basically an application…

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Redeeming the Time

What shall I do?

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What shall I do? That was the question of the rich man who had a great harvest. The Scripture talks about "what we should do" today, in both the Epistle and the Gospel. They mention an incredible gift and incredible privilege. The Apostle Paul especially shows the greatest motivation a man can have for knowing what to do and doing it - that we can become "all goodness and righteousness and truth", and in making manifest these things, become light - that is, be united with God and be perfected. Ephesians 5:9-19 : Luke 12:16-21

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

“What shall I do?” That was the question of the rich man who had a great harvest. There are a lot of things to do every day: work, household tasks, shopping, and the list goes on and on.

But, how much do we that that really matters? It’s not so much what we do that makes something matter, is why we do it and how we do it. There’s only one thing that matters in…

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Redeeming the Time

At Daniel’s Funeral

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Remarks at the funeral of Daniel Holland (+Sunday of All Saints, 2017), from his father. His deep heart, and how and why we pray for the dead, and how we should remember him. It is with actions, not words.

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

I’ve written out only two sermons in my life. This is the second one, and the reason why is because I wanted to be able to say things and be able to get through them. The first sermon I ever said, where I had written almost all of it out, was for a wedding, of my daughter and Matthias, and it was a joyous occasion, and I had things I wanted to tell them. This, too, is a joyous occasion. There’s…

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Redeeming the Time

The Way of Life is Simple. Sin is Complex.

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The parable of the Publican and the Pharisee. Life is simple. If you know a few simple things, and do them, you will be saved. A description of the complex ways of sin, modeled by the verbosity and judgment of the Pharisee, and the simplicity of righteousness, as shown by the publican.

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

Today we are beginning the Lenten Triodion, so in four weeks we begin Great Lent. There’s really a lot that goes on in Great Lent, but it’s really very simple, because life is simple. There’s really not much you need to know to succeed in life. You just have to do what you know. Great Lent is all about repentance, so we start with the gospel for the publican and the Pharisee, this…

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Redeeming the Time

A Little Good Always Wins Over Bad

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Learning from the bad and the good in the gospels. What is the purpose of Great Lent, and how do we go about achieving it? The story of Zacchaeus (this is our story!), along with all the other gospels on the Sundays before Great Lent teaches that we can only give a little bit of good to God, but if we give what we have (with faith, and of course, effort), he will magnify our small effort, and it will always be greater than the bad we do. We must give something. We also take note of the sin of the Pharisees and how it makes a person unable to be saved, not matter whatever good or bad they do. Luke 19:1-10


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

This is one of five Sundays before Great Lent begins. We’re already in that period of time, preparing for Great Lent. This is sort of an unofficial beginning to the preparation, because we actually start using the Triodion next week, which is the book that we use for all of Great Lent and Holy Week, but Zacchaeus is kind of a beginning, because it’s the gospel that is said before…

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Redeeming the Time

Gregory Palamas: Purpose of the Baptism of Christ and Struggle in the Christian Life

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Theophany, based on the theology of St Gregory Palamas (Homily 60), and not only his theology, but the theology of the Church. An exposition of the Gospel read on Theophany, Matthew 3:13-17. The baptism of John contrasted with Christian baptism. The difference between the baptism of Christ and all the others John baptized. What did Jesus mean when he said, "Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfill all righteousness"? Our baptism requires many things from us. It makes us capable of all of these things. An important segue about the weakness of our age and struggle in the Christian life, and that struggle and success are not synonymous, and that we must be kind and never give up, or we will not be saved, no matter what other virtues we may have.

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

I was going to read you some things from St. Gregory Palamas, but I didn’t really mark it correctly, so I would stumble a bit, but he has an incredible homily about the baptism of Christ and what baptism means for us. If you read it, you’ll find out that everything I’ve been saying to you for 22 years I haven’t been making up, because that theology just permeates our church…

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