by Father John Miller
In preparing for Lent, we often look for recipes that are suitable for the strict fast that we follow. Offered here is a recipe to prepare for Christ to “come and sanctify us.” The ingredients are prayer, fasting, alms-giving, confession, and study
During Holy and Great Lent we add to our regular prayers the Prayer of St. Ephraim the Syrian. Say this prayer every morning when you wake up and every night before you go to bed (with prostrations, if you’re able):
O Lord and Master of my life, a spirit of idleness, despondency, ambition and idle talking give me not. (prostration)
But rather a spirit of chastity, humble mindedness, patience, and love bestow upon me Thy servant. (prostration)
Yea, O Lord, King, grant me to see my failings and not condemn my brother, for blessed art Thou unto the ages of ages. Amen (prostration)
We fastfrom all animal products: meat, dairy, eggs, and fish. Everyone has a blessing to fast this way. If you want to fast differently because of some need please talk to Fr. John, Fr. Stevan, or your current spiritual father.
During Lent give more. Give to the church, pick a charity to give to, reach out to someone in need, share the faith by inviting someone to church and the community lunch following, choose to be generous and loving in your thoughts and deeds.
Examine yourself and confessyour sins. Pray that God reveal to you your own sins and failings so that you can “unload” them by confessing them to Christ in the presence of His Church in the person of the priest.
Studythe Holy Scriptures and choose a spiritual book to read or join the book-study* during lent to deepen your experience of the faith.
* Adult Education classes will begin on Wednesday, March 11 at 7:30 p.m. with a book study using How to be a Sinner by Peter Bouteneff (available in our St. Seraphim Bookstore). Mother Macaria is offering a 10% discount on the book to anyone who buys it before the first class (March 11, 2020)!
Father John Miller is the Presiding Priest of Joy of All Who Sorrow. He and his wife Popadia Juliana have three delightful children. Fr. John is looking forward to the book study (see above) and hopes that you will participate.