Category: Blog
138 results found.
Saint Nicholas - 12/17/21

In his most famous exploit, Nicholas aided a poor man who had three daughters, but could not afford a proper dowry for them. This meant that they would remain unmarried and probably, in absence of any other possible employment, would have to become prostitutes. Even if they did not, unmarried maidens in those days would have been assumed as being a prostitute. Hearing of the girls’ plight, Nicholas decided to help them, but being too modest to help the family in public (or to save them the humiliation of accepting charity), he went to the house under the cover of night and threw three purses (one for each daughter) filled with gold coins through the window opening into the house.

Holy Great Martyr Barbara - 12/09/21

The Holy Great Martyr Barbara lived and suffered during the reign of the emperor Maximian (305-311). Her father, the pagan Dioscorus, was a rich and illustrious man in the Syrian city of Heliopolis. After the death of his wife, he devoted himself to his only daughter.

Be a Healer! - 11/10/21

The Joy of All Who Sorrow Orthodox Christian Church in Indianapolis recently celebrated its Feast Day. We appreciated very much the following encouraging letter from Metropolitan Joseph, otherwise known as our Bishop: Beloved Fr. John, Fathers, Brothers and Sisters in the Lord, I greet you for your decision to celebrate our Church Name Day Joy […]

The Holy Elders Of Optina - 10/13/21

The Holy Elders Of Optina – Commemoration October 11/24 Prayer of the Optina Elders – suitable for all “O Lord, give me strength to face with serenity everything that this day will bring. Grant me to entrust myself fully to Your holy will. Every hour of this day teach me and support me. Whatever news […]

Saint Xenia of St. Petersburg, Fool for Christ - 09/29/21

Saint Xenia was a woman who gave away everything – her house, her money, her possessions, and even her name – who wandered homeless, and who has helped people resolve desperate situations ever since. She lived during the eighteenth century. The wife of Colonel Andrei Feodorovich Petrov, who served as a court chorister, Xenia fell […]

Exaltation of the Cross - 09/22/21

The Exaltation  of the Holy Cross is one of the Great Feasts of the Orthodox Church, celebrated on September 27 (old calendar). This feast is also referred to as the Elevation of the Cross. This feast commemorates two events: First, the finding of the Cross by the Empress Helen (the mother of St. Constantine the Great) on Golgotha in 326 AD, the […]

Overcoming Bitterness - 09/08/21

Overcoming Bitterness by Father George Morelli Ph.D. As we go on in life unfortunate things happen to us. Psychologist Albert Ellis (1962) described our reaction to such events this way: “we think. . . it is awful and catastrophic when things are not the way one would very much like them to be.” Frequently individuals […]

How an Attitude of Entitlement Undermines Marriage - 08/25/21

In response to our survey earlier this year, someone wrote that we should address “marriage faith afflictions.” We’re not sure what this means and therefore we didn’t know how to address it. Recently though, we found a series of articles on marriage written by Fr. George Morelli, a seasoned professional in the areas of Clinical […]

The Feast of the Dormition - 08/18/21

The Feast of the Dormition of the All-Holy and Blessed Virgin Mary, the Theotokos by Fr. George Dion Dragas The Place of the Theotokos in the Church: The Blessed Virgin Mary, the Theotokos (Mother of God) occupies next to Christ the most important place in Orthodox Christianity. This is most obvious in the Orthodox liturgical […]

Jesus: true God? true man? - 08/11/21

The Transfiguration by St. Ephraim the Syrian The facts themselves bear witness and his divine acts of power teach those who doubt that he is true God, and his sufferings show that he is true man. And if those who are feeble in understanding are not fully assured, they will pay the penalty on his […]

Saint Maria Skobtsova of Paris - 07/29/21

Recently, the  Orthodox Church commemorated one of my favorite saints, Saint Maria Skobtsova of Paris a twentieth century saint who devoted her life to serving the poor and the marginalized. She was one of the great saints of the last century and her life story is very inspirational for modern Christians. Not only was she a brilliant theologian who lived her faith bravely throughout the beginnings of Soviet Russia and World War II, finally dying a martyr’s death at the Ravensbruck concentration camp in Germany in 1945, but she was also a wonderful poet and artist. For Orthodox Christians, who desire to truly live by Christ’s commandments, her life serves as a beautiful example of the calling we are called to: to love God and to love others. The life of Saint Maria of Paris teaches us that not only is it important to have faith that moves mountains but that we must strive to see (in St. Maria’s own words)  that “Each person is the very icon of God incarnate in the world.” 

A Fool for Christ - 07/21/21

Let no one deceive himself. If anyone among you seems to be wise in this age, let him become a fool that he may become wise. For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, “He catches the wise in their own craftiness”. 1 Corinthians 3:18-19, New King James

Lessons From the Apostles’ Fast and Saints Peter and Paul - 07/08/21

In America the Fast of the Apostles is probably the least well known, but is among the oldest of Christian traditions. It is mentioned by St. Athanasius in the fourth century, and there are other testimonies to its existence very early in the history of the Church. The fast ends with the observance of the Feast of Sts. Peter and Paul on Monday, July 12.

Tasty Recipes for the Fast - 07/01/21

Every fast we try to provide new recipes to increase the variety in your diet with healthy dishes. The following were found on the internet and each source is noted.

Thinking Orthodox - 06/17/21

I must start this review by saying that I wish this book had been in print 20 years ago when I entered the Orthodox Church, it would have likely saved me some struggle, or not, but it would have been very beneficial. Now this book is available it will be very useful for those seeking to enter the Orthodox Church, for a convert or cradle Orthodox, or those who want a better understanding on the differences between the Orthodox and Western Christian mindset, or phronema. Our phronema impacts how we do theology, our mindset, and how we interact with the world around us. We all have one, and Dr. Constantinou carefully lays out what it is, how it is developed and nurtured, some of the differences between the Orthodox and Western Christian phronema and how these differences developed. Conversations between Eastern and Western Christians are often fraught, and this book provides context to understand why that is.

Anya’s Chernobyl Experience - 06/02/21

In response to our recent survey, there were mixed comments about featuring personal stories in the blog. One of our survey responders suggested that we “Highlight/feature the parishioners in our congregation [because] we are such an eclectic bunch!” Another was not as keen. Since the response was mixed, we decided to continue occasional stories about our members, while featuring saints and other stories about Orthodoxy at a greater rate. This week we showcase Anya Aslanova, our Parish Council President. If you missed the blog about Anya’s amazing life in Ukraine and successful transition to the USA, you can still read it at Who is She? (

The Holy Martyr Photini the Samaritan Woman - 05/26/21

The holy Martyr Photini was the Samaritan Woman, with whom the Savior conversed at Jacob’s Well (John. 4:5-42).

Daily Cycle of Prayer in the Orthodox Church - 05/20/21

“He who is able to pray correctly, even if he is the poorest of all people, is essentially the richest. And he who does not have proper prayer, is the poorest of all, even if he sits on a royal throne.” – St John Chrysostom

New Books in our Bookstore - 05/05/21

Nothing Will Separate Us: Working Through the Suffering and Death of a Loved One by Frederica de Graaf  (Mother Macaria says this one is excellent) “How do we respond to a patient or loved one facing death with all of our mind and heart, yet without trying to feel pain or emotions that are not our own? The person approaching death does not need us to live through their pain but to offer a creative response to suffering that is rooted in reverence and respect.”

Pascha – almost there! - 04/21/21

For the non-Orthodox readers of this blog, “Pascha” is the Orthodox name for our Easter, which we will celebrate on May 2nd  this year. According to The Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, “The First Ecumenical Council convened at Nicaea in 325 took up the issue. It determined that Pascha should be celebrated on the Sunday which follows the first full moon after the vernal equinox-the actual beginning of spring. If the full moon happens to fall on a Sunday, Pascha is observed the following Sunday. The day taken to be the invariable date of the vernal equinox is March 21. Hence, the determination of the date of Pascha is governed by a process dependent on the vernal equinox and the phase of the moon.”

St. John Climacus - 04/07/21

St. John Climacus is honored by the Church as a great ascetic and as the author of a remarkable work entitled, The Ladder of Divine Ascent, and therefore he has been named “Climacus,” or “of the Ladder.”

St. Ephraim the Syrian - 03/25/21

Although St. Ephraim is commemorated before the beginning of Great Lent, he is more particularly remembered during this time in connection with the well-known prayer he composed:

"O Lord and Master of my life, take from me the spirit of sloth, despair, lust of power, and idle talk. But give rather the spirit of chastity, humility, patience, and love to Thy servant. Yea, O Lord and King, grant me to see my own transgressions, and not to judge my brother, for blessed art Thou, unto ages of ages. Amen."

The Liberating Effect of Fasting - 03/11/21

Fasting, in our days, has become one of the most neglected spiritual values. Because of misunderstandings regarding the nature of fasting, because of confused and reversed priorities in its use, many of today’s Orthodox Christians fast very little, or disregard fasting altogether.

Thirty-One Things You May Not Know About St. Brigid - 02/11/21

1. Brigid was born in Ireland in 450 AD.

2. She was a disciple of St. Patrick, who baptized her parents, then her.

3. Brigid’s father was a pagan and married Brigid’s mother, a slave.

Saints on the Nativity of Christ - 01/28/21

“The Nativity of Christ. — He has come upon earth, He Who in the beginning created us from earth and breathed His Divine breath into us; He has come Who “giveth to all life, and breath, and all things” (Acts xvii. 25.); He has come, He Who by a single word called all things visible and invisible from non-existence into existence, Who by a word called into being birds, fishes, quadrupeds, insects, and all creatures, existing under His almighty providence and care; He has come, He Whom the innumerable hosts of Angels continually and joy. And in what humility has He come! He is born of a poor Virgin, in a cave, wrapped in poor swaddling clothes, and laid in a manger. Riches, honors, glory of this world! fall down, fall down in humility, tearful devotion, and deep gratitude before the Savior of men, and share your riches with the poor and needy. Do not pride yourselves on your visionary, fleeting distinctions, for true distinction can only be found in virtue. Glory of this world! learn here, before the manger, your vanity. Thus, let us all humble ourselves; let us all fall down in the dust before the boundless humility and exhaustion of the Sovereign of all, of God, Who has come to heal our infirmities, to save us from pride, vanity, corruption, and every sinful impurity.” + St. John of Kronstadt, My Life in Christ

Hey Man, What’s Up? - 12/23/20

“Hey Man, What’s Up?”, a true story by Mike On Tuesday, December 8th, 2020 I left work and locked the front door at around 8:20 p.m. I noticed that there was a car about halfway across the parking lot and there were a couple of people outside of the car.  That is not too unusual and […]

Everyday Saints and Other Stories - 12/09/20

A book review by Randy Hay Have you ever wondered what would happen if an Orthodox book managed to cross over to the mainstream market…and reveal our strange world in which fact is often stranger than literary fiction?  What if The Gurus, the Young Man, and Elder Paisios or Father Arseny skyrocketed up the New […]

Why We Love This Church! - 11/18/20

Joy of All Who Sorrow is a place where people find transformation in Jesus Christ through worship, education, fellowship, and service. It is a place where the endless beauty and majesty of God is revealed to us, as much as possible in this life. It is where sorrows and burdens are turned into means of […]

Racism and its Grounding in Shame and Disgust, Part II - 11/05/20

2020 Fellowship of St. Moses the Black Conference A Talk by Fr. Stephen Freeman on Shame, Part II Part I can be read at Some years back when I began doing this study on the topic of shame, which frankly was out of a deep personal need to deal with issues of shame in […]

Racism and its Grounding in Shame and Disgust - 10/28/20

2020 Fellowship of St. Moses the Black Conference A Talk by Fr. Stephen Freeman on Shame Part I My topic is looking at racism and its grounding in shame and disgust. And I want to begin with a quote from the book of Sirach, one of those books that many Orthodox Christians forget is in […]

Warrior of the God of Heaven - 10/08/20

Warrior of the God of Heaven: St. Nicetas the Goth Forget those things that aren’t worth remembering Troparion[i], Tone 3 Thou didst defeat error and triumph in martyrdom, Nicetas namesake of victory: for thou didst conquer the ranks of the enemy and end thy contest by fire. Pray to Christ our God to grant us […]

The Rhythms of the Church - 09/24/20

“A man living in the world once visited a wise elder.  “After a few pleasantries over tea, the man reached the point of his visit. “I am not at peace,” he said. “My life is busy, but my life is not meaningful. I am successful, but I am not happy.” “The elder replied, “My dear, […]
Filed Under: Blog, General

The Rhythm of Life - 09/10/20

What shall I render unto the Lord for all that He has rendered unto me? These are the words of the king and prophet David, recorded in Psalm 115. What shall I render unto the Lord for all that He has rendered unto me? When we search out all the things that we have, all […]

Saint Moses the Black - 09/02/20

Our featured person this week was a murderer, adulterer, and robber. Wait a minute. Aren’t we supposed to be writing about saints in the Orthodox Christian Church? I am – keep reading! St. Moses lived in Egypt during the fourth century. While still a slave, he committed murder and his master banished him. He soon […]

The Dormition of the Theotokos - 08/19/20

Kontakion (Tone 4)Today the universe dances with joy at your glorious memorial,And cries out to you, O Mother of God:“Rejoice, O Virgin, pride of Christians!” About the Icon The Theotokos is depicted upon the funeral bier. Christ, standing behind the Theotokos, is her Son, who has come to receive His Mother’s soul into heaven; He holds […]

Procession of the Honorable Wood of the Life-Giving Cross of the Lord - 08/06/20

The origin of this Feast is explained in the Greek Horologion of 1897: “Because of the illnesses which occur during the month of August, it was customary at Constantinople to carry the Precious Wood of the Cross in procession throughout the city for its sanctification, and to deliver it from sickness.” On the eve (July 31), the […]

Mother Katherine Weston - 07/22/20

Originally published Monday, July 20, 2020 by Mother Katherine Weston is our Woman of the Week. She was nominated for her work in racial reconciliation, her leadership of her monastery and of the Fellowship of St. Moses the Black, her iconography and writing, and her work as a psychotherapist. You can see her here […]

I Was my Mother’s First Heart Attack - 07/01/20

“I was my mother’s first heart attack.” So began our interview. Her mother Shirley, nine months pregnant and due at any time had a heart attack. An hour later she went into labor. No one remembers how long it lasted – the focus was on the issue at hand – would she live? This was […]

The Rhythm of the Church Calls Us to a More Human Way of Living: On the Apostles’ Fast - 06/18/20

The contemporary God is much the same as the contemporary diet – we want as much of Him as we want – anytime, anywhere. There is no rhythm to our desire, only the rise and fall of passions. By Archpriest Stephen Freeman  The Orthodox year has a rhythm, much like the tide coming in and […]

The Apostles Fast - 06/04/20

The Apostles Fast By Priest Brendan Pelphrey The Fast of the Apostles is probably the least well known, but is among the oldest of Christian traditions. It is mentioned by St. Athanasius in the fourth century, and there are other testimonies to its existence very early in the history of the Church. For faithful Orthodox, […]

The Saints: Our Living Helpers and Friends - 05/20/20

The Saints: Our Living Helpers and Friends By Abbot Tryphon According to St. Symeon the New Theologian, vigil lights are placed before the icons of the saints as a way of showing that without the light, who is Christ, the saints are nothing. It is only as the Light of Christ shines upon them that […]

Tulip Comfort During the Coronavirus - 05/07/20

This story was originally posted in our blog in 2018. Keep reading though, there’s a 2020 update at the end. My family lived in Holland when I was a child and my memories are mostly of flowers. Every home had a garden replete with blooms of many varieties but all included tulips. We took long […]

St. Seraphim - 04/15/20

By Mother Macaria I know why the Saint gave “Christ is Risen!” To every soul who came to him. I know the hidden need to give joy Or be flooded with all the world’s grief. In those deep nights of his prayer,              his Gethsemane, Kneeling on the rock hard heart of the world With […]

49 Commands of Christ - 04/09/20

By ITW Staff What are 49 Ways to Love God and Others? We are reminded in the 12 Gospel readings on Holy Thursday that Jesus gave his disciples a new commandment: “A new commandment I give unto you, that ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By […]

How to Live Without Resentment - 03/26/20

How to Live Without Resentment September 22, 2019 By Steve Beck First published at Carolyn Maull McKinstry carried resentment inside for much of her life. She turned to alcohol for numbing. She had trouble sleeping. Her relationships were strained. The hatred in her heart was wrecking her life. Until she realized that forgiveness — […]

The Nineveh Response to the CoronaVirus - 03/17/20

By Fr. Patrick Tishel The studies that are in process on the Coronavirus, from the standpoint of epidemiology, have generated statistical models of the spread of the virus, clarity about methods of transmission, and identifying who are most vulnerable.  This valuable information has led to a threefold response: a call to immediate social distancing to […]

The Heart of Ancient Mystical Christianity - 03/04/20

The earliest Christians, who lived in constant expectation of dying for their faith, found strength in the daily cycle of prayer services (which were themselves an outgrowth and fulfillment of the Jewish tradition). Jesus said, “My Kingdom is not of this world.” (Jn 18:36) Today, in the face of the increasing emptiness and alienation of […]

A Lenten “Recipe” - 02/27/20

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 Prayer During Holy and Great Lent we add to […]

St. Charalambos - 02/21/20

by Christina Dedoussis St. St Charalambos was a priest in the city of Magnesia, near Smyrna in Asia Minor. About 198 AD, Sevirus, the Emperor of the Roman Empire had appointed Loucius to govern Asia Minor. Many Christians were persecuted under his reign. At this time Charalambos was in Magnesia and openly taught the Christian […]

St. Matrona of Moscow - 02/06/20

The Blessed Saint Matrona is one of the most beloved Muscovite saints, who lived and worked miracles in our times, and her story and relics are cherished by all Russians. Now, English speakers can be glad to hear that a Russian TV series on this wonderful saint is available on YouTube with English subtitles. The […]

Who is She? - 01/23/20

Born in Ukraine, at 13 she learned English in two months, at 16 she shopped in black markets as a buyer for her uncle’s store, and later was a Freedom Support Act exchange student. Now she’s the President of our Parish Council. Who is she? In brief, Anya Aslanova has a track record of success […]

More New Books - 01/09/20

If you missed our list of new books in the bookstore, go back to last week’s blog and check it out. This week we feature nine new books that were not on last week’s list. Saints of England’s Golden Age: A Collection of the Lives of Holy Men and Women Who Flourished in Orthodox Christian […]

New in St. Seraphim Bookstore - 01/02/20

Celebrate the Feast of the Nativity by giving the gift of a better understanding of Orthodoxy, prayer, and the saints of God with these books now available in our bookstore. Or choose one for your own spiritual growth. St. Sergius: Beacon in the Wilderness of Radonezh (Children’s book) by George and Christian Danias           About […]

The Good Samaritan - 12/05/19

The Good Samaritan – a message given by Hieromonk Basil We hear today the familiar parable of the Good Samaritan. The moral of the parable is simple and clear—as we hear in another place of holy Scripture, Be ye merciful, as your Father in heaven is merciful (Luke 6:36). As with all Gospel commandments, its […]

Thanksgiving Contest with Prizes! - 11/19/19

In 1863, President Abraham Lincoln, considering the many blessings we have received from God, established the 4th Thursday in November as a “day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens,” writing, “No human counsel hath devised nor hath any mortal hand worked out these great things. They are the […]

Faithful Volunteer - 10/23/19

You might not have ever met him, but he has been a volunteer worker in the St. Seraphim Bookstore since 1996 (that’s 23 years for the mathematically challenged). Meet David-Thaddeus Estes, born in Champagne Illinois on April 21, 1955. He was the first of three brothers and two sisters. His Dad was a farmer who […]

Randy Hay - 10/09/19

By Anna Glass with Randy Hay Randy Hay and Anna Glass grew up together. Well, not exactly. Randy was born in Walnut Creek, California and when he was two years old Anna Glass was living just a few miles away in San Ramon, where she was in fourth grade. Anna’s family then moved to the […]

New Books at the Other Downtown Bookstore - 09/26/19

New Books in St. Seraphim’s Bookstore (the other downtown bookstore) This is a perfect opportunity to find something to inspire you during Advent or shop early for Christmas. NEW Testament EOB Portable. A zippered leather edition with the text approved by the Ecumenical Patriarch back in 1904. The EOB New Testament Portable is a unique […]

Christian, You Should Get Counseling - 09/11/19

By Eric Hyde It felt strange typing this title. If I didn’t have personal experience with Christians who believe that because they’re Christians, they have no need for counseling I would have never thought to write such an article. Many believers seem to view counseling as ‘church’ for unbelievers. Now, the possibility for Christians to have mental […]

Review of Papa-Dimitri, The Man of God - 08/29/19

Review of Papa-Dimitri, The Man of God (1902-1975) By Randy Hay The subtitle of this Orthodox Kypseli publication is “Life, Miracles and Spiritual Counsels of a Simple Priest of Our Days.” While this village priest may have been “simple” in terms of formal education, his spiritual knowledge was truly astonishing.  Fr. Dimitri was born of […]

Sermon on the Transfiguration - 08/15/19

Saint Gregory Palamas, former Archbishop of Thessalonica For an explanation of the present Feast and understanding of its truth, it is necessary for us to turn to the very start of today’s reading from the Gospel: “Now after six days Jesus took Peter, James and John his brother, and led them up onto a high […]

The Museum of Hurts - 07/19/19

Have you ever experienced the devastation of someone lashing out at you in anger for a perceived wrong? Maybe you were wrong, but sometimes the accusation is inaccurate and based on a problem in the accuser’s life. It hurts! And often in long-term or close relationships, the accuser starts with a recent “offence” and then […]

Prayer Reconciled Generations - 07/04/19

Mother and Grandmother My mother grew up on a farm on Clark’s Hill Indiana. She went to nursing school, became a registered nurse in the Army and met the man she married. After having two children, my father was deployed to Korea , and mom and the children went to live with her mother on […]

Stewardship – an opportunity to glorify God - 06/20/19

A message given by Sub-deacon Randy Hay and Board Member Ryan LaFerney Stewardship is an important part of living a Christian life.  It includes participating fully in the sacramental life of our parish, caring for the Church and our fellow parishioners, and it means supporting the life of the Church in every way we can […]

Dawn’s Gentle Light - 06/13/19

Dawn’s Gentle Light, a book review by Randy Hay One evening a little while back I decided to listen to an Ancient Faith podcast while I did my workout at the gym.  On a whim I put on an audio version of a recently published book, Dawn’s Gentle Light.   The other audiobooks I’d tried […]

The Riches of Proverbs - 05/30/19

Have you ever found yourself asking God for wisdom to handle a difficult situation, hoping to receive instruction of what to do? Help is already available in the Book of Proverbs. Why read Proverbs? Proverbs 1:1-7 opens the chapter with an explanation [paraphrased]: The proverbs of Solomon the son of David, king of Israel: (are […]

The Orthodox Church in America and Its Future - 05/15/19

Comments by Matthew Namee: The following homily was delivered by St. Nikolai Velimirovich in America, sometime between his (second) arrival in America in 1946 and his death in 1956. It was published in the journal Orthodox America, volume 19, number 5. … The whole homily is excellent, but the last part is especially relevant to Orthodox […]

A Call for a New Christian Culture - 05/03/19

April 1, 2019 · by Nicholas Kotar Used by permission of Ancient Faith The hum of air conditioning and the drab tan walls of the hotel conference room faded into the background as soon as I entered the already buzzing atmosphere of the WMG Anthology Workshop in Las Vegas. Fifty people absorbed in conversations […]

Considerations during Passion Week - 04/17/19

We have come to the last week of Great Lent. During this time, let us consider some major themes of our Orthodox lives in Christ. The chief end of our life The chief end of our life is to live in communion with God. To this end the Son of  God became incarnate, in order […]

God’s Message to Us - 04/11/19

A message given by Father Stevan March 24, 2019 I asked God what he wanted to say to you today and got an answer. I didn’t hear a voice but received more like a conviction that what seemed to be my own thought was in fact, His response. What I heard was, “Tell them I […]

Show Me Who You Are – Part II - 03/28/19

In our last blog, we posted “Show Me Who You Are – Part I,” a message by Father Stevan. You might want to read it before reading Part II below. This is the dialogue of a repentant person spoken here by an Athonite monk who is instrumental in renewing monastic life on Mount Athos. In […]

Show Me Who You Are – Part I - 03/20/19

Fr. Stevan Bauman The Lord said that we should take up our crosses and follow him and so we are. Remember this one phrase as we go through this today: “Show me who you are.” Remember that phrase. Today we are talking about repentance, the obstacles to it, and how to overcome them. So, we’re […]

Journey to Pascha - 02/27/19

Known to much of the world as Easter, Pascha is the term used by Orthodox Christians. “Pascha” is a transliteration of the Greek word, which is itself a transliteration of the Aramaic pascha, from the Hebrew pesach meaning Passover. It is the feast of the Resurrection of the Lord. Before Lent Begins The Journey to […]

Vladimir: interrogated by the Soviet Militia - 02/14/19

John Michael Patrick Branham, known to us by his Orthodox name Vladimir, was one of the last babies born at Wakeman Hospital Center at Camp Atterbury Military Hospital in Edinburgh, Indiana before the base deactivated. He has a younger sister, Marcie. They grew up in Indianapolis. His father served in the Army as part of […]

The Meeting of our Lord, God, and Savior Jesus Christ - 02/07/19

The Meeting of our Lord, God, and Savior Jesus Christ commemorates the presentation of Jesus in the Temple forty days after his birth. Joseph and Mary brought Jesus to present him and to offer a sacrifice according to what is said in the law of the Lord, “A pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons.” […]

How to Become a Holy Fool: Saint Xenia of St. Petersburg, Fool for Christ - 01/30/19

By Fr. Philip LeMasters It is easy to forget that our ways are not God’s ways, that there is usually a stark difference between what is popular and what is holy. He has given us some pretty unusual people to make that point clear through the example of their own lives.  They are known in […]

Ryan Timothy LaFerney: the wanna-be rock star librarian - 01/24/19

New Board Member Our new board member Ryan Timothy LaFerney has come a long way since his days of teenage rebellion, when he failed his driving test twice and became familiar with every other way to get to where he needed to be. Ryan was born in St. Louis, Missouri to a dad who managed […]

The Saints: Our Living Helpers and Friends - 01/10/19

The Saints: our living helpers and friends By Abbot Tryphon “According to St. Symeon the New Theologian, vigil lights are placed before the icons of the saints as a way of showing that without the light, who is Christ, the saints are nothing. It is only as the Light of Christ shines upon them that […]

Happy Name Day Father Stevan! - 01/03/19

St. Stephen The Holy Protomartyr and Archdeacon Stephen was the eldest of the seven deacons, appointed by the Apostles themselves, and therefore he is called “archdeacon.” He was the first Christian martyr, and he suffered for Christ when he was about thirty. In the words of Asterias, he was “the starting point of the martyrs, […]

The Orthodox Origins of the Christmas Tree - 12/19/18

By His Eminence Metropolitan Anthimos of Alexandroupolis It is usually said that the custom of the Christmas tree is foreign and western. But a manuscript of the British Museum (Add. 17265 of the 13th cent.) informs us that in 512 the Emperor Anastasios I built a church in the Monastery of Saint Gabriel in Tur […]

The Can Opener - 12/13/18

“For the needy shall not always be Forgotten: the expectation of the Poor shall not perish forever.” Psalm 9:18 As I shuffled through the post cards that had arrived by return mail, one in particular caught my eye. Unlike the others listing gift requests for children, this one included a request for Mildred, the mother. […]

Old World Village and Christmas Market: exciting new additions! - 11/29/18

On Friday, December 7th, 5 to 9 p.m. and Saturday, December 8th, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. our annual Old World Village and Christmas Market will be open and surprising you with some fun new additions at Joy of All Who Sorrow Orthodox Christian Church, 1516 N. Delaware Street, 46202. It’s a Festival of Light […]

Why Should I Live? - 11/15/18

by Anna Glass I have suffered from depression since I was a child. At the age of five I had reoccurring nightmares that I walked home only to find a large square hole in the ground where our house used to be. I didn’t know where my family went, and I didn’t know what to […]

St. Feofil: Fool for Christ - 11/09/18

“Feofil breaks the rule and order. . . . No one knows where he might read his prayers. . .. He barely participates in the . . . liturgy . . . He stands before the altar-table as if dumbfounded and requires constant direction . . ..he bends down and wipes his nose with the […]

What do the Ribbons Say? - 10/31/18

Have you ever wondered about the “ribbons” on the Joy of All Who Sorrow icon? They have words on them, but what do they say? When we finally found a version that was legible, it was in Russian! We asked people, “What do the ribbons say?” Everyone had a different answer. We wrote to monks […]

Saint John of Kronstadt: biography, works of wonder, and words of wisdom - 10/24/18

Saint John of Kronstadt, born as Ivan Ilyitch Sergieff, the son of poor peasant folk, was born on the 19th of October 1829 in the little village of Soura, in the province of Arkhangelsk in the far north of Russia. His parents, poor and simple though they were, took great pains with his education, both […]

Mike Drippé: the four pound baby who came home in a shoebox - 10/10/18

When Mike Drippé was born he weighed four pounds; he was brought home in a shoebox. His mom was divorced and lived with her parents, so his early years were spent at his grandparents’ house in Riffton, Pennsylvania. When he was three years old Mike was riding in a car with his uncle. This was […]

Jorge and Stefanida: fighting cancer with St. Nectarios - 09/26/18

Update: Jorge and Stefanida were interviewed on Ancient Faith Radio on Thursday, October 4, 2018. Listen to the broadcast at Many of you have been following the story of Jorge and Stefanida who were who were married on July 15 this year. Shortly after they met, Jorge was diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer. […]

Boiling Water - 09/20/18

Have you ever boiled water? Did any flies land on it? Then you know how to respond to temptation and defeat the adversary. Keep it in mind! “For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God […]

Patrick Snavley: a story of mental health - 09/13/18

We know him by his baptismal name, Patrick, but he was named Ronald, the youngest (by 3 minutes) of identical twin boys. His brother was Donald. They were preceded by a sister and followed by two more sisters. Living in Sydney, Ohio, Patrick’s father was a gas distributor who delivered gas to farms and companies […]

Illumining Shame, Anger, and Forgiveness - 08/30/18

“I remember a road trip, now well over a decade ago. A certain Fr. Gerasimos was driving and I was in the passenger seat with his older son—my godson—cozy between us. Father began to tell us a story about a nun, a little boy and their adventures in the woods. It wasn’t about me; it […]

The Dormition of the Theotokos (Mary) - 08/23/18

Kontakion (Tone 4) Today the universe dances with joy at your glorious memorial, And cries out to you, O Mother of God: “Rejoice, O Virgin, pride of Christians!” About the Icon The Theotokos is depicted upon the funeral bier. Christ, standing behind the Theotokos, is her Son, who has come to receive His Mother’s soul […]

The Transfiguration - 08/16/18

Sermon on the Transfiguration Saint Gregory Palamas, (1296 – 1359) Archbishop of Thessalonica For an explanation of the present Feast and understanding of its truth, it is necessary for us to turn to the very start of today’s reading from the Gospel: “Now after six days Jesus took Peter, James and John his brother, and […]

Receiving the Holy Spirit - 07/27/18

A message on receiving the Holy Spirit Saint Luke said in a parable about a rich man, “I will say to my soul ‘Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years; take your ease; eat, drink, and be merry.’ ”1  What an odd attitude to take toward one’s soul – “eat and drink.” […]

The Heart of Ancient Mystical Christianity - 07/18/18

The earliest Christians, who lived in constant expectation of dying for their faith, found strength in the daily cycle of prayer services (which were themselves an outgrowth and fulfillment of the Jewish tradition). Jesus said, “My Kingdom is not of this world.” (Jn 18:36) Today, in the face of the increasing emptiness and alienation of […]

Advice to a new bride - 07/11/18

Advice to all Christian women, but especially a new bride by Saint Gregory of Nazianzus “the Theologian” – 391 AD My daughter, For your wedding, I, your spiritual father Gregory, offer you this poem as a gift. And I consider it to be the best possible advice a father could offer to his beloved daughter. […]

What You Didn’t Know about Father Stevan - 06/28/18

At the age of five, he wanted to be a nuclear physicist. Now he is the Senior Priest in a church where the Choir Director is a nuclear engineer. Keep reading! Archpriest Stevan Bauman was born in 1944 of a father who spent his early years homesteading in New Mexico, raising cattle and doing dry […]

Wisdom from our fathers - 06/14/18

In Christian Orthodoxy we value scripture as well as the wisdom handed down from Church Fathers who were the Disciples of the Apostles and the Fathers who learned from them. Especially appropriate for Fathers’ Day, here we share some wisdom from Church Fathers. Speak well of those who speak evil of you. Pay good for […]

Synaxis of the Saints of North America - 06/06/18

On the second Sunday after Pentecost, each local Orthodox Church commemorates all the saints, known and unknown, who have shone forth in its territory. Accordingly, the Orthodox Church in America remembers the saints of North America on this day. Saints of all times, and in every country are seen as the fulfillment of God’s promise […]

History in the Making - 05/24/18

On Saturday, May 19, 2018 the family and friends of Joy of All Who Sorrow gathered to install a new time capsule and install a replacement date stone in the northeast corner of our building. The time capsule had been packed with many items that had been recommended by our parishioners. There were so many […]

Culture, Art and Discernment - 05/16/18

Culture, Art and Discernment by Mother Macaria If you don’t know the kind of person I am and I don’t know the kind of person you are a pattern that others made may prevail in the world and following the wrong god home we may miss our star. For there is many a small betrayal […]

FIRST LOVE - 05/09/18

Long-time parishioner, Mary Lee, upon visiting the spectacular violet-carpeted meadow behind the Drippé home, shared this award-winning poem she had written years ago: FIRST LOVE Walking through the meadow on a lovely springtime morn, I pause to savor the leafy clusters of violets casting shadows upon the earth for such a little while. The splendor […]

Tulips for Comfort - 05/02/18

My family lived in Holland when I was a child and my memories are mostly of flowers. Every home had a garden replete with blooms of many varieties but all included tulips. We took long drives into the countryside to entertain ourselves on weekends and I was mesmerized by the miles and miles of rows […]

Today’s Myrrhbearers - 04/26/18

Today’s Myrrhbearers By Archpriest Andrew Phillips Re-published here by permission Last week we recalled all those who beheld Christ’s Crucified and Risen Body: the Myrrhbearing Women; the Righteous Joseph of Arimathea and the Righteous Nicodemus. We can only imagine how difficult it must have been for them to associate with Christ at this time and to […]

Community - 04/19/18

After arriving in Indianapolis and attending Joy of All Who Sorrow, I discovered the people in this church are a true reflection of what it means to be a community. After each Sunday morning Divine Liturgy, we make our way to the hall for lunch. This routine helps to get to know the people quickly […]

North America’s best-kept secret - 04/05/18

By Father Cosmin Sicoe The Orthodox Church is often called North America’s best-kept secret because not many people on this continent know much about this church. I want to use this opportunity to tell you a few things about the church to which I belong. Historically, the Orthodox Church was started on the Day of […]

Blueberry Cake and Loving Lent - 03/28/18

by Popadia Juliana I did not grow up Orthodox, and my birthday memories are filled with sunshine and pool parties (as my birthday is in the summer and I grew up in Southern California). But I can imagine that it can be pretty disappointing for a child whose birthday is ALWAYS during Lent. That […]

IN PARTING - 03/22/18

Donald Bramkamp, brother of our long-time parishioner Mary Lee, passed away March 9th, 2018. He was considered a master poet and wrote his own eulogy years ago in this poem called “In Parting”. Please do not think of me when I am dead, for it would hurt me if you grieved, and yet, there is […]

Transforming Joy – Cornerstone of Community and Culture - 03/15/18

In 2015, Joy of All Who Sorrow Orthodox Christian Church raised a cross on the border of Indianapolis’ Old Northside and Herron-Morton neighborhoods as a sign of our long-term commitment to each other and the community. It is our beacon: we are here for you; all are welcome. Joy of All Who Sorrow holds a […]

If You Could Save Time - 03/01/18

Imagine you found a penny produced in 1918. What would be different about it compared to today’s penny? Known as a Lincoln wheat penny, it would have wheat stalks engraved on the lower outside edges of the reverse side. In average condition, it would be worth $45 today. Now imagine living in 2118 and you […]

Cartoon for Lent - 02/22/18

 One practice that would be helpful for most of us during Great Lent is to remove ourselves from the anger in the world. We’ve all seen it on Facebook, Twitter, in the media, etc. Instead of wanting politicians or some other person to change, let’s work on getting rid of the anger from our […]

Fasting in the Orthodox Church - 02/15/18

Preface: The start of the Great Lent Fast is Monday, February 19, 2018. We offer the following for those who want to follow the fast and those who are interested in knowing more about the Orthodox Church.  These guidelines, written by Hieromonk Seraphim Rose, are from the St. Herman Calendar, St. Herman of Alaska Brotherhood. […]

A Transforming Presence - 02/02/18

Drive along 16th or Delaware Streets near downtown Indianapolis, and you will come at their intersection to a large, red-brick church building that obviously has been there a long time. The simple, perhaps plain, exterior hides a heart which is pulsing with life. A Transforming Presence Look inside the church, and you’ll see one glimpse […]

The Healing Power of Anthropology - 01/26/18

Note: parenthetical numbers represent footnotes The picture painted of man through Orthodox anthropology is that of honor, freedom, sovereignty, and generally that of a beloved and royal child. All the theology of man’s existence emphasizes his honor from his formation to his eschatological fulfillment. Man is made in the image of God; meaning that he […]

Jiminy Cricket Broke My Heart - 01/16/18

I was five years old in 1958 and regularly watched the Disney show. Each week Jiminy Cricket crooned the same song to my listening ears: When you wish upon a star, makes no difference who you are Anything your heart desires will come to you. And each week I would go to bed and sob […]

Illuminating Shame, Anger and Forgivness - 01/01/18

“I remember a road trip, now well over a decade ago. A certain Fr. Gerasimos was driving and I was in the passenger seat with his older son—my godson—cozy between us. Father began to tell us a story about a nun, a little boy and their adventures in the woods. It wasn’t about me; it […]

The Can Opener - 12/07/17

“For the needy shall not always be Forgotten: the expectation of the Poor shall not perish forever.” Psalm 9:18 As I shuffled through the post cards that had arrived by return mail, one in particular caught my eye. Unlike the others listing gift requests for children, this one included a request for Mildred, the mother. […]

Santa Lucia - 11/24/17

Bread of all our hope – In the darkening world When the wind is full of teeth And the night a gaping mouth. On the brink of the world night, The final night, Night of the great soul-famine, Man, creations’s husbandman, Drowns in his own numbers – thousands and thousands fall into the bottomless night, […]

Why Give Thanks? - 11/16/17

Why give thanks? Because it’s the will of God: In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 1 Thessalonians 5:18 Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever. 1 Chronicles 16:34 Sing praise to the Lord, you saints of His, […]

Why is There a Line of People? - 10/26/17

by Randall Hay One of the most moving sights in our church – for me, at least – is a line of people waiting to confess to the priest. These lines include all kinds of parishioners: mothers, fathers, children; sub deacons in cassocks, nuns; octogenarians, young adults and everyone in between. In the Orthodox Church, […]

Video Release: The Joy of Stained Glass - 10/19/17

Joy of All Who Sorrow Orthodox Christian Church received a Historic Preservation Education Grant to fund a series of four videos that showcase the restoration projects that have been accomplished in our church. The project is called, “Expressions of Joy,” and our first video is, “The Joy of Stained Glass.” This is the public release […]

Immersed in Evil – Then Saved by Christ - 10/12/17

Séances, astrology, Ouija Boards, palm reading, Tarot cards, and more – all attempts to circumvent God and find knowledge through the dark side. And despite the many warnings in scripture against such things, we are often tempted to dabble in one or more of these. “Just for fun,” we tell ourselves, “It’s harmless.” Some serious […]

Wisdom from God is Available to You - 10/05/17

When Sergius of Radonezh (known as Bartholomew before he became a monk), was growing up, his ability to learn did not match that of his two brothers. Then one day he met an old monk who, after Bartholomew explained his difficulties, gave Bartholomew a small piece of communion bread with the blessing, “Take and eat […]

Dateline: October 11, 1280 - 09/29/17

Dateline: October 11, 1280 Mount Athos Yesterday, 22 monks and 4 laymen of the Orthodox faith were martyred by Latin crusaders. The martyrs were burned alive after refusal to accept union with another faith as ordered by Byzantine emperor Michael VIII Paleologos. Wanting to secure his throne, the emperor gave allowance for Crusaders together with […]

Orthodoxy in the Public Library - 09/21/17

There’s one thing avid readers and occasional readers can agree on: books are getting expensive! That’s why we were thrilled when the public library came to Mother Macaria (our bookstore manager) and asked for a list of recommended books they could purchase for the library. Since then, she has sold quite a few books to […]

Martyred for Instructing Children in Christian Piety - 09/14/17

Who is Martyr Babylas? During his reign as emperor (284-305), Maximian renewed persecution against Christians. Saint Babylas was denounced as someone who was instructing children in Christian piety, which is defined by Merriam-Webster as “fidelity to natural obligations (as to parents) and dutifulness in religion.” When Babylas was brought before the emperor, he confessed faith […]

One Person’s View - 08/31/17

After arriving in Indianapolis and attending Joy of All Who Sorrow, I discovered the people in this church are a true reflection of what it means to be a community. After each Sunday morning Divine Liturgy, we make our way to the hall for a group lunch. This routine helps to get to know people […]

Dormition of Theotokos - 08/17/17

We have begun the Dormition Fast in honor of the Theotokos (Mother of God) and in preparation for the feast of Her Falling Asleep, or Dormition on the August 28th. An ancient account, preserved in Christian history, recounts some of the words which the Mother of our Lord said before she herself was about to […]

An appeal to St. Herman of Alaska - 08/01/17

An appeal to St. Herman of Alaska, an 18th century Russian monk serving as a missionary in Alaska. O Almighty God, we praise and glorify Thee, Our Lord and Creator. All the earth and everything within it acknowledges Thee as Creator, the Eternal Father. Heaven and Earth, Angels and Men, together, praise and glorify Thee, […]

Summer Storm - 07/14/17

Summer Storm (St. Pachomius Skete) Afternoons like this can never be long enough – We wait on the porch for the promised storm, Beneath the booming of Ozark thunder, Wait for the wind to push the torpid air From us, disperse the sour humors drawn out By poultice of stillness. The hardwoods begin to wave […]

I Confess - 07/05/17

As a recent convert to Orthodoxy, I make a habit of looking up the various occasions during which we fast or celebrate to learn more about them. At the beginning of the Apostles Fast, I found “What is the Apostles Fast?”, an excellent article by Fr. Brendan Pelphrey. With permission, I share a paragraph from […]

Visiting St. John Maximovich - 06/28/17

The week I was scheduled to move from California to Indianapolis, I found out about St. John Maximovich. Over the phone Mary L. encouraged me to go “visit” him in San Francisco. “Visit” was a strange choice of words to me because the man was dead (or as I later learned to say, “reposed”). Not […]

Celebrate! - 06/21/17

Joy of All Who Sorrow has been awarded a Historic Preservation Education Grant from Indiana Humanities and Indiana Landmarks in cooperation with the National Endowment for the Humanities. This is a big deal! The grant will enable us to produce 4 short (up to 5 minutes each) educational videos, each depicting a different historic preservation project […]

In Memoriam - 06/14/17

By Lori Hay We all have difficult people in our lives. Some come and go. Some stay, setting up camp in our minds and eventually working their way into our hearts. If we let them. Nun Theophania entered my life 10 years ago. Initially, I offered rides from another part of the city to our […]

Finding Joy - 06/05/17

I spent two years in California after having lived in Texas for thirty-five years. Living with my brother and sister-in-law while looking for affordable housing, I enjoyed taking on-line courses and pursuing growth in my spiritual life for the first time in a long time. I developed a particular interest in the sermons of a […]

Installation of the Cross at Joy of All Who Sorrow - 02/28/17

The installation of the Holy Cross at the top of our church was a wonderful milestone for our Church community. Let the cross break every yoke of man, and proclaim liberty throughout the land. By the Life-Creating Cross, the devil is put to shame, illusion is shattered, kings are humbled, and we are saved!




1516 N DELAWARE ST. INDIANAPOLIS, IN, 46202 · (317) 637-1897