Saturday, October 14, 2017

Lumière de l'icône, lumière qui n'a pas de soir.


Frèsque du  Christ Pantocrator
au Monastère Saint Jean Baptiste, Douma, Liban.


 La lumière de l’icône n'est pas de ce siècle. Elle ne vient pas de l'extérieur éclairer en passant. C'est de l'icône elle-même, des visages des Saints et de la création transfigurée, que se répand une lumière sereine, reposante et joyeuse, comme une grâce et un don du Saint-Esprit: les icônes qui représentent des événements qui eurent lieu le jour ne sont pas plus lumineuses que les autres qui nous montrent des événements qui eurent lieu la nuit. La Sainte Cène, la prière à Gethsémani ne sont pas plus sombres que la rencontre du Seigneur et de la Samaritaine au puits de Jacob, que la Résurrection et que la Pentecôte.

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Praying the Jesus Prayer showed me Christ.


In the midst of a painful health crisis, a simple prayer revealed God’s presence not only in the midst of the writer’s own suffering, but also in the suffering of others.

I am no stranger to physical pain. For years, I have suffered from migraines, endometriosis and hip issues; my epidural failed during labor; and in college, I was hospitalized for two and a half weeks for a complicated case of appendicitis. But the suffering I experienced during my most recent health scare -- portal vein thrombosis, a series of three clots blocking my liver’s main blood vessel -- was different.
    Excruciating and intense, the pain and all that came with it left me disoriented and then reoriented. It moved me to lament and to trust. It brought me suffering, but also mercy.

Saturday, September 30, 2017

“Chante et ne cesse jamais de chanter”...
Saint Jean Coucouzèle et l'icône Notre Dame Coucouzelissa.


    Notre Père Jean Coucouzèle naquit à Dyrachion (ou Justiniana Prima) en Illyrie sous la dynastie des Comnènes (12e s, ou, selon certains, seulement à la fin du 15e s). Orphelin de père, il fut confié par sa mère aux meilleurs maîtres et reçut une éducation soignée. II fut bientôt remarqué pour sa voix angélique et devint le meilleur des chantres de la cour et le favori de l'empereur. Ce dernier désirait marier Jean avantageusement, mais, secrètement, le jeune homme n'aspirait qu'à quitter le monde et à embrasser la vie des moines. Une visite de l'higoumène de la Grande-Lavra fut l'occasion que Dieu lui offrit. Il se présenta à l'higoumène sans dévoiler son identité et, après une épreuve de quelques jours, celui-ci le revêtit de l'habit angélique et l'emmena avec lui sur la Sainte Montagne.

Saturday, September 23, 2017

When I read the book of Elder Silouan...
Elder Iliy on St. Silouan the Athonite .


Schema-Archimandrite Iliy (Nozdrin), spiritual father of His Holiness, Patriarch Kirill, ascetically struggled on Mt. Athos for more than ten years in one of the sketes of St. Panteleimon Monastery—the Old Russikon. Namely there, at the mill just a few decades earlier Venerable Silouan the Athonite carried out his obedience. In 1967 the book of his life and teachings became a spiritual guide for the now-revered elder, then novice Alexei of the Pskov Caves Monastery.     

   When I read the book of Elder Silouan it opened up a bright expanse for me where I found what I needed—answers to my various questions. Generally speaking, the book gave a clear and concise presentation of the content of our faith.
    Elder Silouan is a modern ascetic. In him there was no hypocrisy, no delusion. He wrote and spoke by the grace of God. That which the Lord revealed to him by the Holy Spirit he heard and repeated. He was a man without higher education, although he did have some schooling of course. His book became acclaimed. He didn’t write it himself, but rather wrote it from his words. It was translated into I don’t know how many languages, but more than ten for sure. Believers who turn to this book seeking truth— the Truth, find it. I can’t speak about this book with high enough praise and gratefulness to Elder Silouan.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

La Croix de "Godenovo".

   L’image de la croix pure et vivifiante du Seigneur de Godenovo est un objet sacré unique, qui a près de 600 ans. Elle est conservée dans une petite église de campagne perdue au fond de la Russie, mais des milliers de gens viennent chaque jour la vénérer. En 1423, dans le marais Sakhotskoïe (actuellement dans la région d’Ivanovo), furent découverts la Croix du Seigneur et une icône de saint Nicolas.

Saturday, September 9, 2017

"Your birth Theotokos proclaimed joy throughout the ecumene...."
Homily on the Nativity of the Theotokos (Saint Luke of Simferopol).


     The vast majority of people, millions and billions of people, are common people, whom Holy Scripture calls "people of the earth" (2 Chron. 15:5). Why are they called this? Because they resemble gray grass or undergrowth. They don't have higher goals and aspirations in their lives, their minds are very superficial and only deal with living concerns, earthly goods and daily problems. But just as hills and mountains, which are covered with grass and shrubs, occasionally grow large cedars and huge oaks, so also among the people of the earth the Lord God reveals some very great people,

Saturday, September 2, 2017

PEUT-ËTRE CETTE NUIT, JE FRAPPERAI! CHEZ TOI.

Cette prière fut trouvée dans la poche d'un soldat inconnu tombé pendant La Seconde Guerre Mondiale. Cri de foi bouleversant  jailli dans l'âme d'un combattant converti pour avoir senti la présence aimante de Dieu dans la beauté du monde, cri d'espérance au seuil de la mort qui semble inéluctable.


    M'entends-tu, mon Dieu?
    Jamais de ma vie je ne t'ai parlé, mais aujourd'hui je veux te saluer.
    Tu sais que depuis ma plus tendre enfance on m'a dit que tu n'existais pas, et moi, j'étais si bête que je l'ai cru.
    Jamais je n'avais eu conscience de la beauté de ta création.
    Aujourd'hui, soudain, en voyant les profondeurs de l'immensité,
    Ce ciel étoilé au-dessus de moi, mes yeux se sont ouverts.
    Émerveillé, j'ai compris sa lumière

Saturday, August 26, 2017

A Letter of Father Archimandrite Moses of Optina
to his Cousin the Nun Maximilla.



Most honorable among nuns, dearest sister Maximilla Ivanovna,


    Be strong in the Lord!
    I was glad to receive your welcome letter in good order. I thank you most kindly for everything. Do keep writing to me, and do not make this difficult for yourself. Write to me simply, whatever you feel, and just write as you speak. You do not need to go into detail about your devotion and love for me, because I have known that for a long time.
Write to me mostly about yourself and the kind of spiritual infirmities and trials you have, so that for my part I will be able to show you sympathy for the sake of your spiritual welfare, instead of mere useless affection.
    Of course you and I, who are feeble, have no need to con­verse about great feats of asceticism and exalted virtues­ just about weaknesses and the trials of life. I was pleased with this last letter of yours-that is what they should always be like. You write to me straightforwardly and trustingly concerning your infirmity.