Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Pentecost Podcasts

Earn some credits during this summer break that will count towards next year's credit tally. To start, here are some podcasts for Pentecost. To receive credit, listen to the podcast, fill out the podcast worksheet, and e-mail it to else10(at)gmail(d0t)com.

Pentecost: Our Roots. On Theologically Thinking, Fr. Demetrios Tonias Pastor of the Taxiarchae Church in Watertown Mass speaks on Pentecost; our roots in Temple Judaism and the influence on our worship today. Listen now.

Pentecost: A Harvest. On Special Moments in Orthodoxy, Fr. Christopher speaks with Fr. David Smith the host of OCN’S Podcast Harmony of Thunder to discuss Pentecost: “A Harvest for Distribution and a Sustenance for Continuation”. Listen now.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Summer Reading Program!

Summer is a great time to get a head-start on next term's Orthodox and spiritual reading! See below for the books you can read for credit. Simply fill out the General Worksheet for Books for each title you read and send it to else10(at)gmail(d0t)com for credit! More details below...

Read 3 books, get 10 points!
June 1 to September 1, 2011

Gender: Men, Women, Sex and Feminism
by Frederica Mathewes-Green
"Is hell a male-only club?" Frederica asks this provocative question as she takes us on a journey through her early years as a feminist, her conversion to Christianity, and the realization that men and women are unique yet equal. She gives us glimpses into her meetings with prominent feminists, takes us through Crisis Pregnancy Centers and explores the provocative idea of early marriage as a way to mature and healthy adulthood. Sure to make you think and react, this is a great book to give to friends, for lively discussions on some of the most important issues facing us today. This excellent book is first in a four part series, which provides a selection of Frederica's best writings on contemporary issues relating to Gender, Culture, Ethics, and Faith. Her original and thoughtful insights are expressed in a style that is fresh, personal, and frequently humorous. She examines modern-day challenges from a perspective of ancient wisdom, as one who seeks to be deeply grounded in the faith of the early Christian Church. Get it from Amazon.

Orthodoxy and Heterodoxy: Exploring Belief Systems through the Lens of the Ancient Christian Faith
by Fr. Andrew Stephen Damick

Are you an Orthodox Christian who wonders how to explain to your Baptist grandmother, your Buddhist neighbor, or the Jehovah's Witness at your door how your faith differs from theirs? Or are you a member of another faith who is curious what Orthodoxy is all about? Look no further. In Orthodoxy and Heterodoxy, Fr. Andrew Stephen Damick covers the gamut of ancient heresies, modern Christian denominations, fringe groups, and major world religions, highlighting the main points of each faith. This book is an invaluable reference for anyone who wants to understand the faiths of those they come in contact with, as well as their own. Get it from Conciliar Press.

Turning the Heart to God
by St Theophan the Recluse
One of the most profound works on repentance in all of Christendom. St. Theophan, a beloved Orthodox bishop from nineteenth-century Russia, speaks not only from a deep knowledge of the Church Fathers, but also from a lifetime of experience in turning his heart to God-and guiding others on this glorious Way that leads to our salvation. His writings are unique in that he combines centuries of Church wisdom with keen psychological insights for us today. Repentance is not a popular term here in the West, yet it is the cornerstone of the Lord's gospel, and the entrance into God's kingdom. Turning the Heart to God is a manual of true spiritual transformation in a world of often cheap grace--a classic book that has the power to change our lives, if we let it. Get it from Amazon.

Everywhere Present
by Fr Stephen Freeman
Have you ever referred to God as "the Man upstairs"? Most Christians living in a secular society have unwittingly relegated God and all things spiritual to the "second storey" of the universe: a realm we cannot reach except through death. The effect of this is to banish God, along with the saints and angels, from our everyday lives. In Everywhere Present, popular blogger and podcaster Fr. Stephen Freeman makes a compelling case for becoming aware of God's living and active presence in every moment of our lives here and now. Learning to practice your Christian faith in a one-storey universe will change your life, and make possible the living, intimate relationship with God you've always dreamed of. Get it from Conciliar Press.

Living in Christ: Essays on the Christian Life by an Orthodox Nun
by Mother Raphaela Wilkinson
This collection of essays stuns the reader at every turn of the page...both an enticing depiction of abundant life in Jesus Christ and a warning of the persona sacrifice and labor necessity to acquire it. Ironically she compels her audience to desire to live honestly and in joyous communion with God while cautioning that such spiritual growth comes neither by magic, nor feigned piety, nor laziness. It comes by 'proven ability to be responsible and willing to work, plus the inner resources to function or stimulation' These essays are for those who are serious about giving up excuses, complaints, ingrained bad habits and the blame of others for all their problems. They are not 'chicken soup for the soul;' They are strong medicine for intransigent sin. They are the cold showers for hot passions that have led us to anxiety, depression, power trips, and problems with relationships. They are gems of sound, solid advice to water a parched soul. Mother Raphaela is abbess of Holy Myrrhbearers Monastery in Otego, New York. Drawing on her experience inside and outside monastic life, her practical wisdom crosses the boundaries of the monastic community and is valuable to anyone trying to walk a Christian path. Get it from Amazon.

Questions about the summer reading program? E-mail else10(at)gmail(d0t)com.

School Awards

The Ascension

The 2010-2011 school year has now ended, and the School of the 70 is pleased to announce the following school prizes:

First Place -- Staci, with 32 credits. Staci will get an icon of Christ.
Second Place -- Luba, with 18 credits. Luba will get a CD of Orthodox music.
Third Place -- Claudia, with 9 credits. Claudia will get an Orthodox prayer book.

Congratulations and God's blessings to all!

Prizes will be sent out next week.

Stay tuned for a post on the summer reading program. Read books during the summer and earn credits towards next year's tally.

The next "formal" school term begins September 1, 2011. You can begin enrolling or re-enrolling now! If you have any questions, please email else10(at)gmail(d0t)com.