Spiritual Freedom

On the outskirts of Moscow, there is an Orthodox Christian memorial. The site, known as Butovo, once belonged to a private estate. The Soviets expropriated the land after the revolution and turned it into a firing range. It was there during Stalin’s purges that more than 20,000 “enemies of the . . . . Continue Reading »

A Gentle Orthodoxy

Modern Orthodox Thinkers: From the Philokalia to the Present Dayby andrew louthintervarsity, 383 pages, $28 When I saw Fr. Andrew Louth a couple of years ago and asked him what he was doing, he said he was writing some “little books.” Now that we have one of those books, we can see how modest . . . . Continue Reading »

A Blessedly Unpredictable Council

The Council at Crete turned out to be different from what both optimists and pessimists had expected. It did not resemble any icon of the Ecumenical Councils that we usually imagine. It was a council with a lot of pain and anxiety, before and during the event. But it was a true conciliar event. Continue Reading »

After Great Lent

Last Sunday Orthodox Christians around the world finally celebrated Pascha and proclaimed Christ risen from the dead. As in Western Christendom, Orthodox Easter is preceded by Holy Week—the liturgical pinnacle of the Orthodox Church. In this week of preparation and commemoration, our services, . . . . Continue Reading »

On the Great Council of the Orthodox Church

Already there is much talk about the Holy and Great Council of the Orthodox Church. Between now and June 19, 2016, when the council officially opens on the island of Crete, there will be many rumors and much spin. Some will be justified; like other patriarchal institutions, Orthodox Churches are not . . . . Continue Reading »