Sermon on New Year
Anthony Bloom Metropolitan of Sourozh
1 January 1972
In the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost.
I want to say a few words about this new year which truly is the beginning of a new time and of a new era in the life of mankind.
We live now in a time when not only God has become man, has entered into the destiny of mankind, but when in the Resurrection and the glorious Ascension of God, the Son of God, our human flesh, and together with it all that is the matter of this world has been taken to the very heart of the divine mystery; and on earth we live in a time when the Holy Spirit that was given to the Church at the day of Pentecost is mighty at work, transforming the world into what it is called to be.
The Church is the place where this happens and the Christians are the people who have knowledge of it and experience of it, and every single Christian is a man to whom the Lord Jesus Christ has entrusted other men. We, Christians, in the midst of a world that seems to wax ever older, should be a revelation of newness of life, of a newness that brings forth, day after day, by the power of the Spirit of God within us and in our midst.
We have been praying that God would bless this coming year; the greatest blessing that we can bring to this world would be that we, Christians, should truly become Christ’s disciples and a revelation of the love of God. Let us enter this year aware of the fact that we alone are already now in possession, however incipiently, of the things to come, that for us the future is already part of the present, not only by faith, not only in hope, but in true and real experience.
And may God give us to bring into His world this certainty of faith, this (suspense) and exaltation of hope and this love which is such abundance of life that he who possesses it is prepared to pour it out, to lay it down that others may live. Then really, truly for all those who come to this church, for all those who will be in touch with us this new year will be a year of blessing.
Let us remember in our prayers those who will carry more that we do, the weight and the Cross of a year: our Patriarch, the Bishops, the priests, the monks, the believers of the Church of Russia and of all the persecuted and oppressed Churches.
Let us pray for them, but let us also humbly ask God to hear the prayers which they pray for us that we may be worthy of our calling together with them.
Let us have faith in those who fight the good fight under conditions of life which are beyond our strength.
Let us also remember those who have departed this life and whose life indeed is our life; those whose faith has given us our faith, those whose experience of God lives in the Church, those whose faithfulness has built the Society of God. Let us remember them. May God give them peace, rest and joy. And let us so live that at the day of Judgement our life should appear like a fruitful field on which we will have sown the word of truth, the example of a true and worthy life; a field from which a harvest will be taken which will be their glory and our gratitude.
Let us now sing for all those who are alive our (song) of many years and then let us end by proclaiming eternal memory for them who have departed this life and who live in our heart. Amen.
St. Iakovos Tsalikis of Evia
I always say ‘’Glory To God’’. Always with my patience, with my faith in God, “the name of the Lord is blessed”!
Have God’s faith as a sinewache and all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, ye shall receive.
You have God’s faith. Ask and you will be given.
“Fasting is a commandment of God. Because of this, we should also fast, my children. I have not neglected fasting in my 70 years. My mother taught me fasting from childhood. Because within our body inhabits an eternal soul. Therefore, let us take care for our soul, which is truly an immortal thing.
Let us fast, my children, do not listen to those who say that fasting is nothing, and that this is something from monks. This is not from monks, my children, forgive me, God says this. The first commandment of God is fasting, and our Christ fasted. : ‘without prayer and fasting’ (Matthew 17:21, Mark 9:29), which our Christ says, and other things.’ And the demons, and sicknesses, and all the passions are cast out with fasting. The Holy Forerunner, what did he eat in the desert? What did the Venerable David eat? With an antidoron, he passed the whole week in his cell of asceticism.”
“No prayer, my children, gets lost. Prayer has sustained me for many years.”
‘’When the priest cuts of the particles from the prosphora and commemorates the names of the faithful during the prothesis, and angel of the Lord descends and takes this commemoration and places it before the throne of Christ as a prayer for those commemorated.’’
“Today that you have communed,” he said to one of his spiritual children, “do you see how you feel? This is how I always feel. Christ is always in me.”
When he became abbot he always said that he wasn’t responsible for what happened in the monastery: ‘Saint David’s the abbot here’, he maintained.
‘I whisper something in the ear of the Saint and he gets me a direct line to the Lord’.
He used to say: ‘I do nothing. Whatever I do, it’s God doing it. Saint David brings me up to the mark for it’.
Holy Elder Eumenios Saridakis
The more humiliated one is, the more he is sanctified.
Never blame anyone
To see the virtues of others and our own flaws. That’s what God wants. So it’s nice.
If you forgive your enemies and endure the sorrows you are in God’s way.
“If your heart becomes one with Christ’s heart, you feel what He feels”.
“Lord Jesus Christ, I want You to save all people”.
Holy Elder Ignatius Kapnisis of Evia
Humility is the key of Paradise.
The humble do not do evil, even to those who cause them evil.
Only the meek and humble enter the Kingdom of Heaven.
All the Holy Fathers lead to: Perfect Christian will say humble man.
The Lord throughout his life taught and applied the humiliation.
John the Blessed, Photios Kontoglou
At the Gate of the Year. God is the Lord of history… Metropolitan Anthony of Sourozh
Paradise is not a place on the map. Fr.Thomas Hopko
Establish, O Good One, the fruitful vine, which your right hand has planted with love upon the earth, preserving your Church, O All-powerful.
Grant, Lord, that those who in faith sing your praise as God of the universe, may pass through this year abounding in spiritual works, well-pleasing to God.
Apolytikion of Christ’s Circumcision in the First Tone
Our human form hast Thou taken on Thyself without change, O greatly-compassionate Master, though being God by nature; fulfilling the Law, Thou willingly receivest circumcision in the flesh, that Thou mightest end the shadow and roll away the veil of our sinful passions. Glory be to Thy goodness unto us. Glory be to Thy compassion. Glory, O Word, to Thine inexpressible condescension.
Apolytikion of St. Basil the Great in the First Tone
Your voice resounded throughout the world that received your word by which, in godly manner, you taught dogma, clarified the nature of beings, and set in order the character of people. Venerable father, Royal Priesthood, intercede to Christ God to grant us great mercy.