On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, “Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; he has risen!”
–from Luke chapter 24
Why Easter, and not Christmas, is Central for Orthodox Christians
In Western Christianity the emphasis of the yearly worship cycles is on the Nativity, rather than the Resurrection. The reasons for this are deeply embedded in the differences between the theological traditions of the Eastern and Western churches…
“Peace be with you.”
Those were the first words spoken by Jesus upon appearing to his disciples on Easter. This was later in the day, in the evening, after he had already appeared to Mary Magdalene outside the tomb that morning. The disciples were gathered in a house in Jerusalem, presumably the same one in which they had shared the last supper, although the passage from John (chapter 20 verse 19) tells us that the doors of the house were now locked for fear of the Jews:
[ Ed. note – Israel’s supporters and its legions of hasbara apparatchiks are quite fond of telling us how wonderfully Christians are treated in the Jewish state. But an article published today in the Israeli newspaper Haaretz gives us a slightly different perspective. Palestinian Christians in Gaza are required to obtain permits to travel to Jerusalem for Easter observances, and according to the Haaretz report, Israeli authorities are refusing to issue permits to Christians aged 55 and under.
By Charles E. Carlson
An organized structure exists that can bring wars to an end. It is somewhere within the long forgotten, slumbering Mainline and Catholic churches. It is you whom we are speaking to. You possess the organization, money needed, and the purpose. Some of your denominations already have anti-war movements. What you may lack is an understanding of Neo-Christian Zionism, and the will to face it. Simply stated, your leaders may not see the need to challenge World Zionism, and they want peace within your halls. But is there a church that does not recognize Jesus’ Beatitude, “Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called the children of God.”
I was kind of shocked to learn today of the death of the incredibly talented Irish singer Dolores O’Riordan at the age of just 46.
Several days ago I posted a video of an interview with Patriarch Kirill of the Russian Orthodox Church conducted over Russian TV. The interview aired live on January 7–Russian Orthodox Christmas Day. What I posted was only a four and a half minute segment that had been translated into English–this of an interview which ran on for more than half and hour–but in that segment Kirill expressed the view that “evil is not viable,” and that “systems where the evil is dominant cannot survive.”
The feature image that Russia Today selected when it uploaded this video is quite cheesy, but the comments by Russian Patriarch Kirill are actually quite powerful and relevant.