My Encounter with Saint Paisios the Athonite in 1986

Posted by on Jan 16, 2015 in Blog
My Encounter with Saint Paisios the Athonite in 1986

Written by Father Panayiotis Papageorgiou I consider it a great blessing that I was able to be in the presence of this humble giant of our Faith. This was a defining moment for me as I was searching for ways to anchor my faith in Christ. Elder Paisios stood as a beacon, as a light […]

Meteora — Where the Earth meets the Heavens!

Posted by on Sep 27, 2014 in Blog, Feature Article
Meteora — Where the Earth meets the Heavens!

By Father Panayiotis Papageorgiou, Ph.D. Originally printed Aug. 7, 2011. It was astonishing as we turned the corner to find ourselves at the feet of these huge boulders — the Meteora (suspended rocks) — rising up from the Thessalian plains. Even more astonishing was the view of red-roofed buildings sitting on top of the boulders. These […]

Saint Silouan and Inner Stillness

Posted by on Sep 24, 2014 in Blog
Saint Silouan and Inner Stillness

Saint Silouan the Athonite was born Simeon Ivanovich Antonov in 1866 to Russian Orthodox parents who came from the village of Sovsk. When he was twenty-seven, he left Russia for Mount Athos and became a monk at the Monastery of St. Panteleimon where he was given the name Silouan. Silouan was an enthusiastic ascetic, someone […]

Abba Moses the Black of Scete

Posted by on Aug 28, 2014 in Blog
Abba Moses the Black of Scete

“Why do you increase your bonds? Take hold of your life before your light grows dark and you seek help and do not find it. This life has been given to you for repentance; do not waste it in vain pursuits.” — St. Isaac the Syrian In mid-forth century Alexandria, Egypt, there lived a powerhouse […]

The Cave of the Revelation on the Island of Patmos

Posted by on Aug 23, 2014 in Blog
The Cave of the Revelation on the Island of Patmos

By Father Panayiotis Papageorgiou, Ph.D. Originally printed Oct. 9, 2011. It was an adventure to get to the island of Patmos in Greece, but the beauty of the place made me quickly forget the travail. As we disembarked from the Flying Dolphin, the super-fast boat that ferried us across the Dodecanese islands, I could not get […]

A Prayer from Elder Joseph the Hesychast

Posted by on Aug 15, 2014 in Blog
A Prayer from Elder Joseph the Hesychast

In commemoration of Elder Joseph the Hesychast, who reposed fifty-five years ago today on the Feast of the Dormition of his most beloved Theotokos, we present a prayer that the elder would recite before beginning his daily prayers: “Lord Jesus Christ, sweetest Father, God and Lord of mercy, and Creator of the entire universe: Look upon my humility […]

Lessons from Abba Dorotheos of Gaza

Posted by on Aug 12, 2014 in Blog
Lessons from Abba Dorotheos of Gaza

Between the fourth and seventh centuries, the desert of Palestine became home to a large number of monks and monasteries. From these, several great elders emerged, including St. Barsanuphius (nicknamed ‘the Great Old Man’) and St. John the Prophet (nicknamed ‘the Other Old Man’) in the sixth century. These two elders kept up an ongoing […]

St. Dionysius the Rhetorician and His Disciple, St. Mitrophanes

Posted by on Jul 9, 2014 in Blog
St. Dionysius the Rhetorician and His Disciple, St. Mitrophanes

On the southernmost tip of the Athonite peninsula lies a region known as ‘the desert’.  For centuries, hermits and hesychasts have come to this rough terrain in search of greater solitude and stillness.  Graham Speake, in his book Mount Athos: Renewal in Paradise (2002), offers a good description of this remote area: “The landscape is incredibly desolate here […]

Abba Sisoes the Great

Posted by on Jul 6, 2014 in Blog
Abba Sisoes the Great

Today we commemorate the venerable Sisoes the Great (+429), a hermit who labored in the heat of the Egyptian desert for over sixty years. He first struggled at Sketis before seeking further solitude across the Nile. He settled in the cave of the recently departed St. Anthony the Great and said, “Thus in the cave […]

The Monks of the Arizona Desert

Posted by on Feb 14, 2014 in Feature Article
The Monks of the Arizona Desert

By Father Panayiotis Papageorgiou, Ph.D. They surrender their lives to the “Geronta” or “Elder” or “Starets” trusting him to lead them to perfection and sanctification-”theosis”.  They always gaze toward the Cross of Christ seeking the strength and consolation of the Crucified and Risen Lord.  Through Prayer, Obedience and Humility they become “like Christ”. They crucify their […]

Four Desert Fathers

Posted by on Oct 4, 2013 in Blog
Four Desert Fathers

Over the past seven days we’ve commemorated several important Desert Fathers. The first three lived in the desert and wilderness of Palestine and the fourth lived in the ‘utter desert’ of Egypt where there was ‘a huge silence and great quiet.’¹

charitonSaint Chariton the Confessor fearlessly confessed Christ during Aurelian’s persecution and was tortured then thrown into prison. He was later released and vowed to live a life of ascesis and renunciation. On his way to Jerusalem thieves abducted Chariton and …

Saint Silouan the Athonite

Posted by on Sep 24, 2013 in Blog
Saint Silouan the Athonite

Today we commemorate Saint Silouan the Athonite. Silouan was born in 1866 in the Tambov region of Russia to pious parents. He thought of God, prayed, and felt drawn to the monastic life at a young age but his father advised him to serve in the military first. After a wild period in his youth, he dreamt of a