Sermons from St. Mary Church
April 09, 2014 - by Fr. Antony Hughes
It is a Sunday of relation, of discovery, of disclosure, of transformation. Taken metaphorically, its meaning is sheer enlightenment. If we get caught up in the details of the literal story, we lose the meaning of her story. Literalism is a dead end when speaking of scripture or the spiritual life. Taken as a metaphor, then, her story has great meaning; it is relevant; it is a metaphor for the spiritual life as lived by all who decide to walk that path.
March 30, 2014 - by Marianna Sayeg
These 15 Old Testament readings come right before the epistle and gospel in that service, so we have to ask ourselves: what is so important about these specific passages that out of the entire Bible, they were chosen to be read right before Christ’s resurrection is announced? Each individual passage has something to teach us, but more importantly, as a collection they highlight several themes that prepare us for the joyous news we are about to hear.
The Theme of Sacrifice, Offering, Picking up the Cross, and Following Jesus in the 15 OT Readings of Holy Saturday
March 23, 2014 - by Ioana Chirieac
How does sacrifice, letting go and picking up my cross all look like in today’s world? I do believe that across centuries there has been a gradual increase in the level of consciousness and awareness not only at a personal level, but also at a societal level.
March 16, 2014 - by Andrea Popa
This morning, we will explore the Word of The Lord and the mission of the unnamed servant. We’ll be focusing on four readings – two from Holy Saturday as well as today’s Epistle and Gospel passages.
March 09, 2014 - by Melissa Nassiff
In today's Gospel, you will recall that after Jesus invited Philip to follow him, Philip went to find his friend Nathaniel, and told him excitedly, We have found him of whom Moses in the law and also the prophets wrote! Well, in these fifteen readings we will be looking at some of what Moses and the prophets wrote. These readings cover pretty much the whole history of our salvation
February 02, 2014 - by Fr. Antony Hughes
This is the third Winter Feast of Light. The Nativity of Christ, Theophany and the Presentation of the Lord are all about the revelation of God, the one true Light, to the world. So, let me begin with a quote from Dr. Jung that, I think is most apropos.
January 26, 2014 - by Fr. Antony Hughes
St. John of Alexandria was asked how he presents the faith and he replied, I present it as compassion unlimited. God become man assuming and deifying all of humanity in the process. That is compassion unlimited. He reawakened humanity to the truth that God is always near and the kingdom is and always has been at hand, right before our very eyes, closed or not.
December 25, 2013 - by Fr. Antony Hughes
Professor Jaroslav Pelikan once said "the problem with the church is that we have lost a sense of the cosmic Christ." In the introduction to a book on Joseph Campbell, the author said, "society is not falling apart because we don't have enough laws and because we aren't enforcing them well. It is because we have no mysticism in our religion."
December 24, 2013 - by St. Gregory of Nazianzus
Again, the darkness is past; again Light is made; again Egypt is punished with darkness; again Israel is enlightened by a pillar. The people who sat in the darkness of ignorance, let them see the great Light full of knowledge.
December 08, 2013 - by Fr. Antony Hughes
I am always moved when I hear of or see people who act with the courage and compassion Jesus displays in today’s Gospel reading. Jesus breaks a religious law or two to heal a old, sick woman, on the Sabbath, in the synagogue. The ruler of the place gets angry. What else is new? Jesus had to know what he was doing. Isaac Asimov wrote, "Don’t ever let your sense of morals keep you from doing what’s right." Sometimes donkeys and even sci-fi writers have been known to prophesy. Jesus never let the law stand in the way of love.
December 01, 2013 - by Fr. Antony Hughes
The Gospel reading today reminds me of George Bernard Shaw’s play Man and Superman. In one scene a faithful old Christian lady, is shocked to hear that 'the landscape through which she is happily strolling is not Heaven but Hell.' She becomes very angry. 'I tell you,' she insists, 'I know I am not in Hell because I feel no pain.' She is then told that if she wants to she is free to wander over the hill and enter into Heaven. Then the warning comes that those who are happy in hell found Heaven to be intolerable.
November 24, 2013 -
Jesus is the door and he's opening the door today for the rich man. He is the light, and he's shining light on the darkness. He is the truth, and he's telling him the truth and he wants to be born in his life. He wants to wake him up. The Lord's teaching through parables and metaphors is his how he does it. It is how he awakens the true self in us
November 03, 2013 - by Fr. Antony Hughes
Throughout my years as a priest, counselor, confessor, etc. there has been a constant theme. But whatever words you use to describe it the meaning is the same. I like theological terms, but most people don’t speak the language, so we have to communicate the message in words people can understand. All in all, it really boils down to one simple thing: people want to love and to be loved.
October 20, 2013 - by Fr. Antony Hughes
I do not like to talk about demons much. They are so into themselves that I don’t want to cooperate in their narcissism. Also, I accept completely the Orthodox understanding that sin, death, and the devil (along with the demons) were defeated when Jesus died on the Cross and was resurrected, so It seems a little un-Orthodox to give demons as much credit as some people do.
October 13, 2013 - by Fr. Antony Hughes
Parables are essential. We learn best from stories. Metaphors inspire us to dig deeper, to explore, to step outside the box, to expand, to wonder, to think for ourselves. There's no other way to encounter Jesus on the deepest levels of consciousness unless we let go of the fear of looking ever more deeply into the mystery of life itself.
October 06, 2013 - by His Grace Bishop JOHN
Imagine the death of a young man who is the only son of an old widow if indeed you were a Sadduccee, imagining that the only part of you that lives after you go to the grave is the part of you that lives in your children. This old widow was not only burying her only son, which of course is a difficult enough thing to do, but she was burying herself, and she was burying her husband, and she was burying all of the ancestors of both her and her husband.
October 05, 2013 - by Fr. Antony Hughes
I thank God for sending us to St. Mary’s. Without Him, well, we are nothing. The miracle of our assignment here many of you know, and I will not repeat the story, but it never ceases to inspire and humble me that God sent us here.
September 29, 2013 - by Fr. Antony Hughes
Again we are reminded that God is merciful and compassionate and that we are to follow his example, but this is more than mere imitation. The imitation of God is one thing, but we are called to do more than that; we are called to become divine, not just to be merciful, but to become Mercy.
September 15, 2013 - by Fr. Antony Hughes
Orthodoxy is not a spectator sport! Today is the Elevation of the Holy Cross. But why today? They think we celebrate the Feast because of St. Helen’s finding the cross. That’s really not true, though if she hadn’t found it, we couldn’t celebrate it, could we?
September 08, 2013 - by Fr. Antony Hughes
The story of the bronze serpent in the wilderness is an interesting one. The Israelites are grumbling about their time in the wilderness and the Lord gets royally annoyed, so he sends poisonous snakes into the encampment to bite them. They cry out to Moses for help.