CWN - Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and Russian President Vladimir Putin visited Mount Athos, the Greek peninsula that is home to 20 Eastern Orthodox monasteries, to celebrate the 1000th anniversary of the Russian presence there.

Speaking at St. Panteleimon Monastery, Putin said on May 28 that “in the Orthodox tradition, it [Athos] is believed to be the earthly domain of the Most Holy Mother of God, so everyone who steps on this sacred, much prayed on soil doubtless experiences special feelings.”

“The role played by Mount Athos is crucial at a time when Orthodoxy is growing stronger in Russia and other countries where it is confessed,” Putin added. “Orthodoxy is gaining ground, helping a great number of people, including Russians, to find inner support.”

The previous day, Patriarch Kirill preached:

Every time I set foot on the land of Athos I have a special feeling that this is a land in which ascetic work has been done for many centuries by people who left the world to come here, to a lonely place, and devoted their life to prayer, contemplation, and labor … If a monk no longer has sincere prayer of the heart, nothing is left in his life, for prayer is its core. It is because all monks of Mount Athos have zealous prayer, combining it with fasting and solitude, that those who come here feel that this place is a spring of the divine grace.


Teachings of Christ

“Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I have not come to call the righteous but sinners to repentance.” (Luke 5:31-32 ESV)

Entrance of the Mother of God into the Temple

Today is the prelude of the goodwill of God * and the heralding of the salvation of mankind; * the Virgin appears clearly in the temple of God * and foretells Christ to all. * Let us also with a mighty voice cry out to her: * “Rejoice, O Fulfillment of the Creator’s divine plan.” (Troparion - Tone 4)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen.

The most pure Temple of the Savior, * the most precious Bridal-Chamber and Virgin, the sacred Treasury of the glory of God, * is brought today into the house of the Lord, * bringing with her the grace that is in the Divine Spirit. * The angels of God praise her in song: * “She is the heavenly tabernacle.” (Kontakion - Tone 4)

(November 21st)

Random Proverb

"Blessed is the one who finds wisdom, and the one who gets understanding, for the gain from her is better than gain from silver and her profit better than gold." (Proverbs 3:13,14 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

Do we forgive our neighbors their trespasses? God also forgives us in His mercy. Do we refuse to forgive? God, too, will refuse to forgive us. As we treat our neighbors, so also does God treat us. The forgiveness, then, of your sins or unforgiveness, and hence also your salvation or destruction, depend on you yourself, man. For without forgiveness of sins there is no salvation. You can see for yourself how terrible it is.

St. Tikhon of Zadonsk, Journey to Heaven