A Serbian Orthodox Church cleric defended postdoctoral project at the School of Theology in Thessaloniki

Deacon Dr. Aleksandar Prascevic defended his postdoctoral project on “The Contribution of the Serbian Orthodox Church to the Dialogue with Muslims (1920-2020)” at the School of Theology of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, under scientific supervision of professor Dr. Angeliki Ziaka.

The event took place on January 14, 2021.  This postdoctoral thesis in Greece is a continuation of Prascevic’s committed study of the historical development of relations between Orthodox Christians and Muslims in the Balkans, which he began with a doctorate in Russia, then continued with another doctorate in Canada, a postdoctoral project in Switzerland and another postdoctoral project in Russia.   

Protopresbyter-staurophor Velibor Dzomic: Election of the Patriarch and epidemics - church-legal analysis

The question * of the date of the election session of the Holy Assembly of Bishops at which the 46th Serbian Patriarch should be elected is primarily a church issue and primarily concerns the bishops, clergy, monastics and the faithful of the Serbian Orthodox Church.

Having in mind the importance of the Saint Sava throne, as well as the dignity and role of the Serbian Patriarch on a wider level, the issue of electing the Serbian Patriarch, with which the issue of the date of the election session of the Holy Synod of Bishops is connected, has a wider, social significance, and exceeds the framework of Serbia.

Why Study the Book of Revelation?

Photo: oranta.moscowThe Revelation of St. John the Theologian. Talk 1

We are beginning a study of the book of Revelation by St. John the Theologian. Perhaps it would be useful to ask ourselves: Why should we read and analyze this book?

To answer this question, we have to understand why God gave such a book to the Church.

Christianity is a religion of acute eschatological expectation. The Church always remembers that the world is moving towards its end and the subsequent transformation. Only God knows the times and the seasons (cf. Acts 1:7), but Scripture warns that this time is near. Little children, it is the last time (1 John 2:18), St. John the Theologian wrote already in the first century. Therefore, since the very beginning of its existence, the Church has been “look[ing] for the Resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come.”

Fulfillment of the Creator’s Dispensation

Commentary on the Troparion of the Feast of the Entrance of the Most Holy Theotokos Into the Temple

On December 4, the Church commemorates the Entrance of the Most Holy Theotokos Into the Temple—an event connected with the vow of her parents, Sts. Joachim and Anna. They led their three-year-old daughter Mary to the Jerusalem Temple, where she was led by the High Priest Zacharias into the Holy of Holies and was brought up until the age of twelve. On this Great Feast, we offer our readers a theological-philological commentary on the troparion for the day.    

The peculiarity of this feast is that it is based on the apocrypha—the Protoevangelium of James. This tradition has sufficient authority, since it was used by the holy fathers:

What did the Previous Metropolitan of Kiev Vladimir Say About the Autocephaly of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church?

Today, in the Ukrainian media sphere, especially after the introduction of Poroshenko's “tomos” into the religious life of Ukraine, and the promulgation of a new schism by the Patriarch of Constantinople Bartholomew, which endangers the unity of not only the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, but the entire world Orthodoxy, one can hear that the so-called “autocephaly of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church,” after the collapse of the USSR, was the longed-for dream of the majority of the country's Orthodox believers, headed by their Primate, His Beatitude, Metropolitan Vladimir (Sabodan; reposed 07/05/2014), who allegedly for the twenty-two years of his primateship in Ukraine, advocated for the “complete and final separation” (of the UOC) from the Russian Orthodox Church, and the acquisition of autocephaly for the UOC with the status of a Local Church. But is that really the case? This issue was discussed in the conference hall of Kiev Theological Academy at a round table dedicated to the memory of His Beatitude Metropolitan Vladimir, on the day of his 85th birthday—November 23 of this year.    

Representatives of the older generation of the Kievan clergy, who knew Metropolitan Vladimir when he was the Rector of Moscow's theological schools, as well as hierarchs of the UOC, and representatives of state, cultural and educational organizations, and the Orthodox community were invited to the commemorative event. The words of each participant in the meeting were filled with great love for the reposed hierarch, as they expressed memories of his hierarchical wisdom, simplicity, accessibility, and sympathy for each person, be they a student, peasant or academic, and concerning the theological, literary and poetic heritage of Metropolitan Vladimir.

The Entry of the Most Holy Mother of God into the Temple

According to Holy Tradition, the Entry of the Most Holy Theotokos into the Temple took place in the following manner. The parents of the Virgin Mary, Saints Joachim and Anna, praying for an end to their childlessness, vowed that if a child were born to them, they would dedicate it to the service of God.

When the Most Holy Virgin reached the age of three, the holy parents decided to fulfill their vow. They gathered together their relatives and acquaintances and dressed the All-Pure Virgin in Her finest clothes. Singing sacred songs and with lighted candles in their hands, virgins escorted Her to the Temple (Ps. 44/45:14-15). There the High Priest and several priests met the handmaiden of God. In the Temple, fifteen high steps led to the sanctuary, which only the priests and High Priest could enter. (Because they recited a Psalm on each step, Psalms 119/120-133/134 are called “Psalms of Ascent.”)