With Apologies to my Readers


There really are no shortcuts – even in something as trivial as a blog. My last two posts have been pulled – one a small quote from Fr. Sophrony, added last night before bedtime (because you have to add something), the other written today when I was not entirely certain of what I wanted to write. But both of those are part of the stuff of life. Comments were on target and helpful to me.

I want Glory to God for All Things to be worthy of your time when you visit, which may not mean that I’ll have something fresh every day. No one can maintain that pace for too long. But also I trust that I will have taken time to choose well and with prayer what might be of use. Of course, God alone knows the answer to these things. I write in faith.

I am traveling in South Carolina today (Monday) and tomorrow and leave Wednesday (by air) for a short meeting in Dallas, TX, returning on Thursday evening. All of which means a slightly hectic travel schedule – but not necessarily exhausting. That depends on what I do with my time.

Fortunately, I have had time today to walk for an hour or more and to make a small trip with family out to the grave of my father-in-law (may his memory be eternal). I’ve also been back in my room long enough to hear to the terrible tragedy in Blacksburg, Virgina where so many students have been shot (may their memory be eternal) in yet another of these isolated rampages that our nation has become too accustomed to seeing.

Tomorrow is known as the “Day of Rejoicing” when in Russian tradition, panakhidas (memorial prayers) are again offered for the departed after Bright Week and when families visit the graves of their loved ones. Perhaps most striking about such days is that they presume a sort of stability in our lives (that we live near the graves of those we love) which is often missing in our culture. I’ve written on that subject before and it will doubtless continue to surface because it is simply one of the contradictions of the modern world. We are removed from those we love by more than death. We endure exile (of a sort) as well.

May God keep the families who lost so much today and give us all an increased love for those around us. Such precious lives in such a fragile world.

About Fr. Stephen Freeman

Fr. Stephen is a priest of the Orthodox Church in America, Pastor Emeritus of St. Anne Orthodox Church in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. He is also author of Everywhere Present and the Glory to God podcast series.





6 responses to “With Apologies to my Readers”

  1. Kyra Avatar

    Father, bless you and yours on your trip. And I hope that all those like me who cannot visit the graves of those they love will be able to spend some time in prayer for those they love…and miss.

    And to those families who have lost so much so quickly..in that blink of an eye..I can only hope for them peace that goes beyond their understanding.

    And Father…I do not think anyone will hold against you your editing your own blog. It is what they call literary liscense I believe 😉

  2. Fatherstephen Avatar

    Thanks Kyra,

    Sometimes the old delete button is a good friend.

  3. Alice C. Linsley Avatar
    Alice C. Linsley

    God grant you many days, Fr. Stephen! It is your blog, in the service of Christ God. HE will guide you.

  4. Clint Avatar

    Fr. Stephen,
    Your blog is one that I frequent every single day. My wife does the same. I appreciate your posts and the thought you put into them. They are truly making a difference in our walk with God.

    Thank you.

  5. Margaret Avatar

    Fr. Stephen,
    Your blog has been a blessing on my life because of where it has led me to focus: On the gospel, on the church fathers…on the brevity of life here in this world. Thank you!
    I pray that God has mercy on you and guides you in all service of Him!
    Thank you for the encouragement to pray and to think of those around us, near and far; living here and now, or departed.

  6. Lady MacBeth Avatar

    Father bless! FYI, if you or your readers are interested Christopher at his Orrologion blog has posted a lecture given by Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev in 2002 on “Christ, the Conqueror of Hell–The Descent of Christ into Hades in Eastern and Western Theological Traditions.” This lecture is a great addition to the lively debate unfolding within the pages of “First Things” magazine regarding the Catholic understanding of this mysterious,but important, cosmic event.

    BTW, I agree with all the above comments.

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