Tag Archives: Teva Regule

Defending Human Dignity A Response to the Pre-Conciliar Document, “The Mission of the Orthodox Church in Today’s World”

by Fr. Robert M. AridaSusan Ashbrook Harvey, David Dunn, Maria McDowellTeva Regule, and Bryce E. Rich

The authors of ‘The Mission of the Orthodox Church in Today’s World’ are to be commended for framing our shared ecclesial mission as one of making present the eschatological hope of the new creation in which “race, gender, age, social, or any other condition” are no bar to shared eucharistic celebration. The document rightly reminds us that “the purpose of the incarnation … is the deification of the human person” which establishes the dignity of all persons, and demands its protection. As co-workers with God, the church and its members enter into “common service together with all people of good will,” seeking to establish peace, justice (3, 6), and social solidarity (6.4, 6.5, 6.6), gifts of the Holy Spirit which come from God (3.2) but “also depend on human synergy” (3.3). These gifts, and this work, is required for the flourishing of human dignity. Continue Reading…

Reflection on “The Importance of Fasting and Its Observance Today”

by Rev. Dr. Stelyios Muksuris, Rev. Dr. Alkiviadis Calivas, Rev. Dr. Nicholas Denysenko, John Klentos, Paul Meyendorff, Lewis Patsavos, Teva Regule, and Rev. Dr. Philip Zymaris.

In accordance with Orthodox Christian scriptural and patristic tradition, fasting finds its origins in the divine commandment given in paradise (Gen 2.16-17; St. Basil, On Fasting 1.3; PG 31.168A), where man is invited to honor his relationship with God by obedience. One sees God thereby as the benevolent Source of all goodness (Mt 4.4) and humanity as the beneficiary of His benevolence. While typically referenced within the context of partial or complete abstinence from food and drink, its interior principle focuses on a dynamic interface between harnessing instinctive behavior and living the precepts of the Gospel. In other words, fasting seeks to assist us in reprioritizing our allegiances from an addictive dependence upon worldly goods to an intimate relationship with God and neighbor.    Continue Reading…

Marriage, Family, and Scripture

by Bryce E. RichFr. Robert M. Arida, Susan Ashbrook Harvey, David Dunn, Maria McDowell, and Teva Regule 

The title of the working document “The Sacrament of Marriage and Its Impediments” appears to promise a meaningful teaching on the spousal relationship. Instead, much of the document is devoted to a particular, modern vision of family. Beginning with the central claim of §I.1 regarding the dangers posed by secularization and moral relativism to the institution of the family, over half the paragraphs of Section I address relationships deemed incongruous with the purported Orthodox model of family, mixed with claims about the welfare of civil society. While much can be said, the following essay offers a cursory examination of the scripture passages supporting this view, along with an exploration of biblical passages that belie this facile model. Continue Reading…

Pastoral Challenges for Marriage in Contemporary Orthodoxy

by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Denysenko, Rev. Dr. Alkiviadis Calivas, John Klentos, Paul Meyendorff, Rev. Dr. Stelyios Muksuris, Lewis Patsavos, Teva Regule, and Rev. Dr. Philip Zymaris

In preparation for the Great and Holy Council to be held on Crete in June, 2016, the Orthodox bishops have issued a preconciliar document on the sacrament of marriage. The document’s main thrust is to illuminate the core teaching on marriage and its sanctity from the Orthodox perspective. Marriage is a dominical institution reserved for a monogamous union of man and woman (1.1). The document refers to marriage as “the oldest institution of divine law” and Christ-centered, since it is “the image of the unity of Christ and the Church” (1.2). Lament over the decline of family life and a deep desire to protect families from external threats shape the remainder of the document’s positions (1.5). Continue Reading…