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Encountering Christ in the Scriptures and the Eucharist

4/18/2018
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On the Sunday of St Thomas, we hear of the encounter of the Apostle with the risen Christ. Fr Thomas teaches us that we too must make every effort to encounter the resurrected Christ both in the Holy Scriptures and in the Eucharist.

Duration:00:19:02

The Centrality of the Gospel

3/26/2018
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On the great feast of the Annunciation of the Mother of God, Fr Thomas reminds us that the message given by the Archangel Gabriel to the Virgin Mary is the very essence of the gospel message. This same message about the person of Jesus Christ also requires a response from us.

Duration:00:20:43

Don’t Be Afraid of Difficult Answers

3/20/2018
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On the fourth Sunday of Lent, the Church presents the Gospel reading of the healing of the demon possessed boy, and we also commemorate St John of "The Ladder." Fr Thomas teaches us that, if we want to spiritually grow, we have to be able to accept God's difficult answers to our ultimate questions.

Duration:00:16:50

How to Take Up the Cross

3/12/2018
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On the Sunday of the Cross in Great Lent, Fr Thomas teaches us that the power of God is found in the righteous actions required of us when we take up our own cross to follow Christ.

Duration:00:15:30

The Ideal of Orthodoxy

3/10/2018
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Fr Thomas shares a powerful message, correcting those who make themselves the measure of faith, and encouraging all of us to remember that Orthodox Christianity is the ideal we are striving for.

Duration:00:20:43

Why is Great Lent So Intense?

3/1/2018
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Fr Thomas gives a compelling case for the intense spiritual and physical efforts involved in observing Great Lent, beginning with the end in mind: the true significance of the Resurrection of Christ.

Duration:00:18:40

The Eucharist as Judgment

2/13/2018
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As the Church prepares us for the Great Lenten season by hearing the parable of the Last Judgment in Matthew 25, Fr Thomas reminds us that our preparation for that Great Day begins every time we prepare ourselves for the Eucharist. It is a fire that consumes the unworthy.

Duration:00:17:59

God in Trinity

2/5/2018
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On the feast of Theophany, the baptism of Christ, Fr Thomas teaches on the Orthodox understanding of the Holy Trinity.

Duration:00:15:20

Developing Tenacious Faith

1/20/2018
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At the approach of the new year, the Church presents the example of Joseph and Mary taking the young child, Jesus, to Egypt, to protect Him and keep the promise they made to God. Fr Thomas encourages us also, to imitate their tenacious faith in keeping the promises of our baptism, no matter what challenge we face.

Duration:00:14:51

Why Did the Word of God Become a Man?

1/9/2018
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On Christmas Eve, Fr Thomas reminds us that Christ came as a human to restore the image of God in us and show us how become what we were always meant to be.

Duration:00:15:46

The Invitation to Union with God

12/22/2017
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The Parable of the Great Banquet is read to prepare us to celebrate the Nativity of Christ. Fr Thomas weaves the epistle and gospel for the Sunday to inspire and direct us toward closer communion with God Himself by accepting the invitation that God gives to us week after week.

Duration:00:14:05

The Thankful Samaritan

12/21/2017
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Like the Good Samaritan, the scriptures give us yet another story about an exemplary Samaritan, among other so-called believers who failed to live up to their calling. Jesus heals ten lepers, but only the Samaritan returns to give thanks. Fr Thomas reminds us that we are continually being healed, and when we fail to give glory and thanks to the One who heals us, He says, "Where are you?"

Duration:00:17:55

Justification

11/27/2017
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When an Orthodox Christian is baptized, the priest proclaims, "you are justified!" But what does it mean to be righteous before God? Fr Thomas cites the readings of the Sunday, Ephesians 2 ("For by grace you have been saved through faith...") and the parable of the Good Samaritan, to outline the Orthodox understanding of our salvation in Christ.

Duration:00:23:01

Thanksgiving Thursday and Black Friday

11/22/2017
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The most endearing secular holiday in the American calendar is Thanksgiving Day. It was set aside by President Abraham Lincoln in 1863 "as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father." Later, the modern culture invented Black Friday, driving consumers to the stores in a buying frenzy. Fr Thomas reminds us that "covetousness is idolatry" (Col 3:5), that everything we have belongs to God, and should be used for His glory.

Duration:00:25:03

Truth Doesn’t Bow to Feelings

10/26/2017
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St Paul's letter to the Galatians opens with an impassioned plea to those who once embraced the truth of the Gospel, to return to it. In our own day, numerous Christians are succumbing to the spirit of the age and compromising fundamental truths. Fr Thomas makes his own fervent plea not to accept any other gospel but that which is given to us by the Apostles and their successors. As a listener to the podcast wrote, "truth doesn't bow to feelings."

Duration:00:19:07

Paying Attention to the Word of God

10/20/2017
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The Parable of the Sower, also known as the Parable of the Soils, teaches us important lessons about how different people receive the Word of God. Fr Thomas reminds us that the ultimate lesson of this famous parable is, "Let us attend! Pay attention!"

Duration:00:16:08

When Death Meets Life

10/12/2017
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The raising of the Widow of Nain's Son is a dramatic scene where the Power of Life confronts the reality of death. Fr Thomas reminds us that we experience this encounter every time we participate in the Divine Liturgy, entering into the presence of the One Who has victory over Hades and death. (Our apologies for the poor audio quality of this recording.)

Duration:00:22:42

How Can I Love My Enemy?

10/3/2017
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One of the most challenging commands of the teachings of Christ is to love our enemies. Fr Thomas explains what it looks like and why it's so important.

Duration:00:15:13

The Church’s Teaching Isn’t Up for a Vote

9/5/2017
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The Parable of the Wicked Vinedressers comes at an important point in the life of Christ, only days before his crucifixion. Jesus reveals the Scribes and Pharisees to be those who rejected the message of the prophets, and now they're going to kill God's Son. Fr Thomas reminds us that, in our own day, those who reject the message and the messengers by choosing the world's lies about God and humanity over the truth we receive in the Church commit the same grave error. (Matthew 21:33-44)

Duration:00:21:45

Developing an Interior Life

7/27/2017
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Fr Thomas uses the stories of two different healings by Jesus (Mt 9:27-35) to demonstrate the importance of developing an interior life. After the sermon (at 20:00) Fr Thomas talks with three nuns from the Monastery of the Holy Transfiguration in Ellwood City, PA, about cultivating the interior life and the challenges and blessings of monasticism.

Duration:00:49:34

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