Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of America
DOMSE Living the Orthodox Faith in Christ
Words From Sayedna Nicholas
The month of December is always a fast month as we prepare for the Nativity of Our Lord. Many of us need to take care of tax issues before the end of the year, purchase Christmas gifts, celebrate with family members and friends, shop for Christmas trees, and many other tasks, some of which are necessary and/or frivolous. It is needless to say that we must not forget the spirit of the season and the reason the Church has appointed it for us. We all know that it is the actual birth of our Lord, God, and Savior Jesus Christ. However, we might need a reminder occasionally, lest we be taken by the busyness of the season and by the end-of-the-year issues.
The December Spiritual Corner continues in presenting three additional virtues that complement the previous six offered in the last two months. They are:
Meekness is often confused with humility. However, it is a distinct virtue that is characterized by the lack of retaliation against a person while having the power to do so. If you recall, Jesus, having the power of God, never retaliated as He was mocked, flogged, or crucified. Rather, He said to His Father, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do. And they divided His garments and cast lots.” Meekness, though it is not a weakness, means never to return evil for evil.
Wisdom is the immediate insight into issues and the ability to give advice about the will of God in a person’s life based on confronted matters and questions asked. It is the ability to correlate God’s will and wisdom with the reality of a given person in order to relieve anxiety and give clear direction within the context of the Church, as St. Paul confirms, “…that now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church…” (Ephesians 3:10)
Gratitude is to be thankful for all gifts given by God and by fellow men, “for every good and perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from thee, the Father of Lights” (James 1:17). In addition, the Psalmist instructs us to have gratitude for our God, “Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good!” (Psalm 107:1) For through gratitude, graces bestowed upon us by God become a continual process.
The AMEN annual virtual Fall Retreat on November 20th was well attended as the morning discussion took place, led by Alex Radulescu, and the afternoon session that was led by Fr. Stephen De Young as he explained the essence of his new book. Please be on the lookout for the registration notice for the in-person Clergy annual Retreat, which will be held on January 26th and 27th, followed by the in-person Winter annual Retreat, which will be held on January 28th and 29th. Both retreats are to be held at St. Elias Church, Atlanta, GA. In addition, Winter Camp, AKA WAMP, is being planned to take place on February 18th through the 20th. Registration will start soon. God bless you all!