OCA: Reflections in Christ
Pastoral reflections on Orthodox Christianity
Remarks at the Conclusion of the Liturgy of Saint Basil with the Confection ...
2 May 2024 at 10:52am
by Metropolitan Tikhon

Monastery of Saint Tikhon of Zadonsk
May 2, 2024

As we conclude the liturgy, I would like to address with my greeting and my gratitude all those hierarchs and other clergy who have traveled here as visitors in order to participate in the consecration of the holy chrism.

Your Eminences, Your Graces, Very Reverend and Reverend Fathers,

During the season of the Fast, we have heard the Psalms of Ascent often in Church, including the well-known verses: “How good and pleasant it is for brothers to dwell together in unity. It is like oil upon the head, running down on the beard, on the beard of Aaron, to the collar of his robes.”

Together we have manifested that brotherly unity through concelebration and, indeed, through the consecration of chrism, the most sacred high priestly oil, the sealing of the Spirit’s gifts.

Chrism is a sign of the fullness of the unity of Christ that abides among and within the Churches through the presence of the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Unity whose grac...

Homily on the Sunday of Saint Mary of Egypt
21 Apr 2024 at 10:48am
by Metropolitan Tikhon

Saint Vladimir Seminary
April 21, 2024

In the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Today, the Fifth Sunday of Lent, is the final Sunday of the fast. We will soon put the forty days behind us; this coming Friday, the last day of Lent proper, we will sing, “Having completed the forty days that bring profit to our soul…” We will still be fasting during Holy Week, but the Great Fast will be over.

In keeping with this, today’s Gospel points us forward, past Great Lent and toward the coming Passion Week. On the way to Jerusalem the Lord tells us, his disciples, everything that will happen to him during Holy Week:

Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be betrayed to the chief priests and to the scribes; and they will condemn Him to death and deliver Him to the Gentiles; and they will mock Him, and scourge Him, and spit on Him, and kill Him. And the third day He will rise again.

There are no secrets as to how this week will end. There...

Homily on Akathist Saturday
20 Apr 2024 at 10:39am
by Metropolitan Tikhon

Saint Tikhon’s Monastery
April 20, 2024

In the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Today Saint Paul offers us a sobering reminder: “It is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment.”

If we have engaged in the Lenten struggle with even a modicum of authentic effort, then we know, to some small degree, just how sinful we are, just how deserving we are of judgment and condemnation. It is when we struggle to restrain our appetites that we see how monstrous and uncontrolled those appetites are. When we strive to turn away from sin, that is when we can feel the grip it has on us.

However, this Saturday festival also reminds us of the wealth of God’s mercy, the unfailing riches of his compassion.

At the time of our baptism, or perhaps when our baptism was fulfilled and sealed by the sacrament of chrismation, we received the grace of all that is needed for our salvation. Saint Paul speaks today of Christ’s unique sacrifice, that he “was offer...