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Reaching Out

“…our own sometimes shaky self-esteem, neediness, and failure to believe that we are really unique in the eyes of God often prevent us from loving and nurturing the presence of God in ourselves. This, in turn, makes it difficult to reach out to others.” (Robert J. Wicks)

“Knowledge of Christ, constantly supported and nurtured by the grace of God, grows quietly but steadily and becomes a unique and precious characteristic of an authentic Christian. As he/she grows and matures, he/she reaches a new stage. This is a stage where the experience of knowledge and grace of Christ needs to be expressed or articulated in various forms. Knowledge nurtured by grace is transformed into an energy that takes shape in one’s personal life and begins pouring out, radiating, flowing and affecting the people with whom Christian comes into contact. From the phase of growing in grace and knowledge, we pass into the phase of “going,” i.e. an explosive or subtle spreading of the experience of knowing Christ. An experience of grace and knowledge of that kind cannot be contained within the confines of the individual. It reaches out…Our primary task is to cleanse our own and our children’s hearts, minds, and passions, to offer truth to our families and friends, and to live Christ’s holy truth so as to reveal its radiant beauty and life-giving power.” (Archbishop Demetrios, Dynamis 7/1/2022)

“The Church is a lifesaving station that should reach out to all people everywhere. Unfortunately, many Christians forget this universal vision of God, and limit our …caring only for a particular people. We sometimes make those who are different than ourselves feel unwelcome, and even unloved. Such parochialism has plagued our Church for too long, and we must see this narrow worldview as contrary to the essence of the Church and to the mind of Christ. Jesus reached out to all people in love, and welcomed even the worst of sinners, foreigners, or heretics. He saw everyone as children of our heavenly Father, and thus, our brothers and sisters…This unconditional, universal love we receive becomes the motivating factor behind our desire to share Christ’s light with others. We understand that God blesses us with His love, so that we can then reflect His love onto others.” (Fr. Luke A. Veronis)

“Comparing our own age to those of previous ones… reveals what is perhaps the defining characteristic of our society—its coldness.…the coldness has a way of working into our bones and chilling our hearts. It is hard to love God and sing His praise each day when everything around us regards such behavior as madness or fanaticism. It is hard to love our neighbor when he remains unknown and when bridging the gap is considered faintly dangerous. How then to warm our hearts in this cold age? In the Church. There, at the Divine Liturgy of the Church and in her other services, a fire is blazing, the fire of the divine love of God which burns in His heart for all His children. It is around that hidden brazier that we must huddle, and warm our hands. Only then can our touch not be chilly when we reach out to others. It will still be as cold as ever when we leave the Liturgy and live another six days in this frigid and dying world. That is all the more reason to return to the fire as often as we can.” (Fr. Lawrence Farley)

“For the true Christian, happiness is more than self-achievement, even when that goal is to follow Jesus Christ to His Father’s kingdom, because in doing the will of our Lord, we are commanded to follow His example in serving the needs of others. An ancient axiom, “One Christian is no Christian,” is important to keep in mind. The moral dimension of our faith is to find our happiness in providing for the welfare of all God’s children. Not only must we reach out and help others, that ministry has to appeal to us in a way that enhances our lives and liberates us from self-awareness. Self-centeredness is not an option…” (Fr. Vladimir Berzonsky)


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