All my previous days have been spent in quietness, stillness and intense studying. I have been reflecting on my Romanian monasteries’ pilgrimage and preparing for the next one to Cephalonia and Ithaca for the Dormition Feast. I have also been corresponding with my English brothers and sisters in Christ, preparing for my return to the UK by the end of the summer.
Central in all my thoughts, studies, activities and endeavours was the Holy Spirit, Orthodoxy and Missionary work.
I started studying Archbishop Anastasios’ of Tirana, Durrës and All Albania life and works, and was inspired by his questioning of the establishment’s accepted apathy toward missions. Then, I turned to the Acts of the Apostles and marvelled at the workings of the Holy Spirit and the Apostles’ zeal and love for God and His Church! Next, I examined various missionaries’ blogs and websites, and I also watched a number of very inspiring videos: Michael Harper‘s talk on the Holy Spirit, part of THE WAY, the outreach programme of the Institute for Orthodox Christian Studies.
a two-part documentary, where renowned British actor David Suchet undertakes an epic journey spanning the Mediterranean. His inspiration is a charismatic individual whose own travels through this region, two thousand years ago, changed the world forever – Paul the Apostle:
Do you remember how all this got started? By a disturbing comment by a ‘cradle’ Orthodox that all ‘others’ are ‘foreigners’ and ‘strangers’. Now after a week I know that such an attitude cannot be farthest from the Truth. I understand I have so much more to learn yet but I am already convinced that
“Inertia in the field of mission means, in the last analysis, a negation of Orthodoxy, a backslide into the practical heresy of localism”;
“Mission was not the duty of only the first generation of Christians. It is the duty of Christians of all ages … It is an essential expression of the Orthodox ethos.”;
“Church without mission is a contradiction in terms…. If the Church is indifferent to the apostolic work with which she has been entrusted, she denies herself, contradicts herself and her essence, and is a traitor in the warfare in which she is engaged.”
May the Holy Spirit empower us to be faithful in fulfilling the commandment of Christ to “Go into all the world and make disciples of all Nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all [things that He has] commanded”, so that all people may be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth. “Thy Kingdom come on earth as it is in Heaven”!
May we witness to the truth, and by God’s grace and in the power of the Holy Spirit, to reveal Christ’s way of sanctification and eternal salvation to all.