Protection of the Mother of God




Protection of the Mother of God

The Protection of the Mother of God is one of the most beloved feast days on the Orthodox calendar among the Slavic peoples, commemorated on October 1. The feast is celebrated additionally on October 28 in the Greek tradition. It is also known as the feast of the Virgin Mary’s Cerement.

In most Slavic languages the word “cerement” has a dual meaning of “veil” and “protection.” The Russian word Pokrov (Покров), like the Greek Skepi (Σκέπη), has a complex meaning. First of all, it refers to a cloak or shroud, but it also means protection or intercession. For this reason, the name of the feast is variously translated as the Veil of Our Lady, the Protecting Veil of the Theotokos, the Protection of the Theotokos, or the Intercession of the Theotokos.

The feast

The feast day celebrates the appearance of the Mother of God at Blachernae (Vlaherna) in the tenth century. At the end of St. Andrei (Andrew of Constantinople) Yurodivyi’s life, he, with his disciple St. Epiphanius, and a group of people, saw the Mother of God, St. John the Baptist, and several other saints and angels during a vigil in the Church of Blachernae, nearby the city gates. The Blachernae Palace church was where several of Continue reading “Protection of the Mother of God”

Ιερά Λείψανα & Άγια Αντικείμενα – Αρχιμ. Ιωάννης Κωστώφ


Ιερά Λείψανα & Άγια Αντικείμενα

Αρχιμ. Ιωάννης Κωστώφ

Στήν Ἁγ. Γραφή τονίζεται ἡ ἀξία τοῦ ἀνθρωπίνου σώματος, προανάκρουσμα τῶν ἱερῶν Λειψάνων: «Παρακαλῶ οὖν ὑμᾶς, ἀδελφοί, διά τῶν οἰκτιρμῶν τοῦ Θεοῦ, παραστῆσαι τά σώματα ὑμῶν θυσίαν ζῶσαν, ἁγίαν, εὐάρεστον τῷ Θεῷ, τήν λογικήν λατρείαν ὑμῶν»(Ρμ 12, 1).

«Οὐκ οἴδατε ὅτι τά σώματα ὑμῶν μέλη Χριστοῦ ἐστιν; Ἆρα οὖν τά μέλη τοῦ Χριστοῦ ποιήσω πόρνης μέλη; μή γένοιτο»(Α´ Κορ 6, 15).

«Ἤ οὐκ οἴδατε ὅτι τό σῶμα ὑμῶν ναός τοῦ ἐν ὑμῖν Ἁγίου Πνεύματός ἐστιν, οὗ ἔχετε ἀπό Θεοῦ, καί οὐκ ἐστέ ἑαυτῶν (: κι ὅτι δέν ἀνήκετε στόν ἑαυτό σας);»(Α´ Κορ 6, 19).

• Ἡ ἕνωσι μέ τό Χριστό καινοποιεῖ τά πάντα· τά σώματα γίνονται «εἰκόνα τοῦ ἐπουρανίου»(Α´ Κορ 15, 49)· μέλη Χριστοῦ καί ναός τοῦ Ἁγ. Πνεύματος (Α´ Κορ 6, 15, 19-20· βλ. καί: Α´ Θεσ 5, 23)· μεταμορφωνόμασθε «ἀπό δόξης εἰς δόξαν»(Β´ Κορ 3, 18)· γινόμασθε «καινή (: καινούργια) κτίσις· τά ἀρχαῖα παρῆλθεν, ἰδού γέγονε καινά τά πάντα»(Β´ Κορ 5, 17· βλ. καί: Γαλ 6, 15)· «καινός ἄνθρωπος»(Ἐφ 2, 15· 4, 24)· σέ καινούργιους οὐρανούς καί γῆ (Β´ Πέτρ 3, 13· Ἡσ 65, 17· 66, 22· Ἀπκ 21, 5).

• «Ἡ ἐπιγραφή πάνω σέ μία λειψανοθήκη μάρτυρος: “Ιn isto vaso sancto congregabuntur membra Christi” (Σ᾽ αὐτό τό ἅγιο δοχεῖο εἶναι μαζεμένα μέλη τοῦ Χριστοῦ) δίδει μία σωστή εἰκόνα ὅλου τοῦ ρεαλισμοῦ τῆς Βιβλικῆς ἀντιλήψεως γιά τό Σῶμα (Υves Congar, Εsquisses du Μystère de l᾽ Εglise, Ρaris 1953 σ. 115]»(ΠΕ, 193)

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Θαυματουργία ὑλικῶν ἀντικειμένων: Ἡ αἱμορροοῦσα θεραπεύθηκε ἀγγίζοντας τό Continue reading “Ιερά Λείψανα & Άγια Αντικείμενα – Αρχιμ. Ιωάννης Κωστώφ”

Which Came First: New Testament or the Church? – Fr. James Bernstein, WA, USA




Which Came First: New Testament or the Church?

by Fr. James Bernstein, WA, USA


Which Came First: New Testament or the Church?


A convert to Christianity from Judaism, Fr. James was a teenage chess champion whose dramatic conversion experience at the age of 16 led him to Christianity, and is also one of the founders of Jews For Jesus. His journey led him directly to the Orthodox Christian faith, and his journey is recounted in his book “Surprised By Christ,” the story of a man searching for the truth and unable to rest until he finds it. He is the priest at St. Paul Church in Brier, WA.


As a Jewish convert to Christ via evangelical Protestantism, I naturally wanted to know God better through the reading of the Scriptures. In fact, it had been through reading the Gospels in the “forbidden book” called the New Testament, at age sixteen, that I had come to believe in Jesus Christ as the Son of God and our promised Messiah. In my early years as a Christian, much of my religious education came from private Bible reading.

By the time I entered college, I had a pocket-sized version of the whole Bible that was my constant companion. I would commit favorite passages from the Scriptures to memory, and often quote them to myself in times of temptation-or to others as I sought to convince them of Christ. The Bible became for me-as it is to this day-the most important book in print. I can say from my heart with Saint Paul the Apostle,

“All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness” (2 Timothy 3:16).

That’s the good news!

The bad news is that often I would decide for myself what the Scriptures meant. For example, I became so enthusiastic about knowing Jesus as my close and personal friend that I thought my own awareness of Him was all I needed. So I would mark verses about Continue reading “Which Came First: New Testament or the Church? – Fr. James Bernstein, WA, USA”

Αγάπησε τον Ένα για να σε αγαπήσουν όλοι – Άγιος Αμφιλόχιος Μακρής της Πάτμου (+1970)


Αγάπησε τον Ένα για να σε αγαπήσουν όλοι

Άγιος Αμφιλόχιος Μακρής της Πάτμου (+1970):

“Αγάπησε τον Ένα για να σε αγαπήσουν όλοι. Θα σε αγαπούν όχι μόνο οι άνθρωποι, αλλά και αυτά τα άλογα ζώα, γιατί η θεία χάρη όταν βγαίνει έξω, ηλεκτρίζει και μαγνητίζει ότι βρει μπροστά της. Αλλά όχι μόνο θα σε αγαπούν, θα σε σέβονται κιόλας, γιατί στο πρόσωπο το δικό σου θα εικονίζεται το αγνό παρθενικό πρόσωπο Εκείνου, που θα αγαπάς και θα λατρεύεις”.



Kaart met alle orthodoxe kerken en kapellen in Nederland ╰⊰¸¸.•¨* Dutch


Kaart met alle orthodoxe kerken en kapellen in Nederland


Heilige Cornelius de Honderdman :         facebook
Moeder van God :         facebook

HH. Basilius de Grote en Ludger:
Moeder Gods Bescherming:

H. Katharina – zie website         facebook
Heilige Maria van Egypte:
Heilige Nikolaas van Myra:         facebook
Sf. Ioan Gura de Aur:         facebook

Klooster van de Geboorte van de Moeder Gods:

Heilige Myrondraagsters:         facebook
H. Nektarios:

Heilige Eersttronende Apostelen Petrus en Paulus:         facebook

Heilige Nektarios van Egina:
Sf. Cuvioasa Parascheva van Iaşi:


Geboorte van de Alheilige Moeder Gods:

Heilige Grootmartelares Anastasia:         facebook


Heilige Maximos de Belijder:


Heilige Transfiguratie:         facebook
Heilige Apostel en Evangelist Johannes:

Heilige Joannes de Doper:
Heilige Maria Magdalena:
Heilige Eerbiedwaardige Païsiï Hilendarski en de Heilige Aartsengelen Michaël en Gabriël:
H.Bonifatius en H.Xenia van St. Petersburg:

Heilige Nikolaas de Wonderdoener:

Heilige Profeet Elias:

Heilige Panteleimon:         facebook


H. Johannes Chrysostomos en Servatios:         facebook
Missie van de H. Apostel Thomas :         facebook

Heilige Theophano: zie website
Heilige Sava:
Hl. Tichon, patriarch van Moskou:


H. Rechtgelovige Grootvorst Alexander Nevskij:         facebook
Heilige Drie-eenheid:
Heilige Nikolaos:

Heilige Gregorios de Theoloog :

Heilige Porfirius:

Verkondiging aan de Moeder Gods :
Heilige Simeon de Myronvloeiende:

HH. Constantijn en Helena:

Heilige Grootvorst Lazarus van Servië:

Heilige Nikolaas van Myra:

Video: Ορθόδοξη Βάπτιση Ολλανδού στον ποταμό Waal της Ολλανδίας



Ορθόδοξη Βάπτιση Ολλανδού στον ποταμό Waal της Ολλανδίας

Answering Main Street Canada




Answering Main Street Canada


Answering Main Street Canada


We offer you an article written by Fr. Geoffrey Korz, Managing Editor of Orthodox Canada and the Dean of All Saints of North America Orthodox Church in Hamilton ON, Canada.

Some years ago, I had the pleasure of dining in Toronto’s “Greek Town” with a sister in Christ, a Greek grandmother who had been around the Church all her life, and who was a true realist. As we walked through the warm summer streets, surrounded by mobs of young people – many of them Greek, and presumably Orthodox Christians – my friend let out an audible exclamation.

“Look at them, Father – they don’t even know what an Orthodox priest is! Why aren’t they at Church?! They should be ashamed of themselves!”

Of course hearing this, all these young people heard the voice of their own yia-yia, or grandmother, confronting them with their own lack of piety, spiritual observance, and Continue reading “Answering Main Street Canada”

The Life of the Holy Theotokos (God-Bearer): Whom the Grave Could Not Contain



Panagia Arizona 2

The Life of the Holy Theotokos:

Whom the Grave Could Not Contain


The Life of the Holy Theotokos: Whom the Grave Could Not Contain.


The Theotokos (God-Bearer) was born of the elderly Joachim and Anna as an answer to their prayers. After being humiliated and run out of the Temple, Joachim stood in prayer and fasting, in the same cave as once did Elijah the Prophet, begging God to give him and his barren wife a child. In their garden, Anna stood in prayer also, fervently asking God to take away her sorrow. An angel appeared to them both telling them of the great mystery that would be given to them, a daughter who would bear the Life of the World.

Joachim and Anna made a promise that they would give the child back to God, and being very pious and devout, they offered Mary up to be raised in the Temple at the age of three. The High Priest Zacharias, the husband of Anna’s niece and father of John the Baptist, welcomed the child Mary with great delight. Seeing that she would be made the new Ark, carrying within her the New Covenant, he was filled with the spirit and exclaimed, “The souls of the condemned rejoice and the patriarchs exult. Our prophets hoped in thee that they might be delivered from the hands of the devil!” Taking her into the Temple he placed her in the Holy of Holies saying, “Enter into the Holy of Holies, for thou art much purer than myself… For thou art the Temple of God, therefore, remain in Continue reading “The Life of the Holy Theotokos (God-Bearer): Whom the Grave Could Not Contain”

π. Γεώργιος Χριστοδούλου: Αποδέχονται ένα παιδί που αλλάζει φύλο & όχι ανθρώπους σαν την Ναταλία Λιονάκη



Η διάσημη Ελληνίδα ηθοποιός Ναταλία Λιονάκη

στις 14 Αυγούστου 2017 έγινε μοναχή στην Κένυα στην Ιεραποστολή

της Αφρικής & ονομάστηκε Αδελφή Φεβρωνία


π. Γεώργιος Χριστοδούλου:

Αποδέχονται ένα παιδί που αλλάζει φύλο και όχι ανθρώπους

σαν την Ναταλία Λιονάκη

Μου είπε η μαμά ενός παιδιού στο κατηχητικό: «Εμένα το παιδί μου δε θα το κάνετε μοναχή, εγώ την προορίζω για μοντέλο, για να μη χαραμίσει την ομορφιά της. Απλά την αφήνω, διότι είναι και οι φίλες της».

Σαν τη Ναταλία τη Λιονάκη υπάρχουν και άλλες και άλλοι, με ομορφιά που συγκρίνεται με αυτή των κοσμικών μοντέλων.

Δεν υπάρχουν όμως μόνο όμορφες και όμορφοι. Υπάρχουν άνθρωποι καλλιεργημένοι, μορφωμένοι με διδακτορικά και με πρότερη κοινωνική κατάσταση, πολλές φορές, αξιοζήλευτη.

Άφησαν τα εγκόσμια, με βαθιά συναίσθηση της αλλαγής που πρόκειται να Continue reading “π. Γεώργιος Χριστοδούλου: Αποδέχονται ένα παιδί που αλλάζει φύλο & όχι ανθρώπους σαν την Ναταλία Λιονάκη”

Eastern Orthodox Parishes in the Netherlands

Eastern Orthodox Parishes in the Netherlands


Καλώς Ορίσατε – Welcome


Jozef Van den Berg, actor, the Netherlands: From atheism to Orthodoxy (+Video)



Jozef Van den Berg, actor, the Netherlands:

From atheism to Orthodoxy

Jozef Van den Berg (Beers, 22 August 1949) is a Dutch puppeteer, playwright and actor, who nowadays lives as a hermit.

Biography of Joseph Van den Berg


From the age of seven, he lived most of his youth at Cuijk, where his father bought an old rectory and tended an accountancy bureau. His father was a primary school teacher, first at Beers and then Rijkevoort, and a member of the resistance during the War. The family he belonged to consisted of eleven children. On January 30th, 1962, at the age of twelve, his father died and afterwards also his best friend Fritz. Already as a child, Van den Berg wanted to become a priest. For Christmas his mother gave him a set to play a little priest. At the age of 10, he played his first theater role as a Pharisee in a Passion Play of the Welpen at the patronage building at Cuijk. At the age of 13 he got a girlfriend, because of which the priesthood disappeared into the background. During his secondary school at the Internaat Bisschoppelijk College [Boarding School Diocesan College] in Roermond he was very active in school theater. For example, he played Sisyphus in the play Sisyphus And Death, and later on, inspired by Henk van Ulsen, with a lot of success Diary Of A Madman by Gogol.


At the end of the 60’s, after obtaining his high school degree, he passed his entrance examination and started at the theater school in Arnhem, which he quit after the second year. He went to live with Ruth in Arnhem and later on moved to Groningen. He applied for social assistance and started playing puppet shows. He borrowed a horse and cart and wandered around puppetering. In this period he became member of the Gurdjieff movement. After a show in Groningen he got acquainted to his wife Hansje, whom he married on September 11th, 1973. They had four children: Lotte [nowadays a well-known playwriter, theater actor and director herself], Maartje, Jasmijn and Jesse Van den Berg. In Groningen he lived on a farm and rented a basement at Zwanestraat where on Wednesday afternoon he played for children, and on Friday evening for adults. He started his professional career as a puppeteer in a puppet show and there he brought numerous characters to life. Eventually he removed the curtain and by doing so became the man with the puppets, visible for the audience. His improvisations were replaced by a play with a title. With a fire department truck, he played with a wandering puppet theater. Living in a mobile home, he brought his plays to the people.

In 1980 he received the Hans Snoekprijs for Appeloog [Apple Eye], left Groningen and moved to Herwijnen in the Betuwe region. There he wrote Moeke en de Dwaas [(little) Mother and the Fool] for the Holland Festival. In 1980 and 1981 he played Moeke en de Dwaas, which was his great breakthrough. After this he played in Paris, the US and Japan. In this show he played a monk. His puppets were his family, consisting of – among others – Luke the monk, as if he had foresight, the materialistic and opportunistic Portemonnee [Wallet], the old, wise, strict Mrs. Witch, the ever rationalizing Mr. King, the melancholic Grootoog [Great Eye], the romantic neurotic Frederik the Bird, Pete the Caterpillar and Mannetje Pluim [(little) Man Feather]. In 1981 he received the CJP-Podiumprijs [Cultural Youth Passport’s Scene Price]. A number of his shows were broadcast by the VPRO TV company. In 1983 the De Dwaas Foundation was established in cooperation with the Ministery of Social Affairs. The foundaition was established by Van den Berg’s technical assistant Gerrit de Beuze, who did his Civilian Public Service in order for him to be employed by this foundation.

In 1988 and 1989, Joseph Van den Berg played his last show Genoeg Gewacht [Enough Waiting], which was a reaction to Waiting For Godot by Samuel Beckett. He wrote this play for his brother Aloys, who was seriously ill. He played this piece 80 times [constantly rewriting it] in the Netherlands and at a festival in New York. It was his ultimate quest and a testimony to his conversion. He drew his inspiration from the Stabat Mater by Vivaldi, sung by Aafje Heynis. Aloys Van den Berg, his brother, came to watch Genoeg Gewacht in a wheelchair. In 1988 his brother died of a brain tumor.


On September 12th, 1989 was the Belgian première of Genoeg Gewacht at Antwerp [Belgium is a predominantly Dutch-speaking country]. That afternoon, Van den Berg had an encounter with God, as he described it later on. Sitting in his dressing room, he wrote a letter he wanted to use that night for the first time in his play. God asked him this question by his own pen: “Why don’t you ever see that I cannot come because I’m already here.” On September 12, 1989 he still played the premiere which later turned out to be his very last show. Van den Berg was – according to his own words – being called by God, and had to answer that.

Before the evening show on September 14th, 1989 at De Singel Arts Center in Antwerp, he took his Bible and asked God what to do. He opened the Bible at the following words: “Go away from their midst and separate yourself” (II Cor. 6:17).

Before the beginning of the play he said to his audience:

“I will try to explain it to you. I hope that you have one thing for me and that is respect for my decision. I will never play again. I have approached a reality which cannot be played anymore. I have searched for a tremendously long time; have been everywhere. Eventually I came to the conclusion, and this conclusion, I have to admit, is that the seeker seeks but he is found. That’s why tonight is the last time I’m on stage. You don’t believe me, but that’s the deceitful side of theater. Therefore, ladies and gentlemen, for this man, for Christ only, have I searched for this peace I wanted. And I know that it is so, and I quit this profession. For me, it’s over. I seek reality. I can’t say things that are not true for me anymore. I wish you a good day. I go. May you all go well. The money you paid can be given back at the box office.”

A deadly silence followed, and the theater audience reacted emotionally. Thus, on September 1989 at 7:55 pm, the theater career of Joseph Van den Berg came to an end.

In 1990 Van den Berg began a quest which would lead him to Maldon (Essex), Athens and the Holy Mountain of Athos, to further find out how he had to continue his road with God. His children and wife had difficulties understanding his conversion.

An important event preceeded his conversion: a woman he knew from the Gurdjieff movement died in a serious traffic accident, and she had pointed out that she wanted to be buried in the Orthodox way. This happened on August 17th at Eindhoven. There, he heard the Trisagion for the first time in Dutch. That’s where he began to see that Gurdjieff wasn’t right. At the end of September 1989 he went to the Greek Orthodox Monastery of Saint John the Baptist at Meldon, Essex, England, where he talked with Elder Archimandrite Sophrony. At the beginning of January 1990 he had a very important meeting in Athens with the Greek Elder Porphyrios. This last one confirmed the experience God had given him in Antwerp, and he told him that he has to now to become an Actor of Christ. He was sent by Father Porphyrios to the Holy Mountain of Athos, where he had a meeting with Father Paisios.

After returning to the Netherlands, and loyal to the word of Father Porphyrios, he began to work on a new family show titled The World Turned Upside Down, where he wanted to convey his new faith. But it seemed that everything was going wrong, and he got in more and more spiritual trouble. He couldn’t sleep anymore and became over-tired. In the middle of this crisis, on June 18, 1990, he asked a priest in order to be accepted into the Orthodox Church. Meanwhile, 40,000 tickets had been sold for his new show. Notwithstanding this, nothing whatsoever came out of his hands. In August, overstressed, he was treated for five weeks at the Psychiatric Centre Nijmegen at the Heilige Land Stichting [Holy Land Foundation]. There was to be no new show. Because of this, peace slowly returned to him and thus he began to write a new piece called The Meeting, in which he wanted to share with his audience what happened to him in Antwerp.

In April 1991 he went to Athens again, to Father Porphyrios, to ask his blessing to play his piece The Meeting. However, he didn’t manage to speak to him, due to his old age and disease. After this, he went to the Holy Mountain of Athos for three weeks, to work on his theater play in the Monastery of Grigoriou.

Having returned to the Netherlands, things evolved in a different way than expected, among other things, because of a subsidy by the Ministery of Culture. At the request of the board of the Foundation De Dwaas, of which Van den Berg had become an employee, he formulated a new mission statement for this Foundation. On May 21st, 1991 he announced this new goal at a board meeting: “The support and promotion of all theatrical activity, in the broadest sense of the word, which expresses the spirit of Christ.” The board and the Ministery of Culture couldn’t reconcile themselves with this and the subsidy was revoked. But once he established it, he didn’t let go of this goal. Thus, unexpectedly, the whole project came to an end. Gradually, Van den Berg began to realize that he would never play The Meeting either. The authorities assumed that he was confused again, and he was declared incapacitated.

During the night of the 1st to the 2nd of June, he realized that he was left alone, and on June 2nd, 1991 he attended the Divine Liturgy at the [small Orthodox] Monastery of the Holy Prophet Elias at St. Hubert. That’s where he left what was left of his money on the collection plate. “Lord, from now on, You have to take care of me. I totally surrender.” There, Archimandrite Pachom read from the Gospel of that Sunday of All Saints: “He that loves father or mother more then me, is not worthy of me: and he that loves son or daughter more then me, is not worthy of me. And he that takes not his cross, and follows after me, is not worthy of me. He that finds his life, shall lose it: and he that loses his life for my sake, shall find it” (Matthew 10:37-39). Two hours later, after the Liturgy, he went straight to the Orthodox Monastery of the Nativity of the Theotokos near Asten, where he stayed for 19 days, and where he left his Mercedes Combi, because it didn’t want to start again. On June 21st, 1991 he put a final end to his theater career at his first try-out, never to be played again, of the show The Meeting in the Streekschouwburg at Cuijk. On June 24th, 1991 he left his home by bicycle, but his tire ran a flat near Waardenburg, so he passed the night at Juke Hudig’s, an artist at Neerijnen. On June 25, 1991, having repaired his bike, he left Juke Hudig, and cycled into the province of Noord-Brabant, to the south. He wanted to drive into the Brabantine land and the entire world. But soon enough he understood intimately that this was not God’s will, and returned to Neerijnen after one night in Eindhoven. On June 30th he collected two or so theater attributes he used in his performances from his house. After this, he returned to Juke Hudig.


His only question was: “How does God want me to shape my calling?” Then, he intimately saw that he had to collect his puppetry box. On July 9th, 1991 he collected the box at his house at Herwijnen, and walked it 15km further to Neerijnen. Having arrived at Neerijnen with his theatre box on wheels, with a Russian cross attached to it, he understood ever more clearly that he had to stay there. During the month of July he stayed for three days on a farm at Neerijnen. On August 1st, 1991 he moved to the bicycle shed of the Neerijnen Town Hall, where he started his public calling. After fifty days, he retreated from publicity and lived nine months in seclusion at the home of an inhabitant of Neerijnen. In June 1992 Joseph returned to the bicycle shed and stayed there, even during the winter. In December 1992, he built a small chapel around his box. On November 1st, 1993, Van den Berg had to leave the bicycle shed on orders of the Neerijnen town council. Two pupils of Neerijnen Elementary School offered the mayor a petition on behalf of the townspeople who thought that he should be able to live on at the shed, but this was of no avail. The [National Public TV-Company’s] Youth News followed the youngsters’ action and was also present on Monday morning November 1st.

On Monday afternoon Joseph decided to collect his belongings, and left the bicycle shed. Co-townsman Harm Hazelhoff had previously offered him room in his garden, under the quince tree, but inwardly Van den Berg didn’t understand yet that he had to accept that invitation. On Monday evening he returned with his belongings to the bicycle shed. During the night of the 1st to 2nd of November, God showed him that he had to be humble and leave the bicycle shed after all. On Tuesday he put his suitcase and other belongings under the quince tree in Hazelhoff’s garden. That same afternoon, someone passed by and told him that De Pleisterplaats [Pull-Up] was his best show. There were four poles close to the quince tree, and Joseph understood from this that he had to build the “Pull-Up” under the quince tree. With this “messenger”, he built a small chapel of 2 by 1.5 meters, which still stands today. He still lives there, and receives people every day. He lives from whatever people bring him. He has no connection to any utility whatsoever. Since a couple of years, there is a toilet in the castle garden, which Joseph and his guests can use, and since a few years he has a mobile phone for emergencies.

In the media

Joseph Van den Berg gets a lot of attention from the media because of his extraordinary way of life. The attention of the media never wanes, even after his theater career. Since the start of his calling, the Dutch national newspapers, magazines, TV companies, radio and weblogs publish at least one article about him every year. In 1993 he was interviewed by Rik Felderhof for the NCRV TV program De Stoel, and by Fred Wittenberg for the KRO radio program Radio Ararat. In 1995 he got interviewed for the NCRV program Rondom Tien. In 2001 he was visited again for De Stoel. In 2003 Arjan Visser arranged a radio interview with him for Spiegels (RVU). In 2005 he was visited by Martin Simek for the Christmas night broadcast of Šimek’s Nachts (RVU) and in 2006 there was a radio interview by Friedl’ Lesage in Het beste moet nog komen for Radio 1 (Flanders, Belgium). Omroep Gelderland dedicated a number of programs to him. In 2007, Auke Hamers recorded the short movie Ik Speel niet meer [I don’t play anymore], about his life and religious convictions. In 2010, the TV show Man Bijt Hond made a short portrait of Joseph Van den Berg.

Note 1: During an interview with the Belgian “top” newspaper De Standaard (, Jozef Van den Berg told an interesting story. A man wanted to have a date with a woman he hadn’t met or seen yet. The woman agreed on condition that the man would buy her flowers every week. This seemed strange, demanding and even somewhat arrogant to the man, but eventually he agreed. However, when they met, the man was so overwhelmed by her beauty, intelligence and character that he told her he would buy her flowers every day. To Jozef Van den Berg, the same is true for God.

Note 2: Jozef’s daughter Lotte Van den Berg, for the past couple of years a famous director and playwright herself, wrote her first major theater play “Winterverblijf” (Winter Home/Residence) about her struggle with her fathers conversion. The show played in all the great theaters in the Netherlands and Belgium.

This is how it was introduced: “She found her inspiration on a journey through Siberia and Mongolia, where it is too cold to heat the church during the winter, and the celebration of Liturgy forcibly has to be moved to the kitchen or the barn. According to Van den Berg herself: ‘The show will treat people who hope to believe. It is about people who shape their non-understanding, say a prayer or sing a song. Maybe every act is a prayer and an attempt to attach yourself to the world around you.'”

Σταυρώνω όλη τη Γη, να μην έχει εξουσία ο διάβολος στον κόσμο


Σταυρώνω όλη τη Γη, να μην έχει εξουσία ο διάβολος στον κόσμο

Μᾶς ἀναφέρει ὁ Ἀρχιμ. Ἰωάννης Κωστώφ:

Ἰδού τί συνήθιζε μιά μοναχή: Κάθε βράδυ, πρίν κοιμηθῆ ἡ γερόντισσα Συγκλητική τῆς Ἱ. Μονῆς Ἁγ. Μαρίνης Λουτρακίου, ἔπαιρνε ἕνα ξύλινο Σταυρό καί “σταύρωνε” ἐπί 2 ὧρες ὅσους ἀνθρώπους θυμόταν ἀπ᾽ αὐτούς τούς ὁποίους εἶχε γνωρίσει καί ὅπου ἔμεναν. Τέλος, πρίν κατακλιθῆ, ἔκανε ἀρκετούς μεγάλους Σταυρούς στόν Οὐρανό καί, ὅταν τή ρωτούσαμε ποῦ σταυρώνει, μᾶς ἀπαντοῦσε: “Σταυρώνω ὅλη τή Γῆ, νά μήν ἔχη ἐξουσία ὁ Διάβολος στόν κόσμο!”

Καί μιά εὐλαβής λαϊκή: Κατά τή διάρκεια τῆς νύκτας, στά διαλείμματα τῆς ἀγρυπνίας τήν ὁποία ἔκανε κάθε βράδυ ἡ Κλαιομαρία τοῦ Περισσοῦ, ὑποτακτική τοῦ Γέροντος Ἰωσήφ τοῦ Ἡσυχαστοῦ, ἔβγαινε ἀπ᾽ τό σπίτι της καί σταύρωνε τίς πόρτες τῶν γειτόνων της. Στεκόταν σέ κάθε πόρτα, ἔλεγε τήν εὐχή, σταύρωνε τούς ἀνθρώπους, πού κάθονταν στό σπίτι καί προχωροῦσε σέ ἄλλο γιά τήν ἴδια ἐργασία.

Ἀπό τό Βιβλίο: Ἀρχιμ. Ἰωάννου Κωστώφ, ΣΤΑΥΡΟΣ, ΔΑΙΜΟΝΩΝ ΤΟ ΤΡΑΥΜΑ, Τό δικό μας Holywood (=Ἱερό Ξύλο), ἐκδ. Ἁγ. Ἰωάννης ὁ Δαμασκηνός, ΑΘΗΝΑ 2011



Video – Riverside, California, USA: Fisher of men – Winning converts to the Orthodox Faith


Riverside, California, USA: Fisher of men


Winning converts to the Orthodox Faith

Η ανθρωποφαγική επίθεση στην Ναταλία Λιονάκη

Η ανθρωποφαγική επίθεση στην Ναταλία Λιονάκη

Δεν έχουν περάσει παρά ελάχιστα εικοσιτετράωρα από τη ψήφιση, από 148 βουλευτές του Ελληνικού Κοινοβουλίου, του νόμου με τον οποίον θα επιτρέπεται η αλλαγή φύλου από τα 15 χρόνια.

Με λύπη και όχι έκπληξη παρακολουθώ μέσα από τις σελίδες κοινωνικής δικτύωσης ένα μεγάλο μέρος εκείνων που με περισσή άνεση διαρρήγνυαν τα ιμάτια τους, λέγοντας πως ένα παιδί που πηγαίνει ακόμα στο γυμνάσιο μπορεί ελαφρά την καρδία να αλλάξει το φύλο του, λες και πρόκειται για τη σχολική του τσάντα, εδώ και μερικές μέρες να λοιδορούν την από καιρό ενήλικη κυρία Ναταλία Λιονάκη, επειδή αποφάσισε να περάσει «κουρά» και να γίνει μονάχη στην Κένυα, λαμβάνοντας το νέο της σχηματικό όνομα: Φεβρωνία.

Αλήθεια, αυτοί οι κύριοι όταν ο τεράστιος Λέοναρντ Κοέν επί πέντε ολόκληρα έτη είχε ασπαστεί το βουδισμό και είχε γίνει μοναχός θα τολμούσαν να τον Continue reading “Η ανθρωποφαγική επίθεση στην Ναταλία Λιονάκη”

Η διάσημη Ελληνίδα ηθοποιός Ναταλία Λιονάκη είπε: “Ακολούθησα το Μοναχισμό γιατί πλημμύριζα από χαρά και φως”


Η διάσημη Ελληνίδα ηθοποιός Ναταλία Λιονάκη είπε: 

“Ακολούθησα το Μοναχισμό γιατί πλημμύριζα από χαρά και φως”

“Δεν ακολούθησα το δρόμο του Θεού από ερωτική απογοήτευση ούτε από κατάθλιψη, τον ακολούθησα επειδή με πλημμύριζε από χαρά και φως ο Χριστός”.

Αυτά ήταν τα λόγια της Ναταλίας Λιονάκη στη δημοσιογράφο Μαρία Γιαχνάκη όταν την είχε συναντήσει στο σπίτι της στο Παγκράτι, την περίοδο που όλοι την κυνηγούσαν για να μιλήσει στα τηλεοπτικά παράθυρα.

Οι δύο γυναίκες είχαν καθίσει για ώρες μαζί στον καναπέ του σπιτιού της Ναταλίας όπου είχε βρεθεί για λίγες ώρες ώστε να δει τη μητέρα της που ήταν ασθενής΄.

Η Ναταλία τότε έλεγαν όλοι ήταν σαν χαμένη, όμως η Ναταλία δεν ήταν καθόλου σαστισμένη απλώς είχε παραδώσει την ζωή της, στο θέλημα του Θεού προσπαθώντας να κόψει το δικό της θέλημα όπως λένε στην μοναστική ζωή και Continue reading “Η διάσημη Ελληνίδα ηθοποιός Ναταλία Λιονάκη είπε: “Ακολούθησα το Μοναχισμό γιατί πλημμύριζα από χαρά και φως””

The conversion of a fanatical Jew woman who wanted to kill Elder Ephraim of Arizona, USA




The conversion of a fanatical Jew woman

who wanted to kill Elder Ephraim of Arizona, USA

Everyone knows the high spiritual status of Elder Ephraim of Arizona, USA. A fanatical Jew woman wanted to do evil to the Elder years ago. So, dressed as a pious Christian with long clothes and headcovering, she went to see the Elder. His subordinates told her she could not see him and tried other days. After days we allowed her to see him. She had hidden a knife in her clothes to kill him, and she was suddenly surprised when she saw him standing upright and cried Elder! She saw him flying in the air at a poached stand! She tells her, drop the knife and I’ll come down to talk. The monastery guards came in and disarmed her. Finally the woman repented and believed and was baptized. The Holiness of the Elder appeared once again.


Spiritual Trips in Holy Mountain and Holy Land

Η θαυμαστή μεταστροφή μίας Εβραίας που προσπάθησε να δολοφονήσει τον Γέροντα Εφραίμ της Αριζόνα των ΗΠΑ



elder ephraim 27

Η θαυμαστή μεταστροφή

μίας Εβραίας που προσπάθησε να δολοφονήσει τον 

Γέροντα Εφραίμ της Αριζόνα των ΗΠΑ

Όλοι γνωρίζουν την υψηλή πνευματική κατάσταση του Γέροντος Εφραιμ της Αριζόνα. Μια γυναικά φανατική Ἑβραία ήθελε να κάνει κακό στον Γέροντα πριν χρόνια. Ντυμένη λοιπόν σαν ευσεβέστατη Χριστιανή με μακριά ρούχα και μαντίλι πήγε να δει τον Γέροντα.

Οι υποτακτικοί του της είπαν δεν μπορεί να τον δει και επιχείρησε και άλλες μερες. Μετα από μέρες της επιτρέψαμε να τον δει.

Είχε κρύψει ένα μαχαίρι μέσα στα ρούχα της για να τον σκοτώσει και μπαίνοντας μέσα ξαφνιάστηκε όταν τον είδε να είναι σε όρθια στάση ψηλά και φώναξε: “Γέροντα!”.

Τον είδε να ίπταται στον αέρα σε στάση ευλογιάς!

Της λέει άσε το μαχαίρι και θα κατέβω να μιλήσουμε. Μπήκαν μέσα κ οι υποτακτικοί και την αφόπλισαν. Τελικά η γυναίκα μετανόησε και πίστεψε και βαπτίστηκε.

Η αγιότητα του Γέροντα φάνηκε άλλη μια φορά.


Spiritual Trips in Holy Mountain and Holy Land

Saint Priest-Martyr Vasily Martysz of Alaska, Canada & Poland (+1945) – 4 May




Saint Priest-Martyr

Vasily Martysz of Alaska, Canada & Poland (+1945)

4 May


The holy New Martyr Archpriest Vasily Martysz was born on February 20, 1874 in Tertyn, in the Hrubieszow region of southeastern Poland. His father Alexander was a judge in Molczyce near Pinsk. After his retirement, he was ordained a priest and became rector of a local parish.


In 1884, at the age of ten, Vasily made a brief trip to New York with his father. His beautiful singing during a church service attracted the attention of Bishop Vladimir. The hierarch prophesied that young Vasily would become a priest, and promised that he would invite him to his diocese in America once he was ordained. After returning to his country, he remembered the bishop’s words, and decided to follow in his father’s footsteps and become a priest. He began his theological education at the seminary in Chelm, where the rector was Bishop Tikhon (Belavin), the future Patriarch of Moscow.

Immediately after graduating in July 1899, Vasily married Olga Nowik, and was ordained a deacon. On December 10, 1900 he was ordained a priest. That same month he left Breman for America. The young couple expected to be assigned to a parish in New York, but instead he was appointed to a parish in Alaska. Together with the newly-appointed Bishop Tikhon, he began his missionary service in the land of St Herman.


Orthodoxy had arrived in Alaska with the coming of the monastic mission from Valaam in 1794. At the start of the twentieth century, climatic and social conditions in this vast territory remained difficult. In his pastoral work, Fr Vasily met Russian settlers and indigenous inhabitants of the region, Eskimos and Aleuts. He also encountered gold rush pioneers quite often..

Fr Vasily’s first parish was extensive. He was headquartered on Afognak, but he was also responsible for the people on Spruce and Woody Islands near Continue reading “Saint Priest-Martyr Vasily Martysz of Alaska, Canada & Poland (+1945) – 4 May”

Αλβανία: Νεομάρτυρες & Ομολογητές Ιερείς του 20ου αιώνα υπό το αθεϊστικό καθεστώς


Αλβανία: Νεομάρτυρες και Ομολογητές Ιερείς του 20ου αιώνα

υπό το αθεϊστικό καθεστώς

Μαρτυρικές μορφές της Ιερωσύνης στη Βόρειο Ήπειρο που έζησαν τον διωγμό του Χότζα.

Οι περισσότεροι δεν ευτύχησαν να ξανακούσουν τον ήχο της καμπάνας

(αφιέρωμα της εφημερίδας ΠΡΩΙΝΟΣ ΛΟΓΟΣ το 2006)

Οι σεβάσμιες ιερατικές μορφές από το χώρο της Βορείου Ηπείρου, που θα παρουσιάσουμε εν συντομία παρακάτω, έζησαν τoν διωγμό της Ορθόδοξης πίστης από το αθεϊστικό καθεστώς του Χότζα. Πέθαναν πονεμένες, κυρτωμένες και λευκασμένες από τα μαρτύρια, χωρίς να προδώσουν «τα ιερά και τα όσια». Τις σκεπτόμαστε και κυλάει από το μέτωπό μας αιμάτινος ιδρώτας.
Κάποιοι απ’ αυτούς τους ιερείς, λίγοι, πρόλαβαν και χάρηκαν την ανάσταση της Εκκλησίας της Αλβανίας με τον Αρχιεπίσκοπο Αναστάσιο. Και ξαναλειτούργησαν ύστερα από μισό περίπου αιώνα! Η χάρη του Θεού τους έδωσε αυτή την μεγάλη τιμή. Τι και αν δεν είχαν ούτε καλυμμαύχι, ούτε ράσο, ούτε άμφια. Εκείνο που τους έδινε αξία και έκανε ευπρόσδεκτη την προσφορά τους στο θείο Θυσιαστήριο ήταν οι αρετές που τους συνόδευαν. Και κυρίως η υπομονή και η σταθερή προσκόλληση στην Εκκλησία του Χριστού. Έκλεισαν τα μάτια τους, μονολογώντας: «Διήλθομεν δια πυρός και ύδατος και εξήγαγες ημάς εις αναψυχήν».
Οι περισσότεροι, όμως, αποσχηματισμένοι κληρικοί δεν ευτύχησαν να ξανακούσουν τον γλυκό ήχο της καμπάνας. Έσβησαν μαραμένοι σαν το κερί που λιώνει, μετά από μια μακροχρόνια και εξαντλητική ταλαιπωρία. Ή ταξίδεψαν στον άλλο κόσμο καταπληγωμένοι από τα μαχαίρια και τα ξίφη των αρνητών της πίστης.

π. Κων/νος Βόσδος

Γεννήθηκε το 1902 στην Κοσοβίτσα. Ο πατέρας του ήταν ιερέας και έτσι ανατράφηκε σε θρησκευτικό περιβάλλον, που του καλλιέργησε την αγάπη του για το Χριστό. Τελείωσε το σχολαρχείο στην Ελλάδα και μετά το θάνατο του πατέρα του χειροτονήθηκε, το 1942, ιερέας. Υπηρέτησε με ζήλο στα χωριά Κοσοβίτσα, Σωφράτικα, Σελειό και Κλεισάρι. Η Μητρόπολη Αργυροκάστρου, αναγνωρίζοντας και επαινώντας το έργο του, του απένειμε τον τίτλο του Σταυροφόρου και τον Continue reading “Αλβανία: Νεομάρτυρες & Ομολογητές Ιερείς του 20ου αιώνα υπό το αθεϊστικό καθεστώς”

Święty Paisjusz z Góry Athos, Grecja (+1994) – 12 lipca ╰⊰¸¸.•¨* Polish


Święty Paisjusz z Góry Athos, Grecja (+1994)

12 lipca

Paisjusz, imię świeckie Arsenios Eznepidis (ur. 25 lipca 1924 w Farasie, zm. 12 lipca 1994 w Suroti) – starzec mnich z Góry Athos, autor pouczeń duchowych, prawosławny święty.


Urodził się w rodzinie greckiej w Kapadocji. W miesiąc po jego narodzeniu jego rodzice, razem z innymi greckimi mieszkańcami regionu musieli opuścić Azję Mniejszą i przenieść się do Grecji w ramach wymiany ludności między Grecją a Turcją. Wychowany w bardzo pobożnej rodzinie, Arsenios od dzieciństwa czytał żywoty świętych. Po ukończeniu szkoły podstawowej uzyskał kwalifikacje stolarza i podjął pracę w tym charakterze. W ostatnich latach II wojny światowej służył w armii greckiej jako radiotelegrafista, wyróżniając się odwagą. Po zakończeniu służby w 1949 i znalezieniu mężów dla swoich sióstr wstąpił do monasteru. W 1950 dotarł na Athos, gdzie został skierowany do klasztoru Esfigmenu. Po czteroletnim okresie nowicjatu złożył pierwsze śluby zakonne z imieniem Awerkiusz.

W 1956 złożył wieczyste śluby małej schimy, otrzymując nowe imię Paisjusz. Miało to miejsce w klasztorze Filoteu, gdzie mnich Paisjusz przeniósł się krótko po pierwszych ślubach. Jego ojcem duchowym w klasztorze został starzec Symeon. W 1958 na krótko opuścił Athos, by odwiedzić wieś, w której się wychował i powstrzymać wstępowanie przez jej mieszkańców do różnych Kościołów protestanckich. Następnie w latach 1962–1964 mieszkał w klasztorze św. Katarzyny na Synaju. Po powrocie na Athos osiedlił się w jednym ze skitów klasztoru Iwiron. W 1966 musiał przejść poważną operację płuc.

W tym samym czasie starzec objął opieką duchową żeński monaster św. Jana Teologa w Suroti k. Salonik. Mieszkając na stałe na Athosie regularnie odwiedzał klasztor, przekazując mniszkom swoje pouczenia duchowe. Opiekował się również atoskim starcem Tichonem, mieszkańcem skitu Świętego Krzyża przy klasztorze Stawronikita. Przed swoją śmiercią Tichon przyjął od niego śluby wielkiej schimy i polecił Paisjuszowi pozostanie w jego pustelni. Mnich żył tam do 1979, gdy przeniósł się do pustelni przy klasztorze Kutlumus.

Do tej pory prowadzący głównie życie samotnicze schimnich Paisjusz stał się w wymienionym roku jednym z najpopularniejszych starców Athosu. Był odwiedzany przez tysiące wiernych, którzy poszukiwali u niego wsparcia duchowego. Starzec nadal opiekował się również mniszkami z monasteru w Suroti. Ascetycznego trybu życia nie zmieniał mimo pogarszającego się stanu zdrowia. Oprócz choroby płuc cierpiał z powodu krwotoków. 5 października 1993 zdiagnozowano u niego raka. Po przebyciu operacji, mimo bardzo ciężkiego stanu, został na własne życzenie przeniesiony do monasteru w Suroti, by móc nadal spotykać się z wiernymi. Zmarł 12 lipca 1994 w klasztorze, gdzie też został zgodnie z prośbą pochowany.

Jego uczniem duchowym był metropolita czarnogórski i nadmorski Amfilochiusz (Radović).

13 stycznia 2015 Patriarchat Konstantynopolitański ogłosił Paisjusza świętym.


Starzec Paisjusz należał do najpopularniejszych mnichów Góry Athos żyjących w XX wieku. Jego pouczenia duchowe zostały po śmierci spisane przez mniszki klasztoru w Suroti i są cyklicznie wydawane pod wspólnym tytułem Słowa.

Duchowny w swoim nauczaniu surowo krytykował kulturę i obyczajowość współczesnego świata, który określał jako zdominowany przez grzech. Twierdził, że współczesny człowiek świadomie odchodzi od Boga i oddaje się nowym formom bałwochwalstwa, zaś łamanie zasad etyki chrześcijańskiej uważa za przejaw postępu. Zachowywał również sceptyczną postawę wobec świeckiego wykształcenia, które uważał za potencjalną przeszkodę w drodze do rozwoju duchowego (jeśli człowiek nie zachowa pokory). Krytykował współczesny materializm i nakazywał swoim uczniom dążenie do pełnej czystości i wyzbycie się z wszelkich pragnień. Jako środek na drodze do osiągnięcia łask bożych widział pracę. Zapowiadał również przyszłą naprawę moralną świata i triumf chrześcijaństwa, jego zapanowanie jako religii obowiązującej we wszystkich krajach.

Pisma i pouczenia mnicha Paisjusza są przekładane na język polski przez Andrzeja Bienia i Krzysztofa Tura, przy konsultacji biskupa Jerzego (Pańkowskiego), archimandryty Warsonofiusza (Doroszkiewicza), hieromnicha Gabriela (Krańczuka) oraz Jerzego Betlejko.

Wspomnienie liturgiczne w Cerkwi prawosławnej przypada w dniu 12 lipca.