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Παρασκευή, 6 Ιουλίου 2018

And Thy Neighbor As Thyself ...Monastery Sinai...



And Thy Neighbor As Thyself ...

Only by loving God above all else can we hope to love our neighbor, according to Father Pavlos:

“Love begins in God. First we love God above everything and everybody. Then ourselves, for Christ said to love your neighbor as yourself. Love then goes out from us to other people, and finally, to all of Creation. (Saints have exceeded this by loving others more than themselves, but Christ does not ask this.)”…

Only by discovering the image of God in every other person does one discover the image in his own self, say the Eastern saints, to become by grace what God is by nature. Thus, equality for a monk is to see himself lower than all Creation.

Logistically then, when the Sinai monks join the Monastery’s Bedouin workers to bake their shared bread ration for the week, the combined forces traditionally include the personage of the Archbishop and Abbot of Sinai, who travels on a diplomatic passport and routinely hosts heads of Church and state. Asked why “all hands on deck” includes the captain of the ship, Father Pavlos replied with characteristic economy, “The great of this world participate in its great works.”...

“The wish for heavenly prosperity is not owned by Christians but belongs to peoples of all backgrounds,” noted Archbishop Damianos. “May we all remember not to remain enclosed within the confines of our own faith, but to operate outside it as well to the betterment of all those in need.”

Like the Sinaite antipathy for condemnation of others, such equality derives not from a fabricated, cosmetic unity, but from the simplicity inherent in loving God first – the virtue which incites the grace of the Holy Trinity to dwell within those who undertake to worship Christ in spirit and truth – that they may be one.

From The Ladder of Heavenly Unity:
http://www.mountsinaimonastery.org/news-blog/2015/10/11/the-ladder-of-heavenly-unity

Photography Courtesy of Massimo Pizzocaro
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His Eminence Archbishop Damianos of Sinai, Pharan, and Raitho has said:

The great and difficult journey into the desert is something desired by all who value inner peace. Hence, the monks consider the continued operation of the monastery a duty not just to themselves, but to the visitors who reach this wilderness from all corners of the world, hoping to experience the stillness that exists between the soul and God amidst such beauty sanctified by the divine Presence – where the voice of God may still be heard.

“While the Sinai monks have no wish to burden others, even very modest contributions go far in Egypt. Together with the prayers of the faithful, these will sustain the Monastery in the spiritual goals which have rendered it a global symbol of multiculturalism.

Donations are transferred to St. Catherine’s intact, without diminution except for the small fees charged by financial institutions.

Single or recurring donations can be set up through PayPal on: http://www.mountsinaimonastery.org/support/

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