" Mary embodies the paradox that lies at the heart of Orthodox Christology: she represents both humanity and creation – in all their complexity – but she also contains the God who has emptied himself in order to enter into these fully. By means of liturgical poetry, narrative, and art, the Church defines Mary as that holy but richly diverse place where divinity and humanity come together.”
Mary B. Cunningham, Notable Woman
I was 33 years old before I made a pilgrimage to a monastery in my own country. Before then, I had visited numerous monasteries in the country of Georgia: Gareji, Saparo, Martqopi, and also Pechora in Russia, and I loved them very much. At that time, they were just coming back to life after the Soviet period. I could not understand why someone would stay isolated and pray all day, but I did find the idea attractive.
On Monday, we honor St. Photini, one of the first of all people to proclaim the Gospel of Christ. St. Photini lived in first century Palestine and was the Samaritan woman who Christ visited at the well asking her for water. It was she who accepted the “living water” offered her by Christ Himself (John. 4:5-42). All her life, she would continue to draw from this well of life as she remembered His words to her, and shared this living water with others.
Axia has been working with St. Phoebe Center over the last year to create an online series to discuss the possibilities for a parish in creating a program for girls (and boys) to participate in the liturgy. A few weeks ago, we held Part 3, on January 28th.