Anyone who prays, or has tried to pray and given up in discouragement, knows praying—really praying—is not easy. Praying consistently seems almost impossible. Too often and too easily, prayer becomes a burden: one more item on an already overcrowded to-do list. Failing to pray becomes a source of guilt and stress as we must once again admit our inconstancy and procrastination to our father confessor. Yet, our Lord said, "Come to me, all of you who are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. My burden is easy and my yoke is light" (Matt. 11:30). The purpose of this book, then, is not to add to the burden, but to ease it by distilling the advice and experience of those who pray.
About the Author: L. Joseph Letendre is the author of the popular guide Preparing for Confession. His writing has also appeared in Touchstone, The Reformation and Revival Journal, and St. Vladimir’s Theological Quarterly. He recorded the audiobook of St. Nicholai Velimirovic’s Prayers by the Lake for Ancient Faith Publishing. He holds degrees in psychology, philosophy, and education, as well as an MDiv from St. Vladimir’s Seminary. He is a parishioner at All Saints Antiochian Orthodox Church in Chicago, Illinois.
Page Length: 72 pages
Author: Kopyttseva, Natalia Mikhailovna
This book is the ideal companion to the previously published Champion of Good: The Life of Father Ilarion (Holy Trinity Publications, Jordanville, 2011). All who have already encountered Father Ilarion through his life will be equally engaged by his words. Those who meet him first through his preaching will want to go on to read his life. Together, they convey a potent message of the possibilities that open to the human soul that turns to God with singleness of mind and humility. The sermons are grouped by subjects. One index lists the sermons in church calendar order and the other index lists the sermons in chronological order for those who wish to see what was preached in an historical context.
Copyright Holy Trinity Monastery
Author: Kopyttseva, Natalia Mikhailovna
In Father I saw a person who lived for God…. In all life’s situations, Fr Ilarion maintained a grace-imbued state of spirit, the fruits of which were love, joy, peace, long suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and the other virtues that made it impossible to be near him and not feel glad just to be alive.
Many lovers of literature are familiar, through Dostoyevsky’s works, with the concept of the Russian "Staretz," or spiritual elder. This biography offers a vivid portrayal of an authentic Staretz of our own day, Father Ilarion—a monk of the renowned Glinsk hermitage in modern-day Ukraine, who spent much of his life as a parish priest in a village in the Novgorod region of Russia. His life offers a vision of a simple Christian life in the contemporary world that will captivate the reader and awaken or rekindle a desire to live a life centered on the love of God and neighbour rather than on the pursuit of material wealth.
It also presents unique insights into the Orthodox Church in Russia under communism and in the immediate post-communist period, demonstrating how the Faith was kept alive after the closure of so many churches and monasteries and the exile or execution of clergy and believers. The account of the life of the Glinsk hermitage is particularly detailed. With many first hand contributions from Father Ilarion’s spiritual children, this history also provides a glimpse into contemporary Russian culture and religious perspectives.
The book includes an eight page glossy photo insert.
Copyright Holy Trinity Publications
In the style of his beloved podcast, Fr. Barnabas Powell offers reflections for each workday of the year to inspire us to live out our faith in the real world every day. Read these brief, pithy thoughts for a shot of encouragement to live each day as Orthodox on Purpose.
Page Length: 272 pages
The Life and Teachings of Elder Paisius of Sihla.
Elder Paisius (Olaru) of Sihla (1897–1990) was one of the most beloved spiritual fathers of Romania in recent times. In his youth he lived a life of prayer and service, learning from an older generation of spiritual giants. After World War II he moved to Sihăstria Monastery, where his spiritual son, Elder Cleopa, had recently become abbot. It was there that he became renowned for his spiritual wisdom and discernment, confessing the monks and laymen who came to the monastery. Eventually he moved to the nearby Sihla Skete, where he could continue his life of prayer in greater solitude.
Throughout the Communist period, Elder Paisius was a refuge and shelter for those who desired to preserve their faith in those difficult times. Professors and doctors, farmers and factory workers all came to the humble elder to hear words of consolation, encouragement, and direction. A father of love and hope, he focused the gaze of his flock on Christ and His Heavenly Kingdom, expressing the wish that the Lord grant them a “little corner of Paradise.”
Included in the present volume are the life of this remarkable elder, many of his spiritual teachings, recollections of his spiritual children, interviews conducted with him, his letters, and his poetry.
“Prayer is not a theory that one learns in school. The prayer of the heart, that is, prayer made with the awareness of the heart, is a gift of the Holy Spirit…. Whoever loves God with his whole soul, with all his strength and all his heart, will be endowed with the gift of prayer of the heart and the gift of holy tears.”
Author: Archimandrite Ioanichie (Bălan)