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Fall 2012 (#51)

Reading Hagiography: How to Engage those Astonishing, Perplexing, Archaic, and Stunningly Grace-Filled Saints' Lives
For readers who intermittently wrestle (like Jacob and his angel) over the vagaries of saints' Lives, Byzantinist Dr. Maria Kouroumali explains how to value some of the oldest and most sublime literature in Christendom.

Byzantine Bride-Shows and the Restoration of Icons: A Tale of Four Iconophile Empresses
by Mother Nectaria McLees
The historical foundations of the Life of St. Philaret the Merciful: Byzantine Empresses link generations and dynasties to overthrow their husbands' iconoclasm and restore icon veneration to the Church. Featuring a cast of iconoclast emperors, iconophile empresses, young royalty in and out of love, Charlemagne and his daughter, and an Arabian caliph from One Thousand and One Nights.

Early Church Writers on Hagiography
Three choice extracts by esteemed first-millenium hagiographers.

Summer 2012 (#50)

Turkey and the First Throne of Orthodoxy: A Reconsideration
Turkish historian Dr. Elçin Macar reviews the historic tensions and contemporary pulse of relations between the Ecumenical Patriarchate and the Republic of Turkey. A revealing look at recent history, international influences, and the dawning prospect of rapprochement between the Orthodox Church and Turkey’s secular state. An insightful view of a troubled era.

Euripides and Puccini under the Ottomans: The Surprising Richness of Greek Girls’ Schools in the Late Empire
In a rare glimpse of Greek education in the late Ottoman Empire, Turkish professor and historian Dr. Oya Macar describes the genesis of women's secondary schools, and the methods, curriculum, and creativity that left a legacy.

The Seal of the Gift of the Holy Spirit: Preparing Chrism at the Ecumenical Patriarchate
by Mother Nectaria McLees
Explore the centuries-old preparation and sanctification of holy chrism in an elaborate and grace-filled Holy Week ritual at the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Constantinople.


Spring 2012 (#49)

The Hospitality of Abraham: Orthodox Ethics and Reproduction
After a Spring 2011 lecture on reproductive screening techniques, a lively discussion arose in the graduate bioethics seminar offered by Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology in Brookline, Massachusetts. Led by Dr. Timothy Patitsas, Assistant Professor of Christian Ethics, the class was described by its students as life-changing and revelatory. We think you'll agree.

The Embryo in Orthodox Christian Theology and Tradition
In a remarkable linking of science, scripture and the Church fathers, scientist-theologian Metropolitan Nikolaos (Hatzinikolaou) of Mesogaia and Lavreotiki spoke at Chambésy, Switzerland in 2002 on "The Embryo and Its Development in Regards to Its Formation as a Complete Human Being". These selections from his full address give a glimpse of Orthodox bioethics at its best.

While as Yet He Was in His Mother's Womb…
A homily on the Visitation of Mary to Elizabeth from the Latin Roman Breviary for July 2, Second Nocturn, attributed to St. John Chrysostom.


Winter 2012 (#48)

Orphans in Contemporary Russia: The Russian Orphan Opportunity Fund
When Andrew and Georgia Williams founded the Russian Orphan Opportunity Fund in Moscow, Russia in the late 1990's, the charity ran on hope, inspiration, and a handful of generous donors. Fourteen years later, ROOF is still working hard to change the lives of orphans and post-orphanage graduates throughout western Russia. In this wide-ranging interview the Williams' describe the extensive Russian state-run orphanage system and the innovative programs and staff that are improving the conditions of parentless children in Russia today.

Inspiration in The Making
Matushka Nadezhda Dorogochenko on her family's remarkable Orthodox farm community for abandoned, disabled, and orphaned children near Moscow, Russia.

Orphanages and Philanthropy In Byzantium
Professor Timothy Miller of Salisbury University, Maryland, gives an insightful and often surprising overview of Byzantine philanthropy: how modern hospitals and the care of orphans originated and flourished in the Eastern Christian Empire before spreading to the West.