[Abba Moses said:] 'Fasts and vigils, the study of Scripture, renouncing possessions and everything wordly are not in themselves perfection, as we have said; they are its tools. For perfection is not to be found in them; it is acquired through them. It is useless, therefore, to boast of our fasting, vigils, poverty, and reading of Scripture when we have not achieved the love of God and our fellow man. Whoever has achieved love has God within himself and his intellect is always with God.'
—St. John Cassian, On the Holy Fathers of Sketis.
One of the Twelve Great Feasts of the Orthodox Church, the Feast of the Dormition of the Theotokos is celebrated on August 15/28. From August 1/14 until August 14/27, we observe a fast. This period is known as the “Fifteen days of August”, or Δεκαπενταύγουστο.
During this fast, we abstain from meat, dairy products, fish, wine, and oil on weekdays, and on the weekends, we eat wine and oil. On the feast of the Transfiguration of Christ, August 6/19, we eat fish because it is a feast of the Master, Christ.
We chant the Small and Great Supplicatory Canons alternately at Vespers, save Saturday night and the eves of Transfiguration and Dormition.
This is one of the strictest fasts of the Orthodox Church comparable to the Great Fast. This is due to the greatness of the Feast of the Dormition, which is sometimes called the “Summer Pascha” because of its Resurrectional nature. The severity of this fast is compensated by its brevity on the one hand and the joyous nature of the daily Supplicatory Canons on the other, which is something the faithful anticipate with spiritual longing.
This is the way with which the Church, through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, seeks to prepare us for the upcoming Feast of the Dormition of the Theotokos: through prayer and fasting.
The Church of the Genuine Orthodox Christians (GOC) of America is The Traditionalist Orthodox Church serving the faithful of North and South America following the old (Julian) calendar. Having its roots in the Diocese of Astoria, founded by Metropolitan Petros (Astyfides) in 1954, it presently consists of two Metropolises (America and Toronto) and two dioceses (Etna and Portland, and Boston), shepherded by five hierarchs, under the Presidency of His Eminence, Metropolitan Demetrius of America.
The Church of the GOC of America is an autonomous Eparchy whose Mother Church is The Holy Synod of the Church of the GOC of Greece, under the Presidency of His Beatitude Archbishop Kallinikos of Athens and All Greece. The bishops belonging to the Eparchial Synod are also members of the Holy Synod of the Church of Greece. We resist the heresy of Ecumenism.
Refutation of an “Encyclical Sermon” by a Hierarch of the New Calendar Orthodox Church of Greece and a Wily Denigrator of Anti-Ecumenists and “Old Calendarists” Who Have Walled Themselves Off From His Church
by His Grace, Bishop Clement of Gardikion, Secretary of the Holy Synod
Jonesboro is a town located near the Eastern border of Arkansas, with a population of approximately 60,000. From a human standpoint, it’s not the most likely candidate for a traditional Orthodox mission, but for an Orthodox Christian who orders his priorities around Christ and His Church, it makes perfect sense. Read more...
Q. Are the prayers in the blue prayer book [A Prayerbook for Orthodox Christians by the Holy Transfiguration Monastery —ed.] compulsory for everyone? I mean their morning prayers and the service of Small Compline. My confessor gave me a special rule but wasn’t clear about whether this replaced the book prayers or was in addition to them. Read more...