This presentation was given at the Society of St. John Chrysostom-Western Region (SSJC-WR) 2014 03 15 General Meeting, held at Prince of Peace Benedictine Monastery, Oceanside, CA. The society's apostolate is to "work to make known the history, worship, spirituality, discipline and theology of Eastern Christianity, and for the fullness of unity desired by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ." I have consistently written on the need of the healing the sin (illness) of disunity among the Apostolic Churches [Eastern Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox and Roman Catholic; as well as other Christian ecclesial communites) as taught to us by Christ Himself (as we hear in His priestly discourse to His Apostles at the Mystical Supper, read in Orthodox Churches throughout the world on Holy Thursday Evening of Holy Week) to Christ's prayer to His Father:
That they all may be one, as thou, Father, in me, and I in thee; that they also may be one in us; that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. (Jn 17: 21)
I also have written extensively on the need for the necessity for ourselves as individuals and as members of a family (the Domestic Church or Little Church in the Home) to work toward our own sanctification so that we may attain being "partakers of the Divine Nature" (2 Pt 1: 4). During this 'Presentation' I strenuously emphasized that the original meaning of the 'Domestic Church' in Apostolic times was an Eucharistic assembly in an individual home. This is obviously not the case today ... the norm in modern times is for most individuals and families to be active, committed and faithful members of their parish church. Thus the necessity for all of us as individuals and as member of domestic churches to be active members of their parish assembly.
Parish priests, catechists, and all of the Royal Priesthood of Christ by their Holy Baptism may find this PowerPoint presentation with the accompanying references useful in giving workshops or leading discussion groups on this critical issue that confronts committed Orthodox Christians in today's non-Christian Godless centered world. I pray also it is spiritually useful for all toward their journey to Christ. In as much as the initial posting of this presentation occurs in Great Lent 2014 let me introduce the presentation with the prayer of St. Ephraim the Syrian:
LENTEN PRAYER OF ST. EPHRAIM THE SYRIAN
O Lord and Master of my life, do not give me the spirit of sloth, despair, lust of power and idle talk.
But give rather a spirit of chastity, humility, patience and love to your servant.
Yea, Lord and King, grant me to see my own transgressions and not to judge my brother, for blessed are thee, unto ages and ages. Amen.
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V. Rev. Fr. George Morelli Ph.D. is a licensed Clinical Psychologist and Marriage and Family Therapist.
He is the Coordinator of the Chaplaincy and Pastoral Counseling Ministry of the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese and Religion Coordinator (and Antiochian Archdiocesan Liaison) of the Orthodox Christian Association of Medicine, Psychology and Religion.
Fr. Morelli is also Assistant Pastor of St. George's Antiochian Orthodox Church, San Diego, California.
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