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“Hold that fast which thou hast”

St Filaret

These words from the Book of Revelation [Rev 3:11] have a particular significance in our time, our greatly sorrowful and wicked days which are full of temptation. They remind us of that priceless spiritual treasure that we possess, as children of the Orthodox Church. Yes, we are rich. This spiritual wealth is that which the Holy Church possesses. This is the wealth which belongs to all her faithful children… The teaching of the Faith! Our wonderful, salvific Orthodox Faith! The countless living examples of the lives of people who have lived according to the Faith and according to the lofty principles and laws which the Church sets before us. Those who have attained that spiritual purity and exalted state that is called sanctity, the beauty and magnificence of our Orthodox divine services, and a living participation in them through faith and prayer. The fullness of the spiritual life of grace which is accessible to each and every one. And, what is the crown of all, the unity of the children of the Church in that love of which the savior said: “By this shall all men know that ye are My disciples, if ye have love one to another” [St John 13-35].

—Metropolitan St Philaret of New York, First Hierarch of ROCOR.

Anastasi