My beloved brothers and sisters in Christ God,
CHRIST IS IN OUR MIDST! HE WAS, IS, AND EVER SHALL BE.
ON MONDAY OF PENTECOST, THE HOLY ORTHODOX CHURCH
GLORIFIES THE LIFE-CREATING HOLY SPIRIT, COESSENTIAL
WITH THE FATHER AND THE SON.
On this day, the Monday of the Pentecost, we Orthodox Christians glorify, and celebrate
the All-Holy and Life-creating and Omnipotent Spirit, Who IS GOD, and One of the Trinity,
and EQUAL IN HONOR AND COESSENTIAL AND EQUAL IN GLORY WITH THE FATHER AND
"O ever breath, keep giving glory to the Spirit of the Lord, through
Whom the impudence of the evil spirit is made to vanish."
Saint Gregory the Theologian maintains that "the Holy Spirit always existed, and exists, and always will exist. He neither had a beginning nor will He have an end, but He was everlastingly ranged and numbered with the Father and the Son. For it was not ever fitting that either the Son should be wanting to the Father or the Spirit to the Son. For then Deity would be shorn of Its Glory in its greatest respect, fo rIt would seem to have arrived at the consummation of perfection as if by an afterthought. Therefore, the Spirit was ever being partaken, but nor partaking; perfecting, not being perfected; sanctifying, not being sanctified; deifying, not being deified; Himself ever the same with Himself, and with Those with Whom He is ranged; INVISIBLE, ETERNAL, INCOMREHENSABLE, UNCHANGEABLE, WITHOUT QUALITY, WITHOUT QUANTITY, WITHOUT FORM, IMPALPABLE, SELF-MOVING, ETERNALLY MOVING, WITH FREE WILL, SELF-POWERFUL, ALL POWERFUL (EVEN THOUGH ALL THAT IS OF THE SPIRIT IS REFERABLE TO THE FIRST CAUSE, JUST AS IS ALL THAT IS OF THE ONLY-BEGOTTEN); LIFE AND LIFE-GIVER; LIGHT AND LIGHT-GIVER, ABSOLUTE GOOD, AND SPRING OF GOODNESS, THE PRINCELY SPIRIT; THE LORD…ENERGIZING AS HE WILLS; DISTRIBUTING HIS OWN GIFTS; THE SPIRIT OF ADOPTION, OF TRUTH, OF WISDOM, OF UNDERSTANDING, OF KNOWLEDGE, OF GODLINESS, OF COUNSEL OF FEAR (WHICH ARE ASCRIBED TO HIM) BY WHOM THE FATHER IS KNOWN AND THE SON IS GLORIFIED; AND BY WHOM ALONE HE IS KNOWN; ONE CLASS, ONE SERVICE, WORSHIP, POWER, PERFECTION, SANCTIFICATION. Why make a long discourse of it? All that the Father has the Son has also, except the being Unbegotten; and all that the Son has the Spirit has also, except the Generation. …So those who reduce the Holy Spirit to the rank of a creature are blasphemous and wicked servants, and worst of the wicked. For it is the part of wicked servants to despise Lordship, and to rebel against dominion, and to make That which is free their fellow servant."
The difference between PROCESSION and SENDING, or the ‘Eternal Origin’ and the ‘Sending in time (temporal) Origin,’ IS IMPORTANT. We look to the Holy Orthodox Fathers to exhort us on the meaning of the TRANSCENDENT TRINITY AND THE ECONOMIC TRINITY (the latter relating to the Church and the world). Most attempts to support the FILIOQUE HERESY of the Latins (Roman Catholics) CONFUSE THE TWO OR FAIL TO RECOGNIZE THE DIFFERENCE. They are NOT THE SAME. THE PROCESSION OF THE HOLY SPIRIT FROM THE SON IS NOT TO BE FOUND IN SACRED SCRIPTURE. Our Lord Jesus Christ said, "Whenever the Paraclete should come, Whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit OF TRUTH WHO PROCEEDS FROM THE FATHER, THAT One shall bear witness concerning Me" [John 15:26].
"…Saint John of Damascus affirms that "WE BELIEVE ALSO IN ONE HOLY SPIRIT, THE LORD AND GIVER OF LIFE, WHO PROCEEDS FROM THE FATHER AND RESTS IN THE SON: THE OBJECT OF EQUAL ADORATION AND GLORIFICATION WITH THE FATHER AND SON UNCREATED, FULL, CREATIVE, ALL-RULING, ALL-EFFECTING, ALL-POWERFUL, OF INFINITE POWER. Lord of All Creation and not under any lord, divinizing, not sanctified; the Intercessor, receiving the supplications of all, in all things like to the Father and Son, PROCEEDING FROM THE Father and communicated through the Son, and participated in by all creation, through Himself creating, and investing with essence and sanctifying, and maintaining the universe…"
"The Medieval Latins (Roman Catholics) also attempted, during the 14th century Palamite Controversy, to demonstrate that the Greek Father accepted a notion OF CREATED GRACE, not only by affirming the procession of the Holy Spirit from God the Father through the Son–meaning thereby that the grace of the Holy Spirit, while deriving from the Father, took manifest form through the creative power of the Son–but also by arguing that the energies-essence distinction of Saint Gregory Palamas was a distinction between the essence and the created energies of God…
"In the end, as various Orthodox theologians have argued, the entire question of the procession of the Holy Spirit and created grace rests ON THE FAILURE OF LATIN theologians to distinguishe BETWEEN "PROCESION" and "MISSION" (and its synonyms) by supposing that proceeding is identical with being conferred. Latin theologians tended to see the "mission" in non-Trinitarian terms, as created action separate from the Providential grace of God the Father and the REDEMPTIVE GRACE of God the Son–a separation that not only disrupts the synergistic action of the Holy Trinity but also distorts the uncreated nature of the Holy Spirit…
"…Saint Gregory Palamas elaborated upon this "UNCREATED" divine life is God’s GIFT OF DIVINIZATION TO CREATED MAN, the MEANS BY WHICH He ENTERS INTO COMMUNION WITH ALL CREATURES THROUGH THE SON IN THE HOLY SPIRIT. Saint Gregory Palamas writes: "The Spirit as energgy pours Itself [Himself] out from the Father through the Son and, if you prefer it, from the Son over all those worthy thereof…For the Spirit is the Spirit of Christ, and comes from Him, being breathed and sent and manifested by Him, but in His VERY BEING and His EXISTENCE. He is the Spirit of Christ, but is NOT from Christ, but FROM THE Father." In the writings of Saint John of Damascus, when he says that the Holy Spirit is NOT from the Son, he means that the Spirit is NOT from the Son as from a first and remote mediate Cause, for it is in this manner that the Holy Spirit is from the Father…" [Source: The Great Synaxaristes of the Orthodox Church]
"Glory Be To GOD
– Saint John Chrysostomos
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With sincere agape in His Holy and Glorious Diakonia (Ministry),
The sinner and unworthy servant of God
+ Father George