Tuesday, December 24, 2019

Christ is Born! Glorify Him!



In the icon of the Nativity of Christ, the interior of the cave is black to signify the darkness of the world before Emmanuel (God with us). The star’s light pierces through the darkness and directs our gaze onto the Child, God Incarnate. This light transforms the darkness of our world into a life-giving illumination that cannot be extinguished and transforms the burdens and uncertainties of life into divine serenity and truth. Fix your gaze on the loving countenance of God, and allow your heart to be pierced and engulfed with the light and mercy of the Holy Trinity. Resolve to abide in the Light without reluctance, for “The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear?” (Psalm 27:1).

Mere words fall short in expressing our love and gratitude for the awesome gift you are to us. Our love and gratitude however, will be expressed through our constant prayers for you and your families. Merry Christmas! God is with us!

+Peace,  Mother Theodora

Monday, December 23, 2019

Enjoy our winter issue of Pomegranate Blossoms

We hope you enjoy the newest issue of our newsletter, Pomegranate Blossoms. In it, you'll find:

  • Photos from our canonical establishment
  • The decrees of establishment and approval of our typikon (rule of life)
  • Photos from the Bridegroom's Banquet
  • Photos and quotes from our video, Spiritual Motherhood, which is expected to air on EWTN
  • Photos from other recent events
  • A Christmas message from Mother Theodora

The newsletter also gives instructions on donating toward the remaining matching funds opportunity through the end of the year. We're getting close to our goal! Donations up to $8,854 can still be doubled! Thank you!

We hope that you enjoy a blessed celebration of the birth of Our Lord!

Monday, December 2, 2019

Giving Tuesday: Your donation can be matched!

Our matching donors for the Bridegroom’s Banquet, which took place on Oct. 19, have offered to continue to match donations and pledges until the end of the year, up to the $120,000 goal for the event. Some donations and pledges have already come in after the event, so this means that $12,959 in donations and pledges can still be matched! Please mark “Bridegroom’s Banquet” on your donation to include it in the matching funds opportunity.

The funds will be used for the interior renovations of our chapel, as well as for the general operating expenses of the monastery.

Donation Options:

By Mail:
You may send a donation marked "Bridegroom's Banquet" by cash or check payable to "Christ the Bridegroom Monastery" to:
The Bridegroom's Banquet
Christ the Bridegroom Monastery
17485 Mumford Rd.
Burton, OH 44021
Online:
You may also donate or pledge online with your credit card by using this link. Be sure to choose "Bridegroom Banquet 2019" as the "fund" in step 4. Thank you!

Friday, November 29, 2019

Support the monastery while Christmas shopping!

If you don't already support an Amazon Smile charity, you can help support Christ the Bridegroom Monastery while you do your Christmas shopping! When you make a purchase on Amazon, visit smile.amazon.com and choose Christ the Bridegroom Monastery as your charitable organization. If you go to this webpage the first each time you make an Amazon purchase, Amazon will donate a portion of your purchase to the monastery at no extra cost to you. Thank you!

Friday, November 15, 2019

"Prayer enlarges our hearts:" The Nativity Fast begins

Forty days is a biblical number of preparation and waiting, and as of today, Christmas is 40 days away! So, Christians in the Byzantine tradition begin today a 40-day fasting period in preparation for the Birth of Our Lord.

Here is a beautiful image to keep in mind during this time of waiting, captured in this quote of St. John Vianney, as well as in the words of many other saints of East and West: “My children, you have a little heart, but prayer enlarges it and makes it capable of loving God." Our hearts are our spiritual womb, and just as a child expands a mother's womb as he or she is growing, God expands our hearts by His presence within us. He makes us capable of loving Him and others.

The icon to the right is called the Platytera icon ("More spacious than the heavens"). It depicts Jesus in the womb of Mary, and her hands are outstretched in prayer. During these 40 days, we can recall the immense intimacy she had with Jesus growing in her womb. We can ask her to help us to grow in this same intimacy through prayer, as we empty ourselves through fasting and allow Jesus to enter into us and expand us.

We are praying for you during this time of preparation and expectation!

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

There's still time for your donation to be doubled!

Shortly before this year's Bridegroom's Banquet, another matching donor came forward and pledged $20,000 in addition to the original $100,000 matching funds challenge. We raised $104,845 at or before the event (which is a record total!), but about $15,000 can still be matched, through the end of the year! We would deeply appreciate any help you are able to give, and we are excited to start planning our chapel's interior renovations, with the guidance of the Holy Spirit!

How to Donate

By Mail:
You may send a donation marked "Bridegroom's Banquet" by cash or check payable to "Christ the Bridegroom Monastery" to:

The Bridegroom's Banquet
Christ the Bridegroom Monastery
17485 Mumford Rd.
Burton, OH 44021

Online:
You may also donate online with your credit card by using this link. Be sure to choose "Bridegroom Banquet 2019" as the "fund" in step 4. Thank you!

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

2nd Banquet Video

This second video was played in addition to our Spiritual Motherhood video at the Bridegroom's Banquet on Oct. 19. It begins with a message from Bishop Milan, includes footage from our canonical establishment and institution of the hegumena on Sept. 30, and highlights the recent and future renovations of the monastery chapel. To help with our newest renovation project, please visit the Bridegroom's Banquet tab!