Welcome to Saint Herman's, Hudson, Ohio

This blog is a partial compilation of the messages, texts, readings, and prayers from our small community. We pray that it will be used by our own people, to their edification. And if you happen by and are inclined to read, give the glory to God!

The blog title, "Will He Find Faith on the Earth?" is from Luke 18:8, the "Parable of the Persistent Widow." It overlays the icon of the Last Judgment, an historical event detailed in Matthew Chapter 25, for which we wait as we pray in the Nicean Creed.

We serve the Holy Orthodox cycle of services in contemporary English. Under the omophorion of His Eminence Metropolitan Joseph of the Bulgarian Patriarchal Diocese of the USA, Canada and Australia, we worship at 5107 Darrow Road in Hudson, Ohio (44236). If you are in the area, please join us for worship!

Regular services include:
Sunday Divine Liturgy 10AM (Sept 1 - May 31)
930AM (June 1 - Aug 31)
Vespers each Saturday 6PM

We pray that you might join us for as many of these services as possible! We are open, and we welcome inside the Church all visitors. See our Parish web page:

Thursday, May 26, 2022

Sight Versus Vision

Christ is Risen!!!


sight (n): the physical sense by which light stimuli received by the eye are interpreted by the brain and constructed into a representation of the position, shape, brightness, and usually color of objects in space.

Most of us could have probably arrived at a similar definition.  While we’ve all either known or encountered people who are physically blind, their numbers in our current times are indeed very few.  In short, most have “sight”.

But how many of us possess vision?  What is vision?

vision (n):  the special sense by which the qualities of an object are perceived.

Qualities.  As with sight, we could certainly lump shape and brightness and the others into the general category of ‘qualities’.  But it goes beyond just those, doesn’t it?  Vision implies an understanding of that which is perceived.  And while most often we associate that understanding with the sense of sight, the definition does not demand sight’s presence to explain ‘vision’.  In short, vision can be associated with any sense that permits perception.  While this includes sight, it can include any of the five senses.  But it can also be extended to speak to perception that is spiritual.  Let’s look at it this way, by posing this question.

Where does faith come from?

Have you seen God?  Have you smelled Him, heard Him, been touched by Him, tasted Him?  No?  Then what constitutes your own vision of who God is?  What gives your faith vision?  How do you perceive Him?

In today’s Gospel, Jesus goes to the blind man, anoints his eyes with spittle-mud, and instructs him to wash.  There has been nary a sign of physical sight in the man since birth.  When he receives his sight, those who knew him as a beggar hardly recognize him.  He hasn’t changed physically.  What is wrong with their sight?  They ask him how it is that he now sees, and he responds, “A Man called Jesus” healed me.  His vision, while his eyes were yet blind, helped him to determine Who it was that made him well!

Meanwhile, those who questioned the man brought him to the Pharisees, who wanted to accuse Jesus because of the heinous crime of healing a man on the Sabbath who was born blind!  That was their vision.  They repeatedly queried the man.  Who did it?  How did He do it?  What did He say?

Without having any additional information to clarify his vision, the man told the Pharisees, “He is a prophet!” 

With full physical faculties these same Jews refuse to believe his word.  They call his parents, who refuse to answer because they see (with THEIR vision) the treachery of such men.

Before casting the man out of the Temple for defending the truth and the Lord (do you see parallels in today’s ‘political correctness’???), the man says to the Jews, “I’ve told you what happened, and you did not listen (a refusal to expand their vision).  Do you want to become His (Christ’s) disciples?”

It is for exactly these reasons that our Lord says in Mat 23:23-24, “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! ...Blind guides, who strain out a gnat and swallow a camel!” Perfect sight—no vision!

As for the blind man, see his vision on display when our Lord finds him and asks him, “Do you believe in the Son of God?”  The man shows his vision in a question that points to the newness of his sight.  “Who is He, Lord, that I may believe in Him?”

We, too, must see with a singular vision, one oriented to seek the qualities of what our hearts wish to perceive, to know God’s ways, and to find His will in our lives.

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding.” (Prov 3:5)



Wednesday, May 4, 2022

Rules to Live By

Christ is Risen!!!

At every Great Vespers service in the Holy Orthodox Church, following the Great Litany there is a reading from the Book of Psalms.  In such services, typically this manifests as singing phrases from Psalm 1:

Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked.

BLESSED (Hebrew 'esher'):  It is a statement that the one who is being spoken of will find happiness in following the path outlined.

WALKS (Hebrew 'halak'):  Carries the meaning of going along with, a definition of behavior.

COUNSEL (Hebrew 'esa'):  Following the advice of one.

WICKED (Hebrew 'rasha'): Ungodly, morally wrong or corrupt, one who is condemned.

A very short phrase, but filled with wisdom as a rule to which the Lord's faithful should at all costs attempt to follow.

This is one fraction (about one third) of the full verse of Psalm 1:1.  It is filled with such depth of teaching that it dare not be ignored.  And yet, we the "faithful" attend Divine Services and all too often let such richness pass us by.  We hear it with our ears, but don't allow it to register in our hearts.  We sing it with our lips, but do not profess it from the depths of our spirits.  I say this to you as a priest, who all too often does not allow these (and so many other) words to register that I confess this shortcoming regularly!

If we allow a phrase as important as this one to be overlooked, how much additional depth of wisdom are we (I) missing as we come for Divine Services?

Psalm 111:10 teaches, The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.  

FEAR (Hebrew 'yira'): Moral reverence.

BEGINNING (Hebrew 'reshit'): First in place, time, order of rank - the 'principal thing'.

WISDOM (Hebrew 'hokma'):  Skilled or skillful.

It would seem prudent for us, if we are to attempt to follow the precepts of our faith, to observe 'rules to live by', we should put in first place the perspective of being morally reverent and applying all of the skill that God has gifted to us to walk where He (our Lord) has already led - walking the path of not just the godly, but of God Himself!

Indeed, He is Risen!!!