November 7, 2013

Psalm 29

The voice of the Lord is upon the waters…
(Psalm 29:3)

The voice of the Lord cries over the waters, saying: Come all ye, receive the Spirit of wisdom, the Spirit of understanding, the Spirit of the fear of God, even Christ who is made manifest.
(from the Great Blessing of Waters on Epiphany)

The feast of Epiphany connects Psalm 29:3 with the Great Blessing of Waters and our Lord’s teaching that He has come into the world to bring the Holy Spirit, the water of life, for all to drink.

Psalm 29 is also the source for the Sunday prokeimenon for tone 7:

The Lord shall give strength to His people! The Lord shall bless His people with peace! (Ps 29:11)  Offer to the Lord, O you sons of God! Offer young rams to the Lord (Ps 29:1.)

In his commentary Saint Augustine says, “The Lord will give strength to His people fighting against the storms and whirlwinds of this world, for peace in this world He has not promised them. “The Lord will bless His people in peace.” And the same Lord will bless His people, affording them peace in Himself; for, says He, “My peace I give unto you, My peace I leave with you.”  (John 14:27)

Incidentally, Saint Augustine used the Old Latin translation of the psalms based on the Greek Septuagint. This version of 29:1 differs significantly from the Hebrew Masoretic text: Offer to the Lord, O you sons of God! Offer young rams to the Lord (Septuagint) instead of Ascribe to the Lord, O heavenly beings, ascribe to the Lord glory and strength (Masoretic).

Saint Vladimir’s Seminary 75th Anniversary

St. Vladimir’s Seminary Campus, watercolor by David Lucs

This evening some 450 supporters will be gathering to celebrate the 75th anniversary of Saint Vladimir’s Seminary at a gala benefit banquet.

Chancery staff will be there but unfortunately His Beatitude, Metropolitan Tikhon is recovering from a bout of pneumonia and will not be able to attend. He has asked Archbishop Nikon of Boston to represent him tonight.

The banquet will include remarks from two special guests: His Grace Bishop Basil (Essey) of Wichita and Mid-America of the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese, and The Very Rev. Dr. John McGuckin, professor at Union Theological Seminary and Columbia University.

This gives me another opportunity to join our three OCA seminaries in asking all parishes to consider contributing 1% of their income to the support of our seminarians. Please take a look at the appeal letter signed by the deans and administrators of Saint Vladimir’s, Saint Tikhon’s and Saint Herman Seminaries.