The Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States is composed of 44 priests serving the 37 churches and 26 Coptic communities. More
The Season of the Church
The Holy Great Fast
Feb 24 - Apr 11, 2014
Meshir 17 - Parmoute 3, 1730
March 10, 2014
Paremhotep 1, 1730
Since we were wounded by sin, we must treat it with penance. But penance without fast is worthless. Then by fasting justify yourself before God!
Readings During the Holy Great Fast
Fasting & Prayer Program 2014
The Holy Great Fast and Spiritual Discipline
The Holy Great Fast is often referred to as "The Spring of Our Spiritual Life". Spring being the most beautiful season of the year and a time of spiritual renewal.
The 55 days of the Holy Great Fast are considered the most Holy days of fasting of the Coptic Church. Fifty-five days include the forty days, which were fasted by the Lord Himself, the Passion Week, and the first initial week to prepare us spiritually before this great season of renewal. We fast to commemorate His sufferings on the Holy Cross, for spiritual discipline and our salvation.
Much has been written regarding fasting associated with foods. Yet, fasting is not only abstaining from certain foods. It is a time for us to have our hearts filled with the Holy Spirit. How can our hearts be filled with the Holy Spirit and guarded against all sin?
When we fast we exercise self-control. Fasting provides an occasion to enrich the soul and elevate it to a higher level of spiritual discipline. St Isaac said, "Having control of what we say is better than having control over our bodies, and guarding our hearts against sin is best of all."
A Sanctified Fast
Fasting is indispensible; for it gives victory over Satan just as our Lord Jesus Christ has said, "This kind can come out by nothing but prayer and fasting" (Mark 9:29).
Fasting helps strengthen one's will. For when we train ourselves to say "NO" to the desire to eat, we can then say "NO" to any sin desire. Hence the training to self control.
Fasting also helps control the flesh and its desires and instincts. As St. Paul says, "For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish" (Galatians 5:17). Such a control prepares the spirit to win over the body and to take the lead during the on-going struggle between the body and the spirit. St. Paul depicts this struggle very vividly in his words, "But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified" (1 Corinthians 9:27).
Self-Control: The Virtue Among Virtues
The book of Proverbs 25:28 likens a man without self control to a city broken into and left without walls. This description shows how important self control is, since it acts like a guard to our life. As the verse says, a man without self control is like a city broken into and left without protection, easy for thieves to break into, steal and destroy. Likewise, if we leave our soul and spirit without self control, Satan can easily enter and spoil our lives. Self Control is therefore important and recommended for everyone without exception or exemption regardless of gender, age or position.
Self Control is dominance over all desires. It is one of the most important spiritual virtues that are essential for growth in the knowledge of God, pursuit of the Truth, and attaining of our future destiny.
As human beings, our flesh is driven by its physical desires such as the desire for food, sex; or psychological desires such as the love of fame, praise, to name a few. St. Paul describes the struggle to obtain and maintain these desires as an ongoing war between the flesh and the spirit which also has its desire to obtain what is beyond food and fame. When we allow our desires to control us, we become similar to animals, which are driven by their instinctive desires with neither dominance nor control. On the other hand, when we subject our flesh with all its desires to the leadership of the spirit we will have exercised what we call Self Control which differentiates us human beings from animals.
Mighty Arrows Magazine - Winter 2014 Edition
Word of Wisdom: Subscribe to the Abbey's New Mailing Program
St. Moses Bookstore
Family Ministry Program
A program for learning Christian leadership principles.
Theological Seminary Program
Program Registration deadline: March 15, 2014
Theological Seminary Program - Nashville
An Arabic theological program located in Nashville.
Theological Seminary Boarding Program - Abbey
A 2 year live-in program located at St. Mary and St. Moses Abbey.
Archangel Raphael Ministry (A.R.M.)
A program designed specifically for individuals with special needs.
H.O.P.E. Social Services
A social services program designed to help those in need.
St. Clement Christian Academy
This is a learning community dedicated to meeting the needs of each learner within its walls.
St. Mark Festival Program
This is a spiritual competition among the Coptic Churches doing the same activity world wide.
St. Verena Resource Ministry
(SVRM) Professionals networking together to make a difference and provide resources to our Coptic community. To make a request or to volunteer as a consultant.
TIPS: Search for Job & Education Opportunities
S.V.R.M./H.O.P.E. 2nd Annual Conference & Banquet
May 2-3, 2014
more info coming soon
Extreme Family Makeover Coptic Edition
May 9-11, 2014
GA: Jun 13-15, 2014
TX: Nov 14-16, 2014
FL: Jan 9-11, 2015
Sudan Mission Experience Trip 2014
June 9-21, 2014
2014 Pilgrimage to the Balkans
July 14-26, 2014
July 23-27, 2014
more info coming soon
Evangelism & Apologetics Conference
Aug 1-3, 2014
more info coming soon