2022 A Message From the Abbess
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A MESSAGE FROM ABBESS MELANIA (2022)
Fr. Anthony Roeber (2022)
Fr. Anthony Roeber (2022)
Fr. Anthony Roeber (2022)
Service of the Great Blessing of the Waters (2022)
Service of the Great Blessing of the Waters (2022)
Service of the Great Blessing of the Waters (2022)
Blessing the Napa River (2022)
Blessing the Napa River (2022)
Blessing the Napa River (2022)

January 6 - The Great Feast of The Theophany of Our Lord

One of the many blessings of living here at the monastery is having the Napa River essentially in our backyard.  That’s especially lovely on Theophany, when we just have to go to the edge of our property to do the outdoor blessing of the waters.  This year, the river was flowing swiftly, and it was such a beautiful visual assurance that God rejoices to bless His creation – and creation rejoices receiving it.  As we go through this coming year, may God grant us to participate in His work of blessing His creation and may we rejoice to do so!

The Return of the Prodigal Son
The Return of the Prodigal Son
The Return of the Prodigal Son

A MESSAGE FROM ABBESS MELANIA
Monday, March 7, 2022 - Beginning of Great Lent

One of the most beautiful services of the Church Year is Forgiveness Vespers, with which we start Lent. 

The deeper we go into our own hearts, the more we realize how badly we need to forgive and to be forgiven.  So, it is an ever more profound joy to start Lent by humbly asking forgiveness for our own sins (not least of which are our resentments against others’ sins!) and forgiving our fellows.

Asking your forgiveness and may we all reach Pascha together!

Mother Melania

 

 

Credit: Icon of The Return of the Prodigal Son, courtesy of OCA.org.

A MESSAGE FROM ABBESS MELANIA
Sunday, April 3, 2022 - Sunday of St. John Climacus

Today we commemorate St. John of the Ladder (St. John Climacus) and remind ourselves of his book The Ladder of Divine Ascent.  It’s definitely a challenging book.  You don’t have to go very far before you see how very far you have to go (and sometimes you find out that you’d been going DOWN the ladder instead of UP!)  But it is also an encouraging book.  One recurring theme occurs after St. John has mentioned some virtue that most of us (well, me, anyway) are woefully short on.  Then, he’ll say “Some people have this by nature, but they don’t receive a reward.”  So, if your journey through Lent is showing you all the virtues you DON’T have, take heart.  If you keep striving to repent and move towards Christ, you will join the ranks of those who win the crown!

 

Credit: Icon of The Ladder of Divine Ascent, courtesy of OCA.org.

Palm Sunday 2022
Palm Sunday 2022
Palm Sunday 2022
A MESSAGE FROM ABBESS MELANIA
Sunday, April 17, 2022 - Palm Sunday
 
Today the grace of the Holy Spirit has gathered us together, and we all take up Thy Cross and say: Blessed is He that comes in the Name of the Lord; Hosanna in the highest.
 
This verse is sung at least five times in the Palm Sunday vigil. Obviously, we’re supposed to pay attention to it! So, here are a few things to consider.
1. We aren’t lone rangers. Nor have we gathered ourselves.
2. Rather, the Holy Spirit brings us together
a. In order to take up Christ’s Cross
b. To bless Christ
c. To cry Hosanna to Him
3. Hosanna is both a plea for deliverance (save now, or save please) and a shout of joy that God HAS delivered us
 
So, as we celebrate Palm Sunday and begin the journey into Holy Week, let’s join together to glorify the One Who took up His cross by taking up our own. And whatever trials we must endure, may we cry Hosanna to the One Who has saved us and all creation to the uttermost.
HOLY PASCHA: The Resurrection of Our Lord
HOLY PASCHA: The Resurrection of Our Lord
HOLY PASCHA: The Resurrection of Our Lord
A MESSAGE FROM ABBESS MELANIA
Sunday, April 24, 2022 - Great and Holy Pascha

Christ is risen!

This is the day of resurrection. Let us be illumined by the feast. Let us embrace each other. Let us call "brothers" even those that hate us, and forgive all by the resurrection, and so let us cry:

Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death, and upon those in the tomb bestowing life!


It always grabs my attention that the Paschal verses end with a call to forgive all by the resurrection and THEN cry “Christ is risen ...”  The longer I live, the more I realize how incapable I am of forgiving others fully - EXCEPT by the love and power of the Resurrected Christ.  And until I’m willing to do that – or at least begin the process – how can I think that I am really celebrating Christ’s Resurrection!  So, may we all forgive each other by Christ’s Resurrection and cry with pure hearts, “Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death, and upon those in the tomb bestowing life!”

Credit: Icon of The Resurrection of Our Lord, courtesy of OCA.org.

Great Feast of The Ascension of Our Lord
Great Feast of The Ascension of Our Lord
Great Feast of The Ascension of Our Lord
A MESSAGE FROM ABBESS MELANIA
Thursday, June 2, 2022 - Great Feast of the Ascension of Our Lord
 

When Thou hadst fulfilled the dispensation for our sake,
and united earth to heaven,
Thou didst ascend in glory, O Christ our God,
not being parted from those who love Thee,
but remaining with them and crying://
“I am with you, and there is no one against you!”
(Kontakion of Ascension)

How did Christ unite earth to heaven? By coming down to earth and sharing in our humanity in all its limitations and brokenness (except sin). Then dying our death and rising into incorruptible Life. Then seating our human nature with Himself at the right hand of His Father.

Amazing as that it, we might not feel that it has anything to do with us. But the same Jesus Who rose from the dead and seated us with Himself at His Father’s right hand, cries to those who love Him “I am with you, and there is no one against you.” And how do we know we love Him? Christ Himself tells us “If you love me, keep my commandments.” So, let us keep His commandments and repent when we fail. Then, no matter what our circumstances, we can struggle valiantly and joyfully, knowing ever more deeply that He is with us and indeed no one can prevail against us.

Credit: Icon of The Ascension of Our Lord, courtesy of OCA.org.

Holy Pentecost
Holy Pentecost
Holy Pentecost
A MESSAGE FROM ABBESS MELANIA
Sunday, June 12, 2022 - Great Feast of Holy Pentecost
 
In his sermon today, Fr. Constantine told the story of a priest who was always praying to be filled with the Holy Spirit.  When his wife asked him why he was constantly praying that prayer, he answered “Because I leak.”
 
That’s also a large part of why we pray the kneeling prayers of Pentecost every year.  We all leak.  But God knew that before He said “Let there be light!”  And He still created us.  Christ still died and rose for us.  And the Holy Spirit descended upon us.  And so, once again, it is time to ask the Holy Spirit to fill us again.  And maybe, just maybe, we’ll be willing to let Him fix the leaks!

 

 

 

Credit: Icon of Holy Pentecost, courtesy of OCA.org.

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Holy Assumption Monastery
1519 Washington St, Calistoga, CA 94515

(707) 942-6244