TITHES and OFFERINGS
- TITHES and OFFERINGS, 1 Very Rev Dr Michael Protopopov OAM
Dean of the Churches in the State of Victoria
THIS MONTH, we enter the Holy and Great Lent, a time when, among other spiritual disciplines, we apply ourselves more especially to almsgiving. It seems a good time then to introduce the whole subject of our financial commitment to the Church and her ministry. Below, with permission, we print one of the talks given at the 42nd Annual Russian Orthodox Youth Conference of the Australia - New Zealand Diocese of ROCA, held in Adelaide, 2006. The article is addressed to young people and is set in a particularly Russian context, but we believe that it will be helpful for all Orthodox Christians, of any age or any cultural background.
MANYYOUNG PEOPLE, having heard the account of Our Lord overturning the tables of the money changers and driving them from the Temple in Jerusalem,1 believe that money has no place in the life of the Church. This belief is reinforced by such quotations as: Money is the root of all evil2 A rich man shall find it almost impossible to enter the Kingdom of Heaven3 etc.
TRIP TO AUSTRALIA, 1 AS REPORTED in previous issues, I was invited to speak at the 42nd Annual Russian Orthodox Youth Conference of the Australia - New Zealand Diocese of ROCA, held in Adelaide. I flew from Heathrow on 13th December and stayed a couple of days in Singapore as the guest of Archimandrite Daniel (Toyne) of the Holy Resurrection Greek Orthodox Church (OEc.Pat.) there. I was met at the airport by Fr Daniel and by Paul and Audrey Lee, the parents of Benedict who used to attend church here. The Lees kindly took us out for a meal, and then my plan to have a rest on the journey were scuppered by Fr Daniel, who kept me up talking to four in the morning! Next day, we visited a disused church which Fr Daniel hopes to get for his parish, who are out-growing their present house chapel. Then we visited the exceedingly beautiful Botanical Gardens before meeting up with Paul Lee again and eating, apparently
in my honour, at the British Club. Mr Lee then drove us round town to see the city.
I flew on to Australia, arriving in Sydney late on Saturday night, where to my surprise the driver meeting me at the airport was Archbishop Hilarion himself. He made the perfect host. Despite his exalted rank, he prepared meals at the church house, made sure I had everything I needed, arranged everything for the whole trip, and, to my embarrassment, even did my laundry!
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