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This Sunday, October 15, 2023, is known as the Sunday of the Church Fathers, which is celebrated on the second or third Sunday of October and is the affirmation of icon veneration of the Seventh Ecumenical Council, designated on October 11th or the first Sunday thereafter. The readings for this Sunday focus on Abraham and Moses leading their people by God’s authority, power and directives. The Gospel reading for this Sunday is from the Evangelist Luke 8:4-15, entitled, “The Parable of the Sower”, in which it speaks about the four types of ground that the sower’s seed fell on and the respective results.

We are all familiar with this story and can relate as to why this gospel is read on the Sunday of the Fathers. Primarily it is because the Church Fathers by, “giving their time to doing good deeds” and, “providing for real needs,” they were not only receptive to God’s Word but were also Sowers of the Word for others.

You see Spiritual Fathers are valuable as experienced guides in the Christian life. They are called “Fathers” because they gave birth to spiritual sons and daughters in Christ, both by introducing them to the new life in Christ and guiding them toward spiritual maturity. They do not take the place of God, our Father in Heaven, nor the place of Christ, our true Leader; rather, having themselves found the way to the Father through the Son, they guide others in the same way which is narrow and difficult, being enabled by the power of the Holy Spirit.

So with great joy let us celebrate this Feast of the Church commemorating the Fathers of the Seventh Ecumenical Council.

Seventh Ecumenical Council