Our MTh scholars - Printable Version
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Our MTh scholars - Fr Gregory - 09-09-2011 08:01 AM
I must congratulate the three British Orthodox Readers (James Anthony Kelly, Antony Paul Holland,and Daniel Malyon) from our Southampton Congregation who are currently studying for their M.Th. in Orthodox Studies at the University of Winchester, and who recently attended the Annual Conference of the Orthodox Theological Research Forum held at Winchester University.
Their commitment to enhancing their understanding of the Orthodox Faith through formal academic study (as sometimes burdensome and inevitably expensive as that will be) and their enthusiastic participation in scholarly conferences is important for them, for the congregations they serve and for the British Orthodox Church.
Let us keep them in our prayers and offer to them such support as we can!
We need scholars just as we need pastors (preferably we need those who are both!).
- DanielM - 09-09-2011 11:27 PM
Thank you Father Gregory.
I will certainly endevour to pass on the knowledge gained on this course to our congregations in order to benefit their understanding of the rich and beautiful traditions of the Orthodox faith.
Please keep us in your prayers,
- Antony-Paul - 10-09-2011 06:51 PM
Dear Father Gregory,
Thank you for your kind words of support for our little group of students. We are privileged to be able to attend this course, which although perhaps somewhat Byzantine biased nevertheless will give us a good grounding in Orthodox studies (with the possible exception of Christology).
We shall do our best to convey this knowledge to our brothers and sisters over the coming years.
Please pray for us, we have a lot of work to do.
- vrc - 07-11-2011 08:00 AM
I would like to hear of the experiences of those who attended: -
if their spiritual experiences deepened during this time;
if they learned a different intellectual grasp of anything;
if they learned to see or feel anything differently;
how they viewed their taste of monastic life in relation to more experiencd monks;
- Antony-Paul - 07-11-2011 03:05 PM
Good to hear from you - I hope all is going well for you.
You have set quite a task! However, in brief my own thoughts are as follows.
Taking the second and third points, inevitably there has been some intellectual development which in turn offers opportunities for a fresh view of certain issues. That, after all, is one of the main reasons for undertaking the course. I wanted to learn more about Orthodoxy, the masters itself is a secondary consideration for me.
As for the monastic and spiritual experience, this has been rewarding. With a background of RCC monasticism it was particularly interesting to observe the distinct character of the OC cenobitic life. This inevitably included their spiritual practices which were both helpful and uplifting. The visit itself was particularly prayerful and spiritually refreshing, and we are looking into whether we might have a brief retreat there next year for our Solent churches.
I recognise that this is a very generalised response. However, if you have any specific queries I am happy to try to focus on them if you let me know. If it is relevant to you, checkout the website for Winchester University, where I think you will find course outlines etc.
- DanielM - 13-11-2011 11:36 PM
I feel that doing the course has really developed my understanding of the course on a scholarly level and has changed my perceptions in a spiritual level because instead of just making assumptions we are told to find evidence to back them up. This has helped me to understand my faith on a differn level since instead of just accepting things I am now looking to justify them to myself.
The monastery really opened my eyes to Orthodox monasticism. As someone that has never been to an Orthodox monastery before I was able to meet and interract with the monks and nuns on a personal level, such as doing the washing up with Fr Andrew and him telling me how he had decided to become a monk. The general feel of the place was not this strict and somewhat draconian atmosphere that you see in hollywood monasteries but a place where people lived for each other out of love, not law. It was generally brilliant.
- vrc - 14-11-2011 08:46 AM
sounds like you had a very interesting and memorable experience.
I like what you say about not making assumptions, and finding evidence for your view.
And I love the bit about how the washing up became a window into how Fr. Andrew became a monk. Funny how we can utilise daily chores!
Thank you for your response - it really coloured it in for me.