Orthodox Church of the Mother of God

Joy of all the Sorrowful - Mays Landing, NJ (f. 1966)

Brief Catechism

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1. Blessed are the poor in spirit; for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven.

To be poor in spirit is to have a spiritual conviction that we have nothing of our own, nothing but what God bestows upon us, and that we can do nothing without God's help and grace, thus counting ourselves as nothing, and in all throwing ourselves upon the mercy of God; spiritual poverty is humility. (St. John Chr. Hom. Mat. XV.)

2. Blessed are they that mourn; for they shall be comforted.

By the word "mourn" is meant this precept: Sorrow and contrition of heart, with unfeigned tears, for that we so imperfectly and unworthily serve the Lord, or even rather deserve His anger by our sins. For godly sorrow worketh repentance unto salvation not to be repented of; but the sorrow of this world worketh death. (2 Cor. VII:10.)

3. Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.

Meekness is quiet disposition of spirit, joined with care neither to offend any man, nor be offended at any think one's self. To never murmur against God, nor even against men, when anything falls out against our wishes, nor give way to anger, nor set ourselves up.

4. Blessed are they that hunger and thirst for righteousness; for they shall be filled.

The word "righteousness" may stand for every virtue, which the Christian ought to desire even as his meat and drink and the justification of guilty man through; race and faith in Jesus Christ.

5. Blessed are the merciful; for they shall obtain mercy.

The works of mercy are corporal and spiritual. To obtain mercy is understood to be delivered from everlasting, condemnation for sin at God's Judgment.

6. Blessed are the pure in heart; for they shall see God.

Purity of heart is attained by constant and strict watchfulness over oneself, driving away from the heart every unlawful wish and thought, and every affection for earthly things, and ever keeping in heart the remembrance of God and our Lord Jesus Christ with faith and charity.

7. Blessed are the peacemakers; for they will be called the sons of God.

We must not only keep peace but as well to make peace.

8. Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake; for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.

The eighth precept for blessedness requires love for righteousness, constancy and firmness in virtue, fortitude and patience, when one is subjected to calamity or danger for refusing to betray truth and virtue.

9. Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you and persecute you, and shall say all matter of evil against you falsely for My sake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad; for great is your reward in Heaven.

The ninth precept for blessedness requires that they who would be blessed must be ready to take with joy reproach, suffering, and death itself, for the true Orthodox Christian Faith. The course required by this precept is the course of Martyrdom, and a great Reward in Heaven is promised by the Lord for Martyrdom for the Faith.

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