Tending the Garden of The Heart


Tending The Garden of The Heart-How to apply The Holy Tradition To Your Life

The heart itself is only a small vessel, yet dragons are there, and lions, there are poisonous beasts, and all the treasures of evil, there are rough and uneven roads, there are precipes; but there too is God and the angels, life is there, and the Kingdom, there too is light, and there the apostles and heavenly cities, and treasures of grace. All things lie within that little space.

Macarius of Egypt

Let’s make a firm resolve to go deeper in our Faith. Into our hearts this year. Let’s kick start a renewal. But how do I do this?

Get into Holy Scripture, and get it into you.

  1. Orthodox Study Bible- read 20 minutes per day
  2. Orthodox Daily Scripture Readings


Sign up with email. An email will arrive each morning with the reading of the day, Fr. Alex reads the sections, make comments, and educates you about the Holy Scriptures. My favorite.

Go to https://www.oca.org/readings  click on daily Scripture readings

Use our church calendar from St. Tikhon’s

Get free Bible software to help study



Read or listen to the lives of the Saints.

  1. https://patristicnectar.org/

You can listen at the website, but, it is better to scroll all the way down on the website and click on Free App. Follow the directions and put the app on your phone.

  1. The Prologue:


  1. Use our library to borrow a book
  2. https://www.oca.org/saints/lives

Begin or renew a prayer rule-try Abbot Sergius:

Get or begin to use a prayer book, like this:

Learn more about our Faith: Books, podcasts, videos. Here are some options:

  1. https://www.youtube.com/@AncientFaithMinistries
  2. https://www.youtube.com/@ProtectingVeil
  3. https://www.youtube.com/@Trisagionfilms
  4. https://www.youtube.com/@PatristicNectarFilms
  5. https://www.youtube.com/@Theoria
  6. https://www.youtube.com/@vashonmonks
  7. https://www.youtube.com/@AncientFaithMinistries/podcasts

Attend a class: “Becoming Orthodox”, begins on January 25 at 6 pm.

Read a good introduction book:

Find a place to serve in the parish, and in the community at large.

Begin to give sacrificially to the parish.

Attend more services.

Move closer to the church.

Build silence into your life.

Learn to live a more simple life.

Begin the practice of gratefulness and thanksgiving to God.

Practice regular visits with the priest at confession.

Tend your heart and soul as you would a garden.

Treat your heart/soul better than your body.

 If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory. Colossians 3:1-4

Icon Visit and Retreat-Archimandrite Sergius


On the weekend of February 10-12, Archimandrite Fr. Sergius traveled from St. Tikhon’s Orthodox Monastery in PA with the miraculous icon of St.Anna. A large crowd sang with us and then were anointed with oil and venerated the icon, along with the relics of Sts. Joachim and Anna, plus a small piece of the Robe of The Theotokos.

On Saturday we brought the icon to Holy Spirit Orthodox Church and after greeting St. Anna, Fr. Sergius led two wonderful talks on learning to pray.

On Sunday, Archimandrite Sergius served with Fr. Stephen and Fr. Brendan and gave the homily.

All were greatly blessed by the presence of the Saints and benefited greatly from the teaching of Fr. Sergius. The talks are available on the parish Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/hsocparish/