Father Moses Berry: From Hippie Bad-Boy Cool-Cat to Orthodox Priest

by Irene Archos You wouldn’t suspect that the jovial Orthodox priest who carries the gold chalise with such reverence from behind the iconostasis of “Mother of Unexpected Joy” church was once a drug dealing, rambling hippie and coffee-house owner with his own underground band, not to mention an illegitimate descendent of Nathaniel Boone, the son of the legendary American hero Daniel Boone.  Father Moses Berry, who is by now in his 60s, is still a rolling ball of fire, overflowing with spontaneous exuberance.  He bounces from one story to another as he moves from one section of the Ozarks Afro-American Heritage Museum he founded in his native … [Read more...]

Off the Side Roads onto the Illumined Path

by Michael Fiocca The Way We Are Meant to Be “The person who loves God values knowledge of God more than anything created by God, and pursues such knowledge ardently and ceaselessly.” -Saint Maximos the Confessor When we speak of something as being generic, it often stirs up thoughts of a product being “mediocre” or “less reliable.” I admit that I find my generic paper-towels to be less easy to rip, my generic bread crumbs to require some more spices, and my generic phone charger to burn out too quickly. In the same way, I found my generic form of faith and spirituality to be quickly running dry and barren. Like a brand name, it did … [Read more...]

I was a Catholic Priest: The Story of Fr. John Tanveer

by Fr. John Tanveer I was a Catholic priest. I was waiting for the opportunity to convert to Orthodoxy for fifteen years, and the opportunity to become an Orthodox priest - three more years. The Lord felt my desire. I belonged to the Catholic community and entered the seminary in 1974, and four years later I continued my studies at another institute, studied Holy Scripture, church and civil law, church history and ethics for six more years. I remember how I prayed: "Lord, you are my Father, if I am worthy to be a priest, Your servant, please grant me the courage to serve You and Your people." My journey to Orthodoxy began in 1990. … [Read more...]

Davenport, IL Priest Moves Fast to Join Russian Orthodox Church

After 15 years as an Anglican priest, including six years as the rector of Trinity Church in Rock Island, the Rev. Thomas Janikowski is converting to Russian Orthodoxy.By the time he and his wife, Shelly, get back from a New York trip, he will be an ordained deacon and priest in the Russian Orthodox church’s Western Rite Communities. He will celebrate the Liturgy of St. Gregory the Great on Sunday as a fully ordained priest of the St. Athanasius parish at 228 W. 15th St., Davenport. Sunday Matins will be sung at 8:15 a.m. with a Divine Liturgy at 9 followed by food and fellowship. The church — once a tattoo parlor named “Joe’s Garage” — is … [Read more...]