Sunday, February 6, 2011

Convicting and Judging

"If you want to be a true, zealous son of the Orthodox Church, you must do so by the fulfillment of the commandments of the Gospel toward your neighbor. Do not dare to convict him. Do not dare to teach him. Do not dare to condemn or reproach him. To correct your neighbor in this way is not an act of faith, but of foolish zeal, of prelest and pride. Abba Poemen the Great was asked, "What is faith?" The great man replied that faith consists in always remaining in humility and showing mercy to one's neighbor, forgiving them all their discourtesies, offenses and sins. Foolish zealots make out that their faith is the prime cause of their zeal, but true faith and true zeal is humility and mercy toward all. Let us leave the work of convicting and judging people on the persons whose shoulders is laid the responsibility to rule and judge their brethren."

- Saint Ignatius Brianchaninov