18th Annual Ss. Cyril & Methodius Lecture

The 18th Annual Saints Cyril and Methodius Lecture will take place at 7:00 pm on May 16, 2018

Guest Speaker: Archbishop Alexander (Golitzin)

Topic: The Place of the Presence of God: Aphrahat of Persia’s Portrait of the Christian Holy Man

Location: St. John Byzantine Catholic Cathedral Center, 210 Greentree Road, Munhall, PA

Aphrahat the Persian sage is the earliest writer in Christian Syriac of whom we have proof. Writing in the 330s and 340s in the vicinity of modern Iraqi Kurdistan, his works are notable for their relative freedom from the lexicon and thought world of Greek philosophy; neither does he appear to know any prominent, pre-Nicene Church Fathers. Although unacquainted with Greek and Latin patristic literature, Aphrahat clearly possessed considerable authority in the Church of the Persian Empire. Archbishop Alexander will examine the portrait Aphrahat paints of the holy man in his fourteenth Demonstration. The idea of transformation, of becoming divine, is clearly central to Aphrahat. While the language of the Greek Fathers’ theosis is absent, he phrases it in an idiom much more akin to that of Second Temple apocalypses, and of the later Jewish Ezekial chariot-throne mystics of whom he was a likely contemporary.

Archbishop Alexander was born in Burbank, CA in 1948 and raised attending Saint Innocent Orthodox Church. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from the University of California at Berkeley and a Master of Divinity degree from Saint Vladimir’s Seminary. He pursued doctoral studies at Oxford University in England under His Eminence, Metropolitan Kallistos [Ware]. During this time, he also spent two years in Greece, including one year at Simonos Petras Monastery on Mount Athos. After receiving his D.Phil., Archbishop Alexander returned to the U.S. He was ordained to the diaconate in 1982 and to the priesthood two years later. In 1986, he was tonsured to monastic orders. He served O.C.A. missions in
northern California and headed the Diocese of the West’s mission committee. From 1989 to 2012, Archbishop Alexander taught in the Theology Department at Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. In May 2012 he was consecrated Bishop of the Bulgarian Diocese of the Orthodox Church in America and in 2016 additionally was named as Bishop of the Diocese of the South. In 2017 he was elevated to the rank of Archbishop.

The annual lecture series is sponsored by the Byzantine Catholic Seminary of Ss. Cyril and Methodius.

This event is FREE but due to space limitations registration is required by April 30th.

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