"The glory of God is man fully alive, and the life of man is the vision of God." -St Irenaeus of Lyon

The Two Altars of the Church

Blogger’s note: This quote has been one of the most beneficial for me as I consider the Church and poverty.

Besides the offering at the Divine Liturgy we have another altar, which is the altar of the poor.  You can find this altar everywhere, even in alleys and streets.  To this altar we are called to bring our offering, a holy sacrifice to God.  Herein lies our priestly office, as we, like the officiating priest in the Liturgy, involve the Spirit on the altar of the poor, not by words of mouth, but by deeds that speak louder than words.  The Spirit hovers above the altar of the poor.  The Lord’s Body is laid thereupon as there is no wound in this world that He does not bear in His Body.  There is no blood that is shed which He does not share.  In this sense when we give to the poor we give unto Him who descends to us from heaven.

-St John Chrysostom


2 responses

  1. Curious if you know the work that this quote comes from …

    10 July 2011 at 8:16 pm

    • I found it in a secondary source Daily Meditations and Prayers for the Christmas Advent Fast and Epiphany by Presbytera Emily Harakas and Father Anthony Coniaris, but I don’t have any idea as to the original document.

      10 July 2011 at 8:21 pm

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