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How would you interpret the words of the apostle Paul “Fathers do not embitter your children”?
Dear Father Andrey, your blessing. I am a mother of two. My younger son is 7 and he is autistic. I have a husband but we are not married in church. I go to church with the kids often and have them partake of the Holy Eucharist, although it’s difficult for the younger son. Father, how does the Church view autism? Why are these kids even born? Man is made in the image and likeness of God, isn’t he? Essentially, what a human being must do here on earth is to get to know God and get closer to him. My child does not say anything and does not understand anything. Please tell us what to do.
Your blessing, Father. What should I do: my husband has become a priest but I’m not the right kind of a person to be a matushka (a priest’s wife — translator’s note), unfortunately. I’m really bothered about that because I’m not a quiet, meek, and God-fearing girl. I’m a regular kind of woman who has led a fairly secular life. I didn’t have much of a religious upbringing. I have a burden of grave sins in the past: I had had affairs before I met my husband, and I’m not an example to follow even today: I often shout, quarrel, and get annoyed. I get upset easily, I can’t tolerate anything at all. I feel that my soul is seriously ill. I didn’t marry for love: I was just feeling lonely. Why did God send me a seminarian and a son of a priest who decided to follow in his father’s footsteps?
Father Andrey, please tell me how to save my child. My daughter is 11. She’s lost interest in God and doesn’t want to go to church. Instead, she spends her days glued to her smartphone, and she is furious if I attempt to take it away. When she was younger, I was teaching my daughter to love God. We went to church, confessed and took communion often. I have always sheltered her from evil. Now she watches films with foul and angry words and says that they’re “cool”. How can I save my daughter?
My grandmother has a difficult and tough temper, plus her old age has made her more difficult to deal with. I have a lot of grudges against her. What can I do about it? I can't forgive her or apologize!
Children make noise in church… What do I do?
Ask a priest
The Optina Monastery is a famous stauropegion of the Russian Orthodox Church, located in the Kaluga region. A stauropegion is a church or monastery exempt from the jurisdiction of the local bishop and directly subject to the highest authority…
Sometimes, the magnitude of human suffering, hardship, and pain can throw us into despair. But let remind ourselves that people in worse situations have come out of them successfully, and emerged stronger than before.