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Letters From Monk Cosmas  A compilation of letters written by Monk Cosmas, who currently resides at the Monastery of St. John of Shanghai & San Francisco in Manton, California. These letters were originally written for spiritual friends in prison. Now, he is sharing them with us so that others might benefit from their insight and wisdom.
An UpWord Glance is a weekly article of simple stories meant to uplift and provoke thought. If something touches you, we would love to hear back from you. Hope you enjoy them…Just click on the image or date/title for the full article. By your prayers…Fr. Stephen Powley

A Life Transformed

Posted by on Jul 24, 2013 in articles, News, testimonials | 2 comments

A Life Transformed

After 15 years in federal prison—including 22 hour-a-day lockdowns at Supermax facilities—Clark Porter achieved what was once unimaginable: a scholarship to Washington University, two university degrees, a full-time position with the US District Court, and a stable family life. And that’s not even the most incredible part of the story. Fr. Stephen Powley can laugh about it now. At the time, his early encounters with Clark Porter weren’t funny. Fr. Stephen was a prison chaplain; Clark was serving a sentence for robbing a federal post...

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Life in Prison: A Lesson of Faith

Posted by on Jun 21, 2013 in articles, News, testimonials | 6 comments

Life in Prison: A Lesson of Faith

Several months ago, His Eminence Metropolitan Gerasimos of San Francisco received an unexpected letter. It was from four Orthodox men serving life sentences in a “concrete Jericho”—a maximum security prison in California—asking for the “unthinkable”: His Eminence to visit and bless the prison. “Struck by the intensity of their words,” he visited the men during Great Lent, talking and praying with them and offering them Holy Eucharist. Afterward, His Eminence sent a thoughtful reflection to OCPM, which...

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The Priesthood and Prison Ministry

Posted by on Jun 6, 2012 in articles | 0 comments

The Priesthood and Prison Ministry

by: Father Emmanuel Mantzouris Ephesians 5:29-30 – “For no man ever hates his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, as Christ does the church, because we are members of his body.” This familiar verse is a portion of the pastoral epistle of Saint Paul to the Christian community of Ephesus.  Read at the Holy Sacrament of Marriage, at first glance, it may seem hardly applicable to prison ministry.  However, in preparation to write this article on the Priesthood and Prison Ministry, this portion of the epistles came to mind. It is in...

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Why Minister to People in Prison?

Posted by on Jun 6, 2012 in articles | 0 comments

Why Minister to People in Prison?

Our life in this world is a fierce and violent spiritual war. As St. Paul says, we struggle not “against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.” [1] Not only are we participants in this warfare, we are also its prize.  We are the crown of God’s creation, created in His image and likeness, the only creature created for the sole purpose of glorifying God by having fellowship with Him. So the devil, being a...

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