The recently canonized, Saint Sophrony of England is one of the greatest theological events of our generation. His word brings the Light of eternity to our own age and to our particular problems with powerful immediacy. Archimandrite Zacharias acted as one of St. Sophrony’s closest disciples until the saint’s repose in 1993 and now serves as one of the most articulate voices in the act of revealing the infinite treasure that was St. Sophrony, himself an inheritor of the riches of St. Silouan, of whom he was himself a disciple.
In Christ, Our Way and Our Life, Arch. Zacharias presents a systematic overview of St. Sophrony’s inspired theology. He explores those themes that define his writing: The hypostatic principle in the Holy Trinity and in human nature, the self-emptying of the Lord, the stages of spiritual life and the withdrawal of grace, monasticism and spiritual fatherhood, and prayer—pure prayer, prayer for the world, and the prayer of the Divine Liturgy. This volume is the definitive guide for both the scholar as well as for all who wishes to be encouraged by Saint Sophrony’ striking vision of God and man.
This book is based on my doctoral thesis, entitled The Actualisation of the Hypostatic Principle in the Theology of Archimandrite Sophrony, which was submitted at the Faculty of Theology of the University of Thessalonica in 1998. I have wanted since then to proceed to a more complete presentation of Fr Sophrony’s teaching. Perhaps even now I have not succeeded fully in this aim, but I have tried at least to set out the basic themes of his theology.
I alone am responsible for any imperfections or omissions apparent in this book. For whatever good it may contain, the praise belongs to my ever-memorable Staretz, who is my life’s greatest benefactor. Above all, it is to our Lord Jesus Christ, who manifested to us in its perfection the Pattern, the Model, the Length, and Depth, and Height, of the Person of the Father, that glory is due unto all ages.
Note on the English edition
The English translation of my book has provided an opportunity, for which I am grateful, to amplify my text by the addition of phrases and notes which further explain the meaning and thus render it accessible even for those without a theological background. The same purpose lies behind the re-ordering of a few paragraphs.
 The theological term ‘hypostasis’ from which this word is derived is more fully explained throughout the book. See especially Chapter 1.
b. The primordial glory of man
c. The delusion of an impersonal absolute
b. The way of thy commandments
c. Love – to the point of self-hatred
c. The grace of mindfulness of death
d. Spiritual mourning and tears
e. The despair which is pleasing to God
b. When grace is withdrawn
c. Grace is regained
d. Knowing the way
b. Fidelity to the monastic vows heals the estrangement brought about by original sin
c. Spiritual fatherhood as a ministry of between man and God
b. The practice of the Jesus Prayer
c. Inner prayer
d. The struggle against the imagination
b. Ontological regeneration
c. The vision of uncreated Light
d. ‘Ontological’ repentance inspires a twofold vision
e. Ascetic humility and divine humility
f. The ontological content of the person: freedom for self-determination
b. Pure prayer
c. Prayer for the whole world as the manifestation of the hypostatic principle
d. Love for one’s enemies as a criterion of truth
Index of Scriptural References
Index of Names and Subjects