Father’s Duties | daily mail

Entitled “Confession and Communion” of Greek Orthodox Archbishop and Metropolitan Andrei of Cluj, one of the most important works of Orthodox theology in Romania since the fall of the Iron Curtain has finally become available in German.

supreme love

The 250-page monograph was translated and published by Protestant priest Jürgen Henkel as part of the book series “The German-Roman Theological Library” that he started. Why is this reading also recommended for Western Christians, especially Latin Christians? Because, contrary to what the title suggests, this work deals with the sacraments of the Eastern Church. The book presents a wealth of considerations which, in the case of the Orthodox theologian, rest naturally on the broad foundation of the early and early Church Fathers. Parents are also widely said, just as the noble brocade fabric is woven with only golden threads.

The bishop divided his study into three main parts with the most obvious subtitle “Pasoral Care and Life Support by Spiritual Fathers in the Orthodox Practice of the Faith”: in the first part he studies penance, which is also used in Orthodox holy favour. Reconciliation applies as well as the renewal of the whole community, in the middle part, the spiritual father who donates this sacrament and its ideal features as well as the basic requirements that he must bring with him as a spiritual father, and in the third part it concerns the spiritual fathers. The spiritual childhood of the disciple. At the beginning of his remarks, even before the actual implementation of penance and confession, there is the Holy Trinity and communion with God, according to which the Most Holy Trinity is the supreme temple of love and without whose presence it would not be possible for him. I absolutely love being there to explain to the world.

Consequences of original sin

Based on these considerations, the author sees sin as the destruction of communion with God and with each other. Returns to the roots: to original sin and its consequences. This is followed by consideration of the so-called mortal sins in the Latin Church. Bishop calls them “emotions.” The Orthodox Church considers itself an institution and as a hospital for the sick soul. Like the Latin Church, it restores communion with God and our fellow human beings through the sacrament of confession. According to the Orthodox tradition, the confession of the believer is made to the priest and before the icon of Christ in a special corner of the church, since the priest testifies only what the penitent must confess to Christ.

The in-depth reflections on the nature of confession and its constituent element are especially enriching, because in these subchapters the interested reader learns details about how the confessor, that is, the priest, deals with the penitent and how the penitent should deal with the penitent. Good confession. Regarding the implementation of penance and its own practice, the author quotes from Molitfelnic, where Euchologion is called in Romanian, according to which, among other things, penance is more moderate if the believer is under 30 years old and depends on what days his fasting under the week is still observed : In addition to Wednesday and Friday, Monday will also be, and this fast is called the Angel Fast in honor of the holy angels.

Priest’s Duties

The fact that this is only one side of the coin, and that the believer must also be accompanied by an experienced spiritual father, excellent in many respects: the priest in terms of his priesthood, morals, and intellectual abilities, is made clear in the second part of this document. In another subsection he refers to important duties of a priest: among them the duty to pray for his spiritual children and the duty to love them, and even the duty to bear the burdens of a disciple.

But even the most inspiring and earnest Godfather can of course do nothing if the spiritual child does not have a certain access. This is what the third part is about. What is discipleship, what is spiritual childhood? What are the duties of the student? The topics of search, obedience, love, and prayer for a spiritual father are covered in separate subchapters.

This rightly lauded work of the Roman Orthodox bishop is approximated by a glossary, biblical index, bibliography, and translator’s notes.


Bishop André de Kluge, Maramures and Slag: Confession and Communion.
Pastoral care and life support by spiritual fathers in the orthodox practice of the faith.
Translated from Romanian by Jürgen Henkel.
Schiller Verlag Bonn / Sibiu, 2021, ISBN 978-3-946954-67-5, EUR 24, 90

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