About Helen and St. Constantine
St. Helen was born at Drepanum (Helenopolis) in Asia Minor. Married to Constantius Chlorus, their son St. Constantine the Great, was born in 274. Helen & Constantius were divorced in 294.
Constantine out of great honor and respect, granted his mother the imperial title “Augusta,” after he became emperor,
St. Constantine issued the Edict of Milan in 313 when he became the sole ruler of the Western Roman Empire. This guaranteed religious tolerance for Christians. It is believed that St. Helen, who was a Christian, may have influenced him in this decision. He also extended the provisions of the Edict of Milan to the Eastern half of the Empire. Christians could finally practice their faith without fear after three hundred years of persecution.
It is said that there are more churches than people in the village of Vothonas, where we were staying. This is easy to believe as one walks through the town. We passed more churches than we could count. Consequently, the cave house we were renting was across the street from what is known as “The Big Church”.
On the morning of May 21, 2017, while lounging, we heard what sounded like gunshots! I hit the floor (my natural reaction from living in the ghetto!)
My brother and I ran to the front of the house to see what was happening. It was a Church Celebration in honor of St. Constantine and Helen! We watched as several hundred participants walked in honor of these saints. It was a touching moment. I was honored to be able to see it up close and personal.
Love and Tolerance
For many years, Love and Tolerance has been my code. This sometimes means being tolerant of the intolerant. It may sound passive, but serenity is disrupted when one succumbs to anger and resentment.
Nowadays, in the U.S. there seems to be a lot of intolerance. Surprisingly, most come from the Christian community. Maybe this is fear based. No community wants their right to be taken away. God forbid that Christians might be persecuted in this great nation.
However, we must not let fear motivate us. Lest we succumb to the atrocious behaviors of historical intolerance.
I believe love and tolerance start within our homes, our neighborhoods, and our communities. Last month, the U.S. pulled out of the Paris Climate Control Agreement. Many were wailing gloom and doom projections. On the other hand, state and local governments were committing to hold to the agreement regardless.
Commitment from the grass roots! Sometimes political battles are lost. But the commitments don’t have to be. Thus, we can apply the practice of love and tolerance even if we don’t believe our government is.
Love, tolerance, unity, and empathy are not political policies. They are emotion and behavior first. How can you see yourself applying these values within your home and community? Talk to me…and stay blissful my friends – E