On January 30-31, St Tikhon Orthodox Theological Seminary hosted a Marriage and Family Retreat for married seminarians. Leading the retreat was Dr. Philip Mamalakis, Assistant Professor of Pastoral Care at Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Seminary. On Friday night, Dr. Mamalakis presented students and their spouses with an Orthodox approach to childrearing On Saturday, he lectured on aspects of marriage, incorporating group and couple exercises. Integrating data from marriage research and psychology with a theological perspective, Dr. Mamalakis offered a synthesis that resonates with the patristic and spiritual legacy of the Orthodox Church. Human relationships, he affirmed, are modeled on the Trinity. Every human is a person, made in the image of God, and longs for inter-personal communion. With this teaching as a foundation, relationships between spouses—or between parents and children—can be properly seen as rooted in a need for relationship, for connection. Dr. Mamalakis explored the meaning of this Christian revelation in light of modern research, and showed that, as Orthodox Christians, we are called to turn towards others in the same way we are called to turn towards Christ: in love and repentance.
-–2nd Year Seminarian Joseph Lucas, OCA