# 1 (15) 1998


     An essay by Metropoltan ANTHONY of Sourozh "Laymen's Royal Priesthood", opens the 15th issue (the 1st in 1998) of the journal Alpha and Omega. In the same section Biblical Studies we print a paper by Archbishop SIMON of Ryazan' and Kasimov "Bishop Mikhail (Gribanovskij)" in which a biographical sketch of a Russian theologian and Biblical scholar is presented. A paper by Fr Aleksij KNJAZEV "Judah and Tamar" containing a commentary on Gen 38 belongs to the same section.
     The section Patristic Exegesis contains "Ten Orations on the Commandments of Christ" by little known Byzantian writer St NEOPHYTES the Recluse (*1134-1220). The text is translated into Russian and with a commentary by Aleksej SIDOROV. The following section Patristics contains the next portion of "Amphilochia" by St PHOTIUS, Patriarch of Constantinople translated into Russian and commented by Dmitrij AFINOGENOV (the publication was started in Issues 13 and 14 of Alpha & Omega).
     The section Church in History contains homilies by Archimandrite AFANASIJ (Nechaev) on the Twelve Feasts (Lord's Feasts), papers by Archimandrite LEV (Gillet) "Laymen in the History of the Church", by Fr Georges FLOROVSKY "Staretz Siluan", and by Fr Boris MIKHAJLOV "Is the Church persecuted in Russia today?" Here we print also "From my Life" and "Passages from a Diary" by Nun JERMOGENA (*1905-1988) published by Margarita BOL'SHAKOVA, and a chapter from "Spritual Foundations of Society" by Semen FRANK entitled "Main Principles of Social Life: on the Social Ideal" provided by a preface by Aleksandr DOBROKHOTOV. A paper by Aleksandr GUREVICH "The State of Despair and Spiritual Praxis" also belongs here since it addresses the issues in the spiritual heritage of Staretz Siluan of Athos and Archimandrite Sofronij (Sakharov), his disciple and biographer.
     The next section Church in Eternity includes the first part of the "Lives of the Newly Canonized Saints" that embraces all saints canonized by the Russian Orthodox Church since 1917, provided by a historical survey by Archimandrite MAKARIJ (Veretennikov). Here we print also a paper by Aleksej BEGLOV "Stt Petr and Fevronija of Murom".
     The section Apologetics contains a paper by Tatjana MILLER and Marina ZHURINSKAJA "Apologetics in its Origin and Nowadays". In the next section Church Culture we print a paper by Fr Cyrille ARGENTI "The Meaning of Symbol in the Orthodox Liturgy", by Jurij MALKOV "Iconographer and Painting of Icons in Ancient Russia", and a paper by Anthony HOURDAKIS "Graeco-Roman Paideia and Early Christian Education".
     A "Martyrologue" by Fr Deacon Kirill KALEDA, a note entitled "'Virtual Reality': Danger for a Human Soul" by Sergej BELORUSOV, the next part of materials for study entitled "A History of the Ecumenical Councils: the First Period of Iconoclasm and the VIIth Ecumenical Council" by Alexander DVORKIN, a paper by Aleksandr JEGORTSEV entitled "A Shrine Abandoned - yet a Shrine..." that tells about the restoration of the Moscow University Church of St Tatiana the Martyr, papers by Tatjana KONDRATJEVA "A. Kartashev on the Influence of Church on the Russian Culture", and by Stephen HAYES "The Orthodox Mission in Tropical Africa" conclude the issue.