I'll Come Speak

    I write and speak on all sorts of topics: ancient Christian spirituality and the Eastern Orthodox faith, the Jesus Prayer, marriage and family, the pro-life cause, cultural issues, and more. You can contact Cynthia Damaskos of the Orthodox Speakers Bureau if you’d like to bring me to an event. This Calendar will let you know when I’m in your neighborhood.


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Entries in Podcast (60)


The Comfort of Death

[Ancient Faith Radio, August 9, 2007]

Hi, this is Frederica Mathewes-Green.  I’m in the car; there’s cars going by me.  I’m on I-95 south, driving from Baltimore to Washington.  And I was just thinking that sometimes I’m comforted with the thought that I’m going to die someday. 


I’m going to give a speech this morning and it’s hard to write.  It’s hard to write and speak in contexts other than Orthodox for me, because when I talk to secular people or to other sorts of Christians, the whole worldview, the whole framework, the whole vocabulary is so different from what I’ve gotten used to and come to love so much in Orthodoxy.  And I’ve got a speech I’ve been writing for the last several weeks; it’s three times as long as the time they’ve given me to speak.  I’m so anxious to be able to express what I’m saying without being misunderstood.  And, you know, that’s tiring.


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Dating vs Courtship

[Ancient Faith Radio; August 2, 2008]

Frederica: We’re at Five Guys Burgers, which is the best burgers in Baltimore, and everybody is chowing down except me, because I came late, so mine is still on order.  These are some pretty hefty burgers.  In Pasadena.  They just opened one of these in Pasadena; I got the word from the end of the table.  Our Pasadena.  Pasadena, Maryland.  And Jocelyn sent me something she’d written earlier today about dating, and ‘I kissed dating goodbye,’ versus ‘I gave dating a chance,’ versus people should just do courtship.  And you’d read an article by somebody who said he’s very much in favor of courtship, but the problem is when people meet for the first time, they want to get to know each other.  They’re not ready to jump into courtship.  So his solution was parents should absolutely control every moment of their children’s lives, and children should know that their parents are going to choose their mate when they’re grown up.  They will have no choice whatsoever.  I don’t think that’s completely feasible [laughter] but it does show that even for people who are kind of opposed to the dating whirl, what’s the alternative?  So, what do you think? Jocelyn?  My daughter-in-law Jocelyn, married to my handsome son Steve.  Did you and Steve date?

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Victoria's Secret

[Ancient Faith Radio; July 26, 2007]

This shopping mall, Arundel Mills Mall, is one (I think) of a national chain of malls, the Mills malls.  All of them are made up of a lot of discount stores.  We’ve got a discount Saks 5th Avenue, a discount Neiman Marcus; there’s always an Outdoor World, I can see that over there.  There’s a Bed Bath & Beyond, a, what’s it called? Birmingham Coat Factory? That doesn’t sound right.  Burlington! Burlington Coat Factory.  So it’s a big mall; it’s built in a circular shape so as you walk around it, I think it’s a whole mile if you walk all the way around the circuit.  And it’s a great place for people to come with kids because you can walk, it’s air conditioned, it’s warm in the winter.  And as you go along, there are different, kind of, themes, as you go from section to section.  Right now, you might be able to hear this electronic sound of a cricket overhead.  And there goes a loon or something.  This section here is supposed to be like, you’re out in a marsh and there are giant dragonflies and butterflies hanging overhead and a bench – a sort of circular thing to sit on – that’s a great big water lily. 

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[Ancient Faith Radio; July 5, 2007]

Frederica: Here I am in the Shakespeare Garden, of the—what’s it called? The Portland


Kh. Krista: The Portland International Rose Garden.


Frederica: The Portland International Rose Garden, in Portland, Oregon.  Which is gorgeous.  It’s on the side of a mountain, part of the Cascade Range, Krista was telling me, and you can stand at the top and look down the terraces, and it’s just roses and roses and roses.  We’re in a little tucked-away corner that’s the Shakespearean garden; not too many roses here, but all the flowers are named after characters in Shakespeare.  So this is a nice quiet place to be.  I’m here with Krista West, Khouria Krista West, the wife of Father Alban West, who is the pastor of St. George Antiochian Orthodox Church in Portland, and her daughter Nora, and her daughter Zuzu, both of whom are sketching at this moment.  Krista’s probably known to many listeners as a liturgical seamstress and as an expert in liturgical vestment history.  You gave a speech about this recently at Holy Cross Seminary in Boston, didn’t you?

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[Ancient Faith Radio; June 28, 2007]

Frederica: I’m sitting here with my friend, Father Gregory Czumack, who’s the pastor of Four Evangelists Ukrainian Orthodox Mission, in Bel Air, MD, near the Pennsylvania border.  And feeling light and joyous and teary-eyed because we just had my confession here in the icon corner of my living room.  And I asked Father Gregory if we could talk for just a few minutes, if he could tell me what it’s like to be a confessor.  It was something you were saying then, as we finished the prayers, about what a privilege it feels like, and of course for laypeople, when we look at priests and we think about hearing confessions, we think you must be very depressed about the state of the human race, or you must hear things that just make you furious at people, and we sort of project those ideas onto the clergy.  What is it like to actually be hearing confessions?

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[Ancient Faith Radio; June 21, 2007]

Frederica: I’m sitting here on the sofa in the blue room in my house with my son Stephen, who has a red wristband on that says ‘Bonnaroo.’  Does it say ‘Bonnaroo 07’ or just ‘Bonnaroo?’ 2007.  And on the other sofa is Jocelyn, I think fast asleep.  Yeah, she’s fast asleep.  They’re exhausted because last night at this time they were just getting in the car to leave the Bonnaroo music festival and they had an 11-hour drive and have done laundry and a number of other things in between.  Steve, when was the first time you and Jocelyn went to Bonnaroo?

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Barbara Nicolosi on Hollywood for Christians

[Ancient Faith Radio; June 15, 2007]

Frederica: Here we are.  I’m at a beautiful outdoor café, what was the name of this place?  I’ve forgotten already.  Tree, something, Italiano, I think. [Laughs]  I’m looking around, I’m trying to see if there’s a sign.  Anyway, I’m in Malibu Village in Malibu, California on an overcast day.  It’s pleasantly cool; it’s just perfect here, as it so often is.  June gloom, I’m told.  I’m sitting here with my friend, Barbara Nicolosi, who is a screenwriter, who is a teacher of screenwriting and has a number of other talents and one of the things that frustrates her is Christians that think they’re going to write a screenplay and convert the world to Christianity with a script that is pretty unprofessional.  But let me let you speak for yourself; just start in anywhere.  Hit it, Barbara.  They can’t see you moving your hands and making faces; you’ve actually got to – [laughs]

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[Ancient Faith Radio; June 8, 2007]

This movie theater here: the Muvico 24, is just south of Baltimore and it’s such a hoot.  I don’t know too much about this company, this chain, Muvico theaters, but they build their theaters to have these grandiose themes, and this one is Egyptian temple, that’s the theme we have going on here.  As you approach this 24-auditorium theater, there are these huge columns with big capitols on top.  Everything looks like it’s destroyed, like it’s in ruins.  It all has cracks painted into it, Egyptian figures going around these columns.  I’m guessing there’s about 20 columns with black bases and then the sandstone rising up above that.  Huge multi-colored panels and snake heads and all kinds of crazy things. 

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Frederica Here and Now podcast

My podcast, “Frederica Here and Now,” is carried by AncientFaithRadio; for it, I record short pieces based on conversations and ideas I have as I move through the week. Here’s the link to subscribe: just scroll down.


Catechumens on the Way to Dinner

[Ancient Faith Radio; June 1, 2007]

Frederica: Let me introduce it: I’m in a car with my husband and we’re going to lunch with some friends in Washington, so we’re driving along here and my husband, Father Gregory Mathewes-Green, pastor of Holy Cross Orthodox Church outside of Baltimore. We’re talking about catechumens, the catechetical process and how people coming over from another kind of Christianity often have more re-thinking to do than they expect, certainly it was more for me than I thought I would have to do. It took many years, I think, to realize the depth and the range of how Orthodoxy was different. So of course my husband takes in many catechumens and counsels and prays and talks them through to Chrismation, and I wanted to get his feedback about what are some of the flags that you see going up that tell you that things are going well or are not going well.

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