Closing Remarks at the 70th Commencement
of Holy Trinity Orthodox Seminary

by Archi­man­drite Luke, Rec­tor

Dear Graduates and Seminarians!

St James writes, If any of you lack wis­dom let him ask of God.1

Archimandrite Luke delivers closing remarks on the acquisition of wisdom.

Archi­man­drite Luke deliv­ers clos­ing remarks on the acqui­si­tion of wis­dom.

You have gained some knowl­edge of your­selves and of var­i­ous sub­jects through your stud­ies and expe­ri­ences. But to gain the wis­dom for sal­va­tion to which St James refers, you need to reflect deeply in order to under­stand the Spir­it behind your knowl­edge. Some of you might desire to fur­ther your stud­ies, which should hope­ful­ly ben­e­fit you. But remem­ber that the priest­ly rul­ing body of the Jew­ish nation was com­prised of men who all held “ter­mi­nal degrees,” “doc­tor­ates in Old Tes­ta­ment stud­ies.” For all of their knowl­edge they failed to under­stand, rec­og­nize and wor­ship the Truth found amongst them. They were blind to the Spir­it.

We are told we live in the post-truth era. To be an Ortho­dox Chris­t­ian or pas­tor in the world, we must revis­it the Pla­ton­ic tri­ad of Truth, Good­ness, and Beau­ty through the prism of the Gospel and the Fathers. The ancients were clos­er to Christ in this respect than our con­tem­po­raries are today.

My advice is to draw less atten­tion to your­selves, to avoid triv­i­al­i­ty and the super­fi­cial. This prob­a­bly means less time on social media. Spend more of your time form­ing your souls with the rich­es God has abun­dant­ly giv­en you, and when­ev­er the oppor­tu­ni­ty aris­es, show an act of love for Christ’s sake to some­one near you, your neigh­bor.

St James writes, Who is wise and under­stand­ing among you? Let him show by good con­duct that his works are done in the meek­ness of wis­dom.2

Thank you.