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text 2019-01-11 13:51
I Am The Vine by St. Cyril of Alexandria


St. Cyril expounds of the passage of Scripture John 15:5 speaking of the union of the believer to Christ through the Holy Spirit. A rich and powerful exposition from the Bishop of Alexandria, Egypt in AD 400. He is known for the Ecumenical Council of Ephesus where he defended the "inseparable unity" of the Divine and human nature of Christ. Read now his exposition:


The Lord calls himself the vine and those united to him branches (John 15:5) in order to teach us how much we shall benefit from our union with him, and how important it is for us to remain in his love. By receiving the Holy Spirit, who is the bond of union between us and Christ our Savior, those who are joined to him, as branches are to a vine, share in his own nature.


On the part of those who come to the vine, their union with him depends upon a deliberate act of the will; on his part, the union is effected by grace. Because we had good will, we made the act of faith that brought us to Christ, and received from him the dignity of adoptive sonship that made us his own kinsmen, according to the words of Saint Paul: He who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with him.


The prophet Isaiah calls Christ the foundation, because it is upon him that we as living and spiritual stones are built into a holy priesthood to be a dwelling place for God in the Spirit. Upon no other foundation than Christ can this temple be built. Here Christ is teaching the same truth by calling himself the vine, since the vine is the parent of its branches, and provides their nourishment.


From Christ and in Christ, we have been reborn through the Spirit in order to bear the fruit of life; not the fruit of our old, sinful life but the fruit of a new life founded upon our faith in him and our love for him. Like branches growing from a vine, we now draw our life from Christ, and we cling to his holy commandment in order to preserve this life. Eager to safeguard the blessing of our noble birth, we are careful not to grieve the Holy Spirit who dwells in us, and who makes us aware of God’s presence in us.


Let the wisdom of John teach us how we live in Christ and Christ lives in us: The proof that we are living in him and he is living in us is that he has given us a share in his Spirit. Just as the trunk of the vine gives its own natural properties to each of its branches, so, by bestowing on them the Holy Spirit, the Word of God, the only-begotten Son of the Father, gives Christians a certain kinship with himself and with God the Father because they have been united to him by faith and determination to do his will in all things. He helps them to grow in love and reverence for God, and teaches them to discern right from wrong and to act with integrity.

Source: greggordon.home.blog/2019/01/11/i-am-the-vine-by-st-cyril-of-alexandria
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review 2018-11-28 23:26
24 Festive Tasks: Door 8 - Penance Day, Book
The Brimstone Wedding - Barbara Vine
The Brimstone Wedding - Barbara Vine,Juliet Stevenson

Tedious, predictable, and boring beyond belief.  I'd never have thought I'd actually ever say this about a book by Barbara Vine (Ruth Rendell in her standalone thriller writer incarnation), but there we are -- and not even Juliet Stevenson's lovely narration could do anything about it.  The tedium of unhappy marriage and an ultimately equally unhappy adulterous affair, experienced by two women of different generations and different social classes who tell each other their respective stories ... yawn.  Been there, done that, all probably pretty realistic, especially the present-day story, but by the same token that narrative strain in particular is just utterly predictable.  OK, OK, the "marriage" bit was perhaps foreseeable given this book's title, but in view of the author and since the title also has the word "brimstone" in it, I really was expecting a bit more of the hellfire and demonic machinations that Vine normally so excels in.  But even in the older woman's story, which is marginally more interesting, the "big reveal" at the end had been telegraphed pretty much from the start, and the book ends with a twist intended to tie both stories together even more firmly which (1) also was not exactly a surprise, given the amount of foreshadowing in that particular direction, and (2) is in itself, never mind the foreshadowing, artificial to the nth degree and as unnecessary to the storyline as an extra limb.  Shame, Baroness Rendell; I'd have expected so much better from you!


However, since this book is literally brimming (bad pun intended) with people searching their souls, hiding guilty secrets -- not only of the adulterous kind -- and seeking absolution, I'm claiming this as my read for Penance Day so as to at least get something out of it after all.  This is incidentally also the only reason why I finished it.


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review 2018-11-19 19:46
A Fatal Inversion / Barbara Vine
A Fatal Inversion - Barbara Vine

In the long, hot summer of 1976, a group of young people is camping in Wyvis Hall. Adam, Rufus, Shiva, Vivien and Zosie hardly ask why they are there or how they are to live; they scavenge, steal and sell the family heirlooms.


Ten years later, the bodies of a woman and child are discovered in the Hall's animal cemetery. Which woman? And whose child?


Probably not the best Barbara Vine/Ruth Rendell book to get started with. For me, it didn’t flow as well as I could have hoped. Plus, although I certainly don’t require likeable characters to keep me engaged, I have to care about who did what and why. I found all of the characters in this novel to be unpleasant (to say the least) and I couldn’t care much about how they ended up.

It was odd—gathering the details gradually and making assumptions about who the woman and the child found in the pet cemetery could be and how they got there. I’ve read books where I’ve known the perpetrator from the beginning, but still was intrigued by the story, but this book didn’t grab me the same way. It wasn’t until the very last pages that I found myself engaged. That’s a long time to wait.

I was reading AFI largely on my work coffee breaks. It helped to have no alternative reading available, as I found myself reluctant to pick up the book and yet anxious to get finished and move on to something more rewarding. Truly, cognitive dissonance.

Perhaps I was just in the wrong mood for this mystery—I’m a bit off of mysteries right now, I think perhaps I’ve read a few too many of them in the last while. But it was one of the books that I chose for my 2018 reading list and so I forged ahead with it. Your mileage may vary.

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text 2018-11-03 06:34
A-Z Autorinnenchallenge noch 2 Monate
Danke, ich brauche keinen Sitzplatz!: Das neue Tagebuch der Marie Sharp (Das Tagebuch der Marie Sharp, Band 3) - Virginia Ironside,Sibylle Schmidt
Im Blick - Marie Luise Lehner
Fegefeuer - Sofi Oksanen,Angela Plöger
Bis ans Ende, Marie - Barbara Rieger
Regen in Moskau - Zsuzsa Selyem
Es scheint die Sonne noch so schön - Barbara Vine
Wolkentöchter - Xinran

Der Endspurt für die A-Z Autorinnenchallenge steht bevor. Noch sind 2 Monate zu absolvieren.


Was hat sich also in letzer Zeit getan. Ich habe sehr viele Buchstaben übererfüllt, auch diese kommen selbstverständlich auf meine Liste. Außerdem fehlen mir nur noch 2 Buchstaben das W und das U, wobei ich den Buchstaben W gerade angefangen habe.


Meine Statistik sagt mit Stand 1. November dabei sind noch Bücher, die ich schon gelesen habe, aber noch keine Rezension geschrieben wurde.


Autorinnen 31/62

Gemischt Autorin/Autor 2/62

Autoren 29/62


Meine Autorinnenquote ist also noch immer bei 50%


Weil mir die Challenge so gut gefällt und ich eigentlich gar nicht mehr ohne diese Ziele lesen will und mich unbedingt weiter mit LeseFreunden über Autorinnen austauschen möchte, plane ich eine Neue Challenge Autorinnen aus allen EU-Staaten bis auf die Zwergstaaten - wieder von 1. Dezember 2018 bis  31.12.2019  zu lesen. Ist wer interessiert?  Auf goodreads gibt es schon eine Gruppe wir haben auch schon rechechiert und die Regeln formuliert bzw. die unmöglichen Länder gestrichen.


Nun natürlich auch noch meine Liste zum Nachschauen mit heutigem Stand der Dinge:


A: Austen, Jane: Emma **
B: Bachmann, Ingeborg: Das dreißigste Jahr **
C: Chambers, Becky: Der lange Weg zu einem kleinen zornigen Planeten 2,5 *** aufgerundet auf 3
D: Dusl Anna Maria: Boboville - 2,5 *** aufgerundet auf 3
E: Emfried Heidi: Die Akte Kalkutta **** Rezensionsexemplar
F: Fölck, Romy: Totenweg 3,5*** aufgerundet auf 4 Rezensionsexemplar
G: Gavalda, Anna: Zusammen ist man weniger allein 2,5 ** abgerundet
H: Han, Kang: Die Vegetarierin *****

     Hirth, Simone: Bananama **** Rezensionsexemplar

     Hasmann Gabriele: Die schrägen Vögel der Habsburger (currently reading) Rezensionsexemplar
I: Ironside, Virginia: Danke ich brauche keinen Sitzplatz 1,5 aufgerundet auf **(12.08.18) 
J: Joyce Rachel: Die unwahscheinliche Pilgerreise des Harold Fry ****
K: Kaiser, Vea: Blasmusikpop ****

     Klingl, Livia: Der Lügenpresser 3,5*** aufgerundet auf 4 Rezensionsexemplar
L: Lessing, Doris: Die gute Terroristin **

    Lehner, Marie Luise: Im Blick ** Rezensionsexemplar (06.10.18)
M: Du Maurier, Daphne: Die Parasiten 4,5 *****
N: Nothomb Amelie: Der Professor ****
O:  Oksanen Sofi: Fegefeuer **** (30.07.18)
P: Piuk Petra: Lucy fliegt *** Rezensionsexemplar

    Perner, Rotraud: Lieben Rezensionsexemplar (currently reading)
Q: De Queiroz, Rachel: Die drei Marias ***

R: Rossbacher, Claudia: Steirerquell *** Rezensionsexpemplar

    Rieger, Barbara: Bis ans Ende, Marie ** Rezensionsexemplar (15.08.2018)
S: Stauffer, Verena: Orchis **** Rezensionsexemplar

    Selyem, Zsuzsa: Regen in Moskau   *** Rezensionsexemplar (12.10.18)
T: Tyler Anne: Die Reisen des Mr. Leary ****
V: Vine, Barbara: Es scheint die Sonne noch so schön 4,5 Sterne abgerundet auf **** (28.09.18)
W: Wolf Christa: Kindheitsmuster (currently reading)
X: Xue Xinran: Wolkentöchter ****  (07.08.18)  
Y: Yoshimoto Banana: Eidechse *** nur wegen der Stilform Kurzgeschichte
Z: Zeh Julie: Schilf ****

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text 2018-10-23 17:37
Reading progress update: I've read 221 out of 317 pages.
A Fatal Inversion - Barbara Vine


All of these people, but especially Adam and Rufous, are horrible!



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