Let us who are weak and passionate have the courage to offer our infirmity and natural weakness to Christ with unhesitating faith, and confess it to Him; and we shall be certain to obtain His help, even beyond our worth, if only we continually plunge to the depth of humility.” – St John of the Ladder
Finding the Freedom to Live (FtFtL) grew out of a desire to help Eastern Orthodox Christians integrate our lives and relationships through a deeper understanding of our Tradition and theology and how these are embodied in our liturgical and personal spiritual paths. We focus particularly on intimacy, relationships and sexuality, but our concern is with the whole person. One priest described the FtFtL program as “a second and deeper catechesis, focusing on an Orthodox concept of the human person.”
The original text for the FtFtL program was written between 2010-2012 by Andrew Williams in conversation with Dr Philip Mamalakis, Dr Timothy Patitsas, and Georgia Williams at Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology in Boston, MA, USA. The aim of the program is to help Orthodox and others who struggle to find freedom and integrity in their own lives in terms of intimacy and sexuality. Topics covered include vulnerability, the effects of damaged family relationships, pornography use and its effects, promiscuity, divorce, sexual addiction, fetishes, childhood abuse and early sexualization. We reflect on how we conceptualize our sexual orientation and identity, and what this implies for our relationships and intimacy.
We are committed to prayer, practical help, research and the provision of resources to assist people struggling particularly with the issues mentioned above, but in general with all challenges and difficulties in interpersonal relationships, intimacy, eroticism and desire. In our work, we aim to be faithful to Christ and the Tradition of the Church. We bring the resources available to us in the tradition to the modern world so that, in the midst of the real, everyday difficulties and challenges we all face, we can learn to creatively engage the richness of the Church’s tradition with our own everyday lives and grow in the love of Christ day to day.
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