Brother's Open Road

BROTHER STAVROS

Monk
New Skete Monastery

“The biggest pitfall is to let society decide what your happiness is. To be really happy, you have to be counter-cultural, and have the bravery to do it.”

INTERESTS:

Philosophy & Religion

THEMES DISCUSSED:

Beliefs & Faith Choices Dedication Family Opportunity Societal Pressures Culture Fulfillment Fear Exploration Goals Transitions Pressure

TAGS:

advertising, belief system, bravery, coming of age, commitment, contentment, countercultural, eastern church, exposure, guilt, happiness, hurt, independence, monastic life, on the edge, parents, religion, self discovery, society, standing up to someone

BIOGRAPHY:

Brother Stavros’ parents weren’t exactly jumping up and down with joy when they learned their son wanted to become a monk. Having raised their son in the heart of metropolitan Washington D.C., they hadn’t expected him to choose religion as a career pursuit. But Washington’s bustling climate of secular politics had little effect on Stavros, and he instead found himself swept away by spiritual intimacy of the Eastern Orthodox Church. Rejecting the pinstripe ties of Capitol Hill, Stavros put on a monk's robe and joined the seminary—much to the disappointment of his family, who thought he was wasting his education. His mother tried to talk him out of it, but Stavros followed his heart, even if it meant going against the grain. Today, as a founding brother of the New Skete Monastery in the Pennsylvania, the once-stifled-city-boy gets to enjoy the beauty of nature on a sprawling farm. He hikes the wilderness, tends to the farm animals, and even has an Animal Planet show about his famous German-Shepherd training. A proud nonconformist, Stavros says “society is gonna try and tell you what will make you happy,” but you have to find it for yourself.

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