ROAC Paschal Epistle 2014

Christ is Risen!

Now the entire Orthodox Christian world is announced this lovely welcome, enhance and update our faith through the witness of the great miracle of will and love of God – Resurrection. “If Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain (ie, in vain), and your faith is in vain” (1 Cor., 15:14) – warns the Apostle. He was at first a persecutor of the early Church, but, being called by the Lord Himself, is the apostle, a messenger of Christ, diligently carried the Gospel witness of Christ’s Resurrection in backslidden pagan world.

Yes, Christ’s resurrection, until the Lord vouchsafe rescued They meet face to face in the kingdom of the Father, we can comprehend only faith to take on faith. “If you do not stir up faith in the heart, it can really go out of negligence in us faith, may like to die for us, Christianity, with all its mysteries. Enemy that just tries to extinguish faith in the heart and lead to oblivion all the truths of Christianity” – wrote in his diary, “My Life in Christ,” St. John of Kronstadt.

Alas, many of a lifetime is not enough to take faith in the Risen Christ. And the modern world puts Easter celebration in your hard “format” in its scope, where many of our contemporaries is the Divine celebration, in fact, limited to light Easter vigil. Almost universally forgotten pious Russian custom solid Svetlolikuyuschey weeklong celebration of Easter, where we have little at this time to make daily Easter processions. But the Lord calls upon His Easter feast all – and careless, and nonconstant, and workers’ edinonadesyatogo “hours adhered to spiritual work preparation for Easter at the last moment. Therefore, even short moments Easter service, our night at idle Deisis tomb of the Risen Christ will undoubtedly bring sincere people, by the grace of God, prayer and spiritual joy.

But this joy is especially great for those who intently selflessly preparing for Easter. For this training, the Holy Church invites us to go through some spiritual ladder, which consists of the steps of our spiritual ascent from the vanities of this world to the current celebrations of celebrations and holidays holidays. Starting this ladder was laid 10 weeks ago, when we read the Gospel at the Liturgy of the Publican and the Pharisee. Quickly passed six weeks of Lent, and have already passed the great and saving days of the Passion Holy Week. For these spiritual levels we ascended to heaven, and now we understand how vain was our way.

From now until the Second Coming of Christ, the world is divided into two parts – and this is the eve of the terrible and irrevocable separation that occurs on the day of judgment. Who in this world with Christ, who the children of His kingdom? – This is the believers in His Resurrection. Who is against? – It’s all those who have not accepted Christ, consciously rejecting His Resurrection: they live the interests of this world lying in wickedness, multiplying the business of the father of lies – the devil and his Aghgol. The kingdom of the Risen Christ, the kingdom of eternal life is taken by those who use force to delight him (cf. Matt. 11:12).

Majestic and important for us all the days of our Lord’s earthly life, but the greatest act of God is to win eternal damnation, tending over the human race, His wondrous and glorious Resurrection. Risen Lord could hit terrible punishment condemned him to death, Anna and Caiaphas, the Jewish high priests, pagan and idolatrous Pontius Pilate, but instead Lord pacheestestvennym humility wins his sin and prays for the salvation of His crucified. “He was wounded for our transgressions, bruised for our iniquities was; chastisement of our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed. Himself bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors” (Isaiah 53:5). God’s promise given to Adam, accomplished: Seed of the Woman – seedless incarnate our Lord – struck ancient serpent – Satan – in the nail on the head (Gen. 3:15). He is deprived of his main weapon against the human race – death.

Nor hell, neither death nor coffin, no sorrow, no guards could not hold Christ – He is Risen! By death – and life residence! For now and umirayuschievo Christ, Christ will be made alive. St. Paul testifies: “As in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive … Christ the firstfruits, then Christ’s at his coming” (1 Cor., 15:22-23). God’s truth and glory were all over the beauty, and the disciples of Christ, then, and their students, and the whole Church of Christ received the fullness of all the gifts of the Holy Spirit.

“Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with Me” (Rev. 3:20) – shows Christ. Now the Lord is not far away, behind the doors of the world in which we live. Now he is with us always, and we have given not only to talk about him, but sup (eat a meal) with Him. And the joy of intimacy with Him is given to us in the sacrament of Holy Communion of the Body and Blood of the Lord. From now on, the light beam of the Resurrection will be constantly penetrate our hearts and shine all his good intentions towards our salvation. Belief in the Resurrection encourages us to rush to the source of immortality and come to Him always, to the same calls us now philoprogenitive Orthodox Church Mother: “Take the Body of Christ, the immortal Source taste.” So it will be now and forever.

Yes, still not so well in our daily spiritual life. Our minds continue to visit the demonic thoughts, joining the meeting that we sometimes commit sin. Not only their sins, but the very thought of it, especially if we do not immediately drove away, and began to consider, in the soul leaves the trail wound. If it is not treated, the sinful thoughts and sins themselves, to which they lead, entwine soul networks that draw her into the abyss of hell. And it would not be out of this situation, if Christ is not risen!

But strength of the Risen Christ, destroyed the mediastinum hell, frees us from the power of sin and the devil, of course, if we ourselves have at least a little on it’s purpose.

Sincere belief in the Resurrection gives us inner spiritual freedom stand in the truth of our Holy Orthodox faith. Remember the call of Christ: “Ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free” (John 8: 32). This truth and freedom in Christ, we must protect, store and stir up, in any case without exposing themselves again to a yoke of slavery, subjugation of sin – that we might become a new, clean and worthy Communion Holy Communion (St. Abba Dorotheus). Therefore we need to be awake and after Easter, pray, be sober, cry and be enlightened. As called St. Theodore the Studite: “Do not say: I have grown old in the virtues and not afraid of anything. Always a danger of falling. Satan grown old in many virtues in an instant plunged into sin. So who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall “(1 Cor. 10:12)” …

Beloved in Christ, God-loving our flock, Reverend Fathers and face Strive to fasting, prayer and holiness, defiant, and all the world, which is shed in the world, monks and nuns, monks, prayer ours!

You prayerfully blagozhelayu spiritual tenderness and joy in these great and vysokotorzhestvennye days. At the same time I urge you all, especially now, during the hours of Easter celebrations, prayer aggravate the multiplication of love, the love of Christ among us to sow enmity and hatred aware that they do not charitable acts and acts which are contrary to the will of God and His new commandment which he on the eve of His sufferings on the Cross gave to His disciples: “Love one another.”

All welcome you and congratulate you again and again on the occasion of the Holy and Divine Easter!

Christ is Risen! – Truly He is Risen!

+ Humble Theodore, Metropolitan of Suzdal and Vladimir.